How California discriminates against its Seniors (Yes, even Democratic Party seniors)



I wrote this email to Mike McGuire, my CA State Senator:

I am writing this to protest the discrimination against retired people exhibited by the California Legislature in the passage of this bill. Originally, Gov Newsome promised inflation relief for the owners of automobiles in response to the recent inflation of gasoline prices. Now, according to The Sacramento Bee of 9/23/2022, it seems my wife and I will get nothing.  Mr. McGuire why do you hate the elderly?

My wife and I are 69 years old.  We have lived in California for many years, in the Santa Cruz area since 1981, and in Eureka since 2004.

We both paid our  taxes, and for gasoline (incidentally, Humboldt County has the highest gas prices in the entire State, and has had them for well over 20 years).  We pay our automobile license fees every year ($211 in 2022).

I retired early when Gotshalks, my employer, went bankrupt in 2009. I had wrecked my back there (shleping Tempurpedic Mattresses out to customers vehicles) and qualified for disability. In 2015, when I turned 62, disability turned into regular Social Security. Between my wife and I we bring in a total of $2,349 each month – our sole income. Oh, I have a gig creating and maintaining a web site for an Actor friend done in Salinas, but that only increases our income by $50. We have in recent years filed income tax returns, but it is not taxable.

I and my wife are lifelong Democrats.  Neither of us has ever voted for a Republican, and you can be sure we both voted for you in the elections since we arrived in Eureka in 2004.

The Republitards here say we are getting screwed, That the Democrats don’t care about us. That we don’t contribute anything (taxes) so we don’t deserve anything. Is this true?  The conditions of this recent bill sound like it is.

His flapper (Re: Gullivers Travels) replied:


Subject: Gas Prices

Dear Mr. Arseneau:

Thank you for contacting Senator McGuire’s office. We certainly understand your frustration about inflation and gas prices – this is so hard on so many Californians. One piece of “good news:” Seasonal gas prices are just about to drop as we move into the winter blend – often there’s a few weeks of spiked prices as stations pump out the last of costlier summer blend. Here’s more info: The Difference Between Summer-Blend and Winter-Blend Gasoline (

Regarding, the middle-class tax refund. Did you file a 2020 tax return? If so, you can estimate your refund here: Middle Class Tax Refund Estimator | While I understand that you don’t have taxable income, I’m unsure whether or not you will qualify. You can read more here: and call the constituent help line at 800-542-9332, weekdays, 8 am – 5 pm. Overall, the program uses tax returns as a way to issue the refunds expeditiously, and to prevent fraud.

Please be in touch with any further comments or questions! Senator McGuire is working hard on policies and legislation that serve ALL Californians in District 2.


Nora Mounce
District Representative/Communications Coordinator
Senate Majority Leader Mike McGuire
(707) 445-6508

Notice Ms. Mounce’s subject is “Gas Prices.”  But my email had really nothing to do with gas prices. It had  to do with seniors being screwed out of promised money – Seniors on fixed incomes who are  nonetheless paying out of pocket the same as any other Californian.

So she didn’t actually address the subject, but rather danced around it. I’ve already voted for Senator McGuire (I tend to vote my ballot as soon as it arrives in the mail). I can’t take it back.



It happened at Kirtan



Went to Kirtan a couple weeks ago. It was the first one held in two years indoors. Last summer we had a few outdoor Kirtans at Redwood Park in Arcata. This was the first back at Om Shala Yoga Studio. Only four musicians, but maybe the rest will return once things get more established.  The event attracted a pretty good crowd. I counted about 60 people.

It was good. Very, very good.

Then something bad happened. Well, maybe not bad, but very inappropriate. After the end, a lady started circulating a petition for “health choice freedom.” Only it wasn’t about a woman’s health choices. It wasn’t about abortion. It was a petition against mask and vaccine mandates.

I had to hold my tongue when she approached me. You know, I’ve written about this in the past. Back at the height of the pandemic, it was my opinion that the Govt. build some new internment camps.  I would -propose that a fleet of vans be sent out and go door to door, equipped with nurses and National Guardsmen.

The Nurse knocks on the door, “Hello how are you? Have you been vaccinated?”  “Yes, I have.” “Very good. Have a nice day.”

Next stop, “”Hello how are you? Have you been vaccinated?” “No, I haven’t.”  “I can vaccinate you right here, right now.”  “Great, let me have it!.”

Next stop, ““Hello how are you? Have you been vaccinated?” “No.”  “Ok, I can vaccinate you right here, right now.” “No, I don’t believe in that.”  “Ok. No worries,” and then the nurse signals to the National Guardsman to take the person, or persons, into custody. They are taken to an internment camp to live with other unvaccinated people.

I know this isn’t probably a very popular idea, but, “the good of the many outweighs the good of the few.”

But I didn’t confront this woman. Not at Kirtan. I wasn’t going to counter an inappropriate act with another. So I lied. I told her I had signed it at Safeway. She kind of gave me the stink eye. I think she knew I was lying. Well, I wear this red string around my left wrist. It’s to ward off just such a thing.

But – you know? Kirtan is sacred space. Politics should be left outside the door.

I have spoken.