Notwithstanding our current travails, this is truly a wonderful country. Consider the magnificence of the First Amendment which allows each of us to voice our views, however distorted, with relative impunity.
The Coastal Post appears to exist simply as a vehicle for the twisted and bigoted views of Edward Miller and a few others. The paper can hardly justify itself as the purveyor of news or even of the diverse views that would reflect the range of perspectives found in Marin County. No-the game is to print Miller's outrageous columns and then run the letters of protest from the ADL, JCRC and other responsible organizations to create a controversy around the initial absurdities. Just to illustrate Miller's very thinly veiled bias, one need only refer to the October 1, 1998 issue of the Coastal Post and Miller's column entitled Jihad.
The first paragraph has the United States as an inferior state subject to the decisions and dictates of Israel ("Our State Department conveniently designates any state Israel wants us to target as 'terrorist'." Further in the piece, in denouncing the US attack on the chemical plant in Sudan, Miller apparently divines a Jewish conspiracy. ("Clinton's Jewish national security advisor, Sandy Berger responded, 'I think we had overwhelming grounds to strike the facility'.") Later, Miller quotes parts of an interview with Osama bin Laden. ("The American government is an agent that represents Israel inside America. If we look at the sensitive departments in the present government like the Defense Department or the State Department or sensitive security departments like the CIA and others, we find that Jews have the first word in the American government, which is how they carry out their plans... in the Muslim world.'.")
Miller goes on to offer his own observations in a tacit endorsement of bin Laden's assessment of our government. ("Sharply pictured in bin Laden's memory must be that carefully-contrived publicity shot, shown worldwide during the Cold War, of our then-Jewish Defense Minister, Casper Weinberger.")
The views of Edward Miller who has the apparent blessing of Don Deane, Coastal Post Publisher, are such patent distortions that reasonable debate is impossible. What is worthy of condemnation is the blatant anti-Semitism evidence in Miller's words month after month and the endorsement of those who print and distribute this paper. Shame on you.
Barbara H. Bergen
Editorial Response: Thanks for your view. I point out that Edward Miller occupies about 1/30 of the paper. You should subscribe and read the rest. Miller's major message in pieces written about the Mideast is the Palestinians and Arab nations have historically gotten short shrift with their grievances not articulated, let alone addressed by the American media or government. You may disagree with what Miller says, but don't challenge his right to say it. I suggest you review Webster's definition of the word bigot.
FAA's Slip Is Show In Air Disaster
The attempt of the FAA to dismiss the cause of the Swiss Flight #111 disaster off the coast of Nova Scotia last month on some flammable metalized mylar insulations currently existing in 12,000 jetliners is laughable, to say the least. Attributing the gigantic explosion that blew up the huge McDonnel Douglas MDII to smithereens, leaving no wreckage larger than the size of an ordinary washing machine, on mylar insulations, spontaneously bursting into flame is stretching the imagination a bit too far.
The futility of this sad and irresponsible effort to direct public attention away from the more probable causes such as sabotage with the use of powerful explosives is pathetic. The statement made by the FAA to the effect that: "While the cause of the crash is not known, there are indications that some of the wreckage had been subjected to heat and possibly fire," is eloquent testimony to ridiculousness of the FAA's position on the matter.
How about the indications of a tremendous force that broke the plane into a million pieces? Is that not more significant? Any individual with an average IQ can tell you that it will be impossible for that kind of fuel contained in the tanks of current jetliners to generate the force that blew up flight #111 when ignited, even if the fuel tanks were full at the time of the explosion. That there was fire on board the plane is a given. This was established by the pilots during their last minute communications with flight controllers who received their emergency calls. It was also established that the pilots did not exhibit the kind of panic that a dangerous fire should elicit, because they knew that such a conflagration is controllable and would still give them enough time to land the plane to safety under the then obtaining circumstances. What they did not realize was that the fire was merely a prelude to an impending deadlier threat that existed on board their plane.
The FAA's slip is indeed showing in their frantic efforts to assuage the flying public's fear and benign suppositions and ridiculous theories as to the cause of these air tragedies. Flight #111 for instance, did not crash. It blew up in one gigantic explosion that rocked the environs, miles away from the site, before it hit the water. Furthermore, the FAA's statement that: "It is not considering the fire threat serious enough to issue an airworthiness directive, ordering the immediate replacement of the subject material but that it may change its position if further research proves the threat to be greater than expected," smacks of bureaucratic gobbledygook.
What research? The FAA has already certified that the suspected material is not flammable and merely recommends replacement of same at "any reasonable opportunity." Whatever that means. With the current sophistication of technology, does it take a lot to determine whether a material is flammable or not? It is obvious that the FAA is going through the motions of considering to adopt multi-billion dollar costing measures to improbably solve a problem that they are not even willing to accept exists, publicly. It is like the debate on the wisdom of administering a prohibitively expensive placebo to a panicking patient suffering from what is admittedly a terminal and incurable disease.
In the meanwhile, terrorists and saboteurs are busy crafting better and more ingenious devices to keep the FAA and other investigating agencies guessing (or appear to be guessing) as to when and how will mylar, non-flammable insulations on board 12,000 planes again burst into flame and blow up more planes, with its complacent and trusting passengers to sweet oblivion.
If the FAA has not yet cracked the mystery behind the TWA flight #800 tragedy where they have recovered 95 percent of the plane's wreckage and obtained photos and sworn statements from hundreds of reliable witnesses who saw the event happen, how can we expect them to do better on the Swiss Air Flight #111 disaster where almost nothing was recovered and no witness is available to testify on anything other than the fact that it was definitely a gigantic bang of nuclear proportions that rocked them that fateful evening.
