Archive | June, 2010

Update on Toronto G20 and more international news

28 Jun

After spending over 1 billion dollars on security, the Toronto government arrested over 900 people during the protests against the G20.

In other news, the government of Australia has blocked all reporting and journalism surrounding the governments allowance of a Chinese mining firm to dump waste in the ocean.

Strong police repression revealed itself in St. Petersburg, Russia, as 5 people marching in a gay rights protest found themselves in the captivity of Russian police. Gay rights are a huge issue in Eastern Europe, where conservative patriarchy often facilitates fascist violence against the exercise of sexual difference.

400+ arrested in Toronto, Thousands Attend Hands Across the Sands

27 Jun

Over 400 people were arrested protesting the G20 meeting in Toronto yesterday as 20,000 protesters showed up to heckle the leaders of the 20 richest countries in the world. Most of the protesters were totally nonviolent, but some marched in a black bloc, throwing projectiles at police, breaking bank and shop windows and setting things on fire. Four police cars were consumed in flames in different places, and police used the destruction to justify dispersal tactics like rubber bullets, tear gas and brute force against peaceful protesters. There are prominent reports of police brutality flooding out, including the beating of reporter, Jesse Rosenfeld.

In other news, Hands Across the Sands took place yesterday in over 800 cities across the United States, attracting thousands to hope in their SUVs and drive to the Gulf Coast (particularly Florida) in protest of offshore oil drilling. No government response yet . . .

And finally, thousands gathered in Detroit to march against dirty energy. The coalition rallied against incineration and heavy diesel traffic in particular with large banners and wooden sunflowers symbolizing “green” energy.

Hands Across the Sands

25 Jun

From Jack Nounnan:

Please to tell others….

Everyone encouraged to attend one of these “Hands across the Sand” events locally, in face of these oil calamities….a more silent ‘presence’ and way to begin this ‘sea change’ confronting our lives… with our simple power of the collective conscience…and motivating us to reflect and determine what we must do beyond gatherings… to making needed and great changes to save our life.

Gatherings are happening around the country
http://www.handsacrossthesand.com/

Worth noting: Dr. Masaru Emoto, the Japanese scientist, researcher who unveiled the characteristics of water with its physical responses to our emotions, tells how people with predominantly angry emotions near water, actually make it dull, while it’s more brilliant, shimmering, more vibrant and obviously ‘alive ‘ in proximity toxpeople expressing good will.

His message here on the eve of our gathering’s on our beaches Saturday:

“I send this (prayer) energy of love and gratitude to the waters and all living creatures in the Gulf of Mexico and its surroundings…to the whales, dolphins, pelicans, fish, shellfish, planktons, corals, algae … humankind … to ALL. (It’s about this calendar day, set aside for asking forgiveness)

We can harmoniously blend the Absolute and the relative, knowing compassion and truth are great revitalizers and sustainers of life.

Updates:
A.P. 6/23… Judge lifts offshore ban on drilling. Says:”It was rash and heavy handed … and (after all) only one spill. ….It will have immeasurable effect upon industry…and the ban refused to take into consideration the safety record of companies.”

A.P. 6/23… Oil execs close ranks behind BP in slamming drilling ban!…(mentioning plans to start drilling in the Mediterranean soon.

A.P. 6/22… Oil spill off the coast of Egypt in the Red Sea, which continues, despite governments reports, which have lied about having it contained!

A.P. 6/1. Environ. gr. .. Warns us the Obama administration … on the verge of supporting removing the International ban on whale hunting.

Regularly now we’re hearing of oil giants plans to start drilling in the Arctic this fall

A.P. 6/24 DesMoines, Iowa…40,000 gallon aquarium showcase of sea beauty, teeming with life, now is simply water, empty of life, dull, with artificial coral, appearing like an oil spill.

A.P. 6/24 BP again, their container ‘accidentally’ knocked over BY (human/technical errors we can always count on)…the full impact of this oil loose again.

p.s. our first stop on the tour went well at the Journal Roadshow. Thanks to Lawrence, Kansas and the Percolator Gallery!

Two New Oil Spills as Industry Continues to Expand

24 Jun

In the midst of new disasters, environmentalist stand against plans to expand infrastructure and development of industry. On June 16, an oil tanker began leaking its cargo into the Red Sea off the coast of Egypt, jeopardizing the ecosystems of several pristine islands, waters and coral reefs. Although details released have been scant and sketchy at best, according to biologist Ahmed el-Droubi “there are dead birds and dead sea turtles scattered across the island covered in oil.” At the same time, in the US, the EPA is cleaning up an oil spill that has been leaking out of an abandoned pipeline close to Arcadia Lake, Oklahoma for an undefined amount of time. 250 gallons of oil have been found in the nearby Canada River so far.

