Cascadia Forest Defenders

The Cascadia Forest Defenders have been blockading the White Castle Timber sale via tree sits to stop the destruction of remaining old growth forests in southern Oregon. They are looking for support, and will provide what they can for people who come out such as food, training and gear. I hitch hiked to Eugene in August where I met up with some of them and learned a bit about tree climbing before we went to the sit.

According to their call to action, “The White Castle timber sale is the first of a new type of clearcut – a Variable Retention Harvest. Variable Retention Harvests cut 70% of a forest leaving the remaining 30% in little scattered patches. The science, developed by Drs. Norm Johnson and Jerry Franklin, is that there is not enough young forest around for species that need more meadow-like habitat, like butterflies and moths.”

For more information please check: or write

Squat life – some words and picutres from fava bean haus

When I first moved to Oakland a few years back, I picked up a Slingshot and read an article about the (now evicted) Hellarity House that piqued my interest in squatting, and started me down the road to becoming a squatter myself. So when I ran into a Slingshot photographer snapping squat pictures in West Oakland last month, I invited her and fellow photographer Brooke to The Fava Bean House. Part of me wanted wanted to show off the chaotic, living canvas that the walls of our house have become. But I’m also motivated by defiance: the suits and ties want to kick us onto the curb, board up our windows, and paint over our walls. After years of harassment, they’re still trying. These photos, then, are a testament to our refusal: we’re still here, the walls are still our canvas, and the garden is still hooking us up with fresh greens.

Like most squats, there’s been a lot of turnover here. The Cops and The Suits turn the pressure up, and a lot of people make the choice to leave. Some days I reach a point of exhaustion, feeling unsupported. The bucket overflows on the kitchen floor, and I think, “Well, should I even clean it up if we’re getting evicted tomorrow?” But when new people come, they bring fresh energy with them. I show people around for the first time and they’re excited when they see the garden and the art, and take an interest in the history of the space. People start taking initiative, fixing things up, improving our infrastructure and those are the days that make all the uncertainty worth it.

Solidarity and complicity with all of the squats around the world facing repression right now. Lets keep it creative and uncontrollable.

The capitalists leave space empty and call it an asset… We’ll call it an opportunity!

Disneyland is safe: system scrmbles to contain Anaheim uprising

July 21, 2012. Police observe three men in a car. These men appear “suspicious” to police. When the police approach the men, they flee. The police chase after one man in particular, Manuel Angel Diaz. The chase ends when the police shoot the man in the back of the head. The man dies. He is 25 years old.

What is notable is not the fact of the police execution, unfortunately: police murder is an all-too-common event in communities of color. But the quickness of local residents’ reaction against the police — the manifestation of area residents’ aversion to the police, their utter distrust and hostility — is exemplary. Within hours, local residents gather; some throw rocks and bottles at police. Police shoot the crowd with bean bags and pepper balls, and release a canine on a mother and her child. The police reaction to the crowd is not surprising. The only hope is that area residents respond in kind. And they do. Helicopters shine spotlights on the crowds that remain in the streets. Small groups of people light dumpsters on fire.

July 22, 2012. A “gang officer” spots a “recognized gang member” in a stolen vehicle. The officers pursue the individual. Shots are exchanged, allegedly. The police kill 21-year-old Joel Acevedo. A handgun is found near the dead man, according to police.

The man who runs is shot in the back. The man who shoots back is also killed. The only certainty is death at the hands of the police.

The counter-insurgency mobilizes. By way of media accounts, the police murders become “incident[s].” Local government bureaucrats and ‘community leaders’ call for “investigations.” Investigations by the police, the district attorney, the FBI. The “truth” must be discerned. Media figures attempt to understand and explain the phenomena that took place in the streets. The police attempt to de-legitimize the uprising as the product of “outsiders” to the “community.” But the attempt fails when the police’s own statistics reveal that the arrestees from Saturday night were overwhelmingly from Anaheim. Making the necessary adjustments, the police identify the uprisings as the product of “gang members.” It is now the status of “gang member” that the police ascribe to any person whom is dealt state violence.

Meanwhile, the police prepare for war. The Anaheim Police Association publicly justifies the police murders. In response to the murmurs of uprising, the police increase their street patrols: “‘We have more officers on the street to preserve the peace,’ Anaheim police Chief John Welter said” according to the Orange County Register.

July 24, 2012. Hundreds converge at City Hall. City leaders abort the meeting when protests outside turn “violent.” Hundreds of protesters take the streets. They light dumpsters on fire and smash the windows of businesses. They throw bricks and even Molotovs at police. Police attack the unruly crowd with batons, rubber bullets, and pepper balls. The crowd refuses to disperse.

July 25, 2012. Manuel Diaz’s mother calls for a “peaceful justice” “within the law” to avenge her son’s death. But, with all due respect, this is an impossibility: the police murder within the law, and therefore by definition police cannot commit murder; they are immune, because in a very real sense, they are the law. “Guilt” and “innocence” are but two faces of the same coin. What’s at issue is who has the license of the State to kill. Those executed by police are, by necessity, guilty.

