Mood: crushed out
Now Playing: "Storm The Bastille, with calls and pickets"
[copied from Facebook]
WEEK OF 22ND SEPTEMBER
[Originally posted on Facebook by Joe Walsh] 10.1.13
This week, Individuals For Justice were out and about. We were at the City Council meeting on the 25th and fought alongside of Cop Watch, Charlie Johnson from KBOO and the ACLU over a report concerning the actions of the police. The report, like everything else that is directed or influenced by the police, was a sham. They found that over 80% of people being subjected to exclusion orders are African- Americans. They don’t see a problem with this number and defended the police for outstanding work. (African-Americans make up about 6-7% of our population)
We pointed out that hotspots are violations in themselves because if you go into an area that has been labeled a “Hotspot” you are going to treat people very different than say in front of the Justice Center. It would seem once again the council had reservations about this report but voted to accept it. We were not happy when we left the council. The next morning it was off to see our friends at the County. The County Board is working well with no Cogen. We did not offer any testimony because we had nothing to say. The Hotel that metro wants is a done deal and we hope it fulfills all the hype offered by the President of Metro; we hope but have grave doubts. We called for all who we know to help out Jose Serrica who has requested we support his effort to assist those who are on the streets with things they may need. He has been doing this for a while now and knows what he is doing. He asked for a $100.00 a month and Individuals For Justice will cover half and asked the people we know to help. That is what we do, we fight, we yell, we compliment, we assists others in their quest to do good. We also write some!
I forgot to tell you about a wonderful presentation by Mr. Thomas Linzey. He talked about thinking outside, under, alongside the box; never inside. He told us about communities that would not give up even when they were beaten by the corporations. They said, hell no! Read his book called, “Be The Change.” I will! David Delk, Alliance for Democracy, gets the credit for this one, it was great. Thank you Thomas and David, you make me smile.
Went back to the Hawthorne Bridge with the winds and rains, I was hoping for the sympathy vote, standing in the rain always gets you some horns blasting, it was fun but very windy. I just held my sign thanking people for calling, emailing or talking about not bombing Syria---it worked, we have not bombed those poor people who are suffering and don’t need us to bomb them in order to save them. We hope the UN succeeds in its effort to stop the violence.
We went to a press conference on the 14 floor of the Justice Center. Sarah Hobbs asked for our support and Malcolm, Charlie Johnson and I showed up and had a ball. The press conference had to do with an analysis of completed suicides. The period of study was April 2011-June 2013. We asked questions and met with the unit called Behavioral Health Unit, there was a VA rep. and other people who work in the health field who are all concerned about our standing in the nation; we are among the highest cities to have suicides every four days. There are other issues we would have loved to have examined but we were cut off. We did get to talk to some of the professionals and asked them to come and talk to our groups, they seemed ready to do something like that; we shall see.
Yea, a busy week and we have another one this week but what the hell, we do laugh a lot and we get to do all this stuff for free---ha!
Most of you know that I am not a republican or democrat; I belong to the Oregon Progressive Party. I mention this so you know I do not like ether of these “Two gang of thieves”. But I gotta tell ya, the leadership of the GOP has all gone mad. They will shut down this government in order to hurt this president, which is outrageous and should be rejected by every voter. I know it will not happen, the rejection part, but I just got to say it. Take care and stay safe, we all have much work to do. We must learn to support all those people who are doing good for others and get rid of those who enrich themselves. “Storm The Bastille, with votes and calls.”
A person will go in and ask for a “code word” coffee and the owner or clerk will give him/her one and not charge them because it is prepaid. Our account has money in it for this very reason, the people who are living on the street have a backup so they always have coffee available to them.
The problem is that we are running out of money and that is where you come in, I am asking you to help in the following way. When you are downtown, stop at Bento Coffee & Cookie, 431 SW Madison and put some loot on the account. It is located across from city hall next to the day care in the Portland Building.
Ask the owner to credit the account and that way more people can use our “Coffee Friendship.”
Roberto and I have been doing this and other things for a time now, but our loot is getting low so I thought you might want to help. Please do not send me any money, you must do this on your own or not. We will keep it going because it is a neat idea and the people who are "houseless" like it. The name of the account is under my first name, Joe.
Let me know what you think?
Report of the Adventures of Individuals For Justice and Noble Friends
Barbara, Malcolm and I met Tuesday at 2:45 PM at The World Trades building. It was going to be an interesting meeting with the staff of Senator Merkley.
