Home > 2nd Congressional District California, elections > Top Huffman donors defend corporate pollutors

Top Huffman donors defend corporate pollutors

The AVA takes a look at the big money — and bad actors — behind leading Congressional candidate Jared Huffman’s campaign for California’s newly formed second district. Huffman led recent polls among the pool of mostly Democratic candidates.

Like most candidates for Congress, Jared Huffman’s donor base reflects the realities of a decades-long class war waged by the top 1-5% against the bottom half of America. Huffman’s biggest and most well-organized donors are wealthy Marin County lawyers, real estate investors, bankers, and executives of major corporations. Some of them are liberals, but many are conservatives. Most of the liberals seem to make their money by representing the interests of conservative corporations.

Take Stephen Lewis for example. Lewis is one of Huffman’s largest individual donors, having given the Assemblyman $2,500 for his congressional campaign. His wife Mimi Lewis also gave Huffman’s committee $1,000. A resident of Nicasio in Marin County, Lewis is a partner in the Barg Coffin Lewis & Trapp law firm (BCLT). Although Huffman is proud of his career as an environmentalist lawyer, his donor from BCLT specializes in defending corporate polluters.

Throughout his career Lewis has defended large oil and pesticide manufacturers, military contractors, and agribusiness companies sued by community groups and workers who have alleged the companies polluted ground water and soil, and exposed workers to deadly chemicals.

One of the most famous cases Lewis worked on was Delgado v. Shell Oil, a suit filed by banana plantation workers in Costa Rica, Panama and Nicaragua against Shell Oil, Occidental Chemical, Standard Fruit, Del Monte Fruit, Dole Fresh Fruit, and other transnational corporations that had exposed employees to dibromochloropropane (DBPC). DBPC is a pesticide banned in the US since 1977. DBPC causes liver and kidney damage, infertility in men, and is suspected of causing breast cancer in women.

Stephen Lewis defended the Occidental Chemical Corp., the California-based manufacturer of DBPC products like “Nemagon” that were used in these banana plantations. Now he’s giving money to ensure Huffman wins a seat in Congress. Can Huffman take their money today and vote against them tomorrow?

The Fisher family, owners of Humboldt Redwood Company and other timber interests in the district, have contributed $10,000 so far.

More: Huffman’s Money

  1. humboldturtle
    December 9, 2011 at 7:28 am

    I wish we had a local candidate for congress. Marin ain’t Humboldt.

  2. Plain Jane
    December 9, 2011 at 7:33 am

    Neither is Saint Helena, Turtle. I’m veering more and more toward Solomon. Huffman doesn’t even show up on my GPS. He’s just another pol bought by predators before he even takes office.

  3. Dan
    December 9, 2011 at 7:42 am

    “I wish we had a local candidate for congress.” 7:28

    If Susan Adams wins she plans to
    split her time living both in Humboldt and Marin.

  4. Plain Jane
    December 9, 2011 at 7:53 am

    How can she afford to maintain 3 homes on a congressional salary, Dan?

  5. Humboldt Young Dem
    December 9, 2011 at 8:13 am

    Jared has a record of protecting the environment and fighting to keep our waters and air clean. Obviously any donation from a colleague hasn’t effected the laws that he is trying to get passed.

  6. Dan
    December 9, 2011 at 8:25 am

    Jane, three homes? I know not of that.
    What she told me was that her brother also lives up
    this way and her plans were to split
    her time between north and south residences,
    in order to properly represent the vast area.

  7. Eureka Pride
    December 9, 2011 at 8:48 am

    You won’t see Susan Adams taking money from corporate polluters, or any other compromised interests. She’s for real. She is an unpretentious true leader. While Solomon is also a good choice, the difference between him and Adams is that Adams has held elected office (she is chair of the Marin Board of Supes) and knows how to get things done in that capacity, how to build electoral coalitions. Looks at how she took on the cement plant in Marin on behalf of the neighborhood nearby that was sick and tired of breathing the plant’s air pollution. It spurred the plant to action to finally come into compliance with air pollution laws.

    Susan Adams for the 2nd!

  8. Plain Jane
    December 9, 2011 at 8:52 am

    So she’ll be visiting Humboldt on her visits to her district when she isn’t living in DC. It seems a little odd to call a brother’s home one of her residences, but it isn’t important. I was just curious how she could support 3 homes when so many congress members have to struggle to maintain the 2 that are required unless they are independently wealthy.

  9. December 9, 2011 at 8:52 am


  10. Dan
    December 9, 2011 at 9:03 am

    J, Susan Adams is very approachable. If you have concerns about how she would pull-off her new charge, ask her.
    I did. She now has my vote. I hope she gets yours.

