Monday, November 24, 2008

Eliot Spitzer, Help Us Take On Corporate Personhood!

Eliot Spitzer is the former Attorney General of New York State. As Attorney General he took on Wall Street corruption. He got 1.4 billion dollars in fines. See Wikipedia

He was elected to Governor and was trying to take on the Bush Administration over predatory lending practices and had the backing of 49 Attorneys General. February 2008

One month later: FROM THE NEW YORK TIMES

ALBANY - Gov. Eliot Spitzer, who gained national prominence relentlessly pursuing Wall Street wrongdoing, has been caught on a federal wiretap arranging to meet with a high-priced prostitute at a Washington hotel last month, according to a law enforcement official and a person briefed on the investigation.

One month after announcing that they were going to take on predatory lenders, the prostitution story surfaced. Shortly after, the Madame that ran the call girl ring was found dead, hanged in her mom's tool shed. Five months later, Wall St. collapsed.

Now that Eliot Spitzer has some time on his hands, I am asking him to take a look at crafting a law that would take away the right of corporations to be people. Something that would stand the test of the U.S. Constitution and something that a more well to do county or state could take on.

Measure T may be dead here in Humboldt County, partly because we can't afford to enforce it, but the idea lives on.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

To Restore Democracy: First Abolish Corporate Personhood

This is from author Thom Hartmann

Thomas Paine said it best.
“It has been thought,” he wrote in The Rights of Man in 1791, “…that government is a compact between those who govern and those who are governed; but this cannot be true, because it is putting the effect before the cause; for as man must have existed before governments existed, there necessarily was a time when governments did not exist, and consequently there could originally exist no governors to form such a compact with. The fact therefore must be, that the individuals themselves, each in his own personal and sovereign right, entered into a compact with each other to produce a government: and this is the only mode in which governments have a right to arise, and the only principle on which they have a right to exist.”

Thom Hartmann points out how a county clerk added the idea of corporate person hood in a footnote that had no authority.

Hartmann writes:
The Supreme Court ruled on an obscure taxation issue in the Santa Clara County vs. The Union Pacific Railroad case, but the Recorder of the court - a man named J. C. Bancroft Davis, himself formerly the president of a small railroad - wrote into his personal commentary of the case (known as a headnote) that the Chief Justice had said that all the Justices agreed that corporations are persons

Measurt T may be gone but the idea behind it is just getting momentum.
Thom Hartmann also does a nationally syndicated radio show on Air America, weekdays from 9am to noon Pacific which can be heard on kgoe 1480 in Eureka.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Dozens pack Board of Supervisors in Protest over Settlement of Measure T

Today, about 50 people turned out to voice dissent over the Humboldt County Board of Supervisors decision to settle with opponents of Measure T. Measure T was passed by 55 percent of the vote here in Humboldt County California. Measure T seeks to keep corporations outside of the county from influencing local county elections.

David Cobb of Democracy Unlimited of Humboldt County said that 35 people spoke out against the decision by the Board of Supervisors and another 15 people didn't want to speak but were there to support of the measure. Cobb said that only 2 persons (not corporations), (or maybe they were), spoke out in favor of settlement. Measure T says that corporations are not persons and therefore don't have the same rights under the law as citizens do.
What's next? Read More.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Large Explosion Sound in Eureka just after 1am Monday Morning

We have had reports of a large explosion sound in Eureka near Coopers Gulch. No one seems to know what it was. Just after 1am Monday morning 11-17-08 the explosion sound lasted for several seconds. Did any of you hear it? Does anybody know what it was?

Friday, November 14, 2008

Tax-Exempt Organization Complaint (Referral) Form

Want to report a tax exempt organization to the IRS for impropriety? Maybe a church that got involved in a political campaign?
Get Form

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

64 Dams to Be Removed in 2008

Clean water and safety benefits illustrate need for more green infrastructure investments nationwide.

