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400 people protested in the streets, and in the stores today at Powell's and Safeway, in a show of solidarity to support workers fighting for decent health care.
The action started at the North Park Blocks with the No War Drum Corps and a Jobs with Justice banner leading a march to Powell's front door. Meanwhile, dozens of activists started their Valentine's Day program inside the store. After a few love songs, with some new verses about Powell's, a very large valentine was presented to Powell's workers. Another much smaller and not-so-nice valentine was presented to Ann Smith, Powell's CEO... People then did a conga-line march through the store, while dozens of Powell's workers simultaneously walked off the job! After a brief rally in front of the main entrance, the crowd (now at 400) marched down 11th to Safeway.
Corportate media reports of violence by pro-Aristide supporters in Haiti, coupled with statement's from Washington supporting regime change, bring to mind the April 11, 2002 failed coup attempt against Venezuelan President, Hugo Chavez. Different circumstances, same imperialist power behind the curtain.
Excerpt from Haitiprogres.com: ...in one of the largest mobilizations in recent years, hundreds of thousands of Haitians marched and rallied in Port-au-Prince on Feb. 7, the anniversary of the 1986 fall of the Duvalier dictatorship, to demand that Aristide fulfill his five-year term, which ends Feb. 6, 2006. Thousands more held similar anti-coup demonstrations in provincial cities. Pro-government popular organizations have begun setting up barricades and taking up arms in the capital and other cities like Jacmel, Cayes and Cap Ha?tien to prevent the spread of the armed opposition's attacks.
The offensive began on the morning of Feb. 5 when the newly constituted Front of Revolutionary Resistance of Gona?ves (FRRG) attacked that city's police headquarters with automatic weapons fire and grenades. Many civilians and several policemen were killed in the five-hour gun battle that ensued, although it is not clear how many from numerous conflicting reports. Eventually the police withdrew. The attackers overran the station and freed all the prisoners in jail, "among them lots of criminals whom courts had convicted," said a Feb. 7 police communique. [ Read More ] [ Haitiprogres.com ]
Today is the third anniversary of my first full day in Portland, and I thought to myself, "What better way to start it than by protesting the awful plans for that Starbucks in my neighborhood!" So I got up at the crack of dawn, biked over, and joined a few other folks on SE Division in front of the Ladd's Meat Building. I had downloaded and made copies of some flyers made expressly for this event and posted here on indymedia. The flyers are geared toward drivers sitting at the long light there, and warned thta if the Starbucks goes in, traffic and waits will be even worse. "Outreach to the Commuting Community", I guess you'd call this. ;-)
Workers at Mother Kali's Books in Eugene, Oregon (one of the oldest longstanding feminist bookstores in the United States) were locked out of the shop on January 29th, following an unfair labor practices filing with the National Labor Relations Board. Mother Kali's workers are members of IWW Industrial Union 660, and have been pursuing contract negotioation with the Mother Kali's Board of Directors for several months with no response. [ Read more... ]
Tonight managers at the Sellwood New Seasons expressed their commitment to the community by rejecting the wishes of a local Street Roots vender to sell the paper in front of their store. Vendors had sold the paper outside Sellwood New Seasons previously and been treated with respect and enthusiasm by their customers. Many folks who were not used to seeing Street Roots outside of downtown were happy to see the Roots growing to Southeast Portland. They will no longer have access to the community voice of the homeless population without leaving their neighborhood.
When asked why New Seasons had this policy the managers response was that the company does not own the location, but leases it from "...some big company that owns a lot of stuff other places and is headquartered somewhere."
Members of IWW Industrial Union 660 continued their job action today in front of Mother Kali's Books on 13th avenue in Eugene. The crowd today was smaller than at Monday's rally when 30 supporters marched and picketed the former worker's cooperative. Organizers seemed equally pleased with the coninuing effort and with the sunny weather.
The four workers who were terminated without notice and had their medical benefits illegally discontinued were present and spoke with several customers coming out of the store. One customer said that the store's sole visible employee had told him that the picketers out front were not really part of a labor union. This prompted several of the fired workers to go and hold their IWW red cards up against the glass of the front window.
The UPS deliveryman was obviously of a different mind than the clerk concerning the nature of the job action. After a call to his union steward he told the picket line that he would not cross the line if they didn't want him to, and did not take his packages into the store.
The Umpqua National Forest decided on Alternative No. 6, one of the worst.
A record of decision is expected in April 2004.
Log approx. 42 mmbf (8,500 log trucks full), burnt mature & old growth forests
Leave as little as 4 trees per acre in 900 acres of salvage units,
Build 1.27 miles of new roads and reconstruct 1.05 miles of closed roads,
Use 39 landings for helicopters (about 1 acre each of permanent deforestation).
