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I just have to share the miraculous event of efficient portland policing I encountered this morning. I received a phone call from Dectective Carter about a stolen bike report I filed on 7/20/04. Many of you were there as support people during this trying time (special thanks to Kiku, Allison, and Marilee for keeping me well hydrated during the immediate fall out). Dectective Carter was calling with the glorious news that my bike was found!!! Yes, it's true, it showed up at Ace's Quick Cash and was reported to the Police department on 7/21/04 (one day after it was stolen). He apologized for taking so long to get back to me with this discovery.
Here's the best part. I have two options: 1) Retrieve the bike from Ace's and reimburse the store for what they paid the guy who stole it in the first place ($40) or 2) Wait for the district attorney to prosecute the case, assume the guy will be convicted, and get my bike back after he pays restitution to Ace's - estimated time for this procedure? 18 months!
Louissane still has a vivid picture in her mind of the infernal production line where she worked for almost ten months in the free trade zone located on the Dominican-Haitian border.
"The minimum wage was 432 gourdes (10.50 Euros/12 Dollars) a week. We had to work on production lines of 14 people. If we managed to finish 10,000 items, we could earn 900 gourdes (22 Euros/26 Dollars). But I never managed. It was impossible. At best, 6,000 or 7,000 items, no more."
Louissane witnessed threats of physical violence and verbal abuse on a daily basis "We were often pushed around while we were working. Some women were approached by men who wanted to 'have a chat' with them. They were threatened with dismissal if they didn't allow themselves to be taken advantage of."Haiti Alert - Illegal Arrest of Political Leaders | The Politics of Injustice in Haiti: The Cases of Auguste and Chamblain | Reportback form Haiti: Resistance and Repression Six Months After the Coup
On December 1 Governor Kulongoski presented his recommended budget for the 2005-07 biennium. In determining his priorities the Governor declared six Oregon principles, one of which is to have the basic health, food and shelter needs of Oregon's most vulnerable met. With the state facing a $1 billion deficit the Governor is in a tough position. He proposed continuing OHP coverage for most individual in OHP-plus, but cut dental and vision coverage for adults. The Governor did not put any general funds into OHP-Standard, leaving the program entirely supported by providers and federal matching funds. This means the program would continue to operate with a cap of 24,000. The 25,000 individuals that must be cut before July would not receive coverage, nor is there funding to provide health care to the 50,000 who have already lost coverage. The Governor also proposed reducing prescription drug costs by further managing the prescription usage of OHP enrollees.
The Portland police are hiring 70 new officers. Those can either be 70 more Scott McCollisters and Jason Serys, or 70 decent people. Folks, do you REALLY want to make a difference? How about becoming a cop? Flood their ranks with peaceful people that will not harass bike riders, shoot unarmed people and taser folks in the back. APPLY ONLINE!
We can change this, and make a pretty decent wage while we are at it. You would still have to do regular cop stuff, like arresting wife beaters and chasing people who drive too fast, but you could be the good cops we are always hearing about who don't pepper spray protestors and build nazi shrines.
Mayor-Elect Tom Potter spoke tonight at the Bicycle Transportation Alliance's annual meeting/awards night. Also present were newly elected city commissioner Sam Adams, whom Tom asked to speak first, and the much admired former mayor Bud Clark (who did not speak). Clark, who used to ride his bike to work, was known for his accessibility as mayor, and is credited with helping to make Portland nationally known as a bike friendly city.
Potter pledged to continue to participate in rides around town with the community, and to prevail upon the police to work with the cycling community, including "elements of the cycling community that they currently do not understand," which was interpreted as a promising sign by those of us there concerned about Critical Mass.
As you all know, Alan Graf, a number of other lawyers, and the NW Center for Constitutional Rights (Plaintiff's Lawyers) recently settled a civil rights lawsuit against the City of Portland for police brutality. As a result of that settlement, Alan on 2 December wrote a piece he posted here entitled "Fast Food Activism." The Belmont Law Center publishes here its response to that piece, and the settlement generally.