  11. High Finance
    December 9, 2011 at 9:06 am

    What garbage. This is class warfare at its worst appealing to class envy and the worst of humans.

    “… Huffman’s donor base reflects the realities of a decades-long class war waged by the top 1-5% against the bottom half of America.”

    The only class war being “waged” is by the Democrat party & liberals against the wealthy. The goal being more votes for the Dems from people who are consumed with envy & hate and more support for increasing taxes instead of cutting spending.

  12. Mitch
    December 9, 2011 at 9:11 am

    Personally, HiFi, I’m all for cutting government spending. I’d eliminate all federal subsidies to corporations with more than 1,000 employees — they should be large enough to compete without subsidy. I’d also cut military spending by at least half. I’d outlaw aid to banks.

    That would save more taxpayer money than any number of further cuts to the social safety net America constructed over thirty years and dismantled over the subsequent thirty years.

    So please don’t say we’re not for cutting spending. We’d just like to start cutting at the top.

  13. Plain Jane
    December 9, 2011 at 9:13 am

    I really like Norm Solomon but have nothing against Adams either, still evaluating. If Huffman wins the primary, I’ll vote for him in the general; but I’d much prefer a progressive who hasn’t taken a ton of tainted money. I understand how difficult that is when your opponents are essentially taking bribes for favors and access, a far more effective way to raise money than asking for donations while giving nothing in return but a promise of honest governance.

  14. Concerned
    December 9, 2011 at 9:16 am

    While Susan Adams is approachable, she sure is not supported by her Board of Supervisors. Why has every last one of them endorsed Jared Huffman? Not a single co-worker has endorsed Susan Adams. Why has she received no major endorsement? I have continually heard the same stories out of Susan-and I’m tired of hearing them. l like the lady, but not for a congressional seat.

  15. Anonymous
    December 9, 2011 at 9:19 am

    If Norm Solomon is elected, he will be completely useless once in office. After years of bashing all politicians and all media, how will he now be able to get these same people he has demonized to join him in policy? People don’t forget. A vote for Solomon is a vote against protecting the North Coast.

  16. Anonymous
    December 9, 2011 at 9:21 am

    Looks like Richard Salzman is playing nasty politics again! Must be a planted article from Susan Adam’s Humboldt hire, Richard Salzman!

  17. Plain Jane
    December 9, 2011 at 9:22 am

    Right HiFi, and donating millions to politicians to tilt the table to your benefit while funding a huge media echo chamber to demonize anyone who calls attention to the fact that everything is sliding off the table into your lap is just business as usual. You are economic bullies who have been assaulting the working classes for decades. Now that we start fighting back, it’s warfare and not just bully assaults.

  18. Mitch
    December 9, 2011 at 9:24 am

    It’s wonderful to have intelligent outsiders pointing out the flaws in our systems; Norm Solomon is great at that, and has contributed an enormous amount in that way. But for Congress these days, I think you need someone who is good at negotiating the best deal possible with people who completely disagree with you. That calls for at least a little demonstrated success as an insider.

    When Solomon was interviewed on KHUM, his response to a question about the vote to go to war was that there was only one vote against and, if he’d been in Congress, there would have been two votes against. That would have made many of us, including me, feel better, and we would have been rightfully proud to have our representative opposing a pointless war, but what would it have actually changed? It’s the mindset of a principled outsider.

    Being in Congress is a job like any other — you have to have the right fit for the job, not just the right opinions.

  19. Plain Jane
    December 9, 2011 at 9:28 am

    Sounds like 9:19 is an advocate of business as usual, don’t make waves, go along to get along brand of politics. How’s that working out?

  20. Reality Check
    December 9, 2011 at 9:29 am

    Well said, Mitch.

  21. Anonymous
    December 9, 2011 at 9:32 am

    Plain Jane-sounds like your advocating for a candidate who will get nothing done-is that what you are supporting-because we have a lot of that in government right now. I’m not advocating for business as usual, I’m advocating that we choose a candidate that does not have a congress filled with enemies. I know you are used to making enemies and making waves on the blogs-how’s that working out?

  22. Mitch
    December 9, 2011 at 9:39 am


    Spell with me. M A C H I N E P O L I T I C S.

    See? It’s not that hard to figure out.

  23. Anonymous
    December 9, 2011 at 9:42 am

    Interesting article-but, after researching Huffman a bit, I’m finding that he is receiving a lot of environmental endorsements. I don’t like corporate donations, but, it doesn’t look like it has changed Huffman’s voting pattern.

