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Comment Archives: stories: News & Opinion: News

Re: “Friends Remember Integral Bay Area Artists, Musicians, and Sound Engineers Still Missing after Ghost Ship Fire

Peter Wadsworth--the only one of the 36 victims who also lived there--was described as an "entreprenuer." I guess there is a pretty low standard for this word in the Bay Area...he apparently had nothing but a nascient business idea for cannibis salsa and he was living in this cheap illegal flophouse.

How did this "genius" actually make a living to support his rock and roll lifestyle? Where did his funds come from?

I have read eveything I can find on this tragedy...trying to follow the money...looking for actual fiscal clues to the funding of these rock and roll lifestyles amid blah blah blah "tributes." What is important remains hudden...the money trail that made these unproductive artsy party lifestyles work.

Many of the victims were students...more public money. Loans to make them productive and tax paying citizens. Loans that will never get paid. No federal student loans or grants should ever go for useless majors like "communications." These are disguised arts grants and social welfare. These are student loans that pay for four years of partying.

The people who were DJ's that night...are we supposed to believe those jobs were enough to SUPPORT them?

No. Look for other fund sources such as SSI...food stamps...unemployment insurance...Section 8.

The rent Derick collected...document every penny of where it went.

Posted by Charles C. Eroster on 12/10/2016 at 3:59 AM

Re: “Friends Remember Integral Bay Area Artists, Musicians, and Sound Engineers Still Missing after Ghost Ship Fire

Charles seems like a total troll. Seems like he judges these victims without any real knowledge. jumping to all kinds of conclusions. there is a special place for know it all a-holes like him. He has shown who his is.

Posted by Andy Kleiber on 12/09/2016 at 9:38 PM

Re: “Friends Remember Integral Bay Area Artists, Musicians, and Sound Engineers Still Missing after Ghost Ship Fire

Charles, have you read any of the many memorial articles about the victims?A clarinet teacher, a computer science graduate, radio Djs, a choir singing sheriff's deputy's son, a conservation trust worker, a mortuary employee, a Shazam employee, a classical pianist, a community organizer, a sound engineer, a filmmaker, a psychology grad student, school teacher, art therapist, a DJ, , an MIT grad lawyer, and several artists and musicians. I haven't read all of the obits, but i suspect the list of "real jobs" and accomplishments would grow. It's possible to get your point across without maligning the dead.

Posted by jesse jane on 12/09/2016 at 7:37 PM

Re: “If Oakland Cracks Down On Underground Warehouses, It Will Snuff Out The City’s DIY Soul

I can think of jazz musician Louis Armstrong who worked shoveling filthy coal in New Orleans in a cart pulled by a mule...he played clubs on the weekends and at night. He worked. Worked his butt off to support himself and create an opportunity to make music.

Be an artist as much as you like..but why should society support your lazy butt with disability payments you don't deserve....with food stamps to buy steak while working people pay wages to buy pasta?

Plenty of people work responsibily while trying to also be artists. They don't live in illegal spaces full of drugs...they don't lie to get free money from the givernment...they don't collect money to pay for needed fixes and then party in Bali.

Name them. One by one. And explain how they paid for their rock-n-roll lifestyle.

Posted by Charles C. Eroster on 12/09/2016 at 6:04 PM

Re: “If Oakland Cracks Down On Underground Warehouses, It Will Snuff Out The City’s DIY Soul

To all the people in these comments so callously disparaging the artists, the dead, the warehouse spaces, the partiers, etc as being immature children scared of the "Real World":

Just because you yourself don't understand the value of local art and art spaces, it doesn't mean it's not meaningful and important.

Think of your favorite musician. They could have started their career in an art-house just like Ghostship or the dozens of others here in the Town, and squares just like you probably mocked them endlessly: "Stop pursuing this childish music stuff and get a real job!" Thank god they didn't listen.

Don't drag us all down to your level of banality. Go back to the suburbs if you want a predictable, "sensible" lifestyle where everyone has a "grown-up" job, a cubicle, a white picket fence, a two-car garage, a nice big TV to watch the football game. You keep working on the GDP, we'll keep making music and art that brings people joy. Both are important.

Posted by Max Chanowitz on 12/09/2016 at 3:29 PM

Re: “If Oakland Cracks Down On Underground Warehouses, It Will Snuff Out The City’s DIY Soul

It is so haaaaard to "survive" and be an artist without stealing water and electricity and getting free food, free Obama phone, free medical care...

