Tuesday, December 31, 2013

How the City of Vallejo is dealing with banks involved in improper foreclosure proceedings

City Manager’s Bi-Weekly Report, Volume 1, Issue 18, June 21, 2013. Daniel E. Keen, City Manager
OFFICE OF THE CITY ATTORNEY - Neighborhood Law Program (NLP)
NLP attroneys have also been collaborating with the California Monitor in charge of overseeing the national mortgage settlement to ensure banks involved in improper foreclosure proceedings clean up nuisance properties.
NLP attorneys presented to the Vallejo Chamber of Commerce, continue to meet with community groups, attend regular meetings with the Vallejo lamplighters and Fighting Back Partnership, and meets with newly formed Neighborhood Block watch groups.

Sunday, December 29, 2013

Memorial gathering for Oscar Grant, January 1st, 2014

Oscar Grant 5th annual vigil/celebration
January 1st, 12 Noon, at Grant Station (Fruitvale BART Station)
For more information, visit [www.facebook.com/events/588176761237297]
Organized by the Oscar Grant Foundation [www.oscargrantfoundation.com] [www.facebook.com/OscarGrantFoundation]
All Families of Love one killed by Gun Violence, Please bring an 8x10 photo and Love one favorite color balloon to be release.
Come meet us at the Grant Station for the 5th annual vigil/celebration for Oscar Grant to be held on New Year’s Day at the Grant Station (Fruitvale BART Station).
Join the Oscar Grant family on this Day of Remembrance!...
* Family of murdered victims
* Artist
* Community Activist

LIVE Performances:
* Libation
* African-Native-Latino Ceremony
* Poetry, music, spoken word
* Candle lighting, Balloon Releasing
* Words of inspiration Min. Keith Muhammad
* RGB--Young Gifted and Black--Our Children

* Ryan Coogler -- Director of Fruitvale Station
* Skyler Jett -- Preforming "Peace is the Answer" [youtube.com/watch?v=bl0zUwLoRzM]
* Taylor Burrise, [youtube.com/watch?v=xDIPnh9yl-o]
* Sabel
* Rankin Scroo, [facebook.com/events/588176761237297/?ref_dashboard_filter=calendar]
* Kev Choice, [youtube.com/watch?v=bxELIiH4Q9Q#t=44]
* A.D.Burrise
* Jasiri X – Preforming [youtube.com/watch?v=-kvI1McyLPI#t=42]
* Ras Ceylon ", an emcee, educator and organizer bringing revolutionary music, a hip-hop meets reggae dynamic and explosively conscious lyrics."
* Sellassie Blackwell Lyrical, Positive Hip Hop. artist representing the Bay Area will be doing a tribute to Oscar Grant.
* And many more artist to be announced

1. We Are ALL STILL Oscar Grant
2. We should never forget
3. Release a balloon in the name of your Love one Killed
4. Come to embrace and Support all who have lost a Love one to Gun Violence
5. Show your Love to Oscar Grant daughter, Tatiana, now 8yrs old

Much Love from Tatiana and family of Oscar Grant, Hope to see you at the vigil!! "We Are All Still Oscar Grant".
There will be poetry, music, spoken word, candle lighting, Balloon releasing and speak out.
“Every tragedy represents an opportunity to move the agenda for justice forward.”
We cannot forget and will not forget what happen on January 1, 2009 at 2:11 am.
Join us in remembering and celebrating our martyr comrade brother, Oscar Grant.
His life was taken to remind us that We Are All Oscar Grant.
* It was the COMMUNITY that led to the resignation of Alameda County District Attorney Tom Orloff.
* It was the COMMUNITY that led to the resignation of Bart Chief of Police, Chief Gee.
* It was the COMMUNITY that led to the resignation of Bart General Manager, Dorothy Dugger.
* It was the COMMUNITY that led to the resignation of police officer Johannes Mehserle.
* It was the COMMUNITY that led to the Department of Justice to open a investigation of Civil Rights violation against the Bart Police.
* It was the COMMUNITY that led the demonstration Downtown Oakland, making it known, "No Justice, No Peace".
* It was the COMMUNITY that joined with the ILWU Local 10 to shutdown l the ports in Northern California.
* It was the COMMUNITY that helped usher in the US 9th Circuit Court of Appeals establishing that using stun guns without an imminent threat of harm is unreasonable.
* The COMMUNITY have made HISTORY, not VICTORY for the first time in 458 years of California History a officer was charged, arrested, convicted and sentenced to prison for killing a unarmed Black Man in the line of duty. Victory is when we have DESTROYED a racist criminal justice system and replaced with a true Freedom, Justice & Equality for ALL people!

ONYX Organizing Committee / 1Fam presents... 

Following Photos by Vivian Louise @ Oscar Grant 5th Year Memorial Vigil at Fruitvale BART  

Saturday, December 28, 2013

Contra Costa Sheriffs attacking people who live solely on boats along the coast between Antioch to Discovery Bay

"Sheriffs in Contra Costa County Plan to Impound all Live Aboard Vessels in Delta Region"
2013-12-28 by Amber Cifaldi ( cifaldi.amber [at] yahoo.com ) [https://www.indybay.org/newsitems/2013/12/28/18748491.php]:
Police in Contra Costa plan to seize all live aboard vessels from Antioch to Discovery Bay. This will leave dozens of people on fixed incomes homeless this winter. The Sheriffs intend to make recovery of these vessels difficult by substantially increasing the associated costs. Many veterans, disabled, and impoverished will lose their homes and one of the few affordable options available to those who do not qualify or currently waiting for rent subsidy programs.
The Sheriffs in Contra Costa County recently informed residents in the delta region about their intention to take their boats (their homes) as soon as the funds for next year are available. This will affect a large segment of low income people who live aboard their vessels because they have no other options of securing shelter that is within their financial means. The police intend to carry out their assault on the impoverished despite the fact that there is NO county ordinance prohibiting live aboard vessels. The county ordinance stipulates those who live aboard their vessels must have coast guard approved sanitation and the vessel must have a functional engine capable of moving the vessel. The ordinance also states that mooring at a private residence is permissible and a live aboard vessel is able to anchor in open water for up to 30 consecutive days anywhere that does not block other boat traffic. I was informed by the marine patrol that registered vessels that are in legal slips are not exempt from seizure if someone is living on them. They plan to blatantly disregard the property rights of these individuals and impose exuberant fees to recover their property because they are poor. Since they are too poor to afford the type of justice our system dispenses these peace officers figure they will get away with it without any consequence. That is no way to protect and serve the community.

Friday, December 27, 2013

War against dissent and the poor in Humboldt County

- Humboldt County war against folks without homes [link
- Censoring criticism of Human Rights Abuse by Police [link]
- Suppression of "Occupy Eureka" [link]
- Repression of culture and cannabis in Humboldt County [link]

Inquiry into selective enforcement of smoking ban specifically against homeless and disabled folks in Santa Cruz

* Freedom of Information Campaign by John Colby against Human Rights abuse in Santa Cruz [link]
* Human Rights abuse in itty-bitty Santa Cruz [link]

"This is where I'm going with this story — I hope the media and the U.S. Senate follow me"
2013-12-27 message from John Colby:
I will be bringing this up with the USDOJ and the CA DOJ, as well as with HUD's OIG and the Treasury OIG. Santa Cruz seems to only care about enforcing their smoking laws against certain kinds of smokers, primarily (disabled) homeless people.
In May 2011 (while you had an open USDOJ Fair Housing complaint and also were a HUD OIG complainant), you petitioned the Santa Cruz City Council, the City Manager, the City Attorney and City Housing Programs Director Carol Berg — who informed you just afterwards that your fixed HOME unit had been illegally removed from the HUD HOME program as retaliation for requesting a disability accommodation from them for secondhand smoke coming from the common areas around your car and apartment — to enforce their non smoking ordinance in Mission Gardens common areas where by city ordinance it was illegal. Mission Gardens is a HUD Section 8, California Tax Credit Allocation Committee (CTCAC) and City of Santa Cruz administered property — they did nothing to protect you from disability motivated hate crimes meant to physically harm you and to run you out of Mission Gardens and off the Section 8, CTCAC and HOME programs.
Thus it is sadly ironic that the Santa Cruz City Council keeps tightening the screws on smoking by (disabled) homeless people. I guess if the Mission Gardens residents trying to smoke you out had been (disabled) homeless people, the Santa Cruz Police Department would have protected you.
This is very embarrassing for the state and federal governments. They have been allowing Santa Cruz to harass (disabled) homeless people with their anti-smoking ordinances while allowing a gang of housed criminals to commit disability motivated hate bias crimes against you. I think you have or will get COPD from your many years of exposure to secondhand smoke at Mission Gardens. You probably have permanent lung damage and still could die from the city, state and federal governments not protecting you.
It seems like HUD, CalHFA, CTCAC, the CA DOJ and the USDOJ — as well as state and federal legislators — don't have the guts to take on secondhand smoke discriminating against disabled people because they're beholden to the Big Tobacco companies. They also seem to prefer criminals who happen to be belligerent smokers and drug addicts — like Robin Jansen, Rory Lachica, Craig Akey and Tania Story — over law abiding disabled people who live in the housing of last resort because they're poor and disabled.
I suppose Mari Tustin's money has not only bought off HUD, CalHFA, CTCAC, and the City of Santa Cruz — but as I have read on the Internet — state and federal legislators too. Scandalous!
This is newsworthy!

