Sierra Vally Gran Fondo 6/12/13

Click on the Sierra Valley Gran Fondo link to find out more and how to become a sponsor of this community event.
Jon Pettengill Vice President of the Reno Cycling Club, is working directly with the Sierra Schools Foundation in Loyalton, CA to host the Inaugural Sierra Valley Gran Fondo on Sept. 21, 2013. There will be four cycling distances (33, 66, 96 & 160 miles)
The event is not only going to have the most unique cycling experience in our area, but in true Gran Fondo tradition, we will have an outdoor Expo for family fun and entertainment.

Camptonville News 6/12/13

Camptonville Prepared! Meeting Reminder, Wed. June 19th, 7pm at school.  Join us to review the plant sale successes to build on them for the Fire Picnic, Sept. 7, 2013.

We will start rounding up volunteers for E-Waste Drive on Sept. 14th 9am to 2pm.

Any questions/comments or concerns contact Judy at 288-1228 or email owlsneagles@inreach.com

The Cats 6/12/13

6/12/13

I hear them every morning... they run across the roof, eat some bird food and come back to the tree... If you open the window I can stop them...shy won't you listen to me..

6/12/13 I hear them every morning… they run across the roof, eat some bird food and come back to the tree… If you open the window I can stop them…why won’t you listen to me..

Gabby Fringette 6/15/13

Working hard, not to work

By Gabby Inc.

You all know about my quest not to learn anything his summer.  What none of us did know was that Mom the saintly, reads my gabbies.  So now she set up an algebra summer school.  While I can’t avoid that, I can avoid The Old Man’s attempts to get me to learn and work.

Listen to this:

The Old Man: Gabby, it’s time to write gabby.

Me: ok, can I start some music?

The Old Man: yeah, put some of this on. I can’t write if I hear your Popcorn music.

Me: but this stuff is depressing. It’s ok for the stuff you write, but it sounds like the music they play in movies when the hero goes into a coma.

Mom: no it’s not! It’s just a little quiet.

Me: can ether of you hear it? It’s the stuff that’s played when the depressing movie hero’s ma gets in a car crash!

The Old Man: How about this, is this depressing?

Me: No, this is the music that’s played when a hero goes into the forest and sees the forest spirit.

Mom: wow, you see stuff in the music, it weaves stories for you?

Me: yeah, want to know what happens next?

Mom: sure.

That worked for a while, but then Mom caught on.

Sometimes The Old Man’s attempts to teach me are solo acts. Then I rely on my cunning combined with things in my environment.

Such as the bathroom.

Oldy: ok, if your going to be an adult, you’re going to have to learn how to survive. One thing you might not think of is how to identify-

Me: I have to go to the bathroom.

Oldy: ok.

I’m back now, and his jaw unhinges for max word flow, like a python swallowing a deer.

Oldy: as I was saying, you can’t go to the-

Me: I need a drink of water. Be back in a sec.

It’s important not to use the bathroom card to many times.

Oldy: to preserve your money, you have to be able to identify sy-

Me: did you remember to close the shed door last night?

Oldy: I don’t know-

Me: I’ll check.

I walk, slowly, check the door. (I knew it was shut). And come back.

Oldy: as I was saying, you need to know the-

Me: I have to go to the bathroom again.

He was looking suspicious when I came back.

Oldy: you know, using the bathroom a lot is a symptom of many serious diseases like-

Me: did you know that the toothpaste looks like denture cream? Are you just mentally preparing yourself by buying it?

Oldy: no. It’s just the least chemically and the cheapest. So as I was saying-

Me: it’s lunchtime!

I will do a lot of stuff to avoid working. I have found arguments and distraction on the shell of a sunflower seed.

But one thing I won’t do is chores. It’s not that I’m lazy, it’s just that my mind kicks in and I do stuff so that I spend more energy on avoiding it than I would on it.

After all, my motto is “working hard, not to work.”

I could be a manager!

Dishes are my chore.

And dishes are all I do. No really. There has to be a written order submitted twenty-four hours in advanced, on a workday for me to do the counter or the microwave, or the stove.   I am not lazy. I hide dishes, yes, I have gotten more creative since mom found the cookie sheet under the claw foot bathtub.

Occasionally, though, I do have to get forks and spoons out of my guitar.

Unfortunately. I have learned.

