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COMMENTARY, INDY-STYLE 19.06.2004 11:15
The Press "Dramatizes" Prisoner Abuses, Scolds Angry Rumsfeld
Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld seemed really irritated at all the questions asked of him recently, on June 17, 2004, during his press conference at the Pentagon. Not only was he agitated, but he took time out to lecture the press, as if he was a paternalistic figure qualified to give advice about integrity. It was laughable. I am sure it was very hard for the journalists present to not burst out laughing, I was laughing out loud watching it on CSPAN! Hard questions about ghost detainees got Rumsfeld flustered as he tried to change the subject by lecturing the press about "dramatizing" American torture patterns and how that lowers the morale of the troops and puts them in danger.

Rumsfeld started off the press conference reporting cheerfully that 63% of Iraqi citizens believe a new government will improve their lives in Iraq. He went on to say that the "global war on terror" had several positive side effects: 1) The Reservists were called up. Now, I could swear that was what he said, maybe I got that wrong, but I don't think so. How that is "good" is beyond me. The second benefit he said we were getting from the "global war on terror" was that the army was becoming more self-reliant and lastly, he said it had catapulted us into a new posture, as our old posturing was built around the Cold War framework, and these are new times, with new "enemies." General Peter Pace, the Vice-President of the Joint Chiefs of Staff then spoke for a brief moment, and then reporters let the questions fly. Rumsfeld's cheerful mood quickly changed to more resemble an angry father annoyed with a child who is not obeying his authority blindly.

[ Other stories by Kirsten Anderberg ]


PART ONE OF A THREE PART SERIES: “The BOregonian Bamboozle: the Newhouse Clan of New York and the Corruption of Monopoly Publishing”
Journalists and Readers of the local independent media are often puzzled by the sheer blandness, the constant and annoying right wing viewpoints, and the obsessive use of government and "official" sources by the giant corporate media; actually, the reasons for this are quite elementary. In the case of the BOregonian, the crooked and sinister story traces itself to a family of owners, true bosses in every sense of the word, called by the furtive name of Newhouse, who have nothing to do with Portland, nor Oregon for that matter, but instead reside in the New York metro area.


The Franchise of Pride
NW Pride is this weekend, brought to you by Bud Light, Absolut Vodka, a lube company and some energy drink with the nerve to call itself Gay Fuel. Queer Revolution wants people to come out and say that we are not proud of this. As the queer community enters into a nascent consumer status, so too Pride becomes a celebration of this newly acquired market power: Pride is transformed into a vehicle for capitalist appropriation and identity consolidation, rather than serving the important function of promoting the continuing struggles of Queer people and their historical role in challenging power. We demand a new queer activism. We are not interested in "brand loyalty" to those "brave" corporations who first bid to divest us of our money. We won't drink a Bud Light, Absolut or Gay Fuel beverage to support the commercial assimilation of our community.

We will be meeting at the corner of SW 13th and Stark to meet the parade at 11 am on Sunday, June 20th. The parade doesn't start until 11:15 am but we will be rallying until it comes by. Bring yourself, bring a friend, bring a bike and people on foot will be needed too.

After the parade, join us down on the waterfront for our anti-capitalist gathering outside of the corporate buy-a-rainbow fest. We'll have free drinks, free food, live entertainment and various games including inappropriate uses of vegetables. There will also be a free sale of various items. Bring some items to give away or trade if you'd like to. Look for the pink and black flags after the march.


18.06.2004 00:04
Rob 'Los Ricos' Thaxton: Imprisoned since June 18, 1999 aka J18
Robert Thaxton J18 is coming up. Do you believe it has been five years? Our first big 'day of action against the global economy'! Well, Rob is still in prison. He has two years left too.