Antonio R. Serna
Environmentalists Opposed To Transit Tax Being Muzzled
According to Marge Macris, local chair of the Marin Group of the Sierra Club, the organization has a policy to muzzle its members from speaking on issues in opposition to the local club executive committees. Apparently, Macris hasn't heard of the First Amendment. Why is she so up tight about her environmental peers opposing Measures A and B? Could it be that she doesn't want the public to know the environmental community is fractured over these measures?
As described in a recent Marin Voice in the county's daily newspaper, many environmentalists oppose Measures A and B and don't think it's a good idea to endorse an incomplete and poorly formulated transportation plan in order to get open space money. The erratic reasoning of environmentalists who are supporting Measures A and B is illustrated in the July 9, 1998 meeting notes of the Marin Conservation League's North Marin Unit which state "the group pretty much agreed that the actual rail proposal may be a waste of time and money." A motion was then approved to endorse the measures.
Just in case the public isn't sure about who is who, here is a short list of Marin's leading environmentalists opposing Measures A and B and their affiliations.
Joy Dahlgren-Past President, Marin Conservation League. Current member, Board of Directors, MCL. Co-Chair, Marin Citizens for Effective Transportation (MCET).
Barbara Salzman-President, Marin Audubon Society. Current member and former Chair of the Sierra Club, Marin Group Executive Committee (Chaired by Ms. Macris). Former member, Board of Directors, Environmental Forum of Marin. Former Board Member, Marin Conservation League.
Susan Ristow-Current member, Sierra Club, Marin Group Executive Committee.
Priscilla Bull-Past President, Marin Conservation League. Current member of the Board of Directors, Marin Conservation League. Board Member, Citizen Advocates for Preservation of St. Vincent's/Silveira.
Geogie McCarthy-Member, Board of Directors, Environmental Forum of Marin. Past member, Sierra Club, Marin Group Executive Committee. Treasurer, Marin Citizens for Effective Transportation. Board Member, Citizen Advocates for Preservation of St. Vincent's/Silveira.
Ann Thomas-Member, Board of Directors, Environmental Forum of Marin. Current Member, Board of Directors, Marin Conservation League.
Basia Crane-Member, Environmental Forum of Marin. Member, Marin Citizens for Effective Transportation.
I certainly hope the county's daily newspaper won't feel bound by such anti-democratic tactics, apparently endorsed by our local Sierra Club leader.
Headwaters Deal Is A Bad Deal
As your readers already know or perhaps have strongly suspected, the Headwaters "Deal" is a very bad deal for the taxpayers, the forests and especially for numerous wild and seriously endangered species. Half a billion dollars for 9,500 acres of fragmented groves, over half of which is already cut, and large sections clear cut (no shadows).
Under the deal Maxxam-Pacific Lumber's Habitat Conservation Plan (HCP) which is a method of circumventing the Endangered Species Act, outlines clearcutting nearly 35,000 acres in the next four years (the first decade). There will be logging on slopes formerly deemed too steep to log, and there will be further logging of watersheds too close to the edges of streams which already have lost the depth and shade and cool temperatures necessary to support salmon and stealhead.
However, this destructive HCP has not been finally approved and the "comment period" continues until Nov. 16. A public hearing will be held Nov. 5 at the Oakland Convention Center, 550 10th St. (East Hall, between Broadway and Olay). To find out more information call and leave a message at (510) 835-6303 or 669-1614. Comments submitted to Bruce Halstead, US Fish and Wildlife Service, 1125 16th St., Rm. 209, Arcata, CA 95521, FAX (707) 822-8411. Please reference Permit numbers PRT 828950 and 1157. Or comments may be dropped in hearing boxes at the hearing on Nov. 5.
Redwood Empire Trim Committee Opposes Transit Tax
We at the Redwood Empire TRIM Committee were contacted by a new Marin group, Citizens For Effective Transportation, which is against the sales tax for Highway 101. They sent the IJ article by Bill Bagley in which he says that with the sales tax "everybody wins."
Everybody wins, all right, everybody but the taxpayer!
In Sonoma County, we remember Bagley from the fifties when he won a local assembly race. At that time he was involved with the Redwood Empire Association, the Golden Gate Bridge District, and the California Transportation Commission. The common denominator of these groups is that they are all spenders of our tax dollars.
Bagley claims the opposition groups propose "nothing in return." In return for what, we must wonder? Are the "winners" of the sales tax increase the taxpayers? We think not. We think the politicians, bureaucrats and contractors will be the clear winners, to say nothing of the consultants, lobbyists and attorneys.
What we propose is to separate the rail issue from the highway expansion and then use the fuel taxes we are already being charged for the 101 improvements as was originally intended. The federal government taxes gasoline at 18.3 cents per gallon for gas and 18.0 cents per gallon for diesel. These taxes generate revenue which is more than adequate for 4-lanes from San Rafael to Windsor. Unfortunately when Bagley speaks of living "selfishly" on "our parents' past investment" he neglects to mention that we are continuing the "investment" begun by our parents and that the very boards and commissions on which he served squandered our past and present tax "investments' by failing to use the fuel taxes for their intended purposes.
Government produces nothing. It only knows how to tax, spend and acquire power. We the taxpayers have had it! No more taxes! No more lying and sleight-of hand! Our governments don't live within their budgets. Any other business would be bankrupt but the government simply taxes more, prints more money, hires more employees, and buys votes with pork-barrel spending.
Government officials and employees live by parasitically sucking money from the taxpayers and as taxpayers become weaker, the government becomes stronger. The taxpayer struggles to exist with double and triple taxation, while government, the servant, grows to be the master.
This scheme worked out between Marin and Sonoma counties is cynical politics unmasked. By placing two measures on the ballot our hypocritical officials have managed to evade the intent of the law while adhering to its letter. This two-measure approach is merely a trick to fool the gullible taxpayer.