Despite my best efforts, I learned how to embroider, the ancient Greek word for ‘ruin’ (olethros, in case you’re wondering), and about ‘rise over run,’ in linear equations.

I knew something would olethros my plot of ignorance sooner or later.

The Fringe on Snowden 6/12/13

The Meaning of Edward Snowden

A Fringe Ponderation

Edward Snowden is a 29 year old community college dropout who worked as an analyst for a contractor for the National Security Agency.  Snowden appeared as a social phenom when he went to the British newspaper the Guardian with stories of his exploits working for the bloated NSA.  According to Snowden, the government can and is accumulating a huge amount of data on all of us.  It isn’t selectively seeking information, going through the process to obtain a search warrant from a judge, then contacting internet and phone providers, and targeting one individual, according to Snowden.  Instead, it’s just gathering all the data that passes through the main servers, and storing it, where it can be data mined.  Snowden claimed that an analyst such as himself could tag on to any one of a number of fields and follow that to all the information stored on that person: cell phone records, emails, internet searches, buying habits, financial statements- everything.

Is Snowden just a blowhard, a junior college reject with a knack for computers who got a job he hated playing a minor role as a contract bureaucrat for the NSA and decided to inflate what little knowledge he had into fifteen minutes of fame?   Or, is he a true whistle blower, alerting the nation to an impending police state with eyes on its citizens that past despots could only dream of?

We’ll note that lots of people fully believe Snowden.  The recent scandals over federal agents sneaking phone records on journalists, or the IRS targeting both left and right wing groups for unwarranted scrutiny, and prior warnings about growing federal internet spying capabilities all prepared those worried about privacy for Snowden’s revelation.

Lots of people don’t believe Snowden.

Some people don’t believe him because, like herd animals, they continue to believe there is anonymity in numbers: there are simply too many of us for the government to spy on everyone.  Snowden’s image of a computer geek at a console winnowing an unbelievable torrent of data for information on a single person is unimaginable to them.  Even hundreds or thousands of such analysts seems too few.  It shouldn’t be difficult; every time someone sits down to do a Google search through millions of internet pages, they are using very similar technology.  There is no doubt that the government has the technology in place to gather lots and lots of data about our lives on the internet.  Is it keeping thousands of copies of the monkey smelling its own butt, or everyone’s baby pictures?  It’s possible the analysts don’t have to keep that information, they just have to link to it.  Facebook users are growing increasingly concerned that Facebook is keeping too much information on them, and Google is deeply woven in the interlink between our on line activity and government spying projects.  Indeed, Google-Motorola is working on new biocrafting technology which would implant our identity in a way that would make passwords obsolete.  That kind of individual link is the stuff of the Orwellian nightmare of the government that knows us too well.

Some people don’t care, relying on the timeworn talisman of “if you’ve done nothing wrong you have nothing to worry about.”  My criticism of that perspective centers on the idea that a free people are free only as long as they obey the government to the letter.  Governments tend to change the law, and doing nothing wrong today might become a serious offense tomorrow.    Further, it’s one very small step from reading what’s on a computer to putting something on a computer.  An efficient police state manufactures its own evidence.  It’s important to learn from history.

History also has a lesson about the nature of bureaucrats, and that is what Snowden was most warning us about.  Obama and others have come out to suggest that, first of all, the government is following the laws it made for itself, and second of all, as president, he can do what he likes.  Congress theoretically oversees the working of the NSA, provided the NSA answers congress truthfully, of course.  One doesn’t need to imagine a dark conspiracy of people who want to steal our liberty.  One need only imagine an army of bureaucrats, each level overseeing the ones below it and answerable to those above.  People in such positions tend to push their purview as far as possible.  Perhaps a judge’s order is necessary to use information so gathered in court, but nothing stops an eager bureaucrat from accessing such information when queried.  The power of such an agency to destroy lives is unimaginable.

As Snowden pointed out in recent interviews, it is impossible to live without the internet and the cell phone, and smart phones, conveniently, merge those two data sources.  Everything about us, our DNA to our drinking habits, are stored somewhere in a computer.  A great deal of data is now linked.  It probably isn’t quite as easy as Snowden described to access all our data from one location.  At least not yet, though HIPAA has done a great deal to standardize the coding and storing of medical information.  Perhaps one reason so many people believe Snowden is that, given the nature of bureaucrats, the power of the computer, and the unquenchable desire of government to control, the technology he describes is probably inevitable, if not now.

