Monday, January 30, 2012

ACTA: The International Treaty You've Never Heard of That Could Affect Internet Freedom

ACTA: The International Treaty You've Never Heard of That Could Affect Internet Freedom

US among countries that have already signed ACTA

While there was massive attention last week to online anti-piracy bills -- SOPA in the House and the PIPA in the Senate -- ACTA, the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement, has received scant media attention yet poses a tremendous threat to online freedom.
RT reports on how the ACTA treaty will work:
Under this new treaty, Internet Service Providers will police all data passing through them, making them legally responsible for what their users do online. And should you do something considered "breach of copyright" like, for instance, getting a tattoo of a brand logo, taking a photo and posting it somewhere, you may be disconnected from the Internet, fined or even jailed.
This, of course, threatens the entire founding idea of the Internet – the free sharing of information. But ACTA doesn't stop there. It goes beyond the Internet, bearing down on generic drugs and food patents. If passed, ACTA will enforce a global standard for seed patenting, which would wipe out independent, local farmers and make the world completely dependent on the patent owners (read "big corporations") for supplies.
Read More Here

Friday, January 27, 2012

The Perils Being Homeless In Humboldt County

Peoples' Action for Rights and Community <>
Today is Thursday, Jan. 26, 2012, and this report is coming from Eureka, CA in Humboldt County.

Three people have died from exposure this season in Humboldt County.  It is disgraceful that people would be hunted for sleeping, stolen from by the police, ticketed or arrested for having no place to go, and left to hide, freeze and die.  But, be not fooled.  There has been, for years, a deliberate government campaign for people with no shelter:  disappear, be imprisoned, or die. 

A female and male couple who I've known for two years, live outside on the cold streets of Eureka. Currently, the woman is in the hospital with serious pneumonia on top of too much prescribed Seroquel- she has been quite depressed and is in serious condition at St.Joe's.

The couple has been sleeping in a tent at the Del Norte Pier.  Yesterday (January 25, 2012), the man had a friend call for an ambulance when his partner fell very ill and incoherent.  First, three Eureka cops showed up, including Eureka Police Sgt. Michael Quigley (notoriously abusive) and two other officers; then the fire department; then the ambulance- IN THAT ORDER.
The woman was put on a stretcher and taken to the emergency room about 10:30am. 
Her partner followed in a city bus.  He stayed with her at the hospital until late night, and returned about 12:30am to the tent and his dog, Charlie (black lab and chow mix, about 11 years old). Charlie had been tied up to a tree by the tent, so she had access in and out of the tent.  When the man returned late from the hospital, he found that their tent had been cut all the way to the ground, their tarps and all of their other belongings were outside the tent door, everything spread all over the place, backpacks rummaged through, and the two shopping carts with which they had collected recyclables were still there with the recyclables in them. 
Right in front of the shopping carts was Charlie, dead, shot twice. 
In anguish, the man spent the night there. He grieved and had to figure out what to do with Charlie's body.  He tried to rest in a sleeping bag that was now soaked and covered with mud on the ground.

According to one report, friends, who also had a tent nearby, were visited by the Eureka Police after the ambulance and partner of the woman with the medical emergency left the area.  The police cut these peoples' tent to the ground.

This cruelty is despicable.  Please do what you can for each other.  It's cold and wet.  And the police (and the threat of the police) is always there.


Sunday, January 22, 2012

Japan Incinerating Radioactive Waste

Russ Baker writing at business Insider dot com does a good job of catching us up on what has happened, is happening and what needs to happen in regards to the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear triple melt down last year in Japan. Radiation has spewed world wide by now and it continues to accumulate in the food chain. This article gives a good breakdown on the different types of radiation and how they effect the human body and ecosystems. Things aren't getting any better either as they are now burning radioactive trash in Japan. Here is an excerpt from the article written 3 days ago :
Instead of collecting, isolating, and guarding the millions of tons of radioactive rubble that resulted from the chain reaction of the 9.0 earthquake, the subsequent 45- to 50-foot wall of water that swamped the plant and disabled the cooling systems for the reactors, and the ensuing meltdowns, Japanese Environment Minister Goshi Hosono says that the entire country must share Fukushima’s plight by accepting debris from the disaster.
Read more: and watch the video below and if all you see is an empty box click this you tube link:

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Local Musician Passes

He was one of my first hires as a manager at the radio station. Mark Vigil worked on 1480 am mixing the Imus In The Morning show.

One morning he collapsed from a heart attack. St. Joe's patched him up but it took some time and we eventually changed the morning show to one that did not require board op. I stayed in touch with Mark over the years as he got back on his feet and started writing music again. Last year under the name MVP for Mark Vigil Project, he released his latest C.D. called  "I believe In You" which was the first single from the album. That song got some airplay nation wide and here in Eureka at Power 96.3. It was a total pop love song that Mark said he wrote about one of the nurses that helped him after his heart attack. That song was followed up with the song "You Better Know Why", which because it had a steel guitar in it, Mark wanted to release as a country tune. He did and it rose just around #40 on the charts. It is a great song and could cross over to to the Power format, I have played it there but country is where the song was getting the airplay that Mark said was bringing in royalty checks. 

