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Four organizers with Tenant Rights Project used their alloted 3 minute time slots at this week's Wednesday morning Portland City Council meeting to criticize a local slumlord housing corporation and housing commissioner Nick Fish. The council objected to the "harsh rhetoric" of tenants.
Tenant Rights Project started organizing CCC tenants in the fall of 2008. CCC is a $33,000,000 annual budget nonprofit, with 23 buildings and 1400 tenants. There are persistent pest control (cockroaches, mice and bedbugs) problems in several buildings, crime (drugs, prostitution, sex harassment) that has moved into some of the buildings (aided and abetted by CCC managers in some buildings), and lack of transparency: the CCC board of directors has an 'oral preference' that tenants aren't allowed to attend board meetings or to speak at board meetings. Tenants are also forbidden to get copies of board minutes -- a practice that Community Alliance of Tenants (which TRP has been talking with since November, 2008) says may be illegal, under Oregon Attorney General John Kroger rules regarding transparency and nonprofits.
At this week's Aug. 26 city council meeting, tenants criticized Fish's refusal, for six months now, to meet with tenant organizers on these issues. Fish said nothing in response to this complaint. Instead, Fish launched into a long talk about people misusing the First Amendment, likening tenant protesters to the conservative protesters against Obama's health plan proposal. Fish deplored the lack of civility in public discourse, and suggested tenant organizers should "alter their delivery" and use 'less harsh' rhetoric, etc.
With a designer chicken in a circle and someone who clearly does his own media work the urban farm store is here. Great place for a bunch of hype. Overpriced chicks, feed, and 275$ for a chicken coop!!! I'm not kidding. No selection of seeds. Many good, solid glossy books on the subject of gardening. Go to the library for info, and buy "gardening west of the cascades" ANYWHERE ELSE.
"The backyard food and chicken raising craze has many societal and public policy implications for Portland. Explore them with the man at the center of the local chicken and homegrown food scene, Robert Litt, owner of Urban Farm Store." Local chicken and homegrown food scene? What? And my guy is claiming to be at the center of it? Excuse me?
My big problem with the commodification of this movement is that food has gotten incredibly spendy. I do not want anyone to be turned off from growing food because they only have access to overpriced goods. The Urban Farm store is taking advantage of peoples ignorance in prices, and selling an image to yuppies. A very clean, upper middle class image.
All the Mercury in the USA, currently existing, and generated by private sources, up to 11,000 metric tons, may be stored at Hanford Nuclear Reservation, 215 miles upstream of Portland, on the Columbia River. The US Department of Energy is considering this plan and accepting comments.
COMMENT DEADLINE: AUGUST 24, 2009
COMMENT ONLINE: click here
HANFORD IS THE MOST CONTAMINATED SITE IN THE WESTERN HEMISPHERE, AND THE LARGEST ENVIRONMENTAL CLEAN-UP PROJECT IN THE WORLD.
DOES THIS PLACE NEED YET ANOTHER 'MISSION'?
Hanford covers 586 square miles of desert in eastern Washington. 51 miles of the Columbia River runs through it. It is 35 miles north of the Oregon border, and 215 miles upstream from Portland.
Recommended commentary is that the USDOE TAKE NO ACTION, NOT ACCEPT COMMERCIAL MERCURY WASTE, the army should handle the mercury storage. At the very least, NO MERCURY TO HANFORD.
Tristan Anderson, an American national, was critically injured on 13 March 2009 when he was shot with a high velocity tear-gas projectile during an unarmed demonstration against the Wall in the West Bank village of Ni'lin (report and video: palsolidarity.org/2009/03/5324).
The Israeli Ministry of Defense has notified the Anderson family's lawyers that Israel perceives the incident on 13 March 2009 as an "act of war." This classification was made despite the fact that Anderson's shooting occurred during a civilian demonstration and there were no armed hostilities during the event or surrounding it.
