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Comment Archives: stories: Columns & Blogs: Letters to the Editor

Re: “Letters to the Editor: August 20, 2014

Sonoma County Community and Local Law Enforcement Task Force (continued)

The Task force is charged with:
1. Reviewing options for a model for an independent citizen review body.
2. Reviewing and recommending options for community policing to be considered with the Fiscal Year 2014-2015 budget process.
3. Reviewing and recommending whether the Office of Coroner should be separately elected from the Office of Sheriff.
4. Bringing to the Board of Supervisors any additional feedback from the community on these issues that merits County attention by the end of 2014 and discuss staff generated efforts on these issues. These duties are described more completely in the Community and Local Law Enforcement Charter, approved by the Board of Supervisors December 10, 2013.

Posted by Sonoma County Citizen on 08/23/2014 at 3:50 PM

Re: “Letters to the Editor: August 20, 2014

Re: Policing the Police

There's no need for another petition.

The Sonoma Community and Local Law Enforcement Task Force was created following the tragic shooting death of Andy Lopez by a Sonoma County deputy sheriff to address four important issues necessary for community healing through the convening of 21 representative members of the community and ultimately making recommendations to the Board of Supervisors. The Task Force has been created for a one-year period that will conclude December 31, 2014.

Posted by Sonoma County Citizen on 08/23/2014 at 3:41 PM

Re: “Letters to the Editor: August 13, 2014

Hideous. Sadistic. Vicious. Murderous. That is how Noam Chomsky describes Israel’s 29-day offensive in Gaza that killed nearly 1,900 people and left almost 10,000 people injured. Chomsky has written extensively about the Israel/Palestine conflict for decades. It’s another one of the periodic Israeli exercises in what they delicately call "mowing the lawn". That means shooting fish in the pond, to make sure that the animals stay quiet in the cage that you’ve constructed for them, after which you go to a period of what’s called "ceasefire".

"In the Occupied Territories, what Israel is doing is much worse than apartheid," Chomsky says. "To call it apartheid is a gift to Israel, at least if by 'apartheid' you mean South African-style apartheid. What’s happening in the Occupied Territories is much worse. There’s a crucial difference. The South African Nationalists needed the black population. That was their workforce. … The Israeli relationship to the Palestinians in the Occupied Territories is totally different. They just don’t want them. They want them out, or at least in prison."

"An eye for an eye" has always been the motto of those who live under the Mosaic Law--injury for injury, injustice for injustice, death for death. There was love and mercy and forgiveness even under the Mosaic Law, but those who practice it today have focused on justice and judgment rather than mercy and forgiveness, and their justice has become injustice and their judgment has become the slaughter of the innocent and the butchery of the helpless.

Ted Rudow III, MA
Palo Alto, CA

1 like, 1 dislike
Posted by Ted Rudow III on 08/13/2014 at 11:39 AM

Re: “Letters to the Editor: August 5, 2014

What if situation in Gaza were reversed?

Gaza is controlled completely, like the West Bank, because it is totally surrounded by Israel. Israel could not be imposing the kind of chokehold it has on Gaza if it were not surrounding; if its military were not surrounding Gaza, and not just on the territory, but also on the air, on the sea. No one there can make a move without coming into contact with the Israeli IDF; you know, outside this imprisoned area where Gazans live.

What if the situation were reversed, and the Jewish population were locked into, were told, "Here, you have less than 2 percent of Palestine, so now behave. No more resistance. And let us deal with the rest"? Is there any Jew who would have said this is a reasonable proposition, that we cease our resistance, we cease our effort to establish a Jewish state, at least on one-half of Palestine, which is authorised by the U.N.?

