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From an official statement by the Cascadia Forest Alliance: "About a month before the Portland Joint Terrorism Task Force (PJTTF) is scheduled to expire (pending reauthorization by the Portland City Council) it has indicted four people for damaging three log trucks more than a year ago. Under pressure to produce 'results' to justify its continued existence, the suspicious timing of these indictments appears to be politically motivated. Police and PJTTF refused to reveal even general information about the evidence they are using to justify the indictments. They also refused to answer questions from the media about how much money has been spent on this investigation."
"[T]he PJTTF has amassed a consistent record of spying on and harrassing citizens engaged in legal, non-violent protests. Three of the four people indicted have been active with social justice issues through Portland State University. The fourth person indicted, Tre Arrow, has a history of very public nonviolent civil disobedience and ran against congressional representative Earl Blumenauer (D-Ore) on the Green Party ticket, receiving 15,000 votes."
"The PJTTF has made no meaningful arrests, or progress towards enhancing public safety during its existence. Its focus seems to be 'investigating' lawful nonviolent political groups and property crimes, not violent crimes against persons. This tactic appears to have little to do with protecting the public from terrorism, and points toward the PJTTF's true intent: Defending big timber, biotech, and multinational corporations from the protests of outraged citizens."
From the open publishing newswire: "The ongoing campaign against the replacement volume program and Allyn Ford came to Mr. Ford's hometown of Roseburg, Oregon. Activists from across the state converged Monday to express their disapproval of Mr. Ford's business practices on public lands. Over 50 people occuppied the entrance of the downtown branch of Umpqua Bank, led by a marching gamelan ensemble playing ancient rhythms at near deafening levels. The high spirited protest effectively closed the main entrance to the bank for over 2 hours before protesters paraded through the downtown core, chanting 'SAVE THE ANCIENT FOREST, BOYCOTT UMPQUA BANK!' and 'PUBLIC LANDS, NOT PRIVATE PROFIT!'
"Mr. Ford is the sole owner of Roseburg Forest Products and Scott Timber. RFP/Scott hold the contracts to dozens of sales on public land in the Pacific Northwest, many of which target mature and old-growth forests."
From the open publishing newswire: "Hello All. My name is Renay Oshop. I was visited on 8/20/02 by the FBI. They were very nice to me. I'm glad they came by. The purpose of their visit was to get details on a visit I received from my sweet friend Tre Arrow a few weeks ago. I'm writing here because it may be a good time in general for all of us to agree on what is the nature of things these days.
"For one thing, The FBI people today first said that they knew Tre had been here beause of a neighbor's tip. After my questioning, they then agreed that they know about my relationship with Tre via electronic monitoring of my communications. In their words, 'You know, there are no secrets'. I'm glad it's out in the open. So know you know too. As you should have figured out by now :)
"Fortunately, I try not to keep secrets anyway, and imperfect though I am, I try to ALWAYS act in accord with God, who sees everything. It is surprising nonetheless to realize that I suddenly have a real life equivalent (and one who may not be so magnanimous)hanging around, keeping track. Feels very millenial."
[ previous story (Aug. 14): Indymedia readers expose anti-activist bias in corporate media's coverage of FBI indictments/arrests ]
From the open publishing newswire: "With a war on Iraq seemingly imminent (some say already in progress), the Palestine Action Group appropriately focused on Iraq at last Saturday's forum. This was the ninth in a series of forums on Palestine and related topics, and, as usual, I got a lot out of it. Local activist Dan Handelman spoke about his visit to Iraq in May (and also in 1987) with the group Voices in the Wilderness."
"Dan warned that the new 'smart sanctions' adopted by the UN Security Council in May are a 'propaganda ploy by the US' and not an improvement on the old system. The UN Sanctions Committee routinely rejects items such as bicycle tires and bolts of fabric, identifying them as 'dual use items,' meaning they can be used for both civilian and military purposes. The Committee now uses a 300-page goods review list of 'dual use items' to approve or reject a proposal from Iraq. Dan said that the US changed the policy because 'people now know that the sanctions are killing people and that it's the US's fault.'"
Two events this week will provide opportunities for people to learn more about the state of civil liberties in Portland under the Joint Terrorism Task Force (which is up for renewal soon) and in the U.S. under 'Homeland Security' and the USA PATRIOT Act.