It is high time that government officials stop trying to evade the intent of the taxpayer-passed law which requires a two-thirds vote to pass any taxing measure. There is a vast amount of money already available (through fuel taxes) to fund the Highway 101 expansion. We do not need any new tax, no matter how small a percentage. Once government gets its hands on new sources of revenue they never let go!
We urge a NO vote on the half-cent sales tax increase.
Board of Directors
Redwood Empire TRIM Committee
by Bill Bisenti, President
Baiting The Hook
"Curiouser and curiouser" said Alice. And so say I in my attempt to find facts and/or logic behind ballot measures A and B. Twice satiated by the inane rationalizations from the "Yes" and "No" proponents, I welcomed the sobering impartial analysis by County Counsel: "[A] does not in any way restrict the use [of B funds] for general governmental purposes."
When an official of the Coalition of Balanced (sic) Transportation was questioned as to why A and B were so haphazard, her reply was, in effect, "We felt the (desperate) voters would accept a half-cent tax hook for almost anything named Rail, and we calculated that would bring in $300 million over 20 years. We then sat around and schemed of ways to bait the hook with something for everyone but really nothing much for anyone."
I've been a rail buff all my life and would contribute time and money toward any increment of a real program to provide BART-type service from Healdsburg to the San Francisco airport-with the not-too-hidden intent of later continuing high-speed rail to Los Angeles.
A and B should be not just defeated, they should be withdrawn!
The Good and The Bad
The article by Simac (aside from his sadistic and coward's attitude to women) was a disgrace to CP's integrity. Clinton denied sex under oath so forcing it into the open to prove the perjury!
Bravo for your allowing the honest and well-informed to speak-the Millers and the Scotts. Already mailed $24 for November 1998-October 1999.
Dear Mr. Simac
Read your article on the presidential quagmire with mixed feelings, with mixed reactions, as your analysis goes from incisive analysis and right-on humor, to a parody; the latter drags on and takes from the force of your eloquence.
Don't you think it would be justified simply to buy a ticket to DC and kick the living daylights out of this foolish, vain and manic spender? Forty million not only will finance umpteen visits by the cabinet, Supreme Court, House and Senate, to the Mustang Ranch, but could be put to some use in the interests of our commonweal. The list of uses would go on and on.
And Starr should be prosecuted, you are absolutely right on the mark. To compromise the office of the presidency, which has been a consistent effort, in one or another shape, since 1992, is unforgivable.
Starr, it is clear, has little comprehension of right moral conduct; the guy knows the damage his efforts have done, and will do.
We have (I may be in error, but this comes from talking to friends and people I've met casually) a majority of the population who are daily visited with obscene TV and obscene lawyer positions, and are opposed to what is going on.
The chief prosecutor ought to be taught a lesson. The question is, what to do?
Thanks for your clever and clarifying article.
Sales, Not Transit, Tax
I oppose the November general sales tax ballot measure. I resent the devious referral to it as a "transit tax." It is not. It is a general sales tax. The money can be used for anything, and it will be.
The measure is illusionary. If passed, it will induce more building which will generate more traffic. It is by definition self-defeating.
It is duplicitous in its attempt to circumvent Proposition 13.
I certainly plan to vote against both measures and would encourage any and all who really think about this issue to do the same.
WALTER K. DODS
Tax For Special Interests
Start planning your gift giving now if you're voting for Measures A & B. Since the results of the Marin County Transportation and Land Use Advisory Measure (A) are merely a matter of interest to the County Board of Supervisors, but "not in any manner legally controlling," you may receive funding for your non-transit-related project, too.
Supervisors John Kress and Steve Kinsey, as well as County Transportation Planner Joe Kott, have demonstrated they are ready and willing to receive incentives from special interest groups by accepting a summer vacation to Holland and reciprocating with private parties in supervisors' homes. You only have to hope that their interests are aligned with yours or that your gifts are particularly difficult to refuse.
Pedestrian and bikeways projects are an essential component of good transportation planning; however, special interest groups have persuaded county officials to subvert planning guidelines with regard to such. Though important, bikeways projects definitely are not the first priority in solving Marin County's transit problems. The manner in which the Board of Supervisors is handling this category, however, is an interesting case study and an expose of how the Board can work.
It is common knowledge in the bicycling community that County officials have met privately on numerous occasions with special interest factions to make decisions about cycling issues and use of public funds. County decisions made in recent years should cause concern among certain groups, in particular: 1) private property owners; 2) persons concerned about Marin County's environment, including its threatened and endangered species' habitats; 3) taxpayers who expect public funding decisions to be open to public review and; 4) taxpayers who expect transportation policy to be made with public input.
Recently, a scheme to spend public funds on a comprehensive mountain biking map was formulated wherein no public review would be allowed. If the map (currently in production but not yet released for public sale) is distributed, private property owners will experience an influx of traffic all over Marin as more mountain biking groups drive here and travel through our neighborhoods to access public lands. There are at least 53 unmarked private property access points to public Open Space which may or may not be on the final map. County officials are aware of these access points and, historically, have ignored pleas for assistance to discourage uninvited public trail users from accessing Open Space in this way. "Non-profit" mountain biking advocacy groups stand to make huge profits from an investment made with California State Transportation Development Act funds to produce a map the public has been forbidden to review.
While the County claims they have no money for enforcement to protect other trail users in Open Space preserves from lawless mountain bikers, restoration of eroded trials, maintenance of fire protection roads, etc., they are now spending $50,000 on a land management plan. This, in spite of years of appeals by neighborhood groups to enforce existing Open Space rules.
