Pirate Laureate of the High Desert Outback of the American Dream


Site map
SITE NAVIGATION TIPS: When all else fails, read the instructions

Je Suis Charlie

"Media is the plural of mediocre."
— Jimmy Breslin (1928-2017)

Get ahead of corporate-influenced news—>Subscribe to Barbwire Confidential

¡Viva Chávez!
César Chávez Celebration XVI / Celebración de César Chávez XVI
Saturday 31 March 2018
/ Sabado 31 de Marzo 2018

Highlights from the record-breaking 2017 event at Circus Circus Reno

All the news you never knew you needed to know—>Subscribe to Barbwire Confidential

   Everybody knows the dice are loaded.
Everybody rolls with their fingers crossed.
   Everybody knows the war is over.
Everybody knows the good guys lost.
   Everybody knows the fight was fixed.
The poor stay poor, the rich get rich.
   That's how it goes.
Everybody knows...
Everybody knows the scene is dead
   But there's gonna be a meter on your bed
That will disclose
   What everybody knows...
   Everybody talking to their pockets.
Everybody wants a box of chocolates
   and a long red rose.
   Everybody knows. Everybody knows.
That's how it goes.
Everybody knows.

I hope you understand I just had to go back to the island.
Leon Russell, 1942-2016

2018 Nevada Press Association first-place award-winner (one of three)

Busted at the Legislature
Fear & Loathing @ the Ledge
Barbwire by Andrew Barbáno / Expanded from the 4-18-2017 Sparks Tribune / Updated 4-20, 4-21, 4-22, 4-23, 4-25 and 4-28-2017 & 10-4-2018
Expansions in blue. Much more follows. Stay tuned.

Maybe the following can save some lives.


Support Don Dondero next
Note: Alas and alack, Dondero did not make it in 2015 or 2016.
Make this the year!

Barbwire wins 7th Nevada Press Association award


6-pack: BRONZE 2014
Hopelessly trying to win an earthquake / 4-18-2013

The 2013 Loony Tunes Legislative Lexicon / 5-30-2013

The politics of media ga-ga boosterism / 3-20-2014

We Don't Need No Education—> Neverending Barbwire Series

Watch for show times.
Help us get the word out.

Support the project at

Reruns on Carson-Dayton 226

Additional programs
on Boulder City cable. Go to and then
go to the BCTV link.

If Reform Fails: Health Care, Jobs and Unions — new power to the people on the public airwaves

The program premiers were available to every television set in the region because of a high-mileage media hybrid.

The shows appeared on both commercial and community stations. The non-corporate entity produced the events, commercial TV greatly expanded distribution.

Thus began an ongoing series of sane public interest programs which generate both entertaining heat and more than a little light.

Please spread the word and consider contributing to the cause online at ReSurge.TV.

You may also take the public option known as the U.S. Postal Service and send a check or money order to ReSurge.TV, P.O. Box 10034, Reno NV 89510.

Your contribution will help fund the distribution as well as ongoing efforts at developing new media, including a regional, non-corporate community radio station and the return of community television to Reno-Sparks-Washoe.

You are present at the creation of what I hope can become a new media model where the programming accurately reflects what's happening on the ground and the media impact is powerful enough to forcefully pass the message upward.


Be well. Raise hell.


Click here for selected on-demand re-runs from the Barbwire.TV archives

15-year overnight success

Daily Sparks Tribune 2-10-2008

The Barbwire's Greatest Hits
Highlights from radio days
mp3 file

Tomorrow's news today —> Subscribe to Barbwire Confidential

For the sin of wearing a hat at the Nevada Legislature, I was 86'd from the Assembly chamber last week. What should have been a comical occasion, worthy of United Airlines passenger jokes, instead served up serious warnings.

As Congressman Ruben Kihuen began addressing a joint session in the Assembly chamber, a uniformed officer behind me said "Sir, would you please remove your hat."

I told him I'd rather leave.