"Hamas is no more a 'terror organisation' ... than the Zionist movement was during its struggle for a Jewish homeland. In the late 1930s and 1940s, parties within the Zionist movement resorted to terrorist activities for strategic reasons." “The fact is that Israel had, pre-state -- in its pre-state stage, several terrorist groups that did exactly what Hamas does today." Henry Siegman

Ted Rudow III, MA
Palo Alto, CA, USA

1 like, 1 dislike
Posted by Ted Rudow III on 08/07/2014 at 5:30 PM

Re: “Letters to the Editor: July 30, 2014

Gaza is controlled completely, like the West Bank, because it is totally surrounded by Israel. Israel could not be imposing the kind of chokehold it has on Gaza if it were not surrounding, if its military were not surrounding Gaza, and not just on the territory, but also on the air, on the sea. No one there can make a move without coming into contact with the Israeli IDF, you know, outside this imprisoned area where Gazans live.
What if the situation were reversed, and the Jewish population were locked into, were told, "Here, you have less than 2 percent of Palestine, so now behave. No more resistance. And let us deal with the rest"? Is there any Jew who would have said this is a reasonable proposition, that we cease our resistance, we cease our effort to establish a Jewish state, at least on one-half of Palestine, which is authorized by the U.N.?
"Hamas is no more a 'terror organisation' ... than the Zionist movement was during its struggle for a Jewish homeland. In the late 1930s and 1940s, parties within the Zionist movement resorted to terrorist activities for strategic reasons." The fact is that Israel had, pre-state—in its pre-state stage, several terrorist groups that did exactly what Hamas does today."
Henry Siegman

ISA.1:17 Learn to do well; seek judgment, relieve the oppressed, judge the fatherless, plead for the widow.
Ted Rudow III, MA

1 like, 1 dislike
Posted by Ted Rudow III on 08/01/2014 at 6:50 PM

Re: “Letters to the Editor: July 30, 2014

Every Nation Has a Right and Duty to Protect Its Citizens

So May Taylor thinks citizens of the world's only Jewish State should passively wait for the Palestinian Arabs to kill them via rocket attacks and kidnappings? I don't.

On June 12, three Israeli teenagers were kidnapped by Hamas members. The Israeli government began an intensive search. That same day, Hamas and other Palestinian terrorist groups renewed rocket attacks, followed by attempted infiltration through tunnels.

Hamas has been committing a double war crime – intentionally targeting civilian centers in Israel and intentionally placing its weapons in civilian neighborhoods in Gaza.

On June 15, Israel struck terrorist targets in Gaza. On June 30, in the West Bank town of Hebron – where the first Hebrews, Abraham and Sarah, are buried – the murdered bodies of Eyal Yifrah, Gilad Shaar and Naftali Fraenkel were found.

Norman Solomon (Bohemian “Rhapsodies & Rants 7/23-29,14) criticizes the Israeli Government for searching for the perpetrators and destroying rocket launchers. Mae Taylor piles on the criticism. In a “morally skewed universe,” Solomon calls terrorists “party activists” and implies that Israel has the approval of The New York Times and the U.S. Government to “Kill more.”

Actually, the Palestinian unity government still receives U.S. funding. The “moderate” Palestinian Authority -- Hamas’s partner in a unity government -- celebrated the kidnappings in its official publication (

"Moderate" Fatah promises "to turn Tel Aviv into a ball of fire" (

Hamas TV broadcast a sermon, "it is Muslim destiny to exterminate the Jews" (

Ms. Taylor complains about schools in Gaza being hit by Israel. The third UN school in Gaza was found to be storing rockets (

Jewish “settlements” in Gaza go back to at least 145 B.C.E. There has been an almost continual Jewish presence until 2005, when Israel gave up all of Gaza. Since then, Arab terrorists have launched more than 10,000 rockets (including the Iranian Fajr-5) and nearly 5000 mortars into Israel from Gaza, killing 65 Israelis, wounding almost 5000 and traumatizing thousands.

Tons of humanitarian goods are transferred from Israel to Gaza, despite these ongoing attacks. Israel’s responses are proceeded by leaflets, phone calls and other means to warn civilians to evacuate targeted buildings. A recent analysis found 82% of reported Gaza “civilian” fatalities were male; 45% age 18-28. ( Civilians? Hmm?

Jews have lived in the land of Israel continually in an independent state or under the rule of others since the return from Egypt. “Zionism” is the 2000 year old Jewish aspiration of a re-established independent Jewish state in their ancient homeland.

There was no sizable Arab presence in the land until the Muslim invasions, about 1800 years after the return of the Jews.