The Board of Supervisors' sense of priority is thus flawed and their concern for the average taxpayer and property owner is demonstrated to be deficient. They consider public monies to be their own . Passage of Measures A and B will provide a 20-year enticement for special interest groups who have reason to anticipate success, at least with some current members of the Board.
DONALD R. CORN
Rail Boondoggle No Answer
The proposed $300 million tax for transportation is one of the most blatant scams to face voters this November.
First of all, the tax monies created would be used to build a railroad from Healdsburg to San Rafael. Virtually no commuter from Novato south would use it. How many are going to get into their cars, or on local buses, go to the train station, pay to ride for minutes, then get off and find a bus to their work? And from Lucas Valley south to the Golden Gate there would be no 101 congestion relief whatsoever. (A promoter survey showed the railroad was next to last of nine items respondents would spend tax money for.)
The promoters of the railroad are dangling visions of big money in front of a variety of groups to try to get their votes. The fine print of the advisory proposal is just that: advisory. The railroad promoters can do what they want with the tax money. (They overrode the county-wide vote against the proposed railroad.) The NWP railbed is a disaster that has already happened. In February of this year, floods destroyed a very large portion of the bed in northern Marin. Rails were four or five feet off the ground for hundreds of yards. The bed was a dike for extensive farmland, which was flooded. Where the bed has been used by NWP, freight trains can only run 10 miles per hour. Three top people quit recently because they had not been paid. What would the tax money be buying? An attempt to run a train from Novato the the Marin Fair this summer was abandoned because of the very large cost to update the line.
The bottom line is this: By the time this nearly useless rail line would be built and paid for, there would not be any money available for any of the advisory carrots being dangled. Even worse, the chance of any real solutions to 101 congestion would be pushed far (20 years?) into the future. And the chance for any state or federal help would have been used on this debacle. Currently, we would commit to spend $300 million to maybe get $11 million state/federal funds. That is a very expensive buy for a boondoggle.
L. J. KELLER
The A-B Grand Scam
Measures A and B are the most reprehensible and deceitful scams perpetrated by local politicians since Marin Supervisors tried to sneak through their own pay raise in the Christmas season some years ago.
It will increase, not decrease Hwy. 101 congestion. A & B backers know that. Their hidden agenda is to get their railway installed, then use the railway to justify building new residential-commercial hubs around each station, encroaching on open space, to benefit rapacious developers who will swoop in, make a killing here, then move on to rape other pristine areas elsewhere.
The "A-B Gang" have bribed various categories of voters-bikers, environmentalists, oldsters-with pie-in-the-sky money promises. Most of those promises will be broken, with the money shifted to support their vastly underfunded "Toonerville Trolley," making train buffs happy but screwing the rest of the taxpayers.
Sierra Club national policy urges curbing use of diesel, but Marin's Sierra Club chapter, succumbing to a promised (imaginary) $55 million, now supports multiple noise-polluting, crud-spewing diesel locomotives on a rail line traversing wildlife habitat and fragile wetlands, bringing more encroachment on open space by new station hubs springing up along the way. I fear local Sierra Clubbers have been badly conned.
The A-B Gang promises a train every 15 minutes. On a single track line? That means a train will pass any given spot every seven and a half minutes, in one direction or the other. But there are no sidings where one pulls in to let another go by. How many sidings are needed, at what cost, to keep to that 15-minute schedule? How long must a train wait at each siding? Any train late by as little as one or two minutes could throw the entire system schedule into chaos.
Their silly Toonerville Trolley doesn't even go to Larkspur Landing. It stops at the Central San Rafael bus station, where riders must transfer (more delay) to a bus or the ferry to the City. Intermodal? Bah, humbug!
There's only one answer. Help spread the news about this A-B Grand Scam to all your friends and neighbors, and let's everybody vote a resounding NO on A and B in November.
* * *
I'm appalled at the nine blatant false statements by Measure A & B proponents who signed the voter pamphlet argument in favor of Measure A.
In their "Vote Yes" reasons, they say flatly that Measure A "will give...will improve...will reduce...directly attacks...expands...balances...limits administrative expenses..."-unqualified statements, as though they were matters of guaranteed fact. They are not fact. They are mere wishful thinking for the dupes of a masterful con job.
The truth is it may (not will) do some of those things, but is highly unlikely to do all of them. Look at the preceding page where County Counsel Faulkner quotes Elections Code Section 9603(c): "...The results of the advisory vote will in no manner be controlling on the sponsoring legislative body." The sales tax increase would go into the General Fund. It could be spent any way supervisors in the next 20 years may decide to spend it.
Isn't there a law against making false statements in election pamphlet arguments? Proponents' arguments contain multiple falsehoods. Vote NO on both A & B. (Emphasis is mine throughout.)
I was all for Measure A, the "transit tax," until I got my Marin County sample ballot which spells out the specifics of the measure.
Measure A calls for any new voter-approved sales tax (Measure B) to be used for $300 million worth of transportation projects to help alleviate traffic congestion in the county.
However, in the impartial analysis of Measure by County Counsel Patrick K. Faulkner, it says "Measure B states that the half-cent sales tax is to be used 'for general governmental purposes'... The County is not in any way legally bound to use the tax monies for any special purpose or for any particular project or projects."
The County Board of Supervisors would not be legally bound to use the revenue generated by a half-cent sales tax toward the transit projects called for in Measure A!
We're talking $300 million of sales tax revenue created over 20 years!
How is any voter to know exactly how much of the $300 million would actually be used for the transit plans outlined in Measure A?
Bikes Bite Back
Please note the following factual corrections to the letter published October 1 regarding the Marin County Bicycle Coalition (MCBC) Bike Route Map Project.
