May Day's ancient origin as a celebration of the earth's fecundity and the beginning of summer and its modern incarnation as an international worker's day may not seem to have much in common. But they are linked by the rise of industrial capitalism, which has on the one hand uprooted masses of people from the land and its cycles and sustenance, and on the other forced most people to depend on an alienating system of wages, rents, interest and profits that benefits a relative few. 53:31 minutes (49 MB)
Native Americans have been calling for the end to the use of racist stereotypes and sports mascots for decades, with some slow and steady progress. Many schools have retired their Native mascots, and laws (as in Oregon) have been passed banning them. Yet powerful franchises like the Washington Redskins, Atlanta Braves and Cleveland Indians have firmly resisted any change or recognition that anything is wrong with their team names and mascots. 55:17 minutes (50.62 MB)
Monday is Memorial Day, the holiday celebrating U.S. Army veterans who died while serving their country’s wars. And today Oregon’s Bureau of Labor and Industries announced that the Multnomah County Sheriff’s Office violated a law protecting preference for veterans in its hiring process. The law, enacted in 2007, applies to all governmental bodies in Oregon. It states that all veterans who meet the minimum qualifications must be given special considerations for civil service positions. Sergeant Rod Edwards unsuccessfully applied for a promotion, and filed a complaint with the bureau as a result. 4:29 minutes (4.1 MB)
The office of the now-defunct Columbia River Crossing Bridge is closing its office for good next week. Oregon and Washington have spent a total of two hundred million dollars on the project –about half of which came from federal matching funds. The new I-5 bridge was expected to cost around four billion dollars, but was eventually shut down due to a lack of legislative support – mainly from the Washington side. Opponents of the planned bridge, including environmental groups and neighbors of the site, have stated that alternative bridge options that were ignored previously may now have a chance to be explored. 13:36 minutes (12.44 MB)
According to the Portland Tribune, Reed College announced during commencement ceremonies this morning that they are following Stanford’s lead and divesting from fossil fuel companies.
According to Reed College spokesman Kevin Meyers, this was a spoof.
Given that the commencement speaker was Igor Vamos of the Yes Men, smart money is on the spoof.
KBOO’s Jimmy Tardy was on the scene and captured this audio of Mr Vamos. 3:23 minutes (3.1 MB)
On the heels of Tuesday's local initiative victories against GMO crops and the day before this year's March on Monsanto, host Paul Roland looks at the building grassroots movement for GMO-free food and against corporate behemoths Monsanto and others who are pushing genetic modification and trying to block citizen initiatives Guests will include:
59:26 minutes (54.42 MB)
Tom Becker hosts this episode, which includes a discussion of the fight for the $15/hour minimum wage in Portland and beyond, a report on economics students around the world demanding alternatives to failed neoclassical orthodoxies, a review of a memoir of life in the West, and a discussion of the use of Title IX to address sexual violence on college campuses.
Bill Resnick talks with organizer Justin Norton-Kertson about the campaign to raise the minimum wage to $15 per hour. They discuss the benefits of raising the floor for all workers and preserving social welfare spending for those unable to work, as well as the origins of the movement in Chicago, its victories in SeaTac and Seattle, and the relation between the national and local campaigns, both of which have excellent websites (https://www.15now.org/ and http://www.15nowpdx.org/). They discuss recent actions in Portland and the kinds of solidarity workers can show without risk to their jobs. 20:17 minutes (9.28 MB)