Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Another Plant Being Made Illegal

Forbes magazine tells us  of plans by the Drug Enforcement Agency to list a currently legal plant as a schedule 1 drug- akin to heroin and such.

The Kratom plant's leaves are sold variously places with their teas giving a short lived peaceful and calm feeling. What's wrong with that is anyone's guess.

Maybe with marijuana legalization sentiment picking up steam, the DEA needs to find something else to go after?

Addendum: I see Kratom is available online. Here's one site with some information about it. 

The Borg Likely On The Way

National Public Radio reports Russian astronomers have picked up an unusual signal from outer space. It seems to be coming from a solar system known as HD 164595. That's 94 light years from us, which means it would take us 94 years to reach that system traveling at the speed of light. 

But that shouldn't bring comfort to us. The Borg can make that trip real fast. You know what's happening here, don't you? The Borg have been sitting out there for millenia listening and finally detected Earth signals. They're probably preparing to attack as I type this.

We're doomed, although at least I won't have to go to work if assimilated...or will I?

Tuesday, August 30, 2016

They're baaaack...:The Clowns

Any of you remember clown scares back in your youth? I do. When I was in elementary school in Tustin the rumor started that there was a clown out and about. He'd entice kids and take them off to do who knows what with them.

I believed it and everyone at school was talking about it. They said he was last seen in a drainage ditch that ran alongside our school. I swear you hear that stuff often enough you believe you saw him. 

But I never did see him, thank God. Scary times, but I guess they aren't over. Reason magazine tells us of other current clown scares in the U.S. and around the world.

Dealing With Wasted Vote Concerns

The Wall Street Journal reports on a new campaign strategy that helps voters unhappy with their party's presidential choice trade votes with someone from another party that feels the same way. The idea being you don't like Trump, you go to the web site and find a Democrat that doesn't like Clinton. Then both agree to vote third party:

“You can’t vote third-party ‘cause for Republicans that’s a vote for Hillary and for Democrats it’s a vote for Trump,” the character explains, “so you stick with the candidate you don’t like to stop the one you hate, splitting the nation in two.”

The idea makes sense, assuming you can trust the other guy to vote third party and not just trick you into "wasting your vote". Anybody here want to give it a try?

Dems Win Big In New Voter Registration Numbers

Calwatchdog tallies up the latest state voter registration numbers for us.  The Democrats got the biggest gain with 700,000 new voters, beating the Republican Party gain of 130,000. 

They point out the American Independent Party came in tops for third parties at 454,946. I pointed out in their comments that the AIP's large numbers are mostly the result of people checking the AIP box on the voter registration card in the mistaken belief that makes them an "independent". Oh well. No harm done, I suppose. 

I read somewhere a while back that most "independent" voters (actually Decline To State) vote the same way they always did. I tend to believe they just register DTS so they don't feel they have to share the blame for whatever screw ups the candidate they vote for gets involved in.


Lucille Ball's First Home

This just in from the MeTV Facebook page: The first home ever bought by Lucille Ball is up for sale for 1.75 million. Interested? Want to move to Hollywood? Nice place but don't know that I'd want to live in Hollywood.

Like The MeTV Facebook Page

Any other old TV show fans out there? I like some of the old shows better than I do modern ones. As a result, we end up watching the MeTV network at home quite a bit. MeTV stands for Memorable Television, and it is. A regular in this household is the old Andy of Mayberry show.

Another old show I've always enjoyed is Gilligan's Island, but that's always on past my bedtime so, the other day I decided to contact MeTV and ask them if they could schedule it earlier so I could watch it (I know. Fat chance). Then a friend recommended I just record the shows. DUH!!! Why didn't I think of that?

It's probably been years since I recorded a TV show. Probably because there's so many shows on now there doesn't seem to be much need to. Still, I'll have to see if our old VHS recorder still works and is connected right. I want to go on that three hour tour again.

I'm actually glad I signed on with that MeTV Facebook page. They post any number of quizzes about old TV shows. This one, for instance, where you guess the show after just viewing one freeze frame. I enjoy those quizzes, my only complaint being they often take a while to finish.

Just a suggestion for old TV fans: Add the MeTV Facebook page to your Facebook groups. A fun page to sign up for. 

Oh, and the latest from MeTV: Barney Fife's girlfriend on Andy of Mayberry, Thelma Louise, turned 90 yesterday. I wouldn't have recognized her from the current photo they showed. She lives in Mt. Airy, North Carolina now. Mt. Airy was Andy Griffith's inspiration for the town of Mayberry.

Monday, August 29, 2016

Where Do California Pols Stand On Legal MJ?

The Sacramento Bee asked some statewide politicians in California where they stood on legal marijuana- in the case, the Adult Use Of Marijuana Act which will be on the November ballot. It's too much trouble to name names so I'll just give my count from the article:

For legalization: 5
No on legalization: 2
Maybe: 6

The Maybe votes are derived from those that didn't seem comfortable with it but wouldn't give a firm answer.

Congressman Dana Rohrabacher gave an explanation for his Yes vote I don't understand more "conservatives" making:

 “Our current marijuana laws have undermined many of the things conservatives hold dear – individual freedom, limited government and the right to privacy.