  24. Plain Jane
    December 9, 2011 at 9:43 am

    Well, while I can’t take credit, if you were to look back through the archives I think you’d see that my economic views which were considered far left have become mainstream while the “trickle down” advocated by conservatives has been thoroughly disgraced. My decades long views on the negative consequences of corporate person hood, their manipulation of our elections and control of our government which were originally considered far left are now a majority view. Electing candidates just like the ones who are representing their campaign donors rather than their constituents may get things done, but not things that their constituents want. The problem isn’t electing people with a passion for representing the best interests of their constituents. It’s not getting rid of the ones who won’t. Haven’t you noticed?

  25. Concerned
    December 9, 2011 at 9:45 am

    I understand the concept, Mitch. It’s unfortunate that every last supervisor is playing their part in the machine, isn’t it?

  26. December 9, 2011 at 10:04 am

    It’s unfortunate that every last supervisor is playing their part in the machine, isn’t it?.

    Indeed. Especially since this is only a primary election we’re talking about. Really tacky, imo, especially when Mike Thompson was one of the first to jump on the bandwagon.

    I thought it was a class act (or non- act?) some years ago when then- state assemblybabe, Virginia Strom- Martin refused to endorse any of the Democratic candidates in the primary for her seat.

  27. longwind
    December 9, 2011 at 10:04 am

    Huffman’s career and support aren’t hard to understand. He was a career lawyer for the Natural Resources Defense Council, a group of ‘hardball’ professional environmentalists who defend, above all, quarterly dividend increases. Think Al Gore. Rethink Barack Obama.

    Wait a minute, you may protest, we can’t have a healthy world *and* endlessly rising dividends. So don’t vote for Huffman. The problem with professional environmentalists is that they are, above all, professional.

  28. Mitch
    December 9, 2011 at 10:05 am

    “I understand the concept, Mitch. It’s unfortunate that every last supervisor is playing their part in the machine, isn’t it?”

    Wouldn’t be much of a machine if the cogs didn’t all cooperate.

  29. Mitch
    December 9, 2011 at 10:08 am

    Why “assemblybabe,” Fred? To alienate us?

  30. Anonymous
    December 9, 2011 at 10:11 am

    Oh wait, Fred Mangels ways in yet again-and he’s decided that he’s the one who should judge class! Get out from under your rock Fred, and re-engage with the rest of society. Mike Thompson has been a class act for our community, and smearing him on this blog shows your own class level.
    Wah-wah Fred

  31. Humboldt Young Dem
    December 9, 2011 at 10:15 am

    Longwind were do you come up with this shit?
    The NRDC is a non-profit. Who do you think they are paying dividends to? They don’t have share holders.

    And if someone tries to support themselves while also protecting the environment they lose all credibility? Or are you against anyone that is a professional like doctors, lawyers, accountants and journalists?

  32. December 9, 2011 at 10:24 am

    smearing him on this blog shows your own class level.

    Saying I thought something he did was tacky is smearing him? Whatever.

  33. December 9, 2011 at 10:25 am

    What are the positions of the candidates on the Occupy Movement? Do Solomon or Adams support Occupy?

    have a peaceful day,

  34. Anonymous
    December 9, 2011 at 10:37 am

    Mitch, electing the “right” people for the job has worked really well for the the U.S. and world population hasn’t it?
    Tell that to the people who are in foreclosure because of bank fraud. Tell that to the people who file bankruptcy because they can’t pay exorbitant medical bills. Tell that to the people in Africa as their continent turns into a desert because of climate change. Tell that to farmers affected by subsidies to industrial farming and Monsanto. Tell that to families working 3 jobs to keep a roof over their heads. Tell that to the people being killed by our drones. I could go on forever but some people will never get it. I’m talking about the people who will continue to think voting is the apex of political action and when offered evil they shrug and vote for evil.
    Our government is becoming the bane of the world. We are our government.

  35. Mark
    December 9, 2011 at 10:43 am

    For anyone who cares more about results then rumors, Huffman’s record is clear. In fact, he is the only candidate that has a legislative record that we can look at. Huffman has passed countless environmental laws, including a law to preventing offshore drilling. He also has the endorsement of every environmental group that has endorsed thus far.

    We should be focused on the issues and not on smear campaigns that try to tear down the front runner. On the issues, where Huffman stands can be looked at by the votes he has taken and bills he has written. I am a progressive democrat and he has my vote.

  36. longwind
    December 9, 2011 at 10:50 am

    Humboldt Young Dem, you’re too young to know the lessons of the decades when we had an active grassroots environmental movement. Grassroots means unpaid. Active means large and influential.

