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In July of 2005, at the First Unitarian Church in Portland Oregon a forum was held concerning the legality of our recent elections, and the viability of the United States election process itself. Here in this report, you will be able to access audio files of these important and urgent presentations, either in RealMedia format or in MP3 format.
This forum featured two speakers, Thom Hartman, author and well known radio talk show host; and Paul Lehto, attorney, who recently wrote a paper on election fraud, and who is involved in a lawsuit in King County Superior Court, against Snohomish County and Sequoia Voting Systems.
This week end, September 30-October 2, 2005, a three day event is being held entitled, "National Summit To Save Our Elections." Our community will have the opportunity to learn how corporate-owned electronic election systems affect their vote, and how they can help restore citizen ownership of our elections. Both Thom Hartmann, and Paul Lehto will be making presentations, as well as other well known, and unfortunately for our right to vote, less known speakers will be in attendance.
For a schedule of the event, including speakers and agenda, Summit Schedule
When I heard that the Westboro Baptist Church was coming to a Beaverton High School yesterday, my initial reaction was, "Won't somebody please think about the children!" However, after witnessing the counterprotest today, I realized that 'the children' are thinking for themselves.
As a youth, I was queer and in the closet. I grew up in the Midwest in a school of ninety kids. Being out really wasn't an option. I suppose I could have done it. I would have been threatened, isolated and humilated on a daily basis without even my family to support me. I couldn't do that. I thought of myself at that age today when I headed to Beaverton's Southridge High School.
Santa Rosa, CA -- In a brazen move, Maxxam/Pacific Lumber Co. (Maxxam/PL) began logging in the contested "Bonanza" timber harvest plan (THP # 1-05-097 HUM) on Tuesday, September 27 without the required authorization from the North Coast Regional Water Quality Control Board (Water Board). After logging an unknown amount of the 250-acre plan, the illegal logging was stopped by the company.
Accordingly, on Thursday, September 29, Maxxam/PL was served a Notice of Violation by the Water Board for logging without a required permit.
The Bonanza harvest plan contains the largest unprotected, contiguous, occupied marbled murrelet stand left on Maxxam/PL's land. Last year, a comprehensive Status Review for the murrelet, prepared by a blue-ribbon panel of top murrelet researchers, warned that if current trends continue, the endangered species faces a very high probability of extinction in California within a very short time.
Sierra Club Press Release: Congress Takes First Step Toward Gutting Endangered Species Act; Rep. Pombo's Legislation Would Turn Back 30 Years of Successful Stewardship
Washington, D.C. -- Congress took the first step today toward gutting the 30-year old Endangered Species Act, America's safety net for fish and wildlife at the edge of extinction, voting 229 to 193 for legislation crafted by House Resources Chairman Richard Pombo (R-CA). The bill eliminates habitat protection measures for fish and wildlife facing extinction, creates an exemption for the approval of potentially dangerous pesticides and establishes a new entitlement program for developers and polluters by requiring the federal government to pay developers, the oil industry and polluters to avoid destroying the habitat of publicly owned fish and wildlife.. According to the Congressional Budget Office (CBO), implementation of the Pombo legislation will cost the U.S. taxpayer $2.7 billion over the next five years.
This attempt to rewrite the landmark law is just the latest attempt by Rep. Pombo to undermine America's bedrock environmental protections. In addition to his assault on the Endangered Species Act, he's also working to weaken the National Environmental Policy Act, and pushing controversial measures to drill in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge and off America's coasts, and sell off National Parks to private interests.
The little black electric clock was buzzing, I was in a wonderful dream, and we were at peace. When I looked at the clock it said 0600; I had to get up and be about the business of protesting on the Morrison Bridge, Portland, Or. I wanted coffee----give me coffee and all things would seem better. My beloved wife Patty said, "You don't have to get up, it is your day off, and taking one Friday off from your protest will not change the world." During my second cup of coffee, waiting for the bus to come at 0705, I wondered what keeps me going.
What makes a guy who is happy with his life, has a great lady to share his adventure of living for the last 25 years (+)---grandkids that think he is funny and love building things with him; what makes him risk being arrested or run over by some nutty Bush supporter who gets angry over one of his signs.
What makes this guy, who now calls himself the "Lone Vet" because he has decided to stand alone on the bridge from 0730-0830 every Friday with a sign that most people ignore, some cheer, and others who yell commie coward. One word comes to mind, "Fear." [ read more ]
previous: Protest continues on the Morrison Bridge
There were nine of us, who came from different parts of Oregon, to participate in the three-day events in DC. We all walked in the massive march on Saturday; on Monday two in our group chose to participate in the civil disobedience action.