Mark had an interesting life playing and writing music.  He worked for the Oakland Raiders and knew Al Davis.  He even claims to have invented the duck call toy sold at Disney Ducks Hockey games.  He claimed that members of his family had somehow stolen the patent and were receiving all of the royalties.  When I last talked to him he told me he had saved enough money to hire a good lawyer to get to the bottom of all of that.

I last saw Mark at the station where he stopped by to show off his two L.A. Music awards for the two hit songs he had written. I took the picture above that day on November 15th. and expected I would see him again in his new life as a country music star. That was not to happen. Mark died on New Years Day of natural causes. He left behind a beautyful daughter named Chelsea and a lot of stunned friends.  Mark will be missed by many.
The link below is video of Mark Vigil on the red carpet going into last years L.A. Music Awards.

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Eyes, Orbs Or Reflections?

I was in a car with morning radio personality Rollin Trehearne at the wheel going between Williams Ca. and Clear Lake on Highway 20. I took some photos of the landscape and the sky at around 4 pm. The eyes, orbs, reflections or what ever only ended up on 4 pictures all taken within about 10 minutes of each other. Was it a reflection of something off the inside of the glass of the skylight and the windows? One picture is shot from the front window, two from the side and one through the sun roof. All were from my droid phone.
Weird stuff.

Monday, January 16, 2012

Batten Down The Hatches!

A series of big storms is going to make up for a lack of rain this year. So far January has had almost no precipitation to offer most of Northern California. The Mt Shasta ski resort has had no skiers. I flew from Sacramento to Salt Lake City last week and there was virtually no snow on the ground in the Sierra Mountains around Lake Tahoe. We flew directly over the lake heading east to Utah seeing no snow until we reached Utah.

We are about to make up for that though. Tonight as the first wave comes in, there will be cold temperatures and windy conditions. Snow levels are expected to be just under 2,000 feet. Medford Oregon is expecting an inch of snow tomorrow. In the mountains of Washington and Oregon they expect to measure a foot per day of snow as the storm moves into Tuesday night and Wednesday. Temperatures will rise from the 30's to the mid 40's on Wednesday which is when the most rain is expected to begin.

Update: It is just before 8:00 pm and it's  31.5 degrees at 375 feet elevation near Trinidad Ca.

Tonight and into early tomorrow we will have a chance of snow in strange places. Drive carefully and batten down the hatches if you have hatches. If you live in King Salmon or other low lying coastal areas be advised, A coastal flood watch has been issued by the National Weather Service.







In Remembrance Of The Good Doctor

Today is the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. celebrated holiday. A local celebration was held on Sunday at the Eureka Courthouse where an Occupy Wall St. occupation has been going on for months now. I was out of town until last night and was unable to attend but I did want to remember the man that did more for civil rights than any other in my life time. The Humboldt Herald has a speech from MLK made the day before he was assonated in 1968.

I wanted to share this with everyone so that we never forget where we came from and where we should be going. As Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. said "we have some difficulties ahead" before we get to the promised land. Thanks to Humboldt Herald for sharing this and thanks to Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. for enlightening us all.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Move to End Corporate Personhood January 20th., Occupy The Courts

Well what do you know, I finally got my video thingie working again.

Rock N' Roll Burlyman's Wedding Video

Blogger won't let me post the video so here is the link.

Held in November on the Eureka Waterfront, Rock n' Roll Burlyman Dana Hall and his lovely bride celebrate with friends, family and dog.

Reckless Driver Turns Around On US 101 And Dies In Accident

The Times-Standard is reporting that CHP spokesman Paul Dahlen said there were reports of a reckless driver weaving in and out of the lanes on northbound US 101. As officers searched for the female driver, she had turned her car around on the northbound land and started driving southbound.  It is unclear how or when she turned her car around, Dahlen said.

The accident occured at about 7:21 am this morning and northbound lanes were closed until about 9:25 am.

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Something Kinetic Going On At 5th & F Street Eureka

The former Plaza Design store at 5th and F in Eureka has some interesting things going on inside tonight.  People were scurrying around and getting ready for Arts Alive! this Saturday January the
7th. from 6 to 9 pm and an after hours party to follow.

 What is interesting is this will be a second Kinetic Sculpture Museum.  The one in Ferndale is still there and will stay while this, the new downtown Eureka site will be room for more sculptures . The other one is too small and has had to turn racing machines/mobile art work away.  From all that I could see Arts Alive! will be their grand opening.