You would think that would be a no- brainer for conservatives.
 more here:

The 25 Worst Cars

I stumbled on to this list of the 25 worst cars ever made and had to take a look. I won't argue with their choices but I don't believe I've ever seen any but maybe four of them:  The Ford Excursions I see fairly often. The Jeep Compass, although I probably mistook the Cherokee for one.  The Smart cars- I see someone driving one of those in Eureka now and again, and the Hummer H2, although I can't imagine why someone would want one of those.

If you have one of the cars on the list, fess up, and feel free to defend it.

Sunday, August 28, 2016


The Santa Rosa Press- Democrat does a surprisingly even handed story on those leaving California and moving to the "American Redoubt"- Idaho, in the featured couples case, where people known as  "preppers" are moving to get away from the decadence of California and preparing for the end of life as we know it. It sounds as if they've created their own version of Libertopia.

Wish I could join them, although I don't know that I'd want to move any further north. And that assumes I'd have the means to move. I did know a guy who moved to Idaho years ago. Last I heard from him he lived hundreds of miles from any paved road, but was loving it. Charles Gordon was his name. He used to work at the HSU library.

The U.S. vs. Russia

I've never heard of The National Interest before now, but they present a pretty lucid view of U.S./Russian relations. While the title of the story emphasizes Hillary Clinton, who they point out is a bigger threat to peace with Russia, most of the article takes a common sense view of international relations and points out common interests we might have with them:

 "Moreover, U.S. and Russian interests on a variety of important issues, including counterterrorism, coincide more than they conflict—a point that Trump correctly emphasized in his most recent foreign-policy address. Consequently, maintaining cooperative relations with Moscow makes good strategic sense."

A pleasure to read when we're regularly inundated by both the Left and Right with cries for military intervention.

Let Kids Be Kids

Reading Tim Martin's column in the Times- Standard today, it reads like he grew up much as I did: pretty much left to do his thing, unless he got too out of hand. Ahhhh... back in the day, when I used to walk a couple miles to junior high school, yet I have an inlaw that drives her kids just a few blocks to school. Back when kids were allowed to be kids.

On weekends friends and I would get on our bikes- no helmets- and ride miles out of town, then sneak onto Irvine Company land to go explore their reservoirs. Nowadays, parents would probably have the police at their door for allowing such unsupervised activities.

What went wrong, as Martin asks: 

  Why are things so different today? Maybe parents in the 1950s didn’t have time to helicopter over their offspring like they do now. Or maybe expectations were greater for children who grew up to become Baby Boomers. More than likely, though, the problem is tied into our “politically correct” culture. Today’s parents freak out if their child accidentally breaks a window or is involved in an innocent schoolyard scuffle. They’ve become so obsessed with what’s appropriate and socially acceptable that it’s taken over their lives and the lives of their children.

Funny reading that from a lefty, but nice to see and I'm sure many of us wonder what went wrong. Maybe we just worry too much?

This Year: 70th Anniversary, Closing of the Camps

The Sacramento Bee reminds us that 70 years ago we closed down all the World War 2 internment camps- those camps being used to house Japanese who were deemed at the time a security risk to the country.  The Bee also tells the story of Mitsuye Endo, a Japanese girl interned but who went on to challenge the constitutionality of the internments all by her little lonesome, keeping herself interned because of it. I'll agree with The Bee, The late (she died in 2006) Ms. Endo probably does deserve the Medal of Freedom.

I've been told that Camp Parks, down near Pleasanton, CA used to be an internment camp. No barbed wire now, though. Head on down there if you want to get a taste of it, except now it's just military style barracks and a federal prison where Patty Hearst was held back in the day.

Saturday, August 27, 2016

Reasons For High Prescription Drug Prices

The Los Angeles Daily News explains why U.S. prescription drug prices remain so high:

"The “most important factor” that drives prescription drug prices higher in the United States than anywhere else in the world is the existence of government-protected “monopoly” rights for drug manufacturers, researchers at Harvard Medical School said this week."

There we go with government created, and enforced, monopolies again.

New Birth Control Pill Legislation

The Sacramento Bee reports on a bill headed to Governor Brown that will increase the allowed purchase of birth control pills. Currently the limit is a three month supply. This legislation will increase the limit to a one year supply. The bill's author, Fran Pavley, says, Increasing access to birth control is good for women, families and the health of our state,”

Maybe so but, setting aside arguments for or against how many of the pills women should be able to buy at one time, I have to ask why this should be government business in the first place? How much medication one buys should be one's personal business, especially in regards birth control pills.

This is a good example that when you give the government a hammer, everything ends up looking like a nail.

Read more here:

Arcata Plaza's Free Wifi: Thumbs Down

Why does it piss me off that Arcata now offers free wifi on their plaza, as Lost Coast Outpost reports? Maybe I'm just an old curmudgeon. Not maybe. I am one, but that doesn't mean I don't have valid reasons for it.

Like this free wifi. It should be no skin off my ass, but I don't like seeing the gimme more free stuff crowd being appeased.