As you also may know, Paul Loney and Stu Sugarman, aka The Belmont Law Center, have been fighting for various lefty causes since attaining adulthood, in a variety of roles. Since 1992, they have been at the forefront of Green Party politics, run a state wide nonprofit environmental group, fought for legalization of marijuana, defended forests and the environment, and defended animal rights. The Belmont Law Center has defended or helped defend every forest protester, and then every Oregon protester, in criminal court since 1995.
We would like to make it clear upfront we are impressed with the commitment of time and energy by the Plaintiff's lawyers in this case. Only lawyers who have sued the cops and other governmental entities, as have we, can understand the immense amount of work that goes into prosecuting such a case.
In "Fast Food Activism," Alan writes "all of the Plaintiffs and lawyers, other than Lloyd, have committed to funding the Northwest Constitutional Rights Center, a project of the National Lawyers Guild." In fact, Paul and Stu are members of the legal team on this suit but have not committed to funding the NWCRC at this time.
Other settlement stories: [ Team of Activists and National Lawyers Guild Attorneys Bring City of Portland to its Knees (12/1/04) | Katz and Council humbled, but unapologetic about $300k A22 settlement (12/2/04) | Alan Graf's Press Conference Speech rebutted (12/2/04) | Fast Food Activism: Some thoughts from Alan Graf on the A-22 and Iraq war settlements (12/2/04) ]
Tonight (Wednesday Dec. 1st) the Umpqua National Forest held a public meeting on the Steamboat Restoration Project. The proposed alternative will decommission 38 miles of drivable roads and another 34 miles of undrivable roads for a total of 72 miles of road decommissioning (as well as in-stream projects and road improvement.).
The public meeting was held at the usual place, in a meeting room in the public library in Roseburg. But the crowd that came could not all fit - over 200 people showed up, mostly large-sized men with loud voices. There was also the right-wing state senator Bill Fisher, the super right-wing county commissioner Dan Van Slyke, the just elected super super right-wing county commissioner Marilyn Kittleman.
The Forest Service started out by giving a presentation of why they are decommissioning roads -- LSR, Key Watershed, and virtually no money for road maintenance. They can only maintain 27% of existing roads. They did a good analysis of how many acres would have reduced fire protection and mitigated it by keeping some roads open for ATV for fire suppression only. There is another 4,800 miles of roads on the Umpqua NF they are not decommissioning. But the presenter was a young woman with a soft voice that sometimes had to talk over jeers and laughter.
Today, the U.S. government will seek John Graham's extradition to stand trial in South Dakota for the murder of Anna Mae Pictou Aquash. I urge all of you to closely monitor the proceedings and ensure that Canadian authorities thoroughly examine all the evidence presented by the U.S. government in this case.
Never forget the role of U.S. law enforcement officials in incidents that took place in the 1970s on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation. The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) tirelessly tried to prejudice the fair trial rights of American Indian Movement leaders charged with serious crimes during that turbulent period and knowingly presented false evidence to illegally obtain my extraction from Canada in December 1976.
Don't Certify the Votes: Go on record with your Senator This list of 10 Senators are those which I hope to focus lobbying efforts to try and find at least one to protest the certification of the final vote tally in congress. I've set-up the thread with a topic for each Senator, so we can keep track of any feedback from the Senators. I've started a Thread at the forum on DU Here.
On all sides of the political spectrum, limits exist. On the respectable (sic) Right, for example, it's fine to rant and rave about the sanctity of "unborn lives" but not acceptable to post pictures of abortion doctors on your website. The Left, contrary to popular belief, has limits of respectability (sic), too. For example, leftists can get hot and bothered over Bush not reacting to pre-9/11 warnings. However, those who go further and implicate the U.S. government in any way, shape, or form...well, they are banished to realm of "conspiracy theory."
"The seeming paranoia of conspiracy theorists is not necessarily the result of some underlying mental dysfunction or of stupidity," declares Jonathan Vankin, author of "Conspiracies, Cover-Ups, and Crimes." "The dysfunction is with American society, maybe even civilization as a whole. The structure of civilization itself requires mass adherence to faith in the institutions that built civilization and make it run. Conspiracies theorists question those authorities and, because they do, they skirt the fringes of society."