    Professional means paid. Paid means you’re working for your employers. The NRDC board is mostly wealthy, and represents the interests of wealthy liberals like Al Gore and Robert Kennedy Jr. They want to save the world without changing how their families made their money. Here’s Naomi Klein’s analysis of the problem:


    Also see her original article in the Nation.

    The money quote: “seriously confronting the warming of our planet would essentially spell the end for free-market capitalism.” And that’s not what donors are paying for.

    Thanks for asking!

  37. Mitch
    December 9, 2011 at 10:52 am


    I think you’re missing my point.

    I don’t think the system is working. I don’t think it makes sense to vote for “evil.” I don’t think voting is the apex of political action.

    I do think people in Congress need to be skilled at compromise and negotiation.

    I think our problem is systemic, not a result of particularly bad people in important places. In some ways, the systemic problem is the CAUSE of particularly bad people in important places.

    We are in complete agreement that we are our government. How can we work together to make ourselves (and thereby our government) better?

  38. Apologist Not
    December 9, 2011 at 1:17 pm

    Mitch 9:24: “I think you need someone who is good at negotiating the best deal possible with people who completely disagree with you”.

    Mitch 10:05 am:

    “Wouldn’t be much of a machine if the cogs didn’t all cooperate”.

    This reads a little schizophrenic to me.

    Republicans have little use of compromise and it has worked very well for them for a long time. Our side’s compromising tradition has continued wars, bailouts, public divestment, tax havens, deregulation, and outsourcing, long after we “won”.

    To answer Highboltage, Solomon wears a “99%” pin.

    Having read Solomon’s material and followed his career for 30 years, he is the only candidate that has dedicated most of his life to EFFECTIVELY advancing democratic values. As a result, he is a calm and reasoned orator who has mastered the issues shared by his democratic opponents.

    I want the most knowledgeable, trustworthy candidate in office with the speaking skills essential to make the convincing debates in D.C. Solomon is the only one refusing corporate contributions.

    We’ll need many more like Solomon before this nation begins healing itself…our economic, social, and environmental decline has gone way beyond compromise.

  39. December 9, 2011 at 4:46 pm

    I doubt that Humboldt-Young -Dem (8:13) is a young Democrat from Humboldt County. The name probably just sounded good to a middle-aged operative in Marin County.

    So far, Huffman does not look good.

  40. Walt
    December 9, 2011 at 4:59 pm

    “I do think people in Congress need to be skilled at compromise and negotiation.” The problem with that, Mitch, is that then they’re all insiders. Insiders are the problem, not the solution. I know it’s hard to evaluate someone who doesn’t have a track record, but as you’ve seen above, folks who have track records are vilified or lionized based on where the observer gets his corn pone, not on their record.

  41. High Finance
    December 9, 2011 at 5:11 pm

    Politics is the only business where most people think that lack of experience in the field is a plus.

    Would you go to a doctor, who was a plumber yesterday, to treat your cancer ? A coffee shop owner to roof your house ?

    Being an “outsider” was a brilliant ploy dreamed upped by some forgotten wanna be politician to get elected when he had no experience or qualifications.

  42. Anonymous
    December 9, 2011 at 5:34 pm

    PJ, I know many people with more than one residence. Often people who get a lot done have also gotten some real estate, and either rented it out or are just frugal enough to make it all work. They can use a mother in law unit behind a rental as a residence, and still rent out the other part. They can house hop. I don’t think you have to be in the top 1% to own three homes.

  43. December 9, 2011 at 6:37 pm

    If Salzman leaked this information to Heraldo it is a good thing. We need to know about this educate the voters.

  44. Mitch
    December 9, 2011 at 6:41 pm

    Not schizophrenic, Apologist Not, just seeing shades of grey.

    Yes, in politics you have to learn to compromise to reach your goals. You just don’t want to compromise so much that you’re no longer representing what you arrived to represent.

    Many decent human beings go off to Washington to do the best they can. Too often, the reaction of other decent human beings back at home is to complain that “they sold us out.” They can remain pure and get nothing done, or leave activists dissatisfied and get the best they can. That’s what people do in a legislative body — nobody can dictate what they want, so everyone is forced to compromise.

    On the other hand, when you simply endorse who your leadership tells you to endorse, you may be compromising too much about the wrong things.

    If a pol endorses the machine’s candidate in return for an enforceable promise from the machine that, say, the pol’s most important legislation will receive the necessary machine backing to pass, that’s a worthwhile compromise. If a pol endorses the machine’s candidate just to remain in its general good graces, that’s not such a worthwhile compromise. There are a lot of shades of grey.