It also seems odd to me this free wifi was installed with no apparent opposition from the local hysterical environmentalists. After all, don't they come out in droves to protest just about every new cell phone tower proposal? Is there all that much difference between wifi and cell phone radiation? Didn't Green Party presidential candidate Jill Stein declare wifi a potential health hazard? You would think Arcatans would be leaving town in droves.

But nope, the gimme folks win again. The best we can say is it's been paid for by someone other than those of us in Eureka. Let's hope the county doesn't go down this same road. And those proposing universal wifi are usually the same ones opposing all the cell phone towers.

Friday, August 26, 2016

Journalists For War

I don't believe I've ever heard of this John Pilger fellow before but he has a nice piece on how the media helps bring about war. While he makes it read like it's deliberate deception on the part of news media, he doesn't mention that media get most of their info from the White House or the Pentagon, at least in our case. The same is most certainly true across the globe.

I see he also has a blog. I've added it to my blog list.

Feeling Insecure? Calm Down

Over at Reason magazine, Steve Chapman takes a calming view of the supposed things threatening us. He points out we faced bigger threats in the past:

" Americans have come through more perilous straits than any visible now. But our past seems to have conditioned him and many of his fellow citizens to detect grave danger where it doesn't exist."

California Starts State Run Retirement System For Everyone

Calwatchdog reports the state legislature is working on starting a state run retirement system for everyone. It looks like contributions to the fund will be made by workers through their employers with an opt out clause for those who don't want to participate.

When you consider the way public emplooyee pensions have come close to bankrupting some cities, I don't think this will end well, although I realize it's not the same thing as the public employee's retirement system. So long as there's an opt out for those preferring to handle their own retirements, one good thing is it gets younger folks to think about their retirement savings early on, when they should. 

And, to be fair, it looks as if individual investor's money is all that is at stake here, a least at first glance. The taxpayer's at large would be off the hook, or so we're lead to believe.

Back when I had an individual retirement account (now gone to pay medical bills) I developed an interest in investments and such. I was dismayed to run into people, some a bit older than me that had no idea how to start a retirement account. This might help with that to some extent. If nothing else, it gets the retirement account started for those not knowing how although the reliance on government to guide them is not a good thing.

We'll see how this ends up working, if it gets passed into law. If it turns into a mess, as with other government run retirement programs, you read about it first here.

Good News For Vapers

From the Rest of the Story blog, Dr. Siegel tells us of an older study by the Roswell Park Cancer Institute that showed "... smokers who switch to e-cigarettes experience an immediate and drastic reduction in their levels of carcinogens and toxins."

I'm surprised Dr. Siegel describes the study as "new". As one of the comments pointed out, the study dates to 2011. But it was one of the first studies as one of those who did the study pointed out:
Dr. Maciej Goniewicz, Assistant Professor of Oncology in the Department of Health Behavior at Roswell Park - concluded: "To our knowledge, this is the first study with smokers to demonstrate that substituting tobacco cigarettes with electronic cigarettes may reduce exposure to numerous toxicants and carcinogens present in tobacco cigarettes. This study suggests that smokers who completely switch to e-cigarettes and stop smoking tobacco cigarettes may significantly reduce their exposure to many cancer-causing chemicals."

What the date of the study does show is what sort of information is ignored by the Food and Drug Administration, most likely because it goes contrary to their agenda. You can bet the FDA will continue to equate e- cigarettes with smoking tobacco. Heck, they already do.

Thursday, August 25, 2016

False Weather Alerts?

I realize forecasting weather isn't an exact science, but I wonder if I should have signed up for a weather alert list. Not sure if this is from the weather service, or the weather channel, but I received thie one below later in the day yesterday. When they say "red flag warning issued", it makes you think things are going to get interesting, but nothing has happened that I'm aware of- no strong winds anyway:

"Red Flag Warning issued August 25 at 12:04AM PDT until August 25 at 11:00AM PDT by NWS Eureka
Services Description
This service is provided at no cost to you.

1. Severe Weather Alerts that include current radar, weather conditions and forecast links.
2. In addition to alerts you may also receive daily AM and PM forecast information with a separate option to unsubscribe."

A Look At Heidi Messner

The Times- Standard takes a look at Ward 2 Eureka City Councilgal by default, Heidi Messner- her getting the seat after the other candidates dropped out of the race. Oh well, reading what the paper says about her, it seems she's well aligned with the Forces of Niceness. 

As I wrote earlier, she's easy on the eyes, too- hey, at least it's not some ugly old guy like me. Only time will tell, but she should be a fine addition to the council.

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Matt Owen's Ward Voting System Rant

Matt Owen's latest commentary in the Lost Coast Outpost deals with proposals to change Eureka's local elections to the ward system. He even mentions me in it. Awww....shucks. He even goes on to explain why he dropped out of the Eureka City Council race. Good stuff.

In regards the Eureka City Council race, the Times- Standard looks at two current candidates, John Fullerton and Auston Allison. Allison is quoted as saying he wants to "...create more family wage jobs in the area". I have to wonder if that means he wants to try to create a higher minimum wage for Eureka? In which case he won't be on my list of those to vote for.

Bringing jobs with good wages to the city is one thing. Trying to force businesses to pay more in wages is another thing entirely. 