This project will salvage dead trees from the 2002 arson Apple fire in the North Umpqua Ranger District of the Umpqua National Forest. alternative 6 will salvage log mature and old-growth forests, mostly dead trees killed in the fire. (The only live trees logged will be "incidental", that is, cut when they stand in the way of building new roads or yarding corridors).
On most of the units (and on all of the big Douglas fir old-growth units), only four (4) trees per acre will be left. Two of those trees will be cut down to provide soil nutrients, and two (2) will be left standing for wildlife. Just two.
CHARLOTTESVILLE, VIRGINA - The Earth Liberation Front has taken credit for its second known action of 2004 with an attack on equipment at a building site in Charlottesville, Virginia. The site, a 30-acre clearcut slated for the development of 300 duplex-apartment units, a bank, a Target store and some restaurants, was targeted as part of the ELF's ongoing actions against large-scale developments going up at the expense of what little green space is left in North America.
A group of thirty members and supporters of the Industrial Workers of the World marched up 13th avenue in Eugene chanting "Union bust, lose our truxst!" and kept themselves warm by vigorous sign waving and singing on a gray and cold Monday, February 9. Mother Kali's bookstore has illegally locked out the four employees, all members of IWW Industrial Union 660 in a blatant attempt to bust the union.
I had the misfortune to read the recent article in the Tribune titled "Activist indulges capitalistic cravings". It was written by Jim Redden. Now I have heard a couple people claim that Redden is something of a progressive, but this article is just another example of useless trash pushed out by for-profit commercial media which offers nothing of value to the reader.
Here is an entire page wasted on a story about an activist who opened a restaurant, and wrote a book, which apparently some people disagree with. Redden claims in a bold photo caption that "critics both liberal and conservative call him (Rosebraugh) two-faced." However, reading through the article you will only find the single conservative critic doing so. Redden relies entirely on an anonymous posting from Indymedia, which is itself most likely from a right wing critic, to back-up his claim. In fact, there isn't a single interview with any activist to provide another viewpoint. Beyond that, the article does not give much interesting information about the restaurant. It does not review the book. It does not attempt any discussion of some of the issues that might be of value to inform readers about and at least in some part, redeem itself. No, this entire page is a complete waste of people's time. Particularly in light of other serious issues that could use more public attention. For contrast I will mention just one. Hanford. Here, just miles away, is a vast repository of radioactive and chemical toxic waste. There are 172 building sized buried tanks, some 70 of which have already leaked millions of gallons of high level radioactive waste. Waste which is leaking into aquifers that eventually feed into the Columbia river. Now that is something to be terrified of.
A man named Kevin Cooper has been given a date to die: On Feb. 10, 2004, the State of California plans to kill him, by pumping him full of poison. Cooper, convicted back in 1984 of the slaying of 3 members of the Ryen clan, and a visiting family friend, was also charged with stabbing an 8-year old boy, but luckily the child survived. Why lucky? Well, apart from the obvious reason (his sheer survival), Joshua Ryen saw who attacked him, and upon recovery told police that it was 3 white or Latino men who slew his family, his friend, and tried to kill him. When young Josh saw TV news accounts of the attacks, he turned to a cop who was present, and exclaimed, when the picture of Kevin Cooper flashed across the screen, "That wasn't the guy who did it. It was 3 Mexicans."
But, San Bernardino officials didn't care; what does it matter that the lone surviving victim cleared their suspect? It meant nothing. They had their man -- and on the 10th of February, they wanna kill him. Kevin Cooper, now a man of 45 years, has spent the last 19 years of his life on California's Death Row, for a series of brutal crimes -- that he did not commit. Cooper turned his cell into a school room; studying writing, politics and African-American history. He has grown into a vibrant, talented and educated individual -- yet California still wants to extinguish his light.
ot only was the only living eyewitness ignored; but shortly after the murders, a local woman came forward to tell police that she thought her boyfriend was involved in the grisly killings. Why? When he came home the night of the slayings, she said, he was wearing a pair of overalls, drenched in blood. The woman turned them over to the cops. Before the day was over, the overalls were pitched into the station's dumpster. Did it matter that the man was wearing a t-shirt the color and brand of the t-shirt found in the scene -- it also, bloody? No. Did it matter that he owned a hatchet, like a weapon used in the Ryen home, and it was conveniently missing from the couple's home. Police and prosecutors told jurors that a bloody shoe- print found at the scene conclusively proved Cooper's guilt. Were the jurors told that Deputy William Baird had a pair of prison shoes in his (crime) lab, which were Cooper's size? What they also didn't know was that the Deputy, post-trial, was fired for stealing five pounds of heroin from the evidence locker--five pounds--both to use and to sell--to drug dealers! [READ MORE...]