Despite these stronger Jewish claims to the land, Jews have been willing to “share” the territory with the Arabs. But the Arab and Muslim response has been disproportionate in words and violence.

In 2012, Hamas representative Fathi Hamad said, "For the Palestinian people death became an industry…. We desire death as you desire life."

By protecting it’s citizens – the first responsibility of any government – Israel chooses life.

What is so controversial about that?

Ben Winkler
Santa Rosa

15 likes, 5 dislikes
Posted by Ben on 07/30/2014 at 10:13 AM

Re: “Letters to the Editor: July 23, 2014

The Solomon Screed
Norman, it's even worse than you thought. Rep. Huffman, who defeated you soundly in the Democratic primary, was actually a co-sponsor of the resolution supporting Israel, and, head held high, appeared recently at a rally in support of Israel's actions at Temple Emanuel in San Francisco.
Why do liberals like Rep. Huffman, and even the Progressive Caucus, who joined in the Congressional "seal of approval", and the sainted New York Times, never a great friend of the Zionist state or its leaders, see things so differently from you?
Could it be that they realize that the regrettable death of civilians in Gaza is the fault of the terrorist group Hamas, which the Gazans mistakenly elected to lead them, and whose recipe for victory is to "desire death more than you value life", as a member was once quoted as saying. Apparently they believe that firing missiles from apartment complexes and storing weapons in mosques and schools is the best way of helping their charges achieve immortality. It is not the Israelis, or the U.S., that places little value on human life, but Hamas, which for years has timed its rocket attacks on Sderot to coincide with the beginning and end of the school day, hoping to kill Israeli children on their way to and from school. The U.S. supplies Israel with weapons to defend themselves against this murderous group, and, to all accounts they are doing it with as much respect for the lives of civilians at the target sites as they can. Using building supplies that Israel allowed through its blockade for humanitarian purposes, Hamas has built a huge network of deep tunnels underneath Gaza for storing weapons and hiding Hamas leaders from Israeli bombs. No civilians are allowed in these tunnels. Hamas wants the Gaza population to remain in place as collateral damage for Israeli attacks, to be waved in front of the sensationalistic international press and for the convenience of propagandists like you.
You had your moment in the spotlight. Now have the grace to retire into obscurity, neither with a bang nor a whimper.
Jeffrey Sheff
Santa Rosa

15 likes, 0 dislikes
Posted by Jeffrey Sheff on 07/25/2014 at 4:36 PM

Re: “Letters to the Editor: July 2, 2014

Lake Berryessa is not a National Monument!

Proponents of the Berryessa Snow Mountain National Conservation Area, knowing that Congressman Thompson’s highly unpopular bill will never pass Congress, have begun an anti-democratic strategy to bypass Congress and have the President declare Lake Berryessa a National Monument under the Antiquities Act - simply by a stroke of his pen!

Lake Berryessa does not meet the basic standards of an NCA. And it especially doesn’t meet any criteria to become a National Monument.

The main problem affecting Lake Berryessa in all this chaos is that it was included in the original silly Berryessa Snow Mountain NCA in the first place. Lake Berryessa is like the tail of a dog that can't seem to wag the rest of the dog's body. The lake is not even connected on the map to the rest of the proposed NCA/National Monument which stretches far into Northern California. Just look at the map yourself!

At a minimum, Lake Berryessa should be removed from the boundaries of any proposed National Monument or NCA and the NCA should be renamed the Mendocino Snow Mountain NCA.

The Antiquities Act states that National Monuments should contain “historic landmarks, historic and prehistoric structures, and other objects of historic or scientific interest” and be “the smallest area compatible with the proper care and management of the objects to be protected.” Lake Berryessa meets neither criteria and clearly falls into the “Rural Developed Setting” under the government’s own Water and Land Recreation Opportunity Spectrum Users' Handbook (WALROS) quoted below. This designation should immediately exclude it from National Monument or NCA consideration. And Lake Berryessa and the surrounding areas are already highly protected.

