Sunday, March 26, 2017


New $250,000 award announced by MIT for civil disobedience.

Trumpcare bill killed only because of massive popular outcry. Now it’s time for the resistance to keep moving forward sez Michael Moore.

City Council of Charlottesville, VA passes a resolution telling congress to move money from the military to human and environmental needs instead of the reverse.

City of Berkeley becomes first city to divest from border wall companies.  Two more cities follow suit.

Ending slavery in America’s jails: California offers alternatives to the prison-industrial complex.

Finito Rato: Spain sends Rato, most corrupt banker-politician to jail.  If they can do it….

Chile Sentences Pinochet-Era Agents for disappearing five communist activists in 1987. Justice eventually—very eventually—catches up with perpetrators. If Chile can do it…

When enough state-supported terror is enough: Iraq suspends Mosul offensive after brutal U.S. airstrike.

In countries around the world, a burgeoning ‘Commons Sector’ is developing effective, ecological alternatives to the increasingly dysfunctional market/state system.

US joins international seed treaty to develop new varieties able to resist climate change, and droughts.

Sierra Club, Greenpeace, and CoalSwarm issue report that the coal industry is in freefall worldwide.

Berkeley City Council unanimously passed a “step Up Housing” initiative, part of which pays for 100 stackable micro-PADS or prefab affordable units to house the city’s most vulnerable homeless residents.

Baltimore City Council voted to raise minimum wage floor to $15/hr—by 2020.

Australian workers lift 61 day long lockout under new collective bargaining agreement with Lactalis and Parmalat.

After months of intransigence, and the loss of 39,000 books, 19,000 of them last copies, and in response to massive popular protest, the City of Berkeley appears poised to fire two of the members of the Board of Library Trustees.


KWMR Post Carbon Radio - Monday, March 27 at 1:00 pm (Pacific Time) - with Co-hosts Bing Gong & Karen Nyhus

Streaming live at: - Community Radio for West Marin
Archived at:
90.5 FM - Point Reyes, 92.3 FM - San Geronimo Valley, & 89.9 FM - Bolinas

War, Militarism, and the Climate
As we anticipate the big climate mobilization next month, join us on Monday for a discussion about the role of war and the military in causing global warming. How much does the U.S. military contribute to climate change? What happened to the old anti-war movement? Can we afford a 10% increase in the military budget? Do we need it? How does the issue of the military's role in climate change fit into a broader social change agenda, including local movements of resistance? 


Our guests will be Janet Weil, long-time Bay Area anti-war activist and former Code Pink staffer. Based in the San Francisco Bay Area, Janet is also a co-founder of the SF 99% Coalition. 

Cecile Pineda, activist and author of Apology to a Whale, Words to Mend a World. Her writing has received numerous awards and citations. Her archive is held by the Stanford University Special collections library. Her website is  Joanna Macy writes of her work: "Cecile Pineda has the nerve to ask the one simple question...that could save us: What has happened to our mind that we are killing our world?"


Sunday, March 19, 2017

Some Good News This Week

U.S. District Judge Derrick Watson of Hawaii blocks the latest version  of the Trump administration’s travel ban (Moslem Ban 2.0), saying it likely violates First Amendment protections.

Maryland Federal judge echoes Hawaii decision. But, according to Rob Hunter, writing in the Guardian UK, “the fate of the new ban will be decided in the streets, not the courts. So don’t assume that judges can do the heavy lifting for us.” The struggle is up to us.

California joined Washington and other states challenging the latest travel ban.

San Francisco Board of Supervisors votes to support DAPL divestment efforts, paving the way for San Francisco to become the first city to actually withdraw funds from companies financing the pipeline.

Other cities having passed similar legislation include Seattle, Alameda, Santa Monica and Davis.

Sami (Laplanders) indigenous people of Norway persuade second largest pension fund to divest from companies linked to building the DAPL.

Storebrand, a Norwegian investment manager divests $35 million from firms tied to DAPL.

Head of UN West Asia’s commission, Rima Khalaf resigns after pressure from the secretary general to withdraw a report accusing Israel of imposing an apartheid regime on Palestinians.

Marissa Alexander freed at last after two years of having to pay for her own ankle monitor.

Families of Yuvette Henderson and Kayla Moore have the right to a jury trial to bring justice for both women assassinated by law enforcement.

Facebook Forbids Police from using its data for surveillance.

Quote of the week:

Instead of foreign policy, we have a sports league kicking the globe around for power and glory and people rooting for their team rather than examining the events in play.