Santa Cruz: Echos of the 'Code Blue' campaign of terror against homeless residents

Human Rights abuse in itty-bitty Santa Cruz [link]

"Bring Back Code Blue" Sticker Found in Downtown Santa Cruz
2013-12-27 by Alex Darocy [http://www.indybay.org/newsitems/2013/12/27/18748471.php]:
Update (2014-01-01): An associate contacted me and reported seeing a Bring Back Code Blue sticker, like the one pictured in this article, stuck on the bumper of a car that was driving in downtown Santa Cruz on December 30.
On December 25, a sticker with the statement "Bring Back Code Blue! Santa Cruz, CA" printed on it was found on a no trespassing sign located on Bulkhead Street at the rear entrance to the parking lot of two businesses in downtown Santa Cruz. (I spotted the sticker when I was walking on Bulkhead Street.)
Many residents remember the phrase "code blue" as a reference to when officers within the Santa Cruz Police Department organized a pattern of violent assaults on homeless or "street" people in the 1980s.
As the story goes, when police found a person on the street they wanted to attack, they used the phrase "code blue" over their radios to call other officers to the scene to participate in the beating. Today, little information about what has been called "operation code blue" is easily accessible by the public. In 2012, Deputy Chief of Police Steve Clark did publicly confirm he was originally hired to fill a position within the SCPD that became vacant after the police attacks became public knowledge in the 1980s.
The bartender working on Christmas at the Rush Inn, which is one of the businesses that uses the parking lot, said she was filling in that day and that she didn't know who placed the sticker on the sign, or what it meant. When she was informed that "code blue" was a possible reference to the police practice of assaulting homeless people, she was appalled and immediately removed the sticker from the sign.
Clarification: No one tipped me off. I spotted the sticker by chance when walking on Knight Street. The sticker appeared to be brand new, and when the bartender pealed it off of the sign it came off cleanly.

"Wishful thinking: A personal history of 'code blue'"
2013-12-28 by Razer Ray [http://www.indybay.org/newsitems/2013/12/27/18748471.php?show_comments=1#comments]
I remember those guys. Catanni, Reyes, Chevalier, and another one or two whose names I don't recall, when Gino Pini was Chief of Police and the old conservative 'regime' ruled Santa Cruz (Chevalier shoved me, while in uniform, in public one day in front of the Peppermill restaurant by the alley next to the location where Plaza visions Optical is now, because he was looking for someone and was frustrated by my not knowing)
I'm going to write WHAT I KNOW PERSONALLY FROM OBSERVING THEM AND "DEALING" WITH THEM and would LUV to see other people's PERSONAL experiences recounted here (NOT myths, third hand stories and rumors... all immediately discounted as bullshit)
Sidebar: At that time it might be noted there was a much larger percentage of travelers, and not as many displaced local people with longstanding connections to the community in the 'streett' population. Which leads me to believe, along with other social factors such as a typically much more educated SCPD officer than those Jock High School graduates (Education? Catanni ended up an alcoholic working at an East Side liquor store for decades) who took the prereqs for eligibility as police officers and that's all (One patrol officer I know has his masters in Sociology... He KNOWS why the 'problems of Santa Cruz' exist and probably reads the NY Times, not the Senile) the same "Code Blue" scenario is NOT viable in the current mileau. Dispatch... As we will see, plays prominently into this and the logging required in these days of Homeland Insecurity would also prevent the following collusion I describe.
And that IS the bigger issue... The "Code Blue" boys worked in COLLUSION with on-duty officers, despite denials all around from the SCPD and the city at the time of the SCPD's dismantling by the state for that "alleged collusion"... not for the acts of the off-duty cops themselves.
Now... My story, which illustrates that SOMEONE at the SCPD must have known what was going on.
Alex Darocy: "As the story goes, when police found a person on the street they wanted to attack, they used the phrase "code blue" over their radios to call other officers to the scene to participate in the beating."
This is not the way it worked.
The code blue goons were four or five SCPD local boyz who hung out together at the dingy old Del Mar bar in the Palomar arcade where the Palomar restaurant bar is now. They worked OFF-DUTY. I'll repeat OFF DUTY, thugging not only the occasional homeless person who had personally pissed them off, but local kids who annoyed them as well.
At the time quite a few local kidz were very much into burglarizing the nuevo-riche homes springing up as the computer industry expanded over the hill (similar sociology to Hawaiian loco's, and haolie tourist's motel rooms getting looted while the tourists are out 'touring' for the day) making them not just 'jail bait' but seen by the goons as 'problems' in the same manner homeless people were considered to be undesirable and problems.
What I witnessed (besides the shoving incident w/ Chevalier recounted above):
It was a summer evening at the old Santa Cruz Metro station. At that time (early 80s) the 'bus station' was ON Soquel between Pacific and Front on both sides of the street. The Soquel parking lot was in the same place but it was just a parking lot not a multi-story building. The bathrooms, park style, and a driveway where the alley next to the Trust Building now is, are in essentially the same places as that time. Next to the driveway towards Pacific, the original Pizza My Heart, and then farther towards Pacific, Uncle Gaylord's Ice Cream store.
I was standing waiting for a bus and a couple of local kids/problem children... Billy P (name withheld. He's a well known local auto mechanic now) and Gabe Butterfield (Yes... Paul Butterfield the blues musician's son) were dawdling near the bathroom next to the driveway when a private car sped out of the lot screeching to a halt in the driveway egress to the street. All 4 doors (maybe 3... it IS a long time you know?) flung open and the Code Blue boys jumped out, just like in the cop movies, with sticks and bats... the car still rocking from the sudden stop.
Billy and Gabe seemed to know what was up and started running. A couple of "Code Blues" (again OFF-DUTY and OUT OF UNIFORM) chased Gabe up to Pacific and northbound while the other literally started thugging Billy up against the window of Pizza My Heart with at LEAST a hundred people at the bus stop watching, stunned. People hollerd at him but no one was willing to attempt getting the the guy, who banging Billy's head against the glass of Pizza My Heart's window, off him
Mist likely because it all happened to fast and they looked too well organized and mo one wanted to get into that 'mix'.
All of a sudden, it couldn't have been longer than a minute or two, a couple of police cars sped onto the scene blocking Soquel, and one immediately got the goons off of Billy while the other one chased northbound on Pacific on foot.
I remember commenting cynically to the person standing next to me at the bus stop: "Watch what happens when that cop comes back around the corner..."
Sure enough, Gabe was in handcuffs and the off duty cop was walking with them, his stick MIA, and as they took Gabe across to the police car on the B of A (New Leaf) side of the street I hollered
"HEY! You've got the wrong guy! Those people just jumped that kid with a bat for NO REASON!"
The cop turned to me, still in the middle of the street with Gabe in handcuffs, with a hundred people looking at us, and said: "Shut Up!"
I retorted:  "What do you mean shut up?
The cop came back with: "You want to go to jail too?"
Then he piled Gabe in the car and left. At least a hundred people witnessed this thugging incident.
Eventually these guy's bravado and arrogance got the best of them. They were actually going around to local businesses pitching for donations to assist their 'work'. Then they pitched the guy who owned Morris-Abrams clothiers... where the Indian restaurant is at the corner of Lincoln/Pacific now. It was a small clothes store that sold mostly men's stuff, including Boy Scout uniforms and other BSA paraphernalia and kits.
Morris-Abrams was owned by an old (snigger) Eastern European Jew.
I'm sure he smiled as they pitched him and told them what a great idea it was even as he was thinking WTF? These guys are BlackShirts!
shortly after that... he didn't bother going to the city or county legal people, or the SCPD's Internal Affairs, he went straight to the State AG's office and the dismantling of the SCPD began.
The new Chief of police, Jack Bassett if I remember correctly, was from Cleveland, and hired a LOT of new officers who came from larger cities, and for the most part, the new guys took one look, said what crime?, and things calmed down a lot... for a while anyway.
Today the thugging is institutionalized, NOT COWBOY JUSTICE.
Don't turn your back on them. They'll say you were fleeing and faceplant you!
You MIGHT get 'ticket blitzed' and made an incarcerated 'scofflaw'.
NEVER make any quick moves around ANY COP ANYWHERE ANYTIME!
No matter who, and I pointed no finger, it's an attempt to cause recollection of something truly unlikely to occur in the same fashion if only due to the DHS proscribed logging of all unit's comms and literal realtime location data for them, and other less obvious, arguable perhaps, sociological reasons.
So all that's really possible from a wish for a "Code Blue" anymore is derived from the "Vigilante Meme" inherent in the events of the early 80s.
It's stupid no matter who did it.
I KNOW the owner of a store nearby from a music industry relationship in the 80s, and I can tell you, beyond ANY shadow of a doubt, that person would NOT condone a "Code Blue" of ANY sort.
If the jackwad who put that sticker up is reading this is intent on organizing such a relationship with SCPD officers, or intends to act on the meme inherent in that sticker with a group of civilian vigilantes. Be forewarned. Your 'code blue' dream could quickly become your criminal court nightmare and not even Robert Norse will come to picket in your name because ... Snigger... Your kind just ain't welcome 'round these parts by the RESPECTABLE MEMBERS of the community. Ya hear?