"A rural developed area is beyond a metropolitan area and the suburban ring of development. Rural developed areas may serve as "bedroom" communities for urban areas and may contain working farms, ranches, and towns. In this setting, primary road networks are common. Although development will be prevalent and common, the setting has a pastoral sense because of an interspersing of forests, water resources, hills, valleys, canyons, wetlands, open spaces, and agricultural lands. Naturally appearing shoreline edges are common, although various water controls or other structures are also common. Recreation management is prevalent and common but not as extensive as in an urban setting.”

Lake Berryessa is a man-made lake with no special historical or environmental significance, created by a minor dam and surrounded by bedroom communities and private land. It has historically been a major public recreation destination. Although I have been a long-standing critic of the Bureau of Reclamation in the past, its recent actions show that Reclamation is doing an excellent job in managing the future development process for the revitalization of the lake. Reclamation’s last Public Forum presentation in Winters of the status and results of the ongoing planning process for the lake’s redevelopment were extremely thorough and professional. It included drafts of detailed Market Assessment and Financial Analysis, Conceptual Site Plans, and Infrastructure Design Report. These are all available for review at their web site:

How would a National Monument designation affect residents, property owners, and ranchers in the boundaries? How would the designation affect the NBRID, the Berryessa Highlands, and the potential Community Services District being planned for that region?

A National Monument is traditionally managed by the National Park Service, but the Bureau of Land Management has often been designated as the manager in the legislation. A National Monument designation would force out the Bureau of Reclamation - as would Thompson’s other bill in Congress. His management transfer bill, HR4166, does not enjoy popular support among the people affected and has never had any significant public input. What would be the cost of the transition and who would pay for it? How long would it delay the present process? What specifically can the BLM do better an faster than the BOR?

What happens to current Reclamation employees, some long-term, who care as much about the lake as do local residents? Their lives would be seriously affected, their jobs could be eliminated, their families could be uprooted for no good reason.

A National Monument designation could severely restrict public access to and future development at the lake - as could an NCA designation. The usual radical exclusionist suspects have already been floating the idea that some of the resorts should not be reopened at all, reopened with limited amenities, or reopened for day use only.

Posted by Pkilkus on 07/05/2014 at 1:09 PM

Re: “Letters to the Editor: May 21, 2014

Big Man: I wish to take this opportunity to thank you for your outstanding letter which you took time out of your life to bravely author and submit for publication. We are certainly on the same page when it comes to the disgusting shenanigans of this "man," whom I have appropriately dubbed Sonoma County's perennial political embarrassment. That the board of supervisors - chaired by David Rabbitt - did not follow through with a formal vote of censure is a real slap in the face to those of us who take pride in our county, our community and the quality of our governmental leadership. We were led to believe that at the NEXT regularly scheduled Tuesday meeting of the board of supervisors following the meeting where Supervisor Carrillo was excoriated publicly for his shameful acts and overall conduct unbecoming, that an item would be placed on the agenda calling for both his censure and resignation; and, yet, that never came to pass.

At the start of the heavily attended meeting where speaker after speaker took to the mic to voice their absolute displeasure for Supervisor Carrillo's nefarious conduct and shameful acts, Chairman Rabbitt made it clear that that board has no legal power to remove Supervisor Carrillo from his position of Fifth District Supervisor, but that certainly does NOT mean that the formal - albeit symbolic - vote could not have been held, for I believe that it would have carried great weight with the public - and would have done MUCH to help restore at least a crumb of the incredible amount respect that has been lost for the governing body known as the Sonoma County Board of Supervisors.

It's a damn shame that those in power are so incredibly disconnected with the constituents who put them in power that they just don't see it that way.

3 likes, 0 dislikes
Posted by Thomas Bonfigli on 05/21/2014 at 2:27 PM

Re: “Letters to the Editor: May 14, 2014

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Re: “Letters to the Editor: May 14, 2014

Obama visits Bay Area

Wal-Mart visit a misstep

Wal-Mart is one of only a few major retailers that have refused to sign on to
new safety standards that came out after a garment factory collapsed last year
in Bangladesh, killing 1,129 people.

Despite a spotty record on labor issues, President Barack Obama's visit
Friday to the Wal-Mart in Mountain View was the first by a sitting president to
a Wal-Mart store -- the world's largest retailer. It raised the ire of some
labor advocates who have long criticized the retailer for low wages and
importing goods from China rather than buying from U.S. manufacturers.

