Monday, December 30, 2013

EPA air pollution scare debunked by best data set ever assembled on particulate matter and deaths

I always thought the EPA's war on particulate matter (or PM) was a pile of crap.  Now the data is coming in to show it. you think this will change the narrow minds at the EPA?   More likely, they will double down.

Based on a comparison of air quality data from the California Air Resources Board and death certificate data for 854,109 deaths from the California Department of Public Health for the years 2007-2010, no correlation was identified between changes in ambient PM2.5 and daily deaths, including when the analysis was limited to the deaths among the elderly, heart and/or lung deaths only, and heart and/or lung deaths among the elderly. Although this is only an epidemiologic or statistical study that cannot absolutely exclude the possibility that PM2.5 actually affects mortality in some small and as yet unknown way, these results also illustrate that it would be virtually impossible to demonstrate through epidemiologic study that such an effect actually exists.

Next Shoe To Drop In Broke California’s Lopsided 'Recovery'

Wolf's use of the word "lopsided" is a good one.  If you have a degree and in demand, youre REALLY in demand.  Otherwise, you're toast.
If you come to San Francisco or Silicon Valley and look around, you’d arrive at the conclusion that California is booming, that companies jump through hoops to hire people, that they douse them with money, stock options, and free lunches. You’d see engineers spend lavishly and drive up rents and home prices to where landlords react with record evictions of the less-lucky. You’d see Google buses bring in people and trigger mini-demonstrations. You’d see entire layers of long-time residents getting pushed out because it has just gotten too expensive. In San Francisco, you’d see throngs of tourists from China and other places, spending money hand over fist. And there are a few other pockets in California where money is no objective.

But in the rest of the state, the picture isn’t that rosy.
A friend reminded me of the acronym "SNAFU".  I thought that would be an apt description...

Sunday, December 29, 2013

Texas, California embody red-blue divide

From the Washington Post:

California has been able to make progress after many years of stalemate in Sacramento because Democrats have the power to act, Brown said. But he also pointed to a downside of unified Democratic power — an almost limitless appetite by legislators to keep spending. “If I took my foot off the brake, we’d be back in the red within six months,” he said.

Texas has enjoyed a period of strong growth and continues to attract people and businesses. Californians argue they are rising again. More than any other pair of states, they stand as proxies for the national debate about the size and shape of government and which direction a divided America should go in the future.
The difference is the CA model just isn't sustainable.  But, then again, if energy prices take a nosedive, could TX rebound?  The answer is a strong most likely.  Why?  Because with low regulation barriers and fewer state laws, private commerce and businesses can quickly turn to other more profitable ventures.

If the CA model breaks down....what is your alternative?  There is none.

"Military Style" Raid On California Power Station Spooks US

What the heck?
Around 1:00 AM on April 16, at least one individual (possibly two) entered two different manholes at the PG&E Metcalf power substation, southeast of San Jose, and cut fiber cables in the area around the substation. That knocked out some local 911 services, landline service to the substation, and cell phone service in the area, a senior U.S. intelligence official told Foreign Policy. The intruder(s) then fired more than 100 rounds from what two officials described as a high-powered rifle at several transformers in the facility. Ten transformers were damaged in one area of the facility, and three transformer banks -- or groups of transformers -- were hit in another, according to a PG&E spokesman.

Friday, December 27, 2013

Peachtree Rock....has toppled

Crap.  I used to go there as a kid, just to see he inverted rock.  It was pretty amazing.

When I was in the 8th grade back in 1969 or 68, I've lost track. Tommy, my best friend, told me about this place called Peachtree Rock.  Sounded like fun so his mom drove us out into the sticks and dropped us off.

From a geological standpoint it was amazing.  Coquina everywhere.  Sandstone everywhere.  A small waterfall to boot.  Tranquil and serene.  Great hiking territory with rolling hills.

And the most amazing thing was the inverted pyramid rock.  At the time you could climb it and stand on it.  But over time, erosion and people defacing it by chipping away at the base have caused it to fall.