  45. Mitch
    December 9, 2011 at 6:59 pm


    I’d consider Barney Frank a good example of a former outsider who became an insider in order to get a job done. There’s nothing wrong with that, IMO, but I realize lots of people disagree with me and think of Frank as a sellout.

    If you’ve been in Congress for a few years and you haven’t made some compromises that irritate much of your base, you’re probably not doing a very good job. Often, I’d imagine there are compromises and nuances that you simply can’t reveal which, if you could tell them to your constituents, they’d understand your decisions better.

    It’s OUR mistake, not THEIRS, to think that they should just insist on getting 100% of what we want. It simply can’t be done that way in our system, at least not until the South re-secedes. (And I think that would be a great idea.) At the very least, I want my representative to understand that much. As an outsider, you can insist on a position. As a politician, you’d be a fool to do so if there is no way to achieve it. It would be like a quarterback who insisted on every play being a Hail Mary pass — he’d be exciting, but he wouldn’t win very much.

    I think President Obama is genuinely on the side of the 99%. But just being President isn’t enough to get what you want. I’d love to have seen President Obama move farther and faster, but I don’t forget how easily the system can destroy anyone, even a President. If the press decides it doesn’t like you, you can do nothing right.

    It would make me feel great to see Ralph Nader as President. The catch is, he’d probably be unable to get anything through Congress, and by the time he’d been in office for six months, the country would probably have turned on him thanks to the way he’d be portrayed by the press.

    President Obama’s most honest behavior in his first six months was reflexively calling out police behavior when the Cambridge police acted against a black Harvard professor trying to get back into his own house. A few moments of honesty nearly destroyed his administration, and he was forced to pretend his statement had been inappropriate, and initiate a “beer summit.”

    None of this is to say that activists are wrong in insisting on 100%. The only thing that they’re wrong about is being disappointed and angry at INDIVIDUAL politicians when they don’t come through.

    I don’t know who said it, but there’s the old quote about politics being the art of the possible. The job of activists is to change the playing field for the politicians. Too often, I think, activists expect the politicians to work miracles — I guess maybe some have, but it’s mostly impossible. To change the metaphor, they have to work with the hands they are dealt, and you can’t turn two deuces into four aces. I think the great politicians are working to change the hands that get dealt ten years down the road, while simultaneously playing the hand they’ve been dealt.

  46. December 9, 2011 at 7:02 pm

    It’s kinda funny,
    We have exemplary candidates to choose from for
    state-level office. The top three of our state candidates are more
    ‘presidential’ than every presidential candidate that the R’s are presenting. By leaps and bounds. Good on us.

  47. December 9, 2011 at 7:33 pm

    “We should be focused on the issues and not on smear campaigns…”

    Where’s the “smear,” Mark? If you really believed in this well-oiled candidate, you’d counter the allegations. And if you really had conviction, you’d use your last name.

    I’m wondering if “Mark” and “Humboldt-Young-Dem” are not the same person.

  48. Not A Native
    December 9, 2011 at 7:43 pm

    Going way back to PJ’s 9:13 post. you may have forgotten that Prop 14 passed, which means I’m expecting that two Democrats will be on the general election ballot.

    Assuming Huffman’s endorsements will secure him one spot, the real battle now is between Adams and Solomon for the other spot.

    Its a little early for me to be choosing, but I think bashing Huffman isn’t a winning tactic, he’s clearly got some legitimate progressive credentials. From this blog, the only differentiator I can identify between Adams and Solomon is experience, and whether thats a good or bad thing to have.

  49. December 9, 2011 at 8:11 pm

    I’m wondering if “Mark” and “Humboldt-Young-Dem” are not the same person.

    Joel is the blog whisperer.

    I doubt that Humboldt-Young -Dem (8:13) is a young Democrat from Humboldt County. The name probably just sounded good to a middle-aged operative in Marin County.

    U.S. House of Representatives, actually.

  50. December 9, 2011 at 8:28 pm

    Do I win a sundae?

  51. Anonymous
    December 9, 2011 at 8:33 pm

    “Too often, I think, activists expect the politicians to work miracles — I guess maybe some have, but it’s mostly impossible.” When you’re up to your ass in alligators, it’s hard to remember your initial objective was to drain the swamp. Especially when the ‘gators look and talk like you. So the swamp is undrained.