WASHINGTON - November 12 - American Rivers today released its list of 64 dams in 14 states that have been removed or are slated for removal in 2008. Thanks to the removal of these outdated dams, communities in California, Illinois, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Montana, North Carolina, New Hampshire, New York, Ohio, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Vermont, and Wisconsin will enjoy better water quality, improved public safety and flood protection, and more abundant fish and wildlife. A list of these projects is available at:
For more than ten years, American Rivers has led a national effort to restore rivers through removing dams that no longer make sense. This effort has enabled a gradual shift in society's view of dams, and dramatically increased consideration of dam removal as a reasonable and beneficial option for restoring rivers.

Fight the H8 Rally

A fight the hate or H8 rally is set for this Saturday in Eureka. This gathering is to highlight the loss of civil rights to many in California with the passage of Proposition 8 that overturns the California Constitution and says that only members of the opposite sex can marry.
The event starts at 10:30 am November 15th. at the Humboldt County Court House on 5th st.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Disrespect The Homeless And You Might Be Disrespecting Our Troops

This is from the San Francisco Chronicle:

Iraq and Afghanistan War Veterans Join The Homeless
by Anne Sussman
SAN FRANCISCO - Ethan Kreutzer joined the Army at the age of 17 and fought with the 19th Airborne in Jalalabad, Afghanistan. When he retuned home, he had no money, no education and no civilian job experience. He soon became homeless. He slept in an alley off Haight Street, behind two trash cans.

June Moss drove from Kuwait to Iraq as an Army engineer in a truck convoy. When she returned to the United States, she lost her home, and drove her two young children from hotel to hotel across Northern California.
Sean McKeen, a hardy, broad-shouldered 21-year-old with a wide smile, went to Iraq to clear land mines, and to get money for college. When he returned home, he became homeless in less than a week. He found himself sleeping in a cot in a crowded homeless shelter in San Francisco.
They are all part of a growing trend of homelessness among returning war on terrorism veterans.
More than 2,000 military personnel return home to California each month. Most have no specialized job experience, education or an easy familiarity with civilian life. And many have post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), making it difficult to get along with friends and family, and almost impossible to hold down a job.

Good Food, Good Drinks and Great Entertainment in Trinidad

Last night I was informed that one of my friends would be performing in Trinidad. With little notice, I decided to check out the gig at the Beachcomber Cafe. Known mostly for it's Fair Trade Coffee drinks and soup, I was delighted to find out that they had beer and wine as well as other goodies. Last night they were serving fajitas with either tofu or pork. The place isn't real big but is cozy.

Penny Gunn, who runs the Trinidad Artisan Market during the summer, was the solo artist I had come to see. She played a mix of originals and cover tunes to a crowd that sang back on many songs. Everyone had a great time. Who would have thought that so much fun could be had on a Monday night in downtown Trinidad Ca. She was supposed to finish by 9pm but the crowd would have none of it. By about 9:30 things started to wind down and I ended up talking to some people outside about things in the sky. Wow, two of my favorite things, beer and things in the sky and all right down the street from my house.
Alice Vasterling, has owned the Beachcomber Cafe for 5 years now and she and Olivia Seoville served the crowd with a smile. (Alice is the one in the hat).
For a hot bowl of soup, great coffee drinks, organic food and sometimes, entertainment, I recommend ducking into the little cafe next to the town hall in Trinidad.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Support Your Local Veteran

Tuesday, November 11th., is Veterans Day. There are many ways to honor the people that put their lives in harms way in order to ensure freedom here in the good old U.S.A. If you see veterans giving out the little poppies in front of a retail store, thank them, offer to buy them a drink or something to eat. Donate what you can to the local chapter, they usually have a can to put money in.

There are also local events to attend. Most towns will have special Veterans Day events. The Rotary Club of Southwest Eureka is one local example. They will have speakers from the Veterans Health Clinic, Veterans Service Center, Veterans Stand Down and the Humboldt County Veterans Service Office. The celebration also includes performances by the Eureka High School Jazz Ensemble and the Eureka High School Limited Edition.