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Individual Freedom in a Democratic Society

In a democratic society, the individual is allowed to naturally exist, to seek employment, collect food and seek education without restrictions that contradict Human Rights standards.

Worker’s Liberty to be free of cultural domination by an employer...

In a democratic society, the individual is free to live voluntarily without a government. See the "Mountain Man" of North America [link] and the "Freegan" [freegan.info].
Currently, as the following article shows, it is forbidden to be without a Federal social-security card, without which you are forbidden to gain lawful employment, participate in social programs, receive aid, conduct personal motorized transportation, or receive accredited education.
"Vallejo man trying to discover his past, Says he can't recall where he's from, authorities can't help"
2013-12-22 by Irma Widjojo from "Vallejo Times-Herald" [http://www.timesheraldonline.com/news/ci_24776039/vallejo-man-trying-find-his-past]:
Vincent Bordeaux, 51, said he doesn't remember anything, or very little, of his past life. He is desperate to find his birth certificate to get a Social Security card so he can get a job. Vincent associates with plates at the Christian Help Center thrift shop where he volunteers because he has a memory from his past about plates. (Chris Riley/Times-Herald)

He says his name is Vincent Bordeaux. He says he's 51.
Problem is, he has no proof of either claim.
Bordeaux, or whoever he is, has been volunteering and living at the Christian Help Center, Vallejo's only homeless shelter, since May, 2011. Anything before that, he says, is all a blur.
Now, without a Social Security number or identity card, Bordeaux said he's "living in a no man's zone."
Without a Social Security number, Bordeaux is unable to get a proper job. He said he's been to the Social Security office five times, only to be told each time that he needs a copy of his birth certificate to apply for the card.
The only issue is he says he doesn't remember where he was born, and Internet searches have not been successful.
"His name might not even be Vincent Bordeaux," said Jeff Podemski, Christian Help Center's assistant director.
However, Bordeaux insists that the name is in fact his.
"I remember my uncle saying 'Vincent Bordeaux, you get out!'" he said in an interview.
Despite all the uncertainties, Podemski is sure of one thing.
"I really believe that he's telling the truth," Podemski said. "I don't think he's making it up.
"I don't think it's a hoax."
A bespectacled man who speaks with a Southern twang, Bordeaux said he remembers that he has been chronically homeless since 2001 in New Jersey, and has had no form of identification for a long time.
However, even though he says he doesn't remember a lot of things from his past, Bordeaux does remember a lot of dates, especially pertaining to family members' births and deaths; brand names typically from the East Coast; and various things about his passion: vintage Chevrolets.
He said his parents died when he was very young, and his uncle by marriage was the one who raised him, until he moved out in the early 1980s in North Carolina. But he said he does not remember specific addresses.
"I go online to look at the streets in North Carolina to jog my memory," Bordeaux said.
He said he came to California in 2011 on a promise of a job in San Francisco. He was given bus fare to Vallejo, where he met a man who offered him a place to stay at his apartment on Sutter Street.
"He was a nice man," Bordeaux said ruefully.
In his memory, that first decision in this city was the beginning of his past-less existence.
At the apartment, Bordeaux recalls being offered a cup of coffee. And that was the last moment he remembers until five days later when he woke up under the State Route 37 overpass, he said.
Though he said he was not physically injured, he woke up confused and not remembering most of his past.
"I should have just poured the coffee down the toilet," Bordeaux said.
After wandering Vallejo's streets for three days, someone in the downtown area referred him to the Christian Help Center.
However, because of his bizarre story, he was reported to and taken by police, but was never arrested or processed for any crime, he said. Vallejo police confirmed that there have been no criminal charges against anyone with his name by the department for the past few years.
Bordeaux said he was fingerprinted twice but police couldn't find a match in the department's system.
Since then, he's been volunteering as the center's thrift store night security guard, as well as the male's transitional home manager.
Podemski said Bordeaux has been helpful at the center.
"He's very honest ... he's very diligent and detail oriented," Podemski said.
Podemski said Bordeaux has not been able to consult with a therapist or specialist because of a lack of health care coverage. But he's witnessed Bordeaux's determination to discover his past.
"He's been trying very hard to get his Social Security (number); he wants to get out," Podemski said.
Although strange, Bordeaux's story is apparently not unheard of.
Todd Matthews of the National Missing and Unidentified Persons System, or NamUs, said he hears of similar cases two to three times a year.
NamUs operates under the U.S. Department of Justice.
"They are not extremely common, but it happens," Matthews said.
The organization will work with individuals trying to find their identities, through DNA matches or fingerprints, he said. A person's DNA can be matched from the system's database.
However, the case will have to be verified, usually via local enforcement, Matthews said. Since no crime has taken place in Bordeaux's case, it could slow things a little, but Matthew said the organization is willing to consult with him to discuss his next steps.
There have been a few similar cases in the U.S. reported in the media, and not all have happy endings, Matthews added. The story of Benjaman Kyle, a man found in Georgia in 2004, was widely publicized, yet the man remains unidentified.
In the meantime, Bordeaux said he's going to keep searching for possible family members to get hold of his birth certificate.
"I want to get a legitimate job like everyone else," Bordeaux said. "It's frustrating, I'm at my wit's end. (The officials) don't have a clue what it feels like not having a Social Security card."
Bordeaux says he has no tattoos nor piercings, and has always worn a watch on his left wrist. He's about 5-foot, 5 1/2-inches tall, and weighs 160 pounds.
He also has a part in a movie "The Changing Season" by The Lord's Fellowship Assembly of God, which will be screened at the Empress Theatre at 10 a.m. and 3 p.m., today.
For the past two years, the Christian Help Center has been Bordeaux's family. Even though he said he's happy and will miss everyone if he discovers his past, Bordeaux cannot wait to find out about himself.
"I just want it all get cleared up," he said.
Those who might recognize Bordeaux, can contact him at the center at (707) 553-8192.

Monday, December 23, 2013

Natural Rights and nudity in San Francisco city

Public nudity is a Natural Right, as long as nudity does not accompany sexual exploitation and infringement on liberty. This Natural Right was normalized in San Francisco County, continuing the culture exhibited by the peace and freedom movement remembered today as the "hippies".
Gypsy Taub is the most famous advocate of the Natural Right to be nude outdoors, having arrived from her youth in the former Soviet Federation of Russia of the 1980s, where cultural freedoms and Natural Rights as they existed then were respected, as they are no longer in San Francisco where recently a ban on all public nudity was enacted. Together with her husband Jaymz Smith, they are joined by a growing consciousness for freedom of being left alone unmolested.

S.F. police surround a van holding Gypsy Taub and Jaymz Smith, who were arrested for public nudity at their naked wedding Thursday. Photo: Michael Short, The Chronicle [http://www.sfgate.com/opinion/article/Dance-Party-draws-viewers-5083306.php]:

More photographs and text from "Naked truth behind Gypsy Taub's nude nuptials", 2013-12-16 by Sam Whiting from "San Francisco Chronicle" [http://www.sfgate.com/bayarea/article/Naked-truth-behind-Gypsy-Taub-s-nude-nuptials-5070034.php]. Here are some of the photos:
Gypse Taub, right, and her fiance Jaymz Smith sit for a portrait on the front steps of their home in Berkeley, CA, Friday, December 13, 2013. Nudity activists Gypsy Taub and her fiance Jaymz Smith are planning a naked wedding on the steps of San Francisco City Hall on Dec. 19. Photo: Michael Short, The Chronicle

During a public hearing for legislation proposed by Supervisor Scott Wiener that would ban nudity on public streets, Gypsy Taub takes her clothes off during the public comment session of the hearing in San Francisco City Hall on Monday Nov. 5, 2012 in San Francisco, Calif.

Gypsy Taub with fiance Jaymz Smith at her wedding announcement in San Francisco, in November. Chronicle file photo

Sunday, December 22, 2013

Costco, employer of prison labor, censors information describing prisoner solitary confinement as torture

The following article shows how an individual Costco executive personally censored information about Solitary Confinement, which is used against Prison Labor employed by Costco as a method of control over the workers, and which is categorized as torture by the United Nations.