Tommy and I collected rock samples and I gave a presentation in my 8th grade geology class.  The science teacher, Mrs. Pamela Cromer was pretty impressed.  In fact, a few years later she was voted Outstanding Teacher and went on to work for the State.

No one ever said, but I think she in turn told others about Peachtree Rock, because within a few short years it became a State Park.  Anyway, I like to think that maybe I had something to do with it.

Here's a picture of the rock before the fall:

Here's the link to the video.  As usual, Blogger won't display non-youtube videos.

Here's a video of the rock from youtube:

And here's a video of the small waterfall.  Just to the left of the fall are some small holes.  Later, in college, I took a date out to the area.  I had hidden a bottle of wine in one of the holes.  I impressed the heck out of the woman when I produced it.

Thursday, December 26, 2013


Amazingly, as the Federal Government grows each year, there are cuts?  But expect more of this.
Former law enforcement officer Ken Selig found the sheriff's refusal to respond to any but life-threatening calls "unacceptable." He joined forces with friends and formed the North Valley Community Watch, which is one of many watches that have formed in lieu of sheriff's services.

Selig's community watch team consists of approximately 100 members, including 12 who are specially designated as an armed "response team."

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Merry Christmas California - No Shopping Days Left For Nuclear

Absolutely incredible.   Why are we so...FEARFUL?

California is getting a lump of coal for Christmas because it was naughty in shutting down the San Onofre Nuclear Generating Station (SONGS) in San Diego this year. The lump of coal comes in the form of an extra 18 million tons of CO2 per year delivered to the atmosphere by replacing the 15 billion kWhrs of electricity each year with a mix of gas, wind and solar. Also lost will be 1,500 local jobs and $50 million in lost revenue to Southern California each year (EIA, NEI).


All we had to do was decrease one reactor’s output by 20% to solve the problem, which would have dropped total output of SONGS by only 8%. So instead of puting out 15 billion kWhrs of electricity each year, SONGS could have put out over 13 billion kWhrs of low-carbon electricity each year. This could have been sustained for 20 years.

Instead, California now has to maintain a shuttered plant for at least that long that is not producing anything and can no longer even pay its taxes for storing its nuclear waste. The cost will, of course, probably be passed on to rate payers somehow.
Why do you allow this to happen to you?

Merry Christmas

I and my staff (that ouwl be just me) want to wish all of you a Happy Christmas.

Back in 2010 I was working in Freiberg, Germany but living in Dresden.  I would take the train home to the Hauptbahnhof and then jump onto a  commuter train and finally, grab a bus.  The total commute was about 90 minutes.

While switching over to the commuter train, a choir was performing in the main hall.  I whipped out my iPhone and recorded the audio of the song that accompanies the youtube video below.

The photos are of the winter and Christmas time in Hamburg and Dresden.  Without a doubt, Christmas is the best time of year in Germany.  The Christmas Markets alone make it worth being there.  The woman and the child are my wife and daughter.  The guy dressed as St. Nikolaus..well, I don't know who he is.

The beautiful snowy picture was the backyard scene from our apartment.

Monday, December 23, 2013

Warnings from Bill Lockyer, California’s truth-telling treasurer: Thomas Elias

Nothing new here, but it all still bears repeating.  And I keep wondering when it will all implode.
One is that too much of California’s state revenue now comes from income taxes and not enough from other levies like the sales tax. Like others, Lockyer believes this is one reason California continues to see a net out-migration to other states, even as foreign immigration fuels some increases in population.

He also used the word “alarming” to describe the ever-increasing income gap between rich and poor Californians. Another way to view that gap is as part of the gulf that has developed between coastal and inland Californians.

New armored tank for town police sparks fear, war of words

What amazes me is the police chief just doesn't understand what all the fuss is about.

I guarantee you it's just a matter of time they start using this thing to serve warrants and to raze the person's house at the same time.

Critics took to the police department’s Facebook page to ask exactly why a city of 150,000 on the northern California coast really needs a vehicle designed for battlefield use. It’s more likely to be used against its own citizens, they said..