1. Our purpose is to unite cyclists to create a safer and healthier community, not to enhance the mountain biking industry.
2. All MCBC meetings are open to the public and the media have advance notice of our agendas, so Open Space may be at meetings.
3. The $5,000 granted on May 19 was to a professional bikeways consultant, to develop a database for eventual public use. We had hoped for help with the map, but it was not to be. We have almost finished the map with no help from the county government.
4. MCBC is not represented by Michael Jones and has not collected any data for him or from him.
5. Our first draft map was presented at the Trips for Kids Bike Swap by Joe Breeze, who has been the foremost creator of the map.
6. The all-expense-paid trip to the Netherlands was not sponsored by the MCBC and the map is not largely for mountain biking and is produced by bicycle transit advocates.
7. The Netherlands trip was not financed by Patrick Seidler, but was financed by Transportation Alternatives for Marin, through donations, and the Resource Renewal Institute (RRI), headed by Huey Johnson. The trip included two delegates from RRI and the trip included meetings set up by RRI at the Ministry of Environment.
8. Hal Brown and other top officials have not reviewed the draft map. Steve Pedderle and Rick Carlson have looked at the third version of the front side, but have not been asked for input. No public review or due process is required as no public funds have been expended and the entire process has been created and organized by the volunteers of the MCBC with no assistance from the bicycle industry.
9. The MCBC has no representative contractor and could not wait for the development of the Marin County database. The original reason I volunteered to create the map on behalf of Marin County Open Space was the idea that $5,000 would be forthcoming from the County. The map is being paid for by Velo Club Fairfax and Bicycle Trails Council of Marin with the eventual proceeds to benefit the soon-to-be-incorporated charitable organization known as the Marin County Bicycle Coalition.
I hope this will clear up the misunderstandings and outright falsehoods cloaked in concern for proper spending of public funds generated by the anti-mountain biking extremists.
* * *
I know the temptation to distrust our county government is strong. Perhaps you feel that a negative, critical tone is most appropriate to sell your newspaper.
The bicycle community of Marin is strongly opposed to your viewpoint. Measures A & B for balanced transportation are essential for Marin to be considered a "self-help" county. The tax would enable us to qualify for an exponential increase in funding from the state and federal government. The bicycle community has a relatively small, but objectively large stake in this proposed sales tax. We have a plan that could possibly reduce automobile use by making bicycling safer and more attractive. You do not offer any positive solution to traffic congestion. We deserve the chance to make our "green" dream happen. Please reconsider your position. Thank you for your consideration.
Chairman Pro Tem
Marin County Bicycle Coalition
(Editor's Note: We do not choose a tone to help sell newspapers; The Coastal Post is free when picked up from newsrecks. Subscribers pay a small fee for home delivery.)
Hypocrites' Power Struggle Is The Scandal
The expanding worldwide economic crisis has come dangerously close to home, calling for strong political leadership. The U.S. armed forces are preparing for another intervention in the Balkans region; the tension with Saddam in Iraq is far from over; the Y2K deadline is inevitably approaching; the functioning of the U.S. government is about to come to a halt for lack of a financial plan agreement...and what is the U.S. Congress working on? The impeachment of the President, caught with his pants down for a foolishly juvenile sexual affair. Congress has actually voted for an open-ended impeachment inquiry, which means that there is no end in sight to this crisis, unless we can stop them, maybe with our November votes. So far it has cost us 40 million dollars, and the bill is up and running, while poor mothers pushed off welfare can't feed their children, and have no day care, in case they are lucky enough to find a job, a less and less likely scenario in the present environment.
A friend went to Lebanon this summer. Their papers say that it's a Jewish conspiracy (Starr and Lewinksy are Jewish) to hurt a president that is not pro-Israel enough. On KPFA I heard that Starr is on the tobacco companies' payroll. Whatever. It's a power struggle, an unfair political power play not even thinly disguised by the banner of an outmoded Christian sexual morality. And if, after years of probing and $40 million in expenses, the only charge Starr could come up with are lies about a consensual sexual affair, it means Slick Willie is cleaner than most. And how about Miss Tripp who pushed her friend to pour her heart out while secretly taping the conversation? Isn't that illicit, deceitful, and illegal? I certainly wouldn't want to have her as my confidante. And Clinton's taped interrogation, it was supposed to be destroyed right afterward; instead it was broadcast worldwide through the Internet.
They got Clinton to apologize; they could have scolded him and get it over with. But no, they keep spending our money and the time they should be using to run the nation in a witch hunt, fed by voyeurism and the cowardly pleasure of beating a dead horse while posing as moral judges.
I was in Italy lately. There people wondered: Why didn't he just say, "I did it." What's the big deal? What was implied was, we know every man likes a blow job if he can get it. And it is no news that men of power can. But Americans are Puritanical, you can't just confess, repent and go on with your life. So he kept trying to hide his dirty little secret. And now many are crying bloody murder and want punishment, really revenge in disguise.
I can't believe how the whole affair is being conducted with this special prosecutor out of control in his reckless desire for destruction at our expense. In Italy, the major newspapers were talking about McCarthyism, saying this is the Inquisition-the same self-righteous violence to suppress "evil," which then had sexual overtones. And the damage being done is not only personally to Bill Clinton, but to the institution of the presidency itself and to the country's prestige and credibility.
I cannot imagine anybody in their right mind wanting to be president of this country if it means being subjected to this kind of abusive public scrutiny. And just think, if the president is fair game, you and I can be next someday soon.