"Solitary Confinement: Too Controversial for Costco"
2013-12-13 by James Ridgeway and Jean Casella [http://solitarywatch.com/2013/12/13/solitary-confinement-commentary-controversial-costco/]:
Editors’ Note: Back in October, Solitary Watch received a request from cut-rate retail giant Costco, for a 450-word essay arguing that solitary should be eliminated. The piece was to be printed in the ”Informed Debate” feature in the company’s giveaway magazine, Costco Connection, which has a readership numbering 20 million people [http://www.costcoconnection.com/connection/201310us#pg23].
Pleased that such a large corporate entity had chosen to air the pros and cons of this controversial subject, Solitary Watch co-director James Ridgeway handed in his piece in November, and was told that the pro-solitary side would be written by an official from the NYSCOBA, the New York State corrections officers union. A month of silence followed.
Two days ago, Solitary Watch received a message saying the entire debate section was being pulled from the January issue at the last minute, due to a decision by “one of the key executives who took exception to the subject.”
(An interesting fact: The behemoth retailer has earned a reputation for taking care of its workers, who earn average salaries more than double those at Walmart. But it also has been known to employ subcontractors who use prisoner labor to package their goods [http://www.motherjones.com/politics/2008/07/what-do-prisoners-make-victorias-secret], and its Code of Conduct bans only “illegal prison labor.”)
Requests for comment to Costco’s corporate communications department yielded no response.
The offending commentary appears below.
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Imagine a room so small that you can stretch your arms out and touch the gray concrete walls. The only objects in the room are a bunk and a toilet, perhaps a few books and a photograph or two.
The room’s narrow window admits only a sliver of natural light, and the solid steel door contains a slot through which a meal tray can pass. You may catch a glimpse of a hand, or hear a voice shouting from nearby. Otherwise you have no contact with another human being.
Imagine spending a month in this room, 23 hours a day, with one hour to exercise alone in a small pen. Now imagine the month stretching to a year–or ten, or twenty.
On any given day, some 80,000 men, women, and children live in conditions like these–not in some far-off totalitarian nation or secret black site, but right here in America’s prisons and jails.
Senator John McCain, who spent two years in solitary confinement as a prisoner of war in Vietnam, later wrote: “It’s an awful thing, solitary. It crushes your spirit and weakens your resistance more effectively than any other form of mistreatment.”
Human rights organizations, religious groups, and the UN have all condemned solitary confinement in excess of 15 days as a form of psychological torture. Other democratic nations have largely eliminated the practice. They separate only a handful of truly dangerous prisoners, and provide even them with opportunities for communication and rehabilitation.
In the United States, in contrast, solitary confinement is a control strategy of first resort. In New York’s state prisons, for example, 5 out of 6 terms in solitary are for nonviolent misbehavior as minor as mouthing off to a corrections officer or having too many pencils or postage stamps.
The effects of solitary, however, are anything but minor. Studies have found that solitary confinement beyond two weeks alters brain function, and produces psychological symptoms ranging from anxiety and depression to full-on psychosis. For the many prisoners with underlying mental illness who end up in solitary, the suffering is even worse.
People in solitary often take to screaming, banging on cell walls, counting cockroaches, cutting themselves, and worse: Although less that 5 percent of all U.S. prisoners are in solitary confinement, 50 percent of prison suicides take place there.
In addition to its human costs, solitary confinement sucks up our tax dollars. Keeping an individual in a “supermax” prison triples the average annual cost of incarceration–from $25,000 to $75,000. Research also shows that people released directly from solitary to the streets are significantly more likely to land back in prison.
Finally, solitary confinement serves no legitimate purpose whatsoever, since it fails to increase the safety of either prisoners or corrections officers. In fact, states that have reduced their use of solitary by up to 75 percent have seen notable drops in prison violence.
We must end this cruel, costly, and counterproductive practice before any more damage is done.

Advocate for Full Employment with a Livable Wage!

"Growing economic divide threatens California dream"
2013-12-20 by Chris Hoene and Luke Reidenbach for "San Francisco Chronicle" [http://www.sfgate.com/opinion/article/Growing-economic-divide-threatens-California-dream-5082586.php]:
In a major economic speech earlier this month, President Obama said that growing inequality and a lack of upward mobility have threatened the fundamental bargain of our nation: "that if you work hard, you have a chance to get ahead."
This idea is at risk here, too, in California.
Our state has seen a growing economic divide over the past generation, with an outsize share of gains accruing to those on the highest rung of the economic ladder. Between 1987 and 2010, more than three-quarters of the total income gains in California went to just the top 10 percent of taxpayers.
Reversing this trend will take both long-term economic growth and a sustained policy response that put real opportunity within reach of all Californians. Yet while the state's economy has improved over the past 3 1/2 years - with unemployment falling and more than 800,000 jobs added - California's recovery since the Great Recession has yet to reach large segments of workers and their families. More than 1 in 4 unemployed Californians have been seeking work for at least a year. And the current job market poses challenges even for Californians who have found work. Nearly 1 out of 12 employed Californians - or more than 1.3 million individuals statewide - are working part time but actually desire full-time employment.
This economy isn't just missing full-time jobs for those who want them; it's lacking pathways to economic advancement. A healthy economy creates opportunity across a variety of job types and wage levels, allowing workers and their families to move up the ladder. However, there is a "missing middle" in California's current recovery. The state's job market is improving at both ends of the wage spectrum - with growth in low-wage and high-wage jobs - but continues to worsen in the middle.
Also key to economic opportunity are real wage gains over time. But for low- and mid-wage workers, typical hourly wages are still stuck well below where they were before the recession. Only among high-wage workers have the gains made during the recovery been large enough to bring the typical hourly wage close to where it was prior to the downturn, after adjusting for inflation.
The job growth of the past few years is significant and suggests that California is on the mend from the deepest economic downturn in the post-World War II era. But if we place this recovery in a broader context, one thing is clear: Serious economic issues that California faced prior to the Great Recession - most notably widening income inequality - are continuing during the recovery.
Meanwhile, a new study by our organization of what it takes to "make ends meet" shows that amid high costs for housing, child care and health care, many Californians are struggling to afford even basic living expenses. California's ongoing challenges underscore the need for a multifaceted policy response. The state's recently approved minimum-wage increase, which will boost earnings for many low-wage workers, is a good first step. But more needs to be done.
Policymakers in California should bolster support for child care, food assistance and other key services that help families afford day-to-day necessities - and also put dollars directly into communities, thus boosting local economies.
State policymakers also should reinvest in education at all levels, from preschool to higher education. This would create jobs in local communities while also laying the groundwork for expanded economic opportunity in the future. As President Obama noted in his speech, high-quality preschool in particular can be critical in helping ensure that all children enter school ready to succeed in the classroom and prepare for rewarding careers.
Further, state and local leaders could promote economic growth by working together on a number of fronts, such as ensuring that workforce development and job training programs are well aligned with the needs of workers and employers, and investing available infrastructure dollars in projects that link regional employment and housing centers.
We hardly need to underscore that the strength of California's recovery will depend in large part on actions taken in Washington. The economy in California and nationally is on the road to recovery, but our elected officials can't afford to sit back and wait for growth to pick up. Policy action will determine whether our state is positioned for a rebound that creates widely shared economic gains, rather than leaving many workers and families behind.

"Rethinking unemployment: 1.3 million workers lose unemployment benefits so Congress can leave for vacation"
2013-12-28 by Brian Becker from "Liberation News" [http://www.pslweb.org/liberationnews/news/13-million-workers-lose.html]:
Unemployed men in line for free food, Chicago, 1931. Before unemployment insurance became law, workers who lost their jobs were left to fend for themselves.

Capitalism requires at all times – during the period of economic expansion or during the bad times of economic recession – that a certain part of the working population be unemployed or maintained in what Marx called the “reserve army of the unemployed.”
If everyone in a capitalist economy had a job then the competition between workers would essentially end. The working class would be fully empowered to demand from each employer that their wages be increased which would mean that the profits for the employers would be reduced. That’s good for workers but very bad for the capitalists.
The phenomenon of unemployment is a profound crisis for each jobless individual and a source of fear for almost all employed workers but it is an opportunity for the capitalists to have unemployed workers compete with each other for jobs.
Under this system capitalists can hire some part of the unemployed when it’s best for their profit margins and fire large numbers of them when it’s best for their profit margins. The only basis for the decision is what is best for the accumulation of profits. The worker is like the machine, useful at times but also expendable and replaceable.
WalMart just opened new stores in Washington D.C. for the first time. They advertised that they would hire 800 people. Nearly 24,000 showed up to apply for these jobs that guarantee a wage that will leave the new worker in poverty. The Walton family that owns WalMart has the equivalent wealth of 41 percent of the population of the United States.
Until 1935, when workers lost their jobs because they were fired or laid off by capitalist employers or because they were told old to keep working, they would be forced to completely fend for themselves. During the 1930s during the economic Depression caused by capitalism millions of people were plunged into widespread hunger and homeless and tens of thousands died from hunger and cold.
In 1935, in the face of growing working class resistance and the rapid growth of communist and socialist influence among the oppressed class the Roosevelt Administration pushed through the Social Security Act that provided the basis for unemployment insurance benefits for the laid off workers and retirement benefits for older workers.
Even with these important reforms most of the unemployed do not receive unemployment insurance and the number that do is going down.
Today, December 28, 2013, 1.3 million workers who have been unemployed for more than six months will lose all their unemployment benefits as a result of the compromise budget agreement worked out between the Democrats and Republicans who wanted to leave Washington D.C. to begin their next vacation. President Obama left with his family for Hawaii after the deal was reached.
By the end of 2013 the percentage of unemployed workers who receive benefits will drop to 26 percent, a record low, according to the National Employment Law Project.
Capitalist political parties want people to think that unemployment is unavoidable – It’s not!
Some members of the capitalist class are politically liberal and others are conservative. Some are Democrats and some are Republicans. The corporations and banks they own give huge amounts of money to both of the ruling class parties. They donate to each as an investment so the outcome won’t matter much.
The ruling class has inculcated the idea that the working class should identify with the Democratic Party or the Republican Party. The last thing they want is for workers to become class conscious enough that they would create their own party which would insist on the creation of a full employment economy where every individual would be guaranteed a job or an income in the case of disability or illness.
The scourge of unemployment is not naturally caused. It is a byproduct of a social and economic order that legalizes the “right” of one very small class in society to become enriched by their employment of working people. The rights of capitalist private property are paramount. The government and courts defend those rights and provide guarantees that particular form of property as sacrosanct.
The working class has no such guarantee. Even their job, the very thing necessary to generate income and sustain the life of the individual workers and their children does not belong to them. Even their job is considered a property right of the capitalist owners.
The first step of a socialist economy is turning this formula upside down. The rights of working people are re-defined. A socialist economy guarantees the right to a job and the right to an income for those who cannot work because of health, disability or age.