“That vehicle is made for war. Do not use my safety to justify that vehicle,” one wrote. “The Salinas Police Department is just a bunch of cowards that want to use that vehicle as intimidation and to terrorize the citizens of this city.”

‘To stop gang members?” another wrote. “Hmmm gang members don’t riot in mass numbers. It’s right in front of our faces and we don’t see it. Why would the ARMY!!! give something like that for FREE!!! Let’s think for once people.”

Police Chief Kelly McMillin said he doesn’t understand the problem.

Saturday, December 21, 2013

California fishers say quota system is all wet

I smell a lawsuit in the making.  Damned if you do.  Danmed if you don't.  This just sounds like yet another law that was supposed to help the little guy but as usual, the little guy gets stabbed in the chest, facing the culprit:  the Federal Government.

"Financially, I can only say that multiple trips have been cancelled due to a lack of availability of these monitors, millions of pounds of fish have not been caught, processed and sold to markets and this is a loss of millions of dollars," said Michael Lucas, president of North Coast Fisheries Inc., in a letter to federal regulators.

Silicon Valley investor wants to split California into six states

Hey, I think this is a good idea.
He told TechCrunch: “It is about time California was properly represented with senators in Washington. Now our number of senators per person will be about average.”

In October at Y Combinator Startup School, one tech entrepreneur called for Silicon Valley to secede from the United States altogether.

Balaji Srinivasan, co-founder of San Francisco–based genetics company Counsyl, gave a talk to aspiring entrepreneurs about "Silicon Valley's ultimate exit," which outlined his vision of a tech world free of the constraints of government.

"We need to build opt-in society, outside the U.S., run by technology," Srinivasan said.
Yeah.  Just like the NSA!  Sure!

Friday, December 20, 2013

'Food fraud' a growing problem in grocery stores

And all of those regulations are doing NOTHING to stop it.  Not working very well, eh?
The top fraudster foods: olive oil. Even the extra-virgin kind is the most adulterated food, usually cut by hazelnut oil, which could pose a dangerous threat to those with nut-allergies.

Even milk can contain added sugar and salt, and skim powder - none of it listed on the label.

Tea bags are sometimes being filled with lawn grass. More expensive white tuna is switched for cheaper escolar.
Most of these items are old news. A while back I switched to California extra virgin oil since it's been found to be the real thing. Months ago I switched to local honey and honey listed as unfiltered.

Could this be the underbelly of inflation?

Paglia: Duck Dynasty uproar ‘utterly fascist, utterly Stalinist’

Once homosexuals become a protected class, Christianity is OUT THE WINDOW.  Who didn't see this coming?
“I think that this intolerance by gay activists toward the full spectrum of human beliefs is a sign of immaturity, juvenility,” Paglia said. “This is not the mark of a true intellectual life. This is why there is no cultural life now in the U.S. Why nothing is of interest coming from the major media in terms of cultural criticism. Why the graduates of the Ivy League with their A, A, A+ grades are complete cultural illiterates, etc. is because they are not being educated in any way to give respect to opposing view points.”

“There is a dialogue going on human civilization, for heaven sakes. It’s not just this monologue coming from fanatics who have displaced the religious beliefs of their parents into a political movement,” she added. “And that is what happened to feminism, and that is what happened to gay activism, a fanaticism.”
 A FREE LAND that has embedded in the US Constitution that we have religious freedom.  That piece of paper is rapidly becoming a DOOR STOP.

Thursday, December 19, 2013

California might be first to mandate 'kill switch' for smartphones

Now why the hell does there need to be a LAW??
Still, at least one trade group, known as CTIA-The Wireless Association, has warned that a kill switch could make smartphones susceptible to hackers, who could theoretically gain unauthorized access to a phone and render it inoperable for its owner. This could potentially impact law enforcement officials and other federal agencies.
Hackers?  How about the local police?  I'm more fearful of them than hackers.

Also, how is the kill switch going to stop thefts? If you want to stop the thief from using your phone, call your carrier and they will deactivate the phone.

The main reason for a kill switch would be to wipe out the contact and SMS information. And you still have to call your carrier.