—Judith Bello

Ready for the April 29 Nationwide Climate Action

“I think one of the best things that we can do is look into economic conversion of the defense industry into green industries, working on sustainable and renewable forms of energy and/or connecting with indigenous people who are trying to reclaim their lands from the pollution of the military industrial complex. The best thing to do would be to start on a very local level to reclaim a planet healthy for life.” — Cindy Sheehan

Working with groups determined to participate in the April 29 climate mobilization and planning actions of their own, I offer this DRAFT of a flyer text which makes the connection between militarism with Climate Collapse (fits 8 1/2 X 11):

TO Fight Global Warming & Planetary degradation WE NEED PEACE

Fact 1: The U.S. Military is the greatest unreported polluter on the planet with uninhibited use of fossil fuels, massive creation of greenhouse gases, and extensive release of radioactive and chemical contaminants in the air, water, and soil.

Fact 2: While making war to control more oil, it is a top consumer of fossil fuels,
burning 340,000 barrels a day, 80 percent of the federal energy demand.

Fact 3: The US military has dumped corroding barrels of nuclear waste in the oceans, and chemical contaminants into the soils and water table.

Fact 4: Life on the planet cannot survive continued conventional war making, let alone nuclear war. U.S. wars have created sacrifice zones in the US and worldwide, contaminated by the use of depleted uranium, land mines and cluster bombs.

Fact 5: The U.S. military is an agent of environmental degradation with its destruction of 70 acres of a Guam world heritage site coral reef for a naval harbor.

Fact 6: With its use of sonar, the U.S. Navy is accountable for the deaths of whales and dolphins, all animals which depend on their own sonar for survival.

Fact 7: Instead of making more jobs available for marginalized people, militariz- ation reduces the number of jobs available in all other sectors, including teaching.

Fact 8: While profiting from its wars, the U.S. bankrupts other countries. The U.S. made $53 million on Gulf War I while costing 40 low & middle income countries 1 percent of the GDP, Yemen, 10 percent, and Jordan a whopping 25 percent.

Fact 8: Militarization is not good for kids, 33% of them live in poverty (that includes the US), while the US spends 60% of its budget on militarization.


Rosalie Bertell: Planet Earth

Peace Pays!               Peace Pays!               Peace Pays!               Peace Pays!

Monday, March 13, 2017

Tokyo Olympics Must Go On No Matter What

The Good News This Week 

Acting locally: Cities worldwide take on the climate initiative, outstripping their national governments.

Private prisons face class-action lawsuit for violating—yes, you guessed it—antislavery laws. “Once again, immigrants are at the forefront of actually trying to make our country great again.”

Washington State AG Bob Ferguson who beat back Trump's Muslim ban last month just filed a lawsuit saying the original court order he won already covers the new Muslim ban.
A day without a woman was observed throughout the country.

Texas lawmaker, Jessica Farrar jabs at the state’s anti-choice laws, fining men for masturbation.

Arkansas teachers demand students know their real (Howard Zinn) History of the United States.

Maryland House of Delegates passes milestone anti-fracking bill banning hydraulic fracking statewide.

Army corps of engineers memo reveals agency is aware the DAPL encroaches on Indian land.

Water protectors’ fight not over. Tipis pitched in sight of the White House.

New database and hotline to track hate crimes nationwide.

China State Council Information Office releases a human rights report on the United States. “Wielding the baton of human rights, the U.S. pointed fingers and cast blame on the human rights situation of many countries while paying no attention to its own terrible human rights problems.”

 And the Not So Good News…

Tokyo Olympics Must Go On No Matter What

(published the 2,192nd day following the  nuclear meltdowns at Fukushima Daiichi)

Early in 2013, PM Shinzo Abe stated to the International Olympic Committee that the  contaminated water problem at  Fukushima was totally under control, aware that if Japan was not capable of settling its contaminated water problems, it should not be permitted to host the 2020 Olympics. Somewhat later he admitted that his remarks were intended to relax the atmosphere of national anguish following the Fukushima catastrophe of March 11, 2011 where massive reactor explosions occurred, including one suggesting  its criticality had spewed radiological debris over much of northeastern Japan. Fukushima is located 150 miles north of Tokyo.

PM Shinzo Abe as Super Mario-at Rio 2016 Olympics closing ceremony
As of today radiation levels are at the highest level since 2011, the three core meltdowns cannot be remediated, nor can their level of radioactivity be measured because all robots designed to probe the wreckage burn out within two hours. Today SimplyInfo reported on a secret plan to tunnel under the reactors to remove the melted fuel.  No one knows exactly where the corium has settled, whether or not it has breached containment vessels, and if so, have radioactive plumes begun seeping into underground soils and water surrounding Fukushima.  Although fuel cores have been removed from the ceiling-located cooling pools of reactor 4, they cannot be removed from structurally damaged reactor buildings 1, 2, and 3 because radioactive levels are too high to permit approaching them. “Fuel rods are essentially time bombs of radioactivity,” writes Robert Hunziker in the World Financial Review.

On the hill behind the ruined plants, 85 thousand tons of irradiated water sit, waiting for the next major earthquake. At sea level, the flow of contaminated water continues to treat the Pacific like an open sewer. Forests in the Fukushima area are and will always remain contaminated. Roads in the area are posted with electronic signs announcing radiation levels. Road advisories report wind directions, suggesting that contamination may require motorists to turn off their fans and roll their windows up.