Zane Middle School eight-grader Brittiney Morettini will read her essay on "Why We Should Honor Our Veterans," Brittiney won this year's local Veterans of Foreign Wars' Patriots Pen contest.

If you can't take the time to add to or attend a local event, take a veteran out to dinner or just do something to show that you appreciate what they did for our country.

Something that people all over the country can do is to support a program called "Socks For Soldiers".

You can find out what they do and get in touch with them by clicking the "Socks For Soldiers" logo to the left of my blog.

Remember, whether you are against war or for war, veterans are doing what is expected of them. They don't set the policy, that comes from Congress or in the case of Iraq, the White House.

Info for Rotary Club of Southwest Eureka event


Info for the week long event at Humboldt State University

call Kim Hall 707-826-6197

Friday, November 7, 2008

Arcata To Hold Protest Rally Against Prop. H8 Saturday

Justin Pabalate, Co-Chair of Humboldt Pride says there will be a rally on the Arcata Plaza Saturday November 8th., at 2pm. 60% of Humboldt County voted against the discriminatory ballot proposition. Show up to support civil rights and the California Constitution.

More info:

ACLU 'Concerned' After Students Told Not To Say Obama

This from, ABC news affiliate in Mississippi.

PEARL, Miss. -- The American Civil Liberties Union of Mississippi said Friday that it had received numerous reports from throughout the state from parents and students regarding alleged violations of students’ free speech following Tuesday’s election.
On Thursday, the Pearl Schools superintendent said that a school bus driver and a coach were disciplined for allegedly telling students not to say President-elect Barack Obama’s name.
Reporters with 16 WAPT News received several calls from upset parents that said a school bus driver told the children on a Pearl school bus that if they said Obama’s name, they would be written up and taken to the principal’s office for disciplinary reasons.
Click for entire racist story
In California, blacks vote to discriminate against gay marriage. In Mississippi, whites still discriminate against blacks. This country may have come a long way recently but we still have more than our share of bigots! Anyone still want to get rid of the ACLU?

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Eliot Spitzer Charges Dropped

Former New York Governor Eliot Spitzer has had criminal charges against him dropped.

Federal prosecutors have said that their investigation found no evidence that he or his office misused public or campaign funds for prostitution.

On May 25th 2003, on 60 minutes, correspondent Steve Kroft reported, after years of greed and questionable practices that duped small investors, 10 of the largest investment firms on Wall Street have agreed to pay the piper: $1.4 billion dollars in fines, plus some tough new rules that are supposed to keep it from happening again.

Much of the credit has to go to Eliot Spitzer, the aggressive, ambitious attorney general of New York state.

After 90 million Americans lost $7 trillion in the stock market collapse, Spitzer deputized himself the Sheriff of Wall street and began a crusade for retribution, restitution and reform.

In February of this year, the Washington Post had this:

Predatory Lenders' Partner in Crime
How the Bush Administration Stopped the States From Stepping In to Help Consumers
Links to this article
By Eliot SpitzerThursday, February 14, 2008; Page A25
Several years ago, state attorneys general and others involved in consumer protection began to notice a marked increase in a range of predatory lending practices by mortgage lenders. Some were misrepresenting the terms of loans, making loans without regard to consumers' ability to repay, making loans with deceptive "teaser" rates that later ballooned astronomically, packing loans with undisclosed charges and fees, or even paying illegal kickbacks. These and other practices, we noticed, were having a devastating effect on home buyers. In addition, the widespread nature of these practices, if left unchecked, threatened our financial markets.

