Category: News & Media

The Hibernation is Over – Let Spring Begin!

RISE UP!

You are change makers. Chain breakers. Each of you a revolution and a hurricane. 

RISE UP!

May 1st is International Worker’s Day!  Join fellow members of your community, your city, in solidarity, in celebration, in outrage.  No shopping!  No work!  No school!  No banking!  It’s time to take back the right to strike!

It is with great pleasure that the Victoria May Day Committee presents to you May Day 2012General Strike and Day of Imagining.

April 30th: 6pm  Mile Zero Camp, Beacon Hill Park (Douglas and Dallas)

Bring tent.
S.O.S. On To Ottawa will be walking across Canada this summer to amass a force of change-makers to descend upon Parliament Hill in September, bringing the stories, the suffering, the oppression of Canadians across the country to its root.  Walkers beginning their journey from Victoria will camp out at Mile Zero (Beacon Hill Park).

May 1st: 2 am-10am  Dance Dance REVOLUTION, legislature lawn

(https://www.facebook.com/events/205319869580230/)

If I can’t dance, I don’t want to be part of your revolution!
Kick off your May Day celebrating in style. On the night of April 30th, the morning of May 1st, DANCE!  Take back legislature lawn with a dance party, complete with art installations, a moving sound system, breakfast (7am) and some bumpin’ tunage.
Important: Bring your bike! 

May 1st:  11am-6pm  Day of Imagining, Centennial Square  (www.vmdc.ca)

Free Skool!
Children’s Bubble Brigade!
Creation Station!
Music!
Food!
Gift Circle!
Seed Exchange!
4 pm Workers Solidarity March!
On May 1st, Centennial Square will be transformed into a space for you to gather, with members of your city and your community to imagine and create a better world.  
Come out for a day of workshopsfood and celebration. Stay out with us.
Bring tent.

Class War and the College Crisis: The “Crisis of Democracy” and the Attack on Education

POSTED BY  ⋅ 
The following is the first part of a series of articles, “Class War and the College Crisis.”

By: Andrew Gavin Marshall

Part 2: The Purpose of Education: Social Uplift or Social Control?

Part 3: Of Prophets, Power, and the Purpose of Intellectuals

Part 4: Student Strikes, Debt Domination, and Class War in Canada

http://occupytheory.org/read/canada-s-economic-collapse-and-social-crisis-class-war-and-the-college-crisis-part-5.html

Today, we are witnessing an emerging massive global revolt, led primarily be the educated and unemployed youth of the world, against the institutionalized and established powers which seek to deprive them of a future worth living. In Chile over the past year, a massive student movement and strike has become a powerful force in the country against the increasingly privatized educational system (serving as a model for the rest of the world) with the support of the vast majority of the population; in Quebec, Canada, a student strike has brought hundreds of thousands of youth into the streets to protest against the doubling of tuition fees; students and others are on strike in Spain against austerity measures; protests led by or with heavy participation of the youth in the U.K., Greece, Portugal, France, and in the United States (such as with the Occupy Movement) are developing and growing, struggling against austerity measures, overt corruption by the capitalist class, and government collusion with bankers and corporations. Students and youth led the uprisings in Tunisia and Egypt last year which led to the overthrow of the dictators which had ruled those nations for decades.

All around the world, increasingly, the youth are taking to the streets, protesting, agitating, and striking against the abuses of power, the failures of government, the excesses of greed, plundering and poverty. The educated youth in particular are playing an active role, a role which will be increasing dramatically over the coming year and years. The educated youth are graduating into a jobless market with immense debt and few opportunities. Now, just as several decades ago, the youth are turning back to activism. What happened in the intervening period to derail the activism that had been so widespread in the 1960s? How did our educational system get to its present state? What do these implications have for the present and future?

