Farmers Market News


From Scott Cratty

Greetings  –

Happy New Year!

This Saturday Ukiah’s 1st farmers’ market of 2009 will almost surely be bigger than the close of 2008 (which was cold, spare and poorly attended … the smallest on record by a wide margin).  Thanks to you hardy few who attended.  My apology to the couple of you who arrived close to 1 p.m. and found us packing up … it was just too cold for a few of the vendors after the propane tank for the heater ran dry.

Lots of good signs for the start of 2009.  Pedro Ortiz should be back from vacation. Mendocino Organics will be back as will most of our other regular vendors (don’t forget to keep up with Paula’s great blog.)  With a bit of luck somewhat calmer waters should also increase the range of fish.

We will have Jerry Krantmanback with his eclectic acoustic music … he might even let you sing along with a tune or two.  Plus, it should be a bit warmer.  Heck, it might even crack 50.  I will be refilling the propane tank just in case.

Don’t forget to get your ticket for our new raffle.  Loads of fine stuff.

As always, the market is in Alex Thomas Plaza on Saturday from 9:30 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Check Friday’s UDJ for part two of my New Year’s food rant.

Community Announcement:

Learn how to create your own Victory Garden.  A free class for beginners presented by Mendocino County’s Master Gardeners that will cover how to choose a garden location, play the layout, prepare the soil, plant, irrigate and maintain a garden.  Bring a picture or map of your yard and a jar with tight fitting lid half full of dirt from the location you wish to plant. January 17, 8:30-noon, 2240 Old River Rd.   To register contact JT via email at jtwilli@ucdavisedu or call 463-4495.

See you at the market.

…and the band played on…


From Evan Johnson

Media conglomerate owner Singleton has steadfastly maintained his company is financially sound and honoring its financial commitments.

Media company announces employee benefit cuts
Written by Elizabeth Larson
Wednesday, 31 December 2008

LAKEPORT – The parent company of the Lake County Record-Bee [Ukiah Daily Journal, et. al.] gave employees some not-very-happy holiday news this week, telling them that the company is cutting its matching contributions to the 401(k) retirement plan.
Moody’s Investors Services downgraded nearly all of the company’s $1 billion in debt further into junk status, reaching a non-investment grade rating of “Caa3,” which according to an Associated Press report is the third-lowest rating on Moody’s scale.

Moody had previously downgraded MediaNews’ debt in May. Three months later, the company sold its Connecticut newspaper holdings, including the Connecticut Post and seven non-daily newspapers, to Hearst Corp.

The rating downgrades are based on Moody’s lowered opinion of the company’s ability to meet its financial obligations after a 16-percent decline in revenue for the third quarter, and concerns over a revolving $175 million credit facility that comes due in December 2009, according to the Associated Press.

The Associated Press noted that the downgrade also has the impact of making it harder for MediaNews to find new financing because of default concerns.

[Let’s get these local newspapers back into local, independent ownership. The $800,000 that leaves our county every year from the UDJ to parts known (Asia) and unknown, would be better used circulating in our community. Also, rumors of The Bullhorn resurrection are encouraging. Go for it, Laura and Sid! -DS]

Whole Lotta Shakin Goin On

From Lisa Mammina
New Year’s Eve Party
Celebrate with Great Music and Good Friends
Appetizers and Drinks
8:00 pm to 1:00 am
Over 21 Crowd
No Host Bar
$20 Per Person
107 S. Oak St., Downtown Ukiah
More Info? Call 707.467.8229

See also Live Hulu Coverage of Times Square 2009

Henry David Sez


One says to me, ‘I wonder that you do not lay up money; you love to travel; you might take the [railroad] cars and go to Fitchberg today and see the country.’ But I am wiser than that. I have learned that the swiftest traveller is he that goes afoot. I say to my friend, Suppose we try who will get there first. The distance is thirty miles; the fare ninety cents. That is almost a day’s wages. I remember when wages were sixty cents a day for laborers on this very road. Well, I start now on foot, and get there before night; I have travelled at that rate by the week together. You will in the meanwhile have earned your fare, and arrive there some time tomorrow, or possibly this evening, if you are lucky enough to get a job in season. Instead of going to Fitchburg, you will be working here the greater part of the day. And so, if the railroad reached around the world, I think that I should keep ahead of you; and as for seeing the country and getting the experience of that kind, I should have to cut your acquaintance altogether.