They protested alongside environmentalists demanding a halt to the Keystone
XL pipeline on a street outside the Fairmont Hotel in San Francisco on

Ted Rudow III

Palo Alto

1 like, 1 dislike
Posted by Ted Rudow III on 05/16/2014 at 12:14 PM

Re: “Letters to the Editor: May 7, 2014

Nice letter, Doc. I, too believe in recovery, restoration and forgiveness for Efren Carrillo. It's between him and Jane Doe from this point forwards. One day at a time, as he said the other day to the PD.

0 likes, 3 dislikes
Posted by Keith Rhinehart on 05/10/2014 at 1:40 PM

Re: “Letters to the Editor: May 7, 2014

How about you blame Carrillo for his own actions and not the victim, not the pressdemocrat, not the constituents, nor substance abuse. Enablers are what you are.
The guy thinks tresspassing on a strangers house looking for sex shoud be treated as some kid stealing candy. Where did you get your doctorate? A jack in the box ?

3 likes, 1 dislike
Posted by Eddie Alvarez on 05/09/2014 at 6:20 PM

Re: “Letters to the Editor: May 7, 2014

Wow! Such incessant rambling by what appear to be Carrillo's very own professional apologists.

First of all, I will remind you that alcohol is one of the most potent and effect removers of inhibitions, so Fed Up's comment, "Anyone who has experienced alcoholism first hand...can understand that what happened that night was not something a sober Efren Carrillo would do" falls completely flat on its very face.

"...and I commend him for baring his soul and not trying to cover anything up..." Indeed, on the witness stand, he did bare his soul, that therein lies the problem, for his disturbing admissions made therefrom have automatically propelled this entire pathetic situation into a whole new realm of seriousness.

Tori Coto: Your comments about the "father holding his son" which you so misguidedly made above are out of line. I met that man and his son, and let me tell you something: He is more of a man than Efren Carrillo will ever be. I and many others applauded and commended him for bringing his son to see how NOT to grow up and that the conduct unbecoming which has been displayed by our "supervisor" is NOT conduct which any of our future men who will someday walk this earth should in any way emulate. I and many others were understandably moved by his excellent speech - and his valiant display of fatherhood.

As for people being outraged and upset at Efren Carrillo's actions, I agree that they are - and for very good reason, for NEVER, EVER did we think that we would have a politician engaging in such a flagrant display of conduct unbecoming right here in our very own backyards. In fact, I would have been even more shocked had there not been such an outcry.

As for your contention, Fed Up, that he was "leaving," you obviously did not attend the court trial, nor have you followed the case sufficiently, for if you had, you would have known that Efren frightened not one but THREE WOMEN so badly that they felt it necessary to arm themselves with butcher knives and line up in lockstep formation to defend themselves against a potential attacker; and Efren testified that when he heard a man's voice, he decided to leave. Funny thing is, there was NO MAN inside that apartment....

5 likes, 3 dislikes
Posted by Thomas Bonfigli on 05/09/2014 at 12:00 PM

Re: “Letters to the Editor: May 7, 2014

Sarah Liz Uyehara's letter needs to be published in the Press Democrat as well as the Bohemian to reach the larger audience. I blame the Press Democrat for the negative and damaging reporting on Efren Carrillo from the beginning. They shaped reader's ideas into believing that Efren intended to harm his neighbor and that he is a sexual predator. That's ridiculous! A male or female (especially a drunk one) wanting sex is not sinister, evil, nor abnormal.

An important element that was conveniently glossed over was that when the police arrived, Efren was away from the apartment, he was leaving. He was NOT trying to force his way into the woman's apartment and he did not "rip off the screen" as some have said. he put his hand through it trying to knock on the window. Poor judgement, yes. Criminal? No.

Anyone who has experienced alcoholism first hand (and binge drinking has it's own complexities) can understand that what happened that night was not something a sober Efren Carrillo would do. Poor judgement was fueled by his disease.

He has taken responsibility and I commend him for baring his soul and not trying to cover anything up, like most politicians do. He has done great work professionally and I support him and his decision to press on.