About 10AM Monday morning, our group walked over to Lafayette Park, which is across the street from the White House. By 12:30 marching groups from Camp Casey and another from the Laity and Clergy group converged onto the park with great cheers from the rest of us. By now, we were about 1,000 strong. [ Read More ]
What it was like: an account of Sept. 24th D.C.The demonstration in DC was like a convention. One lady my age touched my arm and asked, "Who would have ever thought we would have to do this again?" Then she vanished into the crowd. We all had to show up at this convention to convince ourselves that there were others in a nation of over 280 million people occupying half a continent who have not gone stark raving mad. We were the others who gathered together at Washington DC on the 24th of September, 2005 and at points all over the USA and all over the world. We move to gather again, to get to know each other. These are not "demonstrations," because it is no longer possible to demonstrate the obvious. This was and will be a gathering of strength, of information, of momentum. It was like seeing hope. It was like seeing the future as it will be; green, whether in local sustainable communities or in recovering forests outside the ruins. [ Read More ]
Many people don't know it but Portland has 2 cohousing communities, Trillium Hollow Cohousing Community and Cascadia Cohousing Community. Cohousing is style of cooperative housing whereby the residents of the community live and engage in intentional community. For more information on cohousing you can check out http://www.cohousing.org.
Trillium Hollow (TH) is located in Portland's West Hills in the Cedar Mill area 7.5 miles from downtown Portland. TH has 29 family units located on 3.6 acres with an adjacent 11 acres of greenbelt. TH common areas include a year round stream, wetland, organic gardens, greenhouse, 4,500 sf common house, children's play areas, laundry, and much much more.
Two Protests were held in Washington, DC this week around the issue of war in Iraq. An anti-war contingent organized the largest public rally in recent memory agains the policies of the Bush Administration. They expected 100,000 people, and all estimates I've seen of actual attendance ranged from 100,000-200,000. The next day, a counter demonstration was organized by groups that support war and agree with our current President. Organizers said they expected 10,000-20,000 attendees. The actual turnout according to the Associated Press--"as many as 400."
Despite the massive difference in scale between these two demonstrations, the Oregonian gave more space, and better coverage to the pro-war gathering. They ran two stories, a 10 paragraph piece on the anti-war gathering on page A-10, and a 17 paragraph piece on the pro-war gathering on page A-2. So, the anti-war gathering had at least 250 times as many people, but got 40% less ink, and was buried in the middle of the paper, while the pro-war side gets on the back of the front page--one of the most read areas. [ read more ]
Oregonian biased coverage of anti and pro war demos
To the editor, The Oregonian
On Sept. 25, you gave 30 column inches on A10, including a photo, to an AP story ("Thousands rally in Washington to bring troops home from Iraq") on the Washington demo using the lowest estimate for the turnout. That space included a 3" box noting that "about 100" held signs and candles in a silent protest on downtown Portland bridges. You did not cover the other Portland demo, which drew about 150 on Friday nor the largest of the Oregon Saturday events in Albany where almost 500 particiapted or any of the other local events from Waldport to La Grande.
On Sept 26, you devoted more space (32 column inches) on A2 ("Support for U.S. troops guides rally"--in larger type) including a photo and contact information (missing from your anti war coverage) to an AP report on an event 3000 miles away for which only a tiny group of between 200 and 400 supporters of the war turned out (organizers were looking for 20,000) evidently to denounce the overwhelming success of the anti-war events. Its significance event can only lie in its pathetic failure and suggest a lack of popular support for the war. It was not even noted by the New York Times. [ read more ]
more criticism of corporate media "coverage" of s24: [ Corp Media Mentioned DC S24 - But There Was Much More | Please post photos of Bridge Vigil | Corporate Media coverage of the protests? ]
On Saturday, September 24th, a group of about 40 citizens gathered at the Chamber of Commerce office in St. Helens. 40 people in this small town, miles outside of the metropolitan area, cared enough to take a stand. They turned out to protest the war in Iraq and ask that our troops be brought home. Compared to the turnout in larger, more cosmopolitan cities 40 may not seem like a lot. In St. Helens, however, there are few activities that draw such a large crowd, and those are more likely to be high school sporting events than political rallies.
On Tuesday, September 26, 2005 a second demonstration was held in South Columbia County. People of all ages and backgrounds gathered together at the Totem Pole in Scappoose to make a statement. The number changed as demonstrators came and left, devoting time as they could. Some stopped in before hurrying home to fix dinner for their families, some arrived directly after work, all demonstrated their commitment to ending the war in Iraq.