A Dialogue on the Office of Homeland Security
After 9/11: Forum on Civil Liberties and the Social Justice movement
SUMMARY OF CAUCUS REPORT FROM ATLANTA IMC: On Sunday, August 18th, members of the Congressional Black Caucus journeyed to Georgia's 4th Congressional District to aid Representative Cynthia McKinney's re-election bid.
Rep. Maxine Waters (CA-35th), Sheila Jackson-Lee, Barbara Lee, Bobby L. Rush, and Walter Fauntroy, one of the founding members of the Congressional Black Caucus, came because the stakes are high. If Rep. Cynthia McKinney wins her sixth term in the US House of Representatives and the Democratic Party regains the House majority, she will be the Chairperson of the International Operations and Human Rights subcommittee. Rep. McKinney would have the power to hold hearings, and run those hearings as the Chairperson. As such, Rep. Sheila Jackson-Lee says McKinney would be pivotal in Jackson-Lee's ability to make good on her vow not to send the sons and daughters of her community to fight the impending war with Iraq.
Corporate media is trying desperately to isolate Cynthia McKinney, saying she represents only one group of voters. To illustrate the obvious, the crowd was asked to look around the room at the diverse coalition assembled for the McKinney campaign, to work and fight for a world where all people are equal. In some ways, those assembled are all the same. In their desire to have a government that is accountable to them, that makes sense, that is fair. No wonder entrenched government operatives want her out.
Tuesday will indeed be a historic day in the campaign for equality, decency and dignity for all human beings.
[ Photos of Congressional Black Caucus at Rep. McKinney rally (1 of 2) | Photos of Congressional Black Caucus at Rep. McKinney rally (2 of 2) | "This is a 911 Situation!" | Youngster Raps for McKinney (20 sec.) ]
From the open publishing newswire: Last night, 8/17 about 6pm-7pm, Olson and another forest service law enforcement officers (FS LEOs) arrived [at the Solo tree-sit base camp] with 2 sherrifs Rhodes and Beahan, they told the people there that they were exceeding the 14 day law. They said that they had to have a new camp and couldn't use anything at that camp in there new camp, and if they took that stuff they would be stealing. Olson came and had a photo shot in camp. One FS LEO carried a pepper pellet gun (looks like a paintball gun). The officers, all male, used intimidation tactics and activists were afriad of being attacked by them. The sherrif was reciting things that activists supposedly have said at other action(s). Referring to tapes of said action(s), spoutting out names of people they want to bust, and trying to interigate the people at camp. They stole one copy of the Earth First! Journal, one shovel, and one activists expired ID, Rhodes claimed that and expired ID was illegal.
From the open publishing newswire: The first Rock Against Racism in many years will happen again this Saturday, August 24th at P.C.C. Cascade, located at 705 N. Killingsworth. Rock Against Racism is a musical/spoken word/educational event that was created in response to the white supremacist National Alliance's call for all white supremacist organizations to march on the Israeli embassy in Washington D.C. on the very same day. The event wislso geared towards raising awareness of the rising tide of white supremacist activity in the Portland area, as well as nationwide.
[ Some previous stories about Volksfront and racism on portland indymedia: Volksfront: New and Improved, or Stale Cookies?... (7/12/02) | VF Goes Underground (7/16/02) | Indymedia Antiracist Response (12/22/01) | keyword search for "Volksfront" on portland indymedia ]
From the open publishing newswire: "Around 12pm 8/17/02, approximately 10 people gathered at the KBOO book and record sale in southeast portland to boycott Taco Bell. Unsuprisingly the liberal bourgeois crowd was largely complacent, and more interested in shopping than what the protestors were suggesting. At around 12:25ish we marched down to the [Back to Back] Cafe, and picked up some people there (they were more easily recruited). Around 20 were there at the peak of the boycott. Actually I think the largest number of people who joined us, who were not previously informed of the event, were latino passerbys. I thought it was really exciting to have random people off the street, most likely working class, get active in a moments notice. It was just another example, to me, of the middle and educated classes complacency, and the strength of the working class."
FROM THE NEWSWIRE: "I live in Atlanta, and this weekend I'm volunteering as much time as I can to the Cynthia McKinney for Congress campaign. The key task for the Cynthia McKinney for Congress campaign right now is to get in contact with these supporters and let them know that here in the middle of the dog days of August, Cynthia McKinney is engaged for the fight of her political life. The good news is that Cynthia McKinney has hundreds of volunteers showing up at her campaign headquarters with energy and enthusiasm.