Actively skirting the fringes of society is Sander Hicks, founder of Soft Skull Press and now Vox Pop/Drench Kiss. Hicks gained national notoriety when he published Jim Hatfield's controversial Dubya biography, "Fortunate Son." The scathing, well-documented expose of the Bush dynasty resulted in near financial ruin for Soft Skull, a brilliant film documentary, and Hatfield's tragic suicide. Through it all, Hicks remained focused and ever-searching.
We bring you our second issue of The Firebrand hoping to provide ispiration, discussion, and tools for us rank and file workers who are fighting for a free and equal society. In this issue we have articles that touch on the subject of anarchism, but only as a periphial subject. Yet, to the Firebrand collective and many rank and file militants, anarchism is a guiding force in our actions.
The Firebrand Collective identifies itself as anarchist- communist. To us this means we strive for the abolition of the state, capitalism, and all oppressive social structures. We want to build a world based upon equality and free- dom. A world where decisions come from the rank and file, where we workers run this society; a directly demo- cratic world. We want everyones needs to be met and for everyone to engage in productive and meaningful work to the best of their abilities.
It was great to see Tre in court today [Friday, Dec. 3]. There were 13 supporters filling the whole front row and more. Tre was flashing peace signs and " I Love U" signals the whole time -- behind his back, so the judge couldn't see.
Sadly, the judge did not accept the surety and bond offered. The Crown argued, and the judge agreed, that it has to be someone in BC putting up $200k - $300k in cash or equity. Plus someone who can prove they can "control" Tre and be his "jailer in the community" 24 hours a day.
The bond and surety offered by James, Tre's father in Florida, and Mike here in BC were rejected by the judge. Tre was ordered detained, and he's back in maximum security at North Fraser Pretrial Centre.
I was a teen-ager, so completely uninformed, that I didn't really quite understand how sexual acts were performed. I was a teen-ager with such a crush on an older fellow (A WWII Vet of 28) that I allowed him to do whatever he wanted with me, which hurt a heckuva lot, caused much bleeding and kept him coming to the door. And, of course, I got pregnant. Telling parents was out of the question. Nothing to do but find a way out, ask the right people the right questions, get my older sister to fork up some money, all of which meant --quite literally -- a back-alley abortion.
Inside Boston's Beacon Hill, the streets wind dark and narrow, the houses are ancient. Some are mansions with priceless lavender glass windows dating from the eighteenth century, some are ready to fall down upon themselves, and some appear to have already begun to do so. It is to one of the latter to which I am directed.
A small, dark, foreign-looking man in a business suit answers my knock. "You wait here," he says, and leaves me in a little room with a day-bed kind of couch, covered in dark cordory and occupied by a very large grey cat. There is a saucer of milk on the window sill for the cat, who pays no attention to me at all.
Then, the man comes for me and we go to another room, painted in a dark cream color and outfitted minimally with an examination table, a cabinet and a sterilization tray complete with shiny, lethal-looking instruments. Waiting for me at the foot of the table is a short, squat, bald-headed man wearing surgical scrubs and mask. From behind the mask, he says, "OK, now don't be scared. I'm Dr. A, and t his will be over for you very quickly. It will be painful, because I am not going to anaesthetize you, that is not what we do in these situations. You will have to bear with me, follow all directions and remain quiet, evern when it hurts. Are you ready?"
Blue Mountains Biodiversity Project has been fighting a really flagrant "post-fire salvage" timber sale in Eastern Oregon that is anything but. The really burned areas are just outside the boundaries of the sale, but inside the sale, well, that's what this article is about.
In the summer of 2002, a light ground fire burned through the Malheur National Forest near the Strawberry Wilderness. In small pockets the fire reached the tops of the trees and scorched their crowns. But for the most part, the fire, known as High Roberts, burned through the understory and left the old growth Ponderosa pine, Grand fir and Western larch to live on with only a little surface damage on their base.
Nonetheless, the Forest Service decided the forest needed to be managed. So they pulled a shiny arrow from their quiver of newly-minted Healthy Forest Initiative rules. The rule the Forest Service selected allows salvage logging of dead and dying trees and categorically excludes this kind of salvage project from environmental review or meaningful citizen input. The problem with the project is that the Old growth trees at High Roberts were still live and healthy two years after the fire and they were quite unlikely to die anytime soon.