It is remarkable that there is little or nothing to be remembered written on the subject of getting a living; how to make getting a living not merely honest and honorable, but altogether inviting and glorious; for if getting a living is not so, then living is not.

It is not enough to be industrious; so are the ants. What are you industrious about?

With all your science can you tell how it is, and whence it is, the light that comes into the soul?

Pursue some path, however narrow and crooked, in which you can walk with love and reverence. Wherever a man separates from the multitude and goes his own way, there is a fork in the road, though the travelers along the highway see only a gap in the paling.

Pursue, keep up with, circle round and round your life, as a dog does his master’s chaise. Do what you love. Know your own bone; gnaw at it, bury it, unearth it, and gnaw it still.

See also A Timbered Choir by Wendell Berry
(Tip of the hat to Dave Pollard)

Tree News from Friends of Gibson Creek


From Linda Sanders
Friends of Gibson Creek

Tree Friends-

On  December 17, 2008 the City Council chambers packed with students from the City of Ten Thousand Buddhas and members of Compassion for Animals, Respect for the Earth (CARE) voiced their request for changing the language in the existing animal related code from owner to guardian. The tree protection supporters voiced their support of a city tree

Council briefly discussed the benefits of a tree committee versus commission and decided to re-agendize Tree Ordinance, Tree
Commission or Tree Committee, Existing Policies and Recommendations and Plans for sometime in March. City staff created the 12/17 agenda item that listed nine competing interests for the 12/17 meeting, of course it placed us at a disadvantage in vying for the Council’s attention. Council voted 4-1 for changing the animal regulation language to guardian. Tree protection will take time.

Do come to the Planning Commission meeting on 1/14/08.

Ohio Amish Farmers Food Co-op Raided – KZYX Tuesday Ecology Hour 7-8pm


From Steve Scalmanini

via Doug Mosel

Various news reports:

Ohio authorities stormed a farm house in LaGange Monday, December 1, to execute a search warrant, holding the Jacqueline and John Stowers and their son and young grandchildren at gunpoint for nine hours. During the raid the Ohio Department of Agriculture and police confiscated over ten thousand dollars worth of food, computers and cell phones. The Stowers’ crime? They run a private, members-only food co-op.

While state authorities were looking for evidence of illegal activities,
the family was not informed what crime they were suspected of, they were not read their rights or allowed to make a phone call. The children, some as young as toddlers, were traumatized by armed officers interrogating the adults with guns drawn.

The Morning Journal, a newspaper serving northern Ohio, reported that the Stowers were believed to be operating without a license. However, the Stowers claim that the food co-op they run does not engage in any activities that would require state licensing.

Friends of the Stowers openly question why such aggressive tactics were necessary to investigate a licensing complaint.

The Ohio Department of Agriculture has apparently been chastised by the courts in previous cases for over-reach, including entrapment of an Amish man to sell raw milk, which backfired, when it became known that the man gave milk instead of selling it to a state undercover agent, refusing to take money for what he believed to be a charitable act. The Amish literally interpret the Gospel of Matthew (5:42) to “give to him that asketh thee, and from him that would borrow of thee turn not thou away.”

The matter has been forwarded to the Lorain County Prosecutor’s Office and the Lorain County General Health District according to Lorain County court records.

Locabucks: Are local currencies the answer?

From Dave Smith
More at Mendo Moola


On July 5th 1932, in the middle of the Great Depression, the Austrian town of Wörgl made economic history by introducing a remarkable complimentary currency. Wörgl was in trouble, and was prepared to try anything. Of its population of 4,500, a total of 1,500 people were without a job, and 200 families were penniless.

The mayor, Michael Unterguggenberger, had a long list of projects he wanted to accomplish, but there was hardly any money with which to carry them out. These included repaving the roads, streetlighting, extending water distribution across the whole town, and planting trees along the streets.

