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"Give me your tired, your poor

Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free

The wretched refuse of your teeming shore

Send these, the homeless, tempest-toss'd to me

I lift my lamp beside the Golden Door."

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Hundreds of Oregon Corporations Escape the Minimum Tax

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Half of the US Is Broke

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The myth of the Christian country

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“The test of our progress is not whether we add more to the abundance of those who have much; it is whether we provide enough for those who have too little.”

FDR, 2nd Inaugural Address, Jan 20, 1937

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A Just Peace

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SIP contract online

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Middle East friendship chart

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Corporations enriching shareholders

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- Intel tax abatements

- INTEL, come clean!

- Leashing INTEL  

- Free to Be Hungry

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Facts not fiction on universal gun background checks

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"Injustice anywhere is injustice everywhere"

Letter from Birmingham Jail, April 16, 1963

Martin Luther King, Jr.

The GOP - Not One of US.

Wall Street, our new criminal class...       

   Business in the USA is sitting on $2 trillion dollars refusing to invest their own funds in expanding and hiring workers.  

   When one adds to this the reserves that banks, equity firms and hedge funds have - the picture is clear - "capitalism in the USA is on strike." 

   The engine of our economy - the spirit of entrepreneurship is not in evidence today.  So much for business being dynamic and risk taking. 

   They hire K- Street lobbyists and their ilk at the state level because they are averse to risk taking - pleading for tax breaks, tax credits and endless loopholes. 

   The "business of business" in America today is not about job creation, it's about wealth hoarding and redistribution from the middle class to the top 1%. 

   So for those who claim government doesn't create jobs, my response is that business doesn't either until given "corporate welfare" by government.  The fact is that the private and public sector are highly integrated, something the anti-tax, anti-government Tea Party types don't understand. 

   Job creation requires public/private partnerships but the benefits of such collaboration should go to the 99% not just the 1%.  

 

RAD'S

WEBSITE PICKS: 


 

  • An Independent View

Oregon Outpost

  • A Middle East View      

Rami G. Khouri

  • RealClearPolitics:

Realclearpolitics

  • Jim Hightower:   

Jimhightower.com

  • Robert Reich:

Robert Reich

  • Thomas Friedman: 

Friedman Column

  • Nicholas Kristof: 

Kristof Column

Oregon's Motto: 

She flies with her own wings! 


Hard Times in Oregon: 

Hardtimes

The Oregon story - the rich get richer, the poor and middle class lose ground.  Check this front page Oregonian article out. 

Oregon wage gap widens

Homelessness in Oregon - a call to action

Chuck Currie The crisis of homelessness


  

      Oregon's coming 34th out of 41 states in the Obama "Race to the Top" illustrates the failure of leadership from Governor Kitzhaber and his predecessors as they have built an educational bridge to nowhere called high stakes testing.

   Instead of being in a race to the top we seem to be dumpster diving to the bottom despite doing education reform since 1991.  Insanity is termed doing the same thing over and over again.  When can we put a fork in this stupidity? 

   To confuse matters more the Oregonian's editorial board has pontificated that this was a lost opportunity to get federal funding for innovation.  How firing principals and teachers equals innovation is a mystery to me.   

   The way to reform schools is to reduce class sizes, to encourage teacher collaboration and to support their continued education.  High stakes testing and performance based assessment of teachers are NOT the answer!    

   If you want students to succeed you first have to resolve the issues they confront before they come to school.  Children who face poverty, hunger, homelessness, health care issues and family instability require wrap around services for them and their families, 24/7.   

   Every child needs a safe home of their own and parents who know how to be good parents.   

There is only one way to address this impending crisis.  Schools must have a stable source of funding. Until that happens - we will limp from crisis to crisis.   

 

 

    

    Why does the richest nation in the world have the moral blight of homeless people?

Invisible People

http://www.npr.org


 Homelessness

    Connecting the dots between homelessness & hunger in Oregon and Washington County: 

Homelessness:  

•    The faces of the homeless are families with children, single men and women, vets, and many who are impaired. It is estimated that in Washington County up to 56% of homelessness occurs to families.

Hunger:

•    Hunger is highest among single mother households (10%) and poor families (15%) as well as renters, unemployed workers and minority households. 

     In Washington County, Oregon's "economic engine," the divide between the affluent and the working poor continues.  We have a 19,000 unit gap in affordable low income rental housing.  County political and business leaders are indifferent to this crisis...   