Even though a majority of American public has been saying "Enough already, we don't want to know anymore about this," the media keeps banging their drum. On all TV stations from January on it has been a constant inundation. I am sick of it. A couple of days ago the journalist of a major station concluded a brief reportage on Clinton's intervention to prevent the deepening of the economic crises at the G7 group with this statement: "The president is trying to divert the attention from his problems." I say-Stop diverting his attention from our problems and his job! The U.S. is the major power on the planet, the world's recognized leader; the more sloppy it is in exercising its power, the worse off we all are. Never mind whether Clinton is right or wrong, foolish or a victim, a disappointment or irresponsible-the Republican conservatives are causing the damage by enacting this travesty of justice, disguised as a moral crusade. We need to let them know our displeasure, and stop them through our votes.
American politicians seem to be oblivious, but the world is watching in horror how, in the name of democracy, they administer their hypocritical justice at the center of the Empire.
The log of sexual indiscretions in the eye of the Republican conservative mob is the cause of their looking at the speck of sexual indiscretion in the eye of President Clinton. Think about the difference between a speck and a log. (Matthew 7:1-5 in the Bible) It is one compared to 10,000. It is the 445-page Starr Report compared to the 4,450,000-page Republican Conservative Report. Our family study of the mote beam truth ("You hypocrites, first take the log out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to take the speck out of your brother's eye.) has helped us to understand this eternal truth and the way things are.
Vanity Fair exposed Trent Lott. Salon magazine exposed Henry Hyde. The Idaho Statesman exposed Helen Chenoweth. The conservatives have far more indiscretions than President Clinton. This is just the tip of the iceberg, and this is just the beginning. Who is next? Paige Patterson and Pat Robertson would be excellent subjects to investigate, as well as the closet lives of the rest of these hypocrites. These investigations could continue into the next century. The conservatives brought the forthcoming 4,450,000-page Republican Conservatives Report (in the Internet, on video) on themselves.
When the religious right throws the book at President Clinton but looks the other way when their own people are accused of much more serious indiscretions, their double standard suggest that they are less interested in morality than they are in the political agenda-the dismantlement of HUD and ruining our health care and environment-which they have already begun.
All Politicians Are Liars
Like many others I've been watching the Judiciary Committee regarding the Clinton fiasco.
I've noticed that all the goodie two-shoe, righteous, pious Republicans are actually salivating, thinking "we'll get a Republican into the presidency." It's surprising they aren't concerned about it flowing down on their expensive, conservative attire!
I've been around a long time and unless you're from another planet, you've got to know that all politicians are liars! Republicans are just sneakier!
Would I love to have the power and money to put them under oath and ask some pertinent questions-they would all fall by the wayside!
Look out, good ole boys-might be your turn next. Their thinking is like this: When a Democrat does it, it's immoral. When a Republican does, it, it's wishful thinking.
MRS. VEL DeLEON
Get Rid Of The Lynch Mob
It is unbelievable that a country as great as the United states of America, inhabited by a people who are leading the world in almost all kinds of human endeavor, should be caught up in a ridiculously stupid dilemma such as what the Kenneth Starr investigation has produced. We are actually in the process of considering to impeach a very popular and effective President, not only in the eyes of Americans but of the entire world. We are so proud of our form of government and the effectiveness of our democracy, and yet we are allowing some insidious politicians with self-serving, hidden agendas, persecute, embarrass and humiliate our president over a very commonplace, personal indiscretion that is strictly a matter between him and his wife. Let's face it: If all males in this country will be subjected to the kind of investigation that Kenneth Starr and his no-holds-barred gang of witch-hunters set loose against President Clinton, with the sky-is-the-limit budget, and with the Republicans sitting in judgment, 99.99% of our public officials will lose their jobs. This is so obvious and the American people know it.
It is not the President who should be kicked out of office if we are to put a stop to this kind of nonsense. Let the politicians who are currently tormenting the President step forward and be recognized. They are the culprits who have brought us these problems, and this embarrassment that the whole world is laughing about. Getting rid of this lynch mob, disguised as public servants, will prove to the world that the strength of our democracy lies in our ability to purge our society of disgusting hypocrites who masquerade as moral crusaders but in truth are promoting their own selfish interests at the expense of upholding the people's popular will. The timing is perfect. Let's start leaning up on November 3, 1998.
ANTONIO R. SERNA
Fiddling While The Planet Burns
The globe is warming, the ozone layer is depleting, nuclear proliferation is increasing, terrorists are plotting and searching for nuclear weapons, a new and deadly virus is loose in the land, a world-wide computer breakdown (Y2K) will soon be upon us, the poor are hungry, and a largely Republican Congress and press are engaged in a mean-spirited and hypocritical dissection of a sexual affair as if it were the first ever and the first affair any sitting president ever had. And we ridicule Nero who strummed his harp while Rome burned!
Berkeley Gun Maker Ban
I see that the Berkeley City Council, at the urging of one Paula Hallowell-Dahr and the Rev. Michael McGarry, in order to help curb gun violence by sparking a hoped-for nationwide boycott of investment in gun makers to run gun makers out of business, has voted to ban city investment in all firearms manufacturers. One wonders if such blanket ban is altogether wise.
Perhaps the ban should be amended to permit investments in gun makers Colt and Beretta, since Colt makes the M16 rifles used by U.S. forces and many of our allies, and Beretta handguns are the all-service U.S. official military sidearm. It would be both unpatriotic and dangerous to society to disarm our military and police.
Colt, Smith & Wesson and Ruger revolvers, of course, are still in common use in many smaller, less affluent police departments of America, and some use Marlin 9mm or .45 caliber carbines, so investments in S&W;, Ruger and Marlin should probably be granted exemptions.
Then there are the Austrian, German and Swiss firms of Glock, Heckler and Koch, and Sigarms, which, like Colt, S&W; and Beretta, make many of the pistols used by police forces which have abandoned revolvers in favor of self-loaders. They, too should doubtless be excluded from the investment ban, as should Springfield, which makes the FBI's newly-adopted .45 caliber pistol.