Rather than spending the 40,000 Austrian schillings in the town’s coffers to start these projects off, he deposited them in a local savings bank as a guarantee to back the issue of a type of complimentary currency known as ’stamp scrip’. This requires a monthly stamp to be stuck on all the circulating notes for them to remain valid, and in Wörgl, the stamp amounted 1% of the each note’s value. The money raised was used to run a soup kitchen that fed 220 families.

Because nobody wanted to pay what was effectively a hoarding fee [technically known as ‘demurrage’ and often referred to as “negative interest”], everyone receiving the notes would spend them as fast as possible. The 40,000 schilling deposit allowed anyone to exchange scrip for 98 per cent of its value in schillings. This offer was rarely taken up though.

Of all the business in town, only the railway station and the post office refused to accept the local money. When people ran out of spending ideas, they would pay their taxes early using scrip, resulting in a huge increase in town revenues. Over the 13-month period the project ran, the council not only carried out all the intended works projects, but also built new houses, a reservoir, a ski jump, and a bridge. The people also used scrip to replant forests, in anticipation of the future cashflow they would receive from the trees.

The key to its success was the fast circulation of scrip within the local economy, 14 times higher than the schilling. This in turn increased trade, creating extra employment. At the time of the project, Wörgl was the only Austrian town to achieve full employment.

Six neighbouring villages copied the system successfully. The French Prime Minister, Eduoard Dalladier, made a special visit to see the ‘miracle of Wörgl’. In January 1933, the project was replicated in the neighbouring city of Kirchbuhl, and in June 1933, Unterguggenburger addressed a meeting with representatives from 170 different towns and villages. Two hundred Austrian townships were interested in adopting the idea.

Unterguggenberger was opposed to both communism and fascism, championing instead what he referred to as ‘economic freedom’. Therefore, it was deeply ironic that the Wörgl experiment was first branded ‘craziness’ by the monetary authorities, then a Communist idea, and some years later as a fascist one.

Continue reading full article at The Oil Drum

See also Beyond Greed and Scarcity at Yes Magazine

This and That and DDR


From Janie Sheppard

This post will most likely turn out to be a bit of this and that, locally inspired. A bit of this: I wish someone would tell us exactly what DDR, would be developer of the old Masonite site, is up to. Are they folding their tent? All I know is that Jeff Adams, DDR’s local man-on-the-scene, isn’t answering phone calls, even from people who were (are?) working with him. We do know that DDR, apparently without any qualms on the part of the Board of Supervisors, tore up all the railroad track on the property, which would be a strange thing to do if DDR was thinking of unloading the property, or maybe not. Mysteries abound. On a related matter, could someone who attended the December 14th meeting of Mendocino County Tomorrow report on what’s going on with that group?

The larger question posed by DDR’s plans is: Who does DDR envision its customers would be? Mervyn’s couldn’t make it, Kohl’s thinks it can even while more county residents have less money to spend. I’m curious how they figure that. Long suspicious of marketing studies I wouldn’t be surprised to learn that whoever conducted the original DDR marketing study was using made-up numbers, just like Ponzi scheme master, Bernie Madoff. Likewise, whoever conducted the marketing study for Kohl’s.

On the subject of made-up numbers one memorable scene comes to mind: Supervisor Colfax expressing disbelief that DDR’s proposed development would result in an increase of 26 eating establishments hereabouts. Disbelief seems too mild a word; astonishment perhaps? And yet on the basis of patently ludicrous numbers shopping centers get built. Not all succeed. In the end, I suspect their success or failure has little to do with the forecasts in a marketing study and more to do with elusive factors such as feng shui. There isn’t a lot of feng shui at the Mervyn’s site, which is owned by DDR, as Evan Johnson’s ironic photo shows. If Kohl’s succeeds, obviously I’m wrong, but I’d rather see the building demolished and a community garden established on the site, growing vegetables for the local food bank, Plowshares, and the Ford Street Project. The feng shui would emerge, people would eat, and profits would be in the form of healthier local residents.

The local farmer’s market at Alex Thomas Plaza has quite a different vibe: Local merchants selling fresh, locally grown food, handmade toys, beautiful woolen hats and scarves, and cosmetics, some of which I captured in a photo post. I’m spending whatever I can afford there, where the local merchants are appreciative and helpful and the profits stay at home. Why should I help DDR or Kohl’s when their profits go to huge out-of-state corporations? And what the local merchants don’t carry (yet) I will try to do without, or buy at a thrift shop, where the profits stay right here.