"Volunteers are coming into this campaign from all across the country. I discovered that I had some value to the campaign just because I've lived in Atlanta for a long time, and thus I could get into a van and they'd have someone who knows the area and help them not to get lost. The van I was in had volunteers from Chicago, Louisiana and Memphis..."
[ Barbara Lee Rally | Headquarters | McKinney: We Come For Peace | No Ordinary Election (video) | Cynthia McKinney: War, Peace, and Barbara Lee @ Hip Hop Power Shop (video) | Barbara Lee Speaks Up for McKinney (video) | McKinney on Those Who Fear the Rainbow (video)]
Cynthia McKinney volunteer rally draws full house as she battles Democrats and Republicans to retain her office
On Friday evening, August 16th, the Cynthia McKinney for Congress campaign held a rally for volunteers. As an Atlanta volunteer listened, it became clear where the campaign fit into the Atlanta political scene. Speakers tied the Cynthia McKinney campaign to their own struggles dating back to Martin Luther King, Jr and the struggles to wrest power in Atlanta away from the white, business-based power structure that controlled Atlanta until the early 1970's. This is in stark contrast to Cynthia McKinney's opponent, who is backed by "bomb the hell out of them" Senator Zell Miller, leader of the Democratic Party establishment in Georgia.
Silencing those represented by Cynthia McKinney is a bi-partisan effort. Georgia's "open primary" process allows Georgia Republicans to cross over into the Democratic Primary and vote to eliminate Cynthia McKinney from the Congressional race. They're being urged by the Establishment and their Media to do so.
So the battle lines in the 4th Congressional District seem to be clearly drawn. Watching Cynthia McKinney laugh and dance and fire up the crowd, it almost looks like she's enjoying the fight. [ Friday Rally ]
You can donate online at http://www.cynthia2002.com/donate_online.htm
Or send a check or money order to
2600 Rainbow Way
Decatur, Georgia 30034
For more information, call (404) 243-5574
[ Nader Praises McKinney's Support of Consumers | Dekalb County Green Party Supports Cynthia McKinney | McKinney Campaign Down to Wire - Aug 20 Primary May Go To Well Funded Machine | Nader urges support for McKinney ]
From the open publishing newswire: "Friday's peace rally and march in downtown Portland was the most spirited and lively I've seen since I moved back to town in late June. Led by a woman with a bass drum that was stamped with 'Beat Back Bush's War' and another woman who led the chants, the assembled crowd made a tremendous noise for their small numbers (about three dozen) and captured a lot of attention as they marched through downtown. I was totally caught up in the positive, vibrating energy of it. It was really inspiring. And definitely an instance when Emma Goldwoman's idea that men should 'step aside' and let women lead had fruitful results."
"Besides the bass drum, two men carried snares too and this percussion combo is what made the difference this week, during an event that has often been quieter and more staid in my experience. Some of us walked in the street part of the time. Add a couple more drums and a couple dozen more people and we could just take the streets outright next time."
Nearly two years ago, Samantha Buck of Astoria, Oregon, bought a small coffee shop and named it Sam Buck's -- after herself. A year later, StarbucksĀ® opened a store inside Fred Meyers, five miles away, and served Samantha with a cease and desist order demanding that she stop using her own name on her store because they claimed it was causing confusion for StarbucksĀ® customers. Samantha refused.
On Friday, August 16, Portlanders stood in solidarity with Samantha Buck and demonstrated outside the Starbucks in Pioneer Courthouse Square: "Samantha Buck, and her family came from Astoria for the Friday morning August 16th protest at Pioneer Square Starbucks. From 7am to 9am, some 15 people handed out flyers, talked to people about the issue, and asked them to sign petitions... This issue is an easy sell. Over 1000 flyers were handed out, and the great majority of the people who took them, both read them, and sympathised with Sam. Many people were outraged by the bullying strongarm tactics of Starbucks as they try to put a small business owner out of business."
Another post to the open publishing newswire urges people to call and write Starbucks and the Portland lawyers they hired to go after Samantha. This post includes emails, phone numbers, and -- borrowing a technique from animal rights activists -- a "black fax" to send.
[ Astoria Coffee War | Sam Buck has been served a summons by Starbucks | Starbucks protest this Friday to support Astoria's Samantha Buck | Tell STARBUCKS and their PORTLAND LAWYERS to leave Samantha Buck alone!! ]
From the newswire: "Mayor Vera Katz called a press conference this morning (8-16-02) to announce new enforcement guidelines for the cities existing obstructions as nuisances law. (Please see enclosed) The new guidelines will effectively allow enforcement of the law against anyone sitting or standing on a public sidewalk.