On September 3rd 1999, anarchist Robert Thaxton was sentenced to a 7 year sentence on charges of assault and riot. This was for his part in the June 18th "International Day of Action Against the Global Economy" Reclaim the Streets action held in Eugene, Oregon. Attempting to make an example of Rob, Judge Bearden sentenced Rob to a mandatory minimum sentence of 5 years for the assault charge and stacked the 2 year riot charge on top making Rob's sentence to 7 years-all for throwing a rock at a cop in self-defense!

Don't forget the Eugene riot and the person we lost that day.

Robert Thaxton's address: #12112716, OSP, 2605 State Street, Salem, OR 97310.


17.06.2004 23:49
Oregon trying to limit books inmates can have.
support the incarcerated- PDX BOOKS TO PRISONERS Western Prison Project writes:There are a number of changes proposed to Chapter 291-117, which deals with Inmate Property Rules. We are most concerned with a change that is not a part of the formal Administrative Rules. Attached to the rules change proposal is a document entitled "Authorized Inmate Property for General Population Inmates". It does not appear to be part of the Administrative Rules, but it specifically states that prisoners will be limited to: "Personal and authorized books, limit ten..."

Given the importance of education in reducing recidivism, it does not make sense to limit the number of books that prisoners can own. It also is not clear what the criteria will be for "authorized books". The date for submitting comments on the proposed Personal Property Inmate rule has been extended to June 21, 2004.

[ Free Asks for Your Help Fighting ODOC Rules | Text of Current Oregon Administrative Rule (OAR) for prisoner personal property | OAR for rules development for ODOC | Rulemaking bulletins |


17.06.2004 23:46
Preventing Homelessness Among People Leaving Prisons
"Preventing Homelessness Among People Leaving Prison," produced by the Vera Institute of Justice, examines homelessness among former inmates, shares examples of corrections agencies' efforts to address it, and offers insights from Vera's Project Greenlight, an in-prison program that provided comprehensive transition services, including housing assistance, to felony offenders reentering communities in New York City. Included are details on Project Greenlight's housing assistance program and suggestions for practitioners interested or engaged in similar efforts.

See: http://www.vera.org/publication_pdf/209_407.pdf


17.06.2004 01:37
Old-growth currently being logged in Umpqua National Forest
Timber sale monitors are reporting active logging at the Peanuts Timber Sale in the Diamond Lake District of Umpqua National Forest. After years of controversy, The US Forest Service and D.R. Johnson Lumber are continuing forward with plans to decimate the Peanuts and Pig-out sales, in the area surrounding Toketee Hot Springs, Lemolo Lake, and Toketee Lake. These two sales were sold in 1997 and 1998, Peanuts to D.R. Johnson, Pig-out to Roseburg Forest Products, 400 acres in total-10 million board feet, approx 2000 log truck loads. Both sales contain stands of ancient trees, many 5-6' across, including Dougals Fir, Western Hemlock, and Pacific Silver Fir.

Logging personnel have attempted to prevent timber sale monitors from entering the area surrounding Peanuts in spite of no closures being on the road system leading in. Calls were placed to the Diamond Lake District bringing this to their attention and assurances were given the road system surrounding Peanuts is not closed and personnel employed by D.R. Johnson have no right to stop citizens from being in the area except the area within 1000 ft of active logging in progress.


16.06.2004 11:25
Greenpeace activists locked to three-ton container on logging road in Southern Oregon
The container on the road In a peaceful protest to challenge the assault on U.S. public lands by the Bush administration, Greenpeace activists put their bodies on the line today in the ancient forests of Southern Oregon.

A three-ton cargo container with two people locked to the inside and one attached to the outside, was placed between chainsaws and some 236 acres of old-growth forest at the SouKow timber sale outside of Glendale, Oregon.