And to give you an idea how LEFTIST CA has become, this article shows the Mayor of London asking phone manufacturers to do more to prevent phone thefts.  No, he hasn't called for MORE LAWS.  He's doing it the smart way.  Whereas, CA's only solution is to pass a law.

Yes, CA deserves its nickname the Venezuela of North America.

Texas considers options to avoid pension shortfall

Now, this is how it's done.  Problems aren't expected until 2052, but the TX legislature will take on the problem NOW.
When it meets again in 2015, the Legislature could consider several options to improve the fund's health: a one-time payment of $4.5 billion; an increase in the rate of payroll contributions shared by employers and workers; a cut in benefits to future hires; or a separation of law enforcement employees allowed to retire earlier, according to officials.

"It's not going to be easy, and it's not going to be quick," said Ann Bishop, executive director of the Employees Retirement System. "It didn't happen overnight, and it's not going to be fixed overnight. It does take some discipline."
Now, Houston needs to confront its problems of too much debt.  I talked about this a while back, I'm sure.

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

EPA: Chevron Violated Law at California Refinery

All this proves is that the EPA is a completely worthless watchdog and enforcer of any regulations and laws.  But they demonize Chevron in order to make themselves look as clean as the wind driven snow.

Go ahead!  Fine them out of existence and tack on another two dollars to the price of a gallon of gas!

Jared Blumenfeld, EPA's regional administrator, said investigators determined Chevron's culture does not place high enough emphasis on safety. He said the company failed to verify that its own risk management plan was being used by refinery staff.

"The reward system is focused on the number of running hours of the facilities, and how that affected bonuses and performance," Blumenfeld said. Chevron "needs to impose one where the risk management plan is put into everyone's job."
Of course!  It's Capitalism's fault!  Doh!

Public Support Is Low For A California Initiative To Cut Government Employee Pensions

That's too bad.  They really need to give the power back to the local communities.
The poll found that 24% of voters said they were opposed to a constitutional amendment that allowed government agencies to reduce employees’ retirement benefits, 20% said they were not sure how they’d vote, and 14% said they would vote against it. The remainder said they were “still considering” the issue.

“The fact that this initiative calls for the modification of retirement benefits only for years of services not yet performed makes little difference to voters,” pollster Fred Yang said in a statement. “Moreover, even with a neutral reading of the ballot, this measure fails to garner over 36% of the vote in the initial trial heat.”

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Rampant Food, Disability Lawsuits Land California Atop `Judicial Hellholes' List

Cangrats, CA!  You're the winner!

A dozen or so law firms, many of them veterans of the tobacco litigation jackpot, have filed 75 class actions against food companies in California and similar cases are running almost one a week, ATRA reports. Many involve the same plaintiffs and take advantage of the state’s stringent laws to target companies like Chobani and Trader Joe’s with claims that they mislabeled products – for example, using the term “evaporated can juice” instead of “sugar".

California bills to target 'ghost guns,' revenge porn

CA continues to try to form the state into its own image.  And Hallelujah! CA has seen the light and now oil and gas are good!!  They can tax it!

Yep, like I said in the previous posting, CA is such a good steward of your money, well, why not give them more to squander and throw down more rat holes?

Meanwhile, Democratic Sens. Noreen Evans of Santa Rosa and Mark DeSaulnier of Concord plan to introduce a new bill to tax oil pumped from the ground in California on a sliding scale of from 2% to 8%, with some of the money going to reduce tuition for those attending state universities.

Activist Tom Steyer launches California oil tax campaign

Because if there is one thing CA needs is more money since they've done such a bang-up job with the money they have already.
Environmental activist Tom Steyer, the billionaire Democrat who poured millions of dollars into 2013 campaigns around the country, launched a political drive Monday in his home state to call for an oil extraction tax that he argues will raise billions in revenue for California.

Steyer, in an opinion piece published Monday in The Chronicle, outlined what he said will be an aggressive effort by NextGenClimate Action, his political action committee, to "shine a very bright spotlight on an indefensible corporate tax giveaway that is costing California and its future."
I'm all for CA taxing the oil and gas out of the ground.  But, CA's problems are so deep and entrenched, money will not ever, ever solve those issues.

