The Joe Blow Report 2

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Posts Tagged ‘Arcata

The “self-appointed PC ayatollahs”

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When I read Tim Martin’s thoughts about a particular class of Arcatans I was struck by how easily he could be writing about a slew of local blogs and their resident commenters.

051614_T_MartinHere’s a thought: What color’s the sky in your world, Arcata?

Tim Martin Eureka – Times Standard
Posted:Sun May 18 01:18:36 MDT 2014 –  Times-Standard.com

I’ve never been accused of being a lackey for the Republican Party. To the contrary, I’ve been a loyal
supporter of Democrats since I was old enough to vote. But what I experienced during the 20 years I lived
in a college town has me wondering if, in the end, liberals are no different than their conservative
counterparts.

Talk to a passionate liberal in Arcata, say, a haughty former mayor or an arrogant ex-newspaper editor or
some like-minded individual with over-sensitive, myopic Pollyanna views and a superior attitude. They will
more than likely offer this lofty opinion of their citizenry: “Democrats are the most rational people in this
country. Republicans only care about themselves. They eat meat, don’t recycle or compost, and drive gas
guzzlers.” Blah, blah, blah, rag, rag, rag, get the picture?

Their complaints have become like Eminem lyrics that way.

Arcata is the most sanctimonious town in Northern California. It’s a hotbed of lofty musings and
self-deception. Many of its residents are as essentially naïve about the real world as George H.W. Bush
was when confronted with his first supermarket scanner.

Of course, not everyone in Arcata is bathed in a fine mist of bias and insensitivity. There are plenty of
residents untouched by HSU’s ivory-tower smugness. Yet a good number of those in charge — city
leaders and self-appointed PC ayatollahs — are mired in a self-righteous rut that runs roughshod over
such heinous criminals as cigarette smokers and tree-fallers and (gasp!) skateboarders. Their list of
dissatisfactions with anything right-wing related is nearly despair-grade.

Case in point: I recently wrote a column about the need for conservationists and the timber industry to
work together. You would have thought I had suggested slaying senior citizens. A few of my Facebook
friends (mostly Arcata residents) were choked with fury. One labeled me a “traitor.” Another person stated
that my recent move to Fortuna had turned me into “just another dumb redneck.”

Arcata government is so hilariously prone to arrogance that it has become immune to any sort of
self-awareness. The most influential among the ruling elite actually feel an obligation to project their
political views, gender bias, and moral authority on everyone else in the county. I have a suspicion that
this kind of snobbery takes place in every college town in the United States.

Sure, everyone does a little innocent judging from time to time, but the high command in Arcata takes it to
the limit. They paint with a broad brush and create feelings of anger and resentment in other Humboldt
residents. They want you to believe that conservatives eat their children, foreclose on your homes, and
put good people out of a job. They chastise anyone who doesn’t fit into their cultish, narrow-minded
perception of the universe that is Arcata.

These folks give higher education a bad name.

According to a poll by the New York Times, conservatives donate more to charity than liberals do. Believe
it or not, they also volunteer their time, give generously to their communities, and help feed the poor. Their
representatives are not immune from taking money from big-wig donors or free from the influence-peddling, but neither are liberal politicians. The truth is people are people. Not everyone who lives in Arcata is a long-haired, unemployed hippy. And not everyone who resides elsewhere in Humboldt County is a white-trash pickup-driving moron with a truck horn that plays “Dixie.”

Liberals and conservatives alike generalize. They are inclined to reduce people who have different
religious, environmental, political, and sexual beliefs into some type of caricature. It’s pathetic that after all
we’ve accomplished in the areas of civil rights, women’s rights and worker’s rights, we’re still divided by a
deep chasm of ignorance and mistrust. Even the most educated among us — those who teach at our local
colleges and lead our nation — are clueless as how to unite the people in this country.

I think it’s time for a call of honesty and wisdom of the heart from everyone. We can start by practicing
humbleness instead of preaching superiority. That’s the sign of a great leader, you know — humility.
Arcata’s most out-of-touch citizens might want to begin by wiping that condescending smirk off their faces,
stepping outside of town once-in-a-while, and developing a better understanding of those in their
community. You know, like blue-collar workers and conservative voters. We’re all negotiating the sea of
life here in Humboldt. And despite what one ex-town mayor might think, we’re not all dumb rednecks.

Tim Martin resides in Fortuna and writes this column for the Times-Standard.

–Joe

Gangster Government Rules

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Anyone really wonder why there is a spreading Occupy Movement willing to brave a modern-day Schutzstaffel? 


Had a story on the HWMA – ACRC fiasco, but it got lost among my more important comments and observation. With this latest news emanating from Humboldt Herald this seems like a good time to post something.

Can any member of the Eureka City Council, with a straight face, explain how their decision to contract with a Willit’s garbage company was a greater benefit to the local economy and need for good jobs? The fact is, they can’t. If they try to justify these consequence, as reported in the Wednesday, November 2, 2011, Times-Standard newspaper: ACRC (Arcata Community Recycling Center) to close its doors in January; about 35 employees will lose their jobs – they’re talking out of both sides of their face.