Campaign to stop Fed's unconstituional land-grab in Alameda on behalf of private developer

"Stop feds' land grab from state parks"
2013-12-20 from "San Francisco Chronicle" [http://www.sfgate.com/opinion/editorials/article/Stop-feds-land-grab-from-state-parks-5082588.php]:
In an audacious display of bureaucratic arrogance, the federal government is threatening to use its eminent domain powers to seize a state-owned street near Alameda's Crown Beach to accommodate a proposed development of up to 90 homes.
It gets worse. The targeted property is not exactly state surplus. It is a short stretch of McKay Avenue that provides access to the interpretive center at Crab Cove, which sits at the eastern edge of the largest stretch of public beach on the San Francisco Bay. The General Services Administration wants to claim the road to assure utility services for the Roseville (Placer County) developer who outbid the East Bay Regional Park District for the 4-acre site on what is known as Neptune Pointe.
The parks district had hoped to acquire that plot of abandoned federal office space to accommodate a park expansion - funding for which was included in the 2008 Measure WW, which was passed by more than 70 percent of voters in Alameda and Contra Costa counties.
So to sum it up: We have the GSA selling its surplus office park to a private developer for $3 million, a price that was nearly triple the parks district's appraisal, on the presumption that state parks would willingly cede access on McKay Avenue for utilities. When state parks balked, the federal government pulled out the eminent domain threat.
"We're very experienced here at dealing with urban parks and developers and politics ... but this one's for the record books," said Bob Doyle, general manager of the regional parks district. "We just haven't been able to get a fair shake from day one."
State Attorney General Kamala Harris' office recently sent a strongly worded letter to the U.S. Department of Justice about GSA's threat to use eminent domain to seize the street and sidewalks of McKay Avenue.
"We are extraordinarily troubled by GSA's intent to take public land for a private developer's benefit," Deputy Attorney General John Devine wrote.
The letter went on to cite federal law dictating that agencies disposing of surplus property should give priority to public uses, and can offer it to state and local governments for discounts of "up to 100 percent."
The park district had bid $1 million, a third of the sale price to Tim Lewis Communities, a home developer based in Roseville. GSA officials said they needed to get full market value out of that 4-acre plot as part of the offices-consolidation project that made that area surplus.
Doyle directs some of his irritation at the city of Alameda for rezoning the land from office space to residential after the sale. The parks district has filed a lawsuit against the city for making the zoning change without an environmental impact report.
However, Alameda City Manager John Russo called the parks-district lawsuit "a bazooka on a fly" and a big waste of taxpayer dollars. He explained that the zoning change was made because the property was being acquired by a developer - and the growth-resistant suburb has long been under pressure from the state to do more to meet housing demand for diverse income levels.
Besides, Russo added, the developer's initial application with the city is not going anywhere until the McKay Avenue dispute is resolved.
"If you don't have access, you don't have a project," he said, adding, "They all need to get together to work something out."
Here's what should happen in the public interest: The GSA's deal with the developer should be nullified by one or both parties because of the lack of access. Parks officials have made plain they are not giving up the street to a development that would preclude expansion plans and could even come in conflict with the park experience and its operations. The GSA should then strike a deal with the parks district - at a reasonable discount - to facilitate the park expansion that voters overwhelmingly approved five years ago.
Members of Congress need to get off the sidelines and lean on the GSA bureaucrats to work out a deal with the regional parks. The attorney general's office should not be the only high-level voice against the taking of a state-owned street for the benefit of a private developer.

Saturday, December 21, 2013

Andy's Youth demand Justice in Santa Rosa!

Andy's Youth is a campaign created and lead by middle school and high school students in Sonoma County who have been organizing to get justice for their friend Andy Lopez!
Campaign Contact: Nicole Guerra [nicoleguerra83@gmail.com] [707-694-4982]
Justice for Andy Lopez Cruz! [link]
Solidarity against the repression of community organizers in Santa Rosa! [link]

2013-12-21 Letter from Andy's Youth to the Sonoma County Sheriff:
"To the Sheriff:
We have seen you at our marches laughing and trying to scare us. We’re really hurt and we miss Andy. What happened to him was not right. Many of us knew Andy as a little boy and actually lived in Moorland like him. This has not been easy for us, but our strength will last because we love Andy. The whole community has been hurt by the Andy Lopez incident.
We are shocked with what Erick Gelhaus did because it was not right for him to kill Andy. He was just a kid, not a criminal. Our community has been broken but it has also become stronger to get justice for Andy. It is sad to know that Andy Lopez was murdered, his life ended where he grew up. We hope Erick Gelhaus’s Christmas is ruined like how he ruined Andy’s family’s holidays.
We don’t believe that Gelhaus is hurt or traumatized by murdering Andy. Erick’s the one that made a mistake, we are the ones hurt by his actions. Also they should not be arresting Ramon, Louie, or David, they should be arresting Erick Gelhaus instead. We want him to be charged with murder.
[signed] Andy's Youth"

"Andy’s Youth Plan Return to Santa Rosa City Hall"
(this is an official statement from the Justice Coalition for Andy Lopez concerning the intimidation and harassment   Andy's Youth has been standing up against, mentioned during their radio interview on KBBF on Wednesday night)
2013-12-19 press release from Andy's Youth:
Join the community Dec. 20th, 4pm at 100 Santa Rosa Ave.
We ask that people bring candles and wear white.
There will also be a community pot luck at Andy's Park in Moorland this Sunday afternoon, Dec. 22nd.

On Tuesday December 10th, Andy’s Youth and supporters attempted to peacefully enter the Santa Rosa City Council meeting. Andy’s Youth had organized young people from the ages of 10-25 to carry white crosses bearing the names and stories of the 56 Sonoma County victims who died in police related encounters since 2000. Our brother and young friend Andy Lopez was only the most recent. He was shot and killed by Sheriff Gelhaus on October 22nd.
This was the 10th protest since Andy’s murder – ALL OF WHICH HAVE BEEN PEACEFUL. At the door to the Council Chambers, a solid wall of police blocking the way met the protest. Despite announced plans to enter the Council meeting and silently make anger over Andy’s death known, the majority of Council members fled the chamber, which filled with police. The protesters eventually entered, but before leaving, the police arrested Ramon Cairo of the Sonoma County Brown Berets.
The march continued to the Sheriffs’ Department to demand that Ramon be set free. Roving squads of fully armed, riot baton wielding, gas mask hanging from belts, riot police holding back barking German Shepherds - like in history books during the Civil Rights Movement in the South met the protest.
Andy’s Youth may be young – BUT we will not be scared or intimidated by militarized police! Andy’s Youth is returning this Friday at 4pm to City Hall to make their voices heard once again. No quiet until there is Justice for Andy. JAIL GELHAUS NOW!
See "Andy Lopez march Dec. 10, 2013" video (from Wize Video) [https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3W_3undiKII]

Justice for Andy Lopez! observations from Ed. A.

Ed. A. is a respected organizer for Human Rights, Dignity and Justice in Santa Rosa. What follows are his observations during the Justice for Andy Lopez! campaign. He writes, "we're in a battle for credibility with a group of people who are defending shooting a child 7 times!"

2013-12-06 observation from Ed A.:
let's keep in mind the main objective of the Lopez family (to put the cop in jail) as the board of supervisors, the DA, and the cops flood the media with articles about task forces, review boards, and parks. By the way, the Sheriff, the DA, and the mayor will all be putting people on the 'task force.'

