Chico cops kill Spongebob Squarepants: Last week’s online version of the Chico Enterprise-Record included a political cartoon that only could have been, in the words of one caller to this paper, “hacked onto the Web site.” The cartoon in question (shown here) lampoons the way city officials approached this year’s Halloween jitters and features Chico police officers chasing, beating and possibly even killing famous cartoon characters. The jackbooted cops are kicking and clubbing Stan from South Park, chasing and clubbing a crude-looking Superman and standing over a prone and possibly dead Spongebob Squarepants.

The cartoon carries a banner that says: “We said don’t come downtown. Respect our authority!” and “Chico is our town! Stay the @#%& out!!!” The political comment strays far from the paper’s normally predictable and bland sense of humor.


David Little was unavailable for comment. The reporter at the paper we talked to said he had not yet seen the site. When he pulled it up he agreed that it must have been the work of a hacker. “I don’t ever look at the online version,” he said.

But later that day another E-R reporter told us the cartoon had indeed been placed there by E-R employees—“the young guys” who maintain the Web site—and that it would be removed only if there were complaints.

This week the online cartoon, which is on an electronic page called “Editorial Observation,” returned to the paper’s standard (and corny) form of humor, featuring a decidedly less cutting-edge tableau: the state of California expressing relief as the fires in its southern tip are doused by a firefighter and a cloudy face spitting rain.

Yer not from ’round here, are ya?: The Oroville Bill of Rights Defense Committee was given a predictably cold shoulder when it brought its anti-Patriot Act petition before the Butte County Board of Supervisors’ Oct. 28 meeting.

First members were told, in a letter from county CAO

Paul McIntosh , there would be no place for them on the agenda, as federal legislation is “not a matter under the jurisdiction of the [board].” So about 14 of them showed up to speak at the designated public-comment period, committee leader

Lesley Kuykendall said. The board listened politely while they spoke, even though there was almost no one left in attendance at the meeting.

Afterward, as the committee was leaving the administration building, Chico Supervisor

Mary Anne Houx approached Kuykendall, who has a thick New Zealand accent, and asked where she was from.

“I like to make light of it, so I told her, ‘I’m one of those terrible aliens,’” Kuykendall said, to which a straight-faced Houx reportedly replied, “Well, I hope you’re legal.”

The committee is considering how to raise awareness about the federal Patriot Act, which members say undermines civil liberties. At this point, though, Kuykendall admits the group “is not actively moving forward.”