I really don't know what to make of the numbers. Either the Shasta County DA's office is doing a better job at putting people away, or they are over prosecuting offenders. But neighboring counties Tehama and Butte are also in the top ten in the state. Hmmm. And why is it that Humboldt County has more Violent offenses per 100,000 than Shasta? (413 to 293) And Humboldt has more Drug offenses per 100,000? (579 to 308) And yet we have less people behind bars? Could someone explain what this all means?
This happened at yesterday's Board of Supervisors meeting during public comments concerning the appointment of a reluctant Bruce Emad for an at large position on the Humboldt County Planning Commission. The 3 voted to ignore 19 applicants for the position. This will make for some political fall out, but I am not so sure there will be a tidal wave of animosity. David and his wife Penny won't have a big say in this. They both live in 5th District Supervisor Sundberg's district.
If the US economy wasn't bad enough already, union membership is down to 11.9%. According to the Department of Labor there was a net loss of 612,000 union members last year. In the early 1980's, union membership was over 20%! And the future is not looking much brighter. Only 4.3% of the workers between the age of 16 and 24 years of age are union! And a real glaring reality is this; 36.2% of all union members are in the public sector. Only 6.9% of the private sector is union! Most of this is because of the uneven playing field for corporations to ignore the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA) and the constraints in organizing through the ineffectiveness of the National Labor Relations Board upholding the bylaws and spirit of the NLRA. (I have stories galore on this while I was organizing.)
And it is not like people not wanting to be union. Over 50% of the current US workforce would like to be union. And why not. The average union worker makes $917 a week as compared to $717 a week for non-union workers.
But lets bring this closer to home. In the 1990's there were around 500 private sector union jobs on the Samoa Peninsula alone! Now there is less than 10. I know I have spewed much of this in the past. Just like to bring this up every now and then.
Robin and I went to McKinleyville High School to watch the Panthers face off against the Arcata Tigers. We have watched enough Arcata games this year to have expected a huge Arcata win. (The last player I coached in 8th grade basketball still playing High School is junior Matt Gulley for the Tigers. He was fun to coach and he loved my "never seen a shot I didn't like" philosophy. MHS out hustled and played tough defense to take down a team with way superior height. Tom Witzel was the only Tiger in double figures with 24 points. (Matt had 6) I have to hand it to McKinleyville. They went right at Arcata's front line that is 6'10", 6'6" and 6'6" across in the front court. The Tigers are still looking for that on the court leader that will take control. But they still will win the league.
(Dan Squire and Christian Hill do a great job on 106.3 KJNY if you just want to listen. Their post game is great!)
Fortuna High is playing Nate Ambrosini, a Freshman, at point guard. He scored 19 points the other day. Has any other Humboldt County High School Freshman ever scored that many on a Varsity squad? They have another Freshman playing. They will be tough in 2 years.
Robin and I went to a CR men's game recently and I remarked that there were less local players than I have ever remembered. (There is one.) She said to me, "if there were ever less, there would be none!" Maybe that explains the small crowd.
Robin and I went an HSU men's game early this year and I was just not that impressed. I felt they would be a .500 team compared to last years squad. I have been pleasantly wrong. I also witnessed Coach Steve Kinder and all of his staff at a recent High School game. I realize there is not much chance for any of these players to be able to play for the Jacks, but it is classy that they are there.
A New Eureka Democratic Club called the “Eureka Progressive Democratic Club” will be meeting Thursday, January 27th at 7pm at the Humboldt County Democratic Headquarters, 129 5th St. in Eureka.
I find it kind of strange that there is a need for a “progressive” branch locally. Why? Let me outline a few reasons. First, let us compare the “Progressive Democrats of America (PDA)” platform with the “Humboldt County Democratic Central Committee (HCDCC).”
1. The PDA would like to stop War Occupations. The HCDCC platform on this issue is:
I. Democracy and ParticipationWe believe that...B. The United States must work cooperatively with all other nations of the world, treat all people with human dignity, and use force only as an absolute last resort.