BREAKING NEWS FROM TODAY'S LOCKDOWN can be found at  http://weblog.greenpeace.org/stopthesales/


16.06.2004 01:41
Rosie Sizer, Police commander known from downtown protests, moving to East Side precinct
Rosie Sizer, soon-to-be East Side Precinct commander According to a police officer who attended Tuesday night's Hosford-Abernathy neighborhood meeting to share crime stats and make nice with the locals (as part of his job -- this ain't volunteer work for him), Lt. Commander Rosie Sizer will soon switch jobs and become commander of the East Side precinct. Taking her place at the Central Precinct will be Dave Benson. According to "Portland's Deck of Infamy" -- a deck of playing cards created by local activists that features a Portland cop's face on each card along with their record of abuses -- Commander Benson (badge #17995, hire date 10/11/84) has supervised the riot-geared Rapid Response Team, which is well known for its violence against unarmed people on numerous occasions all around the city.

Sizer (badge #18161, hire date 1/3/85) is a familiar face to people who've attended protests downtown. She often acts friendly and will address activists by name. But many of us have seen her quickly switch, Jeckyl & Hyde like, and lose patience and order brutality. According to Portland Copwatch Sizer was given a written reprimand for failing to order an investigation into the beating of James Ladd by two off-duty Portland police officers in January, 2002. Sizer is also a defendant in the ongoing Marbet v. City of Portland case, which was filed after the notorious behavior of the police at the Aug. 22, 2002 Bush Protest in downtown Portland.

When a HAND board member light-heartedly suggested that "we ought to have more protests over here to make her feel at home", the officer chuckled and said, "Yeah, and you can break in the new guy downtown, too."

Deck of Infamy: [ PDF | 6/12 newswire post ]


16.06.2004 01:39
Starting a permaculture community garden on a contaminated landspace
Starting a permaculture community garden on a contaminated landspace involves phytoextraction, using plants like Brassica juncea to remove the heavy metals like lead from the soil..

Community urban permaculture gardens would help people become independent from the corporate petrochemically driven wage labor hamster wheel that keeps people working long hours just to buy petrochemically derived pesticide/herbicide sprayed/GMO food from agribusiness corporations..

Eating healthy food without pesticide/GMO is a human right for ALL PEOPLE on Earth. Making this a reality involves growing our own food in sustainable community gardens. Beginning a community garden in a public "waste space" of unused land is a challenge, especially when the soil of that land may be contaminated with some pollution..


16.06.2004 01:36
Tales From Middle America

from PART 1
Portland is my home, although I did not grow up there. This summer, I have opted to take a sabbatical in the midwest. I am visiting family and friends in the midwest and on the east coast, hopefully I can do more regular updates as it strikes me. Currently I am in Northwest Indiana, about thirty minutes outside of Chicago, where I grew up.

I arrived here two days ago, after a two day greyhound bus trip, that wasnt very much fun. On the first day I sat next to a conservative democrat that was interested int he zines I was reading. At the time he decided to strike up conversation, I was reading a journal from APLAN (Anarchist Prisoners Legal Aid Network). He wanted to know things such as "what is an anarchist", and "do you really beleive int hat stuff?" We got to talking... [ Read more... ]

from PART 2
I woke up around nine am and pattered around the house. Around noon I was called to come to wrok, at the shop. I went to the shop on a bicycle which was relatively nice, but bicycling out here is definately not the same as cycling in Portland. It kind of sucked, but at least I wasnt driving.

So I went to the shop to cut metal, because thats you do at the shop. After awhile someone showed up to pick up the metal. He talked to me a bit about a dirveby shooting that happened near the jobsite and said something like "You know, Im not racist, but these niggers need to do something else, I mean there were kids around and they should take that shit elsewhere." [ Read more... ]


15.06.2004 18:11
Portland Supports Justice for Janitors
It is a beautiful day today in Portland, and I just got back from the Justice for Janitors/SEIU rally and march that took place at noon. The turnout for the rally was good, although I certainly always wish that more people would represent. Jim Francesconi made a short statement at the beginning, which was good of him, even if he does have a face like a lizard. The march wound through downtown from Terry Schrunk Plaza, up to the park blocks above the Fox Tower, which was one of the two main targets of the day. Fox Tower, which is owned by big time Portland developer Bill Moyer, houses some of the most upscale retail and office space in the downtown area. Its retail cornerstones are a huge Banana Republic store, (you know how much that shit costs) and Regal Cinemas' Fox Tower theatre - an upscale art house multiplex that sells out shows every weekend. And yet this building does not want to give fair wages, and health benefits to their janitors. Keep that in mind next time you think about going to see a movie there, and if you're planning to shop at Banana Republic - DON'T, for lots of reasons...


