North Coast Journal


by Judy Hodgson, editor and publisher

Fundamentally what?

Ever listen to KINS radio?

KINS, which also brings the voice of Rush Limbaugh to the North Coast, has a program called "Community Comment," a three-minute segment repeated throughout the day by a one of 10 local commentators. One of those commentators is Robin Arkley and on July 6, Mr. Arkley had this to say:

"Ever read the North Coast Journal? Locally published and has some interesting stuff, although it can be colored as fundamentally hippy. The most recent issue has the lead editorial dealing with the sale of a some ocean dune property, and the publisher expresses outrage that Louisiana-Pacific had the temerity to sell a piece of their (sic) dune property to people that (sic) are fans of dune buggies. The publisher also cuffed former Supervisor Anna Sparks around for her involvement in the sale. The reason for all this being that the publisher apparently feels all coastal property should be owned by some federal agency or their (sic) handmaiden in environmental correctness, The Nature Conservancy. This philosophy sticks with the idea that only the annointed (sic) few may enter these properties. In this case, the truth is that Louisiana-Pacific had the property on the market for several years, and, The Nature Conservancy didn't have any money. It bothers me that when a company like Louisiana-Pacific, who (sic) so strongly support (sic) the entire community, should be criticized for participating in a multiple-use approach for their (sic) assets. ..."


Fundamentally hippy?

I immediately went to the back issues published so far this year to see where he may have gotten such an idea. In January the cover story was a very thorough report on the health of the six major rivers and restoration efforts. Not too radical - and, besides, we also had Ron Ross in that issue writing about grade inflation.

In February, the cover was on local survivors on Iwo Jima and there was a report on children growing up in an increasingly violent world. But - aha! - that edition also had a story on the local psychic industry.

In March the cover story was the health care revolution, certainly a concern to both liberals and conservatives. In April, there was a sports story on a bicycle race, and in May another historical piece on the dredge called the Jupiter.

Maybe it was June - that cover on Dell'Arte. But it was a business story, honest. Dell'Arte is a $600,000-per-year organization that employs quite a few people even if some of them do look a little odd.


Concerning Mr. Arkley's comments on this column last month:

The sale of the dune property caused some strong feelings in the community and anyone commenting publicly should be careful with the facts. I never said, nor do I believe, "all coastal property should be owned by some federal agency ... or The Nature Conservancy." And, we did accurately report that the L-P property was for sale, an offer was made, and that offer was accepted. Those are the facts. It was and is my opinion that the sale aggravated the community's efforts to implement a dune management plan. By the way, the comments and calls we received about the article - from law enforcement, other government agencies and from neighbors of the property - were overwhelmingly positive.

I suspect Mr. Arkley will not particularly like this month's cover story on ecotourism, called "Destination: nature." But this story, too, is really about business and economics. We know that ecotourism is big business internationally. In Costa Rica, for instance, tourism recently surpassed coffee and bananas as the number one industry. And it could have a substantial economic impact on Humboldt County in the future.

Elsewhere in this edition, we have a guest opinion on the jury system written by Eureka attorney Clifford B. Mitchell in response to a previous column by Ron Ross. And we have a remarkable piece by Wally Graves - an exchange of letters, really - about the ethics of dropping the bomb on Hiroshima 50 years ago.


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