2013-12-02 observation from Ed A.:
here's a picture of a cop with one hand on his gun and the other hand on his taser while standing behind two students who have their backs to him. Photo 2013-11-29 from "Pocho-one Fotography"

2013-12-01 observation from Ed A.:
There have been two pieces in the Press Democrat about Andy Lopez today. Both of them have shied away from the fact that students have taken leadership in organizing marches and that their main demand is to put Gelhaus in jail. One of the pieces was about how the students are not taking leadership but are instead being lead by adult agitators, a lie that can be very easily exposed by simply watching the videos of the last two marches, and one was about the possibility of making a park in Andy's name, which is not the primary demand of the Lopez family OR the students (though it is a secondary demand). The people in power are beginning to use the media as their tool to discredit the movement and distract people from its main objective and tactics.

2013-11-25 observation from Ed. A.:
(referencing "March 4 Andy nov 26,13 1:30" [https://www.facebook.com/events/715347051808803/?ref=22]) I have been involved in police accountability work for several years. Last Friday was a historic turning point for Santa Rosa. The students realized their power and escalated the march to a point where they quite literally risked their lives to confront the police who have been abusing them and their families for their whole lives. The same youth you see in the videos taking leadership are organizing a march for tomorrow (Tuesday) at 1:30 in Courthouse Square. Let's follow their leadership and march behind them, in honor of Andy's mom who, at every opportunity that she gets to speak publicly, continues to urge the community to march in support (these last two marches have been in direct response to her speeches at the rosarios). It's been a month since a man murdered a 13 year old boy and he is still on paid vacation. They're hoping they can stall until we give up and are forced to forget and go on with our lives. The youth are showing them that they are not going to forget any time soon.

Anthony Messer, a People's organizer from Santa Cruz who was under attack by Police, suspected to be victim of hit squad

"Evidence That Anthony Messer May Have Been Murdered by Santa Cruz Law Enforcement"
2013-12-21 by Steven Argue of the Revolutionary Tendency:
[Photo: Anthony Messer on right, Former political prisoner Ed Frey on left]

* For more on Anthony Messer, see [https://www.indybay.org/newsitems/2013/12/11/18747660.php].
* For more on how the homeless are treated in Santa Cruz, see [https://www.indybay.org/newsitems/2012/08/05/18718924.php?show_comments=1].
* For more on Ed Frey's case, see [https://www.indybay.org/newsitems/2012/07/29/18718520.php].
* For information on the crisis of homeless children in America, see [http://learning.blogs.nytimes.com/2013/12/12/reading-club-invisible-child/?_r=0].

Anthony Messer, shown here protesting against anti-homeless laws, died December 2nd. I knew Anthony Messer. He was a young homeless veteran. He was also an activist for the rights of the homeless, activist in the Occupy movement, and he stood up against the jailing of political activists in Santa Cruz like Ed Frey and Gary Johnson.
It is no secret that Anthony Messer, like many activists in Santa Cruz, was the victim of vicious police harassment. Here is video of Anthony Messer describing and earlier attempt on his life by Santa Cruz law enforcement where they poured water on him on a cold night:
[begin video description]
"ReOccupy Day 8 Deputies Throw Water at 2AM",
2012-02-24 [http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dEWCKzlJPUk]
Anthony reports that last night at 2AM deputies rousted him by throwing water on him. They soaked him and his sleeping bag. He says he had not shivered so much last night than his deep snow training in Wisconsin.
So much for ReOccupation strategy advise from Lt. Amy Christey of the Santa Cruz County Sheriff Office.
Occupy Santa Cruz maintains a 24/7 protest vigil on the Santa Cruz County Courthouse steps on Water Street. This was the site of the OccuDome which was removed by the Sheriffs on 4Dec2012. The public space is known as the OccuDome Plaza.
Occupy Santa Cruz holds its General Assembly at the OccuDome Plaza on Tuesday and Thursday at 6PM and Saturday at 2PM. Sunday General Assembly is 2PM on the steps of the Santa Cruz Post Office on Front Street. For more information contact Occupy Santa Cruz Media Group at http://occupysantacruz.org/contact
[end video description].

Santa Cruz Police are already known for murdering an activist for the homeless. His name was John Dine. The police shot twice and killed the unarmed John Dine. The official cover-up claimed that John Dine was reaching for what looked like a gun. The Santa Cruz Sentinel claimed that John Dine was a deranged man who was pointing a toy gun at the police. All independent eyewitnesses dispute these accounts. There was no toy gun, pointed or otherwise, when John Dine was shot down in cold blood on Front Street in November of 1998. No police went to prison or were even disciplined for that murder.
Likewise, the Santa Cruz Police had a campaign of murdering homeless people in the 1980s called Operation Code Blue. That is what cops would call it over the radio. What they knew "Operation Code Blue" meant was that they were going to beat a homeless person to death in their sleeping bag. Despite testimony of fellow officers, no cop did time for those crimes.
Anthony Messer died in the middle of a cold snap as police harassment and robbery of tents and sleeping bags had driven homeless people further to the brink. It is my opinion that it is murder to take away people's ability to stay warm in the cold. Further more, dousing homeless people with water on a cold night, as they did to Anthony Messer, is attempted murder.
Santa Cruz law enforcement have a history of committing murder against brave activists for justice like Anthony Masser. In addition, they had already made at least one attempt on Anthony Messer's life. This is evidence. It shows a proclivity of local law enforcement to carry out political repression, even to the point of murder. It shows one attempt that was already made by them on Anthony Messer's life before he died. And it shows a systemic proclivity to cover up murder by local law enforcement, government, and corporate media after the fact.
The Santa Cruz coroner says that Anthony Messer appeared to have died from a fall near his campsite. Was this actually the trauma of a police beating? Homeless activists in town know of clear cases where the coroners office has lied about the violent deaths of homeless people. Truth is, we cannot believe the local government. Without an investigation independent of the local government, there is every reason to be suspicious of the official story.
The fact that homeless people are currently dying from the elements is also a crime. Under this system there is plenty of foreclosed housing owned by banks that could house every homeless person in America.

[signed] Steven Argue for the Revolutionary Tendency,
In Memorium - Anthony Messer Présente!
For a People's Public Inquiry Into the Death of Anthony Massr!
For the Nationalization of the Banks, Expropriation of the Landlords, Abolition of Rent, And Housing For All! For A planned Socialist Economy that Guarantees Health Care, Employment, Housing, and Free Education For All! For Proletarian Revolution in America to Smash the Capitalist State, Including the Liquidation of All Current Law Enforcement Agencies, and the Establishment of Revolutionary Workers State and Workers Democracy!

Solidarity against the repression of a community in Santa Rosa!

Justice for Andy Lopez Cruz! [linkHands off David Douglass! [link
Hands off
Ramon Cairo!
[linkHands off Louie Godoy! [link]
Hands off Jose!
[link] Hands off Andy's Youth! [link]
A pig slams an activist (David Douglass of BAMN) with the "Justice For Andy Lopez!" campaign in Santa Rosa, during an action where outraged community residents marched in the streets! This brother was arrested, and close to 10 cited. These kids got courage, baby, for realz! March for Justice!
PS: The people are leading a NON-VIOLENT MOVEMENT, aside from the Police terrorism of organizers and participants! (Photograph from "Pocho-one Fotography" [facebook.com/pocho1.fotography]):

“S.R.P.D. Harassing & intimidating Andy Lopez young organizers”,
2014-01-14 posted by "WizeVideo" [https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lFKkaxQhd9g]: Santa Rosa police, Gang Task Force and Sonoma County Sheriffs harassing & intimidating Andy Lopez young organizers.

Law enforcement has been carrying a vicious and intimidating series of attacks and harassment against many of those seeking justice for the Lopez family. This is final draft of statement about police intimidation is being released 2014-01-14 by the Andy Lopez Organizing Committee (ALOC).
The JUSTICE COALITION for ANDY LOPEZ in Sonoma County, CA. is charging the Sonoma County Sheriff Dept. (and related law enforcement) of harassment and intimidation of some of the local youth in the Roseland area of Santa Rosa who all happened to be active in this coalition.. This harassment began two days after a very large and outspoken crowd held a protest at the Sonoma County Bd. of Supervisors on Tuesday, January 7, 2014. Among one of the charges alleged was that one of the young men arrested had threatened the son of one of the supervisors. That can easily be proven to be untrue by a simple viewing of the video tape from that meeting. Please review the facts below:

November 26, 2013- mass ticketing of protestors (video)
December 3, 2013- physical assaults by police against several protestors at Ravitch event (video)
December 10, 2013- retaliatory arrests of Ramon Cairo and Jose Luis Godoy (video)
January 8, 2014- Harassment at Ramon Cairo’s court hearing.
January 9, 2014-Harassment by deputies at Jose Godoy’s court hearing.
January 9, 2014- False/retaliatory imprisonment of kids. False/retaliatory arrest of Jose.
January 10, 2014-At midnight, three detectives go to Jose and Ramon’s homes to question them about alleged death threats against David Rabbit at 1-7-14 BOS protest. (video)

Wednesday – January 8 – Harassment at Ramon’s court appearance -
-10+ Sheriff’s deputies there to intimidate Ramon and his supporters.
-While inside the Courtroom, Carla, a Ramon supporter, was repeatedly harassed by sheriff’s deputies. Deputies ordered Carla to "move" her walker out of the handicap area.
-Jose Luis Godoy, another Ramon supporter got up to assist Carla, but was told by Deputy Lupton to sit down. When Jose made a comment about Lupton not assisting Carla, Jose was physically pushed out of the Courtroom and repeatedly pushed by Deputy Lupton as he walked down the courthouse stairs, while several other deputies followed. Outside the security gates Deputy Lupton taunted Jose by calling him a “little kid”(video).