I didn’t even bother to consider the Humboldt Waste Management Authority when reviewing their history in this matter. While doing some further research on this matter I came across this from: LAST GASP: Arcata Community Recycling Center Sues Humboldt Waste Management Authority which also offers some history and strong-arm tactics used. You can take Hank Sim’s inferences for what their worth.

–Joe

Written by Joe Blow

November 15, 2011 at 8:26 pm

Help name Firedoglake’s Marijuana Legalization Campaign

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[UDATE Below]   

Here’s the latest Joe Blow Report contribution the Marijuana Legalization Campaign

The following is copied from the FireDogLake website:

user   

Late Nite FDL 4/20: “Name That Pot Campaign” Contest!

By: Jane Hamsher Tuesday April 20, 2010 8:02 pm

It’s been a few years since the last FDL Late Nite contest allowed our readers to display their skill at doggerel. Four to be exact.   

Long-time FDLers will remember that in 2006, the Vice President of the United States, Richard B. Cheney, shot Harry Whittington in the face and then refused to talk to the cops about it for a day.   In order to commemorate that notable event, we held the Dick Cheney poetry contest — or “Dickfest” as we called it.  Hundreds of entries were submitted, our readers voted, and the prize went to 88 for this poem:   

If epitaphs were polygraphs,
This, terse and edifying,
Would crown the veep in final sleep:
Here lies Big Time–still lying.   

Dickfest was immensely popular, inspiring art, a t-shirt line, and even imitators. Since that time, we haven’t felt that there has been a moment quite so poignantly appropriate to display the poetic prowess of our readers til now:  We need a great name for our marijuana campaign.   

Some suggested that we simply appropriate the “yes we cannabis” slogan that other campaigns have used, but after perusing a bunch of old High Times covers I became convinced that our readers, inspired by the subject matter, could easily surpass that. So here are the rules:   

  1. All entries must be submitted in the form below by 8pm ET tomorrow night.
  2. Slogan must be no longer than 5 words — should be able to fit on a bumper sticker or a t-shirt.
  3. Semi-final voting will begin tomorrow night at 8pm, when we’ll be here at Late Nite once again to let everyone know what the entries are. Voting will close at 8pm the following night.
  4. The top 10 vote getters will proceed to the finals on Thursday Night Late Night, and voting will continue through the weekend.
  5. We’ll announce the Gold, Silver and Bronze medalists at Late Nite a week from tonight.

Remember — the campaign is not aimed at babes in bikinis roller skating on the Venice boardwalk.  Well, not exclusively anyway.  When marijuana legislation goes on the ballot in November and beyond, many voters  are older and likely to be persuaded more by pragmatism than stoner puns. But, hell.  Who are we to limit anyone’s creativity.   

We’ll also use the winning slogan (or slogans, as the case may be) for the campaign, as well as on t-shirts, bumper stickers and whatever else we decide might be good for getting the message out.   

If you’re looking for inspiration, the Marijuana Policy Project has a series of informative short videos on YouTube, the Drug Policy Alliance has a page on myths & facts, Students for Sensible Drug Policy also has a fact sheet, and Law Enforcement Against Prohibition (LEAP) has great messaging on how the “War on Drugs” has backfired.   

We also have some special guests who have been working on drug policy for years who will be joining us in the comments.  So please help me welcome them as we celebrate 4/20 in fine FDL fashion.  It’s great to be back hosting Late Nite once again, and I’m looking forward to seeing the fruits of everyone’s personal 4/20 celebration in the comments.   

Submit your entries here — and remember, 5 words or less   

    


 
There’s a Times-Standard front-page article on the local celebration you can read here.   

Interesting commentary by the Arcata Police Chief, Tom Chapman:   

Reputation, and all that comes with it, is a big reason for the increased enforcement folks saw firsthand Tuesday.   

It’s not just this event, it’s everything the event brings with it. There’s an influx of people, and the town gets overrun,” Chapman said, adding that his department annually sees increases in petty theft, vandalism, illegal camping and public intoxication in the weeks leading up to April 20. “It’s a national draw. People travel to Arcata for 4/20, and that’s what we want to stop.    *******   

“The main thing we’re trying to accomplish is to make this an unattractive event.”   

That’s message is clear as crystal. Arcata City Government and local business don’t want “these kinds of people” coming to their community for no kind of frolic in the redwoods. The police obviously just don’t like these people and what they represent. When you consider the report of their activities that day, they were there to simply harass these people. Even the Police Chief had to acknowledge that what they were doing had limits. Specially when people bring their children into a war zone “in strollers”.   

“Reputation?” What’s he talking about? Whose reputation? His or Arcata’s?   

The War on Drugs has failed. Heavy-handed law enforcement with the objective to beat undesirable people into submission only breeds systemic failure. The tide has turned; people everywhere are fed-up with being ruled over and victimized by dictatorial, corrupt, stupid, arbitrary liars. More and more the police are forced to make a choice. Political and business leaders should take a lesson.   