"When the legislative process to enact a "sit-lie-stand" ordinance began last winter, the City responded to pressure against the law by to opening the process up to community involvement. The mayors press conference today sidestepped that process. Present at the conference were the Portland Police Bureau, The Portland Business Alliance, The District Attorney and The City Attorney. Excluded were the ACLU, Oregon Law Center, Metropolitan Public Defenders Office and crossroads, a people's organization allied with Sisters Of The Road Cafe Inc.
Safeway has been a big proponent of GM foods since they came on the market. And though over 80% of shoppers are concerned about eating food that contains genetically modified organisms (GMOs), Safeway had disregarded these concerns, scoffing at the notion that customers might not want to eat these untested, unlabeled and unwanted 'frankenstein foods'.
Join NW RAGE, GEFreeLA, Greenpeace, the Organic Consumers Association and others as they continue their national campaign to get Safeway to remove genetically engineered ingredients from all its store brand products. Their next action is Saturday, August 17, 11am. It will be at the Safeway on 82nd Ave and E. Burnside Street.
Boycott The Bell
This Saturday, August 17, from 12:30-2:00pm join local labor, student, farmworker, social justice, and community activists at their bi-monthly picket of Taco Bell. The picket will be at the Taco Bell at Grand and E. Burnside. Organizers recommend you bring your voice, bring your chihuahua, and come ready to stand up for justice in the fields.
The bi-monthly pickets are part of a nationwide campaign to support farm workers. Tomato workers in South Florida work for the Six L's corporation which supplies most of the tomatoes used by the chain of pseudo Mexican restaurants (Taco Bell). Workers at Six L's haven't had a raise in the piece rate they work under since 1978. To earn $50 they must pick and carry two tons of tomatoes in a day.
From a message received by the Earth Liberation Front Press Office and reposted to the open publishing newswire: "Hundreds of metallic and non-metallic spikes have been placed in units 28 and 29 of the Kirk Timber Sale in the Gifford Pinchot National Forest. The spikes were placed at all levels of the trees. Most trees have both metallic and non-metallic spikes. The Douglas Fir, Hemlock, Cedar, and Yew trees are an average of 300 years old. The 16 acre grove is a refuge of Cascadian native forest and is adjacent to the Dark Divide Roadless area. It is home to Elk, Owl, and Bear among other wild beings. Logging this grove would require rebuilding a road and replacing a bridge over a major creek.
"The Kirk Timber Sale is one of many sales currently proposed in the Gifford Pinchot National Forest... This action seeks to keep these old growth trees from ever being cut. It is not intended to put any timberworkers at risk. This message is being sent out before any trees are felled."
EXCELLENT NEWSWIRE REPORT ON TODAY'S GARDEN DEMO! "The Ron Mandella Community Garden in Sacramento, the city's oldest community garden, is being threatened by commercial 'development'. With the help of city and state money -- $4.5 million altogether -- a partnership of private companies intend to bulldoze the park and build high-priced condominiums.
"The destruction of small, human-scaled, beautiful places in U.S. cities for profit is nothing new of course; entire neighborhoods have have been wiped out for hospital expansion, churches, and government complexes, from coast-to-coast, but such policies began to fall into disfavor about twenty years ago as people rose up to protect their history, their businesses, and their homes. Gentrification -- 'fixing up' old neighborhoods rather than levelling them -- has certainly also taken its toll on poor people and people of color, but it too has been resisted by popular movements, and local governments have in many cases been forced to pay attention to those who *live* in places, not just those who want to make money from them.
"But the battles to save our cities for ourselves is still definitely pitched, and the case of the Ron Mandella Community Garden in Sacramento is a hot one..."
[ Photos from the protest | Save the Ron Mandella Community Garden ]
Cynthia McKinney has been one of the few voices of reason in Congress. In addition to calling for an end to sanctions against Iraq and for protection of old growth forests, she has called out loud and clear for real, thorough investigations into the 9-11 attacks. You can count on one hand politicians courageous enough to question the wholesale shredding of our civil rights and creation of a police state. Cynthia McKinney is consistently in that handful.
The Democratic primary in Georgia is August 20th. Her opponent is backed by a lot of money and wholly predictable smear campaigns. Among the allegations is the tired refrain "She received campaign contributions from terrorist organizations." What a splendid irony. If that's a disqualifier for political office, Resident Bush should be on the next wagon out of the Whitehouse, with his connections to the Bin Ladens.
