The commentary on the hard-right political blogs is dominated by a handful of people and a very narrow demographic. In the recent State of Jefferson dialogue, I counted only 10: George Rebane, Russ Steele, Nancy Garcia, Barry Pruett, Don Bessee, Gregory Goodknight, Todd Juvinall, The Union columnist George Boardman, “Bill Tozer,” and “fish” (AKA David Larsen of Carmichael ).
Nearly all of them are hard-right, tea-party or State of Jefferson political activists or “all of the above.” Rebane’s blog is used as a tool to whip up the activists. Todd Juvinal’s blog is dominated by anonymous sock puppets — all personal attacks and nasty. On the SOJ discussion on Rebane’s blog, most of the commentary is comprised of personal attacks and nasty comments or outright lies. “Anything goes” with George; he does not moderate. In addition, many of the people hide behind fake names or vague ones such as “Gregory” or “fish.”
On this blog — posted here and on Facebook — I counted 23 comments, from a broader demographic (yes, a few activists but also school teachers, real-estate agents, artists, successful business people and entrepreneurs like Boga paddle boards, and so on). There was a mix of men and women too.
It is far broader than on Rebane’s blog, almost exclusively dominated by like-minded, white male, hard-right activist retirees (Rebane and Steele have long dominated this demographic).
The count on my blog for SOJ includes myself, highly conservative John Stoos, Lindy Beatie, Nina Bigley, Chip Wilder, Jim Firth, Brian Smith, Sean O’Hara, Ed Peritz, Linda Hempel, Frank Patch Way, Steve Frisch, John Daly, Carole Pendledon Hyde Chapman, Sue Williams Clark, Michael Keiser, Chris Bishop, Larry Miller, Audrey Ohlson Smith, Tony Loro, Trish Myler, Katherine Smith-Schad, and Ben Emery.
That’s more than two comments here for every one on Rebane’s blog. If this is any indicator, the State of Jefferson initiative will go down in flames — and it will.
Meanwhile, the initiative will cast a major pall over our economic development efforts, making people wonder if they should “invest” in our county: whether it’s a private investment or a government one. In short, our hard-right activists are undermining our future.
Here are some signed comments from my blog post — either on here or below the post on my Facebook page:
Lindy Beatie: “Total waste of previous time and taxpayer dollars.”
Sue Williams Clark: “I can’t help but wonder why this is given front-page priority. Well, I think I know.”
Audrey Ohlson Smith: “Sick!”
Ben Emery: “What SoJ supporters are realizing is that organizing and numbers help them move their position forward. Hopefully they will start to understand that workers need to be able to do the same.”
Trish Meyler: “Two stories on pot, 3 new Dollar Stores (are you kidding me?), and headline news the State of Jefferson. It’s the state of something alright.”
Katherine Smith-Schad: “Ugh.”
John Daly: “I am ashamed that we have such a “news” paper for our community. The State of Jefferson would be a complete financial failure and Nevada County should exclude itself from it. Front page news? Really.”
Jim Firth: “County Boards of Supervisors all around our region are withdrawing any support for the Jefferson’s.”