  52. December 9, 2011 at 9:08 pm

    Good job Joel

  53. Plain Jane
    December 9, 2011 at 10:05 pm

    Nan, you’re right. I wasn’t thinking about Prop 14, but splitting the Democratic vote 3 ways could put a Republican on the general ballot. Is Dan Roberts the only Republican candidate?

  54. What Now
    December 9, 2011 at 10:25 pm

    “High Finance says:
    December 9, 2011 at 5:11 pm
    Politics is the only business where most people think that lack of experience in the field is a plus.

    Would you go to a doctor, who was a plumber yesterday, to treat your cancer ? A coffee shop owner to roof your house ?

    Being an “outsider” was a brilliant ploy dreamed upped by some forgotten wanna be politician to get elected when he had no experience or qualifications.”

    Entirely correct.
    And the individual who 1st catapaulted to the top with this “outsidr’ tactic was Ronald Reagan.
    He wrecked California and went on to do the same to the entire country.
    Two works that cover this very well are “Sleepwalkiong Through History” and “the Two Trillion Dollar Meltdown”.

  55. tra
    December 9, 2011 at 11:11 pm

    Would you go to a doctor, who was a plumber yesterday, to treat your cancer ? A coffee shop owner to roof your house ?

    No, but I also wouldn’t hire a fox to guard my henhouse just because his resume boasts of extensive experience working with poultry.

  56. Mitch
    December 10, 2011 at 7:08 am


    You rascal!

    Thanks for my first morning laugh.

  57. December 10, 2011 at 9:11 am

    I’ll second what Mitch said about TRA’s response to HiFi’s comment. Homer Simpson might add, “It’s funny, because it’s true.”

    And, as I recall, HiFi, the “briiliant ploy dreamed upped by some forgotten … politician to get elected when he had no experience or qualifications,” was an invention of Republicans in the ’80s, along with term limits.

  58. Anonymous
    December 10, 2011 at 9:25 am

    I like the way he’s got his blazer slung over his shoulder there. The photographer must have been lucky to catch him running between skyscrapers en route to some big important meeting. But look at his armpits, he didn’t even break a sweat! Cool under pressure! This guy must be a real champion!

  59. anonymous
    December 10, 2011 at 10:21 am

    Huffman’s website doesn’t even mention gay rights. Solomon is the better and more progressive candidate.

  60. Not A Native
    December 10, 2011 at 10:24 am

    Though tra’s quip is witty, its also silly. When someone’s experience is cited, along with that comes inquiry into what the peson actually did during their period of claimed experienced.

    Another old saw is: For some people, 10 years of experience was actually 1 year of experience repeated 10 times.

    Experience of many short stints in related tasks is also different from a long period of dedication to a single task. In the particular case of Ronald Reagan as president, he did have prior experience in public office. But his record of experience as California governor was a poor endorsement for his presidency, IMO.

  61. Plain Jane
    December 10, 2011 at 10:42 am

    Nan, Tra’s quip said exactly what you did but with humor. Reagan had experience but his record of achievements was that of a fox in a hen house, a role he played as president as well. Didn’t you notice?

  62. Anonymous
    December 10, 2011 at 10:51 am

    Obama came out of the blue. Ask anybody anything about Obama Bin Laden or Barrak Hussein or whatever his “real” name is…expect blank stares, even from his most enthusiastic supporters (former supporters, in keeping up with the times). I’ve seen all of two people who claimed to know him when he was younger on TV, they were older generation family. Most people know him as Obama the halfrican american, Democrat President, and that’s about it. The whole voting system is a rigged lottery, has been since its inception. The people who started the corporation “United States of America” never had it in mind to allow a third party to tell their gang what to do.

  63. Dirty Mike
    December 10, 2011 at 11:54 am

    He came out of the blue to be editor at the Harvard Law Review for sure. Who could have imagined it?

  64. Anonymous
    December 10, 2011 at 12:12 pm

    pick a little, talk a little, pick a little, talk a little, chip chip chip, talk a lot, pick a little more!

  65. Apologist Not
    December 10, 2011 at 12:42 pm

    Recent national Polls are finding 12% approval rates, and levels of trust in their Congress.

    A democratic candidate would be a fool to market their skill at compromise today.

  66. Jack Sherman
    December 10, 2011 at 1:26 pm

    Despite abysmal voter-approval ratings for Congress, democratic players are doubling-down on the only strategy they know, “preemptive compromise”, (appealing to their opponents), and Huffman will appeal to republicans who concede that a democrat will win.

    Self-described democratic pragmatists win elections, then they lose the war.

    Had democrats focused on educating and registering the other half of America’s eligible voters, they could discard the “pragmatism” of preemptive compromise.