A RAD rhetorical question - Were Madison & Marx "Marxists"?  

 

"History records that the money changers have used every form of abuse, intrigue, deceit, and violent means possible to maintain their control over governments."   

- James Madison

 

"Philosophers have only interpreted the world in different ways. The point is, however, to change it. 

- Karl Marx

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

RAD Lines

There are 42 housing units for every 100 low income families in Oregon

Housing Needs in Oregon 

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#1445: Tommy, Riposa in Pace

requiescat in pace

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"There are men who believe that democracy... is limited or measured by a kind of mystical and artificial fate [and that] tyranny and slavery have become the surging wave of the future..." 

FDR, 3rd Inaugural Address, Jan 20, 1941

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Obamacare is working in Oregon!

Oregon's uninsurance rate cut more than half following federal health reforms

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Mourning for a Judaism Being Murdered by Israel

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Taking on the Pro-Israel Lobby 

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Sign the petition ►

Walgreens - pay your fair share of taxes!

"Let me issue and control a nation's money and I care not who writes the laws." - Mayer Amschel Rothschild

Miguel de Cervantes, from The Duke - "I accuse you of being an idealist, a bad poet and an honest man."  Cervantes' response - "Guilty as charged, I have never had the courage to believe in nothing."   from Man of La Mancha  

Intel failed to report fluoride emissions for almost 30 years   

     Why do Intel employees who are house hunting in Hillsboro, Aloha or Beaverton refer to an area within a 5 mile radius of Intel plants as "the dead zone?"  

      Do they know something we don't?  QuestionIntel.com  We couldn't trust banks "too big to fail," so why should we trust Intel?

Professor Kingfield, from the Paper Chase

   "I'm not a teacher: only a fellow traveler of whom you asked the way. I pointed ahead – ahead of myself as well as you." 

- George Bernard Shaw

 

BLOGS:

From the Left Wing:

Paul Krugman

Paul Krugman - The New York Times

Democracy Now
democracynow.org

The Daily Kos

dailykos.com

Blue Oregon

blueoregon.com

 

"Children are made readers on the laps of their parents." 

- Emilie Buchwald 

 


    "Although we may never know with complete certainty the identity of the winner of this year’s Presidential election, the identity of the loser is perfectly clear. It is the Nation’s confidence in the judge as an impartial guardian of the rule of law." 

- Justice John Paul Stevens, Bush v. Gore, 2001


    The state of our union - check out the map, it's a reality check for those who can't figure out why people are so ticked off... 

americanobserver

    Here's Garrison Keillor's rap on the rightwingnuts:   

GarrisonKeillor

 

     Garrison Keillor - "...The Founding Fathers intended the Senate to be a fount of wisdom... but when you consider...  moon-faced Mitch McConnell, your faith in democracy is challenged severely. Any legislative body in which 41 senators from rural states that together represent 10 percent of the population can filibuster you to death is going to be flat-footed, on the verge of paralysis, no matter what. Any time 10 percent of the people can stop 90 percent, it's like driving a bus with a brake pedal for each passenger. That's why Congress has a public approval rating of [11] percent...." 


"Great is the guilt of an unnecessary war"

- John Adams

 

"Loyalty to country always.  Loyalty to government when it deserves it."  

- Mark Twain  

 

“Those who fail to learn from history are doomed to repeat it.”  

- George Santayana 

 

"The love of one's country is a natural thing.  But why should love stop at the border?" 

- Pablo Casals

 

"Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold; mere anarchy is loosed upon the world, the blood-dimmed tide is loosed, and everywhere the ceremony of innocence is drowned; the best lack all conviction, while the worst are full of passionate intensity." 

- William Butler Yeats  

 

"You see things; and you say, 'Why?'

But I dream things that never were; and I say, "Why not?" 

- George Bernard Shaw, "Back to Methuselah" (1921)

 

"...the most common and durable source of factions has been the various and unequal distribution of property. Those who hold and those who are without property have ever formed distinct interests in society...  The regulation of these various and interfering interests forms the principal task of modern legislation, and involves the spirit of party and faction in the necessary and ordinary operations of the government..."

- James Madison, Federalist Papers #11


"Why … should we have government? Why not each individual take to himself the whole fruit of his labor, without having any of it taxed away?”  