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Shipwreck On Camera Now

I just checked the Nautilus' remote vehicle camera at 1:57 pacific time and it seems to be showing a shipwreck. It has a bunch of coral type growths on it that I can't help but think someone made and put there- little clay creations if you will. They have a field below the video screen to ask questions, so I asked if all corals look so man made. Not sure how they answer although you can hear the crew talking amongst each other. Maybe they'll talk to me?

See the live feed here. Sorry if you're too late but it should show something. Yesterday it just showed a bunch of dark water, way deep.

The Cuban Missle Crisis

Remember the Cuban Missile Crisis. I do and remember going through the nuclear attack drills in elementary school, although I had no real understanding of the reasons for them. Here's a more detailed version of the Cuban Missile Crisis with some things I hadn't read before.

Monday, August 22, 2016

A Global Warming Defector

Hal Lewis, considered one of the top scientists at the University of California has resigned his position at least in large part by the corruption (his words) involved in what he calls the global warming scam:

" It is of course, the global warming scam, with the (literally) trillions of dollars driving it, that has corrupted so many scientists, and has carried APS before it like a rogue wave. It is the greatest and most successful pseudoscientific fraud I have seen in my long life as a physicist."

Blazing Saddles

Target Liberty (never heard of that one before) takes a politcal look at the old comedy Blazing Saddles. They might be right that the movie would never be produced nowadays. It is interesting that a movie so many people enjoyed was not well thought of by producers. 

As far as it being so funny, call me socially retarded. I didn't think it was very funny. Sorry.

Explaining Marijuana's Government Classification

Reason's Jacob Sullum does a pretty good job of explaining why marijuana is classified by the government as the same sort of drug as heroin or methamphetamine. If reading it has you thinking the whole thing is nonsensical, that's because it is.

Private vs. Government Disaster Relief

The Foundation for Economic Education tells the story of private relief efforts in Louisiana's floods. It seems Facebook played a fairly significant role, along with Walmart, although I wonder how Facebook would be usable if you don't have power?

Sunday, August 21, 2016

Sign the Gun Rights Referendum

Just in time, a petition is circulating to invalidate all the gun laws passed by the legislature this year. There's mention on this site of a downloadable petition, but I couldn't find it. In Eureka, you can stop by Anglin Second Hand on Broadway which is a designated signature gathering site. That's where I'm going tomorrow. Hopefully I can sign before Julie Timmons does.


There goes the neighborhood. Not sure where this picture was taken but that's me on the left back when I moved to Eureka.  I was thinking '73ish, but my sister says '71. The guy in the middle is Jim Broughton, the guy I moved up here with. To his left is my brother John, now a  retired Episcopalian priest.

Changing Position on Prop 67

I didn't catch it until I was trying to update the LP of Humboldt County web page, but there's another ballot measure I'll be voting contrary to LP California's recommendations. 

Prop 67, dealing with plastic shopping bags, is actually a referendum. That means you'll be approving or rejecting a past action of the state legislature. In this case they banned the use of plastic shopping bags. Let's see if I get this right: A Yes vote says the legislative action remains in force. A No vote repeals the legislature's action, at least I think that's right. I get confused with referendums. 

Regardless, I'll keep an eye on this one and vote to repeal the action by the legislature, whether that means a Yes or No vote.

Addendum: From a California Catholic Conference web site:

 "Proposition 67 is a referendum that asks voters if they wish to uphold or overturn the law passed by the Legislature that outlaws plastic bags.  A "yes" vote on Proposition 67 means the statewide ban on plastic bags will go into effect.  A "no" vote on Proposition 67 means the statewide ban on plastic bags will not become law." 

I guess that means a No vote is in order. 

Saturday, August 20, 2016

Peaceful Muslims

Interesting story in the Mint Press about a large Muslim get together in Britain geared toward peace. Something not often heard by those of us, myself included, who vilify them. Last time I read anything from Mint Press, it was a supposed eye witness account of a staged chemical attack by Syrian rebels. I thought the scenario quite plausible but couldn't find any information on Mint Press and began to wonder if it was a Soviet propaganda site.

U.S. Government Our Biggest Threat

This fellow from the Future of Freedom Foundation does a good job of pointing out why the U.S. government is a bigger threat to our lives and freedom than any forces from the outside.

"U.S. Out of Humboldt County"- seen on numerous bumper stickers around the county every now and then

Follow Along With Ballard's Nautilus

The Santa Rosa Press- Democrat tells us that famed ocean explorer Robert Ballad will be on an expedition off the Mendocino Coas tonight to find the wreck of the S.S. Dorothy Whitmore which sank in 1938 near Point Arena. If you'd like to follow along and see what their remote control vehicle sees, there's a live feed at

I just went there and the camera seems to be on. It shows the rear of the Nautilus with the wake behind it as it cruises along.