Concerned liberals set to work to figure out what went wrong — how could the crowd’s violence have been averted; how can the city reform its police so as to avoid widespread antipathy by the policed? Racists salivate at the idea of the State’s brute repression of brown people. The non-profits and community organizations attempt to intervene in the conflict: as the “representatives” of the community harboring the unruly crowd, they are valuable to the City in that they are entities the City can negotiate with and that communicate the (alleged) desires of the unruly crowd in a language the City understands. “Tourism officials” assure “tourists” that the uprisings are isolated occurrences — Disneyland is safe.

July 29, 2012. What is striking is not necessarily the police’s preparedness for war, but rather their obvious neglect to obscure their role as a counter-insurgency force. Thus, instead of donning the traditional riot uniform and the baton, the police wear military fatigues and are armed with rifles and less-than-lethal weapons that closely resemble grenade launchers. The image conjured is not South Central Los Angeles, 1992, but Afghanistan, 2012. Not urban riot, but urban insurgency. And next to the commando, there is the atavistic mounted police, reference to a past form of brute repression. In the shadow of the Happiest Place on Earth, we see that the police are not merely tasked with disciplining populations, but also with annihilating those who refuse to subordinate themselves to the State. Viewed with this lens, the police assassination of Emanuel Diaz was not an aberration, but the elimination of a body that would not submit to law — an entirely rational act within the logic of modern policing.

The Orange County Register vigorously extends the counter-insurgency operation, discovering that the outside-agitator narrative is appropriate for the situation. The headline for July 30, 2012, reads: “Most unruly protesters from outside Anaheim, police say: Seven of nine people arrested during Sunday’s demonstrations outside police headquarters live outside city limits.” “[M]any of those obscuring their faces with bandanas and carrying gas masks were not from Anaheim.” Those who come prepared to fight the police, and those who cannot be driven out by the violence of the police are discursively expelled from ‘the community.’ They are “from elsewhere.”

Ever adept, power understood the ineffectiveness of its calls for ‘dialogue’ after the “unruly” communicated their hatred of that-which-is in a cacophony of broken glass and burning dumpsters. Adjusting to Sunday’s events, power sanctified the ‘silent’ protesters who police themselves.

July 31, 2012. In the wake of the uprisings, power again attempts to blunt the active struggle through “dialogue.” The mayor of Anaheim visits the site of Diaz’s murder and “listens” to the concerns of area residents. Liberal-progressive groups demand more Latino representation on the city council. The slogan “Our Voices Count” sums up the counter-insurgency effort: creating channels for communicating with power, on the one hand, and directing the destructive popular rage into a quantitative dimension. The city council, in turn, convenes a special meeting to hear residents’ concerns: “City leaders recognize that there is a need for additional community dialogue and discussion.” “Members of the Anaheim community are invited to come and present their thoughts, ideas and recommendations on ways to help improve the city and its relationship with its people, their neighborhoods and their government.” How can we police you more effectively, power asks? Such is the nature of “constructive dialogue” between the police and policed, only to be surpassed by the question asked by the person colonized by power: how can we police ourselves?

And indeed there is a need to communicate — but only with each other, not them. And the communication called for is not of the sort mediated through the pages of the press or the councils of governing bodies. Communication takes the form of attack against mutual enemies. The bricks thrown at Anaheim police find their solidaric counterpart in the shattered windows of the police bar in downtown Oakland.

Rape in Prison

Dostoyevski said “The degree of civilization in a sociey can be judged by entering its prisons”.

In a couple of more months we will enter the year 2000. Everyone is expecting or hoping for some kind of change in universal awareness. What I hope to change is society’s ignorance concering rape inside of prisons.

This type of rape is largely unknown or overlooked by thr general public. Most government, state and prison officials that are in authority to do something about it either approach it with a lack of emotional responce, or ignore it in hopes that it will go away, therefore leaving the problem unsolved. It then continues and increases and becomes more (rigid.) (entrenched?)

The exact number of rapes in the prison system is unknown due to most not being reported because of great fear of retaliation. The number is believed to be very high.

Rapes are done by other prisoners as well as the guards hired to watch over the prisoners. It is accomplished by use of physical force, verbal threats or promises of rewards. Threats and rewards that would br viewed as petty or taken for granted (not taken seriously?) by those in the free world.

Prisoners have been arrested, tried, convicted and sentenced for a crime that was committed, then sent to prison as punishment. Not sent to prison to become another victim in the world. Even though some people may think that the prisoner deserves whar s/he gets. As Martin Luther King, Jr. once said, “Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere”.

A group of French women made a statement against rape at the International Tribunal on Crimes Against Women in 1976, “Legally, rape is recognized as a crime with physical aspects only; namely the penetration of the vagina by the penis against the will of the victim. In effect, however, the real crime is the annihilation