Art is not a neccessity. Like FIREMEN are a neccessity. Was a GROWN UP not in charge at the mayor's office? How were they short 92 firemen...short of building inspectors....the building literally didn't appear in the inspection database for fire inspections.

Yet complaints including fire safety complaints were made. Were these complaints buried to protect the precious fringe artists and the "scene?" Even at the level of city officials and inspectors...where were the GROWN UPS??!!

Posted by Charles C. Eroster on 12/09/2016 at 1:40 PM

Re: “NBC Paid for Ghost Ship Operator Derick Almena's Hotel Room During Exclusive Interview

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PDBOwPORHGU

Posted by Che' Pressnall on 12/09/2016 at 10:50 AM

Re: “If Oakland Cracks Down On Underground Warehouses, It Will Snuff Out The City’s DIY Soul

Ladies, Gentlemen and all other gender non-identifiers, in the the person of JohnNoMoniker, I give you, what I am now calling the the alt-left.

Every bit a poisonous as the alt-right and it's figure head the new POTUS. Every bit as self centered, name calling and uninterested in solutions.
Swaddled in the the fuzzy language of "safe spaces", "complicated existence", holding these concepts as dear only to themselves, granting none to others.

BTW, forget food stamps, SSI and all the rest of those... Let's talk about those who decry how corrupt society is, scream for it's destruction while drinking clean water from a tap, using electric power from the wall for their Macbooks, iPhones, DJ dance parties and just in general enjoying the benefits of a non-primative, brutish existence free from large meat eating animals that would doubtless enjoy them as a a snack. All the while behaving as if anonymized destruction wrapped in outrage improves things.

disgusting

Posted by Bruce Ferrell on 12/09/2016 at 10:09 AM

Re: “Friends Remember Integral Bay Area Artists, Musicians, and Sound Engineers Still Missing after Ghost Ship Fire

How did they afford their rock and roll lifestyle?

Posted by Charles C. Eroster on 12/09/2016 at 7:18 AM

Re: “Friends Remember Integral Bay Area Artists, Musicians, and Sound Engineers Still Missing after Ghost Ship Fire

Which of the 35 adult victims had real jobs?

Posted by Charles C. Eroster on 12/09/2016 at 4:06 AM

Re: “Friends Remember Integral Bay Area Artists, Musicians, and Sound Engineers Still Missing after Ghost Ship Fire

This is the kind of guy who sits around judging everyone around him while probably hiding kiddie porn in his basement.

Isn't that a hummer in your profile pic? Talk about responsibility! You probably love driving up to your local McDs for a welfare meat big mac (subsidies is welfare, mind blowing huh?) before heading over to Wally-world so you can support the welfare system you despise so much by shopping at a place whose employees are so low paid even at full time they still need food stamps, and whose products are made by children in other countries instead of by Americans.

Oh, and I'm sure you also hate the members of the armed forces who are smoking pot to deal with the PTSD they got watching their friends get blown up for your oil you love so much who also happen to get food stamps.

Yeah, you have the right to judge, sure.

You have no idea what a fool you are, your hero Trump is getting extra security to accommodate his needs that is going to cost more than food stamps all together for a WHOLE YEAR and still all you will spout is nonsense.

Posted by Patrick L. Bertlein on 12/08/2016 at 10:15 PM

Re: “If Oakland Cracks Down On Underground Warehouses, It Will Snuff Out The City’s DIY Soul

What was Derick Almena's real job? Collecting SSI for being bipolar? Growing pot? Collecting food stamps and the earned income tax credit for 3 kids who half the time were dumped off with relatives, foisted upon underpaid and cheated baby sitters or actually in the custody of Child Protective Services?

Among the 35 adult victims NO WAY will you find 35 grown up and paying full time jobs. The ability to live for many surely came from claiming disabilities and sucking the tit of SSI and Food Stamps.

Even now among the survivors some are probably trying to turn this into SSI so they can spend the rest if their life smoking dope and making fringe art while claiming PTSD.

Posted by Charles C. Eroster on 12/08/2016 at 4:52 PM

Re: “Friends Remember Integral Bay Area Artists, Musicians, and Sound Engineers Still Missing after Ghost Ship Fire

We can agree that to some extent the coroner may be able to tell us who was high when they died. That and whatever burned, melted pill bottles turn up in the remains...God have mercy. We can only wait for answers.

