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PRANKING 30.12.2003 14:50
Portlander forms anti-terror, anti-almanac group, to turn in books to FBI
Portland resident Eric Berg announces the formation of Americans Against Terror and Knowledge (ATTK) in response to a Federal Bureau of Investigation bulletin issued to law enforcement agencies Dec. 24, which says terrorists, may use almanacs "to assist with target selection and pre-operational planning." Berg will start his anti-terror, anti-knowledge campaign at 10 a.m., Jan. 2, 2004 in front of local FBI offices, 1500 SW First Ave., Portland. Berg will voluntarily turn in all his almanacs to the FBI. "Last night, I was browsing through the Time Almanac 2004 with Information Please while watching South Park," Berg added. "It was the first time I had a chance to pick it up since I took it out of my stocking Christmas morning. I had no idea I was aiding al Qaeda and other terrorist groups. The thought of it makes me sick to my stomach. "I've received almanacs for Christmas for at least 20 years and I've kept all of them," Berg said. "Some friends of mine call me the Man of Knowledge. I hope the simple act of giving up my books inspires others to do the same.


Israel Police Shut Down Indymedia-Israel
The Association for Civil Rights in Israel (ACRI) states in a letter to the Attorney General of Israel: ''The investigation against Indymedia Israel has turned into intimidation, harming Freedom of Speech on the Internet.''

Tuesday, 30 December 2003, 10:08 am (Translated from Hebrew ) Police investigators are attempting to throw responsibility on Indymedia Israel's operators, for publications appearing in he "open publishing zone" of the website. This is done illegally and against the recommendations of a professional committee of the Israel Ministry of Justice.

Fear of abuse on the internet, says Attorney Pinchuk, must not bring about the destruction of the platform itself. We can assume that the invention of the airplane assisted criminals occasionally to escape, but the solution to this problem lies in the field of extradition law and international agreements, not in the destruction of airplanes or placing responsibility on pilots or stewardesses.

Therefore, Attorney Pinchuk requests a permanent end to the investigation and a cessation of harassment against the website operators for publications published by others on the open platform on the website.

Shamai Leibowitz, lawyer for Indymedia Israel, adds: ''This is a dangerous attempt by the Israeli government, to quash Freedom of Speech and the Freedom to Disseminate Information. It uses fear and threats in order to suppress critique of the Israeli government and what is occurring in the Occupied Palestinian Territories. This police investigation reminds us, to our deep regret, of the situation in the book 1984 by George Orwell.'' Full Article


ECONOMY 29.12.2003 15:11
Is the US Bankrupt?
This December 2003 article is translated from the German by local translator, Marc Batko
A bankruptcy occurs when the debtor can no longer afford his debt service. In the US economy, spending increases strongly while revenues structurally fall. In the medium term, the US is unable to pay for its debt service! This will lead to worldwide shortfalls, especially for countries whose revenues come from the US [for example, oil] or where the US is the second currency.

Seen historically, the US in the last 200+ years gained the reputation of an economic power and a secure haven. This was based on its export power and geographic position. A creeping erosion of its economic power and security has occurred unnoticed by the general public.


LABOR 29.12.2003 14:32
Update on contract struggle of Powells Books workers
"bookfreak" writes:
"About a month ago, there was a ton of news about the negotiations at Powell's, and the struggle against management. For a month, there has been no news, and the local 5 website is way out of date. Did these folks win a contract? Did they lose? Should we boycott? Is there a story out there?"

"powell's union worker" responds:
"The upshot is...while the strike days caused some financial pain to the corporation, Management made clear to the union that they were willing to weather the called strike days...which would've been the weekend of Dec. 13-14 and the Sat. before Christmas, Dec. 27. Meanwhile, Management was doing all it could to split the workers...and pit those (mostly younger workers) who value cost-of-living raises against those (mostly older or with dependents) who value good medical benefits. They also were trying to demonize the union for calling strikes, and to get workers to cross the lines (mostly without success)."


29.12.2003 02:29
Cheney Visit Jan 13 2004
On January 13th 2004 Vice pResident Dick Cheney will be in Portland to drum up support in the swing state of Oregon. This will also undoubtedly cause a strain on the city of Portland for "free speech zones" and police "protection".

