Friday, January 14, 2011

Anarchists Against the Wall (in Palestine)!

Abrasha Blum gave a talk about 'Anarchists Against the Wall'. AAtW is a Israeli and Palestinian group which opposes the state run border control and sanctions- which have depleted all resources from the Palestinians living in the Gaza Strip and the West bank. With the most densely populated part of the world in those regions and surrounded on all sides by walls settlements and tyrannical military checkpoints. Palestine is surrounded and completely dependent on Israel, who controls who and what enters and exits Palestine. SO the people are without construction materials, sufficient medical supplies and other necessities of life.

The AAtW Presentation, by an Istaeli Jew, who is a veteran, the presentation was about daily life and provides video evidence about the harsh reality of the situation. The group opposes the walls, with a nonviolent spirit and incredible diligence, in face of arrest, brutality, intimidation, harassment of families and even murder. The examples are well documented and presents the case that Americans need to stop funding Israel's military campaign, or the oppression at every level will continue. AAtW continues to use nonviolence and is continually beaten and abused. Blum said "The wall was theoretically created to end Palestinian attacks, but if that were really the intent of the wall, it would have been build on the Israeli side, taking Israeli land. It is clear that this is an excuse to take land and create a divide, between communities as it separates friends and children in schools". The talk was as inspirational as it was compassionate.

One key organizer Ben Jones said "Justice before Peace, you can't have one with out the other. As an Israeli he knows that his presence could be oppressive, so he has to work to eliminate oppression, as part of a joint struggle"

One audience member "I liked that he was balanced and he wasn't condoning any behavior, but he did condemn the Israeli Apartheid, made the distinction that anti-apartheid is not anti-Jew. He [the speaker] was very well spoken".

The audience did ask questions about gender oppression and opportunities to make a realistic change for palestinians.

It is worthy to mention that the speaker was so humble that he even felt uncomfortable being applauded.

How long will the cries for freedom go unanswered?

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Got news?

The Student Insurgent is a newspaper and information publishing house (that means we make a paper, but also 'zines, news bulletins and special edition reprints). We print radical news, art, ideological commentary, comics, opinions, informative updates and generally try to give a voice to the oppressed. We don't assign stories, we want people like you to fulfill their potential by researching what you want and writing stories on subjects you actually care about! Part of our goal is to break down the barriers of oppression and make a space of empowerment.

Generally we call for a restructuring of the world along more egalitarian lines.

If you think you can contribute, we welcome all stories- feel free to email us any of the above categories, news updates especially and we will try to publish what we can. There is no limit on what you can send in (or how much), but we reserve the right to make make editorial decisions. send them to:

studentinsurgent@gmail.com with 'submissions' in the title

OR

If you're in Eugene, come to a meeting:

on Monday at 6:15pm, in the Survival Center- Erb Memorial Union (EMU Suite#1).



We are NOT a platform for misogynists, racists, fascists, gender oppressive, sex negative, or any other kind of bigots. So don't send that here, we won't print it, because language can be oppressive and create reifying bigotry. We refuse to be part of this cycle, the cultural promulgation of bigotry is not our thing.

Your SI

Sea Shepherd intercepts whaling fleet in Southern Ocean

Sea Shepherd, is a direct action marine wildlife defense organization. They put their lives on the line against illegal operations, which no international agency will oversee. This groups is taking an ethical stand for the freedom of natural areas and that is a stand for all of our freedom. They are willing to take their beliefs far enough to even sink criminal vessels who will not halt their murderous operation. They have opposed sprawler nets, that can span over a mile causing vast overfishing, they opposed whaling operations and other practices that are devastating to animals. Since we too are animals sharing this earth, this is a human mission as well.

The first clashes have occurred between Sea Shepherd volunteer activists and Japanese whalers in the Southern Ocean whale sanctuary bordering the Antarctic continent. Dodging and dancing perilously through the ice flows (Watch video), Sea Shepherd activists in small inflatable zodiacs and their larger three vessels harassed the three Japanese harpoon vessels while in pursuit of the Nisshin Maru whaling factory ship in the first days of 2011. For the first time in seven years of campaigning in the southern ocean Sea Shepherd have been able to locate the whaling fleet before whaling was able to begin.