    Polls show that citizens who still vote are growing weary.

    They are learning the huge difference between candidates who invoke the language of change in a campaign, and candidates who actually put it to effective use….for a lifetime.

    Obviously, Solomon is that rare candidate.

  67. Plain Jane
    December 10, 2011 at 1:40 pm

    Occupy the Voting Booth is the obvious next step. Getting people registered and to the polls is absolutely mandatory to maintain the momentum. Helping people get the documents they need for photo ID’s to register to vote in states trying to make it harder for the poor to vote is another. 2012 is ours to lose and apathy is the surest way to do it.

  68. December 10, 2011 at 1:45 pm

    Well said, Mr. Sherman.

    And I see that there’s a birther (10:51) commenting on the Herald. Be nice to him. Undoubtedly he’s a lonely fellow.

  69. December 10, 2011 at 2:11 pm

    This smear, is meant to inflame supporters of the 99% movement, that is what smears do, they rely on inflamed emotional responses not facts, but here’s the rub we are not stupid, we check our facts. The smear tactic asks people to check their intelligence and common sense at the door and buy into a cynical inference.

    Huffman has a 2-decade career of public interest work, 12 years in local government, and 5 years as a legislator where he has built a huge RECORD showing where he actually stands.

    These types of “smears” are generated by people attempting to blacken the stellar record of the well endorsed, experienced political front runner. They are not really interested in the truth, they are interested in furthering their own less likely candidates. It is really a disgusting tactic.

    Don’t buy into it, go see Huffman yourself, he will be at a meet and greet tonight at Abruzzi, I’m about as far left as you get, have been known to chain myself to a tree from time to time and after researching all and meeting most of the candidates Huffman clearly represents my interests and has proven to be able to get things done, and on the floor in Washington DC, we need someone with this experience and tenacity. Go meet him, ask for yourself. Clear the Smear!

    Join Jared and campaign co-chair Mark Wheetley for
    a drink and conversation
    Saturday, December 10, 2011
    5 p.m. – 7:00 p.m.
    Abruzzi- Bottom Floor, Jacoby Storehouse
    On the Plaza (780 7th Street) in Arcata, California

  70. December 10, 2011 at 3:21 pm

    Where’s the smear? How was my intelligence was checked at the door?

    You could try to refute the information in this post, but so far you haven’t done that, Owltotem. You can say that you’re “about as far left as you get,” but your choice of candidates would suggest that you’re about as far left as Mike Thompson.

  71. Anonymous
    December 10, 2011 at 4:33 pm

    I Like tacos

  72. Not A Native
    December 10, 2011 at 4:44 pm

    Mark Wheatley(with Alex Stillman) tried to connive to deny Shane Britton a largely ceremonial vice mayor title. Earlier, they colluded to remove Shane as representative to HWMA.

    Their true agenda is to deny Shane an opportunity to gain meaningful(and politically valuable) experience. Thats what I call a hatchet job. If Shane ‘messes up’ in his responsibilities, that will be remembered. But if he’s never given the opportunity, he can be relegated to the ‘unqualified’ category.

    Shane was elected, just like Stillman and Wheatly were. But they don’t want the public to have a chance to find out whether his inclusionary style of local politics is effective. They want to isolate Shane out of fear he might succeed which would result in the shop owners and landlords of Arcata losing their political influence.

  73. Will-they-provide-snacks-at-Abruzzi?
    December 10, 2011 at 4:49 pm

    “This smear, is meant to inflame supporters of the 99% movement”

    Thanks for the massive respect, Mr. “as far left as you get.”

  74. Anonymous
    December 10, 2011 at 5:03 pm

    OT is not a he, and she really, really loves the zoo.

  75. tra
    December 10, 2011 at 5:50 pm


    What form did the “conniving” and “collusion” take? I’m just curious, since this is the first I’ve heard about it. My impression had been that the Arcata City Council members all got along pretty well together (at least as opposed to, say, the bitter divisions that have often characterized Eureka’s City Council in recent years). If there is a faction that is in fact trying to marginalize one of their fellow council members, that’s not good at all.

    I give Shane a lot of credit for bucking the rest of the council by being the only one of them to oppose the City’s overreaching, freedom-of-speech-squelching, lawsuit-inviting “anti-panhandling” ordinance. If there is in fact some movement afoot among the downtown merchants and landlords to try to reduce Shane’s influence, I suspect it might have something to do with that.

  76. Not A Native
    December 10, 2011 at 6:59 pm

    tra, watch the archived Nov. 28 Arcata Council meeting, Stillman and Wheatly show their colors.