LP of California Positions on 2016 Ballot Initiatives

The Libertarian Party of California's State Executive Committee met on August 6, to take positions on the November ballot propositions. I get a little miffed sometimes with LP CA when they do this. Mostly because they'll take positions on issues that are really irrelevant to individual liberty or good government, I see nothing wrong with taking No Position when there's nothing to be lost or gained with a given initiative- That one a few years ago that changed how we realigned districts, for example. I see they actually took No Position on Prop 59 that advisory vote on Citizen' United. Good for them, although I'm not sure what a Yes or No vote would mean on that, at least not yet.
This year it looks pretty good. I haven't thought about most of these much but I'll go along with the exception of Prop 64, Adult Use of Marijuana. They recommend No, saying it would make things worse than the status quo. I'm tempted to vote Yes on it. So, here's your marching orders for the November election.  I'll expect you all to follow their recommendations to the letter: 

Addendum: I see from the Secretary of State's web page Prop 59 shall be known as the Repeal Citizen's United Act. I guess I'll be voting No on that one.

Proposition 51 – NO – School bonds
Proposition 52 – NO – State fees on hospitals
Proposition 53 – YES – Voting on revenue bonds
Proposition 54 – YES – Legislative transparency
Proposition 55 – NO – Income tax hike extension
Proposition 56 – NO – Cigarette tax increase
Proposition 57 – YES – Parole for non-violent felons
Proposition 58 – NO – Changes in bilingual education methods
Proposition 59 – No Position – Advisory vote on Citizens United repeal
Proposition 60 – NO – Condoms required for adult film actors
Proposition 61 – NO – State prescription drug purchases
Proposition 62 – YES – End the Death Penalty in California
Proposition 63 – NO – Extensive new gun control measures
Proposition 64 – NO – Adult Use of Marijuana Act (AUMA)
(While the Libertarian Party has been a strong supporter of ending marijuana prohibition for over 40 years, this proposition does more harm than good, damaging medical availability, and creating additional criminal offenses and regulations.)
Proposition 65 – NO – Directs grocery bag money to wildlife fund
Proposition 66 – NO – Makes death penalty easier
Proposition 67 – NO – Grocery stores can’t provide plastic bags (referendum)

Friday, August 19, 2016

The Poor Victim Veterans

More news on the ongoing conspiracy to keep veterans in their victim class. Popular reports veterans might soon be able to order things from online exchanges. Not post exchanges or what we called PXs back then. Just online.

I'm not sure but I think the main benefit of shopping through military exchanges is you don't pay state sales tax. I'll have to check the online commissaries once this situation is resolved. But, why not walk in type commissaries? You can bet it's just another effort by da man to keep the veterans down.

I feel like such a victim and I was only in the National Guard.

Legislators Mull Legalizing Child Prostitution

The Los Angeles Times reports on one of the few times our state legislature seems to have some courage and common sense. They're trying to end penalties for juvenile prostitutes and place them under "dependent children" status- under the control of Child Welfare Services in other words.

Why do I say they have courage? Because generally legislators fear dealing with the issue in this manner. They seem to feel if they support decriminalization of prostitution, everyone else will think they render themselves to the services of prostitutes.

That fear probably isn't too far fetched. I might have brought up here before the comments made on a Libertarian Party Facebook page. Someone asked how Republican Rand Paul felt about legalizing prostitution (though that shouldn't be a presidential issue). Someone else replied he's probably opposed to it since Paul was married. I had to point out just because someone might be supportive of others freedom, doesn't mean he engages in the behavior himself. The fact that Paul is married shouldn't have anything to do with it.

What's particularly striking about this effort is it involves juvenile prostitution and when kids are involved, people often lose their perspective and simply act on emotion.

It would be nice to see this effort extended to adult prostitution, where it probably should have started.

Thursday, August 18, 2016

That's The Point

When Otters Attack

Some of you might have heard of a couple kids that got attacked by otters in Lake Shasta. The Sacramento Bee titled their link to this video, " Video: Dad Describes Otter Attack" or something along that line. I was disappointed in what I found as I expected video of the actual attack. It does have a voiceover of the father telling what happened but it's more of a slide show showing photos of the kids with some- admittedly cute- pictures of otters.

Sally, if you don't follow this link, you're fired from this blog again.

Floods Not Caused By Man

The Daily Signal looks at Al Gore's claims that recent flooding in the nation was caused by climate change. They also look at a couple climate scientists that say it wasn't:

 "But is man-made global warming to blame? Climatologists Patrick Michaels and Paul Knappenberger point to two recent studies that indicate not."

I wonder if those two will get the same treatment as global warming scientist Judith Curry who was vilified by Believers when she questioned some assumptions being made? She's persona non- grata among Believers now from what I've read.

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

California's 10 Most Dangerous Cities

Contrary to local things I've read about Eureka being in the top ten of California's most dangerous cities this list doesn't include any Humboldt towns or cities.

Addendum: This different list shows Eureka as number 2.

Time magazine Does Gary Johnson

Time magazine allowed Libertarian Party presidential candidate Gary Johnson to write about himself and his campaign. Nicely done, much to my surprise.

Chemtrails and Squirrels

Since Earth/Sky News is reporting it, it must be the final word on chemtrails- those streaks behind jets, proof of a massive conspiracy to spray the planet, don't exist- at least the conspiracy doesn't. For Believers, there's still room for skepticism as the Earth/Sky folks seem to be Believers in global warming, too.