The legality of whaling in the Southern Ocean Whale Sanctuary is being challenged by the Australian Government in a case filed in July 2010 (PDF) before the International Court of Justice, although success is by no means certain. Whaling was found to be illegal under Australian law in a 2008 Federal court ruling. Whaling by Japan is done through a scientific research loophole under the International Whaling Commission (IWC) convention. The whale meat is commercially sold (or stockpiled) in Japan. Under the IWC there is an international moratorium on commercial whaling since 1985.

Cables released by wikileaks on January 1st, 2011 reveal Japan was pressuring the US Government to remove Sea Shepherd's US tax exemption status as a sweetener to negotiating a compromise deal in the International Whaling Commission during 2010 that would have reduced whale quotas but legitimized commercial whaling. Australia remained opposed to the deal, although the cables indicate Australia may have considered conditional commercial whaling outside the Southern Ocean whale sanctuary.

Australia Indymedia | San Fransisco Bay Area Indymedia | Sea Shepherd Conservation Society

The Fisheries Agency of Japan (FAJ) has recently admitted that their officials have received free whale meat from the company contracted to perform the whaling. The two Japanese Greenpeace activists who attempted to highlight this corruption and embezzlement have been vindicated, according to Greenpeace.

This year, like previous years, Japan self issued a scientific permit for a four-ship fleet to slaughter up to 935 minke whales and 50 fin whales this summer. Despite the ramming and loss of the Sea Shepherd Ady Gil last year, the campaign against whaling cut the kill number in half to just 507 whales. "Of the fifty humpback whales that were targeted, they did not take a single one. Of the fifty fin whales that were targeted, they managed to kill only one. Of the 935 targeted Minke whales, they killed 506. In total, the illegal Japanese whalers murdered 507 whales. Sea Shepherd successfully saved 528 whales- our biggest impact on the whale quota to date." said a Sea Shepherd media release in April 2010.

Through Direct action Sea Shepherd is making Japanese whaling in the southern Ocean commercially unprofitable. Sea Shepherd estimates about 700 whales need to be slaughtered for the whaling industry to break even after selling the whale meat. According to the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) during the 2008-09 season, the Japanese whaling industry needed US$12 million in taxpayer money subsidies just to break even. Overall, Japanese subsidies for whaling amount to US$164 million since 1988. The Norwegian Government also subsidises a local whaling industry in the North Atlantic.

According to the International Environmental Law Project (IELP) the IWC has asked its members that conduct research whaling programs to demonstrate that the research provides critical information, that the research is needed for whale management purposes, and that non-lethal research techniques are not able to provide the same information. The IWC has issued at least 19 resolutions criticizing Japan for failing to meet these conditions and asking it to stop issuing permits.

Paul Watson, the founder of Sea Shepherd Conservation society, has maintained that whaling is illegal under several international agreements and treaties. He maintains "It is not illegal to interfere on the high seas against their illegal whaling activities. In fact, we are legally authorized to do so in accordance with the U.N. World Charter for Nature."

Captain Paul Watson outlined the legal arguments against whaling in 2005 saying:

"It is Japan that is violating international conservation law. The following list summarizes their violations:

