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#NoKXL Tar Sands Blockade Swarm & Lockdown Video

Oct. 15, 2012 – Winnsboro TX VIDEO of Tar Sands Blockade protesters swarming TransCanada Keystone XL destruction site.

“GLOBAL WARMING ISN’T A PREDICTION. IT IS HAPPENING.”
Excerpts from NYT article by NASA Climate Scientist James Hansen.

Game Over for the Climate

By JAMES HANSEN
Published: May 9, 2012

“If Canada proceeds, and we do nothing, it will be game over for the climate.

Canada’s tar sands, deposits of sand saturated with bitumen, contain twice the amount of carbon dioxide emitted by global oil use in our entire history. If we were to fully exploit this new oil source, and continue to burn our conventional oil, gas and coal supplies, concentrations of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere eventually would reach levels higher than in the Pliocene era, more than 2.5 million years ago, when sea level was at least 50 feet higher than it is now. That level of heat-trapping gases would assure that the disintegration of the ice sheets would accelerate out of control. Sea levels would rise and destroy coastal cities. Global temperatures would become intolerable. Twenty to 50 percent of the planet’s species would be driven to extinction. Civilization would be at risk.

That is the long-term outlook. But near-term, things will be bad enough. Over the next several decades, the Western United States and the semi-arid region from North Dakota to Texas will develop semi-permanent drought, with rain, when it does come, occurring in extreme events with heavy flooding. Economic losses would be incalculable. More and more of the Midwest would be a dust bowl. California’s Central Valley could no longer be irrigated. Food prices would rise to unprecedented levels.

If this sounds apocalyptic, it is.”

You can help! Join the Tar Sands Blockade. In person or online.  All donations go for actions and legal fees. Thank you for your support .

 

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BREAKING TarSandsBlockade “Police” climb up scaffolding LIVE STREAM

UPDATE 9:45PM – BREAKING VIDEO: “Police Officers” Use Ladder to Climb into Tree Blockade 

link

Two “police officers” climbed a timber scaffolding on a ladder to “chat” with our tree blockaders. When asked for identification they refused to identify themselves. There are two possible scenarios here:

A. Police officers are illegally refusing to identify themselves and provide badge numbers

B. Civilians are illegally impersonating a police officer and need to be arrestedCall the Wood County Sheriff Department NOW and demand some action be taken against these two unidentified individuals: 903-763-220
RT @KXLBlockade: BREAKING: Police officer climbs up timber scaffolding on a ladder! LIVE STREAM (9:45pm) http://t.co/0tg20aef #NoKXL

LIVE STREAM

http://tarsandsblockade.org/day13/

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The Spirit of Occupy Resolution Oct. 2012

 

Occupy Houston The 1st Day

RESOLUTION: THE SPIRIT OF OCCUPY HOUSTON – Oct. 2012

WHEREAS – the original call to Occupy was to literally occupy public space for redress of grievances against the corporate corruption of our democracy; a corruption so complete as to render any usual avenues of redress ineffective, and

WHEREAS – these physical occupations allowed a space for a diverse group of people to come together and create new social justice avenues as well as reignite existing ones, and

WHEREAS – those avenues for social justice included specifically but were not limited to, compelling Port of Houston CEO Alec Dreyer to resign by spotlighting his 2006, $100 million taypayer-financed debacle, the never used Bayport Cruise Terminal, speaking out and taking action against the City of Houston Feeding Ordinance that will severely curtail the sharing of food in public with those most in need, supporting Houston janitors in their struggle for a living wage, protecting our local and national environment by opposing the Keystone XL Pipeline, and

WHEREAS – Occupy Houston has stood and continues to stand with our brothers and sisters to demand:  an end to the racist prison industrial complex that preys disproportionately on minorities and all forms of racism, an end to the bigoted policies that prevent our GLBTQ sisters and brothers from receiving equal rights under the law and all forms of bigotry, an end to the denial of a woman’s right to sovereignty over her own body and all forms of sexism, an end to predatory lending that burdens our sisters and brothers seeking betterment through higher education and all forms criminal usury, an end to all violent means of resolving problems, from wars that line the pockets of Wall St. war-profiteers while maiming and killing innocent civilians and patriotic soldiers, wars that destroy our credibility as a nation and cause irreversible damage to our one home planet, to the violent oppression of peaceful protesters exercising their right to a public redress of grievances- this and so much more, the spirit of Occupy Houston will continue to demand and act upon, to create a more equitable world for 100% of the Earth’s inhabitants, and