While career bureaucrats and elected officials all deny Snowden’s allegations, they seem eager to bring him to justice.  He claims to be a whistleblower, alerting the citizens to this gross violation of their civil rights; the official story is that he’s a traitor and a criminal because the activity he described is not illegal.  It’s perfectly legal for the government to access the private information of citizens, as long as it’s done according to law.  Snowden left the U.S., and the life he knew including his parents, who work for the feds, and his girlfriend, and his fat job as a geek for the government.  He’s most recently been seen in Hong Kong, but the general consensus is that either Snowden will be caught and rot in jail while the government takes years to make its case against him, or he’ll live in poverty for a little while abroad until eventually he “commits suicide” or has an accident.  The most powerful thing the government could do is, of course, nothing.  Treat him like a crank, refuse to let him back in the country, destroy his credit rating.

Let’s see what happens.

Good Luck!

Plumas/Sierra County Fair 6/12/13

6/12/13

“My goal is to have something going on within eyesight of anyone attending the fair!” That’s the guideline Fair Manager John Steffanic goes by when lining up entertainment at the Plumas Sierra County Fair. This year’s fair begins Wednesday, August 14 and runs through Sunday, August 18.

“Entertainment is much more than magicians and jugglers” explained Steffanic, “The quilt show is entertainment, so is an amusing or informative sign.” He looks for ways to make every nook and cranny of the fairgrounds entertaining. Look for scavenger hunts, historical displays and special contests. Steffanic invites the entire county to come and spend a day enjoying all the fairgrounds have to offer.

Music is an important part of any celebration, and there’s not a bigger celebration in both Sierra and Plumas counties. Old Town will feature live music on Thursday, Friday and Saturday nights showcasing local bands. The Quincy Elks will be serving the beer, and the Portola Rotary will be mixing the margaritas.

Friday and Saturday evenings will be special nights with free concerts in the huge Wold Amusement tent next to the front gate. The Tiki Lounge Lizards will take the stage on Friday night with surf music that will make you want to hit the dance floor. These Central Valley musicians will channel The Ventures, The Chantays and The Surfaris. There’s a good chance you will hear Wipe Out!

60's Summer of Love - new as of 2-1-13

The Plumas Sierra County Fair is especially excited to present “Decades of Music” on Saturday evening. There will be three shows, each showcasing a different decade of music. This fantastic musical group shows their versatility by performing as three groups in full costume. “These guys are big time!” says Steffanic, “ They nail every song. You can’t get enough of their act.” The first performance will be at 6pm in the Wold Amusement tent. As the 60’s Summer of Love, the group brings back Jefferson Airplane and Paul Revere and the Raiders hits. The 8pm performance features Weird Science, with  a rockin’ tribute to the 80’s. Finally, Big Bad Boogie Rock covers the 1990’s at 10pm. All the performances in the Wold Amusement tent are free of charge.

Although the Plumas Sierra County Fair has always been held the second Wednesday of August, the calendar pushed it back a bit, and that opened up lots of opportunities for entertainment. That calendar helped bring Pig Racing to the fair. Nothing says county fair more than pig racing! There will be races throughout the week. There will also be the return of Pedal Tractor Pulls. Get the kids involved in racing these miniature John Deere tractors. It’s not as easy as it looks!

DSC_0108

The Swan Brothers Circus will set up their Big Top again in the Kidland! Area with several shows a day. The Calvary Chapel once again will have supervised kid’s activities like the corn bin, face painting and old fashioned races. Look for Dr. Solar’s Magical Medicine show and the Science Wizard, both alumni of the annual fair.

Probably the greatest entertainment comes from the exhibits entered by the residents of Plumas and Sierra Counties. The Art Barn is back with the best exhibition in all of California. The Home Arts building is chock full of things from Home Brewed Beer to raw wool. The Livestock barns are fun to wander through and look at the lambs, pigs, goats and steers. Don’t forget the chickens, rabbits and guinea pigs too. There will be an opportunity farm, where kids can come in and meet some of the animals up close and personal. Finally, many people forget there is a full horse show going on the first few days of the fair. It is worth the trip out to the horse arena to watch driving competitions, horsemanship and gymkana.

Hurdle for Square Market Website 10 2012

The horse arena will also be the location for the bull riding and rough stock competition produced by the FRC Rodeo Team. Bull and barebacks make for an exciting show. Tickets for this event will be sold separately.