1. The Japanese are whaling in violation of the International Whaling Commission's global moratorium on commercial whaling. The IWC scientific committee does not recognize this bogus research that the Japanese are using as an excuse.
2. The Japanese are killing whales in the Southern Ocean Sanctuary for whales.
3. The Japanese are killing whales unlawfully in the Australian Antarctic Territory
4. The Japanese are targeting fin whales this year and humpback whales next year. These are endangered species and thus this is a violation of CITES, the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora.
5. The Japanese are in violation of IWC regulation 19. (a) The IWC regulations in the Schedule to the Convention forbid the use of factory ships to process any protected stock: 19. (a) It is forbidden to use a factory ship or a land station for the purpose of treating any whales which are classified as Protection Stocks in paragraph 10. Paragraph 10(c) provides a definition of Protection Stocks and states that Protection Stocks are listed in the Tables of the Schedule. Table 1 lists all the baleen whales, including minke, fin and humpback whales and states that all of them are Protection Stocks.
6. In addition the IWC regulations specifically ban the use of factory ships to process any whales except minke whales: Paragraph 10(d) provides: (d) Notwithstanding the other provisions of paragraph 10 there shall be a moratorium on the taking, killing or treating of whales, except minke whales, by factory ships or whale catchers attached to factory ships. This moratorium applies to sperm whales, killer whales and baleen whales, except minke whales.

From US Indy medi: http://www.indymedia.org/en/2011/01/944591.shtml

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Prez says 'talk to the hand'

University of Oregon President LaRiv. came to speak as the Faculty senate, in the Jaqua (Jock) center. The meeting was held in a classroom (in fact, the only public classroom), in the one public floor of the Jaqua center. The talk was about the Riverfront Research development or 'how to destroy natural riparian zones'.

LaRiv answered two questions, the first was about using an old plan, he says 'it's not old, we made, you know, some revisions'.

The second question was about the costs and contract, to which he replied 'I am not like, a lawyer or anything, but, you should talk to the state board of higher education'.

Then he was prompted by Senate president Nathan Tublitz, to actually answer the questions."I believe thsoe questions have already been answered", this was followed by gasps, chuckles and loud coughs, "I don't mean to be facious but...", said LaRiv.

The mouthpiece of the university... doesn't care and thinks all questions have already ben answered. Great, way to be worthless.

PS: You're not a pirvate school and you are still owned by the public... that means public meetings and accountability.

PPS: Nobody wants this, the dicision should be a sinch, No more waterfront development.

PPPS: You dont have to just build buildings to grow and improve education, try correcting the students of Color imbalance and ofering quality classes, eh?

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Stop 5000 Acre Public Lands Give Away

Governor Kitzhaber and Secretary of State Kate Brown will decide at a February 8th 2011 State Land Board Meeting on whether to move forward on auctioning off 4,920 acres of Common School Fund (CSF) Land in Josephine and Jackson counties. Most of these parcels if sold would likely be bought by local timber industry interests and subsequently clearcut. In 2010 this has been the case for sales and exchanges of CSF lands in western Oregon.

Five of these parcels are square mile sections (640 acres).
Two Sections are in the Illinois Valley (Woodcock Creek, Althouse Creek) and one Section is near the Rogue River and Onion Mountain Lookout. One Section is in the headwaters of the Applegate River (Slick Rock Creek) approximately 12 miles due south of Williams. Some parcels are in the East Fork Applegate Drainage. The fifth square mile parcel is located at the headwaters of Evans Creek and Cow Creek east of Glendale. The remaining 2,000 acres are 40- 340 acre parcels. (For Legal Locations go to: http://www.oregon.gov/DSL/LW/land_sales.shtml )

All of these parcels still contain some mature and/or old growth forests although DSL staff is attempting to deny it.

In Lane County 300-500 year old trees have been clear-cut from these "sold" public lands that were acquired by a former Oregon Board of Forestry member. The Oregon BOF makes recommendations and approves the disposal of the CSF lands. This current round of "disposal" sales of State public land has already occurred throughout most western Oregon counties.
See articles from the Oregonian December 2010 here.
link to www.oregonlive.com

link to www.oregonlive.com

We are urging folks who want to stop this public land from being sold off to local timber interests, clear-cut, and poisoned to write Governor Kitzhaber and Secretary of State Kate Brown who will decide the fate of these lands on February 8th 2011. Urge them to implement a moratorium on further Common School Fund land sales, initiate an independent investigation of whether laws were followed in earlier sales, if the "disposal" moves forward that the Forest Service and BLM be given priority in the acquisition of these lands, and demand the Governor mandate the adoption Code of Ethics rules for the Oregon Board of Forestry (BOF) to eliminate this sort of corruption.