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CAN YOU TRUST THE CORPORATE MEDIA ? A ‘PAYDAY-LOAN’ STORY

23% interest ???  In late March, CFAX Radio in Victoria covered a ‘Payday-Loan’ story.  The story included information that Payday Companies could charge $23.00 on a loan of $100.00.  I asked a friend about ‘the interest rate’ on that loan, $23 for $100 borrowed, and he said 23%.
But it’s really 599%:  What CFAX Didn’t Report was that payday loan companies can charge $23 for lending $100 for TWO WEEKS, not for a year.  Paying $23 to borrow $100 for two weeks is 599% interest a year.  In fact, this information is posted at my local Money-Mart: the poster says they charge you $23 to borrow $100 for two weeks, and the poster says this is 599% a year.
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Divest from Companies that Profit from the Israeli Occupation.

In a few weeks, the United Methodist Church will make a crucial vote on whether to divest from companies that profit from the Israeli occupation. A few months later, the Presbyterian Church-USA will vote on the same issue as well.

Click here to visit the RabbisLetter.org website and watch the video of support for divestment.

These churches, and the people of faith behind these initiatives, are already being viciously attacked for saying what many of us have been saying all along: that the Israeli settlements in the West Bank and East Jerusalem must go and that the Israeli occupation must end because a true foundation for peace between Israelis and Palestinians can only be based on justice and equality for all.They are taking a stand, with their own resources fueled by their faith—and so must we.

That is why a number of rabbis from Jewish Voice for Peace’s Rabbinical Council got together and wrote an open letter—and we even made a video—expressing our support for these churches.

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Harper & Flaherty use Canada Revenue Agency to Attack Charity Status of Environmental Groups crying foul & Opposing Oilsands never ‘a charitable act,’ senator Doug Finley says

The Harper government’s budget tossed roses to Western Canada’s natural resource-based economy on Thursday and lobbed a political grenade at the environmental movement.

Finance Minister Jim Flaherty announced a long-promised blueprint to streamline the environmental review process, but a starkly different message was sent to environmental groups that are waging an intense battle against the oilsands sector.

The budget commits $8 million over the next two years to help the Canadian Revenue Agency target registered charities that the government believes are too overtly political.

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How to write powerful letters to your elected representatives

see How To video below

Johnson Street Bridge Price Tag Jumps Up by $15 Million – Surprise, Surprise! – See City’s “Refined” Cost Projections
Email councillors@victoria.ca or drop a hand written letter in person to City Hall
Urge the Mayor and City Counsellors not to go with an expensive experimental design when tested “tried and true” design proposals exist and are cheaper, more functional and have the least possibility of cost overruns.

Counsellor Ben Isitt also needs support in his motions for the repeal or amendment of discriminatory City bylaws against people who are homeless and a discussion for a temporary regulated tenting area to replace the current ad-hoc form of camping that takes place in many City parks.

Enbridge Letter Writing Campaigns
http://gatewaypanel.review-examen.gc.ca/clf-nsi/prtcptngprcss/lttrfcmmnt-eng.html
http://www.leadnow.ca/canadas-interests

Omar Ahmad: Political change with pen and paper

This 6 minute video will give some psychological and strategic insight into writing letters to your local politicians and by extension how to personalize a letter writing campaign.

 

Saving the Old-Growth

Photo Credit: TJ Watt, AFA

According to Victoria’s Ancient Forest Alliance, the logging company, Island Timberlands, has postponed their logging plans on Cortes Island for six months. Citizens of Cortes Island, Vancouver Island, British Columbia, and the world have become more and more concerned as the company’s plans to log some of the last remaining Old Growth Forest becomes increasingly apparent. Wildstands, a community alliance on Cortes Island, have been fighting the impending logging for several years, with many other environmental and activist groups working in solidarity with them. Over the weekend, Occupy Nanaimo, Occupy Powell River, and Occupy Vancouver successfully occupied Brookfield Asset Management, the corporation that not only owns Island Timberlands, but also Zuccotti Park where Occupy Wall Street’s occupation took place. This connection has allowed the issue of Cortes Island logging to go global with solidarity actions taking place in New York and London, England, and a petition being circulated and signed all around the world. The ongoing pressure faced by Island Timberlands seems to have worked for the time being. Now, it is towards filling the next six months with pressure on the government to protect BC’s remaining Old Growth Forests and to protect BC jobs in the logging industry (can we mill our own wood? YES WE CAN! Can we use our own wood? YES WE CAN! can we afford to export raw logs? NO WAY!).