Monday, December 16, 2013

NEW: Video: Mike Rowe on the hidden cost of compliance

Great interview with Mike Rowe via

Health insurance enrollment by Hispanics is lagging in California

What a surprise!  I said a few months ago, once the illegal aliens see how much this is going to cost them, they would regret ever trying to be legal!  And the ones who are already legal, regret it even more.

Even though the administration has not released national Hispanic enrollment numbers, the California figures are a “red flag” for what might be happening more broadly, said Gabriel R. Sanchez, a pollster specializing in the Hispanic community and head of the Robert Wood Johnson Center for Health Policy at the University of New Mexico.

“California was supposed to be out in front of the pack on marketing efforts targeting Latinos,” he said. “The fact that their numbers don’t look good is pretty dire for the administration.”
It all comes down to the numbers.  Over 9 million Hispanics are eligible to buy insurance on the exchanges.  Most likely the numbers are coming in at the tens of thousands level.

What does this say?  It says the MILLIONS who don't have insurance either find the cost still to high or they just don't think they need it.

So, why force them?  What goodwill do you think that will get for you?

Sunday, December 15, 2013

What does Sriracha-geddon say of CA's business climate?

It says a lot.  It says, "don't do business in CA".

“California has a large tax load that in turn funds a large administrative state that has to be busy,” notes former California Assemblyman Chuck DeVore, now vice president at the conservative Texas Public Policy Foundation in Austin. He has authored a forthcoming study showing that California employs far more regulators than most other states.

But perhaps Huy Fong officials will solve the problem by seeking out locations that don’t subject them to lawsuits and costly production stoppages. A spokeswoman for Texas Gov. Rick Perry’s office confirmed that it has “reached out” to Huy Fong Foods. Reports suggest the company may already be pondering a move to Pennsylvania. There’s an old economic saying that you get more of what you subsidize and less of what you punish. That doesn’t apply only to the production of hot sauces.

California’s troubles are on every corner

A little to pro-Brown for my tastes, but the issues are real.
Despite its financial woes, California continues to talk about a high-speed rail line between Los Angeles and San Francisco that would cost tens of billions. On another front, the state ruled against allowing fracking for oil and gas despite having the largest shale deposits in the country. Many believe this one move alone could have helped release California from the grips of financial despair.

I have always loved visiting California, and the Bay Area in particular. But now I’m not so sure. The state’s problems are deep-seated and becoming clearly visible. In fact, the shivering evidence can be found on pretty much any street corner.

Saturday, December 14, 2013


Not going so smoothly after all?  No surprise here!

"The back end is so backed up, and no one can give me an answer," said Thomas Gallo, who was a strong supporter of Obamacare. Gallo signed up for healthcare for his family on October 2 but did not hear back for weeks. When he followed up on his application, he was told at the end of November that it was lost. "What happens if we don't get coverage by Jan. 1? There are real problems here," Gallo said.

Blue Shield of California Chief Executive Paul Markovich admitted, "There are certainly some people who have enrolled or think they have enrolled and haven't received confirmation. It's our version of Black Friday right now and that is what we are coping with."
Wow!  This is a real mess!

Friday, December 13, 2013

Manhattan Apartment Rents Drop for a Third Straight Month

Well, this matches what I found looking at the U-Haul Index.  First, the article:
Manhattan apartment rents fell for a third month in November and the vacancy rate reached the highest in at least seven years, signs the market is weakening amid a spike in homebuying and the lure of leasing in Brooklyn.

The median monthly rent in Manhattan dropped 3 percent from a year earlier to $3,100, according to a report today by appraiser Miller Samuel Inc. and brokerage Douglas Elliman Real Estate. The vacancy rate climbed to 2.8 percent, the highest since the firms began tracking the data in August 2006.
Well, maybe since it's Mahattan, it's just more expensive regardless of the cost of things.   But a 14' truck for two bedrooms of stuff is a whopping $2,456.  But this includes an extra day and extra miles in the cost.  So, is it the same?