George W. Bush's trip to Ottawa and Halifax in Canada was met with mass protests and creative resistance this week.
Protestors from Ottawa, Toronto, Montreal and all surrounding areas converged on Ottawa on November 30th in the thousands. The rally began at noon in front of Ottawa city hall. Speakers representing Ottawa city council, unions, the Mohawk nation and many other groups set the tone for the massive march: George W. Bush is not welcome in Ottawa. By the time the march reached its final destination the crowd swelled from about 8,000 to about 15,000, blanketing the large front lawn of the parliament with anti-bush banners, placards and slogans.
In Halifax the march began at about 10:30 or so, to the sound of drumming and chanting. The march made its way towards Pier 21, along the waterfront, where Bush was delivering his warmongering message of the need for more Canadian participation in the "War on Terror" as well as the Ballistic Missile Offense system. It was recognized in advance by many of the organizers that Pier 21 was a set-up for trouble, or even a trap...
even forest activists will face trial on Dec. 6 for trespassing charges stemming from a demonstration last month protesting Steve Wills Logging and Trucking company. Demonstration blocks vital truck route. The demonstration included three separate roadblocks and took place at Fisher Road outside of Hydesville Â the site of the largest anti-logging rally ever held in the history of the environmental movement in the United States.
Of the seven activists arrested, six were charged with infraction trespassing, while protester Kim Starr received a misdemeanor charge of resisting arrest in addition to a misdemeanor trespassing.
"We were ready to get arrested," said Starr. "The sheriffs always act as [Pacific Lumber's] personal goons."
Just after midnight on December 3rd, 1984 Union Carbide's pesticide factory released a dense, white cloud of poison gas into the city of Bhopal and surrounding impoverished neighborhoods. As a cruel result of the gas, people were unable to control their bowels as they ran and choking, pregnant women aborted on the spot. People directly involved in the burial and cremation of the dead estimated that 8,000 died over the course of the first three days following the disaster. Roughly a half a million people were exposed to the gas, who then flooded the hospital. Two decades later, in total, 20,000 people have had their lives transformed into agony and shortened as a direct result of gas poisoning and 120,000 suffer debilitating and chronic ailments to this day. Future generations of Bhopal residents are not free of Carbide's touch either. Cases of birth defects and mental disabilities are widespread among the children of the gas victims.
In January of 2004, I flew to Mumbai, India for the World Social Forum (WSF). I had heard about the previous WSFs held in Porto Alegre, Brazil and made up my mind to go and cover it on the Portland Independent Media Center. WSF 2004 was held in India and not Brazil, as the previous three were. I first read the story of the Bhopal Gas Tragedy on the Corporate Watch website (corpwatch.org). Since I was planning on traveling in India for several weeks after the WSF, I made up my mind that I would seek out people working on Bhopal issues at WSF and see Bhopal for myself.
Dow Statement a Hoax; "Historic aid package for Bhopal victims" a lieToday on BBC World Television, a fake Dow spokesperson announced fake plans to take full responsibility for the very real Bhopal tragedy of December 3, 1984. Dow Chemical emphatically denies this announcement. Although seemingly humanistic in nature, the fake plans were invented by irresponsible hucksters with no regard for the truth.
As Dow has repeatedly noted, Dow cannot and will not take responsibility for the accident. ("What we cannot and will not do... is accept responsibility for the Bhopal accident." - CEO Michael Parker, 2002.) The Dow position has not changed, despite public pressure.
[ DowEthics.com ]
Green Party presidential candidate David Cobb announced today that he would not pursue a recount in Nevada. Cobb and Libertarian Michael Badnarik had made the initial recount request on Monday.
"The Nevada Secretary of State's office presented us with hefty bill and a ridiculous list of tasks to be completed in an unreasonably short period of time," said Blair Bobier, Media Director for the Cobb-LaMarche campaign.
"We were asked to pay $349,000 but were not provided a detailed breakdown of the actual costs and we do not have confidence that our money will be spent wisely."
Judge rules Ohio recount will go forward in all countiesGreen Party presidential candidate David Cobb today expressed his satisfaction with a ruling by a federal judge taking jurisdiction over a Delaware County, Ohio lawsuit and denying the county's attempt to stop the recount of presidential ballots in that county.
