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The US Constitution's First Amendment guarantees the right of free expression including a press free to do it in. In The Creation of the Media, Paul Starr explained how politics in early America assured the nation's postal system would make it possible for the press to grow and thrive. He wrote: "In the 18th century, the idea was that the press could be people's guardian. (It) could help check abuses of power." Unanticipated at the time was how media would develop becoming so concentrated and dominant it would end up "pos(ing) new problems for democracy." Such is the state of things today, and it's led to first time ever changes in postal policy directly subverting USPS' own 215 year history. There is a major crisis in our media taking place right now; it's getting almost no attention and unless we act very soon the consequences for our society could well be disastrous. And it will only take place because it is being done without any public awareness or participation.
the US postal system is implementing "a radical reformulation of its rates for magazines" to place a much larger cost burden on smaller periodicals than on the largest ones standing to benefit from the policy change, with new rates scheduled to take effect July 15 under which small publications will pay postal rates as much as 20% higher than the largest ones in a willful plan to undermine them, weaken media competition further, and "make it almost impossible to launch a new magazine (or other publication) unless it is spawned by a huge conglomerate" wanting to get huger. This new postal policy, crafted "in the dark of night," will adversely affect every small political journal in the nation including those providing the only print source of real news, information and analysis of vital world and national issues many readers rely on but may lose.
Go to www.stoppostalratehikes.com. Sign the letter to the Postal Board protesting the new rate system and "demanding a congressional hearing" with no radical changes until one is gotten. Help spread the word on this to friends and family and get them to act as well - NOW. Important: THE DEADLINE FOR COMMENTS IS MONDAY, APRIL 23. Action is needed promptly.
From PCASC: As May Day approaches, ICE (aka la migra, formerly known as the INS) is picking up their campaign of raids targeting the Latino community. While the aim of these raids is to terrorize immigrant communities and scare them behind closed doors, they have only made people more determined: this May Day we will stand up once again for immigrant and worker rights. See event details below.
Push and Pull: Free Trade and the Immigration Debate
David Bacon and Juan Sandoval, two leading scholars and activists, one from each side of the border, will help us grapple with the complex and controversial issues surrounding free trade and immigration using photos and stories from their years of organizing.
International Workers' Day Celebration on May 1st
When: May 1st 2007, 4:00pm
Related: MayDay background | MayDay2006 | Sin Fronteras Portland '07 Mayday events | Immigrants Rising Archive | Putting it in Writing: Immigrants Rights Coalition Sends Strong Message to Congress | Immigrants: 50,000 March for Immigration Reform 4/7/07 in LA
Following a brief rally in front of the Portland World Trade Center, where Oregon Sen. Gordon Smith has his offices, six of his constituency were stopped by building security at the foot of the escalator and arrested for trespassing. Their only "crime" was wishing to speak to their elected Senator, or one of his aides concerning the Iraq War. This is the ninth time since the first of the year that Oregon citizens have been denied access to their elected official, and there have been numerous arrests over this time period.
The group, Defund the War have made a commitment to pressure Sen. Smith to stand behind the speech he made early in this year, condemning the war and withdrawing his support for it. Quoting Sen, Smith, "I, for one, am at the end of my rope when it comes to supporting a policy that has our soldiers patrolling the same streets in the same way, being blown up by the same bombs day after day."
Should the fact of private ownership trump a citizens right of access to their elected officials? As Peter points out in the video, it is against the law to pass any law denying a citizen this access.
[ Posted to Google at: ] http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=7343996950553706849
Over 150 sustainable organizations and businesses, 3 stages of entertainment, bike rides from 18 starting points around Portland and so much more! An all volunteer-organized event, Earth Day 2007: Planting Seeds of Community will start setting up at Woodlawn Park this Thursday for the event on Saturday, April 21. Please come volunteer and have some fun!
Earth Day 2007: Planting Seeds of Community
Benefit Event for Sea Shepherd Conservation Society featuring Captain Paul Watson's harrowing tales, dinner and live music. At the Pirate's Tavern on Wednesday, April 18 at 8:00pm at the Pirate's Tavern (all vegan restaurant)
Captain Watson, founder of Sea Shepherd has been defending ocean life from illegal pillage and plunder by rogue whalers and marine murderers for over 20 years. Come to the Pirate's Tavern to hear of his adventures on the high seas!
Today peace activists gathered together at Salmon Springs in Downtown Portland on the Willamette and turned the river red to signify the blood of those killed in the latest war for money, power, and control.
"No blood for oil" and "Bring the troops home" banners were dropped and hung from the Hawthorne bridge. Death was everywhere and bloody zombies reminded everyone why they were there.
