Pirate Laureate of the High Desert Outback of the American Dream


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Je Suis Charlie
"Our republic and its press will rise or fall together." — Joseph Pulitzer

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

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   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.

By Leonard Cohen and Sharon Robinson.
© 1988 CBS Records, Inc.

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



Series of measures protected renters from NV’s harsh eviction laws. Not anymore.
By Michael Lyle / Nevada Current 12-11-2023 / Also appeared in Reno Gazette-Journal 12-17-2023

Last Chance Joe meets Sherlock Holmes
Barbwire by Andrew Quarantino Barbáno / Expanded from the Sparks Tribune 11-15-2023

Upsy daisy Nevada crazy
New renters' rights organization tries again
Barbwire by Andrew Quarantino Barbáno
Expanded from the Sparks Tribune 11-8-2023

Republican Nevada Gov. Giuseppe Lumbago vetoes pro-tenant bills despite warnings of impending homeless crisis

Eviction court shows aftermath of expiring protections
By MIchael Lyle / 7-21-2023
The above item also appeared in the 7-26-2023 Reno Gazette-Journal

Culinary Union supports AB340 reforming evictions
Culinary Union Local 226 President Ted Pappageorge / 3-29-2023
6-22-2023: The bill passed both houses strictly along party lines and was among many vetoed by Gov. Giuseppe Lumbago at the 11th hour on June 16.
Google for "rent measures fail 2023" to read the full sad story of the damage Gov. Giuseppe Lumbago foisted onto the humble, the elderly and the weak.

Bill would regulate mobile home park rent increases
Sen. Skip Daly's SB275 would prevent manufactured home park landlords from raising rents higher than the “maximum annual rent increase percentage."
Reno Gazette-Journal / 3-29-2023

The ghost of legendary Reno Mayor Barbara Bennett returns
Sen. Skip Daly picks up the torch for the little people
Mobile home park residents urge lawmakers to stabilize rents: ‘We are in dire need’
By Michael Lyle / Nevada Current via / 3-28-2023
6-22-2023: Daly's SB275 passed both houses on strictly party lines but was vetoed by the governor on June 16.
Google for "rent measures fail 2023" to read the full sad story of the damage Gov. Giuseppe Lumbago foisted onto the humble, the elderly and the weak.

Recurring revolutions and tent control
Barbwire by Andrew Quarantino Barbáno
Expanded from the Sparks Tribune 3-22-2023 / UPDATED 6-22-2023

Bill to rein in rental application and deposit fees weakened before first hearing / 3-10-2023

Culinary Union members speak in favor of renters' rights bill
YouTube video / 3-8-3023

NLV council rules against putting rent cap proposal on ballot
Next step for Culinary Union Local 226 initiative: Court
Sen. Joe Neal sorely missed on his home turf
By Jessica Hill / Las Vegas Sun / 8-5-2022

North Las Vegas rejects Culinary rent-control petition
By Ricardo Torres-Cortez / Las Vegas Review-Journal 8-3-3022

2022 primary candidate positions

The awful truth for the rudely scrude
Barbwire by Andrew Quarantino Barbáno / Expanded from the Sparks Tribune 5-25-2022

Ripoffs, rake-offs, rape & pillage
Barbwire by Andrew Quarantino Barbáno / Expanded from the 5-18-2022 Sparks Tribune/ Updated 5-19 & 5-22-2022 GMT

Barbwire by Barbano: 4-20, 4-27 & 5-4-2022
Rent control legal under Nevada law


Just when you thought there was no good news
Barbwire by Andres Luis Barbáno / Expanded from the 4-25-2018 Sparks Tribune / Expansions in blue
Updated 6-1-2018, 3-21, 4-3, 4-8, 4-11, 4-20, 7-19 & 12-3-2019, 5-19, 6-2, 8-5-2022 & 3-28 & 3-29-2023

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The Dean's List

   The Dean of Reno Bloggers could very well be Andrew Barbano, self-described "fighter of public demons," who started putting his "Barbwire" columns online in 1996 and now runs 10 sites.