For a winter vacation we went to Mendocino to stay at the Stanford Inn, within 50 miles of our house, but with all the amenities of far-away fancy resorts. There, the profits do not get sucked up by a big corporate chain, but are plowed right back into the business and the county. It is a great way to get away while keeping your money at home . . . My grandson was drawn like a magnet to the electric train set up under a lovingly adorned Christmas tree; Bill and I loved the imaginative food, and my daughter and son-in-law loved the huge swimming pool and the hot tub. The dogs loved the strange smells, the other dogs, and the cats (well, love isn’t quite the right word for the cats, but their tails did wag).

And that’s it for today.

See also The Mall Man’s Dreams For Ukiah at the AVA→

The Idea of a Local Economy

Excerpts from The Idea of a Local Economy
Orion Magazine (2001)
Wendell Berry

A total economy is one in which everything—“life forms,” for instance,—or the “right to pollute” is “private property” and has a price and is for sale. In a total economy significant and sometimes critical choices that once belonged to individuals or communities become the property of corporations.

A total economy, operating internationally, necessarily shrinks the powers of state and national governments, not only because those governments have signed over significant powers to an international bureaucracy or because political leaders become the paid hacks of the corporations but also because political processes—and especially democratic processes—are too slow to react to unrestrained economic and technological development on a global scale. And when state and national governments begin to act in effect as agents of the global economy, selling their people for low wages and their people’s products for low prices, then the rights and liberties of citizenship must necessarily shrink. A total economy is an unrestrained taking of profits from the disintegration of nations. communities, households, landscapes, and ecosystems. It licenses symbolic or artificial wealth to “grow” by means of the destruction of the real wealth of all the world…

Aware of industrialism’s potential for destruction, as well as the considerable political danger of great concentrations of wealth and power in industrial corporations, American leaders developed, and for a while used, the means of limiting and restraining such concentrations, and of somewhat equitable distributing wealth and property. The means were: laws against trusts and monopolies, the principle of collective bargaining, the concept of one-hundred-percent parity between the land-using and the manufacturing economies, and the progressive income tax. And to protect domestic producers and production capacities it is possible for governments to impose tariffs on cheap imported goods. These means are justified by the government’s obligation to protect the lives, livelihoods, and freedoms of its citizens. There is, then, no necessity or inevitability requiring our government to sacrifice the livelihoods or our small farmers, small business people, and workers, along with our domestic economic independence to the global “free market.” But now all of these means are either weakened or in disuse. The global economomy is intended as a means of subverting them.

Continue reading The Idea of a Local Economy

Solar letter to Obama

From Michael Laybourn

I was contacted by the Obama Transition Team for input. So I did some input for them, wondering if anyone would ever read it, much less take some action. Here is what I wrote:

Transition Team:

Thanks for this opportunity.

Solar could meet 74% to 86% of total US residential electricity demands by 2010 and 2025, respectively. (Navigant Consulting study)

A solar house can power a new electric vehicle or plug-in hybrid and it could provide enough electricity to be its own energy source. Multiply that for over 200 million cars to drive 12k miles per year. That’s enough to replace the oil we currently import.

How do we get there?

If the government subsidized 1/2 to 2/3 the cost of a home or small business solar system and did low interest loans for the rest of the cost, it would be very attractive for anyone (with enough sun) to go solar. Then, as they did in Germany, have the utility companies pay for the electricity they would be receiving at a somewhat higher than market rate until the loans are paid off. Then when the loans are paid off, the utilities could pay the market rate and possibly purchase the electricity cheaper than it costs now, even though clean energy is worth more as a product.

Clean energy creates millions of jobs, helps global warming, and creates the infrastructure for electric autos.

Don’t subsidize? Let me scoff: We subsidize the auto and oil industry with highways, tax credits and bailouts. We have always subsidized nuclear and coal both in research and  tax breaks. We have not included the costs of cleanup (the Superfund, etc), which is another subsidy. We seem to be stupidly subsidizing Wall Street without any checks and balances at the moment.
Clean energy is the smartest way to help the economy, release us from dependence on oil and rebuild our national infrastructure.