Here are few photos from the event.
Here is the latest leaflet from the Seattle Anti-Imperialist Committee(SAIC). It is about the role of protests--throughout U.S. history and today--in building mass movements capable of curtailing (and eventually stopping altogether!) the outrageous crimes of the imperialist system. For more information on SAIC (including meeting times), or to post feedback, visit our website at: http://www.seattleaic.org
At a time when many US citizens feel powerless to stop the criminal direction of 'their' government, the examples of revolutionary movements elsewhere give not only hope, but practical education towards organizing a society where humans outrank profit on the list of social priorities. The 'Oaxaca Commune' in Mexico is such an example. The Mexican federal government has taken severe action in repressing this popular movement, but further organizing and revolutionary momentum has already begun. The huge successes of the movement and its continued political evolution should thus be an inspiration for all those interested in social progress. The scant coverage given by the New York Times simply discounted the events as the actions of wayward 'anarchists and protesters'.
A recent event in Portland Oregon highlighted the interest that average people have in the ongoing events in Oaxaca, showcasing the dormant political energy that many are desperately trying to direct into action. On February 4th, an art show was held at Liberty Hall that displayed the revolutionary street art that emerged from the streets of Oaxaca. In Oaxaca, the most widely used art is stencil, practical because it is easily transported around the city and quickly spray-painted onto buildings. The stencil art varies considerably, from mere political slogans to juxtaposed images of past revolutionary figures. The reception to the Portland art show was astonishingó the venue was filled far beyond capacity. The Oaxaca-Oregon solidarity groupó including WIL members who helped organize the eventó used the turnout as a tool for political education: presentations were given about the effects of NAFTA on the region, and how the accumulated discontent paved the way for open insurrection.
A new FDA "guidance" document, published on the FDA's website, reveals plans to reclassify virtually all vitamins, supplements, herbs and even vegetable juices as FDA-regulated drugs. Massage oils and massage rocks will be classified as "medical devices" and require FDA approval.
When it comes to health freedom, this is the FDA's end game. A new FDA "guidance" document, published on the FDA's website, reveals plans to reclassify virtually all vitamins, supplements, herbs and even vegetable juices as FDA-regulated drugs. Massage oils and massage rocks will be classified as "medical devices" and require FDA approval. The document is called Docket No. 2006D-0480. Draft Guidance for Industry on Complementary and Alternative Medicine Products and Their Regulation by the Food and Drug Administration.
The FDA is accepting public comments on the docket until April 30th. 1. Lodge a complaint with the FDA by clicking here, link to www.accessdata.fda.gov. MAKE SURE you include the docket number 2006D-0480. But don't trust this to be enough. The FDA will probably simply delete half the complaints it receives, so don't trust your complaint to actually count. It's important to continue...www.organicconsumers.org
Related: Derailing local food; Proposed new regulations for Portland Farmer's Markets:
Two quick updates: SHAC 7 prisoner Jake Conroy is now off of lockdown, however Josh Harper is still in the hole, Andy Stepanian and Lauren Gazzola have had their phone privileges revoked for six months--and they all need to hear from you! Please keep writing them while they are in prison, even if you don't know them. You can get their addresses at: www.SHAC7.com/addresses2.htm
SHAC7 Shirt Design Deadline EXTENDED!!
Help us make it through the bad months. Attention concerned citizens of Portland. This is a call for solidarity from our community. Laughing Horse Book Collective needs your support. We are a volunteer run radical bookstore and resource for peacemakers, truth seekers, revolutionaries, and all people concerned with the icky state of the world. We've been providing information and meeting space to activists of all kinds for over 20 years.
In order to better serve our community and make it through the slow months, we are asking for you to come buy a book, or 5. :) Give a donation if you can. Small or large, it all goes back into the bookstore, and helps keep us open. We are located at 12 NE 10th Ave, just off Burnside. Keep fighting the good fight and read the good books! Love, Laughing Horse
phone: (503) 236-2893
To make Congress more effective we need to restore the Office of Technology Assessment that the sanctimonious Gingrich got rid of in 1995. Few Americans have heard of the Congressional Office of Technology Assessment. It was created by Congress in 1972 and became the fourth congressional support agency. It was designed to provide the House and Senate with independent, nonpartisan and thorough analysis of complex technical issues and policy options for addressing them. In 1995 under pressure from the pompous and nefarious Newt Gingrich the small agency was de-funded.