3 likes, 4 dislikes
Posted by Fed Up on 05/09/2014 at 8:59 AM

Re: “Letters to the Editor: May 7, 2014

I was deeply moved by Sarah Liz Uyehara's letter in this week's Bohemian. As someone who has worked in the restorative justice field, everything she said resonated with restorative justice principles. It was a beautiful and inspiring letter.

The reality is that until we stop stigmatizing, shaming, judging, and punishing people for making mistakes in judgement, people will not be able to look at their (and our) behavior realistically nor will they (or we) be able to make true amends and be welcomed back into their (and our) communities. Do we really want to permanently exile people for stupid, drunken behavior? Yes, I know the officer involved said that Efren really wasn't drunk, but without a blood test, how would he know for sure? Efren has admitted he was a binge drinker; most binge-drinkers have black-outs. The description of his strange behavior on that night definitely sounded like black-out behavior. It's also obvious that by doing what he did, he scared the crap out of himself. It was his "bottom" in 12-step parlance; only one direction was left to him: up. And he has been moving in that direction ever since, to his credit.

I have been appalled at the vitriol and open hatred directed at Efren, especially by this allegedly "enlightened" community. Turns out this "progressive" area isn't so open-minded and openhearted as they like to think they are. Seeing the picture in the Press Democrat yesterday of a father holding what looks like a three year old in his arms while his face is contorted with rage as he hurls judgement and shame at another human being, I couldn't help but wonder what lessons that child is learning about human behavior.

I've read postings on local online bulletin boards and letters to editors that claimed knowledge of terrible motivations for Efren's behavior; many were filled with coded racist and bigoted language. People jumped to all kinds of conclusions without real proof that their conjectures had any basis in fact. The revenge fantasies were incredibly disturbing.

Believe me, I do not, nor will I ever condone the kind of behavior Efren displayed on that night last July, but this young man showed tremendous courage Tuesday listening to not only the other supervisors chastise him, but he also sat through what looked like what one observer called " a public stoning with words." For THREE HOURS. All this after he displayed sincere remorse, talked about what he is doing to change himself for the better, and expressed understanding that what he did was a huge mistake and was very wrong.

People have been very upset about Efren's initial behavior of getting an attorney, refusing to comment, and going into rehab immediately. What many people do not understand about our justice system and why Efren did this, and then pleaded "not guilty" is that the justice system is adversarial; there is no room for sincere admission of guilt, expression of remorse, any kind of apology or making of amends to the victim with an expectation that that open honesty will be rewarded with a thoughtful, unique-to-the-situation response. Not with mandatory, cookie cutter sentencing in place and certainly not with a public "out for blood." I am sure Chris Andrian explained this to him.

I have facilitated restorative circles where a young person has laid their soul open to a room full of people who they knew hated them for what they had done and I have seen those victims who were filled with hatred soften and begin the process of forgiveness, because they have seen the sincerity in that young person's eyes. I've seen that same sincerity in Efren's eyes; he cannot hide the shame and remorse he feels and that is such a good sign that he has already changed for the better.

Too bad a restorative process wasn't done instead of a trial. And too bad he was tried and convicted in the public sphere and by the media before he got anywhere near the courtroom. I venture to say that the outcome would have been much more healing for the victim, her family and friends, as well as Efren, his family and friends, and the community.

4 likes, 5 dislikes
Posted by Tori Coto on 05/08/2014 at 10:39 PM

Re: “Letters to the Editor: May 7, 2014

Sarah Liz Uyehara in her Letter to the editor of May 7th has put into words exactly what I think and feel about our 5th District Supervisor. Of all of the news articles and letters to the editor I have read on this topic, Ms. Uyehara's letter has me jumping for joy!
I will applaud any person who is taking the steps to become healthy by confronting their addiction and by making decisions every day in a most brave and often difficult fashion to stop imbibing.
I have siblings who are alcoholic and a father who was alcoholic. I am thrilled that Mr. Carrillo is on the road to recovery . I wish him well, especially considering the onslaught of reprimands and demands he is meeting at every turn.

I am not in denial of his absurd and demeaning actions under the influence and neither is he.
I am also not making light of what happened and the people that were on the receiving end of his bad behavior. I have made many hurtful mistakes too.