Other things you could do to stop this: visit and photo-document these lands (send the most revealing photos to State Lands Board officials and use them for outreach purposes) and if at all possible write letters to the editor to educate your neighbors.

Together we can stop this corrupt travesty from moving forward and happening again.

Governor Kitzhaber
RE: School Fund Land Sale
160 State Capitol
900 Court Street
Salem, OR 97301-4047

Kate Brown
RE: School Fund Land Sale
Oregon Secretary of State
136 State Capitol
Salem, OR 97301

Background

Common School Fund Asset Management Plan (2006-2016) - the second plan of its nature, designed in DSL's words, to 'dispose of' 12,000 acres of undesirable lands (stated too costly to manage) across Oregon, in the effort of acquiring assets (not necessarily lands) that might be valuable in the future (they admit this depends on the economy).

CSF lands - Common School Fund lands, 100% of the proceeds from the logging and/or sale allegedly goes back into the fund. State Land Board (SLB) has ultimate authority. ODF manages on the ground, and DSL pays ODF for this service. The State has slowly sold off or transfered ownership to other agencies of CSF lands since first acquiring them in the late 1800's, now more rapidly.

GLOSSARY

SLB - State Land Board; includes Governor, Secretary of State, State Treasurer; works with DSL and BOF; has ultimate authority over Common School Fund land (mostly forest).

DSL - Department of State Lands; Advises the SLB on the condition of such lands and whether state land should be sold, exchanged or transferred to other entities.

BOF - Oregon Board of Forestry makes management decisions related to State and private forestland; members appointed by Governor, approved by State legislature; usually contains several timber company owners or relatives of timber owners. They recommend and approve parcels to be "disposed" of. Jennifer Philippi of Rough & Ready Lumber currently sits on the BOF.

ODF - Oregon Department of Forestry; manages forested State land and performs a security role for private timber companies.

ECONOMICS
This plan was implemented just as the market for timber started to decline post 2006. There seems to be a burst of sales recently when the market is at bottom, meaning that the CSF gets less money for schools, and timber companies get a great deal, plus exporting at a higher price than appraised at.

One can go here to quickly lookup Locations and preliminary appraisals: http://www.oregon.gov/DSL/LW/land_sales.shtml

THE PROCESS
DSL consults ODF about which parcels it thinks should be exchanged. The list goes up the DSL chain of command to the Director, who then proposes a list to the State Land Board. At one meeting, the State Land Board considers exchanges, apparently in batches, sometimes by County by County. At a later meeting, the SLB decides on these exchanges.

Sometimes, and the details are not clear, the BOF has a decision making role. This is for parcels that it oversees - it does not oversee the management of all CSF parcels. It is unknown how it was determined which parcels the BOF would oversee. We suspect the lack of clarity on which parcels the BOF manages having to do with ease of giving the industry old growth to export.

If the BOF oversees a parcel, then it has to decide in favor of its exchange, then the SLB makes the final decision. In the transaction record in the land database for our focus parcels, we see a transfer between BOF and SLB before a sale or trade.

The SLB is supposed to notify the County in which the parcels exist of its decision, and then the County has x number of days to appeal. Do CSF exchanges fall under the Administrative Procedures law or is there something specific for them? We don't know. A public hearing is allowed under law. But, according to DSL, it's press releases that give just the location and sale price and auction deadline are deemed adequate. DSL says it acquired "extensive" public input on its Asset Management Plan and that public involvement regarding individual parcels is unnecessary.

Note: There are non-CSF lands that BOF & ODF manage, without the extra authority of SLB. Different laws govern CSF lands and other State lands. The Elliott State Forest and Tillamook-Clatsop State Forests have different management regimes. ~~~~~

Please Contact us if you have new information, or have further inquiries.

Shannon Wilson (541-746-3371) ( tsuga@efn.org)
Samantha Chirillo

Why Money?