On the surface, it is said that we gathered to support Leonard's freedom and denounce his incarceration; but there was more to the gathering in the larger sense. A political prisoner, especially an indigenous one, is merely a symptom of a society locked in a military/oil/prison/auto-industrial-complex/police state; and indigenous people have been experiencing this imperialistic intrusion and invasion since "pre-history." We recognize the broken promises of the United 'Snakes' of America, and yesterday's movement was not a reactionary response, but instead a proactive networking and gathering: a solid stance of indigenous sovereignty that has never and will never fully be conquered, a force of strong family that is evolving while retaining the teachings of the distant past.
The group walked to the Courthouse in Tacoma, where a PA system was awaiting powerful speakers. Offerings were given and the ceremony opened with the Aztec dancers, the traditional bursting into the present.
Finally, you'll see a picture of people swarming around the Tacoma Dome. This was not the Peltier group! There was a huge public send-off for military youngsters getting hauled away to Iraq. On my way to the Peltier Rally, I took a wrong turn on my bike and saw the massive amounts of people going to the worship the altar of death that the Peltier folks are working to decolonize.
Howard Dean's ability to raise money using the internet completely failed to bring those who wrote checks to the polls in Vancouver, Washington yesterday. I spent two hours in the Laborer's Hall on Andreson, wandering, listening and watching.
The average age of voters was 50. About 2% minorities. These are not the representative demographics of the community. Dean pulled maybe 5% in most precincts, but as the voting rolled out many quickly shifted to Kerry. From all appearances, Kerry's supporters were more affluent, more established, smarter, and better able to wrangle loose votes in the room.
I met and observed four or five smart operatives, each working for Kerry, who basically delivered their precincts by attending the democrat planning meetings, and making 100 phone calls within their district. No one doing this for Dean. No one for Kucinich.
related: [ Kucinich Beating Clark, Edwards in Washington ]
In a subtitle, soft-pedaling the Bush administration's recent free-fall in ratings, the LA Times-Washington Post Service said: "The President, in a rare TV interview as his ratings fall off a little, stands behind the war and the CIA director."
Meet The Press (which might be better called "find this program") aired at 6 am on Sunday morning; the article in the OREGONIAN appeared in Sunday's paper . . . which most people would not see until well after 6 am.
Obviously Bush felt that a gesture was necessary, but not necessarily an easily accessible or genuine gesture. Cosseted by the President-friendly Tim Russert of NBC, Bush used the program as a platform to launch his election-year counterattack against Democrats. After having assigned responsibility for intelligence failures to the CIA and damning George Tenet to eventual dismissal as a scapegoat, Bush followed with the inevitable faint praise for the director. Tenet -- like an abused plant made to produce hybrid fruit and then left without water -- probably saw these measly drips as far too little and too late.
Is it irresponsible to take children to political protests? Some argue it is a good experience for children to participate, first-hand, in political organizing, marches, protests, and the making of history. I am glad my mother took me, as a child, to civil rights protests, and actions against the Vietnam War, during the 1960's and 1970's. I do not believe textbooks can convey the feeling one gets when surrounded by riot police, while trying to peacefully demonstrate. I am glad I took my son to protests of the Gulf War in the 1990's, and the Iraq War in 2003. I feel it was part of his education to see nonviolent free speech and riot police clash on his own city streets, while with his mom for safety. But could I really guarantee my son's safety anywhere that riot police were present? Some argue that children should not be taken onto the front lines of American political change. But as an activist single mother, I could not just sit home, and not protest wars, simply because I had a child. And children are supposedly our hope for the future. Thus it seems essential to include them in our political struggles, if we want the issues to live longer than us. Are certain protests acceptable for children to attend, but not others? How does one determine which protest activities are appropriate for our children? How does a politically active parent balance their own needs to protest a war, for instance, with the responsibilities of parenting?
I surveyed a group of activists on this topic, from different parts of America; from Chicago, New York City, and Seattle, as well as from Wisconsin, Maryland, California, and Colorado, and also from England and Canada. More in the group self-identified as anarcho-feminists, than the other categories cited, which included radical leftists, anarchist parent of color, anarchist, Green Party member, progressive humanist atheist, and others. Seven of the 12 people interviewed are street medics, and 10 of those surveyed are parents. And only two of those surveyed say they had parents who took them to political protests. So, basically, this article is written from the viewpoint of first-generation (except for two), politically-active, parents, and street medics. Yet even within this somewhat politically-homogenous group, the opinions on this topic of kids at protests differ.