Stay in office, Efren. Do what you must to stay sober and in 5 or 10 years from now when you have effected considerable change in your life, this judgmental brouhaha will be behind you. Know that some of your constituents are proud of you and want you to stay in office.
I am 100% behind you in this difficult and challenging time.
Ann Krinard

4 likes, 7 dislikes
Posted by Ann Krinard on 05/08/2014 at 12:58 PM

Re: “Letters to the Editor: May 7, 2014

If Efren Carrillo were truly concerned about taking responsibility for his actions, changing his evil ways, making amends with Jane Doe and serving as a role model for our youth, he would have resigned a long time ago and spared this county and its good, dedicated, hardworking people the pain and agony that has been the end result of his SECOND run-in with the law. It is clear that he needs to spend time working on his demons, but until he makes the decision to put the people and this county AHEAD of his own insatiable desire for his own political and personal self-aggrandizement, he will not be able to do so. And, quite frankly, I don't want him doing this on my time - and on my dime. He has had plenty of chances to make amends and has failed miserably at each one of them - including at yesterday's Board of Supervisors meeting, where he continued engaging in his now-familiar version of "the blame game," blaming his current political woes on his now-plentiful political detractors. Supervisor Shirlee Zane described it as "reprehensible," and I couldn't agree with her more if I tried.

8 likes, 4 dislikes
Posted by Thomas Bonfigli on 05/07/2014 at 11:40 AM

Re: “Letters to the Editor, April 2, 2014

The challenges faced by U.S. soldiers who served in Iraq and Afghanistan. "I went to the VA, and I wanted treatment for this or that or the other thing, and all they would give me is highly addictive narcotic painkillers, opiates, which are similar in their chemical makeup to heroin." They found a 270 percent increase in the number of opiate prescriptions that these doctors at the VA were writing. And we also found incredible, wild variation in how many prescriptions doctors were writing depending on where a veteran happened to live.
The rise in psychological trauma associated with the war in Iraq and Afghanistan should not surprise experts. The extent of wartime trauma is directly proportional to the type of warfare fought and the experiences encountered. Studies of Vietnam veterans show that between 26 and 31 percent have experienced PTSD. This rate is understandable given that the Vietnam War combat environment included both guerilla and conventional warfare. It is arguable that the war in Iraq compares to the Vietnam War, as there is no safe place, no enemy lines, and threats surround the soldier on all sides. Situations that can contribute to the development of PTSD.
I work as a volunteer Counselor at the VA Hospital in Menlo Park,CA for 17 years as a musician therapist. I work mostly with Vietnam Vets. War is the national creed of America. So, even though in Washington they knew this was a problem, they didn’t manage it. They allowed doctors who are overstressed, with so many people coming back from war and not nearly enough training or time to treat them, to reach for their prescription pad and write these prescriptions for medications that might dull the pain temporarily, but can have horrible, tragic, sometimes even fatal, results.

Ted Rudow III, MA

1 like, 0 dislikes
Posted by Ted Rudow III on 04/05/2014 at 1:44 PM

Re: “Letters to the Editor, March 5, 2014

Economy built on wars

Dear Editor: President Barack Obama has dropped a measure to trim cost-of-living increases in Social Security from an upcoming budget proposal. While the move was praised by progressive Democrats, the White House admitted the cuts, known as chained CPI, remain "on the table," but only as part of a grand bargain deal with Republicans.

They even convinced lots of poor people that they were right and persuaded them to voluntarily give up some of the few things they had to make them even poorer and the rich even richer, so the rich could have more and more and the poor less and less.

They love U.S. materialism, but they hate U.S. policies and wars. Well, U.S. materialism was built on wars, both military and economic ones. They keep their economy going by preparing for wars or selling weapons to others who are fighting wars. And there's many an economic and trade war that America fights that you never hear reported in the papers -- the wars where they trounce their competitors in selling goods or force others to open their markets to U.S. goods and companies, often in coercive or sneaky, underhanded, illegal ways.

Ted Rudow III,

Palo Alto

Posted by Ted Rudow III on 03/06/2014 at 10:56 AM

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