This will be yet another event where people will be excluded becasue of class related issues. The invitations to this event are $1000 just to be there and $10,000 to have your picture taken with Dick, reinforcing that this government is for the people (with money).

There are grassroots organizing attempts being made to disrupt this visit. It is still unclear where Cheney will be or what time he will be arriving. If you would like to help cover this event with Indymedia please contact us to get involved!

JUNE 02 CHENEY VISIT: Vice pResident Cheney protested, welcomed, in Portland | KBOO STORY ON CHENEY PROTEST

BACKGROUND INFO: The Evil Cheney | Cheney Says War Criticism Is Misguided | Cheney Firm won$3.8 Billlion Contracts from Government


Latest dispatch from prisoner Jeff 'Free' Luers
Drawing by Jeff Free Luers 2003 As another calendar year draws near its end and I am a year older, I find myself reflecting on this year of my life. I've had to face some tough challenges and learn to accept things about my life that I just don't want to. Often, I've written and said that I have come to terms with being here for the next 2 decades but I haven't. Each day gets harder, not easier. I find myself questioning decisions I've made. I'm looking back on 25 years of life and asking myself, what have I accomplished?

I have some good memories, made some amazing friends (some of the finest people in the world you all are too). I helped save a forest and I gave all I could to a movement I believed in. Believed is the key word because I'm losing faith. In the face of all the horror stories I read and hear about everyday, I'm running out of words of inspiration.

I live with some of the most fucked up people in this state, and product of their environment or not, how do you or I inspire them to change? How do we stop domestic violence? How do we convince the average person to stop participating in a capitalist lie?

We need viable solutions and real alternatives and we have to do more than come up with them, we have to provide them. That has to become a priority. That alone is not enough though and even though we are unprepared for the fall of empire, we have to fight for it. Never, ever, ever again should the police, or anyone, be allowed to rape or beat someone to death. There must be consequences.

There is a small group of wealthy elite running our world into the ground. They have barricaded themselves behind the most extraordinary security the world has ever seen because they live in fear that one day the rest of the world will be against them. That day is fast approaching. They know it, they are preparing and they are ready. Are you?

I'm dedicating this next year of my life to finding real solutions. I want to be inspired by accomplishment. I want to believe again.

Jeffrey Luers #13797671
OSP 2605 State Street
Salem, OR 97310


LEGACIES 28.12.2003 07:27
Hanford activist Dick Belsey died
Dick Belsey worked on cleaning up Hanford -- the largest nuclear waste dump in the Western Hemisphere -- for many years. After his death last month Hanford activists wrote about their memories of Dick on the Hanford email list. This is worth reading for what it says about what it means to be an activist. -- L.P.


Benefit Movie Night
A benefit movie night for Hysteria collective and counseling for sexual assault survivors

De Toda La Vida is a documentary on the life of the anarcha-feminist organizzation Mujeres Libres during the Spanish revolution. It includes interviews with numerous former members where they discuss revolutionary Spain and the involvement of women in the war, their relationship to the other anarchist organizations at the time and their life since. Decades later Mujeres Libres still remains a model for revolutionary feminist theory and action.

Place of Rage is a documentary with lots of interviews with Angela Davis and June Jordon discussing their roles as women in the radical '70s.

Monday Dec. 29th
6 pm at Mississippi Pizza (3552 N. Mississippi)
$3-5 suggested donation

any questions ----> hysteriacollective@yahoo.com


Local Community Television Program on Mad Cow Disease
"A Growing Concern" this week will feature a recently taped telephone interview with Howard Lyman, author of "Mad Cowboy." The program is a live call in every Friday evening from 7-8 pm. There should be time for calls during the last 20 minutes or so. [ Listen to the interview ]

Besides the phone interview with Howard Lyman, the program will also feature a couple flash animations on the subject from the internet: the Meatrix and Cows With Guns.
And, also featured will be an excerpt from a segment from Wednesday's Democracy Now program. the clip is from Goodman's interview with John Stauber, author of a book on Mad Cow Disease, and a more recent effort, Weapons of Mass Deception. An audio file of this will be added to the PhilosopherSeed Audio Page as soon as possible.
"A Growing Concern" is produced through the facilities of Portland Community Media (formerly Portland Cable Access) and repeats:
Channel 23 Sundays at 10:00 pm
Channel 22 Thursdays at 10:00 pm

[ 'Mad cow' prions may permanently contaminate processing plants ]


5.5 Nevada Quake Near Fed Gov't Nuclear Storage Site Hidden 0n USGS - Why?
Interstate trucking of nuclear waste The US government is a traitor to democracy. It is risking everyone with its crony capitalist ways.