The day before, I, Judith, and José were also refused entrance to his office to drop off a letter telling the Senator what we Individuals For Justice wanted him to do concerning a pending vote on using air/missiles to attack Syria. The security guard told me the same thing he told Robert, Pam, and Barbara last Friday when they wanted to drop off a Pam’s letter to the Senator.
I told the security guard that I would be, “over-there,” pointing to the middle of the lobby. I sat down in the middle of the lobby and started to hand out copies of the Constitution I had picked up from Rep. Blumenauer’s office just before going to Merkley’s office to see what the hell was going on with access.
After about 30 minutes, Merkley’s constituent-service director Joel Corcoran came down and tried to tell me that they were glad to see us, but we needed an appointment to go upstairs. I said that was unacceptable and was prepared to remain on the floor handing out copies of the Constitution. Joel arranged a conference room off the lobby and offered to meet with us for about 20 minutes. After a vote with José and Judith, Judith and I went into the conference room where he and I got into a screaming match about access with Joel telling me not to scream at him.
We got almost nowhere except on Monday, Joel emailed me and said that if we wanted to, they would be willing to meet on Tuesday and they would make the arrangements. How many would be there and they needed our names. I polled everyone and nobody would agree to that.
So there we were Tuesday at 3 in Merkley’s conference room, the three of us, Joel, and a staffer in charge of access, Merkley’s state director Jeanne Atkins. Because I’d emailed Joel our agenda about access and Syria, they’d arranged for us to skype with Merkley’s senior foreign relations adviser, William L. White to tell us how the Senator Merkley would vote on attacking Syria.
We were not prepared to present our arguments about Syria because we were there mostly to protest access to the Senator’s office and that his staff in Portland were hiding, (in our view) from his constituents. We did a good job presenting what has been our opposition to President Obama’s insistence that the way to peace is bombing. We told White that bombing was foolish and would cost more lives and get us in the middle of a civil war. That the opposition to Assad was worse than he is. And the fact that Senator Merkley was saying he was undecided was most distressing.
We also told Joel and Jeanne and White in DC that we want leadership from Merkley and not some person who tests the wind before making up his mind. We have Senator Wyden, we said, and do not need another one.
Bottom line, did we accomplish anything by spending an hour with the staff. Yes!
Barbara suggested that because building security isn’t going to change its policy, that the office be moved out of the WTC. And we talked about moving to the Federal building where once people go through the metal detectors, that’s it. We also reminded them about how open Rep. Blumenauer’s office is and how constituent friendly the staff is. I don’t know of any Congressional office that is like going to see the President. Security must serve more than just keeping people safe, we kept emphasizing. It must include a way for constituents to stop and get something, to ask a question, drop something off, or just visit the office. We shall see.
Malcolm got in his concern about what is happening in Japan with its leaking reactor at Fukushima. White seemed up-to-date and shared our concern. When we departed the office we felt OK. Not great. But OK. I have not met this staff and meeting them was good in itself. They now know who we are and how we think. There will be follow ups by Individuals For Justice to see how they are doing. Life is so strange sometimes, but as I told the staff of Senator Merkley, you cannot just hide, or protect other staff members 24/7.
We have had very little contact with this staff, so it may take some time for them to change any access policy. We will watch and keep an eye on things and let you know. Meanwhile, please call their office (503-326-3386) and ask that easy and immediate access to the office be open. Tell them they should not be hiding behind some security guard who will tell constituents that they need to make an appointment and cannot go upstairs to drop off anything or just visit to say hello.
I was tired, so off we went home. I was scheduled next day to attend the City Council meeting and a high noon protest about drones. So, we had some fun, took some knocks, laughed a bit and enjoyed every minute of the last few days.
The Council meeting was cool. They acted like human beings and even passed a resolution to send a letter to the FDA about their regulations excluding some people from donating blood. Here’s the URL about it:
We came out of the Council feeling good. Did not yell at anyone and had that high-noon drone protest. I saw José and Cheeto so went over to say hello. But from across the street a guy started yelling at José. Thing were looking OK until this guy came over and went face to face with José. José turned away. I thought the guy was going to sucker punch Jose because he twisted his body to hit hard.
I got in between them and yelled, “Stop!”
The guy picked me up and slammed me down on the concrete. Unfortunately, the first part of my body to hit was the back of my head. I reached back to feel my head and came back with a hand full of blood. I said “shit” a lot.
I asked David who works for the city attorney to call for an ambulance. The bleeding continued until the ambulance arrived along with the fire department and lots of cops. Everyone was concerned because I had a head injury and that is not something to mess with.