[Tristan] was taken to Tel Hashomer hospital near Tel Aviv and to date remains in the hospital facilities. He has had several life-saving surgeries and his prospects for recovery are unclear.
Yesterday (Sunday Aug.9th) my friend Audrey stopped by my house with a story. She told me that police had approached her & told her that she was NO LONGER allowed to sell her artwork at Saterday Market because she didn't have a "permit". Even though she had been selling artwork at Sat.Market for years with NO problems or complaints, all of a sudden cops were taking it upon themselves to enforce this "permit" rule. She said that all the other people selling art/creative works as well as street entertainers were given the same warning for not having permits.
The Portland Office of Transportation (1120 SW 5th Ave 503 823-7002) is the govt. agency which issues permits for street vendors. Audrey said she tried applying for a formal permit long ago. But apparently, the POT does NOT issue permits to sell ARTWORK. They do issue permits to sell flowers & umbrellas... but not artwork. Nonetheless, Sat.Market has welcomed artists to sell their works with or without a permit for years. Only yesterday have the police started issuing warning papers to people for not having permits. Eventhough POT seemingly does not issue permits to sell art, cops were threatening artists that they would confiscate their work & fine them if they did not "comply".
Portland, OR- Today solidarity activists in Portland participated in the Global Day of Action in Honduras by hanging a banner from the MLK Blvd. overpass above I-84. The purpose of this action is to call attention to the fact that democracy has not yet been restored in Honduras, more than 40 days after a military coup occurred in that country.
Thousands of farmers, women, indigenous people, teachers, unionists and ordinary citizens from all over Honduras are participating in a National March that began on August 5, 2009 and culminate[d] August 11, 2009. This National March was organized by the National Front of Resistance Against the Coup d'etat as well as the farmworkers movement in Honduras. They are calling for the unconditional return of President Mel Zelaya who was removed in a military coup on June 28, 2009.
Under the provisions of the No Child Left Behind Act, schools receiving federal funds MUST release students' personal information to military recruiters if they are to continue to receive federal funds.
Please share this information with the young people in your lives:
At 8 pm PST at the Radical Faerie Sanctuary in Southern Oregon. Radical Faeries at their annual summer gathering each were given a handful of crematorial remains (of John Burnside and Harry Hay) which in unison were released to the land, thus bringing these seminal figures of gay rights home one last time.
John Burnside passed away this last fall, surviving Harry by a number of years. The life partners were among the original founders of the Radical faeries, and Harry Hay was one of the initial agitators for queer rights, as founder of the Mattachine Society, the first gay rights advocacy organization since the fall of the German Vidmar republic, agitating in a world before Stonewall. Both life-long critics of Capitalism, and the commercialization of the gay culture and the commodification of gay men, as well as Advocates of "subject-subject" consciousness.
They will be missed, but will never be silent.
Portland City Council will consider this week a proposal to build a water treatment plant (LT2) for our pristine Bull Run water. The plan is, we are told, designed to address a US EPA requirement that all drinking water in the US be treated/filtered for Cryptosporidium. While this cookie cutter approach will likely add to the safety of water in other cities, it is not appropriate in Portland because our Bull Run system supplies water with virtually no possibility of contamination. Cryptosporidium in a form that is lethal to humans has never been found in the Bull Run water system. There has been no demonstrated need for treatment/filtration.
The construction of a water treatment plant will be very expensive, $385 million, all of it to be paid for by the city water users. The $385 million would be financed via the issuance of bonds; interest payments due and paid for by water users would increase that figure to close to $1 billion dollars.
Alliance for Democracy has joined others in calling for the Portland city council to postpone a decision until later in August, and to hold public meetings scheduled it a time when citizens can attend. Ask the Portland city council now to postpone a decision until the public can gain knowledge of what is at stake and can get their voices heard. In addition to the letter below from Oregon Wild, please see the editional comment by the Oregonian where they write "The best solution, of course, is the one that would cost nothing: Leave Portland's water alone."