The 5.5 EARTHQUAKE near nuclear repository site Yucca Mountain, NV, occurred on December 23, 2003. And the US gov't obviously shows its contempt for Americans by dropping the whole event down the scientific memory hole. However, other states reported it. How can Ameicans know just how risky Yucca Mountain (and nuclear power) is, if the government keeps them uninformed INTENTIONALLY? The only one who benefits from Yucca Mountain are the private nuclear contractors, instead of the people. If we stop all nuclear construction, like Germany has already agreed to do, we help stop American fascism as well.

It is posted here: www.gfz-potsdam.de/geofon/alerts/ev031223182946/

www.NuclearNeigborhoods.org | www.hanfordwatch.org | www.shundahai.org/


Whispering Wheel Makes Buses 50% More Efficient
No blood for Hummers Have you ever been offended by smoke-belching roaring trucks and busses? Or offended by the roar of modified mufflers? If so, you might be outnumbered but you are not alone. You have friends in Old Europe.

The U.S. transportation industry should be embarrassed and ashamed. Methods and technologies for reducing the consumption of fossil fuels exist. To the extent that they do not exist, they can be developed with research. Why don't we? Why the hell not?

"A new Dutch invention can make cars, busses and other vehicles no less than 50 percent more efficient and thus more environmentally friendly. Better still, the technology is already available; it all comes down to a smart combination of existing systems.", according to Radio Nederland. Link to this article -- www.rnw.nl/science/html/031215wheel.html.

I suspect that it will never catch on here because these things will be too quiet and would deprive us of that illusion of great power when we step on the gas pedal. The other day a brand new shiny SUV just roared past us with a brand new shiny muffler that was clearly engineered to enhance that V-8 sound. We love our noise.

And of course such vehicles would violate the principles of consumerisim and considered un-American. Could you imagine the oil industry panic if demand for the stuff was reduced by 50%? Nah, that will never happen. I read here the other day where Shanghai is outlawing bikes to make the streets safe for Hummers -- http://portland.indymedia.org/en/2003/12/277256.shtml.

PS, here is a link to the company website -- www.e-traction.com. .


ANARCHIST JESUS 26.12.2003 03:39
Merry Christmas To All
Why would a radical anarchist care about Christmas? Isn't it just a commercialized glut of shopping days and gift wrap made of broken trees, a celebration of consumption with a little dose of state-sponsored Judeo-Christian oppression thrown in for good measure?

Well...no. I love Christmas. I'm not the least bit sheepish about it, either. I'll tell you why.

Although scholars believe Jesus was probably born in the springtime, we celebrate Christmas near the time of the Solstice. Why? A cynical soul might say that it came to be this way because Christians wanted to co-opt an ancient pagan holiday to lure people into the new religion. I think, though, that it's deeper than that. Christianity wasn't always about televangelists, or God-a-thons, or oppressive dictates. Yes, I know, it's hard to think of it any other way now. But these, like the impulse to capitalize on everything, are the weaknesses of the human condition, and they'll creep in anywhere we let them. It doesn't mean they're intrinsic to the spiritual impulse that gave rise to the original traditions. No, I'm no Christian, and I'm not here to proselytize. But I think it's possible to see meaning and truth in any religion, once we remove the layers of misuse and control that have collected like dust over the years. This is the dust of the elite, settled over the spiritual seekings of the people. Shake it off, and look again.


MEDIA CRITICISM | SELECTION 2004 25.12.2003 10:52
What About Kucinich?
left-wing blackout? I'm really confused about why people on the left are harping on past wrongs and not focusing on the one democratic party candidate who has walked his talk in politics, stood his ground to defend public interest, including public power & media reform, and health care, wants the U.S. to back out of NAFTA and the WTO, and who has consistently been against the war in Iraq.

