Flashback Show Ten Years to 2-12-06 with long-gone but still remembered Roughrider Richard Quigley and a host of obscure old-timers when they were youngertimers

 Apologies to listeners.  The I-pod ate my painstakingly prepared 4 1/2 hour show which featured another go-around at the “Vanish the Vendors” City Council, last week on the street, fine audio from The Grapes of Wrath, and lots of hard-hitting slightly-off-key political/educational rage songs from Ryan Harvey.  Maybe next time…

Instead we’ll be broadcasting an oldie:

Sunday, February 12, 2006 show
includes Richard Quigley interviewed on being banned from Aptos Safeway for trying to buy an “I know I’m stupid to be a loyal Safeway customer” …Discussion of the Patriot Act… “Deadman” being excluded from his wife’s funeral in Hollister the day before……”Mr. TV”….Bike church update from Road Scholar…Musical Mike and Valkyrie Valerie describing police selective enforcement against political tablers and activists near New Leaf Market…Ryan of Tent University at UCSC calling in against SCPD spygate, with Tent U update …The Brune interviews: judge drops dog-on-the-mall charge…Sylvia Karas, MHCAN Board member and psychiatric survivor speaks on AB1421 (easier psych commitment) and Prop 63 (funding of services), ducks question on whether she’ll stand up for medical marijuana use among her clients…Caller reports high-speed unsafe police chase ending in crash on 2-11…and more! 

The show broadcasts at 101.3 FM and streams on the internet at freakradio.org at 9:30 AM – 1:15 PM (May 29).  It will archive at http://www.radiolibre.org/brb/brb160529.mp3.

Thursday’s Bathrobes Show 6-8 PM features Street Interviews Against the Vanish-the-Vendors Law

And that’s mostly it !The show broadcasts at 101.3 FM and streams on the internet at freakradio.org at 6-8 PM (May 26th).  It will archive at http://www.radiolibre.org/brb/brb160526.mp3.

Go to http://radiolibre.org/brb/   for older shows–as well as the latest show.  To see some of them described go to http://huffsantacruz.org/radio.html

For the really old shows go to http://huffsantacruz.org/archivemain.html.

Gasp along with HUFF still choking from 5-24 Council Meeting, Sub Rosa Wednesday 5-25 11 AM

HUFF barely survived going mad gasping the bad air of bigotry in yesterday’s City Council meeting.  The Council ignored all critical public testimony from those who braved the toxic situation there.  Also coming up: mobilizing for educational outreach and protest in support of the vendors association,  report from Project Connect, Taking the Unhoused Civil Rights Struggle to the Staff, MHCAN report….and, as ever…more… with coffee and stuff!

Vanish the Vendors Law, RV Night Ban, Big Police Budget & Freedom SleepOut #46 (whew!)


Mathews Council Crushes Handicraft Vendors; Freedom SleepOut #46 Soldiers On
by Robert Norse   Tuesday May 24th, 2016 12:58 PM
Last chance to make a cry of outrage at the City Council’s law to outlaw all handicraft vending in the downtown and wharf-beachfront areas. Follow-up by saying no to a cop-heavy budget (social services take up less than 3% of the budget compared to police & rangers (42%). Finally the Food-Not-Bombs supported Freedom Sleepers will resume their principled civil disobedience on the sidewalk and city hall courtyard that night for the 46th week.
On the docket shortly after 2:20 p.m., Mathews’ City Council will likely rubberstamp the staff’s law reducing performance, vending, and “free speech” spaces by half. The new law will also seriously stiffen the “Move Along Every Hour” law. It will require anyone with a table or display device (anything “capable of holding tangible things”) to move along every 61 minutes. No warning will be required. Fines for overstaying your time or being outside the “exempt” areas (the blue bracketed areas on the sidewalk) will be $250 to $300 when court fees are added.The new Commercial Vending ban bars selling or displaying for donation any articles like clothing, scarves, crystals, rocks, geodes, and many other articles. This true whether anywhere on Pacific Avenue or the adjoining streets, whether inside or outside the Blue Boxes. Banned performances also may include face-painting, creating visual art, “visual art produced with limited variation”, handicrafts such as weaving, carving, stitching, sewing, lacing, and beading.The “clear” standard is whether an item though it has an “expressive purpose”, it is “deemed to have more than nominal utility apart from its communication, if it has a common and dominant non-expressive purpose.

