Nominations open for the
Great Dissenters Hall of Fame
from the 6-27-99 Daily Sparks, Nev., Tribune
Agitate, agitate, agitate
They refuse to go away. They are often irritating,
sometimes obnoxious and always louder than civilized people should
I proudly stand with them. They are the activists,
the outsiders, gadflies applying society's pliers to the noses
of the rich, famous and powerful.
Dissenters always pay a price for their compulsion
to crusade. We remain always in their debt.
Herewith is an all-too-brief list of loners, steppenwolves
of the body politic protecting the canaries in the coal mine.
I disagree vehemently with some, but love them
all. They are my kindred spirits, my fellow travelers, driven
to get mad as hell and not take it anymore. I have not included
preachers, politicos and others with community concern in their
job descriptions. That eliminates a lot of good people, but the
following is reserved for amateurs in the original sense, people
involved for love of the cause.
From great dissents are born great majorities,
so here are my nominees (please send me yours) to the Barbwire
Dissenters Hall of Fame.
EDDIE ANDERSON, former Reno bartender and my erstwhile
talk radio colleague, at last report working in northern California
but still based in Reno. Often honored for his community service,
Eddie has long fought for the rights of every minority.
PRO-LIFE ANDY ANDERSON (his legal name), now retired
in North Carolina. In 1990, an enraged Andy barged into Eddie's
radio control room and slugged Eddie right on the air. Neither
man held a grudge and they parted friends. Andy ticked off other
local activists by always showing up at their demonstrations
with his ghastly anti-abortion signs. Many remember his car and
its similar decor.
One day, I was meeting with a radio listener who
had gone bust on his first visit to Reno and needed help to get
out of town.
Andy overheard us talking. Without saying a word,
he reached into his pocket and handed the man some folding money.
RICHARD "SKIP" DALY, lifelong Sparks
resident and workers' rights advocate. "Mayor" Daly
has become a regular at Sparks City Council meetings as a voice
of workers, unionized or not. Daly is a throwback to the days
when Sparks was a union town and the rights of employees were
always taken into consideration by public bodies. Those days
are gone, but may come again thanks to the likes of Skip Daly.
MARY AND CARRIE DANN, Western Shoshones
and rural Nevada ranchers who have fought the federal government
all their lives for the rights of their tribe.
one of the dwindling number of Rewana Farms diehards opposing
Airport Authority land grabs.
Reno government's worst nightmare. The retired jet pilot an publisher
of the Reno Citizen
has caused the Airport Authority and Reno City Council to adopt
three-minute rules in continuing attempts to shut him up. Our
unconstitutional ethics commission recently fined Sam $5,000
for filing allegedly spurious charges against Reno Mayor Jeff Griffin . It will
be up to Sam and his fellow member of the $5,000 Club, Assemblyman
Bob Beers, R-Las
Vegas, to slay in court Nevada's governmental censor of political
speech. (Oldtimers will remember a young Robert T. Beers from
his days as news director of the venerable rock station, KCBN,
25 years ago.)
DAVID FARSIDE has gone from being dissed as a
dissenter to admiration for his thoughtful research, especially
on room tax issues. He succeeded in getting a portion of room
taxes for local use after 30 years of gambling industry diversion.
PATRICIA FLADAGER, former executive director of
Elderport (now Citilift) and former chair of Common Cause Nevada.
The Silver State's version of Mother Jones is still raising hell
THE HANSEN FAMILY of Sparks, sometimes brilliant,
often nutso, occasionally outright bigoted and hateful. But great
T. OUTLAND, U.S. Army-Ret., twice chair of Common Cause Nevada.
OTO acted as a lonely advocate for public utility consumers long
before anyone else got into the game. He is now active in senior
citizens affairs and writes a column for this newspaper.
the young editor of Nevada
Alternet, at the vanguard of the next generation of activists,
web-hip and wired.
HERBERT M. SCHALL, PhD. The ultimate whistleblower
who has been a watchdog for Nevada's mentally disabled for three
self-taught lawyer. On June 21, the Nevada Supreme Court asked
for the complete record of his case against Reno Mayor Jeff
Griffin. Zewadski alleges that Griffin was illegally re-elected
last November because the Reno City Charter states no official
may stand for re-election if his pay has been raised during his
THE FIRE NEXT TIME. When 1,000 people show up
to protest the high-handedness of local government, a revolution's
brewing. Aggrieved residents expressed righteous rage but were
ignored by that unelected government imposingly called the Airport
Authority of Washoe County. This has the makings of another Plumas
Street recall, only exponentially more intense.
Unelected governments like the airport and convention
authorities are controlled by the gambling-industrial complex
to divert public money for private gain.
The poor citizens who showed up last week found
out that they had no elected officials to whom they could complain.
That must change. The convention and airport authorities
control millions in public moneys and hundreds of millions in
public assets. All thereon should be elected officials.
Otherwise, the corporate welfare continues unchallenged.
You will find extensive research on these issues at www.nevadalabor.com
Now, get involved.
Be well. Raise hell.
Barbano is a member of CWA Local 9413. He is a 30-year Nevadan,
editor of U-News
and head of Casinos
Out of Politics (COP). In 1998 he served as gubernatorial
campaign manager for State
Senator Joe Neal, D-North Las Vegas.
Since 1988 Barbwire by Barbano has originated
in the Daily Sparks, Nev., Tribune, where an earlier version
of this column appeared on 6/27/99.