He is the only candidate that was in a position to vote, and who actually DID vote against giving presidential powers to start the war in Iraq. the realistic solutions he proposes make so much sense that the media and politicians are desperately trying to black this awesome candidate out - not even trying to discredit him, because they can't.

The fact that he is being ignored by Mainstream media, is a good reason that he needs to be talked about MORE on independent media.

This guy walks his talk...go to the website for TONS of info on this ethical politician... Just because the media wants him to be ignored and the Republicrats insist on a media blackout as their only means of discreditation of this candidate, doesn't mean we have to follow their lead!

www.kucinich.us | Kucinich On NAFTA | Dean Misrepresents Kucinich's Record


KATU spinning Mad Cow already
KATU (Portland broadcast television channel 2) just ran their take on the mad-cow incident. Their 11AM "news" show stated that prions have not been found in beef cuts or milk--and conveniently omitted the fact that cheap burger meat contains the spinal cord and brain tissue that reliably contains mad cow disease. They also ran a prions-can-be-our-friends segment that cheerfully passed on the research on prions as nanontechnological metallurgical tools.

They also omitted the fact that the beef producers had to have been feeding downer-cow bits to other cows in order to pass on the disease.

Another person comments:
axiom: the mere instance of spinning, downplaying, or public relations campaigns instigated by corporations or industries, solicited and intentional, or in this case done free of charge by an unrelated industry, the corporate media, points to the prescence of a sensitive point or even perhaps some fact in the charges being spun, downplayed, denied or given the p.r. treatment.

axiom: the more truth in the charges, the faster the spinning will spin.


RESISTANCE 24.12.2003 19:47
The Snail as Bearer of Hope: On the Zapatistas
This article originally published in: Ossietzky 17/2003 is translated from the German by local translator, Marc Batko.

The Zapatistas have reported back about their work behind the scenes in Mexico's political center. Many ears listened; millions of eyes watched. The shocked Mexican government reacted on one hand with empty diplomatic phrases and on the other with intensified force. Ten years after their rebellion at a great fiesta with over 10,000 guests including representatives of international solidarity groups, the Zapatistas celebrated the transition from revolutionary organizational forms to five representative administrative structures.

The newly-formed "councils of good government" that are also called Caracoles (snails) embrace 30 autonomous communities, more than a million people altogether. The snail symbolizes the efforts of the Zapatistas for a self-government of "obedient governance": the spiral of a collective decision-making process. The National Zapatista Liberation Army (EZLN), the military part of the Zapatista movement in the past will be limited in the future to the role of a defensive organization of the autonomous area in southern Mexico. EZLN-subcommandante Marcos yields his representative role: "I give back your hearing, your language and your perspective... As the EZLN, we believe we have accomplished our part of the changes."


SELECTION 2004 | DEAN WATCH 24.12.2003 12:22
Doctor of Deception: Howard Dean at it Again
Defendant Howard Dean managed to state to that he "completely pulled ourselves out" of the Judicial Watch lawsuit where Dean is named as a defendant, and Defendant Howard Dean, through counsel, appeared and filed an answer to the Judicial Watch lawsuit calling for dismissal of the same.

Huh, how does a defendant to a civil lawsuit "pull out" and wash their hands of the matter? Answer: they can't. Deception, smoke and mirrors will not hide the plain truth that Defendant Dean filed an answer to the Judicial Watch complaint on the same day he stated that he was distancing himself from the suit. Defendant Dean's papers requested that the suit be eventually dismissed.

The fact is that defendant Howard Dean can not lawfully "pull out" of this dispute and, in fact, regardless of what lawyer filed Dean's pleadings in Vermont Superior Court on 12/23/03, the filings belong to Dean not to his counsel on the case. These papers have the same legal force and effect as if they were penned by Dean's hand. They were filed with the consent and authorization of Defendant Dean.

Dean's contradictory statements and conduct on 12/23/03 are the ultimate test of just how gullible are his supporters and how long the media will overlook his deceptive conduct. [ Read more... ]

background: [ JUDICIAL WATCH - WATCHING HOWARD DEAN | other pdx indy articles in this ongoing story ]


POP CULTURE 24.12.2003 12:21
The Racist Tapestry of "Lord of the Rings" movies
I don't imagine that it was the intention of the director or the producers of the Lord of the Rings films to paint a racist stereotypical tapestry over what could be described as a basic set of principles of humanity's behavior in the natural environment and with each other. However, the fact is that the only people of skin color in the entire three part series of films are all associated with the Dark Lord Sauron, the destruction of the earth and all of its occupants. Not to mention the elephant riding mercenaries that resemble the cultures of the Arab world as well as Africa, Persia and East Asia and the fact that the Monarch of the land of Rohan, King Théoden a white guy yelled out "You great warriors of the West" in the final part of his speech to rouse the troops into battle in the third film.