Permitted performers such as singers, dancers, jugglers, puppeteers, magicians, actors, will be allowed to put a donation-seeking device directly on the sidewalk with their table, instruments, and possessions entirely contained within the Blue Boxes.

A map of the Blue Boxes showed only 17 between Plaza Lane and Soquel Avenue. Only two spaces are available on the Del Mar Theater block in spite of the wide sidewalks. Much sidewalk space is taken up with privatized outdoor areas next to sidewalk cafes, unpermitted merchant A-frame advertising signs (technically illegal) and other city equipment. The expansive vacant space remaining is banned for “display device” use.

Defeated on May 10th at the first reading was a motion to allow “a few” spaces against any buildings for performers as repeatedly requested. Playing against the sides of building used to be regular practice prior to 2002 under the Voluntary Street Performers Guidelines.

There is no provision for public input or regular public hearing on the adequacy of these spaces or concerns about inappropriate police or host enforcement. Apparently these issues are left in the merchant-friendly hands of staffers like Redevelopment Agency leftover Julie Hende and Assistant City Manager Scott Collins. Both have a history of creating laws or projects that reduce public space at the behest of nearby merchants.

Vendors under the leadership of Shindig, a jewelry vendor, have begun signing up to oppose and fight back against the laws. HUFF (Homeless United for Friendship & Freedom) joined Shindig on Sunday to circulate petitions opposing the destruction of street culture. Many of these laws originate with a 1994 deal between merchants and a “progressive” City Council to clear away homeless-looking people from the sidewalk by instituting ever-expanding zones where it’s been forbidden to sit, table, peacefully spare change, perform, or vend.

Agenda item #13 returns Councilmember Richelle Niroyan’s toxic attack on families living in their vehicles with a nighttime ban on RV parking anywhere in the City unless you’re a resident with a permit.

Though the federal government accepts homeless people as “residents” in allowing them to vote at the spot they currently frequent or try to find rest at, Santa Cruz will now ban homeless vehicle dwellers from applying for “resident” permits, no matter how long they’ve lived in town.

Niroyan’s latest attack on the poor on behalf of West Side wealthier folks who are concerned that RV’s block their view or “make them nervous” will have to meet a Coastal Commission review–which now seems more likely according to letters in the agenda packet.

The City’s 2017 Budget will be up for discussion beginning at 7 PM tonight all day tomorrow beginning at 9 AM. Social services (what little there is) will be up for discussion tonight with local agencies squabbling for tiny pieces of the ever-diminishing pie. Tomorrow morning Parks and Recreation (slated to take over First Alarm enforcement on Pacific Avenue and notorious for heavy ticketing and stay-away harassment in the parks at night) will be up for budget discussion at 9:10 AM. The police budget follows at 10:10 AM.

Strangely missing from the budget presentation on-line but occupying more than half of it in years past is the policing budget for the SCPD and Parks & Recreation. Nor is there any indication of the total budget with a pie chart indicating which departments get how much. In fact, nowhere in the budget agenda attachment that I’ve found is there any indication of what the total budget is for this year. City Administrator Bren Lehr was unable to find these stats in the budget, but after tracking the matter to the Finance Department, I found that this year’s budget is $90 million or so. And 42% of it goes to cops and rangers.

Mayor Mathews has declined to clarify when public comment will be allowed. I’ve sent her an e-mail asking her to correct this problem, but so far she hasn’t responded.

To address the real problems in the police departments generally, I suggest taking a long hard look at Black Lives Matters’ proposed reforms at http://www.joincampaignzero.org/solutions/#solutionsoverview . My suggestions for meaningful police reorganization are at http://www.indybay.org/uploads/2014/12/13/flyer__for__12-17.pdf

The Social Service component of the budget is less than $2 million.