But I did not want two things: one, no arrest; two, no hospital unless I had to go. We sat for a time. The ambulance paramedics put me though some memory exercises and left it up to me. I did not go and feel OK, and will watch myself very carefully. Thanks to Charlie for escorting me to the car so I could be driven home by a kind and noble lady.
Tomorrow I fully expect to go to the County meeting and ask them to join our City Council in this wonderful resolution to allow people who are gay to donate blood.
Keep the pressure on concerning the new war they want to get us into, laugh and enjoy life. It is a lot shorter than you think. Thanks, Barbara, Malcolm, Judith, José, the staff of Senator Merkley, the City Council for making me proud to know ya. Thanks David for being so concerned and calling 911 and, yes, I am still an Assho-- Ha!
August 8, 2013
This was a busy week with the politicians, we attended a Policy Board for Oregon Health on August 6th to blast them about not granting the variance the city and Commissioner Novick had requested. This was a long meeting, about 3 hrs. of process, I knew I was at the wrong station. This group had nothing to do with the covering of the reservoirs. They were dealing with things like, "Coordinated Care Model Alignment workgroup" but what the hell since I was there, and spent a few hours listening to them why not move to plan "B." Near the end about 3:45 they had public testimony and I talked about the homeless, the deaths on our streets and the lack of programs that would help the most vulnerable among us. They wanted to talk process, I talked about real life. It was good, and by the expressions on the doctor's faces they are not used to being told things, they are used to telling each other how wonderful they are and how wonderful it was going to be someday! These are good people but we need much more action and less process. After that I went over to the remembering of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. This was a wonderful way to say that war is so wrong, there were dancers and the drum musicians made us all smile. There were speeches and people telling their stories about living on this place called earth. This is an event we go to every year at the Japanese Memorial, many of the best people in Portland attended; VFP-72 allowed me to hold one of their flags, it was a great honor. We wanted to go to the social after the ceremonies but I was going to get up early to attend the City Council meeting on Wednesday morning. I departed sad but glad I went to honor those souls who were killed in an instant, but their memory will haunt us into eternity.
Wednesday, Individuals For Justice did testify on an issue that we were pleased that was restored to the budget. There is a special task force that works to get under age women off the streets and into some type of program and get them away from pimps and other shits who are benefiting by the kids working on the streets. Commissioner Fritz has worked on this issue and fought to get funding replaced that the mayor cut. Not all of the money was restored but a lot of it was, that is good. We hope and will push for the full amount of money to be restored. We left early because I was very tired and needed some rest. Thursday morning was "Jeff Cogen Count- Down Day."
Thursday morning once again I got up early, and headed to let the County Board Chair Jeff (the sleaze) Cogen know he should resign. We met, but the board didn't; no reason given. We knew something was wrong when we walked in and the room where the meeting was to be held was dark. We found out from the security guard that the meeting was cancelled. Here I had my t-shirt on that said, "RESIGN WITH HONOR" on the back "REMAIN IN SHAME."
I had my day count----DAY 21. But no Cogen the sleaze, the room was dark. In a strange way I guess it was fitting; the dark room.
Today we will be back on the Hawthorne Bridge, Westside at 1st and Madison. We will have signs talking about the covering of the reservoirs and the rate increases etc. We should be there about 4:00 PM until about 5:15 PM, this wimp wears out fast on the bridge, but we make some noise and try to have fun. All are welcome and the only rule is be proud of what you put on your sign; no other rules. If you get a chance stop and say hello to a person who is living on the street, they are having a tough time and could use some cheer; just say Hi. That's all folks----
"If you are not pissed now---when?"
(by Joe walsh)
I look to Jose for info and request the same from the ladies and gentlemen of the protest against City Hall and their stupid camping ban. There was a call for help for 0700 on Tuesday, 7/23/2013 because the mayor was going to have maintenance wash down the area and force the people to move. I hate getting up at 5:00 AM; don’t know much about where I am at 0500. So I did get up and of course walked into my bathroom door and banged by old head. “What did you do that for?” said Patty, our dog looked like she was laughing!