RENO NEWS & REVIEW, 11-9-2006

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If you haven't noticed any good news lately, you've come to the right place.

I've often written that if you reflect on your life and wonder how in hell you ended up ensconced in the confines of the High Desert Outback of the American Dream, it's because this place, its people and other resident critters need all the help they can get.

Here's a Barbwire 2-for-1 sweet upper sundae with a cherry on top. Read on.

GOOD NEWS 1. In an overweight nation much more concerned with butt control than gun control, maybe we can split the difference (and perhaps the seams) by unzipping the old taboo of rent control.

Welcome back to back to the future. It's 1978 again. This boomtown is exploding and people are living in tents down by the river. During the casino expansion four decades ago, speculators prowled with suitcases full of cash buying any property, no matter the price. They knew they could flip title in less than a year for a fat return.

Major Rent Raunch
Barbwire 12-4-2019
Reno City Council passes rent control
Barbwire 7-17-2019
MayDay for Renters

Barbwire 5-1-2019
Modest hope for renters still alive in Carson City
Barbwire 4-17-2019 Updated 4-20
Slim rays of hope at legislature

Barbwire 4-10-2019
New legislation introduced
Barbwire 4-3-2019
Rent control introduced in 2019 Nevada Legislature
Barbwire 3-20-2019
Nevada's international shame
The Guardian of London/UK/7-3-2018
Rent & Pillage
Barbwire 5-16-2018

The math was addictive. Buy an apartment house, jack up rents to pay for the financing, then sell when the next guy with a suitcase knocks on your door. Renters in Nevada have never had any rights to speak of. Those that exist are as weak as Kleenex in a hurricane.

I thought it couldn't get worse than '78. Dead wrong. Landlords are now charging people hundreds of dollars just to APPLY for a rental. The going rate is $50 per person. That's $200 upfront for a family of four with no guarantee.

You can get three of your credit reports online for a buck apiece. Landlords buy subscriptions and pay far less than consumers for detailed records. The bandidos are charging half-a-hundred-a-head just because they can.

UPDATE: I am informed that some property managers and rental agencies even charge a fee to process tenant rent payments. Reminds me of an old Robin Hood comic I read as a kid where evil Prince John imposes a tax for breathing English air.

I am calling upon public officials to see what can be done now and what legislation needs to be passed in the 2019 session. This is criminal extortion but legal in this exploitive backwater state in serious need of a consumer advocate like Barbara Bennett.

She came to public notice when she started a campaign for a rent justification ordinance, promptly trashed by the Reno City Council. When established landlords saw rents rising due to speculators, they raised theirs even without increased costs. ("Whatever the market will bear," as Ebenezer Scrooge might say.) The streets and riverbanks took the overflow.

So in honor of the late, great Reno Mayor Bennett, let's start a renters' rights advocacy organization in her name. Volunteers, please call me. Since I'm helping launch a new advocacy organization this week anyway, why not double down?

¡Sí se puede!

GOOD NEWS 2. Tonight, April 25, the Nevada Museum of Art hosts the premiere of Love, Chantal, a docudrama based on the diary of a Reno teen who lost her life to an eating disorder. I tried to get a non-profit started in 2014 when dancer Callie Hutson died of anorexia at 24. I know her family and they tried everything but could not save her.

The same thing happened to local top gun attorney Robert Hager who lost his Chantal at just 19.

Another top gun, Peter Chase Neumann, invited me to a bar association dinner a couple of years ago. As fate would have it, I was seated next to Bob Hager who told me he was producing a film about eating disorders. He called me when the film was done and the rest is history, starting tonight. Admission is free.

Food and refreshments start at 6:00 p.m., film at 7:00, conversation and organizing at 8:00. Just in promoting this event, I've been amazed at finding affected people every time I turn around.

We have formed the Chantal Coalition to educate the public about the warning signs. Eating disorders are the number one killer of American women aged 15-25. Early action brings hope. Volunteer at

¡Sí se puede!

GET OUT THE MARASCHINO. And the vino. Legendary NAACP matriarch and community leader Dolores Feemster is out of the hospital and recovering at Manorcare in Spanish Springs.