Here's a video of cameras attached to a squirrel so you can see what things look like from their point of view as they scurry through the trees, also from Earth/Sky News.

Tuesday, August 16, 2016

Court Ruling Get Feds Out of State Pot Enforcement

Finally some good news. keeping in mind it ain't over 'til it's over: According to Cannabis Now magazine, the 9th Circuit Court just ruled the federal government can't get involved in marijuana enforcement or prosecution that runs contrary to state law, at least that's how I"m reading it. So, if the state says it's ok to grow pot for recreational purposes, the feds can't come in and make arrests. 

Sounds great, but I don't think we've heard the last of this. For one thing, I read somewhere the 9th Circuit Court is, if not the most, than one of the most reversed courts in the country. That, and I can see a lot of energy being put into bringing this before the Supreme Court. It's too much an affront to federal power for the Obama Administration to just let it slide. If it does end up before the Supremes, I would expect them to rule on behalf the feds as they often do.

Enjoy it while you can, folks.

Addendum: I just noticed Forbes magazine has a slightly different take on this in an article by Reason Editor, Jacob Sullum. I don't have time to read the whole article now. It would cut into my drinking time, but those of you that do read it, feel free to comment. And who'da thunk our very own Lost Coast Outpost would get mentioned toward the end of the article?

Conservatives Are From Mars?

Reason's Nick Gillespie takes a look at Republicans upset about the interest the Libertarian Party, and its candidates, are getting this election and that the LP isn't doing more to court them. He does a good job of taking them to task. For instance, pointing out their ire with Trump is because the positions he takes are too conservative:

" Now in 2016, the Republican Party, the conservatives' own party, has an absolutely incompetent, inexperienced idiot as its presidential nominee. Sucks to be them. Recall that even when criticizing Donald Trump in the strongest terms possible, National Review attacked the billionaire crybaby for not being tough enough on immigration"

State Freedom Rankings

Cato Institute, along with the Mercatus Center recently graded all the states in regards how free they are- specifically regarding land-use regulation, victimless crimes, and occupational licensing, but also in providing high-level reform ideas.

The most free? New Hampshire, Alaska, Oklahoma, Indiana, and South Dakota

And it should be no surprise that California lies within the least free: New York, California, and Hawaii; New Jersey and Maryland.

The article points out that freedom doesn't necessarily guarantee a lack of outward migration from those states. I'm not surprised as I've felt for some time this country and its people are becoming more authoritarian every day. Then again, it's easy to feel that way living in California.

Monday, August 15, 2016

Highlights of the A.U.M.A

Interesting info from the Marijuana Politics newsletter. Twenty one items that are part of the Adult Use of Marijuana Act are listed. Nice to finally see them but I'm still confused if this is better or worse than the status quo?

Debra Saunders Supports Legal Pot

I was surprised to see San Francisco Chronicle columnist, Debra Saunders, put out a nice argument in support of the Adult Use of Marijuana Act. Not surprised that she made a good argument. It just seemed to me she usually takes a knee jerk conservative point of view. Not so this time. Total common sense.

My New Cell Phone

I probably mentioned before my so- called smartphone pooped out on me a month or so ago, and that's after only using it a month or two. All of the sudden it started giving No Service messages no matter where I was, even at home.

I started using my old LG flip phone, which is actually very reliable and, for some reason, I even got a cell phone signal in places the smart phone wouldn't work- the wilderness between Willits and Scotia, for instance.

But the wife wouldn't go for that. Once I indicate any interest in getting something new, she won't let it drop. It's like her main priority is buying whatever I might want.

So yesterday she had a Target ad with a couple inexpensive cell phones. I didn't seem too interested in them but went to the Tracfone site to see what they had. I settled on this Alcatel One Touch Pixie Glitz for $20.00. I had misgivings
since it was the same brand name as my now pooped out smartphone and, at $20.00, you can't help but wonder if you get what you pay for. Free shipping, though.

One problem I realized is, with a name like that (pixie glitz) that guy on TV is gonna find out and say "Yeah, that's gay". Oh well.

That's it on the left. It doesn't look all that different than my old phone and has many of the same features.

KMUD RAdio and The Veteran's Asminisstration

I was listening to KMUD radio yesterday afternoon- Bud Rogers' (I thought) Edge of the Herd show to be specific I wasn't paying too much attention although I did notice he didn't seem to be presenting conspiracy theories as much as he usually does. Then, towards the end of the show, he got into something which had me very annoyed.

He had a guest on, whose name escapes me. The guest brought up some issues with Veteran's Administration health care. He went on the say there was an effort afoot to "privatize" the V.A. By way of example he pointed to an I.D. card sent to veterans recently that would require them to see a private practice if they needed medical attention.

I recently signed on with the V.A. health care system and received one of those cards the other day. It does not require you to see a private practitioner. It simply gives you the option to see a local doctor instead of driving hundreds of miles

I'll admit to not completely understanding the accompanying letter but it seemed to say if you had to travel more than 40 miles to visit a V.A. health facility, the card would allow you to see a local private practitioner and, I assume, the V.A. would pick up the tab.