I tried to take his photo but the nearby senate sgt.-at-arms stopped me. As I walked toward the assembly door, I informed journalist Jon Ralston that I'd been 86'd for millinerian misbehavior. Jon wryly expressed agreement. I didn't notice the officer following me until I got outside.

"You have not been 86'd," he asserted. "I asked you to remove your hat and you chose to leave," said he.

"Use whatever words you want, but please answer a question," I stated.

"Do you require the same of women?"


"That's fair," I said and shook his hand.

Lobbyists later guffawed, noting that longtime Nevada Taxpayers Association Director Carole Vilardo was famous for wearing her trademark hats throughout the building. I could find only one published rule, turning off cel-phones. The assembly secretary has not responded to my messages.

Covering female heads is an ancient symbol of subjugation: "A man ought not to cover his head since he is the image and glory of God, but woman is the glory of man," according to male chauvinist St. Paul in 1 Corinthians 11.

I always object to objectification.

The fabled Man on Fire added "...for man did not come from woman, but woman from man; neither was man created for woman, but woman for man. It is for this reason that a woman ought to have authority over her own head, because of the angels. Nevertheless, in the Lord woman is not independent of man, nor is man independent of woman. For as woman came from man, so also man is born of woman. But everything comes from God. Judge for yourselves: Is it proper for a woman to pray to God with her head uncovered? Does not the very nature of things teach you that if a man has long hair, it is a disgrace to him, but that if a woman has long hair, it is her glory? For long hair is given to her as a covering. If anyone wants to be contentious about this, we have no other practice—nor do the churches of God."

BETTER CALL SAUL. Saul of Tarsus, former passionate executioner of Christians, went on to become the world's first and most famous conversion therapy case and best-selling author. Alas, the procedure was still in beta-testing back then and he apparently came out hating girls. Side effects, always those pesky side effects.

REALITY CHECK. It's good to keep in mind that the Blessed Virgin Mary, Mother of God, wears a hijab in all those paintings and statues all over the world. The hijab has been banned in France. Don't know about the paintings and statues at Cathedral Notre Dame or The Louvre. Don't know if Saul/Paul ever met Jesus' mom.

BACK TO THE FUTURE. After shaking it off with security, I meandered by the press room occupied two Gomorrah South reporters. I related my hat story and one guy opined that only people carrying guns should be allowed to wear hats at the ledge. He noted that some unidentified lawmakers and others were regularly packing heat.

"Are you carrying a gun?" he queried. I said no. "Then take of your hat!"

Only then did I turn to notice another security guard.

"Are you following me?" I asked.

He responded only that there is video surveillance throughout the legislature and demanded to know my business.

I said I was a Nevada citizen in a public building. He then insisted to know if I was done with my business.

Zounds. I was being interrogated.

SKULKING WITH INTENT TO LURK. I tried to figure out why I had aroused such suspicion. After all, I was wearing the official legislative male uniform, an undertaker black suit. Perhaps it was all the lapel pins promoting my proclivities: NAACP, Nevada Press Association, Nevada State AFL-CIO and César Chávez's United Farm Workers Union. Maybe my signature Greek fisherman's hat marked me as a suspicious character, skulking with intent to lurk. Perhaps I fit a criminal profile, as I am of olive-skinned Mediterranean descent. Perhaps security had been briefed to look for anomalies.

DRAWING A CROWD. I was apparently becoming an attractive nuisance. Or maybe security didn't have enough to do on a Tuesday. Two more guards soon filled the doorway about five feet from me. Big Sarge demanded my press credential. I informed him that it was my first day there and the credential office was closed. He ordered me out of the press room.

I was chilled by the faces of the armed officers, buck fever arousal like hunters ready to pounce. I was glad I was not a Sikh wearing a turban.

Responding to my subsequent inquiry, Legislative Counsel Rick Combs e-mailed that any public building employee, elected or otherwise, who has a valid concealed gun permit can bring firearms inside.