Now, in your mind, transfer this locally. The City of Ukiah would end up with very cheap energy, I think.

Monumental Times


From Earl Brown

[Earl Brown, one of our community treasures, has been fighting the good environmental fight for many years at great personal sacrifice. Find him hanging out at Ukiah’s Coffee Critic in the mornings, and at the Brewpub at all hours, when he’s not off saving the planet. Talk to him. Listen to his wisdom. Feel the passion and commitment of an earth warrior. He is here for you and me and all of us. He cares more deeply about our environmental predicament, and involves himself in living the change without self-aggrandizement, more than anyone I know. The old commercial says “I wanna be like Mike.” No thanks. I’d rather be more like Earl. -DS]

We are living in monumental times. There is nothing small about world events and circumstances as we enter 2009 and the challenges we face are going to get tougher and more eminent in our lives. Our political system, long abused by the rich elite and corporate pressure, has succumbed to the fear mongering and manipulation by these special interests, they have bought into perpetual war, the diminishment of civil liberties, environmentally destructive consumerism, religious fundamentalism and the economic enslavement of its citizenry.

It is a good thing that we are monumental Beings, not here to lead “normal” lives. It is a good thing to know, during these time of collapse and re-structuring, that our human-ness, our ability to be human, our Human Potential has yet to be tapped. It is good to know that we are up to the challenges that the knowledge, creativity, imagination and energy exists within us and within all of Life. The question is: Do we have the “will” to come together, to make the little sacrifices in our own lives that are needed to make the changes we know need to be made?

Continue reading Monumental Times

Redeeming the future

From Gail Johnson

This is about the bigger natural community we are in. Just an excerpt. Perhaps interesting and germane.

By Chief Oren Lyons, Faithkeeper of Onondaga nation
Interview from Book, “A Seat at the Table” by Huston Smith 2006 Univ. of Calif. Press p.174

Redeeming the Future

All Indian nations, as far as I know, have this profound understanding of and belief in the Creation. We believe that the Creation was perfect, and the Creation was profoundly diverse, from the smallest creatures to the varieties of bugs, the varieties of plants, the varieties of fish, the varieties of trees, and the varieties of peoples. They were all different, and they were all interconnected, and they were all related.

In fact, what you had was community. You had a world community of life. A life that really existed in what I would call the Great Law of Regeneration. The greatest natural law is the law of regeneration, the ability to regenerate endlessly as long as you maintain the rules of the law, which is variety. So if you tamper with variety then you are challenging the laws of regeneration, which of course means that it’s the human beings who are doing it. Absolutely the only ones who are doing it. They are now challenging the process of life itself. They put themselves in jeopardy now because in our understanding and in our belief, you can never challenge these laws. You can only abide by them. You can only understand them.

But if you challenge natural law and think you are going to change it, then eventually you are going to come to that crisis point where life is not regenerating itself anymore.

One of our Indian leaders said, “Only after you cut the last tree, and only after you’ve caught the last fish, and only after there is nothing left; only then will you realize that you can’t eat coal.

“Only after.”

“All of these rights spell security…”

FDR’s Economic Bill of Rights

It is our duty now to begin to lay the plans and determine the strategy for the winning of a lasting peace and the establishment of an American standard of living higher than ever before known. We cannot be content, no matter how high that general standard of living may be, if some fraction of our people—whether it be one-third or one-fifth or one-tenth—is ill-fed, ill-clothed, ill-housed, and insecure.

This Republic had its beginning, and grew to its present strength, under the protection of certain inalienable political rights—among them the right of free speech, free press, free worship, trial by jury, freedom from unreasonable searches and seizures. They were our rights to life and liberty.

As our nation has grown in size and stature, however—as our industrial economy expanded—these political rights proved inadequate to assure us equality in the pursuit of happiness.

We have come to a clear realization of the fact that true individual freedom cannot exist without economic security and independence. “Necessitous men are not free men.” People who are hungry and out of a job are the stuff of which dictatorships are made.

In our day these economic truths have become accepted as self-evident. We have accepted, so to speak, a second Bill of Rights under which a new basis of security and prosperity can be established for all—regardless of station, race, or creed.