Was Eliot Spitzer set up by the powers that be? Did he know too much? Would he still be Governor if he had looked the other way instead of trying to get the states to do what the FED's wouldn't do? One thing is for sure, Wall Street did need a Sheriff

Lawsuits to challenge California gay marriage ban

Published: Thursday November 6, 2008
California's vote to ban same-sex marriages in a referendum will be contested by activists and city officials who have lodged multiple legal challenges to the ballot, officials said Thursday.
In a stunning result, voters approved a proposal added to ballot papers in Tuesday's presidential election which amended the state constitution to say that only marriages between men and women are recognized in California.
Voters approved the constitutional amendment by a margin of 52.5 to 47.5 percent, according to near-complete results.
The decision came only six months after California's Supreme Court overturned a previous ban on same-sex marriage, paving the way for thousands of gay and lesbian couples to tie the knot in the state.
However opponents of same-sex marriage successfully gathered enough support for an amendment to be added to the November 4 election which sought to override the California Supreme Court decision.
Now activists and city officials in Los Angeles and San Francisco are vowing to return to the California Supreme Court, arguing that the vote -- known as "Proposition 8" -- represented a sweeping revision of the constitution and was more far-reaching than a simple amendment.
"A major purpose of the constitution is to protect minorities from majorities," said Elizabeth Gill, an attorney with the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), one of the rights groups fighting the ban.
"Because changing that principle is a fundamental change to the organizing principles of the constitution itself, only the legislature can initiate such revisions to the constitution."
Challenges have been filed by the ACLU, the National Center for Lesbian Rights and Lambda Legal while San Francisco, Los Angeles and Santa Clara have sued in a joint bid.
"Equal protection of the laws is not merely the cornerstone of the California Constitution, it is what separates constitutional democracy from mob rule tyranny," San Francisco City Attorney Dennis Herrera said in a statement.
Another lawsuit has been filed by Los Angeles lawyer Gloria Allred on behalf of the lesbian couple whose legal fight initially led to May's Supreme Court decision to overturn a previous ban.
The marriage ban sparked angry protests in California on Wednesday, with thousands taking to the streets in Los Angeles to condemn the ban.
Angry crowds thronged the streets in central West Hollywood, the heart of Los Angeles' gay community, chanting slogans and waving signs.
The legal status of thousands of same-sex couples who have wed since June remains unclear although state officials have insisted that the marriages will remain valid.
This story can be found at the

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

High Speed Rail Coming to California

From the San Francisco Chronicle:

(11-05) 00:26 PST SAN FRANCISCO -- California voters appeared to be climbing on board a plan to start construction of the nation's first high-speed rail system.

With better than 40 percent of ballots counted, Proposition 1A was holding a narrow but steady lead.
The bond measure would approve the sale of nearly $10 billion in bonds as a down payment on an 800-mile high-speed rail network that would send electric trains zipping between Northern and Southern California at up to 220 mph.
Supporters, including transportation, environmental and business groups and the heavy-construction industry, said high-speed rail would offer a fast, greener and less-costly way to travel up and down the state.
Opponents - mainly taxpayers groups and the libertarian Reason Foundation - criticized the high-speed rail proposal as either poorly planned or a good idea that the state can't afford in trying economic times.

Local Voter Confidince Committee Seeks Volunteers For Hand Count

The Voter Confidence Committee is looking for volunteers to help with a partial hand count of the Humboldt County election results. To sign up, go to VCC

Marijuana Policy Project says Many Victories on Election Night

2008 Ballot Initiatives
On November 4, 2008, MPP and our allies across the country passed nine out of 10 marijuana-related ballot initiatives ... and also defeated a bad initiative.

Bigotry Wins in California

Bigotry in California is alive and well. The fear mongering and lies spread by the Yes on 8 or H8TE campaign seem to have won out over the California Constitution.