On Sept. 26, representatives of Veterans for Peace Chapter 72, Code Pink Portland, St. Luke's Lutheran Church, WILPF, Oregonians Against the War, and OPW visited the Portland offices of Senators Smith and Wyden, and Representatives Blumenauer and Wu. We delivered messages urging the legislators to take action to bring the war to an immediate end, which included: a formal letter from the members of VFP72 (see attached .pdf file), individual letters and petitions, and more than 1,300 post cards to the two senators, 1,000 of which were signed at the Saturday Bridge Vigil. Letters were delivered to Rep. Darlene Hooley's office on Sept. 27.
The interaction with the legislators' staffs was predictably courteous and bland, with the exception of Earl Blumenauer's staff, who were clearly happy to see us and with whom we carried on the only real lobbying dialog of the day.
You are a rebellious woman. I will talk to your husband but not to you. You are a rebellious woman.
On the way up to Seattle we passed the time filling in madlibs packed by the spirit of creation, a mother with fire and love in her heart. Mothers must terrify the pro-Bush "Christian" death worshippers who called me a rebellious woman as I passed their contingent of two by Westlake Center. Females need one seed, then create on their own... life in all its uncomfortable, uncontrollable glory. To have your own power, your own voice, to seize your life as your own insults the death cultists, threatens their existence, gnaws thru the shabby veil of their reality construct and shows them their uselessness, base cowardice and petty, peevish, shoe-licking opportunism. They must silence all but the 3rd tier death-worshipping zombies from which they draw the small amount of spark it takes them to somnambulate and try to spread their filth. And forget the Christ they say they worship. A man if not a god who died for what he believed and shared a compassion which threatened the already parasitic power structure. [ read more ]
S24 - Seattle Pictures: The Good: cheerleaders gave the small anti-imperialist contingent a much-needed boost in ENERGY. if they hadn't been there, it would've been a little drab. i wish i had pictures. The Bad: the arrest of some guy and the docile liberal reaction to it. "oh lets just all get on the sidewalk" this one old hippy guy was like "i say we all get off the street and go listen to some more speeches!" [ read more ]
What I did to get arrested: "And I wonder what that poor guy we saw getting arrested did to deserve it?" Funny you should ask. According to the police report, the reason I was arrested was "pedestrian interference". I have two ideas why they chose me. First, I asked what law I was breaking by standing in the street (they never answered me by the way). Second, I suspect I was recognized by a few of the cops (at the J20 event for example, I managed to piss a cop off enough he had to leave the front line, pointing at me saying, "he's the first to go!" I think I've gotten the attention of a few of them...). [ September 24th Protest in Seattle ]
Today at the Lloyd Tower Klamath river residents and supporters joined Native people of the Klamath River to ask Pacific Power to remove thier fish killing dams. The Klamath dams are currently in a process that occurs every 50 years, in dam removal is possible. However after years of negotiations Pacific Power shocked river communities by ignoring fish passage and down river communities in their plans. Now community members are taking their issues straight to the doorsteps of Pacific Power.
Residents and tribal members told of the lowest Chinook (or King) Salmon runs in recorded history and the impacts to thier way of life due to continuing fish kills in the Klamath. They also demanded for Pacific Power to Bring the Salmon home to the upper Klamath watershed, which has not seen Salmon in almost a century. This fight is far from over. 50 years is too long to wait for the return of the salmon and steelhead runs. It may already be too late for the spring Chinook which historically had up to a million returning adults per year, many of which used the upper basin above the dams. Currently their are less then 200 in the whole river.
More than 50 Venezuelan trade union leaders attended the First Trade Union and Political Education Workshop, organised by the UNT and the Bolivarian Workers' Force (FBT), with the collaboration of the Ministry of Labour in El Paraiso, Caracas from September 19 to 23. The main aim of the meeting was to "start a process of ideological and political rearming of the trade union movement".
The workshop passed a very interesting resolution which we reproduce here: We ratify the leading role of our president Hugo Chavez Frias in this democratic and participatory revolutionary process. We understand that faced with the failure of capitalism, which is the cause of all exploitation, exclusion, oppression, hunger, pollution and misery in the world, we must go to a new model of society based on equality and with a social economy. we believe that the means of production must be expropriated and collectivised, and we believe in the building of socialism of the 21st century as a government of the workers and the people.