–Joe   

[UPDATE :: Friday, April 23, 2010]   

There’s a considerable amount of chaffing among Americans the the “media,” in particular the news media is more partisan, too liberal, not news, but propaganda, etc. This Report has observed that the local news media hasn’t escaped this trap either. The biggest complaint we observe is the constant drumbeat of prejudice propaganda and not so subtle dictatorial, authoritarian commentary telling everyone how to think and what to believe.   

Kevin Hoover of the Arcata Eye, a weekly newspaper and Internet site recently took offense at my usage of the words: “people everywhere are fed-up with being ruled over and victimized by dictatorial, corrupt, stupid, arbitrary liars” he said I was applying to Arcata, CA. A critical read of his commentary will show a rather convoluted understanding of what the Report actually said. Notice my words, “people everywhere”? But then, Kevin Hoover went on in his comments to define those very words and identify the “local” problem when he demonstrated the very same attitude reported in the Time-Standard.  

So, when I read Glenn Greenwald’s, “Various Matters” post on Salon.com this morning it seemed appropriate to copy and repost here. There are some other good commentary, but this one seems appropriate locally.  To show the comparative similarity the words “Humboldt County” were added in parenthesis.  


  

(6) Every now and then there are little vignettes that capture what Washington really is:  an insular, incestuous, fundamentally corrupt royal court, populated — as all sickly imperial capitals are — by political and media courtesans and other hangers-on.  One such vignette was a recent New York Magazine profile of Liz Cheney and her circle of friends, adeptly excerpted by Susan Gardner, which is well worth reading.  Another was just provided by Mark Leibovich in his fawning New York Times Magazine profile of his good friend, the Supreme-stenographer-servant to the powerful, Mike Allen of Politico:   

On a recent Friday night, a couple hundred influentials gathered for a Mardi Gras-themed birthday party for Betsy Fischer, the executive producer of “Meet the Press.” Held at the Washington home of the lobbyist Jack Quinn, the party was a classic Suck-Up City affair in which everyone seemed to be congratulating one another on some recent story, book deal, show or haircut (and, by the way, your boss is doing a swell job, and maybe we could do an interview).   

McAuliffe, the former Democratic National Committee chairman, arrived after the former Republican National Committee chairman Ed Gillespie left. Fox News’s Greta Van Susteren had David Axelrod pinned into a corner near a tower of cupcakes. In the basement, a very white, bipartisan Soul Train was getting down to hip-hop. David Gregory, the “Meet the Press” host, and Newsweek’s Jon Meacham gave speeches about Fischer. Over by the jambalaya, Alan Greenspan picked up some Mardi Gras beads and placed them around the neck of his wife, NBC’s Andrea Mitchell, who bristled and quickly removed them. Allen was there too, of course, but he vanished after a while — sending an e-mail message later, thanking me for coming.   

 If you ever find yourself wondering why there’s so little adversarial journalism and accountability for crimes and corruption in Washington (Humboldt County), just read Gardner’s post and that above passage.  Beltway denizens play various assigned roles — this one reads from the Journalist script, that one poses as a legislator, this one’s a Democrat and that one’s a Republican, the one over there is a regulator, this one is a lobbyist, etc. — but they all feed from the same trough, and their sole allegiance is to their decadent, insular, endlessly nepotistic, and deservedly dying pseudo-aristocratic culture, and to one another.  Chris Hayes captured the point nicely this week in a spontaneous one-minute television outburst.  

Any lessons learned here?

Police Safety and The Camera

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361px-PolicemanThe statement is made by Thadeus Greenson in his Sunday, May 31, 2009 Times-Standard newspaper article: “Photographer to stand trial in homeless case” that “When Officer Marsolan saw him cross the street and move closer to the officers, endangering them, Officer Dickson assisted in taking VonZabern into custody.” How is taking pictures of these police officers constitute the crime of “obstructing an officer”?  How does someone with a camera interfere with what the police are doing?

I did some research on photographing the police and found this telling bit of information on Flex Your Rights :: Protect Your Constitutional Rights During Police Encounters that explains our questions:

16. Can I be arrested for videotaping or photographing police?

Videotaping or photographing police in public places is usually legal, so long as you don’t interfere with their activities. Nonetheless, doing so will often get you arrested.

Police don’t like to be watched or documented in any way, so they’ll sometimes bend the rules to stop you. We’ve heard many stories about people who got arrested for taping police, and the charges are usually dropped. If you’re taping or photographing police, make sure you don’t interfere, because “obstruction” is the most likely charge, and you’ll want to be able to defend against it.

Despite the risk of arrest, we don’t discourage the taping and photographing of police. Video evidence is uniquely effective in exposing police misconduct. If you acquire video or photographic evidence that warrants an official investigation, create and secure copies of the evidence, then forward it to local police monitoring groups such as civilian review boards, ACLU, and NAACP chapters. You should also obtain legal representation for yourself in case the police department retaliates against you.

The complete Times-Standard article:

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