A Maypole on May Day

Join us at the MAY DAY RALLY in SYLVESTER PARK for:


Monday May 1st, 2006 2:30pm - before the Rally


No experience necessary Drummers welcome!

The wall and apartheid

There is an interesting report on the conference on Palistine held last weekend in Olympia. From The Arab American News:

Some 300 of the foremost experts and activists on Palestinian human rights gathered April 20-24 in Olympia, Washington, for a four-day event that aimed to educate and coordinate actions toward justice in Palestine.

The conference was organized by the Rachel Corrie Foundation, which was begun by Rachel's parents after she was crushed to death in March 2003 by an Israeli bulldozer while protecting the home of a Palestinian doctor. A lawsuit by the Corries which seeks an investigation by the U.S. government is still pending.


All of the facts missing from the mainstream media were on the tongues of the numerous eyewitnesses present, and in the careful analyses of experts - the likes of Hass and Barghouthi, the latter who recently ran for Palestinian president and is now a member of Parliament.


The Wall and Apartheid

Speakers were unanimous in depicting the present situation of Palestinians as a system of Apartheid. From the 30-foot Wall, twice the height of the Berlin Wall, to the existence of Jewish-only roads, to the stark contrast between basic services for illegal Jewish settlements to those for Palestinians. Water available to Palestinians to drink is considered unfit for corn crops in Canada. Sanctions against Palestinians have already been imposed by the Israelis, with their clear devastating effects illustrated here, and they have not led to security, peace or stability.

The Wall was designed in 1994 to plan for annexation of Palestinian territories, and included the uprooting of 1.3 million trees, mostly olive groves, the main source of livelihood for Palestinians. Today the wall is 750 kilometers long and creates a map of a "country" which makes no sense, unless you look at underground water supplies to see that Israel has systematically been taking the most valuable land for itself. In 90% of cases, the Wall separates Palestinians from Israelis in open-air prisons with gates that only Israel has the power to open or close.

Arts Walk Photos

At Arts Walk tonight The Illuminated Procession led a parade down 4th street to Capital Lake and set afloat a small raft full of wishes and good intentions.

They gathered at 9PM in front of Capital theatre and marched down the street picking up ArtsWalk attendees as they went. Police blocked traffic at Capital and 3rd.

At the water people paused as wishes and good intentions were written and put into a basket. The basket was then set afloat in the lake and then lit on fire. Small fireworks went off until the basket was burned.

Photos can be seen at www.justinvela.com

The Procession of the Species is tomorrow at 5 o'clock downtown.

McCleary Bear Festival Scandal

All this talk about the backroom politics of the Procession of the Species got me to thinking about the McCleary Bear Festival, which has taken place in our obscure hamlet since 1959. One consistent staple throughout the years has been the consuming of bear meat, either as a steak, or, as stew.

OK, it's a long story. Instead of trying to explain it, I suggest you go to Timberland Library and request the video I helped produce in 1996 called From They To We. You can also find it in the library at SPSCC. Why we celebrate the consumption of a fellow omnivore will be answered in this video.

Anway, back to the scandal. While interviewing oldtimers about the history of the Fest, we asked why the carnival (with rides) was absent for so many years. The answer we kept getting, but couldn't verify, was really fun but we were unable to use it on tape. In the early years, motorcycle gangs liked to gather here during the Fest. One year, they got into a rumble with the carnies. The motorcycle guys, according to the story, tipped over a portable outhouse when the head carnie was in it. The local Police Chief sided with the motorcycle guys and the carnies swore off this town for the better part of two decades as a result.

The only other Bear fest scandal I know of is that one year they allowed bear hair to get into the stew.

When The Olympian GETS IT WRONG!

Does it bother anyone but me that The Olympian cannot let go of this Eli Sterling thing? The pall and dark cloud that they keep referring to has been caused by their never ending obsession with the non facts. Did anyone read Mr. sterling's letter to the City of Olympia where The Olympian claims he apologized?? He NEVER did! And I quote "I am willing to acknowledge how my actions could be MISINTERPRETED by some in the community, although I maintain I had no malicious intent in those actions." further, "I am willing to take responsibility for the breakdown of communications in 2004, as far as the conflict that surfaced between the website entity, Earthbound Productions, and the City of Olympia." Please refer to Webster's and look up apology: 1. An expression of regret for having committed an error or rudeness., 2. a defense or justification of cause or doctrine, etc. Mr. Sterling acknowledged there was a misinterpretation and/or a breakdown of communications and he took responsibility for THAT. That's all no apology! Nor should he apologize. After all he was simply following the same procedure that had been used in many prior years by his organization and many others.

To me, it is mind boggling that all the reporters keep dwelling on this. Can't you people let it go? As recently as yesterday, April 27, Lisa Palmerton had to rehash the whole thing, as if nobody had every heard about it before. Now imagine this. A person is found guilty and charged with a felony. The person makes and apology. The person gets off? Since when does that exonerate them??? Not in the United States.

Hear this now, THE CASE IS OVER. Eli Sterling was EXONERATED! No charges are being filed!


Provide input on health of Puget Sound

What do you think about the environmental health of the Puget Sound basin? Your opinions are important and will help shape the recommendations to Governor Chris Gregoire.

Six general public forums will be held around the Sound in mid May. The first hour of the forums will be an Open House designed to acquaint people with the major environmental problems the Sound is facing. The second hour will be an interactive Town Hall meeting with members of the Puget Sound Partnership and environmental experts. The Partnership will use comments from the forums in its initial recommendations to the Governor on June 15.

The two nearest meetings:

May 16
The Pavilion at Sentry Park
190 West Sentry Drive, Shelton
5:30-7:30 p.m.

May 17
Landmark Convention Center
Temple Ballroom
47 St. Helens Avenue, Tacoma
5:30-7:30 p.m.

You can also take this survey.

Everybody's on board for water deal

Excet for Thurston County, which is pursuing a separate law suit. From The Olympian:

LACEY — The county’s three largest cities now have agreed to jointly buy the water rights of the former Miller brewery after the Lacey City Council signed off on the accord Thursday.

The council approved a settlement that will enable the cities to acquire all water rights owned by All American Bottled Water Corp. and pay $1,750 for every acre-foot of water that the state determines is valid.

In the same vote, the council authorized the cities to supply half of their newly acquired water to All American for its as-yet-unrealized business operation for 99 years. Under the agreement, All American can receive no more than 1.8 million gallons per day.

Prometheus Radio Project comes to Olympia

May 11th at 7pm the Prometheus Radio Project and PCUN (Pineros y Campesinos del Noroeste or Northwest Treeplanters and Farmworkers United) union organizers will be speaking in Lecture Hall One at the Evergreen State College.

They will be bringing tips about radio equipment, programming, and speaking about democratic media and recent station- building trips abroad. “This will also be a great opportunity to show support for the rights and dignity of the people who feed us all!

Let the Species Proceed

From thinkorganic.com:

Click image to play movie.

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