I was on my way to take a shower, it took some time to finish my cussing about the bump on my forehead, but “Onward you old shit and move your butt so that you can catch the 0600 #4 bus to downtown." The people on the bus looked like they did this traveling in the middle of night as a regular adventure. I turned on my radio and put in my ear plugs to listen to some music, which would be good. Think about a Mocha from your friend around the corner from the den of thieves, it did wake me up and with all my whining I got to city hall about 0645, and the good people were already awake and across the street from city hall. I did not understand why but talked to Jose and was told that the city wanted to power wash the sidewalks and they needed to protect their stuff. I went over and saw some staff from the council and one person who works for the city attorney. I like David and usually when he is around things go smoothly, I hope for the best. I met a wonderful man whose name was Jim D. Whittenburg; he was prepared to be arrested and was not going to move off the sidewalk when ordered. I came this morning to be a witness, lend support to the people who are forced to live on the streets, not to get arrested but I was not going to see the wonderful man stand alone, so I told him I would go where he went and if that was jail so be it. There were the usual 50 or so cops in the area that I could see, they were going to do a clean sweep and we were going to get caught in the middle of the “Wave of Hales Corruption.”
We waited and waited and about 0900 the police approached and Jim announced he would not move voluntarily and I just said, “I’m with Jim.” I had my USS Independence hat on and a jacket that says, Navy and Peace—Ha! The police did not want to arrest two old guys who were willing to give up some of their liberties so that others have a chance at what we once knew as “Democracy.”
So, off we went to the big house, the justice center for processing and booking, my wife did not know I was going to push the issue, so she was not going to be happy. We were allowed to walk with the two police who were friendly and professional and very uncomfortable about arresting us. We were taken inside the entrance and told to wait on a bench and the police would get things started inside and be out in a few minutes. After about an hour we were given some bottled water and told to wait. We waited and were not handcuffed, could walk out anytime we wanted, it was a strange arrest. I was watching my oxygen and it was getting near the red zone and that is not good, but from time to time I sit at home reading or watching TV and not use oxygen, so I was not in a panic but concerned. Jim was a good companion and the time moved along, the one police officer came out and informed us that they talked it over inside and they were not going to charge us and we were free to leave. Off we went!
I got back to city hall and found that the religious display was taken down; Lighnting’s sculpture was also taken apart, gone! This was not a surprise, but sad. I talked to the group and they seemed to be in good shape, the cops that I came into contact with were professional and that is good. My hope is that because Jim and I were respectful that these two cops may see people who protest a little different considering their experience of today. Patty was home when I arrived and was surprised that I stayed so long, “Well, honey…………………………………arrested”
She seemed ok with the Tuesday event only saying, “You have a busy week coming up you know,” “Yea, but some of it will be fun” I said.
I feel good about what we do, I don’t like getting arrested but sometimes we old folks need to stand firm and not let these young whippersnappers push us around!
Into the streets I say, and bring me a mocha when you see this old grumpy guy standing with a sign for freedom, I love mochas!
Individuals For Justice will be at the City Hall for their meeting at 0930 Wednesday, the dog and pony show does feature the 4 s---s and Commissioner Amanda Fritz who is the only human remaining on this council. We also will be at the County Commissioners meeting on Thursday at 0930 at the Multnomah headquarters on the East-side near Hawthorne & Grand. We want to welcome back Cogen and ask him to resign. Join us if you can!
"We are beyond fascism"- The Lone Vet
There is a moment in "Ghostbusters" that you hear the song, "Who you gonna call?" There really is no one to call because who could really fight against something that does not exist? We find ourselves in the same environment with our government, it does not exist.
Years ago when we were fighting against illegal wars in Vietnam, Cambodia, and Laos we thought we had the courts with us, many times a federal judge would side with one of our military people who had chosen to file as a Conscientious Objector and would order the military to release him/or her. We had some politicians who were out front against the wars, people like Congressman Ron Dellums,
link to www.history.com
We were blessed with people like the Rev. Martin Luther King,
Catholic Workers, The Berrigan Brothers, nuns who went to prison, Buddhist Monks who burned themselves to death in front of the White House and Pentagon.
We had millions in the streets, we had an underground that helped get people to Canada, we had places that agreed with the simple concept that the Vietnam War was a lie and must be stopped. We had true hope, not something that a politician in the White House talked about. Today, there is no functional government left; there is mostly shills who will do the corporations bidding. Here is a dilemma for you, Sen. Feinstein has called Snowden a traitor but said nothing about Cheney being a traitor. Here are words from the 1%:
"I don't look at this as being a whistleblower. I think it's an act of treason," the chairwoman of the Senate Intelligence Committee told reporters.
The California lawmaker went on to say that Snowden had violated his oath to defend the Constitution.
"He violated the oath, he violated the law. It's treason."