Possibly not.  The return trip is $932.  This is a ratio of 2.63  I don't remember how this compares to CA Fresno/San Francisco.

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Baker says he’d rather go to jail after judge orders him to bake cakes for gay ‘weddings’

So, the persecution of American Christians switches to high gear.  I never in my life thought I would see this.
Phillips and his lawyers have argued that the religious nature of his objection to gay “marriage” warrants an exception to the anti-discrimination law, which also names religion among its protected classes.

But on December 7, Judge Robert Spencer ruled in the gay couple’s favor, equating Phillips’s deeply held religious beliefs against gay “marriage” with racial bias. To allow Phillips to refuse to serve gay “weddings,” the judge argued, “would allow a business that served all races to nonetheless refuse to serve an interracial couple because of the business owner's bias against interracial marriage.”

Wrote Spencer, “it may seem reasonable that a private business should be able to refuse service to anyone it chooses. This view, however, fails to take into account the cost to society and the hurt caused to persons who are denied service simply because of who they are.”

The judge also rejected Phillips’s argument that he was simply obeying the state constitution by refusing to recognize a same-sex relationship as “marriage.”

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

California Lawmakers Worry About Pollution Caused By Illegal Marijuana Grows

From a CA perspective, this makes complete sense.  Legalize pot, then regulate it out of existence.  But what will happen then is the illegal market will once again flourish.

How utterly, utterly stupid.

"We are concerned that existing guidelines do not address the long term detrimental threats these operations pose to the environment and nearby communities," read the lawmakers' letter. "We urge you to consider the significant impacts of drug cultivation operations on public and trespassed lands throughout the country and add new emphasis to countering the environmental damages of drug production."


You call this a success?  This is a disaster!
An estimated 70% of California doctors will not participate in the Obamacare-compliant health insurance policies offered by Covered California, according to the California Medical Association, as reported by the Washington Examiner. Though Covered California claims that 85% of doctors will participate, many doctors listed as participating are expected to decline payment, having learned that reimbursements will be very low.
Welcome to the Brave New World.

Monday, December 9, 2013

How Every Part of American Life Became a Police Matter

Well, I was hoping we would see a short period of austerity in this country.  This period was to usher in the New American Century with substantially less intrusion by the Federal Government.  But, it looks like to me, things will be much worse before they finally get better.

By now, the militarization of the police has advanced to the point where "the War on Crime" and "the War on Drugs" are no longer metaphors but bland understatements. There is the proliferation of heavily armed SWAT teams, even in small towns; the use of shock-and-awe tactics to bust small-time bookies; the no-knock raids to recover trace amounts of drugs that often result in the killing of family dogs, if not family members; and in communities where drug treatment programs once were key, the waging of a drug version of counterinsurgency war. (All of this is ably reported on journalist Radley Balko's blog and in his book, The Rise of the Warrior Cop.) But American over-policing involves far more than the widely reported up-armoring of your local precinct. It's also the way police power has entered the DNA of social policy, turning just about every sphere of American life into a police matter.


Despite a long-term drop in youth crime, the carceral style of education remains in style. Metal detectors—a horrible way for any child to start the day—are installed in ever more schools, even those with sterling disciplinary records, despite the demonstrable fact that such scanners provide no guarantee against shootings and stabbings.
And where does the school get the money for these metal detectors? Why, from the Federal Government, of course!  Believe, me, I think we can lay 85% of the problems at the feet of our Federal Government.

Saturday, December 7, 2013

U-Haul Index for December

Well, it looks like things have settled down for the winter and especially, Christmas.  This is normally the season few people move.  Kids are in school and no one wants to disrupt that.  Family, friends, food and drink.  And hopefully, deep spiritual reflection, too.

So, we see the U-Haul Index stabilizing:

Fresno ==> San Antonio, TX $1728

San Francisco ==> San Antonio $1395

San Antonio ==> Fresno  $691

San Antonio ==> San Francisco $821

Nothing of note here.  I have noticed that the cost of a U-Haul truck from New York has gone up dramatically.  Or, maybe it never went down.  But, the poor are fleeing there as well.  The cost was in the range of $2200 for the same size truck.  Just amazing.