"Paragraph (b) of subsection 3 of NRS 202.3673 applies to the Legislative Building because we have signs posted at the public entrances that indicate that firearms are prohibited in the building without the approval of the Director," Combs stated. "However, paragraph (c) of subsection 4 also indicates that a CCW permittee (someone with a concealed weapon permit) who is 'employed in the public building' is not prohibited from carrying a concealed firearm while he or she is on the premises of the building even when the signs prohibiting firearms are present. Legislators are considered to be employed in the building and are therefore authorized to concealed carry if they have a permit authorizing them to do so.

"NRS 218A.905 specifically prohibits a person from possessing a firearm in the Legislative Building 'without legal authority.' I have attached a copy of NRS 218A.905 to this response as well. Possession of a permit to carry a concealed firearm is one type of legal authority that allows a person to carry a concealed firearm in the Legislative Building. There is no specific legal authority for a Legislator to open carry a firearm or to possess an explosive, dangerous device or deadly weapon in the Legislative Building, so NRS 218A.905 would prohibit a Legislator from doing so," Mr. Combs concluded.

The building has no metal detectors. Combined with unspecified persons in the building carrying guns, I understand uptightness. Somebody's gonna get hurt in that toxic environment. Eventually defrocked Assemblymember Steven Brooks, D-Las Vegas, was free to carry a gun into the 2013 session despite having made blood-curdling threats against Speaker Marilyn Kirkpatrick, D-Las Vegas.

NRA supporter Lt. John Weinstein of Virginia's NOVA college described the dangers of civilian concealed weapons carriers in a tense situation: "At around 150 to 175 heartbeats per minute, you start to lose your peripheral vision, lose your auditory acuity and your body goes into survival mode...My hands are shaking...I don't know who's on either side of me, I have audio exclusion and now I'm going to take a shot? That chances are greater that you're hitting another evacuee," he told Rolling Stone. (6 April 2017)

Whenever somebody like a congressman is in-house, the ledge blocks off the adjoining street as they had done that afternoon.

Under such glaringly insecure working conditions, legislative guards are understandably on a razor's edge. It's time for metal detectors, better training and safety standards before something horrendous happens. And remember, as future Nevada Chief Justice Charles Springer said when he ran for governor in 1970, better pay begets better police officers.

As I left the building, a Republican lawmaker complimented my hat. If this column results in fewer guns and more security in the capital complex, I'll happily doff my cap.

No hard feelings guys. For the record, the business for which I came to Carson City involved placing flowers on the graves of my wife and step-daughter

Requiescant in pace.

Be well. Raise hell. / Esté bien. Haga infierno. (Pardon my Spanglish.)
Andrew Barbano is a 48-year Nevadan, editor of and first vice-president of the Reno-Sparks NAACP. As always, his comments are his own. E-mail <> Since 1988, Barbwire by Barbano has originated in the Sparks Tribune, where an edited version of this column first appeared.


END OF TIMES SURVIVAL KIT. Defend yourself with humorous or humorless but always-peerless predictions for 2017 by subscribing to the Barbwire Confidential News Service.

Last year's dark foreshadowings unfortunately became reality. I thus suggest inoculation by signing onto the HushHush! list at BallotBoxing.US/ It's cheap as well as enlightening entertainment

Subscribe today to get the exclusive End of Times Retrogression, a Procession for Progression, an Obsession to relieve Depression, Proselytizing Prayer for Divine Intercession at the Legislative Session. Don't wait— procrastination is the devil's dislocation. Hie thee hence to BallotBoxing.US/

THE GOOD DON. Nominations are afoot for the Nevada Press Association Hall of Fame.
Time to ramp up for world-famous Tribune photographer Don Dondero. Here's the compelling case for his induction.