It all wraps up on Sunday night with American Valley Speedway races. This is usually the biggest race of the year, kind of like homecoming. You do not want to miss this. DART Dwarfs and IMCA Modifieds will take the track.

A final schedule will be posted on the fair website, www.plumas-sierracountyfair.net, by August 1. Each day’s schedule will also be available in the daily fair program; the Chipper Gazette.

Knock Out Their Eyes 6/12/13

Missiles over Istanbul? Or just knock-out-their-eyes tear gas?

By Tom H. Hastings

Tom Hastings

Tom Hastings

So, now that the Turkish government, under the fiats of Prime Minister Recep Tayyip “Facebook is the worst menace to society” Erdogan, is running down nonviolent protesters andshooting tear gas cannisters into their heads and permanently blinding them, should we ask John McCain what to do? Or John Kerry? These are some of the leaders of the conservatives and liberals who want to ramp up the US military aid and action in Syria because Bashar al-Assad is violent against violent insurgents and anyone else affiliated with them or nearby when his Syrian military strikes.

Oh–that’s right, Turkey is in NATO. We can’t really bomb them. We, in fact, provide them with their bombs. I’m sure we can expect more reports from yet another Muslim country in which pro-democracy demonstrators are hit with weapons marked “Made in the USA.”

Just leave it alone. The world of Islam should be answerable to the entire world, not to the US alone and not to some rogue coalition or military alliance unduly influenced by the US. Does the world of Islam need meddling from the outside? Yes, if the reformed UN comes to believe it. What is justified in the name of Islam–beheadings, stonings, ad nauseam–is as ghastly as what is justified in the name of the national interest–or the humanitarian fig leaf–of the US, at least when done by the US military. Even Islamic scholars who claim that they understand nonviolence sometimes do not. An example is Zeki Saritoprak, who authored a journal article in Muslim World in 2005 that first claims that Mohammed was nonviolent and never had a single act of violence attributed to him, and, just two sentences later, notes that the Prophet did ‘defend himself.’ Well, it’s one or the other, Dr. Saritoprak, not both.

A pax on both their houses. The US and NATO should be answerable to the entire world, not just to themselves. Like Assad, Obama and his spokespeople for drones justify killing children by noting the violence of the individuals who were the nominal targets of the strikes–which are made against them or anyone nearby. The inescapable illogic and illegality of these claims should, at some point, challenge us all to help think about how to convert our war system to a peace system.

We should be spending some serious funding on this research into improved sanctions, people power, de-escalation best practices, crowdsourcing early warning, grievance satisfaction, win-win negotiation, and other nonviolent enforcement alternatives. Humanitarian war is oxymoronic, and our solutions are not the military, even though that is by far our biggest investment. It is good money after bad and we have spent ourselves silly, a bit like the cigaret companies of the 1950s and 60s. We have a successful propaganda machine for a product–violence–that has caused and spread a cancer throughout our body politic. We will either learn to fix these problems from a broad-based, racially, religiously, and generally diverse societal democratic effort or we will see the ‘solutions’ imposed yet again by the elites so used to getting the benefits while we get the costs.

Dr. Tom H. Hastings directs PeaceVoice.

 

Carol’s Books 6/12/13

6/12/13
Carol says:
Snow White Must Die
by Nele Neuhaus
This is a mystery with a main plot, sub-plot, sub-sub plots…..and somehow it is not overwhelming.  On page 1 Tobias is released from prision for the murder of 2 teenage girls.  Friends he went to school with 10 years ago – he is now 31.  At the gate, his friend Nadia picks him up and the story goes from there.  Who really killed those girls?  Then we get into all of the sub-plots – another murder, infidelities, a kidnap or two, there is so much in this book.  And yet I was able to keep track and just had to keep reading.  I got so wound up that about half way through I had to read the end so I could get to sleep that night!   Reading the end didn’t take away from the story, either.
It all takes place in Germany and the names are not familiar, so that helped me keep who was who in my mind.  And I liked to picture it all in my mind – the town in Germany, and so on.  OK, so it took me a few chapters to figure out who was who, but it was fairly easy.  This is a good suspense novel, and it is not gory.  I can’t tell you more of the story, just the overview.  You will want to figure out who did what and what is going to happen next.  Well, you just can’t figure out what is going to happen next.  It is a lively book.  The author has woven an intricate story, easy to follow tho, and it is a good one!
Amazon says:
Release date: January 15, 2013
Snow White Must Die by Nele Neuhaus is a tremendous new contemporary mystery series and huge international bestseller—with more than 3.5 million copies in print!

