Mike's blog

Ocean Report

A couple of items on things oceanic came to my attention this week. NYT had a story on collapse of the cod fishery:

The Shocking News About Cod

The ideal fish for human consumption would mature quickly and

Courtesy Wiki Commons NOAA

reproduce in staggering numbers. This does not describe the Atlantic cod. Cod mature late — at 4 to 6 years old — and they can live as long as 25 years. Female cod do, in fact, produce astonishing numbers of eggs. But older cod lay two or three times as many eggs as younger cod. This means that a healthy cod population must include relatively large numbers of older fish.

For Op-Ed, follow @nytopinion and to hear from the editorial page editor, Andrew Rosenthal, follow @andyrNYT.

A recent survey of cod catches in Northern Europe shows exactly the opposite. Extrapolating from survey numbers, scientists at a British government fisheries agency estimate that there are nearly 200 million 1-year-old cod in the North Sea but only 18 million 3-year-olds. As for older cod, the numbers are shocking. The survey team estimates that in 2011 there were only 600 12- to 13-year-old cod, a third of which were caught, and not a single fish older than 13 has been caught in the past year.

Read the whole article? Important stuff.

No Minority, No Majority. There Shall Just Be People

Biko!

You are not forgotten.

Struggle. Resist. Live and Work for Justice.

No Justice for Rachel Today

Thanks to Drew Hendricks for sending a link and this sad news.

No justice for the Corrie family today at Court. Join us on Wednesday at 6:30 pm at Traditions Cafe 300 Fifth in Olympia for a videoconference call with Craig and Cindy. Rachel's Foundation is here. Information about the Traditions event on Wednesday night is here.

 

 

A demonstrator holds a poster depicting activist Rachel Corrie outside the Haifa district court, after the ruling in a civil case August 28, 2012. REUTERS-Amir Cohen

 

Live Video Conference Call with the Corries Post Verdict | The Rachel Corrie Foundation for Peace and Justice

Verdict in Rachel Corrie Lawsuit to be Announced August 28th – Family to Hold Press Conference in Haifa

This is a big deal in Olympia because so many of us are connected to the Corrie family. You are not forgotten, RachelRachel was a well-known Oly activist. She was loved, she is missed. Rachel's death in the occupied territories of Palestine welded the communities of Olympia and Rafah together

 

The verdict will be announced on the 28th in Haifa. On Wednesday, Aug 29th, we will have a video conference call with Craig and Cindy Corrie at Traditions Cafe at 6:30 pm. I hope that many of you will be able to join us at Traditions next Wednesday to support Craig and Cindy and to pay your respects to Rachel.

Politics and Entertainment? Why Not?

M & I are working on two campaigns for the regular election. The first is Thomas Bjorgen's run for the Court of Appeals. Tom would simply make a superb judge and I think it's going to happen. I am certainly going to work to make it happen.

The second campaign we are pounding on is the Thurston Public Power Initiative. This initiative will allow the existing Public Utility District to expand from water services to water and electricity. Thurston is the only county in SW Washington that does not have a public power option. We are going to fix that. This is a pretty simple matter of keeping electric rates low by allowing for competition.

A private banking company from Australia purchased Puget Sound Energy a few years ago. PSE is not a local company and the Macquarie Group that owns PSE took 17 million dollars out of Thurston County last year in profits. These profits were offset by the power outages that occurred in Thurston County last winter with the ice storm. I am on PUD power in Lewis County, my power never blinked. Some PSE customers in Thurston County were without power for a week or more. Some advocates for the PSE power monopoly think the solution is that homeowners buy generator sets for back up power.

Lots of us think the solution is local jobs trimming the trees and maintaining the lines, local power generation through a PUD that is rooted in the local community and has a commitment to local, sustainable power generation, and local accountability. The PUD commissioners get to face the voters on a regular basis. When do we get to vote on the management of the Macquarie Group or Goldman Sachs or other private financial institutions?

Public power or private profits? That is the choice.

 

Pud Power or PSE Macquarie Group Profits

Power for the people? or Power for Profit? That's the other regular election issue that I am really geared up to work on for the next few months.