Friday, December 6, 2013

San Francisco considers banning butterfly releases

Why would you want to live in a city that does this?  I just don't understand why the people that are voted in over and over consider banning butterflies would remotely consider them a threat to the environment.  How utterly, utterly stupid and idiotic.

The resolution states the commission supports a ban because the practice of releasing the insects at weddings and other celebrations can negatively impact the indigenous population and hamper conservation efforts.

“Many San Franciscans believe that butterflies are animals to be respected and valued as part of the city’s natural heritage and should not be used as decorations or for entertainment,” the resolution states.

Thursday, December 5, 2013

California lawmaker seeks investigation of Republican health care website

Here we see the continued death spiral of CA.  CA Republicans set up a website critical of Obamacare and an "investigation" is called for?  To hell with free speech, I guess!

Adding his voice to a rising chorus of criticism, a Democratic assemblyman called on Wednesday for a legislative investigation of a health care website created by California Republicans.

Assemblyman Jimmy Gomez, D-Los Angeles, became the latest California Democrat to assail a website he says Assembly Republicans created to amplify critiques of the law, rather than help Californians enroll in insurance via Covered California, the state's newly operational exchange. Gomez has sent the Assembly Rules Committee a letter asking them to investigate.

Monday, December 2, 2013

Bakers, Mustard Makers Break Free Cottage food bill opens up sales from home kitchens

I reported on this some time ago.  I still don't like all the red tape, but it is more of a "California Compromise" if anything else.

And it works:

After a successful surgery, Hytken started baking. But health code regulations prohibited her from selling her many banana breads: chocolate chip, walnut, original, organic and gluten-free.

That changed earlier this year when Hytken became the first person in Humboldt County to receive a Cottage Food Operations permit under a new law that went into effect on Jan. 1. The law rips through decades of red tape that forbade sales of non-refrigerated homemade goods. The list of items that people can now make at home and sell to the public includes jams, jellies, granola, trail mix, chocolate-covered nuts, popcorn, vinegar, mustard, roasted coffee and any baked goods that do not contain cream, custard or meat fillings.
And it looks like the cottage industry is exploding.  I think this list is only for county Hytken is in:

Arcata Bay Llamas (Class A), Sherria Tyler, 822-8661. Plum jam and lavender and chamomile tea.

The Banana Bread Cottage* (Class A), Mary Ann Hytken, 443-5021. Banana breads.

Carlene and Anthony P. Coglaiti (Class B), 668-5550. Specialty breads, including bread bowls for Adel's in Eureka and naan for Bollywood Indian Cuisine.

Ewe So Dirty Products (Class A), Jamie Cohoon, 764-2161, Lanolin products from Cohoon's sheep, including lip balm, soap, massage oil and lotion.

Granny Be Jammin* (Class A), Cindi Hebard, 445-8362. Local fruit jams and jellies, raspberry bread and pies.

Honey Apple Farms (Class A), Rochelle Honig, 496-9958. Plum, strawberry and strawberry-rhubarb jams and apple butter.

Humboldt Hens (Class A), Autumn Glock, 672-2576. Jams, jellies, preserves, cakes, cookies, breads, marshmallows, candies and lozenges.

A Little Sugar Rush* (Class A), Jennifer Troeger, 499-6586, Specialty cupcakes (strawberry, mimosa), pies and breads for small gatherings. Norton Creek Farm (Class A), Roger L. Smith, 839-0786, Dried fruits and vegetables.

The Old Farmhouse Bakery (Class A), Charlou Weaver, 768-2057. Breads (white, wheat and flax) and cookies (chocolate chip, peanut butter and coconut). Closed for the season.

Trident Lightning Farms (Class A), Danielle Newman, 633-5467. Plum, blackberry and peach jam and lemon marmalade.

*Available at the Kneeland Glen Farm Stand (5851 Myrtle Ave., Eureka).

I think California needs to ponder on this and see what a success removing onerous regulations can do to lift the people out of poverty and empower its citizens.

I just hope we can see more of this and see the next Golden Age of the Golden State.