So they are in agreement.
2. The PDA believes in Healthcare for All with Economic and Social Justice. The HCDCC platform on these issues are:
II. Social Justice
Everyone in our democracy is entitled to equal protection under the law regardless of race, gender, ethnic identification, age, religious affiliation, sexual orientation, physical or mental disability, and/or socioeconomic status.
A. Everyone has a right to live in a community, state and country that enables all to exercise their rights to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. B. Everyone has a right to access to affordable health care. C. Every woman is entitled to the right to make her own reproductive health care decisions. D. Every person has the right to make her or his own health care decisions. E. Everyone has an inherent constitutional right to protection from invasion of privacy, by government or corporations.
Again, in alignment with each other.
3. The PDA is concerned about global warming and the environment. The HCDCC platform on this issue is:
III. Environmental Protection
We believe that it is the duty of our democracy to... • Protect and sustainably use the natural resources of our community, state, country, and world. • Guarantee safe and healthy food, water and air. • Enact legislation and policies that promote sustainable forms of energy and the conservation of fossil fuels. • Protect, preserve and restore the Nation’s ecosystems. • Prevent resource exploitation that violates public trust. • Reduce, reuse and recycle.
Once again the PDA and HCDCC are joined.
As far as economics, I am sure the PDA would be good with the HCDCC on the economy.
We believe that it is the duty of our democracy to ensure that...
• Jobs provide a living wage. • Legislation and policies encourage the creation of jobs that contribute to a sustainable economy and environment. • All local, state, and federal governments and agencies of government are fiscally responsible. • Legislation and policies promote the availability of affordable, safe housing for all. • The deficit of the federal government is not passed on to the next generation. • The deficit of the federal government is decreased without shrinking programs that benefit the poor, young, old or disabled. • Fair taxation for all where all members of society pay their fair share toward the common good. • Workers’ pensions and social security are protected and strengthened. • All levels of government work diligently to see that no child, senior citizen or disabled person lives in poverty.
So why the need of a “progressive” chapter of the HCDCC? It is all is about the elephant in the room. The Marina Center. There. I said it. If you are for any kind of development on the Balloon tract/track you are considered an outcast to the far left liberals on the HCDCC. And now those who disagree with their “fellow democrats” want to isolate themselves further with creation of this separate Political Action Committee branch of the HCDCC. Even though both types of Democrats agree with all of the HCDCC platforms! Just sad we have to be so divided as a community of Democrats. Next meeting of the HCDCC is this Wednesday at 7pm across from Denny’s in Eureka. All Democrats are welcome. Even you with the Marina Center sweaters. We are the party of tolerance, are we not?
Rex Bohn gave a very classy/gracious speech about the nomination process and the choice of Melinda to the Eureka City Council. Then Linda Atkins moved for approval and a 4-0 vote sealed the deal. I know there has been 3 women on the Eureka City Council in the past, but 3 registered Democrats? Gutsy choice by Mayor Jager.
I am sure you have heard the unwritten rule of life not drinking alcohol before noon, but what other rules of life do we have? Here is my top ten. I am sure some will not even make sense to some of you:
10. Yes. You will always pick the slowest lines at Costco, the slowest moving traffic lanes and the wrong time to do banking.
9. Never eat chicken before 11am. Unless you are having eggs.
8. Never sell a car to family or friends. Period.
7. You are not where you live, what you drive, or what you wear. (But others will judge you by these.)
6. Never give your adversaries the tools of your own demise.
5. A line of credit does not equal savings.
4. Chances are, those unruly kids coming through the restaurant doors are going to be seated next to you. Every time!
3. We all dine at the table of the consequences of our decisions. Choose from the menu wisely.
2. Before you criticize, analyze. Then have at it.
1. If you wait for someone else to take action, expect disappointment.