She had not been there a day when she ran across a family in crisis and took steps to help. As they still say at Hug High, when somebody's in trouble, call Dolores.

I told her that God apparently has a lot more work for her to do.

¡Sí se puede!

CONSUMER PROTECTION, PART DEUX: How to get a boileroom phone hustler to go away.

Q: "Hello, may I speak to Mr. Barbano?"

A: "Guilty as charged."

Q: (Pause) "Have you committed crimes?" (pause, click)

These guys have no sense of humor.

Probably Republicans.

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

We Don't Need No Education
— The ongoing Barbwire investigative series



Web Extras —> IMPORTANT DATES: Washoe County sheriff candidates forum sponsored by the Reno-Sparks NAACP, ACTIONN and other community organizations. Watch this space.

UPDATE: Looks like there will be two, one on April 30 and another on May 15. Stay tuned.

ANTE INTO THE GAME: Support the new season of Barbwire.TV by putting your money where my mouth is.

Metastasizical Statisticals

Trump FCC chair investigated for Sinclair ties / 2-15-2018

Ready for Trump TV? Inside Sinclair Broadcasting’s Plot to Take Over Your Local News
Its mix of terrorism alerts, right-wing commentary and “classic propaganda” could soon reach 3/4 of the US.
By Andy Kroll/Mother Jones Oct.-Nov. 2017

How Sinclair Broadcasting puts a partisan tilt on trusted local news
By William Brangham/ PBS NewsHour 10-10-2017

Top-down Democrats haven't learned
By Dennis Myers / Reno News & Review 8-10-2017

More Faux than Fox? Corporate octopus Sinclair moves to dominate Nevada and U.S. television
By Dennis Myers / Reno News & Review 8-3-2017

  A thousand thanks to those who keep sending show suggestions.

  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.


END OF TIMES SURVIVAL KIT. Defend yourself with humorous or humorless but always-peerless pontification by subscribing to the Barbwire Confidential News Service. Scandalous bonuses for new subscribers.

Hush Hush!


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

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. I suggest coming aboard now. Subscription prices go up soon. Thank you kindly for your support.

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

Andrew Barbano is a 49-year Nevadan, executive 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 BallotBoxing.US and and As always, his opinions are strictly his own. Check local listings for other Nevada cable systems. E-mail Barbwire by Barbano has originated in the Sparks Tribune since 1988 and received its 8th Nevada Press Association award and 5th first-place at the 30 Sept. 2017 NPA annual convention in Carson City. (That trophy and about six bucks will get you a Latte Mocha Cotsafracas Chingade at just about any Starbux worldwide, guaranteed.)

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Smoking Guns—>
$75 dead or alive: Still crazy after all these years
A mass murderer becomes famous on TV a century later

How come nobody noticed 'til now?
Barbwire by Andrew Barbáno
/ Expanded from the 2-21-2018 Sparks Tribune

Triangle Shirtwaist Factory owners Max Blank and Isaac Harris. Is not Mr. Harris eerily familiar to television junkies?

From the Emmy-winning opening slate of the blockbuster "Cheers" television series. Combined with its "Frasier" spinoff, it lasted 20 years.
The "shirtwaist kings" immigrated from Russia and made a fortune manufacturing "Gibson Girl"-style blouses. (Photo, "The American Experience"/PBS)
The Emmy-winning opening slate of the "Cheers" television series before the "slate" of creators is superimposed. Looks like Mr. Harris' dead ringer (at left) is having a bloody good time.

"Who ya gonna believe, me or your own eyes?" Chico Marx disguised as Groucho Marx in "Duck Soup" (1933)
Back to the story of the 1911 Triangle Shirtwaist holocaust

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Copyright © 1982-2018 Andrew Barbano

Andrew Barbano is a 49-year Nevadan, editor of and; and former chair of the City of Reno's Citizens Cable Compliance Committee. He is the executive producer of Nevada's annual César Chávez Day celebration and serves as first vice-president and political action chair 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.

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

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