[Background Article: http://friendsofreservoirs.org/background.html]
On the night of July 25, a group of sexy autonomous individuals visited Embassy Suites Airport Hotel to continue a campaign against the hotel that hosted Neo-Nazi David Irving. David Irving is a notorious white supremacist and holocaust denier - more information at http://portland.indymedia.org/en/2009/07/392426.shtml
Wearing ravishing disguises, the group came prepared with flyers that were left under the doors of most of the rooms in the hotel. The flyers informed the patrons of Embassy Suites' heinous apathy to the presence of fascists in our community. Since we do not support the right of Nazis to spew their filth in our community, we felt it was necessary to send a strong message to Embassy Suites and those who choose to give them money that supporting Irving and any Nazi is unacceptable.
Ignoring Nazis in the past has not made them vanish, as many liberals would pretend. Removing Nazis from one's community in the past has always involved direct action targeting their homes, their work, and the spaces in which they organize. On Saturday night, Embassy Suites Airport Hotel felt the second wave of backlash against them and their yuppie army of paying guests.
Short update on the case of the AETA4 in California, and ways that folks can support them:
On July 13th, defense attorneys for Joseph Buddenberg, Maryam Khajavi, Nathan Pope and Adriana Stumpo (the AETA 4) presented oral arguments on their motion to dismiss the Animal Enterprise Terrorism Act. The defense demanded that the Animal Enterprise Terrorism Act (AETA) be struck down as unconstitutional before Judge Ronald Whyte of the United States District Court, Northern District of California in San Jose.
The AETA is being used for the first time since its passage by Congress in 2006 to do exactly what civil rights advocates feared it would do - criminalize activities protected by the First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution. The oral arguments presented on July 13th were not about the allegations as directly applied to the AETA 4, but rather that the whole case should be dismissed now because the AETA itself is unconstitutional. The courtroom was packed, and many people were there in support of the AETA 4. The following are very rough and incomplete notes of the oral arguments:
Low-income and Sec. 8 tenants held an informational picket Friday morning at 10am (corporate media invited, none attended) against so-called nonprofit slumlord Central City Concern.
With signs that read, "Defend Tenant Rights" and "Greg Must Go!" tenant organizers picketed the $33,000,000 per year, so-called nonprofit landlord, Central City Concern. For a year, tenants have protested, written and organized against CCC management practices. CCC has persistent pest control problems in many buildings (cockroaches, mice, bedbugs), crime and kickbacks inside the buildings to/by CCC staff (prostitution, drugs, etc.), sexual harassment of tenants by managers (the "Greg" in question, above), and lack of transparency and accountability: it is an 'oral preference' that CCC board meetings outlaw tenants attending, or speaking at, CCC board meetings -- and the board minutes are secret.
Today's picket was prompted by the reinstatement after suspension of Greg Green, a building manager who is accused by tenants of sexual harassment of tenants, along with promoting/getting kickbacks on drugs and prostitution inside the buildings.
On Tuesday, July 21st, 4 local individuals were sentenced for smashing bank windows, "rioting", and thwarting the arrests of others on May Day '08 in Olympia. The court house in Olympia was packed with supporters. A ring of police stood between us and the judge, smirking and chatting with the prosecutor during recess.
The actual crime of this whole affair is the persistence of the state, its apologizers and witless functionaries, and the daily coercion which becomes concentrated against individuals who show resistance. This was displayed nakedly as the prosecutor and judge showed special enmity for our companero, Bryan, by ordering 120 days in jail because he held his head up during the proceedings intended for humiliation.
A crowd of healthcare advocates converge[d] at Pioneer Courthouse Square, in support of a true public option for healthcare reform...to publicly declare their collective desire to see a Public Option healthcare reform package get passed by Congress and approved by President Barack Obama, by this fall or sooner.
There was a noticeable TV media presence, along with a galvanizing speech given by Jefferson Smith, current OR state legislator and founder of the Bus Project. Rally participants also shared tragic stories about their healthcare experiences, and got their message across to the energetic, diverse audience, despite not being allowed by local authorities to carry a bull-horn, in order to be properly heard. Rally participants also expressed concerns over Senator Ron Wyden's response to public option reform.