When people talk about 'THINGS', objects, ideas, or even time, these are measured in terms of value in money. All that is exists now has a theoretical value placed upon it, from the water and food we drink to the star registry. One man even offered to sell his soul for money(1). At the same time money is used, it is constantly changing value. All things are for sale, but did you ever stop to consider why money exists at all, the circumstances that created it and shape this amorphous thing which all else is relative to, how did money come to exist?

An economist will tell you money is part of a natural progression of economic history, that it allows an individual to divide the relative value of an object into an abstract thing- money. But what IS money? money in a practical sense should be easily divisible and portable, but also must be able to represent the value of all things and be trusted. But this hasn't always been so, money as we think of it is a modern construct is not just some utilitarian object of service- like a shell used as a medium of proportional object division.

Has money always existed? NO! Money is a modern concept, units of exchange are present only with the rise of urban settings and following the crop/animal domestication. The use of exchange currency was not necessary even in many early periods, as one knew one's neighbors and could establish trust and debt enough to compensate for any differences in the value of barter. The barter system also allowed for individuals to exchange at the value they felt the product of labor was worth. The Spartan society of ancient Greece was so adamant of refusing currency that they abolished all currency within the city-state of Sparta. Local Greek kings would print their faces on the money and as the kings changed, so did the money, Spartans rejected this as absurd and corrupting way to live (some soldiers did however, keep treasures and spoils in banks on the borders of Sparta).

Let's be honest, modern money has taken on a value all its own, an object to be desired and hoarded. Sometimes if one has enough of it, it becomes an investment with which to earn more money. In fact it is so abstract from its purpose of being a unit of division that it is thought of as a object in its own right. How money transitioned into this object of inherent value is unclear, but it may have some roots in the transition to modern banking. The advent of banks allowed for 'book keeping' which led the sketchy practices of interest, investments and loans. The modern banks and State economies, now electronic, can create artificial money without ever needing to print a paper or mint a coin. The large abstraction of millions, billions and trillions creates a world without limits, where money is infinite and commanding.

This abstract money, the modern money that we think of is problematic in it's very nature for two reasons.
~The first problem is that unlike any other object it has no relative cap- for instance; if you have one thousand couches, dogs, beds, etc, you have no conceivable need for any more. In the case of money there is no limit to its capacity, one person could have one thousand of any currency, ten thousand currency, one million, one billion or one trillion and still desire more- this is the only object that inspires an infinite level of greed! There is no possible end to the level of greed, because an electronic bank can simply add more zeros. Nothing in the universe, save the universe itself has ever been truly infinite, therefore the unending greed for this money will know no limits to the exploitation and suffering created to attain this money. Unlike Adam Smith's prediction there will not be any division of wealth as there is a division of labor, instead there will be just great hills of money and great poverty. Without the ability to constrain money, there can be no hope of constraining the greed that will follow the pursuit of it.

~The second problem related to the use of money is its usage- that money does not unite communities, it destroys them. Money requires that you are dependent on it, needing it for every necessity- because someone can be paid to do what you could do for yourself. This process disempowers every individual who uses money. From the peanut butter we buy for the sandwhiches, to the dyes in our clothes, all aspects of life an living will become commercialized. This effect will distance the places of production from consumption, from the first to the third world. From the seen to the unseen. The use of money will spread the effects of worst elements to farther regions. Wars for instance, will not be fought will soldiers you know, but with mercenaries from abstract regions- paid to kill and to die. This removal is observable in every shut factory door, in the closure of any effective cooperative enterprise. That is to say we are to be displaced from the production and the customer, we are be so separate that we cannot relate to the person on the other end, they are just a part of the monetary exchange- as much as a machine or plant. This process has terrible social effects, making humans disconnected, from one another.