I was a proud member of the senior OTA staff for 12 years. There is now bipartisan interest among some members of Congress in reinstituting OTA. And that is a wonderful idea that all those hoping to see improved congressional behavior and policymaking should support. For first hand understanding of what OTA did, you can access its reports at www.wws.princeton.edu/~ota. With a staff of just 200, two-thirds of which were professional research staff, it produced over 750 reports in its 23 years of existence. The scope and breadth of OTA's work was mind-boggling, and the remaining congressional support agencies have not replicated the depth of its work and the outreach of its staff. Ironically, many nations sent people to visit and examine OTA and then established their own versions of this unique technology assessment agency that they still rely on. The abolishment of OTA by Gingrich was viewed with amazement and chagrin worldwide.
How amazing that at a time in history when government policy has had to address more and more terribly sophisticated and contentious technical issues, Congress lost this precious national resource. And make no mistake about OTA's very positive impacts. Its work guided legislation, improved congressional oversight of agency activities, and helped reduce wasteful federal spending. Just as important, OTA informed Congress about issues likely to become important in the future so members could anticipate and act proactively. Please write you Senators and Representatives in support of providing new funding for OTA that still legally exists on paper at least. Yes, there is too much wasteful federal spending. But OTA is a compelling case; the public would benefit enormously by the relatively small funding for OTA.
The Portland Dollar is the beginning of a new currency for the Pacific Northwest.
Portland Dollars are circulated only in Oregon, Washington, Idaho and Montana west of the continental divide. They show that our money comes from the Northwest which makes it possible to truly support the local economy.
the Wall Street Journal's far-right editorial page and New York Times were recently in attack mode taking on two Latin American leaders deserving praise. First, the Journal. self-styled "Latin American expert" Mary Anastasia O'Grady's latest April 9 column titled "Sharp Left Turn in Ecuador" makes the case. O'Grady launches her attack with what she calls "the constitutional crisis that Ecuador finds itself in today... modern day plunder frenzy (pitting) President Raphael Correa, outspoken admirer of... Chavez, against members of Congress who wish to preserve the country's institutional balance of power. At stake is the future of democracy,... under a soft dictatorship allied with the Venezuelan strongman." Correa took office January 15 making impressive promises he's so far trying to keep. That arouses O'Grady's ire so she oxymoronically refers to "non-democratic Ecuador" while admitting, at the same time, Correa "was elected fair and square."
Early on, Correa campaigned like George Bush never did promising real change including using the country's oil revenue (Ecuador is the hemisphere's fifth largest producer) for critically needed social services Ecuadoreans never got before from right wing governments unwilling to provide them. He promised a "citizens' revolution" beginning by drafting a new Constitution in a Constituent Assembly with a national referendum on it scheduled for Sunday, April 15 following the same pattern his ally Hugo Chavez chose in 1999 following his first election as Venezuela's president in December, 1998. With popular support for it overwhelming, it's virtually certain to pass, again arousing O'Grady's ire calling this democratic process a "power grab" (sparking a) constitutional crisis." For the kleptocracy maybe, not for the long-exploited people.
Not about to let the Wall Street Journal one-up it, the New York Times assaulted Hugo Chavez in its April 10 Romero/Krauss article "High Stakes: Chavez Plays the Oil Card." [The Times championed the aborted 2 day coup toppling him briefly calling it a "resignation" and saying Venezuela was "no longer threatened by a would-be dictator."] Chavez made it clear to foreign investors the old way of doing business based on corporate exploitation of the country's resources at the expense of the Venezuelan people is over. The new rules are fair ones, the same kinds foreign oil and other investors agree to in deals with Global North countries but don't have to in relations with developing ones. The article continues with scare-talk saying Chavez's "confrontation could easily end up with everyone losing", meaning if Big Oil leaves, "Venezuela risks undermining the engine behind Mr. Chavez's socialist-inspired revolution by hampering its ability to transform the nation's oil into riches for years to come." Nonsense. If Big Oil leaves, which is very doubtful, it will be the loser and Venezuelan oil production will continue under new joint-venture partnerships.
[On Saturday] April 14, 2007 10 am to 1 pm, The Community Exchange Cycle Touring Club and Bike School will lead off the day of events with a bicycle ride 3029 SE 21 Ave (People's Co-op)starting at Peoples Co-op in SE Portland at 10:00 am and ending at the BIG RALLY downtown Portland.
Saturday's ride will [begin at] Peoples Food Co-op, (3029 SE 21 Ave), a passive solar residence in Northeast Portland, the Ecotrust Jean Vollum Natural Capital Center and the Step It Up rally at Terry Schrunk Plaza. The Community Exchange Cycle Touring Club and Bike School will be leading a bike tour to promote low or zero carbon solutions as part of our mission to promote peace and ecological respect, said Aaron Tarfman, volunteer leader of the ride on Saturday.