I suppose Remington, Winchester and Mossberg should be also included as exceptions to the ban, since practically every police force in the nation, including military police, use 12-gauge shotguns made by one or another of these gun makers. And don't forget the makers of flare pistols used in both work boat and recreational boating emergencies, which can also double as short-range defensive arms. And of course, all makers of black powder arms, never used in modern crime.
Then, too, under current federal law (10 USCS 311) all able-bodied Berkeley males aged 17 to 45 (except those exempted by 10 USCS 312) are members of the militia. If called for militia duty, they are expected (says the U.S. Supreme Court) "to appear bearing arms supplied by themselves and of the kind in common use at the time." Thus many other makers of a wide variety of models and calibers of firearm should doubtless be included as exceptions to the disinvestment policy, though perhaps some two or three gun makers still may remain subject to Berkeley's investment ban.
I'm confident that neither Ms. Hallowell-Dahr and the Rev. McGarry, nor the Berkeley City Council (despite the latter' sometimes aberrant-not to say bizarre-foreign policy initiatives), would want to be considered either anti-police or anti-American, so I feel sure council members will want to enact appropriate amendments to their disinvestment ban at an early opportunity.
Lt. Col., U.S. Army, Retired
Switch And Fight
We dumped the IJ and are going with the Post. Thanks.
Printing The Truth
Jacqueline from House of House recently gave me your address.
I enclose 10 pounds and hope you receive it for some copies of your newspaper.
Great to hear there are still people like yourselves who are brave enough to print the truth.
Well done, I look forward to hearing from you. If you need more money, I will post it straight away.
Barry, South Wales
El Nino And The Earth
Since my last article here in the Post, Ch. 9 aired a special entitled "Chasing El Nino" which detailed some of the observations that have been made over the last 20 years. A series of research buoys were placed within the north-to-south and east-to-west El Nino track and carefully monitored. Temperatures, rates of speed, length, and width of water movement were measured, what written history that was found was noted, core samples from trees within the El Nino influence were examined, and we now have a more accurate perception of this phenomena.
Increases of 15 degrees in oceanic temperatures raise the seas' warmth to 86 degrees while generating a warm, moist plume of air above the current that acts as a barrier to the west-to-east air flow before it reaches the coast of South America. Those same winds travel across areas where rain forests stored that moisture after they cooled when crossing the Andes mountains.
Today those rains are deposited then re-evaporated and redeposited over the countries east of the Atlantic ocean. These vast quantities of water being added to the oceans of the world create a mobile, undulating pressure upon the sea floors that is of recent origin.
Studies of these effects are only just being done. Ocean floor changes are difficult to assess, for there is far more ocean floor than there is land mass above water. Technologies are being studied for their effectiveness toward this research. As the weight of the millions of tons of additional water to these seas is tidal as well, we should see effects first in places where the earth crust is thinnest as well as most active. The causes for increased lava flows in some parts of the planet may well be attributable to oceanic pressures great enough to depress areas of the oceanic floor, thereby effecting the plasmic subterranean magma, leading to volcanic laval expulsion.
As the planet rotates, the uninterrupted influence of the moon draws these tides; when the sun and moon are in the same quadrant of the sky, the tides are greater, and so are the pressures to the ocean floor. Something to ponder.
Why Do Dogs Live Twice As Long As Doctors?
Yes, it is true: dogs only live to an average of 15 years, but in dog years, they actually live past 130. The AMA says doctors' average lifespan is only 58, due to addictions.
Dog years are no joke, if you notice that a dog matures in two years, while it takes a human child 18 to 25 years to reach an adult level of maturity.
Here is one way we can compare dog longevity to human lifespan to determine which species has a healthier constitution.
Most people accept that one dog year equals seven human years. If you multiply the dog's two years to maturity by seven, you get about a 14-year lifespan. And if you multiply the average human's 20 years to adulthood, by seven, you get 140 years.
So, from this understanding, the human has the potential to live to 140, if they did not have one tiny genetic defect, that the dog does not have. In fact, most animals don't have this key genetic defect-only humans, guinea pigs, fruit bats and gorillas: the inability to make vitamin C.
With all the talk in the media about genetic defects, you would think they would talk about this. Not a word. Why? Because there is no way to patent vitamin C and make cash registers sing. Besides, the corporations don't want to pay retirement for 80 years to people who worked for only 30.
Dogs' and most animals' bodies make their own vitamin C from the food they eat. A dog makes about 120 mg of vitamin C every hour. That is 3,000 mg a day to keep a 30-pound dog healthy. People make zero.
Many experts suggest a person weighing 150 pounds needs 2,000 mg an hour. I pop 2 caps of 1,000 mg C every hour or so, or sip a drink I make with C crystals hourly. That way I get my 10 to 15 glasses of water a day, plus 20 grams of vitamin C daily.
Even when a dog is sleeping, its body is making a gram of C at night, that is why dogs rarely die from heart attacks or strokes in their sleep. Most human heart attacks and strokes happen from 3-6 a.m. You can have a stroke at age 39. If you took 4 grams of time-released vitamin C at bedtime, you could avoid most heart attacks and strokes. What a coincidence!
Four grams of time-released CMA (calcium, magnesium and ascorbate vitamin C, from Alacer) is what I take at bedtime. The idea behind taking C is not just to live to 140, but mainly to live healthy, without colds, strokes or most diseases. Can C do that?
Even a dog's body slows down production of C in old age and makes less and less. Thus if you want your dog to live to 20, you need to give it vitamin C from middle-age onward to prevent scaly skin, colds and premature aging. Take care of your dog. Learn!