On a rainy November day police detectives Pia Kirchhoff and Oliver von Bodenstein are summoned to a mysterious traffic accident: A woman has fallen from a pedestrian bridge onto a car driving underneath. According to a witness, the woman may have been pushed. The investigation leads Pia and Oliver to a small village, and the home of the victim, Rita Cramer.

On a September evening eleven years earlier, two seventeen-year-old girls vanished from the village without a trace. In a trial based only on circumstantial evidence, twenty-year-old Tobias Sartorius, Rita Cramer’s son, was sentenced to ten years in prison. Bodenstein and Kirchhoff discover that Tobias, after serving his sentence, has now returned to his home town. Did the attack on his mother have something to do with his return?

In the village, Pia and Oliver encounter a wall of silence. When another young girl disappears, the events of the past seem to be repeating themselves in a disastrous manner. The investigation turns into a race against time, because for the villagers it is soon clear who the perpetrator is—and this time they are determined to take matters into their own hands.

An atmospheric, character-driven and suspenseful mystery set in a small town that could be anywhere, dealing with issues of gossip, power, and keeping up appearances.

Addiction to War 6/12/13

An American Awakening to the Addiction of War

by Erin Niemela

Erin Niemela

Erin Niemela

The recent NSA revelations of widespread surveillance on American citizens should be cause for intense protest.  Surely it will be, as a day of nationwide mass action to restore the Fourth Amendment has been planned for the fourth of July. But any awake American can see that PRISM is only one sock on a long line of dirty laundry. The list of U.S. government abuses and failures to protect stretches far and wide, an alphabet soup of depravity: PRISM, NDAA, CISPA, SOPA, Patriot Act, the Monsanto Protection Act, drones, secret kill lists, Guantanamo Bay, DNA tests, Abu Ghraib, Afghan Massacre, Keystone, Tar Sands, Hanford. I’m certain you’ll think of more.

While PRISM and the rest of the gang are individually sordid, when combined they are the track marks of a far more pervasive, widespread, life-wasting problem. One that has systematically attacked not just the Fourth Amendment, but also the First, Second, Fifth, Sixth, Eighth, and 10th. No matter how hard we advocate for the Fourth Amendment now, others will fall so long as this substance burns through the veins of the Republic.

This is your government on war.

An unnatural, synthesized invention, war courses through Congress, city halls and the Oval Office.  Paranoia, fear, consumption, degradation, enslavement, betrayal and suffering – these are the family values of a nation on war.

Our government’s addiction consumes the domestic budget, leaving little for health, education or infrastructure. It invades privacy and creates enemies through paranoia and fear, painting its opposition as savage, barbaric, shady, and justifying oppression, enslavement, torture and murder. It desecrates the natural world, poisoning the veins of the Earth and its abundance, waging chemical warfare and extracting the resources to do so.

This addiction isolates and alienates us from the global community, our physical and spiritual connections with the human family severed by consistent betrayal and erratic abuse.  This addiction gives illegitimate power and authority to the highest bidder; toxic dealers of the military-industrial complex operate within an untraceable, uncontrollable, private Silk Road.

Looking for a fix, the U.S. government betrays us for its own benefit and that of its corporate dealers. It transforms the Edward Snowdens, Bradley Mannings and Julian Assanges into puny snitches, faced with demands for assassination, and charged with illuminating our government’s addiction and challenging pervasive denial.

We need an intervention, an American Awakening, to end the inevitable suffering of the American people – indeed, the global village – at the whims of mega users.  Want to protect the Fourth Amendment? Want to protect them all? Call for a 28th Amendment – an amendment to abolish the slavery of addiction, an amendment to abolish war.

Amendment XXVIII of the Constitution of the United States of America

Section 1.  The American people, in accordance with the promotion of international justice, peace, human rights and dignity, hereby renounce the use of organized, armed force to resolve intra- and inter-state conflict; neither war nor war-making processes shall exist within the United States, or any place subject to their jurisdiction.