That should be an improvement in anyone's book. As it is now you might have to go to the V.A. facility in San Francisco, not all that far from UCSF where we already regularly go. Another thing Rogers' guest didn't mention is that, even if you do have to go the hundreds of miles to an out of town facility, the V.A. reimburses you for travel expenses- $240.00 for a trip to San Francisco, so I've been told. Hardly something to complain about and hardly amounting to veterans in the system being victims.

I was so pissed off listening to the guy I almost called in, but then I would have actually talked to somebody.

The guest also insisted private health care was more expensive which I doubt is true. Premiums for the Affordable Care Act- Obamacare as it's commonly known- have gone up by a third this last year. I know mine have, but it's still affordable for me.

He also insisted V.A. health care was substandard, which is contrary to nearly everything I've heard. Most in the know have told me "they're pretty good".

I didn't see much truth in anything the guest said but Bud Rogers played along making it akin to some conspiracy against  veterans. I get pretty fed up with hearing the whining from these supposed victims who, from what I've seen so far, get a pretty good deal. I can tell more in September after I've been to their facility in San Francisco. I do know their new headquarters at the Eureka Mall seems nice enough, security guards and all.

Veterans are not victims, despite what some want you to believe. I'd say health care for life is a pretty good deal. You won't see me complaining, at least not yet.

Sunday, August 14, 2016

Santa Rosa Seeks #1 Position For Pot Industry

The City of Santa Rosa thinks it's well positioned to be the top dog in legal marijuana according to the Santa Rosa Press- Democrat.

Would You Buy A Used Mattress?

The Lost Coast Outpost advises us a hotel in Valley West is selling its used mattresses. I don't know that I'd go for that. Like most, I don't want to sleep on other peoples grime. Then again, I sleep on used mattresses every time I stay in a motel.

I decided the mattresses at the Villa Inn in San Rafael were the most comfortable I'd ever slept on. The wife seemed to agree although she doesn't remember that now. I asked the manager what kind of mattresses they used. He told me Serta brand. 

I wondered if I could buy mattresses like that locally so looked up the Serta web site. Much to my surprise, the Serta site had a search tool, saying if you loved the mattress at a certain hotel they'd let you know what kind of mattress they sold them. 

I tried it and it gave me a quick answer although the name was too long to remember. Something like the ******hospitality mattress. Hospitality likely meaning sold to hotels only. But they did give a price and had an order form. The price of over $2000, if I remember correectly, was a bit much for us but it got me to wondering if there might be a more homeowner affordable mattress, sold locally, made along the same lines as their hotel types?  I never bothered asking the Serta folks. Not sure I expected them to give me an honest answer anyway.

I guess I was just curious as we'd recently bought a mattress from we were fairly happy with and it only cost $2- $300. We're still using it today and will buy another one from Overstock when the time comes. I'll try to avoid memory foam, though. I wasn't too happy with the memory thing, at least at first. It's been years now and we never notice it anymore, but maybe age lessens the memory in mattresses as it does in people?

Saturday, August 13, 2016

Catastrophe Inbound

This urgent alert had me going for a minute or so. Whew! Close one.

A Behind The Scenes Look at the bin Laden Killing

Here's an excerpt from a book by Seymour Hersh that gives behind the scenes details of the intelligence effort to find Osama bin Laden. Not quite what we've read in mainstream media reports. I found it an interesting read. Hat tip to for the link.

American expatriate, now living in Mexico, Fred Reed looks at how war with Russia will look under Hillary Clinton. I was surprised to see he's an apparent Trump supporter, although I'll agree there's likely less chance of war under Trump.

Pat Buchanan looks at Trump's accusations of a rigged election. 

Friday, August 12, 2016

Differences in Presidential Candidates

Not normal whining about candidates, just something in Liberty magazine that got my attention. I've probably heard parts of the observation before, not just all at once in this context:

"there have been two types of presidential candidates: (A) those who had a perennial constituency — in Bill’s words, those “who always had a lot of people who wanted them to be president” — and (B) those who didn’t, those whom “nobody ever wanted to run.

 It wasn’t a difference between people with good ideas and people with bad ones, although Bill said that he’d always had a weakness for the old maxim that “the job should seek the man,” not the other way around. The difference had to do with the psychology of the candidates and of their willing or unwilling supporters. Because of that difference, there might also be a difference in the candidates’ campaigns and their performance in office, if they managed to get into office.

Huffington Post Back Johnson/Weld

A writer with the left-wing Huffington Post makes the case for voting for Gary Johnson/ Bill Weld. Nice to see at least one lefty that can look through the electoral fog and concentrate on the candidates rather than vague attacks on the party.

An Idea For the Homeless

The Washington Post reports on an idea to eliminate panhandling in Albuquerque, New Mexico. Run by the city's mayor, the title of the story refers to homelessness but it seems more geared toward panhandling. What do they do? Give them a job cleaning up the city for a day.

Sounds ok, but I'm skeptical about how much this costs and what sort of return the city gets on its investment.

Press Democrat Wants Open Presidential Debates

Maybe I shouldn't be surprised, but I am that the Santa Rosa Press- Democrat's editorial this morning is asking that third party candidates be included in the presidential debates. Kinda nice, although the idea seems like a no- brainer to me.