  77. tra
    December 10, 2011 at 7:17 pm


  78. Anonymous
    December 11, 2011 at 12:01 am

    Huffman is super slick, Machine indeed. Watch out. Susan Adams is really the only respectable candidate. She can stay up here because she’s from here. She’s our local voice.

  79. Anonymous
    December 11, 2011 at 11:11 am

    Joel’s all talk, let’s see his list of favorites. How are YOU going to vote, Mr. J. Milky? It’s easy to make others a target, let’s put your personal wisdom in our sights for critique.

  80. Anonymous
    December 11, 2011 at 11:29 am

    NAN, There is no Nov 28th council meeting in the online archive.

  81. December 11, 2011 at 11:57 am

    Thanks for asking, Anonymous 11:11. I very much like Susan Adams. She’s bright, unusually articulate, thoughtful, patient and hard-working. She would represent us very well.

    I’m ignorant about the other candidates, but I’ll be reading about them. What I’ve read of Norman Solomon sounds impressive.

    Mr. Huffman’s defenders here, and his endorsements from political professionals have not improved his standing with me, and his anonymous shill in Thompson’s office didn’t help much either. He looks like the perfect candidate if you you like things the way they are.

  82. Anonymous
    December 11, 2011 at 12:33 pm

    I like Stillman and Wheetley. They always make sense to me.

  83. Plain Jane
    December 11, 2011 at 12:44 pm

    Ditto Joel. I could be happy with either Adams or Solomon but haven’t decided to vote for. Political operatives posing as locals is a real turn off.

  84. Jack Sherman
    December 11, 2011 at 1:29 pm

    Adams would be fine, but listen to the debates, Solomon is a master of THEIR purported issues, his entire life prepared him for this! His convincing, knowledgeable demeanor is desperately needed in Congress.

    Owltotem’s outrage over a “smear” would be more convincing with an example, other than the occasional baseless comments on everything and anything on a blog site.

    Considering Solomon’s extensive publications, books and accomplishments, it’s Huffman, and his supporter’s challenge to provide examples of Huffman’s actual voting record, however brief it may be.

  85. December 11, 2011 at 1:50 pm

    “I like Stillman and Wheetley. They always make sense to me.” 12:33

    I too believed these two to be adults,
    one can not be an ‘adult’ and sponsor, approve or reconcile
    the behavior below.

    “We have idiots pulling vegetation off of our fore dunes,
    Violating every sense of propriety and reason and exposing
    our pipe to the Pacific.

    Stillman? Wheetly?

  86. Anonymous
    December 11, 2011 at 7:08 pm

    Shane Brinton is an idiot! I’ve been witness to too many arrogant and self-important speeches by this uneducated and inexperienced politician to last a lifetime!

  87. Anonymous
    December 11, 2011 at 10:46 pm

    You’ve obviously never watched Shane address a crowd. He has twice the communication skills (and common sense) of Eureka’s typical city council tools, Bass, Jagger, Madsen, Jones…

    Few of these folks have ever gone further than the local seat that their speculator-backers handed them.

    Who could understand a word McKeller or Hunter-Meeks used to growl?

    It’s tough for a young working person like Shane to slam the phones needed to turn out supporters…but he’s doing it.

  88. December 12, 2011 at 3:59 pm

    Anonymous 7:08 must be referring to some other Shane Brinton.

  89. High Finance
    December 12, 2011 at 8:43 pm

    Anonymous 10.46pm must be referring to some alternate opposite universe.

  90. Eric Kirk
    December 12, 2011 at 9:41 pm

    I wish we had a local candidate for congress. Marin ain’t Humboldt.

    Andy Caffrey is local. Not that I expect the rest of the large district to elect someone from Humboldt, nor do I really care whether the candidate is local. But we do have a local candidate. There’s one from Mendo too.

  91. Anonymous
    December 12, 2011 at 9:46 pm

    I don’t agree that much with Shane but I have to say he is a good command of English and has an excellent speaking ability. I think he does his homework. That said, I still disagree a lot with him.

  92. Anonymous
    December 12, 2011 at 10:40 pm

    Maybe Mr. Finance can enlighten us how many of his brilliant candidates made it past a county office in the last generation?

  93. December 13, 2011 at 9:04 am

    “…nor do I really care whether the candidate is local.”

    Thank you, Eric. That being said, if it makes anyone feel better, Susan Adams has immediate family in Humboldt, and spends a lot of time here, and I don’t think that Norman Soloman would ignore our interests because he’s not a local.

    And HiFi, you could learn a lot from Anonymous 9:46.

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