The legitimate object of government, is to do for the people whatever they need to have done, but which they can not do, at all, or can not do, so well, for themselves – in their separate and individual capacities … There are many such things … roads, bridges and the like; providing for the helpless young and afflicted; common schools … the criminal and civil [justice] departments."

- Abraham Lincoln

 

Taxes are the price we pay for a civilized society

- Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr.

 

"Parliament is not a congress of ambassadors from different and hostile interests, which interests each must maintain, as an agent and advocate, against other agents and advocates, but Parliament is a deliberative assembly of one nation, with one interest, that of the whole..."

- Edmund Burke 

 

“It is a maxim among these lawyers that whatever hath been done before may legally be done again, and therefore they take special care to record all the decisions formerly made against common justice and the general reason of mankind.  These, under the name of precedents, they produce as authorities, to justify the most iniquitous opinions.”

- Jonathan Swift

 

" Every satirist who drew breath has flung pots of ink at this parade of tooting lummoxes and here it is come round again, marching down Main Street, rallying to the cause of William McKinley, hail, hail, the gang’s all here, ta-ra-ra-boom-de-ay."

- Garrison Keillor


 

 

 

 

 

 

  

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

 

 


 

 

  

 


  

 

Tuesday
Jan122016

INTEL AGREES TO BE A "GOOD NEIGHBOR"  

     Editor's note:  Below is a summary of a long process that began in August of 2013 caused by Intel's unreported emissions.  It illustrates what an active and engaged group of citizens can accomplish with some timely legal assistance.  It also shows that citizens can successfully negotiate with a global economic giant, the largest employer in Oregon. 

     This is not a perfect or even final solution.  But it is a promising start.  As I've said time and time again - politics is not a sprint but a marathon.  

Good Neighbor Agreement

Background

     At the request of OSU Extension and CPO members, DEQ conducted an information meeting re Intel toxic emissions permit application in August of 2013.  About 25 citizens attended.  Appalled to learn that the permit could be approved without a hearing, an attendee asked why.  DEQ informed that if 5 people requested, there would be a hearing.  The entire audience raised their hands in support of a hearing. 

     The hearing was held September of 2013. 25 or so testified.  DEQ was to transcribe the hearing testimony but they claimed their recorders didn’t function and they would have to rely on written submittals.  The community was amazed to learn that DEQ lacked authority and funds to be more than a facilitator of industry permitting.  Neighbors for Clean Air’s John Krallman attended the hearing and observed local community concern.

Settlement Agreement

     In October 2013, Intel self reported to DEQ that they had failed to report fluoride emissions over 30 years.  The emissions were not noted as being particularly harmful in tonnage and concentration.  This created an opening and Neighbors for Clean Air (NCA), partnering with the Northwest Environmentall Defense Council (NEDC), issued a 60 Day Notice of Intent to Sue under the Clean Air Act alleging violations of the Oregon State Implementation Plan. (October 22, 2013).   

     A cooling off period of negotiations was undertaken.  NCA and NEDC consulted with a number of those that had testified and this resulted in a Settlement Agreement (May 29, 2014) between Intel and NCA/NEDC.  It included the development of an Air Quality Advisory Committee (AQAC), Intel cooperating with a Health Risk Assessment (HRA) of proposed toxic emissions, and the development of an ongoing Good Neighbor Agreement: GNA.

     While NCA and NEDC were the legal parties to the agreement, they asked community members from Washington County to become advisory to them. WC-CAN and Save Helvetia were 2 community organizations involved from the start. All meetings of the AQAC were public and public comment was taken at each meeting. 

     The AQAC met throughout 2015. The HRA was completed in November of 2015.  The HRA assessed the potential health risks to the community posed by the toxic air pollutants Intel emits.  While the HRA did not identify any pollutants being emitted in concentrations that NCA and NEDC believe warranted immediate corrective action by Intel, the report summarized the potential additional risk to the community members from Intel’s emissions. 

The HRA can be viewed at www.ORAQAC.com

Good Neighbor Agreement Components Excerpted

Some items began before the formal GNA: emissions inventory, installation of meteorological monitoring at facilities, emissions testing, and health risk assessment.

  1. This agreement is between Intel, Neighbors for Clean Air, and the Northwest Environmental Defense Council. 

  2. NCA and NEDC will include members of the Washington County community to advise them and sit on an ongoing Air Quality Advisory Committee.  NCA and NEDC are in process of reconstituting this group. 