The use of money will not set us free. In fact it will crush us. The blows need not be physical, but a simple denial of work. Even if you can find work, your work will be as a part of a machine. There will be no escape. As in China, even if you try to jump from the system and die, they will catch you and put you back to work. This sounds deeply hopeless, it is not. But the resistance must mount quickly. The first step is to break the latter then the former problems of money, in that order. We must know the people around us, recognize the suffering and dissatisfaction, collectivize and reject money over time from our communities, in favor of local production in the name of our needs. We cannot function in any meaningful way under this oppressive system, for the few granted passage into the upper echelons of society, you must ask what is the cost of your status, who is suffering to get you there. All the workers in the first and third world must recognize that we are part of a system oppressing us or part of a system that is causing that oppression. We must reject this system. Not all at once, but with a plan that dislodges these system of oppression.

Perhaps we will be attacked and money will be willed as a product to weigh upon all our heads. But I ask which is worse, the weight of money on your head or the price of blood on your hands? Which is more painful, the hard work of making your own shoes and farming fields or being a participant in the decay of our world and the destruction of our sense of self?

Why money? There is no good reason.

1) http://www.digitaljournal.com/article/247454

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Take action now to Stop the Jordan Cove LNG terminal

The Oregon Department of State Lands (DSL) is currently accepting public comments on the application to dredge Coos Bay in order to accommodate the proposed Jordan Cove LNG terminal. The amount of material that they propose to dredge out of the Coos Bay estuary would fill the Rose Bowl stadium in Pasadena nearly 14 times! Help us reach the goal of submitting 500 comments to the Department of State Lands asking them to deny the application from Port of Coos Bay for massive dredging to accommodate the Jordan Cove LNG terminal.

For more than five years, multinational energy companies have targeted southern Oregon for a proposed Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) import facility in the Coos Bay estuary and a 234-mile gas pipeline across Coos, Douglas, Jackson and Klamath counties. Oregonians have worked to stop this fossil fuel project that threatens the climate and Oregon's rivers, salmon, forests, communities and hundreds of private property owners. The project is still a long way from getting all the state and federal approvals it would need to start any construction, but vigilance is key and we need your help to stop this project and protect Oregon! Click here and visit our action page to have your voice heard. The Oregon Department of State Lands (DSL) is currently accepting public comments on the application to dredge Coos Bay in order to accommodate the proposed Jordan Cove LNG terminal. The amount of material that they propose to dredge out of the Coos Bay estuary would fill the Rose Bowl stadium in Pasadena nearly 14 times! Such extensive dredging would harm the estuary, which contributes to fundamental ecological processes that support coastal ecosystem health. The project would damage sensitive essential habitat for shellfish, salmon, sturgeon and other fish, as well as resting and foraging areas for migratory and resident shorebirds and waterfowl. Despite the enormous environmental impacts that this proposal would have on the estuary, the application is full of inconsistencies, has not been made available in a fully legible format and the comment period is so short that it precludes meaningful public review. Most importantly, the project is not needed. It is time to tell DSL to deny this application and protect Oregon from an unnecessary LNG terminal and pipeline! We need 500 people to send a message to Oregon Department of State Lands (DSL) to let them know that we are concerned about this application. Follow this link to our action page for an easy way to send a comment.

From Portland Indymedia:
http://portland.indymedia.org/

Assassination in Arizona

Six deaths and twelve wounded people accompanied a political assassination attempt on Saturday.

The politician was US Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords, of Arizona

Among the deceased were US District Judge John Roll (40 years of service) and nine year old Christina Green.

THE Student Insurgent does not endorse violence, on behalf of governments or individuals for this reason- you cannot put a value on human life. The death of a person leaves no satisfaction, only a hollow loss. No hatter how strongly any person dislikes another person, we cannot be corrupted by the belief that our situation will be improved by the taking of another's life. Not in the name of politics, of nationalism, religion or any other belief system.

These deaths make a shift in our social dynamic, one of polarization, deep divides and little hope of reconciliation. These divides are being channeled into more and more extreme ideologies that reinforce violent action. This action may have come to a head with deaths, but how long before it is not just not jobs, are the United States headed for fractionalization?

Only time will tell, for now, may the families of the dead and wounded find solace.