"We are very pleased that the judge recognized our right to a recount and that the recount will go forward in each and every county in Ohio," said Cobb.
The judge also provisionally granted the motion by the Kerry-Edwards campaign to intervene in the lawsuit in defense of the position of Cobb and Libertarian Michael Badnarik.
Free Trade is the blueprint for terminal annihilation. Along with the fetishized glory of economic development, corporate invasion rides on the essential involvement of military and paramilitary forces assigned to eliminate entire societies. Those who remain become ill in the contaminated aftermath of resource exploitation of their homelands. Tho activists may be familiar with these two of many impacts of free trade, the growing plague of femicide is often overlooked or ignored as a side issue.
Humanity may well never recover from this carefully planned plunder. The Earth might do quite well in recovering without humans.
The systematic sexual brutalization of women and girls from Sierra Leone to Iraq, Pakistan to Guatemala, Dafur to Colombia, Edmonton to Juarez, The Congo to Chile, Spokane to Afghanistan, The Phillipines to China, Mumbai to San Diego has forced FEMICIDE out of the global closet of taboos. The scope and seriousness of targeting women and girls in horrific ways; rape, forced impregnation, trafficking, torture, sexual mutilation, honor killings and murder, illustrates the failure of truly integrating equality into the fabric of resistance not to mention the overall exclusion by societies and governments of women from dialog that impacts their lives.
Women who dare voice the reality they face as individuals or as communities, risk being lableled as "man haters", "divisive", "having problems with men" or being killed. This has been the case in Juarez and Chihuahua, Mexico where women who speak out against the decade long unsolved serial torture murders of over 400 young women and over 4000 more missing are beaten and killed as well. Police are accused of beating and dismembering Lucha of Chimpimpin, a woman sent by her sisters who had organized against rape and violence there to Juarez to heed the call to stop and solve these heinous crimes. In Colombia, the horrific nature of torture, rapes and murders of women and girls has led the United Nations High Commission on Refugees to compare the situation to that of the similar gender specific attacks against thousands (possibly millions) of women in Sierra Leone, The Congo and Dafur. 3 women who addressed violence women are subjected to as Internally Displaced Persons in Colombia, Marta Cecilia Aguirre, Francis Giron Quilindo and Esperanza Amaris Miranda, have been murdered by armed groups.
Several Medford patrol units responded Thursday night to calls made by Victoria's Secret and the Rogue Valley Mall. An Ashland man was handcuffed and six others detained while an excited Victoria's Secret employee tried to accuse the detained of a variety of crimes. Officers released everyone without charges after about 45 minutes.
About 20 Jackson County residents had gone to Victoria's Secret to highlight endangered forest destroyed to ship more than million panty catalogs a day every day of the year. Forests in northern or boreal reaches of Canada are destroyed to make constantly the soft porn catalogs with zero recycled content, shipped nearly everywhere.
Along with the Medford protest, more than 100 actions took place today at Victoria's Secret stores around the country. Negotiations between the corporation and the San Francisco-based environmental organization ForestEthics broke down earlier this Summer. ForestEthics has promised to organize against the company until Victoria's Secret leads the catalog industry out of endangered forest destruction and into 50% postconsumer fiber within five years.
...and in Eugene...ten of us did cheers in lingerie at the mall's victoria's secret... we did some radical cheers and everyone fell down screaming "outch i'm a tree, stop cuttin on me" under the wrath of two lingerie clad protesters with fake chainsaws.
...and in PortlandThe activists, mostly high-school and college students, stormed into pioneer courhouse square chasing a lingereted "tree" in an attempt to save him from the victoria's secret "logger". Security guards, having been tipped off by a press release from the group Forest Ethics, who planned the day of action, were quick to respond with cameras and violence.
The group rushed outside to put their clothes back on and was chatted at by security guards. The group caught the MAX to Lloyd center to do the same thing. When the first group went in, however, the gates were closed and there were security guards in front. The first group tipped off the second group, who was getting coffee. The second group called Victoria's Secret's HQ to ask what store hours were for Lloyd's Victoria's Secret and they said they would be closed all day.
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