Among these are:

The right to a useful and remunerative job in the industries or shops or farms or mines of the nation;

The right to earn enough to provide adequate food and clothing and recreation;

The right of every farmer to raise and sell his products at a return which will give him and his family a decent living;

The right of every businessman, large and small, to trade in an atmosphere of freedom from unfair competition and domination by monopolies at home or abroad;

The right of every family to a decent home;

The right to adequate medical care and the opportunity to achieve and enjoy good health;

The right to adequate protection from the economic fears of old age, sickness, accident, and unemployment;

The right to a good education.

All of these rights spell security. And after this war is won we must be prepared to move forward, in the implementation of these rights, to new goals of human happiness and well-being.

America’s own rightful place in the world depends in large part upon how fully these and similar rights have been carried into practice for our citizens.

Self-Reliance vs. Self-Sufficiency

From So Shall We Reap, Colin Tudge
via The Transition Handbook, Rob Hopkins

A system of farming that was truly designed to feed people and to go on doing so for the indefinite future, would be founded primarily on mixed farms and local production. In general, each country (or otherwise convenient political or geographical unit) would contrive to be self-reliant in food. Self-reliant does not mean self-sufficient. A self-sufficient country would produce absolutely everything that it needed, and would not trade with outsiders and this, for most countries, would be a non-sense…

Self-reliance does mean, however, that each country [or county or region – Ed.] would produce its own basic foods, and be able to get by in a crisis. Strategically, this can be highly desirable. Britain found this in both world wars, when the entire country was under siege. Today, surely, most poor countries would benefit from basic self-reliance, and might well make this their prime goal, even if they also attempt to compete in world markets with rivals that have various kinds of head start.

See also Disaster Farming

Oppose Tom Vilsack’s Confirmation as Secretary of Agriculture

From Organic Consumers Union via John McCowen

Despite a massive public outcry, including over 20,000 emails from the Organic Consumers Association, President-Elect Obama has chosen former Iowa Governor Tom Vilsack to be the next Secretary of Agriculture.

While Vilsack has promoted respectable policies with respect to restraining livestock monopolies, his overall record is one of aiding and abetting Concentrated Animal Feeding Operations (CAFOs) or factory farms and promoting genetically engineered crops and animal cloning. Equally troubling is Vilsack’s support for unsustainable industrial ethanol production, which has already caused global corn and grain prices to skyrocket, literally taking food off the table for a billion people in the developing world.

The Organic Consumers Association is calling on organic consumers and all concerned citizens to join our call to action and block Vilsack’s confirmation as the next Secretary of Agriculture. Please help us reach our goal of 100,000 petition signatures against Vilsack’ nomination. Sign today!

Go to Sign Petition

See also A food agenda for Obama – change we can eat

The barn raising


From the original Contrary Farmer, Gene Logsdon, over at

The summer tornado that touched down in Holmes County left a path of destruction cut as cleanly into the landscape as a swath mown through the middle of a hayfield. The wind plucked up giant oaks, tulip poplars, ashes, and maples and laid them down in crisscrossed, splintered chaos through the Amish woodland. With the same nicety for borderline definition, the tornado sliced through Amish farmsteads, capriciously reducing barns to kindling while ignoring buggy sheds, chicken coops, corncribs, and houses close by. In the twenty-minute dance that the tornado performed before exiting into the wings of the sky as abruptly as it had come, it destroyed at least fifteen acres of mature forest a hundred years or more in the growing, and four barns that represented the collected architectural wisdom of several centuries of rural tradition.

But what followed in the wake of the tornado during the next three weeks was just as awesome as the wind itself. In that time—three weeks—the forest devastation was sawed into lumber and transformed into four big new barns. No massive effort of bulldozers, cranes, semi-trucks, or the National Guard was involved. The surrounding Amish community rolled up its sleeves, hitched up its horses and did it all. Nor were the barns the quick-fix modern structures of sheet metal hung on posts stuck in the ground. They were massive three-story affairs of post-and-beam framing, held together with hundreds of hand-hewn mortises and tenons.

A building contractor, walking through the last of the barns to be completed, could only shake his head in disbelief. Even with a beefed-up crew, it would have taken him most of the summer to build this barn alone and it would have cost the farmer $100,000, if in fact he could have found such huge girder beams at any price.

