Mendo Island Journal — Timely. Useful. Sometimes Cranky.

Archive for April, 2010|Monthly archive page

Mendo Island War of Words: John Sakowicz vs. Beth Bosk vs. KZYX vs. The AVA (Updated)

In Around Mendo Island, Mendo Island News Service on April 4, 2010 at 4:16 pm

Mendo Island News Service

New Settler

Anybody besides me had it with John Sakowicz.?!! (And KZYX/Z for that matter for giving such a known charlatan so much air time, while disallowing any measured challenge to his authenticity.)

Sakowicz was here in the early 1990s, too busy identity-thefting the Mendocino Youth Projects’ website for his own gain,  talking himself into the foremanship of the Mendocino County grand jury (by posing as a “retired attorney”–then immediately signing the Grand Jury’s training check over to himself) to do anything as sturdy as joining the earnest collaboration to keep then healthy  forests standing.

John circuitously engineered himself into ‘The Truth About Money’ show by claiming to be “the founder and manager of a multi-billion dollar offshore hedge fund”, hinting during those dire months of $100,000 debt, that he would create a hedge fund trust for KZYX. Sakowicz has managed to climb up the alternative media ladder because no one with say-so in media had bothered to vet him, or as in the case of John Coate and KZYX/Z news director Paul  Hanson, didn’t care… When I repeatedly asked to do a one-hour special on Sacowicz’s climb up the ladder (any ladder) through saturated volunteerism, Coate said he didn’t like my tone. When Christina Aanestad inched toward the story, he ordered her to stay away from it.

It’s a disgrace. Sakowicz  has become the most prominent public face of KZYX/Z; attending to his own fledgling financial dealies on both his Friday morning public affairs show and his too regular input on the local news; while someone as earnest and authentically representative of her peers as Johanna Schultz has been capriciously kicked off the air for “insubordination”, for standing up for the free speech, Constitutionally protected rights of the new breed of conscientious, politically and spiritually involved and motivated hip hop artists, who in the long tradition of American rebels and revolutionaries have reclaimed portions of the language as acts of political action. After eight years in the small, cold, satellite studio in Mendocino, deliberately choosing to broadcast during the late night ‘Safe Harbor’ hours, so she would not have to censor the genre, Johanna’s program was cancelled in a one sentence hem and hawed message left on her answering machine by Mary Aigner. more→

Actress morphs fully into her punked-out character

In Books on April 4, 2010 at 12:58 pm

The Philadelphia Inquirer
Via Miami Herald

Lisbeth Salander, the seriously screwed-up heroine of Stieg Larsson’s mega-bestseller The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, is wire-thin, punked-out, angry. As the title says, she’s tattooed. She’s pierced on face and body, is adept at martial arts, is a computer brainiac, and she’s an abrasive, antisocial soul with a history of sexual abuse.

“I knew everything about her,” says Noomi Rapace, the 30-year-old actress who landed the role of Lisbeth — and stars opposite Michael Nyqvist as investigative reporter Mikael Blomkvist — in the massively successful screen adaptation.

Although Rapace, like hundreds of thousands of her fellow Swedes, had read Larsson’s book (original title: Men Who Hate Women) and was captivated by this crazy character, the idea of playing Lisbeth took some convincing. First, Rapace had to convince herself. Then she had to convince Oplev.

“Actually, I said to Niels the first time that we met, `If you want me to play Lisbeth I will become her. I will do everything to change and to transform into her,’ ” Rapace says. “I had this clear picture in my head, how she looked and who she was.”

For Oplev, Rapace was like “a gift.” The Danish director had his doubts going into the project that he could find anyone to play this strange, damaged creature.

“I really felt that Lisbeth Salander would be next to impossible to find,” Oplev says. “I saw Noomi in another film and I was struck by her, but I thought she was too pretty to play Lisbeth. But then I did a two-hour rehearsal with her, and that dark energy came through. When she’s on screen, you want to watch her, see what she does next.

“Readers of Larsson’s book have a very physical image in mind, and then an emotional image, as well. And I knew that I had to match the emotional image as much as I had to match the physical likeness,” he says.