For the 46th night, unhoused folks and their supporters will gather for soup (thanks to India Joze), coffee, and company through the night. Last week there were no tickets issued in spite of harassment driving poor people from the bricks and City Hall courtyard onto the sidewalk, where none have been prosecuted for sleeping.

Robert Norse (the author of this piece) is still facing charges for MC 13.04.011–being in a park after dark. This charge was widely used against Freedom Sleepers last summer and fall. I went to court on Friday and had my demurrer dismissed with a trial set for 10 AM on June 24. Motions hearing will be 10 AM June 17th in Dept. 1.

Though an original Freedom Sleeper, I am now simply writing and reporting. Hats off to activists Abbi Samuels, Zav Hershfield, and others who are holding down the protest each Tuesday. Support them in any way you can or propose new actions to end the Sleeping Ban!

Continue reading

Action Against Police Abuse in San Francisco; Slumber in Santa Cruz…and the Rest of the Rant on the “Vanish the Vendors: Law Coming up at City Council 5-24

SFPD:  Direct Action and the Police Murder of a Third Man Got the Resignation of Police Chief Greg Suhr; SCPD: Continuing Stonewalling on Public Records; Yet More Rant & Review Covering Last Council Meeting’s Passage of the “Vanish the Vendors” Law, Coming Up Again for a Final Reading shortly after 2:30 PM Tuesday May 24th in City Council Chambers. 

The show broadcasts at 101.3 FM and streams on the internet at freakradio.org at 9:30 AM – 2:30 PM (May 22).  It will archive at http://www.radiolibre.org/brb/brb160522.mp3.

Thursday’s Bathrobes Show 6-8 PM features Continued Raging Against the Vanish the Vendors Law

 Caustic Criticism of the Upcoming Final Vote on the “Vanish the Vendors” Law at next Tuesday’s City Council meeting.
An update from Wes White on the Salinas Sleep-Out.   More bits and pieces.

The show broadcasts at 101.3 FM and streams on the internet at freakradio.org at 6-8 PM (May 19th).  It will archive at http://www.radiolibre.org/brb/brb160519.mp3.Go to http://radiolibre.org/brb/   for older shows–as well as the latest show.  To see some of them described go to http://huffsantacruz.org/radio.html
For the really old shows go to http://huffsantacruz.org/archivemain.html.

HUFF pokes out its sleepy head 11 AM Sub Rosa Cafe Wednesday

HUFF will be holding Open House for Vendors, Performers, Tablers, Homeless Folks, and Community Members impacted under the upcoming Vanish the Vendors law coming up on 5-24-16. Other topics likely to surface: Updates from Salinas, Eureka, and other struggles against the Homeless Bans.  Upcoming Freedom Sleeper preliminary (demurrer) hearing on Friday at 8:15 AM for Robert Norse.  And coffee and snacks! 

In the Streets and In the Courts: Freedom SleepOut #45 Persistent Protesters


Growing Numbers At Freedom SleepOut #45? Challenge of Police Citations tin Court 5-20
Date Tuesday May 17
Time 5:00 PM – 5:00 AM
Location Details
Around City Hall at 809 Center St. on the bricks and sidewalk of along the Center St. corridor
Event Type Protest
Contact Name Keith McHenry
Email Address keith@foodnotbombs.net
Phone Number 575-770-3377
With last week’s expanded numbers (See “Freedom Sleepers Continue to Sleep at Santa Cruz City Hall” at http://www.indybay.org/newsitems/2016/05/15/18786432.php) the weekly challenge to the City’s unconstitutional 11 PM to 8:30 AM Sleeping Ban against the homeless approaches its eleventh month. City Council has taken no action to establish any emergency shelter, establish safe sleeping zones, or decriminalize the 1000-2000 homeless people sleeping outside.Local Food Not Bombs workers have added regular afternoon vegan food (with a few side providers supplying more meaty sustenance). Last week’s police contacts there included some harassment, but no tickets.SEALING OFF THE CENTER OF GOVERNMENT
The center of City government, traditionally a constitutionally protected area for peaceful protest 24-hours a day, remained a “forbidden zone” after 10 PM at night with police and security guards patrolling the area and driving homeless people from under the eaves of the buildings where they go for protection from rain and wind. The once spacious grassy lawns have been roped off and replaced with cement and ornamental flowers.