Continue reading The Barn Raising at

A little scary…

From Michael Laybourn

At the time I first saw this it was kind of funny. Now… It’s a little scary…
Dear Beloved American:
“I need to ask you to support an urgent secret business relationship with a transfer of funds of great magnitude.
I am Ministry of the Treasury of the Republic of America. My country has had crisis that has caused the need for large transfer of funds of 800 billion USD. If you would assist me in this transfer, it would be most profitable to you.

I am working with Mr. Phil Gramm, lobbyist for UBS, who (God willing) will be my replacement as Ministry of the Treasury in January. As a former U.S. congressional leader and the architect of the PALIN / McCain Financial Doctrine, you may know him as the leader of the American banking deregulation movement in the 1990s. As such, you can be assured that this transaction is 100% safe.

This is a matter of great urgency. We need a blank check. We need the funds as quickly as possible. We cannot directly transfer these funds in the names of our close friends because we are constantly under surveillance. My family lawyer advised me that I should look for a reliable and trustworthy person who will act as a next of kin so the funds can be transferred.

Please reply with all of your bank account, IRA and college fund account numbers and those of your children and grandchildren to so that we may transfer your commission for this transaction. After I receive that information, I will respond with detailed information about safeguards that will be used to protect the funds.
Yours Faithfully Minister of Treasury Paulson”

Lo and behold! He got the blank check and no one can tell him what to do with it. What is left after these giveaways? No one knows, neither Congress nor the American people.

Continue reading A little scary…

Ukiah Farmers Market Saturday

From Scott Cratty

Family is in town, gifts have been given, the post holiday sales were all shopped yesterday, leftovers are dwindling … what to do in Ukiah with friends and family on a post holiday Saturday morning?

How about showing off our pretty historic downtown and stopping in at the Saturday Farmers’ Market? The market will be small and mellow (we will not have live music to save those talented fingers from the cold, we will be spinning local music on the boombox). A few vendors will be out with their own families but we should still have lots of great local foods and some quality local crafts you can get with the dollars you got trading in that electric ear warmers from Uncle Floyd.

Stop in and enjoy a baked good to support the Ford Street Project, have a cup of fair trade, organic Thanksgiving coffee and share a smile. Getting some fresh local food also is a great way to keep your strength up for all next week’s parties, like the one at the Saturday Afternoon Club…

New Year’s Party PAY IT FORWARD, RING IT IN, JUST DANCE! Celebrate with Great Music and Good Friends. Appetizers and Drinks 8:00 pm to 1:00 am. Over 21 Crowd. No Host Bar. $20 Per Person 107 S. Oak St., Downtown Ukiah . More Info? Call 707.467.8229

There is a slide show version of WELL co-founder Dr. Jason Bradford’s video on this blog at Scenario 2020: The Future of Food in Mendocino County… a “history” of how Mendocino County survived the economic and social upheaval of 2009 and learned how to feed itself. The slide show version is here

Check Friday’s edition of the UDJ for Part I of my first (and likely only) New Year’s rant.

See you at the market.

Solstice Renewal

From Jeff Cox over at

After holding my six week old granddaughter in my arms this afternoon, I had a revelation about Christmas. All my life, I thought the celebration was about the arrival of the redeemer in the form of a particular baby 2,000 years ago. But today I realized that there’s a larger context to the Christmas story.

Looking at the sleeping baby in my arms, I saw that every baby has the potential to be a redeemer. Every newborn could grow to become a savior. Each new baby is a blank slate on which may be written a deep and meaningful story. Every baby should have three kings come to worship him or her, and give that baby precious gifts. Who knows who that little person is, or will become? Every newborn is a renewal of the pledge of life: that we will grow stronger and better and more valuable than ever before. And all that hope is wrapped tightly in the body and soul of a newborn babe.

Continue reading Solstice Renewal at

A Japanese town that kicked the oil habit

From Steve Scalmanini
This short article is downright inspirational, thinking about what we could do locally. The $6,000 per resident cost is comparable to the typical current price of putting solar on a single family dwelling – roughly $20,000. Assuming three people per dwelling, that’d be $18K. Sounds doable to me…

Continue reading


Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 4,670 other followers