We need to preserve any shred of common sense left in Congress. Cynthia McKinney can still win. A last minute cash infusion could buy the media necessary to prevent another bought and paid for politician from replacing a real public servant. She needs and deserves the support of everyone who complains about the lack of principled backbone in politics.
You can donate online at http://www.cynthia2002.com/donate_online.htm
Or send a check or money order to
2600 Rainbow Way
Decatur, Georgia 30034
For more information, call (404) 243-5574
[ Full story ]
[ Nader Praises McKinney's Support of Consumers | Dekalb County Green Party Supports Cynthia McKinney ]
Corporate media outlets reported on Tuesday that four Portland activists had been indicted by the Oregon FBI's Joint Terrorism Task Force for the June 2001 arson of logging equipment belonging to Schoppert Logging of Eagle Creek, Oregon. Three of the four people have been arrested and released until trial but the fourth, Tre Arrow, is so far still free. Stories from local television station KGW, the Associated Press, and the Oregonian about the indictments and arrest were posted to the portland indymedia open publishing newswire, and trusty media critics were quick to pounce on the misleading vocabulary, glaring ommissions, and clear anti-activist bias in the coverage. Here is what a few of them had to say:
"Gia" advises: "[A]s this story spins through the mainstream media we must correct misinformation and hold them acountable for what they say and print, seemingly piddly details become immeasurably important when we are talking about justice and the life of a dedicated pacifist."
"xxx" says: "It is apparent that by constantly referring to this as the 'Eagle Creek incident' a deliberate form of misinformation is spewed by mainstream media that psychologically links the burning of the log trucks to CFA [Cascadia Forest Alliance] in the public mind (CFA = Eagle Creek = Tre), thus, guilt by association."
Red Emma points out the "VERY suspicious timing of these arrests, coming right before the PJTTF is up for renewal and is under pressure to produce 'results'."
Patrick Norton writes: "I am very skeptical about any law enforcement assertion, as so often they are outright lies. We need to speak out about the FBI's history of politically motivated prosecutions in order to counter the FBI propaganda. I have always been suspicious of the timing of the arsons, just when civil disobedience and pressure on elected officials was having some effect. It seemed to be the work of provocatuers, and it still seems that way to me."
There is no doubt that corporate junk info outlets such as the Oregonian demonize political activists. As an interactive tool with which anyone can publish, Indymedia empowers people to expose the lies and create a new information network to replace the broken one.
[ Read more critiques on each of these stories: Eagle Creek Arson Arrests (KGW) | AP story on Eagle arson arrests | bOregonian article on FBI indictments of local activists ]
From the open publishing newswire: "We the Executive Board of ILWU Local 5 stand in solidarity with our union sisters and brothers. We champion the right to the collective bargaining process, the right to picket and strike, the right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness, and, ultimately, the right to be free from the economic terrorism of the capitalist ruling class...
"While we support all struggles against the tyranny of government and bureaucracy, of most immediate and crucial concern for us, are the recent developments on the longshore. The Bush Regime has indicated that they are looking at four options: 1) Invoking the Taft-Hartley Act; 2) Running the ports with Navy personnel; 3) Placing the docks under the Railroad Labor Act and 4) Breaking up the coast wide contract. Each one of these threats against the ILWU is a direct attack on the power each and every worker. We must not allow this to happen..."
"We call upon all workers of the Americas to unite against this attack on the basic rights of our livelihoods and against all the oppressions and tyrannies of the Bush Regime. We support the community organizing efforts to stage a demonstration against the Bush Regime on his visit to Portland, Oregon on August 22nd, 2002 and will mobilize the Labor Community to the best of our ability to ensure the event is a success."
To keep up to date on the latest information about the upcoming protest against the Bush Regime on August 22, check in with portland.indymedia.org/protestbush.
Listen to a presentation given on August 13 in Portland by Professor Albert Bartlett. He is a nationally known speaker and has published a large number of articles on the mathmatics of exponential growth, energy usage, fossil fuel reserve estimates, and the effects of population growth on the future of humanity.
Quoted from an article posted to the newswire: "Today we hear many people talking about "Sustainability," as though we can accomodate continued population growth with something vague and ill-defined that is called "sustainable development." The thought seems to be that there is no need to worry about population: all we need to do is to make minor modifications of our way of life, (conserve, recycle, etc.) and this will suffice to make our society "sustainable." Please remember the First Law of Sustainability:
"Population growth and / or growth in the rates of consumption of resources cannot be sustained.
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