The event is part of the Step it Up 2007 campaign which will culminate at a rally downtown from 1:00-3:00 pm. The idea behind the Step It Up bike ride was to visit locations that showcase sustainable ideas in Portland from residential to commercial.
3029 SE 21 Ave (People's Co-op) Directions: Ride your bike to Peoples Co-op and then we'll ride around town!
Karl Rove is scheduled to speak at the King County Republican Party's Lincoln Day Dinner 2007, at the Hilton Seattle Airport Hotel in Seatac at 6:30 PM. Private reception begins at 5:30 PM.
World Can't Wait and others will be meeting at the corner of Highway 99 and S 176th St at 5:00 PM.
We will be serving an "ARREST WARRANT" on Karl Rove charging him for aiding and
abetting WAR CRIMES, CRIMES AGAINST HUMANITY and more!
Please bring your own signs with your own "special" message for Karl Rove!
I just got back from Tigard. There must have been around 100 people at one point. Not as big a turn out as I expected. Everything went smoothly. The protestors behaved peaceably. Not surprisingly it was the Bush supports who were out of control. I doubt the mainstream media will bother reporting that. My favorite part was a group of 2-3 young men holding up a confederate flag to protest the protestors. Scary thought-they had to have this in their closet, and pulled it out just for us. How proud their parents must be. We got flipped off more than I have experienced before. No wonder they held it in Tigard. There were around 6-10 other protestors there supporting Bush. "Support the War" was their sign. They flip us off where we hold up signs saying "Support Peace" but they go to all this trouble to support killings. I bet their christians. The Embassy Suites was holding another function for a real estate group. One of the men going in apologized to the protestors that he was there, but that he had to go. My kind of guy.
"Rove" Arrested Inside of Hotel in Tigard
On Friday the Thirteenth of April members of the Surge Protection Brigade and Code Pink greeted Karl Rove with a surprise party that included enactment of his arrest and incitement by citizens inside the Embassy Suites Hotel in Tigard, Oregon where he was speaking. Two groups of protesters made reservations for dinner- one of them a "Birthday Party" of twelve. They had dinner in the restaurant then took their brightly wrapped "presents" to an Atrium table right in front of the entrance to the room where Rove was speaking. The "presents" contained costumes and signs for a mock citizen's arrest and incitement of Rove just before he began speaking. When the citizens and a handcuffed "Rove" were escorted out by police they joined about 40 other demonstrators on the sidewalk behind the hotel. A person who counted demonstrators estimated that up to 100 people protested throughout the evening.
Photos from the Embassy Suites Karl Rove Protest
I really feel sorry and pity the folks who would actually pay money to support this war party. Why are you bearing witness to a war criminal on the stage who is shilling for a failed president and a disastrous foreign policy? It is just pathetic you consider yourself a conservative and a proud republican. I guess that you are the 28% that Chuckle Nuts still considers his base. I pray for your soul.I am a parent who has a son in the Persian Gulf. I was out there tonight to support him and his fellow service members who want to come home and end this senseless occupation of Iraq.
SOME 200 PEOPLE attended the April 7 rally at the Port-of-Oakland Headquarters. It was a smaller turnout than we would have liked, but considering that it was Easter weekend I guess it's as much as we could've hoped for. During the week before the rally, I took an informal poll and found that a lot of people whom I had expected to see at the rally were instead going to be out of town. Practically everyone, it seemed. And, to make matters worse, the weather reports were forecasting rain...
The rally commemorated the 4th anniversary of the police attack in which 59 protesters and longshoremen were injured. Other themes and issues were: Stop war shipments. Port money for schools & social services. Bring the troops home now, and give them the healthcare they need. Express solidarity with Tacoma protestors trying to stop war shipments.
The black forest city of Freiburg, in Germany's southwest, yesterday held a burial with full state honors for the former Nazi navy judge Hans Filbinger. A no-protest zone was declared around the cathedral, and hundreds of police were in attendance standing at attention lining the street while Filbinger's carcass passed. Filbinger was most famously responsible for revising cases of WW2 German Navy deserters, demanding the death penalty for sailors instead of 8 years of jail and disohonorable discharge. See the article for links to further information (in German only unfortunately). Executions ordered by Filbinger continued right up until the last days of the war, clearly demonstrating Filbinger's fascist fanaticism in the face of certain defeat.
Hollywood transit station 4-12-07 7:30pm
I go by.... I see a person hog-tied being lifted into a police car
I get my camera out and go by the car but didnt see a person was on the back seat. I start filming from overpass down to where the commotion is by the tracks below me. I missed the rukus but did interview an inocent "victim" his story is not nice.
here is the 5 minute YouTube video
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