Then again, as I've pointed out to other libertarians on Facebook when they write they want Gary Johnson in the debates; Be careful what you wish for, you may get it!

That doesn't go over very well, as you can imagine.

Renner Petroleum Sold

The Times- Standard reports Renner Petroleum has been sold to a Stockton based company, the official switchover taking place September 1. Why do I feel this won't end well? Maybe because I can't come up with one example, here or elsewhere, where an ownership change ended up better for the consumer. 

I'm not totally negative on it. It's just past history doesn't bode well for us who patronize the company. Just one example: I think we were better served with Payless Drugs than Rite Aid. Then again, maybe Payless would have pulled out of Eureka if Rite Aid hadn't bought them out, and don't get me started about the Henderson Center Food Mart that closed leaving Rite Aid to take its place.

Then there's CVS taking over Long's Drugs. Not too big a deal but I preferred Long's Drugs. Maybe I'm just being old fashioned, though?

And by the way, Cloverdale has a new Renner Petroleum card lock station that looks about ready to open. It's just a bit further south down South Cloverdale Blvd than the Starbucks. I wonder if that station will remain with the new ownership? I'm not sure they can undercut gas prices in Willits but, at the same time, most people in the Cloverdale area don't drive to Willits for gas. It might not matter.

Thursday, August 11, 2016

John Stossel Runs Down Both Clinton and Trump

In true libertarian style, John Stossel rips both main contenders for the presidency cutting through the usual complaints. Along the lines of Charley Reese he writes:

 As the old joke goes, it's not the corruption that matters. "The real crime is what's legal." How do we improve a system like that?
Here's one solution: Shrink government—limit its power. Then there will be less reason for politicians' cronies to bribe them, for politicians to lie about it and for all of us to fear the State.

 The smaller government is, the less we need to fear the bad things it will do.

Wednesday, August 10, 2016

Lost Coast Outpost Looks At Marijuana Initiative

One of the big wigs from the Adult Use of Marijuana Act stopped by and spoke with the folks at the Lost Coast Outpost. You can read what he had to say here.

Tuesday, August 09, 2016

The Freddy's Proposed Eureka Ordinances

I was trimming a hedge the other day and all pissed off about it. It got me to thinking again of an idea I'd had before regarding hedges and other nuisance plants in Eureka.

Before I go further I suppose I should toss whatever libertarian credentials I have in the trash. Libertarians normally shouldn't try and tell others what to do.

My proposed city ordinance: 

Whereas hedges can eventually become a public nuisance and a headache for generations to come, be it resolved that before any hedges are planted within the Eureka city limits the following be done before planting:

A permit obtained from the City of Eureka stating the exact location of the planned hedge, permission from owners of the adjacent properties and detailed plans for maintenance of said hedge.

A fee of $10.00 per foot of hedge will be paid to the City of Eureka.This applies to newly planted hedges only. It's not meant to punish those who unknowingly bought into a problem property with a hedge already growing.

The ten dollar fee (or fine, if you'd like) seems steep, but is meant to discourage planting of hedges. 

Permission should be obtained from adjacent property owners since those planting hedges often don't consider their neighbors. I had one hedge owner who was thinking of taking down a fence and replacing it with a hedge. He asked me what I thought of the idea. I told him it might be a real pain for his neighbors to maintain the hedge. He told me, "I don't care about that". True story, and shows how little some people care about their neighbors, even when trying to push a major headache on them.

My next proposed ordinance involves invasive plants. Two come to mind: English ivy and morning glory. Both are difficult, or in the case of morning glory, impossible to control. We shouldn't allow any more of them to be planted or sold in Eureka. Once planted, they're plaguing us for generations, if not forever.

Whereas morning glory is an invasive plant that is difficult if not impossible to control, this ordinance prohibits the planting or sale of either plant in Eureka. Simple enough, huh?

The same ordinance could be applied to enlish ivy (helix hedera). This is a vine with no worth and said by some to damage or
kill trees, although I've never personally seen that happen, I know firsthand of the headache ivy can be- the whole Trinity Street side of our house being infested with it.

I know some will say to wait until the plant becomes a nuisance before having the city get involved, but I'd like to stop the problem before it starts (dangerous concept, I know). I certainly wish they'd had an ordinance limiting ivy back when whoever it was planted the ivy next to our house. 

You think the city council would go for it? Problem is, as Vice Chair of the Libertarian Party of Humboldt, it would be inappropriate for me to present it to the council. Any of you, though, are free to copy it down, add your name to it and present the plan to the city council. I might even write some posts here in support of it. 

I guess I'll have to switch my voter registration to Democrat now since I'm becoming a nanny- stater. 

Monday, August 08, 2016

A Look At A Sanders Utopia

The Washington Post looks at the Bernie Sanders like utopia of Venezuela, where government can be blamed for all Venezuela's hungry people. This must be what happens when you have too many choices of deodorant?

 "The easiest way to think about this is as a four-stage cycle of doom that begins with inflation, continues to price controls, then shortages, and finally nationalizations."