The vigil on the bridges last night was awesome, with participants ranging from teens to families with little ones, to olders, and elders. Candles thickly lined all three of the downtown bridges. The Oregonian apparently put the total at 100 folks, organizers estimate pretty conservatively at 900-1000. [ read more ]
Photos of PDX s24 bridge vigils for peace: I had thought that three bridges was over-reaching, but I was wrong. All but the last photo are from the vigil on the south side of the Burnside Bridge. I'm told that there were many more participating in the vigil on the Hawthorne Bridge. However, I got to the Hawthorne bridge very late. Still I like the way the series ends with an edgy photo of one of the last to leave vigil participants to leave the Hawthorne Bridge. [ read more ]
Photos from S24 vigil, Morrison Bridge: Photos from the anti-war vigil on the evening of September 24, 2005, on 3 of portland's bridges. these are all from the Morrison Bridge. I estimate there were about 100-150 on that bridge. The Oregonion reported only 100 total on all 3 bridges, but there were at least that many on just the Morrison, and I heard there were a about 500 on the Burnside and several hundred on the Hawthorne. [ read more ]
Pix from Saturday night vigil on Hawthorne Bridge: Here's some pix of the vigil on the Hawthorne Bridge on Saturday night. Critics say: "You're protesting doesn't do any good." I say: "Well, at the very least, it reminds me that I'm not alone." [ read more ]
From the Bridges tonight: At least a thousand, maybe 2000 on the Burnside, Morrison and Hawthorne Bridges tonight. We lined the bridges with candles, flags, signs and our passion that this evil war end now. Passing motorists honking horns lent support - even a stretch limo. The best motor support came at the end while walking down off the Morrison Bridge when a PDX Police wagon honked and waved the peace sign. [ read more ]
Several Sources are reporting that Cindy Sheehan was arrested moments ago after protesting with a group of several hundred in front of the Whitehouse. She allegedly sat down with around a dozen other protestors and was warned by authorities that she must move along or be arrested. She was arrested almost immediately after the warning was given.
Update: Sheehan was released.
I went to the Klamath River Tribes film screening and presentation tonight... to understand a little about the way of life the Klamath River tribes are struggling to both restore and preserve....At issue is the 50 year dam relicensing application due in March of 2006, for the complex of dams along the rivers in the Klamath Basin, where there are currently 6 dams sited. Salmon are being blocked from 350 miles of spawning habitat as a result of these dams. After the 'bucket brigades' by Klamath basin farmers, over 100,000 fish died on the Klamath.
Pacificorp dams on the Klamath River provide less than 2 percent of Pacificorp's total operating power; A study by the California Energy Commission found that already-operational power plants could easily replace any energy lost from decommissioning the Klamath River dams. Water Quality is now one of the main issues that the Klamath Tribes are working on calling attention to... independent water testing was done by the tribes this year. It was discovered that in the summer with the heat and fertilizer runoff, there are huge algae blooms. When the air cools, the algae decomposes, lowering oxygen levels in the water behind the Copco and Iron Gate dams. one type of algae present is toxic to the liver, called microcystis aeruginosa was found in levels that exceeded 100 times the World Health Organization standards.
The sale of Pacificorp and the relicensing of the Klamath River dams are both still under consideration by the FERC (Federal Energy Regulatory Commission) and by the PUC (Public Utility Commission). Cascadians need to put pressure on these agencies, along with our legislators and governor. We need our legislature to take a more active role in the management of the Klamath basin. Fisheries and recreational and cultural values need to take as big a role in decision-making as agriculture. We have to speak out to preserve these rivers, and in doing so, preserving the way of life of indigenous peoples. To not do so is to condone genocide. We need to contact our legislators about this gross human rights violation and argue against the relicensure of these dams, and to argue for dam removal.
Related: [ July '04 anti-ESA rally opposition by Tribes | Tribes Host protest July 12 '05 in Southern Oregon and Scotland for Klamath Salmon] | Klamath Tribes Return To Scotland July '05 to urge dam removal as fish are dying | http://karuk.us ]
As I pulled my car into the parking lot of the "New Carrollton" metro station, just northeast of our nation's capital, around 9:30 AM, on Sept. 24, 2005, I knew it was going to be a great day! The place was already mobbed with Anti-War protesters carrying all kinds of flashy banners, signs and posters indicating their opposition to the Iraqi War. From New Carrollton, it is only a short hop to the "Smithsonian" metro station, which is right on the National Mall and very close to the Washington Monument. A further hike by foot takes you - to the staging area for the "Bring the Troops Home Now," rally: the Ellipse.