We can file as many class-action lawsuits as we’d like. We can repeal Citizens United, fight the NDAA, demolish Gitmo, and we should. But these sores will be replaced with new ones so long as the syringe of the military-industrial complex remains intact and full.

Section 2. Congress shall neither make nor approve war, nor approve of the use of military force, as a means for resolving intra- and inter-state conflict.

Just as we abolished slavery, another fundamentally immoral manmade institution, we can abolish the fundamentally immoral manmade institution of war, and all the harms associated thereof.

Section 3.  The United States shall neither make nor keep locations of detention for prisoners of war, and all prisoners, upon recognition, shall be released to their respective home nations or non-military, judicial courts.

On the fourth of July, our day of independence, stand up for the Fourth Amendment, but also stand up for the rest, because last week it was the Sixth, and tomorrow it’ll be the Fifth, so long as war is our drug of choice. No constitutional right is safe from the manipulative behavior of a government in denial.  We must demand a 28th Amendment – one amendment to secure them all – and declare our independence from the tyranny of addiction, from the enslavement of war.

Erin Niemela is a Master’s Candidate in the Conflict Resolution program at Portland State University and a PeaceVoice syndicated journalist.

 

Purdon Road Bridge Closure 6/12/13

PURDON ROAD BRIDGE PAINTING AND REHABILITIATION PROJECT

The County Public Works Department recently began work to rehabilitate the Purdon Road Bridge, located on the South Yuba River.  The project includes repair and replacement of some of the structural supports as well as cleaning and painting of the bridge.  Due to this construction activity, the bridge is initially scheduled for closure on Thursday, June 13th.

The 1st phase of construction includes repair of bridge structural members. This phase is expected to last approximately 3-4 weeks. During this phase the bridge will have limited access to the public only during non construction hours.

The 2nd phase of construction will include a complete abrasive blasting and repainting to restore the bridge to its original black paint color. The bridge will be entirely enclosed with a PVC shrink wrap material to protect the Yuba River and surrounding environment, and a dust collector will collect airborne emissions within the containment system. As a result of these activities, the bridge will be closed to all traffic. This entire process is expected to take approximately 4-6 weeks.

The existing parking lot and on-road parking on the south side of the bridge will be unaffected by construction activity, and access to nearby beaches and recreational trails will be open to the public. Approximately 300 feet of Purdon Road north of the bridge will be closed to the public, but pedestrian access to the river via nearby trails will be maintained adjacent to the construction site. Parking along the north side of the bridge will be available north of the road closure.

For additional information, please contact Joshua Pack, Principle Civil Engineer at joshua.pack@co.nevada.ca.us.

No Privacy for You 6/12/13

A Bad Month for Privacy Rights

By Laura L. Finley

Laura Finley

Laura Finley

Justice Louis Brandeis once called the right to privacy “the right most valued by civilized men.”  Sadly, it has become increasingly clear that, despite pronunciations about “change” and “transparency,” the Obama administration is continuing down the path so dangerously started by former President George W. Bush.

First, the Supreme Court decided that it is not a violation of the Fourth Amendment if police collect DNA from people who have merely been arrested, not convicted, of a crime. Although the Court specified that this practice, already occurring in more than half of the states, should only be done to those who are arrested for “serious” crimes, no definition of what constitutes a serious crime was provided. I wonder whether we should begin preparing ourselves simply to open our mouths whenever a police officer approaches. Whether you are rightly or wrongly arrested, your DNA from that cheek swab will go into the database and, as far as we know, remain there in perpetuity.

While defenders maintain that the practice will help exonerate innocent persons, the risks are huge. Ultimately, the power goes to police, a scary kind of power in the hands of those who do not always use it fairly. In January, President Obama signed into law the Katie Sepich Enhanced DNA Collection Act, which creates grants to help states pay for the expanded DNA databases, and thus we can expect that more will indeed do so. Once again, we have put our faith in a technology at the expense of civil liberties.  Further, DNA evidence is only as good as the people collecting, maintaining and analyzing it.

Then, the Guardian broke the story that the FBI has been granted the power to obtain from Verizon information from all calls made within the U.S. and between the U.S. and other countries from April 25 and July 19 of this year. Supposedly a tool to keep us safe from terrorism, the authorization for this type of spying on citizens who have done absolutely nothing was granted by the secret Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court through the USA Patriot Act’s “business records” provision.  While actual conversations are not covered, details including the phone numbers, location, duration, time and other identifiers about the callers are included in the order. Verizon has close to 100 million customers. We also have no way of knowing whether the NSA or FBI has sought similar orders of other phone companies, as all are prohibited from disclosing.

