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Feather River Bulletin
Quincy, California
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October 22, 2014     Feather River Bulletin
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October 22, 2014
 

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lOB Wednesday, Oct. 22, 2014 Bulletin, Record, Progressive, Reporter. EDITORIAL AND OPINION EDITORIAL SPI deserves a fu!l refund for Moonlight Fire settlement Sierra Pacific Industries has insisted from the beginning that it played no role in igniting the devastating Moonlight Fire in 2007. Two weeks ago, the company took the next step in an attempt to clear its name and get some more of its money back. We cried foul in 2012 when SPI was forced to hand over $55 million in cash and 22,500 acres of prime timberland to the federal government. Even if the family-owned timber company was responsible for starting the Moonlight Fire, the penalty was beyond excessive. And it could have been even worse -- the government was seeking more than $700 million. Some said it was the result of a growing bounty hunter mentality by prosecutors and the courts. It was the largest settlement of its kind in U.S. history. But SPI was vindicated in February. When the state tried to sue the company for $8 million it spent fighting the fire, the judge in the case heard the evidence and was shocked by what he found. He found systematic fraud and corruption by the government's investigators. He was also flabbergasted that the government's lawyers tried to build a case around the false information. "The misconduct in this case is so pervasive that it would serve no purpose for the Court to even attempt to recite it all here," wrote Superior Court Judge Leslie C. Nichols. Nichols said the case wasn't even worthy of a jury trial. The judge ruled the sttte's case was so phony he ordered Cal Fire to pay SPI $25 million for wasting everyone's time. According to information provided by SPI's lawyers, two of the federal government's own attorneys knew the case against SPI was a lie. They were reportedly so disgusted by the corrupt investigation that they resigned. They also tried to tell SPI what was going on. They wanted to set the record straight despite pressure from other lawyers on the government's team. "In my entire career, yes, my entire career I have never seen anything like this. Never," one of the attQ!:ne-ys is reported to have said. But it didn't matter. In 2012 a federal judge, based on information in the shady investigation, told SPI it could be held liable for the fire even if the government couldn't prove it started it. SPI was strong-armed into agreeing to pay the massive settlement. But today, armed with the evidence Judge Nichols cited in February, SPI is fighting back. We hope the company, which is a vital contributor to the Plumas County economy, gets the vindication and refund it deserves. Editorials are written by members of the ed.itorial board and should be considered the opinion of the newspaper. The board consists of the publisher, managing editor and the appropriate staff writers. , ;G. - " . Fea bhshmg 00wspaper For breaking news, go to plumasnews.com Michael C. Taborski .............. Publisher Keri B. Taborski .... Legal Advertising Dept. Dan McDonald .......... Managing Editor Jenny Lee .................. Photo Editor Ingrid Burke.... ............. Copy Editor Staff writers: Miriam Cody Michael Condon Makenzie Davis Ruth Ellis Will Farris Susan Cort Johnson Greg Knight Debra Moore Maddie Musante Ann Powers M. Kate West Aura Whittaker Sam Williams" James Wilson Feather River Bulletin (530) 283-0800 Portola Repo'rter (530) 832-4646 Lassen County Times (530) 257-5321 Indian Valley Record (530) 284-7800 Chester Progressive (530) 258-3115 Westwood PinePress {530) 256-2277 Member, Pdnted on California Newspaper recycled paper PubliCtem . How to stay healthy in a sick world I'm one of those people who says, "I hardly ever get sick." I take expensive, non-GMO vitamins and potassium iodide to Protect against radiation poisoning from Fukushima. Recently I started taking colloidal silver because it's supposed to increase autoimmune function against infectious disease. It can aid in the prevention of Ebola, according to my supplement guru (aka, my boyfriend's dad). Ebola is scary. And gross. And the reality is, I probably won't catch it unless I run around touching infected cadavers or eating monkey brains a la Indiana Jones. Still, the recent outbreak of the Ebola virus in Africa has killed over 4,000 people in Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea. Then, just a few weeks ago, the First Ebola patient died on U.S. soft. His name was Eric Duncan. He had been in Liberia, and was helping a young victim of Ebola while she died, unable to get medical care, from the disease. He returned to Texas symptom free Sept. 19, but started experiencing sickness and went to the hospital. They sent him home. Then he got even sicker, went back to the hospital, and died from the virus. Last week, a Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital nurse who came in contact with Duncan became the second case of Ebola contracted in the U.S. The first was another nurse at the same hospital in Dallas. The 2014 Ebola epidemic is the largest in recorded history, and the World Health MY TURN MIRIAM S. CODY Staff Writer mcody@plumasnews.com Organization reported there could be more than 10,000 new cases each week, as the virus spreads. Meanwhile, worldwide anxiety escalates. "It may get worse before it gets better," said Dallas Mayor Mike Rawlings. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has issued a warning level 3 travel notice for U.S. citizens to avoid nonessential travel to Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone. Don't panic From one angle, I can see this getting pretty crazy. I can imagine people panicking and resources depleting to handle a crisis like an Ebola epidemic in our country. It's possible I've watched a little too much of "The Walking Dead," because I get these images in my head of a zombie takeover... This week's special days is completed, eliminating the need for the Pony Express. The First telegraph was sent from San Francisco to President Abraham Lincoln in Washington, D.C. 1929 -- Today was "Black Thursday," the crash of the New York Stock Exchange. 1931 -- The George Washington Bridge, a double decked suspension bridge spanning the Hudson River and connecting New York and New Jersey, opens. 1945 -- The United Nations is founded in San Francisco. 2003 -- The transatlantic super sonic transport (SST), the Concorde makes its last commercial flight. : .... October 25 1881 -- Artist Pablo Picasso is born in Spain. NOT JUST AN ORDINARY ' DAY COMPILED BY KERI TABORSKI Not just an ordinary day....a sampling of weekly notable special days and facts throughout the year. 1964 -- The feature Film "Mary Poppins" remains the number one movie release for nine weeks following its August opening in U.S. theaters. 1964 -- The Rolling Stones make their first appearance on The Ed Sullivan Show. The next day Mr. Sullivan insists they will never be invited back. But really, I think as long as people take the proper precautions to protect themselves, most of us will go untouched in ' the U.S. Even if the conspiracies are true (and we'll get to that in a minute), it's not the easiest bug in the world to catch. The incubation period of Ebola can be anywhere from two to 21 days. The virus can travel in the blood to almost any part of the body. But you must come in direct contact with infected bodily fluids to contract Ebola. So, wash your hands frequently and use an alcohol-based sanitizer when washing is not an option. Avoid bodily fluids of other : people, especially those who are sick. Do : not touch the body of someone who has died from Ebola. If there's any possibility of contact and you have a fever, go to the doctor. I think I can handle that. We have a nice haven here in the Sierra. We are a long way a from Dallas, and until U.S. cases rise to an unmanageable number, which hopefully will not happen, we seem pretty safe to me. October 22 1883 -- The Metropolitan Opera House in New York City officially opens. 1966 -- The Supremes became the first all-female music group to attain a number one selling album, for their album "The Supremes A-Go-Go." October 23 1915-- Some 30,000 women marched on Fifth Avenue in New York City demand'.mg the right to vote. 1958 -- "The Smurfs," a fictional race of blue dwarves, later popularized in America in a Hanna-Barbera animated cartoon series, appear for the First time in a Belgian comics magazine. October 24 1861 -- The first transcontinental telegraph line across the United States Perspectives Although President Obama has cancelled travel plans to meet with his cabinet on the Ebola outbreak, some Americans are highly suspicious of his intentions. Conspiracy theories are adding up as the virus makes its way into America, including theories that Obama has intentionally let the disease into the country, according to skeptic Phyllis Schlafly. She says, "He wants us to be just like everybody else, and if Africa is suffering from Ebola, we ought to join the group and be suffering from it, too." Rush Limbaugh has said Obama welcomed the disease here as some form of . payback for slavery. Singer Chris Brown ' fmgered the outbreak as a population control plot, launching a conspiracy theory through his Twitter account. Liberian-born U.S. professor Cyril Broderick claims the U.S. Department of Defense is responsible for the outbreaks. In an article published in The Daily Observer, a major Liberian newspaper, Broderick discussed "stories of the U.S. Dept. of Defense funding Ebola trials on humans, trials which started just weeks before the Ebola outbreak in Guinea and Sierra Leone." I don't know who told him these stories, and this may just be a bunch of bull, but I think conspiracy theories deserve to be looked at. This is because I don't like to limit my perspective on world issues to the , ififormati6n thrown at me' hhough " "*' ; ' mainstream media. Unfortunately, theories like these can blur the nation's priorities, which right now ought to be controlling and preventing the virus, regardless of where it came from. Maybe Obama and his cabinet will come up with something brilliant... Ultimately, it's up to you whether you trust your government, fly to Sierra Leone or engage in cannibalistic rituals (oh, yes, and some say cannibalism is a factor in the spread of the disease). My advice is to make - sure you keep your hands clean and don't ' touch anything I wouldn't touch. REMEMBER WHEN KERI TABORSKI Historian 75 YEARS AGO ..... 