Two citations from last year, one from the first night of the SleepOut on July 4-5 last year will come to court 8:30 AM on Friday May 20th in a preliminary attempt to have them dismissed before arraignment and trial in a demurrer hearing. Robert “Bathrobespierre” Norse was a regular in the early nights of the Sleep-Out. He often wears a bathrobe at protests and in court to dramatize and satirize the City’s attack on the right of the poor to sleep at night. Conviction at trial before a judge typically results in $198 fines.

Almost all citations against the Freedom Sleepers–of which there have been at least a dozen–were issued as violations of MC 13.04.011. This law bans being in “closed area”, which are designated behind closed doors and without public input by the head of the Parks and Recreation [P & R] department.

In 2010 the P & R boss, in private consultation with the police chief and other city bigwigs created made the entire City Hall courtyard and grounds a “No Go” closed zone. The point was to drive away an earlier protest called PeaceCamp 2010, similarly protest the treatment of the unhoused. See “Bad Law Rises Up to Bite the Homeless Again–Parks Boss Steals More Public Space” at http://www.indybay.org/newsitems/2010/08/23/18656639.php .

The Friday 5-20 hearing will challenge MC 13.04.011 on three grounds: that peaceful protest at City Hall at night is constitutionally protected, that MC 13.04.011 itself provides the right to be on a path directly through the area, and that the state’s Public Records (“Brown”) Act requires 24-hour access to City agendas during the period Norse and the other protesters were there. The agendas, then posted only inside the “forbidden” zone, have now been moved to the sidewalk in a belated City move to “fix” the problem and shore up its position in court.

Norse is looking for a lawyer, but will likely speak for himself. The City has refused to drop the charges and declined to provide full audio and video of the police actions. It has already lost one case at trial (though it’s won others) when activist Zav Herschfield argued the posted “do not enter after 10 PM” signs were not visible from the sidewalk.

Homeless Legal Persons Assistance founder and Freedom Sleeper supporter Steve Pleich has assisted Norse in preparing the case.

If Norse loses the demurrer hearing, he’ll likely continue the struggle with a second demurrer hearing, an arraignment, a pre-trial conference, and finally a trial before the judge (juries are not allowed in infraction cases).

Sunday on Bathrobespierre’s Broadsides: a Blow-by-Blow Breakdown of the Vanish the Vendors Law; Snips from Freedom Sleepout #44, Selections from Steinbeck’s Grapes of Wrath, and More !

More than you ever wanted to hear in a moment-by-moment deconstruction of  Assistant City Mangler Scott Collins often misleading description of the unanimously passed Vanish the Vendors law at the May 10, 2016 City Council.   Keith McHenry and Steve Pleich on Freedom SleepOut #44 and the City’s “Steal the Sidewalks” gambit.   Pause with the Pathos of Steinbeck’s story, reminding us that yesterday is today

The show broadcasts at 101.3 FM and streams on the internet at freakradio.org at 9:30 AM – 2:30 PM (May 15).  It will archive at http://www.radiolibre.org/brb/brb160515.mp3.

Free Radio Show Tonight Has “Vanish the Vendors” Ordinance Discussion and Sacramento Attorney Mark Merin: 6 -8 PM

 Interviews with folks in line for a meal at the Red Church speak out on various issues; I interject some preliminary commentary on Tuesday‘s unanimous City Council vote approving harsher restrictions downtown that ban jewelry, hairwrapping, painting a picture, and other traditional Pacific Avenue sidewalk activities.  Sacramento activist and attorney Mark Merin discusses the aftermath of the 3 month long homeless protest there and his move to establish a permitted homeless encampment.

No historical flashbacks this time, but go to http://radiolibre.org/brb/   for older shows–as well as the latest show.  To see some of them described go to http://huffsantacruz.org/radio.html

For the really old shows go to http://huffsantacruz.org/archivemain.html.

The show broadcasts at 101.3 FM and streams on the internet at freakradio.org at 6-8 PM (May 5th).  It will archive at http://www.radiolibre.org/brb/brb160505.mp3.