Months after the FTAA Ministerial in Miami, things are starting to come into focus. Not that the gobal justice movement ever saw it out of focus, but the "authorities" are starting to see what they levied in the streets of Miami.
It is coming to light everywhere that the police in Miami used excessive force and were definately not in the right...violating (or completely ignoring) first and fourth amendment rights. A judge hearing the cases of free trade protesters said in court that he saw "no less than 20 felonies committed by police officers"; this was a first step toward the realization of what happened.
A member of the Civilian Investigative Panel (CIP), who had previously prasied police chief John Timoney, resigned after his credibility was called into question by global justice activists. At the most recent CIP hearing, the Miami police admit absolute responsibility for the way activists were treated during the ministerial. Recently Miami Activist Defense filed a lawsuit attacking the Miami ordinance used during FTAA protests.
Early this afternoon, a worker at the Cascadia Rising Infoshop said that a man stopped by who worked for the Forest Service. His job, he said, was to go to environemntal organizations and find out what they care about in the Forest. His name is William Kay, and he has tried to find out information in the past by calling. Today when he approached the Infoshop, his story changed a few times. A bit later, someone else called to discuss Tre Arrow.
William Kay said he was in town from California, and asked if this was CFA. CFA no longer rents the space. He went on to ask if people involved with CFA come around. Then he said that he does field surveys and, when asked, said that he works for a local non-profit environmental group which the Infoshop worker wasn't familiar with. When asked exactly what he does, he said that he works for the Forest Service out of Estecada and goes around to different environmental groups asking what they care about in the Forest.
So far I've piled a lot of complaints onto PPRC and the various rallies PPRC runs, but I've also been talking about something else. Whether I was writing about the need for more equitable distribution of power, or just pointing out how blatantly dishonest or misguided PPRC leaders were, I've always been trying to address what it means to be free.
There's a big problem with my attempting to write about this subject:
I don't know anything about freedom.
I don't know what it would look like. I'd even be so bold as to say that nobody in the entire industrialized world knows what freedom is, what it feels like. We're all inhabitants of various strata inside a global spectacle-- we're the people who watch the big screen, or the little screens that are suddenly strewn everywhere, but who can't act on or change anything. [ Read more... ]
WASHINGTON - February 4 - A civil suit filed today in federal court calls for an emergency temporary restraining order against the City of Miami's unconstitutional restrictions on the right to political protest
Miami, FL - A civil lawsuit was filed today in federal court to challenge a controversial ordinance passed by Miami City Commission days prior to protests against the Free Trade Area of the Americas (FTAA) meetings in November 2003. The ordinance was used to chill First Amendment activities during mass demonstrations against the FTAA. The lawsuit also attacks two other Miami ordinances regulating demonstrations on public streets and sidewalks as unconstitutional restrictions on First Amendment rights.
Attorneys working with the National Lawyers Guild (NLG) Mass Defense Committee and Miami Activist Defense (MAD) filed the lawsuit on behalf of Plaintiff Lake Worth Global Justice Group. Members of the plaintiff group were subject to unlawful searches, detentions and arrests during the FTAA protests. The defendants include the City of Miami, City Manager Joe Arriola, and Miami Police Chief John Timoney.
"Lake Worth Global Justice members were harassed and arrested by police during the FTAA protests," said Cara Jennings, a member of the plaintiff group. "We were not only stopped and detained, but we also witnessed numerous people being prevented from engaging in lawful protest activities in public spaces around Miami." [ Read more... ]
Cameron chose to focus her presentation Monday night on one of her current research projects in order to explain the process of animal research, how a study is developed and carried out. Cameron is studying the link between exercise and brain function. She explained that she began this particular study with the knowledge that people who exercise have better brain function. More study is needed though, she claimed, because we need to know if other lifestyle factors might be involved in this phenomenon (for example many people who exercise also don't smoke). In order to explore this connection she has some of her test monkeys run on tread mills and others are forced to be sedentary. She then conducts cognitive tests on the monkeys and compares the performances of the two groups. The shocking truth revealed by these studies is that the monkeys who exercise perform better on the tests! She says these monkeys are "more alert and more engaged" than the ones denied exercise. This leads her to conclude that (as was known at the beginning of the study) that exercise is good for the brain. (While she has apparently affirmed this foregone conclusion, she failed to explain how this study can teach us something new about the effects of lifestyle on human brain function. The lifestyle of these monkeys consists of living alone in barren, 2 feet x 2 feet cages in a laboratory in completely artificial situations, and they are of course monkeys, not people.)
[ Animal Rights Vigil at OHSU President's Home | OHSU Bio-terror lab- Public Meeting Reports | OHSU Primate Center Expanding - Letters Needed! | Blowing the Whistle on Lab Coat Welfare ]
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