Rapace, who’d told Oplev that if she won the part she would transform herself totally, then did just that. more→

Free Virtual School

In Around the web on April 4, 2010 at 12:09 pm


[One person. A dream. WOW!! -DS]

Salman Khan is the man behind Khan Academy, a 2009 Tech Award winning site with 12+ million views and 1200+ 10-minute “videos on YouTube covering everything from basic arithmetic and algebra to differential equations, physics, chemistry, biology and finance”. We talked with him about building “the world’s free virtual school”, the potential of open-access learning, using the format for sustainability debates, and challenges in growing a non-profit from zero to global impact.

Hassan Masum: Salman Khan, thanks so much for joining us today. First of all, tell us what Khan Academy is, and why it is significant.

Salman Khan: Well, its current incarnation is twelve hundred videos on YouTube – and other places, but YouTube is its main source of people connecting with it and finding out about it.

And there is a whole software piece that generates problems for people, and starts them off with one plus one equals two. The software piece will take them up to about Algebra II, but the video piece will start them at the most basic one plus one equals two level and take them well into college level calculus, linear algebra, differential equations, physics, chemistry, and biology.

The goal is to create the world’s free virtual school. Right now it’s more content, but there is a kind of community forming around it. And between the community that is forming around it, the video content, and the software, we can do data manipulation and understand how we can keep tweaking it and making it a better platform for people to learn on. I envision it as the world’s free virtual school.

More at WorldChanging

Book Reviews: Gone Tomorrow by Lee Child

In Books on April 4, 2010 at 12:07 pm


14 Book Reviews for “Gone Tomorrow: A Reacher Novel” by Lee Child

  • Child’s writing is both propulsive and remarkably error-free, and he’s expert at ratcheting up the tension while dispensing all manner of specific information…. Perhaps because it deals with international terrorism, this book is at once creepier and more serious than some others in the series, with not as many opportunities for the old demolition machine to go into action.
    Published the 19th day of May, 2009 in Los Angeles Times. Reviewed by Kenneth Turan | Full Review
    4/5 Stars4/5 Stars4/5 Stars4/5 Stars4/5 Stars
  • This is the 13th book in Child’s terrific series featuring Reacher, and it’s the most provocative and thrilling one yet…. From the opening sequence on the train, Child quickens the pace, layering double-crosses, deceits, conspiracies and clues until readers are hurtling across the pages.
    Published the 5th day of June, 2009 in Star Tribune. Reviewed by Carole E. Barrowman | Full Review
    4/5 Stars4/5 Stars4/5 Stars4/5 Stars4/5 Stars
  • It would be disingenuous to pretend that the main reason we enjoy Reacher isn’t the pleasure of the violence he inflicts on the bad guys. One defect of “Gone Tomorrow” is that it takes about 200 pages for Reacher to put a hurting on someone.
    Published the 5th day of June, 2009 in Newsday. Reviewed by Charles Taylor | Full Review
    3.5/5 Stars3.5/5 Stars3.5/5 Stars3.5/5 Stars3.5/5 Stars
  • “Gone Tomorrow” … is Child’s 13th over-the-top action-packed slammeroo, and it begins, as nearly all the others in this series have, with a damsel in distress…. Alas, there are some moments when the gears grind a bit.
    Published in The Philadelphia Inquirer. Reviewed by Bill Kent | Link Removed
    3.5/5 Stars3.5/5 Stars3.5/5 Stars3.5/5 Stars3.5/5 Stars
  • Lee Child’s formula is always the same: Jack Reacher, homeless former MP with a strong sense of right and wrong and an unexplained source of cash, blows into some town, rights wrongs, kills bad guys and moves on. Like Child’s other Reacher novels, “Gone Tomorrow” … works as sheer entertainment.
    Published in Kansas City Star. Reviewed by Leslie McGill | Link Removed more→

Mendo Food & Farming Forums

In !ACTION CENTER! on April 2, 2010 at 10:29 am

Anderson Valley

First of three…there will be another at the Garcia Grange on the 20th and a third at the Little Lake Grange in Willits (for the 3rd District) on the 29th.  Announcements will follow.


When is enough, enough?

In Around the web on April 2, 2010 at 7:43 am


We are heading toward economic, political and social collapse, and every day that passes brings it closer. But we just don’t know when to stop, do we? Which part of “the harder we try, the harder we fail” can’t we understand? Why can’t we understand that each additional dollar of debt will drive us into national bankruptcy faster, harder and deeper? Why can’t we grasp the concept that each additional dollar of military spending further undermines our security? Is there some sort of cognitive impairment that prevents us from understanding that each additional dollar sunk into the medical industry will only make us sicker? Why can’t we see that each incremental child we bear into this untenable situation will make life harder for all children? In short, what on earth is our problem?