TOMORROW'S NEWS TODAY: FEEL UP YOUR FIRE METER. The Reno Gazette-Journal did big spreads on three consecutive Sundays (Sept. 14, Sept. 21 and Sept. 28, 2014) on NV Energy smart meter fires. Welcome aboard. Barbwire readers were two years ahead on the fire meter issue. (Touch a Smart Meter, Go to Jail — 11 October 2012)

FIRE METER UPDATES: THE NEVADA FIRE MARSHALL'S INVESTIGATION concluded "don't worry, be happy." I'm still worried and will continue fondling NVE's precious equipment —> If your smart meter feels very hot, not just from sunshine, call 911. In its Sunday 21 Dec. 2014 front page headline major story, the Reno Gazette-Journal published results of the NVEnergy-commissioned "don't worry, be happy" echo study. On 1-27-2015, the RGJ published an analysis based on veteran reporter Anjeanette Damon's review of more than 1,000 pages of documents.

bottom line: NVE handles this like auto manufacturers handle defects —> It's cheaper to pay legal settlements after people are injured or killed than to fix the problem.

Don'tcha worry 'bout a thing! If you can't trust your power company, whom can you trust?

Smoking guns: Rooftop solar assassination Energy War Room

DIDN'T THEY MAKE A MOVIE CALLED "THE INCREDIBLES"? On 2-6-2015, the RGJ reported that the Public Utilities Commission has ordered NVE to hire an independent laboratory to review the material.

UPDATE: The report said all is well. I still recommend feeling up your fire meter on a regular basis.

ANTE INTO THE GAME: Support the new season of Barbwire.TV by putting your money where my mouth is. A thousand thanks to those who keep sending show suggestions.

"Media is the plural of mediocre."
— Jimmy Breslin (1928-2017)

  Stay tuned.

  I encourage you to donate to the cause at Barbwire.TV/ The medium that shapes public opinion needs at least one refuge where it is not filtered through the distorted green eye shades of prissy corporate accountants for whom profit is the only priority; where self-censorship is the journalist's normal work environment and where all sins of omission are tacitly encouraged and forgiven with the wave of a balance sheet. This is important. We've got a lot of work to do.

Get ahead of corporate-influenced news—>Subscribe to Barbwire Confidential

Be well. Raise hell. / Esté bien. Haga infierno. (Pardon my Spanglish.)

Andrew Barbano
is a 48-year Nevadan, chair of the Nevada César Chávez Committee, producer of Nevada's annual César Chávez Day celebration, first vice-president and political action chair of the Reno-Sparks NAACP, labor/consumer/civil rights advocate, member of Communications Workers of America Local 9413/AFL-CIO and editor of and and As always, his opinions are strictly his own. E-mail Barbwire by Barbano has originated in the Sparks Tribune since 1988.

Peruse the Underbelly of the News —> Subscribe to Barbwire Confidential

Betty J. Barbano
2-7-1941 / 12-27-2005

SITE NAVIGATION TIPS: When all else fails, read the instructions | U-News | Bulletins + Almanac
Casinos Out of Politics (COP) | Sen. Joe Neal
Guinn Watch | Deciding Factors
| BallotBoxing.US | Barbwire Oilogopoly Archive
Barbwire Nevada Corporate Welfare Archive
Annual César Chávez Celebration
War Rooms:
Banks, Cabbies, Cabela's/cabellyup, Cable TV, Cancer Kids/Mining, Energy, Food, Health Care, Resurge.TV/consumers, Starbucks, Wal-Mart
We Don't Need No Education
Search this site | In Search Of...


Copyright © 1982-2018 Andrew Barbano

Andrew Barbano is a 48-year Nevadan, editor of and; and former chair of the City of Reno's Citizens Cable Compliance Committee. He is producer of Nevada's annual César Chávez Day celebration and serves as first vice-president, political action chair and webmaster of the Reno-Sparks NAACP. As always, his opinions are strictly his own. E-mail

Barbwire by Barbano moved to Nevada's Daily Sparks Tribune on Aug. 12, 1988, and has originated in them parts ever since.
Whom to blame: How a hall-of-famer's hunch birthed the Barbwire in August of 1987
Tempus fugit.

Site composed and maintained by Deciding Factors, CWA 9413 signatory

Comments and suggestions appreciated. Sign up for news and bulletins