At the Humboldt Sentinel which already reported on this last month, the curator said on Christmas Day:

Randall Frost, former curator Ferndale Kinetic Museum says:
Great news, though a little clarification may be in order. Saying that “the Kinetic Sculpture Race Museum has been re-established in Humboldt County” may give one the impression that it had been lost at some point. On the contrary, the museum has been and is still in it’s original Ferndale home. Yes, “race” has been dropped from the name, the interior has been updated and the number of machines has decreased by about 25%, but it’s still the home of Kinetic Madness that it always was.
In the end this is all good news. The Ferndale Museum has no extra storage facility, so many wonderful sculptures have been turned away over the years. Now, with another museum in Humboldt County people will have even more opportunity to see all the amazing works associated with this incredible event, not to mention the art work of the “Glorious Founder”, Hobart Brown.
R.J. Frost
Former Curator, Ferndale Kinetic Sculpture Museum

Monday, January 2, 2012

New Years Eve In Old Town Sacramento

I had brunch in Sacramento on New Years Eve.  I was on my way back to Humboldt from So.Cal. with a friend and since we had to overnight there, we thought we would spend an hour or so checking out the place.  I took about 30 pictures but here are just a few.

You really have to see it for yourself.  It is like stepping back in time. The La Quinta Inn just  mile up the freeway is an affordable stay.  Two fireworks shows and other festivities were planned for that night in the old town waterfront.

Sunday, January 1, 2012

Obama Signed NDAA, Ron Paul Now Only Real Chance To Get Back Civil Liberties

I admit that I voted for Ron Paul many years ago when we were both Libertarians.  I didn't think I would ever seriously consider voting for him again.  I have to admit that some of the stuff Ron Paul says and believes is a bit hard to imagine in practicality. Then yesterday:

Huffington Post, 12-31-11
WASHINGTON -- Indefinite military detention of Americans became the law of the land Saturday, as President Barack Obama signed a defense bill that codified that authority, even as he said he would not use it.

I am again seriously considering a vote for Ron Paul.  Not because I think that he would be the best person to govern this country, not because he would strengthen the social safety net and not because he is saying things that make me warm and fuzzy.  Simply because he is about the only person that could be president next year that would do their best to roll back the destruction of our constitution.  Bush really gave this anti constitution movement the biggest push with his illegal war and the Patriot Act.  Obama has codified or put his seal of approval on it. 

I am getting tired of hearing that we are losing our civil rights to protest, to sleep, to vote, to privacy, to drive without checkpoints, to know our accusers, to a trial by a jury of our peers, to know what the government does around the world in our name, to grow and use medical marijuana, and the list goes on. How are we to be a free country and the greatest country on the planet if we have no real rights?

I am not a Republican so I won't be voting for Ron Paul in the primary but if he wins the primary, he may get my vote in the next general election. I fear some of what he says he would do, but at least he doesn't want the power to detain me with no charges, lawyer, trial or outside contact for an indefinite amount of time. He doesn't want to send our kids to a Wall St. or oil driven war. With Ron Paul you know what you get. With the rest, you don't even know how long there will still be elections in this country. Shame on us for letting it get to this.

To all of my progressive and liberal friends, look around you at the police state that is going on now. The other republicans will only make things worse. We don't currently have a good independent alternative except for possibly Gary Johnson. Johnson has some of his own problems like privatizing half of the prisons while Gov. of New Mexico. He is a libertarian but was a republican. Paul was a Libertarian and is now a republican. I would like to vote for an anti war,  pro worker, pro civil rights , anti drug war progressive.  None are running.

 Obama has pretty much gone along with the rest of these anti middle class and poor people hating republicans. He has backed down to them every single time. He seems to have no backbone. Maybe he would appoint a decent Supreme Court Justice and maybe he would not. One can't tell by his track record.

 Obama was the Wall St. darling taking more money from them than anyone else in the last presidential election. Wall St. liked him for  reasons that most of us didn't know at the time.
Since Obama has been president the stock market is back, big businesses have seen the highest quarterly profits in world history. More illegal aliens have been deported. More terrorist enemies of the US have been hunted down and "taken out" in the name of our safety.  The rich are richer than they have ever been. Sure he saved some jobs when he saved the US auto industry but that also helped big business. Other than ending DADT in the military and a weak health care bill, he has done little for the 99 %.  Most of us are worse off and now we can't even set things right in the court system in front of our peers. I know some of you are going to say, but Tom, the courts are full and we still have Habeas Corpus and such going on right now down at the court house. Sure, it goes on for now. It doesn't have to though. It has just been given a way out with Obama's signature on the National Defense Authorization Act.

I don't like several things about Ron Paul like his racist and homophobic news letters decades ago and the privatization of just about everything but if not Ron Paul, then who?  Gary Johnson? Remember that republicans were the ones that had the votes to pass the NDAA and send it to Obama.  I have a hard time supporting any of them.  Paul was one republican that didn't vote for it though. I don't know if I would rather see Paul as president or support the idea that at least during the debates with Obama we can all discuss more than abortion, gays, guns and god. The country might learn something.  Obama might learn something. 

 For me, the signing of the NDAA is about the last straw.

Fox News-Years Day

The news is that I just saw this one in my driveway at 3:30 pm New Years Day! They usually only come out at night unless they are sick, rabid or they feel real comfortable about the surroundings.

I would say this fox has been hanging around while most of us that live here were away on holiday. He pretty much figured out that he owned the place for a week and a half.

I'm pretty sure this is a Red Fox.  The pictures are a little grainy because he was more than 100 feet away when I took them.

US Senator Joe Liberman, WTC 7 Did Not Occur