15.06.2004 12:10
Mike D. needs our calls!
When Mike D. showed up for his court date last week, Judge Thorn decided to throw Mike in jail, stating that he hadn't kept in close enough contact with his lawyer. They are keeping Mike in the Clackamas County jail until his court date on 6/23/04. We need you to call his lawyer, Leonard Kovac at 503-659-5545, and ask for a release hearing for Mike.


Heroic ZooBombers Fight Evil Crime!
this sunday was the ZooBomb Century Ride, 100 miles in one day, on little bikes. During the race, a hardy band of 6 bombers noticed an older woman in distress. she had just been mugged, and the thief was running away. so the group of crime fighters, including a 6'2, 190lbs salmon on a mini-bike and a man in drag, chased down the would be mugger, surrounded him, and held him until the police arrived. the woman had her purse returned, and the heroes continued the race, completing 100 miles in one day on mini-bikes.

SKiDmark adds:
The way the century works is you take the MAX to the Zoo,bomb the hill, repeat til you rack up a hundred miles. It took me 14 hours. The guy who actually collared the purse snatcher was wearing a foam rubber full-body salmon costume. It happened where we turn from Burnside and go by PGE Park. Imagine the humiliation of being chased down by a Salmon on a minibike.Oh well, anybody snatching purses from old ladies should be ashamed of themselves.

related: [ previous pdx indy ZooBomb stories | ZooBomb website ]


14.06.2004 12:57
Harvest time means canning time!
picture for feature When we think of "harvest time", we often think of Autumn, but here in Cascadia we have fruit trees already bursting with deliciousness right now. Cherries are hitting their peak at the moment, and you can find them all around Portland. A friend of mine invited me to her house where her cherry tree is producing such an abundance of fruit that they don't know what to do with it all, and are begging people to come harvest. i spent a little over an hour there, and filled my bike basket with so many cherries that steering straight on the way home was a challenge! i must've come home with over twenty pounds. In a store, that many organic cherries would cost you between $90 and $140. Urban gleaning makes a lot of financial sense, plus it feels so good to harvest food yourself.

i got right to canning them when i got home. Here are some photos of the process. i'm hoping indymedia readers will be inspired to start preserving their own food, too. Preserving food will become increasingly important, as gas prices drive up food costs, and Peak Oil keeps those prices high. And in the winter, when you're jonesin' for some fruit, you can open up a jar of your very own. You might be surprised by how fresh smelling and tasting home-canned fruit is -- like it just came off the tree sometimes!

[ previous article by Johnny Tomatoseed: The joys of urban gardening: A porch garden in Portland produces delicious bounty ]


Democratic State Convention Summary: Rev. Dennis Delivers The Word... and the Convention delivers a wild-eyed far-left platform
Around 8:00am this morning I manage to drag myself out of bed, and somehow get enough coffee and advil down my throat to get out of the house and down to the MAX stop. Amazingly this proved to be worth the effort, because when the convention convened at 9:00am Dennis Kucinich took the stage - to the frenetic applause of an army of rabid Kuchies - and delivered a fiery speech that denounced the pacification of the right-wing, and extolled the virtues of leadership by principle...

After Dennis left, so did I, to go up the street for another 20oz cup of coffee. Walking out, I was joined by a number of other Kucinich supporters. For them it seems, a Democratic Party without Dennis Kucinich is a Democratic Party not worth being a part of, and I can't say that I really disagree with them. I am not a registered Democrat anyway.