Most people take vitamin C for granted, since the media has conned-I mean convinced-people that you can get all the vitamin C you need from the food you eat. That myth has killed more people than all our wars. If you are a cat, dog or cow, that is true, since you don't have a genetic defeat to correct.
But if you are a human, with this genetic defect, you need to take major corrective action just to make it to 100. If you don't try to correct for this mistake in nature, you will, at best, make it to only 75. A mere 10 dog year. Do you want your dog to outlive you?
If you do like Linus Pauling did, when he finally started taking vitamin C at age 66, you could make it to 90. But even Pauling didn't take reasonable doses of 2,000 mg an hour until he was 70. If you get smart late in life, like Pauling, you might make it to 93, like Linus did. He was pain free, sexually active and teaching until he died at 93, his wife said. His parting words were, "Take 2,000 mg of C an hour."
If you listened to what your father said, and you kept taking C from age one until 139, you could make it to 140 or more. I didn't start taking any C until I was 25. I didn't start taking reasonable doses of 2,000 mg an hour until my son Shane hipped me to the value of C when I was 53.
Can I make it to 140? Stay tuned. I will issue a family longevity report every year until 2069, when I plan to be 129. I will be 100 in 2041 and could live to 2081 if I play my C cards right.
I have written a great book on what all I am doing to live to 140 and have fun doing it. For a copy, send $9.
San Francisco 94142
Original Cosmic Car Show Reunion
We're organizing a "Cosmic Car Show 30 Year Reunion" concert for spring/summer 1999. We'd like to find any of the original artists who performed at the original concert at Muir Beach. We'd also like to find any memorabilia that we can use on our website at
Lungren Defends Sexual Harassers
We have heard all about Monicagate over and over again from the national press. However the press in California has been strangely silent about the peccadilloes of some of Governor Pete Wilson's top aides in the California Health and Welfare Agency
Three secretaries who worked for the California Department of Health Services were subjected to a gross violation of their human rights.(One of these women was pregnant and encouraged to get an abortion by DDS management)(Steve Kessler). The women were Sue Ann Gage, Rochelle Strasser, and Karen D. Gilson who were harassed over a three period, they threatened with termination of employment and given negative references when they tried to escape this hostile environment. I have read the court documents concerning this case and this was not a simple case of boss having an affair with his secretary, these women where passed around among Department of Health Services management for the purposes of providing sexual favors that coerced out of them. The major offenders were John Rodriguez who was Chief Deputy Director of the Department of Health Services and Joe Munso who was Deputy Director of Administration for the Department of Health Services.
Joe Munso had one former secretary give him blow jobs while he stood with his back to the door so nobody would walk in on them.
The three women sued these creeps in Sacramento Superior Court No. 96-Aso 1521, November 8, 1996, Department 53. I have the court documents which are public record. Kim Belshe' Director of the Department of Health Services did everything in here power to cover this up. The victims were paid hush money complaints of the taxpayers of the State of California.
Jan Howard who helped preside over $230,000,000 lost Medi-Cal funds was promoted to Section Chief through Johnny The Stud's help she knew how to use her head, but not for thinking.
John Rodriguez was given a new position as Deputy Director, Hospitals, of the Department of Mental Health. Joe Munso was promoted to Chief Deputy Director of Health Services. We all know how vulnerable mental patients are from sexual predators, please join me in protesting this appointment by writing to Governor Wilson and the State Legislature.
John G. Bessler
Funeral Protest No Way To Win Souls
Gay student Matthew Shepard who was beaten to death and left for dead in Wyoming is to be buried on Friday. A funeral, which is supposed to be a solemn occasion for family and friends to morn the death and loss of their loved ones will be marked by further hate from protesters from the Westboro Baptist Church of Topeka Kansas who plan to carry anti-gay pickets at Shepard's funeral.
It's bad enough that Christians have helped to create an environment where hate crimes against gays are encouraged. But can't they leave a person alone after their dead? What is the point in harassing a grieving family at the funeral? I don't know what they hope to accomplish by disrupting a funeral, but they sure aren't going to win over any souls for Christ with that kind of repulsive behavior.
Springfield Missouri 65806
League Of Women Voters Says No On 8
The league of Women Voters is opposed to Proposition 8 on the November ballot. We believe that the measure is really about six ballot measures in one, ignoring the state constitution's single subject requirement for initiatives.
Proposition 8 would add a new, unnecessary, and costly layer of bureaucracy-the Office of Chief Inspector of Public Schools-on top of the State Board of Education, the Secretary of Education and Child Development, and the Western Association of Schools and Colleges certification process. The appointed inspector would serve for ten years without legislative approval or oversight.
When over ten percent of California teachers have emergency credentials because of a severe teacher shortage, here and across the country, Proposition 8 would make such credentials illegal, thus adding to the shortage without addressing it.
Most alarmingly, Proposition 8 would require nearly all of the state's 8,000 schools to establish school site councils, composed of two-thirds parents and one-third teachers, which would control each school's curriculum and budget. The provision would toss out the new, carefully developed, more rigorous subject matter standards just adopted by the state, and would dramatically weaken the authority of elected school boards. Each school in a district could have a different curriculum, and if a site council wanted to insert its private agenda into the curriculum, the school board could not overrule it.
The powers of the school site councils would also seriously diminish the power of the 60-80 percent of the state's voters who do not have children in schools but who pay school taxes and vote in school board elections. They would lose all influence over the schools they pay for.
Finally, in a breathtaking display of disdain for our representative form of democracy, Proposition 8 states that the measure could only be amended by a vote of 80 percent of both houses plus the governor's signature.
Proposition 8 should be soundly rejected by the voters on November 3.
President of the League of Women Voters of Marin County