  3. The Term of the GNA is December 17, 2015 for 5 years.  

  4. The GNA focuses on the Type 4 permit application submitted by Intel for D1X submitted December 31, 2014.

  5. Meteorological monitoring at the Aloha and Ronler facilities to be made available to the public via www.exploreintel.com.

  6. Intel agrees to have approved tester perform periodic testing on scrubbers and rotary concentrator thermal oxidizers for toxic air contaminates (TACs) on an agreed upon schedule. Upon written request, Intel will provide raw data to the AQAC.  Intel will provide written reports to AQAC.

  7. AQAC can submit up to 3 names of citizen representatives to observe testing, 10 days prior.

  8. At least quarterly meetings.  All meetings to be public;  public comment at meetings; 15 days notice of meetings to be communicated by Intel; annual schedule of meetings to be established by January 1st for the year.

  9. Up to 5 community reps with 2 alternates.  Intel will have 2 reps and 1 alternate.

  10. Intel agrees to employ reasonable efforts to achieve target reductions in TACs agreed upon, providing the AQAC annual updates.  The target reductions are to “incent” Intel to minimize air emissions, not to prevent expansion or development of the Facility. 

  11. AQAC shall create a work plan and meeting agendas, and may create subcommittees.

  12. AQAC shall develop a plan for ambient air quality monitoring in the community to be undertaken by a third party acceptable to Intel and Neighbor Groups: $150,000.

  13. AQAC is not a voting body that makes policy. It is a “framework” through which Intel and Neighbor Groups can communicate regarding air quality and seek to reach agreement on future actions. 

  14. The AQAC may explore funding opportunities for expanded community based air quality monitoring and to develop community knowledge about air quality. 

  15.  AQAC may make additional recommendations re reduction of harmful exposures of TACs emitted by Intel.

  16. Intel to provide AQAC administrative support. 

Covenants

  • Mutual release of claims and demands,

  • Participants not to advocate for expanded requirements of Intel through the permits or permit renewal

  • Participants agree not to go to court

  • Participants to not aid and assist others in 2 or 3 above

  • Dispute resolution, meet and confer, mediation, judicial enforcement

  • Notice

  • Binding, amendments, trade secrets, waiver, force majeure, severability, execution

Summary

  1. Over the course of 3 years, NCA/NEDC with the support of “neighbor groups” has achieved the first ever HRA of a major emitter in Oregon!

  2. For the first time, the public has achieved knowledge of their relative health risks v.v. Intel’s facilities in Washington Co!

  3. Now, the public will have access to ongoing emissions monitoring, periodic testing of equipment by a third party, accessible meteorological monitoring data, and a framework for ongoing reductions in TACs via the AQAC!

  4. The public can observe and make comment at future AQAC meetings. 

  5. www.orquac.com will continue to house minutes, studies, agreements, and responses to public comment and www.exploreintel.com will host meteorological data.

This is diligent, community-based advocacy in the face of lackluster government authority, over-site and concern.                   

Robert Bailey for Save Helvetia                        

January 12, 2016

Monday
Jan112016

WHAT UNCLE PHIL WANTS - HE GETS...  

     Nike's Phil Knight's money was the lubricant to "educate" governor Kitzhaber and Brown about the value of using tax payer dollars to attract an international track and field event to Track Town, USA. 

     Bottom line, nobody in Oregon except Peter Courtney can say "NO" to Uncle Phil.  This is why Knight is such a pernicious influence on Oregon politics.  Money talks, big money talks loudly.  

Friday
Jan082016

ECHOS OF THE PAST?  

     EDITOR'S NOTE:  I've taken the liberty of using a picture of victims in a Nazi death camp to draw a parallel to what's happening in Syria at the hands of the Assad government. 

     As the world stood silent in WW II for too long - so to does it now as diplomats ring their hands and the UN is impotent.  The rhetoric of "never again" rings hollow as it did in Pol Pots' Cambodia, Rwanda, the Central African Republic and now Syria. 

From "The World, PRI" - Boston

     About 30,000 people have been trapped in the city of Madaya, not far from the Syrian capital of Damascus, since last July.

     According to residents and activists, Syrian and Hezbollah forces have besieged the city, put up checkpoints and kills anyone who tries to escape. They have also planted landmines in order to prevent residents from fleeing.