With 96 percent of the vote in and according to the private machines that count our votes as of 10:55 am Wednesday November 5th., Prop. H8TE looks like this:

08 - Eliminates Right of Same-Sex Couples to Marry YES: 5,220,694 52.2% NO: 4,792,873 47.8%

Election Night Results - CA Secretary of State

99.5% ( 25,318 of 25,423 ) precincts partiallyor fully reporting as of Nov. 5, 2008, at 2:48 p.m. State Ballot Measures
1A - Safe, Reliable High-Speed Train Bond Act
YES: 5,053,442 52.2%
NO: 4,641,088 47.8%
02 - Standards for Confining Farm Animals
YES: 6,234,998 63.2%
NO: 3,639,387 36.8%
03 - Children's Hospital Bond Act. Grant Program.
YES: 5,291,434 54.8%
NO: 4,364,891 45.2%
04 - Parent Notif. Before Terminating Minor's Pregnancy
YES: 4,735,641 47.9%
NO: 5,138,780 52.1%
05 - Nonviolent Drug Offense. Sentencing, Parole, Rehab
YES: 3,894,165 40.1%
NO: 5,816,298 59.9%
06 - Police, Law Enforcement Funding. Criminal Laws.
YES: 2,911,662 30.7%
NO: 6,555,129 69.3%
07 - Renewable Energy Generation
YES: 3,402,940 35.1%
NO: 6,281,232 64.9%
08 - Eliminates Right of Same-Sex Couples to Marry
YES: 5,359,110 52.5%
NO: 4,867,034 47.5%
09 - Criminal Justice System. Victims' Rights. Parole.
YES: 5,075,131 53.5%
NO: 4,422,258 46.5%
10 - Altern. Fuel Vehicles and Renewable Energy Bonds
YES: 3,870,860 40.2%
NO: 5,739,451 59.8%
11 - Redistricting
YES: 4,645,027 50.6%
NO: 4,547,706 49.4%
12 - Veterans' Bond
YES: 5,971,024 63.5%
NO: 3,438,774 36.5%

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

EXCLUSIVE: Obama Database Details Startling, Widespread Touch-Screen Probs in NV

Presidential Race Missing on Ballots; Machines Go Down; Votes Not Recorded; Printers Jam
Attorneys Decline to Take Action to Remove Machines From Service, Ensure Paper Ballots for Voters... See this and many more voting stories at the brad blog.

US Chamber of Commerce Backing Anti-Union Senators

Big business lobbies against Employee Free Choice Act that would make it easier to organize a union
The US Chamber of Commerce is pouring more than 30 million dollars into the senatorial race to elect republicans in key states. The objective is to support "pro-business" candidates and avoid confronting an air-tight democratic majority that would be likely to pass the Employee Free Choice Act, a bill that was filibustered in the senate in 2007. To discuss the legislation and the campaign surrounding it, The Real News Network spoke to Stewart Acuff, Director of Organizing for the AFL-CIO and Bruce Raynor, General President of UNITE HERE:
Click for U-Tube Video
Source: The Real News Network Reports:Election monitors call for extension of VA voting hours

An election monitoring group is asking officials in Virginia to address reports of massive voting machine failures and voters being turned away from polls, and it may go to court if no action is taken. Election Protection, a nonprofit group aimed at cataloging and correcting problems at the polls, says it has received more than 27,000 calls from voters since 5 a.m. Tuesday. Most problems have been reported in Pennsylvania, Virginia, New Jersey and Florida, representatives of the group said. Voters experiencing problems can report them by dialing 866-OUR-VOTE or 866-MY-VOTE1."We don’t want to be chicken little here,” said Jonah Goldman, who directs the Lawyers' Committee for Civil Rights Campaign for Fair Elections. "What we’re trying to do is report what we’re seeing out in the field. Unfortunately this is what we expected.”During a press conference Tuesday morning, group representatives said they were asking election officials in Virginia to extend voting by two hours. The group also wants election to ensure that paper ballots are available in precincts where electronic voting machines break down. If elections officials fail to act, the group could file a lawsuit in federal court, but it hopes to avoid that option.