Just days later, the Guardian revealed that the NSA has obtained direct access to the systems of Google, Facebook, Apple and other US internet giants. Under a program called PRISM, the NSA collects our search histories, the content of our emails, file transfers, live chats and more.

These types of blanket surveillance are not only an invasion of privacy but also ineffective to do what the government claims. Someone has to analyze the tremendous amount of data collected from these records, the vast majority of which will be completely innocuous. Not a smart use of resources, I would argue.

Clearly, poet John Perry Barlow had it right: “Relying on the government to protect your privacy is like asking a peeping tom to install your window blinds.”  Those interested in a more peaceful and just world must become even more vocal advocates for privacy, what Justice William O. Douglas called “the beginning of all freedom.”

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

 

Downieville Lion’s Install Officers 6/12/13

6/5/13 The Downieville Lion’s Club installed the 2013-14 officers at the Old Sierra City Hotel  on Monday, June 10. Nevada City Lion Douglas Wight performed the Installation Ceremony.

Installed were President Mary Ervin, 1st VP Tom Potter, 2nd VP Julie Noll, Treasurer Ross Gordon, and Secretary Karen Galan, Immediate Past President Mike Galan was congratulated for his excellent year of service and he now serves on the Board of Directors.

Outgoing President Mike Galan, Doug Wight, Mary Ervin, Pam Gordon, Ross Gordon, Tom Potter, Julie Noll, Liz Fisher and Karen Galan

Outgoing President Mike Galan, Doug Wight, Mary Ervin, Pam Gordon, Ross Gordon, Tom Potter, Julie Noll, Liz Fisher and Karen Galan

Sierra County Sheriff Log 6/3 to 6/9/2013

SO Badge

Sierra County Sheriff’s Office Public Information Log

6/3/13

  • CHP requests ambulance for passed out driver on Hwy 395 Driver was subsequently arrested.
  • Caller reported being videotaped by another person
  • Very honest person reports he may have damaged USFS roads

6/4/13

  • Ambulance needed for elderly female in Loyalton
  • Another ambulance needed for another medical emergency
  • Single vehicle accident on Hwy 49 near Sattley with minor injuries
  • Alarm company reports medical alarm sounding in Loyalton residence

6/5/13

  • Subject was arrested on out of county warrant in Goodyears Bar
  • Illegal mining on property in Oregon Creek area near Pike
  • 9-1-1 hang up from Loyalton

6/6/13

  • Civil dispute file logged
  • Injured deer in roadway near Loyalton

6/7/13

  • Ill hiker reported on Pacific Crest Trail
  • Plumas Co reports 9-1-1 call from Loyalton
  • Injured male in Loyalton was hit with baseball bat
  • Report of open container driving in Downieville

6/8/13

  • 9-1-1 hangup call from Loyalton
  • Audible alarm sounding in Downieville
  • Abandoned vehicle in Loyalton will be towed
  • Two vehicles collided in Sierraville with no injuries
  • Mountain biker crashed on Packer Saddle
  • Broken window and stolen copper pipes in Sierra City
  • Male subject sleeping in highway near Sierraville
  • Welfare check on juvenile needed in Loyalton
  • Abandoned animals at vacant house in Loyalton
  • Arrest on out of county warrant in Loyalton
  • Vehicle parked illegally in the middle of Main St, Downieville

6/9/13

  • Pickup 50 feet down ravine on Dog Valley Rd, Verdi 
  • Two injured deer on Hwy 49 near Sierraville
  • Three baby birds fell from nest in Downieville
  • Rattlesnake bite to mountain biker near Downieville
  • Two at large canines chasing cattle near Loyalton
  • Bear breaking into residence in Downieville
  • Mining claim feud near LaPorte involves bringing out a firearm
  • Motorists blocking road for emergency vehicles
  • Lightning strike near Stampede Lake area
  • Canine attacking smaller canine in Loyalton
  • Non injury accident in Sierraville
  • Stranded canine on highway transported to owner in Sierraville
  • Lightning strike fire reported near Chicoot
  • Chanting to himself man came out of woods with gun
  • Shots were fired at raccoons attacking dog in Loyalton

 

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