The Democratic Party is a dinosaur - a gigantic old skeleton, which gets dragged out and dusted off every couple of years to be toured around the country. It does still draw crowds who come to gawk at the spectacle, but with each passing season they come out in fewer numbers, and those who come bring less of an interest and intensity than they did before.


13.06.2004 16:37
Reportback on Jeff "Free" Luers Solidarity Event in Eugene
The Event in Eugene held in solidarity with Jeff "Free" Luers was enjoyable and the speakers inspiring. Blackfire opened with a ancient healing hoop ceremony that had everone dazzled by the intricacy of the dance. Jeff's father came and said how proud he was of his son, making some of us wonder about where some of our blood relatives are at in their support of our beliefs...

An edited version of the film "Green With A Vengence" refreshed everone's memory about the spin that law enforcment and media put on Jeff's case, and fleshed out the ensuing copycat fire at the Romania car dealership, resulting in the burning of over 30 SUV's the week before Jeff's trial... supposedly done "in his name". I believe this is the fire that people are currently being subpoena'd to Grand Jury about in Eugene.

Kevin Price spoke with authority about the lies surrounding Mumia Abu Jamal's case, the fact that Mumia is not off death row at all, as the government has led the public to believe.


POLITICS 13.06.2004 09:15
Is the CIA engaging in a coup against the Bush regime?
This is an interesting article from Mike Ruppert which details the real reasons why the CIA scumball George Tenet resigned. It more broadly suggests that many of the various scandals involving the Bush regime that have been "discovered" by the US media recently are essentially part of an effort by the America establishment (and the CIA in particular) to diuscredit and remove the Bush Regime.

The only problem is that this Coup d'etat is most likely just a case of Regime Rotation whereby they replace the Bush Regime with a regime that is fundamentally no different in policy--except that it will have a more "benevolent" mask. I.E. Kerry.

What's also interesting about this article is that it reveals the fact that the true power in the USA lies with the American oligarchy, its controlled "free press," and various police state institutions like the CIA which are the puppetmasters behind the scenes pulling the strings and orchestrating public events and of course public opinion itself.

And you thought America was a democracy? Think again.


12.06.2004 14:54
Guadalajara, Mexico: Local Portlander Detained, Beaten
hey, I was recently in Guadalajara Mexico for the protests of the Summit between European and Latin American heads of state as they negotiated new trade deals. (You might have seen coverage on Indymedia or if you read Mexican dailys (La Jornada) there has been a lot of coverage).

In a nutshell, I was randomly picked up hours after the protests by one of the groups of police combing the city, beaten by roughly 15 Guadalajara riot police, gun-to-the-head threats of death, thrown through a hotel window, detained in the basement of the police station (along with dozens of others, many who are still illegally jalied in Guadalajara with invented charges), sent to migration holding center and eventually deported. (If you've followed this story, you know there were 8 foreigners deported... I am one of them).

At no point did I break any law in Mexico, and the list of human rights violations, illegalities, mistreatings, beatings, etc. I have experienced or seen is long... a big reason why they wanted me out of Mexico, and quick.

I have attached a (somewhat long, sorry) testimony...


12.06.2004 10:33
Police impede Portland Peaceful Response march
Yesterday's weekly Portland Peaceful Response Coalition (PPRC) march and rally centered on Ronald Reagan and the record of abuses and crimes undertaken during his administration. There were a number of props, including 3 coffins which were labeled in ways that reminded those who saw them of the many deaths caused by his policies...

Since this is Rose Festival week, the yearly presence of Naval vessels at the waterfront proved it's usual irresistable draw. The marchers, however, arrived at Waterfront Park only to find their progress impeded by a dozen or more Portland Police officers. The officers, led by a Lt. named O'Dea, claimed that there were "too many people down there" and the march would somehow endanger them.

For some marchers, this action was deja vu all over again. A couple of years ago, the PPD had done the same thing, resulting in a lost lawsuit for the City and the Rose Festival- an expensive lost lawsuit at that.


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