In these times when a homicidal maniac from Texas (the Texas capital punishment policy under Bush) has stolen the American throne and called for a "crusade" against the "evil doers" in nations that white people have been invading, terrorizing, raping and pillaging in for 5000 years with zero provocation, I think we could manage some cultural sensitivity in our popular culture which one must acknowledge has a powerful propaganda affect on the general population that participates in it.

Can you imagine how people of skin color, of Persian, Arab and East Asian ethnic background feel when they come out of these films where all the heroes are white and all the "evil doers" are of dark skin.


ANTI-WAR 23.12.2003 13:30
Save the Date - March 20, 2004: The World Still Says No to War
Momentum is building across the globe for the Global Day of Action against War and Occupation on March 20, the one-year anniversary of the U.S. bombing and invasion of Iraq.

On that day millions around the globe will take to the streets to say YES to peace and NO to pre-emptive war and occupation. Joining with growing numbers of military families and soldiers, we will call for an end to the occupation of Iraq and Bush's militaristic foreign policies. March 20th will be the first time the world's "other superpower," as the New York Times described us, will take center stage since February 15th, when more than ten million people across the globe expressed their opposition to Bush's looming war on Iraq.

The US protests will also take on the war at home. We will express the growing opposition to the so-called PATRIOT Act, authorizing political arrests, indefinite detentions, domestic spying, and religious and racial profiling. We will call for an end to the mass detentions and deportations of innocent immigrants in the name of fighting terrorism. We will say no to massive military spending amidst vast cuts in vital domestic social and economic programs.


TACTICS 23.12.2003 12:06
Resistance, IWW style: Cramming the system
I've been reading "Joe Hill" by Wallace Stegner, a "biographical novel" about a famous member of the Industrial Workers of the World. The IWW was America's most militant union from 1905 to the early 20s. They believed in fighting. A lot of them were killed or jailed. Some of their strategy, however, was nonviolent, and we could learn something from it.

"The Wobblies crammed half the jails from Everett to San Diego with belligerent workers fighting ordinances against free speech and street meetings, piling in until they jammed a town's whole system of law and order, pouring down from the woods and the camps, beating their way up from skid roads and winter boardinghouses, streaming in from the harvest country. If they did not like a jail's food they 'built a battleship,' pounding on the walls and floors until frantic police turned firehoses on them or gave up. They organized and kept their jails spotless, and they sang till townspeople gathered laughing outside to listen."

We need to make ourselves visible by speaking and passing out literature in the streets, and we should think about cramming the system. That should be easy to do in Oregon, since voters are not willing to tax themselves to support the state, and "public safety," a euphemism for putting working-class people in jail, is being starved along with everything else.


CORPORATE DOMINANCE 23.12.2003 10:52
Home Depot: America's Do-It-Yourself Bush Fundraising Store?
President Bush, after a major fundraiser in Baltimore on December 5, made a stop at a nearby Home Depot to talk about the economy. But the site confused some people, so much so that the Baltimore Sun ran an article entitled "A Presidential Mystery," which concluded that "nobody seems to know why" he was going to the Home Depot. Well, a little digging provided the answer to this mystery: Home Depot is a major contributor to President Bush's campaigns. Home Depot executives, employees and their families have given more than $1.5 million to the GOP since 1999, most of it in "soft money," before that practice was outlawed last year. The company's political action committee has also already contributed $31,000 directly to the Bush-Cheney 2004 re-election campaign. And guess what? Buried in two small paragraphs on page 710 of the massive, stalled energy bill is a measure that would lift a tariff on Chinese-made ceiling fans - with Home Depot being the largest retailer of said fans. The measure, inserted during a closed-door conference committee and undebated in either house of Congress, would save Home Depot and other smaller companies about $48 million, at taxpayer expense, of course.


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