Why can’t we stop? We can blame evolution, which has produced in us instincts that compel us to gorge ourselves when food is abundant, to build up fat reserves for the lean months. These instincts are not helpful to us when there is an all-you-can-eat buffet nearby that’s open year-round. These instincts are not even specifically ours: other animals don’t know when to stop either. Butterflies will feast on fermented fruit until they are too drunk to fly. Pigs will eat acorns until they are too fat to stand up and have to resort to crawling about on their bellies in order to, yes of course, eat more acorns. Americans who are too fat to walk are considered disabled and the government issues them with little motorized scooters so that they don’t have to suffer the indignity of crawling to the all-you-can-eat buffet on their bellies. This is considered progress.

More at

Fraud on the Street

In Around the web on April 1, 2010 at 11:55 am

Thanks to Janie Sheppard

The Securities and Exchange Commission announced Monday it had begun an inquiry into two dozen financial companies to determine whether they followed accounting practices similar to those recently disclosed in an investigation of Lehman Brothers.

Where on earth has the SEC been?

It’s now clear Lehman Brothers’ balance sheet was bogus before the bank collapsed in 2008, catapulting the Street and the world into the worse financial crisis since 1929. The Lehman bankruptcy examiner’s recent report details what just about everyone on the Street has known since the firm imploded – that Lehman defrauded its investors. Even Hank Paulson, in his recent memoir, referred to Lehman’s balance sheet as bogus.

In order to look like it could borrow $30 for every dollar of its own money, Lehman shifted liabilities off its books at the end of each quarter. Its CPA, Ernst and Young, approved of this fraud against the advice of its own whistle blower, whom Ernst and Young fired.

Lehman’s practices couldn’t have been all that different from those of every other big bank on the Street. After all, they were all competing for the same business, and using many of the same techniques. Lehman was just the first to go under, causing a financial run that led George W. to warn “this sucker could go down” unless the federal government came up with hundreds of billions to bail out the others. more→

Action Center! Stop U.S. Navy Warfare Testing Plans

In !ACTION CENTER! on April 1, 2010 at 8:46 am

Agriculture Defense Coalition
Redwood Valley

[This is a huge effort taken on by Rosalind to save our ocean, marine mammals, and fisheries! Petitions available at Mulligan Books. -DS]

I have put up every single piece of information I have on the U.S. Navy Warfare Testing Plans plus a couple of U.S. Air Force Documents here.  I hope that you will find this information of interest.

Also please note that I have an oceans section as well and will be updating this by Monday with all new ocean information that I have at this time.
See also The Biology of the Blue Whale – Slide lecture Thursday, April 15, 7pm, Ukiah Civic Center. See Events at

Hidden History of Cooperation in America

In Around the web, Books on April 1, 2010 at 8:11 am

Peak Oil Blues Blog

Fewer and fewer people are happily employed, according to Derek Bok, former President of Harvard, in his latest book. The only thing Americans hate more than working is commuting, but when he considers how we can get happier, he suggests doing less of neither. Being an unhappy worker seems to be a normal, natural condition, but is it? Our hidden history of working together says it is not.

Part of the puzzle in figuring out why income alone doesn’t make people jolly can be resolved by examining the active protests that happened when Americans moved from being self-employed to becoming employees. The revolt is part of the hidden history of cooperatives and communialism in America, written in a riveting book by John Curl called “For All the People.” This book goes a long way to answer the question of what people did during times of trouble.

A funny thing happens on the way down the limited resources slide: People get increasingly greedy or people become more cooperative, collective and communal.

Think of it this way: we’d have pretty dumb genes if, in a group of 100 people, we were all looking to be ‘top dog.’ What we truly despise is being ‘bottom dog.’

Wage Slaves
Today, few people understand the meaning of my tee-shirt that reads: “Work is the blackmail of survival.” Today, we understand that “work” means “employment.” This would not have been so two hundred years ago.

More at Peak Oil Blues Blog
See also Mondragon: The Loving Society That Is Our Future


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