Thursday – January 9 – Harassment at Jose’s court appearance -
-At the Courthouse entrance, 10 law enforcement officials were present (3 courthouse security officers, 3 Sheriff’s deputies and 4 probation officers) (video).
-Prior to entering Mr. Godoy’s hearing, Alicia Roman overheard Deputy Lupton say to another officer, “there he is in the red shirt” referring to Jose. (video- Lupton lapel).
-Inside the courtroom, there were 3 sheriff’s deputies in the front, 2 in the back, and 6 deputies outside the courtroom.
- At the conclusion of Mr. Godoy’s hearing, deputies followed Jose, Andy’s Youth, and other supporters out to the main entrance.
-Next, Mr. Godoy drove up to the Courthouse steps to pick up the kids. Attorney Alicia had returned to the security area to pick up her DL/Bar card and saw Lupton and other deputies observing Jose’s Suburban with its two "Justice for Andy" bumper stickers in the back. (video).
-Deputy Mana called Lisbet out by name and said, "I'll see you later Lisbeth.”

Thursday –1-9-14-Evening - Andy’s Youth detained by deputies at gunpoint, cuffed for 3 hours -
At approximately 5:40 p.m. the kids (ages 13-17) were returning from getting supplies to make signs (for their upcoming Andy’s Youth rummage sale). Jose and the kids had taken their poster boards and markers out of the suburban and were walking toward Lisbet's house when they turned to look back because they sensed a fast approaching vehicle. Upon turning around the kids and Mr. Godoy were blinded by bright lights and ordered by deputies who had their guns and shot-guns drawn (some have said pointed in the direction of the children's heads) to put their hands up and get face-down on the street, the kids fearing for their life immediately complied. Thereafter several dozen more deputies with their guns arrived while a helicopter hovered overhead. The second squad car on the scene was none other than Deputy Lupton who was seen stalking and harassing Jose at the Courthouse that same day and the day before. The parents of some of the children went outside, but with guns pointed at them were warned to stay back. Several neighbors said they had guns pointed at them as well and were warned to stay indoors or they risked being shot. While on the ground the youth pleaded with the deputies to stop choking Mr. Godoy because he was struggling to catch his breath. When the kids asked why the deputies had handcuffed them, they were told "We're looking for a dead body in the car." While still handcuffed, the deputies took the kids photos and told them that they were now on “gang terms”. The 13 year old boy was forced to submit to a breathalyzer. It is also reported that a gun was held to a child's head. In addition, it is reported that one of the young women forced to lie down on her stomach was pregnant, even though the deputies were informed of this.
At about 6:45 p.m. attorney Alicia arrived at the scene and heard a deputy tell one of the parents that, "Jose’s suburban was involved in a brandishing incident with a handgun". When Alicia asked, "Did you find a gun?” the deputy stared at her and moments later said “pardon me”. Alicia repeated her question and the officer said I don’t even know who you are and refused to answer the question. The alleged “gun” was a staple gun that the children intended to use to put up flyers for the rummage sale. Jose was arrested for allegedly brandishing a weapon, plus other bogus charges.
The kids wrists were red and bruised from tight cuffs. The next day they needed medication and ice packs for the pain to their wrists, neck, chest and back.

Friday/Saturday midnight – Jose and Ramon “investigated” by deputies -
At midnight, one day after being falsely arrested for allegedly brandishing a gun, three deputies went to Jose’s house. They said they were there to talk to Jose about alleged death threats made against Supervisor David Rabbit at the January 7, 2014, Board of Supervisors meeting. The same deputies paid a similar visit to Ramon’s house immediately after leaving Mr. Godoy’s house. The investigating deputies were: Detective Jeff Tony, Detective Brandon Cutting, Detective Brandon Austin. Their supervisor is Sergeant Shannon McLavin.

Conclusion: The above incidents were clearly in retaliation for being part of the Andy Lopez protests, including being Ramon and Jose supporters, and because Deputy Lupton was upset over what he himself said was “name calling” by Jose. There is no excuse for pointing guns at children who are carrying markers and poster boards. If Deputy Lupton can’t handle “name calling” he should not be assigned to the protests. “The First Amendment requires that officers and municipalities respond with restraint in the face of verbal challenges to police action...” City of Houston v. Hill (1987) 482 U.S. 451 at pp. 471-472. A properly trained officer is expected to exercise a higher degree of restraint than an average citizen, this Mr. Lupton clearly is unable to do.

Free Ramon Cairo! (Freed 2014-05-9)

Justice for Andy Lopez Cruz! [link]
Free David Douglass! [link]

The Arrest of Ramon Cairo [link], a statement from L@s Autonomous Brown Berets of Sonoma County [link], with the facts surrounding the false charges against Ramon.

Update: Ramon Cairo is Free! The Santa Rosa Police Department could not prove any of it's charges against Ramon, and the court hearing ended in a mistrial! From a May 9th statement by the "Justice Coalition for Andy Lopez":
"Friday morning May 9th at 8:30 am in courtroom #8 in Sonoma County – the DA declined to refile criminal charges against Lopez protest leader Ramon Cairo. The DA’s decision followed three days of deliberations in which the vast majority of jurors found the State’s star witness – a Sergeant on the Santa Rosa Police Department – to be not credible. Caught on the stand mouthing three versions of the alleged assault on his forehead – the jury rejected his tangled web of misstatements and outright lies. The judge was left with no choice but to dismiss the charges and declare Ramon Cairo a free man, upholding the First Amendment rights of Lopez protesters."
Statement from the "Brown Berets De Sonoma County" (2014-05-07), before the verdict was announced: "Today, we wait for the verdict on comrade Ramón's trial(one of our Beret members), from being arrested at the December 10th Andy Lopez march when we went through a Santa Rosa city council meeting (who completely avoided us). We still openly maintain that this [Amerikkkan just-us] system continues to uphold its systemic institutionalized oppression while in advancement of its national interests, and then as usual turn around (and acknowledge us the disenfranchised) and tell us they (the privileged) are completely free of committing injustices because (as the Amerikkkan way is) they where acting 'in their right, in self defence (although a provoked situation) and legally.' In institutionalized oppression, the institution is the tool used for the self preservation of the privileged."
Ramon Cairo writes concerning the trial: "I chose to take on the Amerikkkan JustUs System, because
1) I am not guilty of said allegations. I have a Right (not 'privilege') to voice my Political Dissent and Opposing Views concerning how my local government is run, and its Incompetent Leadership and
2) All 5 Officers who testified against me Outright Lied, Slandered My Name, and work for an entity that has proactively and systematically murdered Our Gente, and brought this Genocidal Attitude to Our Communities. The same Attitudes that have led to hundreds of Our People to be Slaughtered in Our Streets, while these Murderers with Badges continue to Kill Us with Impunity.
Fuck That! This Shit Stops Now, y Ya Basta! NO JUSTICE, NO PEACE. FUCK ALL POLICE
Ramon Cairo, with daughter Mayra Canto, awaiting the court verdict, May 6th.

According to attorney John Melrod, character witness for Ramon Cairo during the trial, the star police witness for the prosecution, a Sergeant on the Santa Rosa Police Department, had provided testimony describing THREE different versions of the events leading to Ramon Cairo's arrest. During the trial, the jury was told that the protesters were allegedly acting like a mob, alluding to potentially violent actions which could have erupted, all under the direction of Ramon Cairo. Video evidence showed, however, that the protesters were not being violent, and that Ramon Cairo was being a disciplined coordinator of the march and rally. After the conclusion of the trial,a juror related to John Melrod that the evident contradiction between the police testimony and the video footage was what lead to the hung jury, in favor of acquitting Ramon Cairo of all charges.