A vote is potentially expected sometime early next week, so the outcome has yet to be decided in Congress. Stay tuned.
On Sunday, July 19, approximately 50 anti-fascists and anti-racists made their way to the Embassy Suites - Airport hotel in Portland, to oppose the Holocaust-denier and neo-fascist David Irving, and the sympathizers who had paid $24-$30 each to hear him talk.
Although Irving's event was not shut down, we consider our intervention to have been successful in sending a clear message that fascist organizing is not welcome in our community, and that Irving will be met with resistance. This was not only an achievement for Rose City Antifa members, who were a minority within the opposition to the event, it was also an important result for the broader anti-racist community, which mobilized effectively and at short notice. We believe that events such as that on Sunday set the stage for more substantial victories in the future.
David Irving is a British writer of histories who has been involved with the fascist political scene since the 1960s. Always known for the pro-Hitler bias of his books, approximately two decades ago Irving made the transition to being a fully-fledged Holocaust-denier. In addition to spreading blatant historical lies, Irving has publicly stated that "The Jews are the architects of their own misfortune". Although Irving has been banned from several countries and even imprisoned for his Holocaust-denial propagandizing and pro-Nazi agitation, he has been touring the United States since the beginning of July.
Navy veteran Joe Walsh (The Lone vet) from Portland Oregon, had his day in court and was found NOT GUILTY in a stunning peace movement victory over a foreign political influence.
Without Gordon Sturrock's video of the events there would have been almost no way to have won this case without having to do some really painstaking Q&A lasting several hours involving lots and lots of drawings with x'es and dotted lines and biases. The video provided an impartial camera eye's view of events that would have been very difficult to establish any other way. It's doubtful there would have been the same outcome without it. The video showed Joe walking across the driveway once, twice, being led away in cuffs- and the whole time there is another man in a black suit walking about in the restricted area with complete impunity. As it turns out, he's important.
The last few weeks have been unbelievable! I want to share some of my experiences so that anyone who hesitates taking time off their job might think again, and renounce being consumer slaves of corporate capital, in favor of radical adventure and creative insurrection against the global government of militant madness.
Nearly a month ago I took time off work to partake in the most amazing Cascadia Summer, something like a summer vacation, even with an overnight in Douglas County Jail.
United for Iran
Global Day of Action
Saturday, July 25
1pm at: Pioneer Square - Downtown Portland
Call on the world to:
We are thrilled to report that the Obama Administration pulled all six Records of Decision this morning on the WOPR! These forests will again be managed under the Northwest Forest Plan. Please do celebrate this victory for the forests, critters and salmon of western Oregon.
Portland, OR -- People throughout the west celebrated an Obama administration decision to cancel a Bush era plan that would have nearly quadrupled current logging on public lands in western Oregon. The Bush plan, called the Western Oregon Plan Revision, or WOPR, rezoned 2.6 million acres of federal public forests in Oregon managed by the Bureau of Land Management. The announcement came in response to a lawsuit filed by thirteen conservation and fisheries protection organizations challenging the Bush logging plan. Obama administration officials said the Bush plan illegally ignored requirements to protect endangered species living in the forests and could not be defended in court.
This is my first year working at the Oregon Country Fair. I didn't know quite to expect. Having only visited it for a day the year before, I thought that maybe it was a big circus, with the glitz and guts coming down once it closes. However, it's full of a lot of great people who walk their talk and are greatly accepting. People are free to express themselves in whichever way they see fit, without pressure, body image ideals or costume if they don't want.
Portland Indymedia is tabling in the Doors of Expression Booth at Community Village at the Oregon Country Fair this weekend, July 10-12. If you're coming down to the fair, come over and say hi and check out our co-boothers, KBOO, Mind Freedom and Kindtree. Also be sure to make time to check out the shows, sights and community. Read More
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