As late as December 2014, radioactive iodine-131 and tellurium-132 were detected 130 miles away from Fukushima, evidence that radioactive particles may still be traveling in areas far distant from Fukushima.

Nonetheless, because the government has suspended all living stipends to its 160,000 evacuees, leaving them without economic resources, they are being forced to return to live in contaminated areas. This in the face of constructing a new Olympic stadium at the cost of 153 billion yen, or $1.26 billion dollars. And the truth of Fukushima cannot be spoken aloud without incurring punitive consequences mandated by Act. No. 108 of 2013, the Protection of Specially Designated Secrets..

Future shaky

In order to deliver on their promise that the Japanese 2020 Olympics will be the most enviro-friendly games ever, the organizers are confronting both the potentiality of cyber attacks (the U,S. under the aegis of the NSA is running Japan’s cybersecurity), and the very real danger of a catastrophic earthquake.

Former Japanese ambassador to Switzerland, Mitsuhei Murata, wrote a letter to Dr. Thomas Bach, President of the International Olympic Committee stating that he believes the games should be cancelled and the preparations abandoned because of the worsening situation in Fukushima, which is being downplayed by the Japanese Government.

Against this background, the Government of Japan has every intention of going forward despite the objections of both Murata, and former PM Koisumi, , despite the French criminal investigation into illegal payments by the Japanese of $2 million to the company at the center of the athletics corruption scandal immediately before and after the Japanese won the games, and despite the debt of the Government of Japan, which stands at 245% of GDP, reaching a ceiling which may cause dramatic inflation coinciding with the start of the games, making prices prohibitive enough to discourage attendance.

Tokyo organizers want to hold soft ball and baseball games in the  prefecture of Fukushima, while rowing and canoeing could take place in Mayagi prefecture, both areas hit hardest by the 2011 disaster. Despite safety reassurances, Germany has refused to participate.

If the Japanese official relationship to reality resembles that of the United States, it’s no surprise.  Japan is a client state of the United States, part of the array of allies the U.S. depends on for its Pacific Pivot. Cancellation would make the U.S. nuclear industry, already economically limping, look even sadder. The games will proceed no matter what, but divergence between the expertise of those actually doing the decommission planning and those who have a stake in comforting public relations is glaringly obvious.

I am indebted to John Bertucchi and Roger Herried for help with research for this article.

Sunday, March 5, 2017

And Now for the Good News


If you still bank at any one of the seventeen banks invested in the Dakota Access Pipeline, now is the time to divest by withdrawing your money, writing a letter of explanation to your bank manager, and opening an account in a credit union, which is less likely to fail if/when there is a run on the banks. 

If you have already switched, the action for this week is to contact as many friends as you can to let them know why depositing with any one of these 17 banks contributes to environmental and cultural degradation.

Pipeline Protesters shut down Citizen's Bank

 AND NOW FOR THE GOOD NEWS (Brought to you by the Resistance)

•100 water protectors elect to face arrest rather than surrender on Lakota land ceded by the US in the Treaty of Ft. Laramie.

•Lakota Sioux vow to fight the DAPL in court.


•Rep. Hank Johnson re-introduced the Berta Caceres Human Rights Act
calling for suspension of US military and police aid to Honduras  until the perpetrators are brought to justice.

•The European Parliament issued a resolution urging the Government of Nicaragua to guarantee the safety of Francisca Ramirez, and other peasant human rights activists for opposing construction of the great Nicaraguan canal.

•Family of migrant killed by border patrol wins settlement despite agents never being charged.

Arizona kills bill that would have classified protesters as terrorists.

• Supreme Court delivers a major victory for opponents of gerrymandering.

Hancock drone resisters ruled innocent of all charges in an unusual case.

California court rules against Monsanto, allowing California to affix cancer warning on Roundup.

Sara Beltan compassion released Amnesty announces.

•Public Leadership Institute announces that elected officials in 18 states (including California) are all introducing legislation to protect or expand abortion access.

Strikes as passive resistance: Brooklyn Yemeni bodega owners, NYC taxi drivers, A Day Without Immigrants, and March 8 Day Without a Woman are all effective examples of passive resistance.

Interactive Map -

•New American Economy map shows contribution of immigrants to the economy
in 435 congressional districts, and the 55 largest metro areas.

•S.F. Board of Supervisors passes resolution directing local law enforcement not to cooperate or comply with any attempt by the Trump administration to have people deported.

•Gov. Jay Inslee of Washington State mandates that state agencies and law enforcement not assist the federal government with civil immigration law enforcement, pointing out that protecting the state’s immigrants will also save Washington’s economy.

•Pranksy Banksy establishes Walled Off Hotel overlooking the separation Wall.
If you need to stay in Israel, here’s your ticket.