While these spills draw more concern towards the rising plight of the environmental conditions of our Earth, BP moves forward with their dangerous plan to drill in Alaska and politicians move forward with the Canada tar sands pipeline. BP’s Alaska project would drill two miles undersea and then 6 to 8 miles horizontally to reach an oil reserve that contains an estimated 100 million barrels of oil. BP was allowed to conduct its own environmental study in preperation for these plans, as federal regulators broke with practice to grant permits to the unprecedented project. The Canada tar sands pipeline would stretch 2,000 miles, from Alberta, Canada to Texas and the Gulf Coast. Experts are calling the project “a BP disaster waiting to happen”, and 50 members of US Congress are campaigning against it.

The big enviros seem to have a big answer to the emerging crisis: buy ad space, do publicity stunts, get info out there and ask people to become more involved in the democratic process. According to an article in the Washington Post, four environmental groups (League of Conservation Voters, the Sierra Club, Service Employees International Union and VoteVets.org, or the Gang Green, as we like to call them) is planning an 11 million dollar advertising program to pressure politicians to regulate greenhouse gasses. Reaching out through the media is important, but stemming the crisis obviously goes beyond these kinds of compromises.

Center for Food Safety’s (CFS) announcement of victory after a court lifted a ban against Monsanto-engineered alfalfa is a perfect example of the impotence of environmental groups today in the hands of the judicial system and the corporate media. The CFS is obviously trying to manipulate the media spectacle surrounding the impunity of the insidious GMO manufacturer by presenting themselves as “in control” when they come up empty after a long struggle through the political process. While corporations do need to be targeted as well as legislative decisions, the direct action aproach is the only thing that remains.

The international whaling ban faltering, and environmentalism against the ropes, we need the movement reinvigorated, with the energy and momentum of hundreds of years of struggle. Maybe local, bioregional direct action in defense of the Earth isn’t the only answer, but its sorely needed to support the rest.

By the way, the roadshow is in Kansas! Come see us at the Percolator Gallery at 8pm tonight!

From the Shadows: Toronto, Minneapolis and the ALF

20 Jun

This year’s G20 protest in Toronto is shaping up to be the biggest ever… The Toronto Community Mobilization Network is planning themed days of protest of environmental justice and indigenous solidarity. Organizers are filing injunctions against the use of sound cannons, but oppression is increasing on the streets as two activists have already been arrested for putting up posters about the event.

Meanwhile, folks in St. Paul/Minneapolis have begun stepping up protests against the war in Afghanistan, since US forces have accelerated both the killing of civilians and the faciliation of the exploitation of the nation’s raw materials.


And in other news, the Animal Liberation Front broke a lengthy period of silence, claiming responsibility for an April 30 arson that destroyed a Sheepskin Factory in Denver and a June 11 Tandy Leather Factory store in Salt Lake City, Utah. The communique, signed “ALF Lone Wolf” and sent June 15, declared, “Be warned that making a living from the use and abuse of animals will not be tolerated.” On June 12, a hunting stand was destroying in Minnesota by a group calling itself the Animal Rights Militia. Their imperative: “There is no excuse for inaction. Get out and fight!” Activists are wondering if this recent upsurge in militant animal rights action could forebode further actions in the future. See Bite Back for more about global direct action in defense of the environment.

Distress on the High Seas

19 Jun

Sea Shepherd vessel, the Steve Irwin, was attacked today in Libyan waters as it attempted to free Bluefin from cages. Their Operation Blue Rage has gone swimmingly until now, and the Steve Irwin is currently heading up to International waters.

This latest attack is ominous, considering Captain Bethune’s recent trial in Japan. Bethune was found guilty of several charges after he boarded the ship of a captain responsible for ramming and sinking a Sea Shepherd vessel under his command.

To make matters worse, former allies with the WWF and Greenpeace have turned tail on the international whaling ban that has been in effect for over two decades, leaving Sea Shepherd, which employs direct action on the side of International law by using aggressive methods to deter whaling vessels, in the lurch.

Roadshow and News Roundup!

19 Jun


A picture of our badass roadshow bus!!! We are in Arroyo Seco, NM right now—Next stop, Feral Futures. . .

For those following the Redwood Curtain controversy, a coalition of environmental groups filed suit against Caltrans for planning to build a highway through the Redwoods.

We won’t refer you to commercial media very often, but apparently there’s a new documentary called “Gasland” that’s getting a lot of hype for its revelations on the natural gas industry and, especially, fracking.

Over 100 people protested outside of the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) today in Japan, demonstrating against nuclear power, which is a mainstay of “Green” economics.

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