To what extent did these departed folks use public assistance like food stamps to fund their rock-n-roll lifestyle? To what extent did Derick and his wife? I bet that hotel room where the kids were staying DURING the fire was paid for by Child Protective Services. Therefore by me the taxpayer while these two partied for months on end and FLY TO BALI ON VACATION. Can you say "depraved indifference"?

What i see is a lot of all play not much work. I can't help but wonder where is the big block of taxpayer funded government cheese which allows the mice to play and party while the rest if us work and obey the law?

Posted by Charles C. Eroster on 12/08/2016 at 4:29 PM

Re: “If Oakland Cracks Down On Underground Warehouses, It Will Snuff Out The City’s DIY Soul

Hopelessly plugged ears and eyes with eyeshades.

This JohnNoMoniker is still unable to engage in a conversation without slurs. And now, ensuring safety and promoting maturity are "capitalistic" in nature and therefore wrong.

I guess he is the troll not to be feed...........

Posted by Michael Good on 12/08/2016 at 3:09 PM

Re: “If Oakland Cracks Down On Underground Warehouses, It Will Snuff Out The City’s DIY Soul

Mr. Good: To be honest, I still consider you a troll, just one that uses the loaded language of a very specific definition of "reason" to push a callous agenda - as evidenced by your comments on this thread and others. A current example: no, I cannot put up dozens of displaced friends in my small living quarters, I wish I could - I would rather they not be displaced immediately from their generally quite-safe current homes because their landlords looked the other way for MANY years with regard to zoning specifics. To suggest nothing else as recourse for them (many of whom are highly marginalized people who will likely end up homeless), and that this is implied as somehow an acceptable outcome, is callous and trollish. Especially when you consider that many of them are currently grieving the loss of loved ones and roomates.

That said, your trollishness is nothing conpared to the likes of Sar Wash above, who simulataneously sent his "prayers" out to the victims of the fire and called them fake artists who don't have "real jobs" (most of the artists I know work other jobs full time and are still poor here). These kinds of comments evidence zero comprehension of the type of collective culture that is under assault here, other than resentment towards it - probably because of its anticapitalist nature as much as anything else. You all should really stop trying to turn Oakland into Walnut Creek.

Posted by JohnNoMoniker on 12/08/2016 at 2:50 PM

Re: “Friends Remember Integral Bay Area Artists, Musicians, and Sound Engineers Still Missing after Ghost Ship Fire

Charles, I can understand why you might assume that, but I can tell you honestly and confidently that they weren't high. I knew many of these people and had gone to many shows with them. They would have been there for the music, not for drugs. The very good music that their friends and community members were putting on for them that night and the chance to be in the company of old and new friends was the draw for them. Just like it has been for me many nights, if I had known so many friends were showing up to this that would have been all the draw I needed to get myself out of the house and go see what everybody was working on and listening to. I'm not trying to claim that everybody who goes to music shows in the world is an angel, but these people specifically were genuinely some of the cleanest, kindest, hardest working and most decent people and artists you would ever meet.

I agree that Derick seems like a genuinely awful person, and I do blame him for setting up this space that my friends couldn't get out of. I think he was too myopic and self-obsessed to take the responsibility that too many good people unwittingly trusted him to have taken.

Posted by daniel mcanulty on 12/08/2016 at 2:27 PM

Re: “If Oakland Cracks Down On Underground Warehouses, It Will Snuff Out The City’s DIY Soul

At a minimum, we need immediate eviction of anyone who is occupying a building without his name being on a formal and legal lease. The only way to honor the victims of this renter and squatters is to shut down all of these warehouses. These fake artists, who refuse to live where they can afford or get a real job, need to take responsibility. Our thoughts and prayers are with the victims of these squatters and this renter.

Posted by Sar Wash on 12/08/2016 at 1:20 PM

Re: “Oakland Warehouse Fire: 'It Was A Tinderbox. I Don't Recollect Anybody Coming Out.'

Here is lack of tact for you from a crusty adult....if Derick and his wife were getting foood stamps then they should be investigated for food stamp fraud on top of all the manslaughter charges and code violations.

I would wager Derick flees the country and leaves the wife holding the bag. Anybody remember Martin Pang and the Seattle warehouse fire circa 1997?

Brazil. He fled to Brazil.

Detain this guy ASAP

Posted by Charles C. Eroster on 12/08/2016 at 11:42 AM

Re: “Friends Remember Integral Bay Area Artists, Musicians, and Sound Engineers Still Missing after Ghost Ship Fire

Kites.i meant to say "high as kites" not "high as kits."

Posted by Charles C. Eroster on 12/08/2016 at 11:01 AM

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