Read more: link to thehill.com
Most of our politicians are in the hands of the corporations or they are lunatics. We do have some politicians who do not follow the corporate line, but they are so few and most of them are out to lunch-- nuts. People like Rep. Cantor, Rep. Cruz, Rep. Bachmann, Sen. Rand Paul, and Sen. Sessions.
There are a few, very few, who try to do the right thing, are sane, and not controlled by the corporations, maybe Sen. Sanders. I now believe that the corporate shills crossed political lines and it makes no difference if you are Sen. Wyden or Sen. Graham, you do what you are told. If you put your trust in any politician you are asking to be disappointed. They are mostly shills or nuts, take your choice. We, who are sad for the punishment that awaits people we consider heroes, Bradley Manning, Snowden, and others; will not rest until the people of the United States get off their asses and into the streets. We must have hundreds of thousands saying we are a peaceful nation and don't like what the corporations have given us, we will stand tall. The next revolution in the United States will not be about corrupt government, but corporate government vs. noble government. You are the noble government in waiting, will you look into the morning mirror and say "Yes!" count me in or just wait for another show about the Kardashians. It is your future!
Just received this from a man who is trying to change things, short video of why we old people are standing on a corner downtown. Thanks Jacob!
It Will Be A Long Four Years For Portland, Oregon.
The city of Portland is now under the most corrupt mayor in recent history. I thought Sam Adams was sleazy; Mayor Charlie Hales makes Adams look like an altar boy. Each week there is another scandal and they seem to be ignored by the vast majority of the citizens. The local news has carried the stories but there seems to be little reaction on the streets.
First there was the time he said bye bye to the city even though he did only half of his obligation as a commissioner way back in 2002. He was on his third term as city commissioner but money and opportunity were calling in the private industry and off he went to HDR. When he decided to run for mayor in 2012 there was a problem about where he was living and did he pay taxes in Oregon. The Secretary of State said no problem but the case is now in court and may prove Charlie’s undoing as a politician. He was elected by over 60% of the vote after Smith’s campaign crumbled and crashed late in the election. I did not vote for Charlie and was disappointed with the two top vote getters last November. Charlie has been in office a mere 5 months and scandal after scandal has followed his swearing in. I have to do a new T-shirt with a message each week, sometimes I wear two.
He has acted like a dictator during the city budget meetings and few, if any, of the other commissioners are aware of what will happen at the next meeting. Commissioner Fish spends most of the weekly meetings with his mouth open and Commissioner Saltzman just looks totally lost. Commissioner Novick’s nick name is “Brutus” and he plays the part well. Commissioner Fritz is the bright light each week; she will fight and not just go along with the “suits.”
So, under Charlie’s watch we still have one of his top aides trying to move money out of the water department to the general fund which is illegal without doing some stuff first, like changing the city charter, he not only is still here, he got more responsibility. Then we have the idiot who was acting as a sit-in for the mayor and makes a sexual remark to a County Commissioner at the microphone, not very long ago. He is still at city hall and Charlie has called for an investigation. The man should be out of city hall on paid leave pending the results of the investigation. Our relationship with the county has not been enhanced due to this jerk’s actions. The next time we need help or a favor who are they going to send to ask the county? This entire mess was handled badly and I think we are in for a long four years. I did not like what Adams did on the council as mayor but this guy makes Sam look good and I did not think that was possible. You must attend the weekly meetings, even if you only stay for 30-60 minutes, it is important. There was one case that sent me off to protest outside and inside the den of the 4 suits +1 representative, and that was the Gallagher Smith v City of Portland.
I am not going to give you all the details of the case; you can look it up on Google. A jury awarded Mr. Smith $300,000 because he was beaten so badly by our wonderful cops that he sustained permanent damage. His crime was asking a question. The city attorney wanted to appeal the jury award and the council said, OK? The only one who stood tall on this issue was Commissioner Fritz; the suits slithered around and gave permission to tie the case up for years. There is no basis for an appeal, everyone is just covering their asses and hope the decision comes down when they have moved on, disgusting!
The old but new issue that will consume us is the covering of the reservoirs. This madness will cost anywhere from $500,000,000 to 1 billion dollars and you are going to pay through the nose for it by rate hikes. We are now #3 in the nation, paying for water. Apartment dwellers that don’t pay for water, you are getting screwed also, and the owners will raise your rents to pay for the rate increases. New York received a ten year postponement to cover their reservoirs but our city suits tell us, “We tried but lost.” This battle is just beginning and you’d better pay attention or someday you will wake up and some corporation will own our water. Think the oil companies have a monopoly on oil? If corporations control the drinking water the game is over. You can do without oil; you must have access to water.