1939 The Johnsville Hotel was sold last week by Mrs. Sam Palovich to John Pezzola, a JohnsviUe mining man. Sierra Valley Grange is the largest Grange in California, with 275 members, it was announced at the annual Grange convention held in Chico last week. 50 YEARS AGO ..... 1964 The last half of our bound volumes in our archives for the year 1964 (July through December) is missing and those historical items are not available to include in this Remember When column. 25 YEARS AGO ..... 1989 After a year without a Plumas County Undersheriff, the Plumas County Sheriff's Office promoted former Plumas County detective Walter Nelsen to the rank of Undersheriff. The last Undersheriff, Steve Wright, resigned and retired in 1988. 10 YEARS AGO....2004 Former Plumas County Sheriff Dick MacKenzie, 70, died Monday. He became a deputy with the Plumas County Sherit's Department in 1971 and served as Sheriff 1985-1991. Employees of Willits Motors in Quincy toasted the car dealership owners and Indian Valley residents Barbara and Rqsty Willits on their retirement from the dealership this week. Who says you can't go back home again? i A long time ago, in a valley not so far away, a young man grew up watching the Greenville Indians play football every Friday night during the fall sports season. That young man, a sixth-grader, longed for the day when he could don the Orange and Black of the GHS team and stomp the heck out of some competitors from around Northern California. In case you haven't guessed already, that young man was me. Sadly, I only was able to don the pads and uniform of the Indians for one year, in 1989, before my family uprooted and moved to Siskiyou County and eventually Seattle, Washington, where I graduated from high school. It was in that fmal year in Greenville, however, that my heart was irrevocably and eternally tied to Indian Valley in particular and Plumas County in general. Going forward into my life, I would fred myself always judging any nearby forest against the tallest of pines that fill the mountainsides in this most Godly of country. Returning briefly a decade ago to study at Feather River College, it was there, under the tutelage of former athletic director Paul Thein and women's basketball coach Laurel Wartluft, that I learned to love sports for more than just maintaining a win-loss record. Thanks to them, and the cadre of coaches from that era, I learned to write about it. Now, as 2014 wanes into the winter months, I have found myself back in the MY TURN Sports Writer gknight@lassennews.com bosom of what can be called home. A place where, beyond sports and the student-athletes who put their heart and soul into the game, there are people who truly love and care for one another. In 1940, a posthumously published novel by Thomas Wolfe titled "You Can't Go Home Again" told the story of a man who writes a book about his small hometown. The main character finds success in his writing despite the ire of the local residents who feel that he got the story wrong. In the book, which I try to read at least once every few years if only to remind me of the road less traveled through Greenville, my adopted hometown, there is a quote that sticks with me to this day. "But why had he always felt so strongly the magnetic pull of home, why had he thought so much about it and remembered it with such blazing accuracy, if it did not matter, and if this little town, and the immortal hills around it, was not the only home he had on earth? He did not know. All that he knew was that the years flow by like water, and that one day men come home again." I held onto that passage like a safety blanket, always hoping to return home and live in the place where I experienced my first kiss, earned my First Class rank in the Boy Scouts of America, rode motorcycles on the red dirt roads that weave through the county and even hopped a train near Okie Flats before hopping off and nearly dying at Old Haun Road at East Lake Almanor. In essence, this place is where the essence of my life began. Plumas County is where I learned about love, life, God, country and football. Because of that, I guess coming home can really happen. I didn't have to click my heels three times or pray too hard about it. It is simply, to me, a case of the right place, the right job and the right time and I truly look forward to bringing you high school sports coverage across the county andin covering the FRC Golden Eagles. Oh, and though I can never (allegedly) show favoritism to any one team when covering the preps of Quincy, Greenville, Chester and Portola, this might be my one chance to say "Go Indians." Coming home came true for me -- and I have never been happier in my entire life to be somewhere on this mortal coil. 1 I !