To learn more about the logging and actions against on Cortes Island, visit the Wildstands website: http://wildstands.wordpress.com/

To learn more about the Ancient Forest Alliance visit their website at http://www.ancientforestalliance.org/ and check out their 2 year anniversary event where Andy MacKinnon, renowned BC forest ecologist, botanist, and author of “Plants of Coastal BC”, will give a fun presentation: “Wild, Wonderful, and Weird Facts about BC’s Coastal Forests” slideshow!
When: Monday, February 27th, 7:30-9:30 p.m.
Where: the Norway House, 1110 Hillside Avenue (between Graham and Prior St.), Victoria

Well, at least we don’t live in Cuba right??

When asked about the biggest income gap between the top and bottom 20 per cent in Canada BC Minister of Finance Kevin Falcon says.. “in Cuba they don’t have any income inequality because they’re all poor”. So what is the Minister saying here? Should the lower 20% should be thankful that we even have an upper 20%? Decide for yourself and let your voice be heard!

He gave no apologies about the findings in this new report, the truth is that B.C.’s income gap has been growing for 15 years, and only Alberta has more after-tax income inequality than we do.

If this is the response from our elected leaders then we should be very concerned indeed. Let’s educate Mr. Falcon on the real issues at hand and what this report means to us.

Tell Mr Falcon what you think about his latest snuff to the poorest people in BC.
Email: http://www.leg.bc.ca/mla/39thparl/falconK.htm
Twitter: https://twitter.com/kevinfalcon
Youtube.com (Liberal Party of BC): http://www.youtube.com/BCGovCaucus
Facebook (Tell his Boss! Christy Clark) http://www.facebook.com/ChristyClarkForBC

Contact your MLA and let them know how you feel about the growing income gap between rich and poor here in BC:
http://www.leg.bc.ca/mla/3-1-1.htm

Compared to other provinces, BC ranked dead last in 2009, with the largest gap between the top 20% and the bottom 20% of income earners.

Occupy Victoria pops up at UVic

About seven students slept on campus overnight on Jan. 29. As of Monday, four people remained on the lawn in front of the McPherson library and were being monitored by security. “There are groups who wish to express diverse opinions and we promote that, as long as it’s done in a respectful manner,” said UVic spokesperson Patty Pitts.

Full article: http://www.oakbaynews.com/news/138421049.html

Harm-Reduction Campaign Update

Mid-December’s “War on Drugs is a War on the Poor” Campaign Launch was a success. Speakers from SOLID, Allies of Drug War Survivors (formerly Harm Reduction Victoria), and the Beddow Center offered some history and context for the campaign, emphasizing local Victoria-based harm-reduction struggles with the Corporation of the City of Victoria, the Vancouver Island Health Authority (VIHA), and the Victoria Police (VPD).

The campaign has several avenues to change including encouraging opposition to Harper’s Omnibus Crime Bill, taking action to counter disturbing results about policing in Victoria that were found in a recent VIPIRG peer-run study (report found here), and planning an ‘Activism and Advocacy Skills-building Convergence’ by and for people who use drugs right here in Victoria.

The aim of the convergence is to ensure people who use drugs have the resources they need to demand long-overdue supervised consumption services, and inclusion in the process of designing and delivering these services, in Victoria.

READY TO GET INVOLVED WITH THIS CAMPAIGN!? Send an email to alliesdws@gmail.com with one or more of the following groups in the subject line:

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