We have a chance in Thurston County to assert local control through the ballot to establish local power, local accountability, and local jobs.

The Thurston Public Power Initiative is on the ballot. This a very simple measure that opens the door for competition for efficient power generation. The Macquarie Group PSE is pulling out all the stops to defeat the Initiative and it's easy to figure out why. I think the figure is 17 million dollars in profits that were take out of Thurston County last year and deposited in the coffers of the Australian banking giant - the Macquarie Group.

I notice that an R Castaneda was posting in the Daily Zero with a letter in favor of the The Macquarie Group PSE yesterday. Castaneda says he(?) lost power for one day last winter with the ice storm. and his recommendation to folks who lost power for many days is simple: buy a generator.

Who needs local jobs maintaining the lines, trimming the trees, restoring the power? Just ship the profits to a struggling international bank and buy a generator set.

I am not sure what to say about that, but I am not planning to buy a generator set.

Primary Election... Did we have one?

Turnout was low. I think it was first primary in August and maybe competing with the Olympics played a part as well, but anyway you look at it, the election turnout yesterday looks a little low. Secretary of State shows turnout at 22.1%.

I was at election night party for my friend, Thomas Bjorgen, who is running for the Court of Appeals, Division 2, Position 2. That election was a real scramble with six candidates traversing six counties to get the top two positions and advance to the regular election. Pam Loginsky did well in all six counties and was the top vote-getter overall. Thomas Bjorgen appears to be in second place and ready to take on congrats, Tom.  What's with that clean desk?Loginsky in the regular election. I think Loginsky worked hard for votes, she is a qualified candidate to be on the bench, and she is backed by some powerful folks who want her on the bench. In a six name race with five men opposing, I think she also was the beneficiary of WA gender politics. We like to elect women in this State.

I think there is some reason to believe that change may be available through simple gender choices in elections, but in this regular election match-up, I will be working for the election of Thomas Bjorgen. He will be a wonderful judge. Fair, considerate, beholden to none and inclined to uphold the law over and over and not play politics for any powerful interests... except ours, the electorate.

Austerity Politics v. Posterity Politics

Are we keynesians or would we prefer to be serfs?

It's an election year, soCourtesty Billy Hathorn Wiki Commons we get to weigh on this and other questions. I really think we need to be thinking about creative economics. Market-based economics that are sustainable, that create useful commons instead of quarterly profits, dividends and obscene bonuses. We all get to decide how to make that happen. As for me, I will be voting for posterity economics. Raise taxes and reinstate the steeply progressive tax rates that discourage bald-faced greed and encourage investment in useful infrastructure.

The State is a Condition

"The State is a condition, a certain relationship between human beings, a mode of behaviour; we destroy it by contracting other relationships, by behaving differently toward one another..."

Gustav Landauer

 

Have to pack and set up the Really Really Free Market in Olympia. Contracting other relationships, behaving differently toward one another? Can we really destroy the state by behaving differently?

If an Agent Comes Knocking...

Well, the news in Olympia is that the agents came knocking in the last few days.

Our free society has generally embraced the political freedom of aligning with either the Republican or the Democratic Party!

For those of us that find that range to be a little too tight, you can stray into the fringes of the Justice Party or the Green Party.

If you are drawn to politics beyond this range, you should expect to be surveilled, investigated, possibly indicted and maybe jailed for your politics.

True political freedom in the land of the free and the home of the brave has always been illusory.

There are some important considerations to consider if you have a hoody on your coat rack in the closet today. Claim and exercise your Constitutional rights.

Don't fall for lying schemes and conversational gambits such as "you know why I am here, don't you?"

"Let me come in and let's talk."

You may want to exercise your right to remain silent.

You may want to exercise your right to counsel.

I expect we will be having meetings to discuss the suppression of political thought, the continuing criminalization of poverty, the politics of oppression.

Sunday, July 29th at Sylvester Park at 2:30. See you there?

Here are a couple of online resources:

http://ccrjustice.org/files/CCR_If_An_Agent_Knocks.pdf

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