When I reached the Mall, which runs on a mostly east to west line from the Capitol to the Lincoln Memorial, I saw a sea of people emerging from every direction onto its still green lawns. I headed for the Washington Monument, where the sponsoring organization, the "United for Peace & Justice" organization, had set up a temporary village of tents "designed to connect grassroots activists with a wide array of organizations and campaigns." [ read more ]
Size Didn't Matter; It was the Message, and it was Big
100,000? (DC police, AP) 250,000? (my unscientific count) 300,000? (organizers) 500,000? (Truthout's William Pitt and CNN). Really, who cares how many marched and rallied in Washington on Saturday? The important thing is that huge numbers of people of all ages, races, and walks of life, from all over the country--more people than the right could hope to entire to any event, even if it paid them--converged on the White House to condemn the War on the people of Iraq, and to condemn administration whose domestic policies are destroying the country.
As a conservatively dressed middle-aged woman from Buffalo, NY, riding the Metro back to her hotel, said, explaining why she had trekked all the way down to the nation's capital with a friend to join the protest, "I just got tired of sitting around the house being angry all the time." [ read more ]
Seattle: Here are a few pictures I snapped with a digital camera today. The protest brought together a great group of people as expected. I saw an estimate of around six to seven thousand people on the Seattle Indymedia website. After leaving the protest and heading back to my home on the bus I ran into a young fellow asking me if I was at the rally. I told him that I had been there and told him about the people that were there. "Do you really think that everyone getting together like that is going to end the war?" [ read more ]
Portland Bridges:At least a thousand, maybe 2000 on the Burnside, Morrison and Hawthorne Bridges tonight. We lined the bridges with candles, flags, signs and our passion that this evil war end now. The best motor support came at the end while walking down off the Morrison Bridge when a PDX Police wagon honked and waved the peace sign. [ read more ]
Estacada: We attended a small but dedicated gathering for Peace in Estacada this afternoon. There were 70 to 80 people in attendance, which is pretty astonishing for a little town like Estacada. Several speeches were given and a reading of a poem written by Casey Sheehan's sister which was very moving. Lloyd Marbet also spoke. There was music and companionship and a parade through town to be followed by a candlelight vigil this evening. No riot suited police were observed![ read more ]
Eugene:A great day! I'm not any good at estimating crowds, but it was a large and spirited one. Several hundred at least. The largest demonstration I've seen in the two years I've been in Eugene. We marched around downtown, past the Saturday Market, and then had a rally near the courthouse with some heartfelt speeches. It looks like we're coming back together. [ read more ]
David Pool writes: "At the Hempstalk festival of a couple weeks ago we caught up with Dr. Leveque an Oregon doctor and osteopath who has practiced medicine for over fifty years. The doctor is not currently practicing as a result of having had his license pulled by the state medical board, which also fined him $26,000.
Dr. Leveque was one of the first doctors to help patients suffering from a range of illnesses to use marijuana to alleviate symptoms. Many doctors refused to counsel their patients on the therapeutic uses of the drug, preferring to use pharmaceuticals like Oxycontin and Hydrocodone to treat pain.
On September 20, Vinny and I returned to the George R. Brown Convention Center in Houston to find out what was happening with the Katrina survivors since the Convention Center was closing it's doors as a shelter. An "Exit Only" sign on the doors made it clear that Katrina survivors were no longer welcome at the Convention Center. According to Anna Holly, Onsite Public Information Officer, it was time to "get back to business, back to conventions."
Many people were able to secure housing, however that was not the case for everyone. Vinny spoke with several people that had been excluded from federal services and are not sure what they are going to do for a job and housing. [ read more ]
Struggling for a Home After Hurricane Katrina
On September 20, after Vinny and I visited the George R. Brown Convention Center in Houston, we headed over to the Reliant Arena to find out more information about Katrina survivors being transfered from the Arena to Fort Chaffee, a military base in Arkansas.
The mood was more tense that it had been in previous days. It seemed that most people were not sure what was going on. Hurricane Katrina has wrecked peoples homes and changed their lives forever. After trying to find family members and friends, the next step for Katrina survivors has been to try to find some form of housing. [ read more ]
Audio (mp3): [ David Brown explains some of the roles played by Operation Compassion | Katrina survivors try to find some form of housing | Josh says Katrina survivors are treated differently in front of cameras | Milton, a Pastor in Houston, offers people shelter at a local church | Magnificent asks if he can speak from his heart | Laurence shares his incredible story of survival ]
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