     "The only food that entered the town was back in October,” says Dr. Ammar Ghanem, who is a member of the board of the Syrian American Medical Society.

     He explains the food was “enough for a day or less.”

     Since then, the residents have been scrambling to survive. They have resorted to eating boiled grass and leaves. They have been feeding infants just water and salt.  The videos and images emerging from the town show severely malnourished bodies. Children look pale and emaciated, the elderly barely alive.

Note: This video of a malnurished boy may be disturbing for some viewers.

Residents of the besieged town of Madaya in Syria are suffering from acute malnutrition

     Residents of Madaya in Syria have been under siege since July. The last time food entered the town was back in October. Now horrific images of children suffering from acute malnutrition have left the world in shock.

     Ghanem, who has family in the area, tells the story of his cousin whose husband was arrested by the Syrian regime, tortured and killed. She was left with six children.

     One day, as she was shopping in the market, she was picked up by government forces and taken to Madaya — which Ghanem calls an open air prison. Separated from her six children, she tried to escape. That didn't happen; she stepped on a landmine.

     "Part of her right foot is being amputated and she had big injuries on the body," Ghanem says. "See the suffering?"

     Since the grim pictures and videos of starving children started circulating online, the Syrian government has agreed to let aid into the town. The Red Cross has also said it would deliver food, medical supplies and blankets by Monday.

     But Ghanem says time is limited. He spoke with residents this morning and says nothing has changed. "More delay, more people are [going to die]," he says.

Monday
Jan042016

OREGON TO MILITIA - "DON'T COME, DON'T STAY..."  

The "outside agitators" ugly birds occupying Malheur Field Station are a pain in the proverbial ass.  

     EDITOR'S NOTE:  Updated - see "Comments" section - Jan. 9 regaarding the "Resolution of the people of Harney County" (document below)

     So far our governor, local, state police and FBI have been silent as the lambs.  One wonders if the reaction would be any different if the gun totting zealots were other than people of "White Privilege"?  Granted one doesn't want a repeat of Ruby Ridge or Waco.  But when will patience wear thin?  Then what?  Hopefully Mother Nature will remove the problem as the weather gets colder...   

     The rationale of the militia fanatics is thin as early ice on a Minnesota lake.  From the earliest of our history the government has exerted the right to own and manage property for public purposes.  It began with the Erie Canal, expanded in the Louisiana Purchase and then accelerated with Teddy Roosevelt's creation of the national park system in the name of conservation and historical preservation. 

     If anyone has a claim on land in the US it's the Native American community who were here first and faced land theft, extermination and removal to reservations.  The African-American community also has a similar right based on the slave trade and forced labor under slavery.  To those White dudes with rifles near Burns - go to court for a redress of grievances.  But get in line first - until hell freezes over. 

     If you can't wait - move to Trumptowers, Cruzlanida or Rubiovilla - they will leave a light on for any and all gun/Bible hugging rednecks...  

     Ranchers in the West have had limited and controlled access for decades to federal lands to graze their cattle but this is not a "natural right" but a privilege extended under a contractual obligation which can be terminated.  This case started with the refusal of the brothers from Burns to pay back taxes and illegal burning!  Over grazing is also a serious environmental issue.  

     Grazing on publc lands in the West comes at a significantly reduced rate - $1 to $8/acre compared to @ $20 if one uses only private land.  This "deal" expects farmers/rancheer to mend fenses (as they would on pivate property) and to abide by watering rules.  Who pays the difference - the American taxpayer to the tune of over $100 million/year. 

     Use equals ownership - not!  It's OUR land you are using!  Pay up or ship out.   It's ironic that President Obama is invoking executive power to deal with gun fetishism, 30,000 killed per year, while these rifle brandishing rightwingnuts make Oregon a laughing stock from coast to coast and on the BBC.  The best thing to do is for the media to turn off the camera denying these mixed nuts their 15 minutes of infamy.    

     As Woody Guthrie wrote and sang... 

This land is your land  This land is my land
From California to the New York island;
From the red wood forest to the Gulf Stream waters
This land was made for you and Me.

     Woody unlike the Supremes didn't think corporate entities - agri-business et al were "people."  

Thursday
Dec312015

IN WITH THE NEW, OUT WITH THE OLD!

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