"Trial of Lopez Protestor Ramon Cairo to Conclude in Santa Rosa Monday Morning"
2014-05-03 from "Justice Coalition for Andy Lopez":
After two days of often riveting testimony by Santa Rosa police officers, the trial of Lopez protestor Ramon Cairo will wrap up and go to the jury on Monday afternoon. The trial will reconvene in Courtroom #8 at 1:30 with the final cross examination of Sgt. Conner, one of the arresting officers who claims to have been assaulted as police blocked the entrance to the Santa Rosa City Council on December 10, 2013.
150 – 200 demonstrators, many of them young people affiliated with Andy’s Youth, attempted to enter the City Council meeting carrying 56 white crosses memorializing individuals who died in Sonoma County since 2000 in police-involved incidents. 56 young people carrying crosses with the names of the deceased on them led the silent crowd. When the protestors reached the entrance to the City Hall Chambers, a wall of Santa Rosa police officers claiming they couldn’t enter while carrying the crosses blocked their entry.
A verbal exchange ensued in which the protestors asserted their Constitutional rights to assembly and free speech guaranteed them entry into the chambers. In the course of that exchange Sgt. Conner, who will be testifying at 1:30 claims to have suffered an approximately 1 inch wound across his forehead. As a consequence, one of the protest leaders, Ramon Cairo, was later wrestled to the ground and arrested for felony assault.
After viewing video of the encounter, a Sonoma County judge reduced the felony charge to a misdemeanor for lack of sufficient evidence to justify a felony charge. Regardless, Mr. Cairo faces the possibility of a year in jail if the jury finds him guilty.  To see this video click on link below.
After Sgt. Conner, Defense Attorney Izaak Schwaeger, will call Jonathan Melrod, Justice Coalition for Andy Lopez activist and Sebastopol attorney to the stand to rebut the testimony of the 5 officers so far called to testify by the Prosecution.

"Footage: 2013 Protest of Andy Lopez Shooting at Santa Rosa City Council"
2014-05-01 from "Press Democrat" monopolist newspaper [https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=38KIrBPFr9k]: Video taken by a witness to a Dec. 10, 2013, protest at Santa Rosa City Hall over the fatal shooting of Andy Lopez by a Sonoma County sheriff's deputy. The video was scheduled to be introduced as evidence in the trial of protester Ramon Cairo.

"Cops arrest anti-police brutality protesters in Santa Rosa; Youth demand justice for Andy Lopez, and end to police killings"
2013-12-18  text from "Liberation News", photos 2013-12-10 from "Justice Coalition for Andy Lopez" [http://www.answercoalition.org/national/news/cops-arrest-protesters-andy-lopez.html]:
Update: As this article was being prepared for posting on Dec. 16, Ramon Cairo’s bail was increased to $45,000, and an additional charge was added.
Ramon Cairo (with bullhorn) leading the way to Santa Rosa city hall -

Protesters with crosses waiting to get into Santa Rosa City Hall -

Inside the Santa Rosa City Council meeting, after half the council members had fled -

On Oct. 22, in Santa Rosa, Calif., Sonoma County Deputy Sheriff Erich Gelhaus screamed at 13-year-old Andy Lopez, telling him to drop his “weapon,” a toy gun. Within five seconds Gelhaus shot seven bullets into Lopez, killing him. Then, Gelhaus handcuffed the boy's body and evacuated the scene rather than get medical attention for Lopez. All of this is acknowledged by both the Sonoma County Sheriff's Department and the Santa Rosa Police Department.
“Right now, there's nothing screaming at us that [Gelhaus] violated any policy,” was the candid admission of Assistant Sheriff Lorenzo Dueñas, as he announced, on Dec. 6, that Gelhaus would return to work. Duenas's assessment was based on a report on a supposedly ongoing investigation by the SRPD. Included in the report was a comparison of Lopez's toy gun with a real AK-47 to “prove” to the public how much they look alike. Gelhaus did what law enforcement in this country is supposed to do: he terrorized a working class community of color.
In response to Duenas's announcement, a new demonstration was called for Dec. 10 by the Justice Coalition for Andy Lopez. This coalition has been leading the youth of Santa Rosa in weekly demonstrations that have forced the SRPD to release Gelhaus's name and have pressured the City Counsel to embrace a plan to turn the vacant lot in which Lopez died into a city park named after him. On Dec. 10, people gathered outside the Santa Rosa City Council building to demand they be heard. The City Council has been under a de facto gag order by the City Manager and City Attorney not to discuss Lopez's killing since it occurred.
Justice Coalition member Ramon Cairo had suggested that the protesters carry 57 crosses, representing each victim of Sonoma County law enforcement since 2000. Each cross had a note on it listing the name of the victim it represented and a short description of the circumstances of that person's death. As the protesters approached the City Council building with the crosses, SRPD surrounded the building and started pushing and menacing the marchers, but protesters from the Justice Coalition for Andy Lopez and the ANSWER Coalition (Act Now to Stop War and End Racism) were able to enter the buliding.

Police arrest protest organizer -
As the protesters reached the City Council, about half of the city's elected representatives fled. The other half stayed and expressed their condolences for Lopez's death and their understanding of the protesters' concerns. As the crowd peacefully marched out of the building, the Santa Rosa cops again blocked the doors and then tackled Cairo. Outraged, the crowd again forced their way past the cops, into the building, chanting, “Let him go!” as the cops roughed up Cairo, who was later taken away.
The entire crowd then marched over a mile-and-a-half to the Santa Rosa police station to support Cairo. The people were greeted by two units of riot cops sporting grenade launchers and growling dogs. The cops declared the protest an “unlawful assembly,” a veiled threat of brutality against the public. Much of the crowd, understanding the danger posed by the cops, dispersed. But some protesters marched to the Sheriff's department, followed by cops. The bullying tactics of the SRPD became ever more violent. The final group of protesters decided on a tactical retreat, but this did not stop the police from randomly arresting Jose Godoy as he was driving away from the protest.
The struggle for justice for Andy Lopez will continue. Jailhouse for Gelhaus!

"2 Arrested In Protests Over Fatal Shooting Of Santa Rosa Teen"
2013-12-10 by Chris Filippi from "KCBS / KPIX 5" [http://sanfrancisco.cbslocal.com/2013/12/10/santa-rosa-police-clash-with-andy-lopez-marchers-arrests-made/]:
Protesters upset over the fatal shooting of Andy Lopez held up crosses during a protest at Santa Rosa City Hall on December 10, 2013. (Photo from CBS)

SANTA ROSA — Protesters rallying against a Sonoma County sheriff’s deputy who fatally shot a 13-year-old boy clashed with police in riot gear in front of Santa Rosa City Hall Tuesday evening.
Two people were arrested after marched gathered to protest the deputy’s return to work this week.
Sheriff’s Deputy Erick Gelhaus shot and killed Andy Lopez, who was carrying a replica gun, in late October. The deputy claimed that he thought the gun was an assault rifle.
The protest began with a group of around 100 protesters gathered in front of City Hall, some carrying white crosses that stood about two to three-feet high. The crosses were said to represent the victims of killings at the hands of Sonoma County law enforcement since the year 2000.
When the protesters attempted to enter the scheduled city council meeting, they were met by police and were told they couldn’t enter the building with their crosses because they did not conform to city code.
“They said we still couldn’t come in and started pushing the crowd. And as they started pushing these guys, I snuck around the side and the cop stomped on my foot as I was getting past him,” said Stacy Sycheff, a protester.
A shoving match with police ensued when protesters refused to relent. One demonstrator allegedly hit a police officer in the head with a wooden signpost and another allegedly hit an officer in the face. The two officers had minor injuries.
A recess was called at the City Council meeting and the protesters were allowed to enter. Police arrested a protester there on suspicion of hitting the officer with a signpost. He was identified as Ramon Cairo of Santa Rosa and was booked into Sonoma County Jail on suspicion of assaulting a police officer, police said.
Demonstrators then began to march on Sonoma Avenue, stopping traffic, en route to the police department where they demanded the release of the man arrested.
Deputies made one arrest for suspicion of violation of probation and obstructing a police officer. That person was identified by the sheriff’s office as Jose Godoy, 24, of Santa Rosa. He was stopped leaving the scene in a vehicle and booked into jail, the sheriff’s office said.
Gelhaus, the sheriff’s deputy in question, is not on patrol and is instead working a desk job for the time being. This after receiving paid-administrative leave. Lopez was shot multiple times by Gelhaus after being stopped by police who thought his Airsoft rifle was an AK-47.
Protesters said they want the deputy arrested, as well as an outside investigation into the incident that claimed Lopez’s life.
“We can’t have the police investigating the police and the sheriff investigating the sheriff. We need an outside professional investigation team to get the root of the matter,” protester Norma Baumsteiger told KPIX 5.
Marchers eventually ended up at the Sonoma County sheriff’s office. The protest ended peacefully Tuesday night with no further incidents reported.

“Calif. city finds some success against gang problem”
2008-07-28 by Sandra Yi [http://www.ksl.com/?nid=148&sid=3880572]:
[ … ] Ramon Cairo, 25, is a success story. Raised by drug dealers and gang members, Cairo was 10 years old when he was initiated into a gang. "I got jumped in right in that park, as a matter of fact," he said. Cairo has been in and out of jail and prison for half his life. He took us to his old neighborhood. "All the dope that was sold on these corners came from me," he told us.
Three years ago, Cairo had had enough. With help from a city-sponsored program, Cairo got an education and now works as a plumber. "I just felt like my whole life had been drained from me. I wanted to be a dad. I wanted to take my little girl to the park and do normal things. You know what I mean?" he said. [ … ]