WHEREAS – the Occupy Movement continues to capture the imagination of the 99% even after a nationwide crackdown ended the majority of Occupy encampments, and

WHEREAS – these manifestations of Occupy include such a wide scope of social justice activism, held in both public and private space, that the overarching “spirit of Occupy” can no longer be contained within a General Assembly, and

WHEREAS – In May 2012, Mayor Annise Parker, The City of Houston Volunteer Initiatives Program and Volunteer Houston awarded Occupy Houston with a certificate of appreciation for Occupy Houston’s outstanding volunteer work, and

WHEREAS – The certificate states verbatim: The City of Houston, Mayor’s Volunteer Houston Awards 2012, The City of Houston Volunteer Initiatives Program and Volunteer Houston commend Occupy Houston for Outstanding Volunteer Service, Honor and achievement through your service exemplifies good citizenship and improves the quality of life in our city, Given With Appreciation – signed Annise D. Parker, Mayor, City of Houston,

BE IT RESOLVED – that Occupy Houston is a leaderful group of individual activists and Occupy is an idea that will never die, and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED – that any and all nonviolent social, economic and environmental justice actions operate in “the spirit of Occupy Houston” and Occupy Houston will continue to inform the public and confront authority in all matters concerning the corporate corruption of our democracy using all peaceful and persuasive means available.

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BREAKING East TX TransCanada machinery advancing on Stop XL tree-sitters

Sept 24 right now in East Texas -  TransCanada machinery advancing on Stop Keystone XL tree-sitters.

“Tree-Thrashing heavy machinery is rapidly cutting its way toward our tree village. Eight people are on the tree platforms and have refused to come down until TransCanada stops construction on its dangerous Keystone XL tar sands pipeline.”
Details: Tar Sands Blockade

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Is Houston’s mayor playing chess with grassroots activists?

Photo by Burnell McCray

Report by Nick Cooper – Food Not Bombs recently received permission to share food in the downtown library plaza, though we never asked for it. Since everyone has the freedom to share food and messages of peace with their neighbors in public, requesting permission would have been redundant.

We sincerely thank the Mayor for her apparent acknowledgment that Food Not Bombs is a part of the solution to the problem of hunger in Houston. However, exempting Food Not Bombs also serves to reinforce the idea that the right to share food in public should be at the whim of whoever happens to be sitting in the Mayor’s office. The punitive nature of the law is the underlying problem, and granting exemptions doesn’t mitigate its chilling effect on volunteerism. The threat of harassment and $2,000 fines has caused volunteers to drop out, and the number of desperately hungry people coming to Food Not Bombs to double.

In addition to serving at the library, volunteers who participate in Food Not Bombs, like many other Houstonians, drive around the city distributing food and water to people in need wherever they may be found. This important and compassionate act remains criminalized. Granting Food Not Bombs permission to serve in a single location cannot and will not remedy this manufactured hunger crisis in the streets of Houston.
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Occupy Houston report: There has been a nationwide crackdown on grassroots efforts to feed the homeless. Houston proponents of the recent public feeding restrictions say it is to protect property rights, bring in needed tourist revenue, address health issues in regards to unregulated food preparation and coordinate services for the homeless more efficiently. Opponents cite favoritism to developers, co-opting public space, shuttling the homeless out-of-sight, restricting expressions of religion such as helping those in need, and suppressing attempts of the Occupy Movement to reoccupy encampments.
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Houston mayor Annise Parker initiated this highly unpopular anti-public feeding ordinance. The law went into effect on July 1, 2012. A diverse coalition of Houston groups and individuals have been working together to overturn this restrictive ordinance since it was first announced in March of this year. The coalition’s specific objection to the ordinance is the prohibition of sharing food with more than 5 people in need in public space without the City’s prior approval and then only in designated areas. Since March of 2012, grassroots advocates for the homeless have repeatedly spoken before City Council and gathered 34,000 signatures to get Food Sharing before the voters by the Nov. 2012 elections. Houston City Council rejected the petitions citing a deadline. For more information on the City of Houston’s feeding ordinance see Houston Keep Food Sharing Free fb,  Free to Give Houston and Occupy Houston web and fb.
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Sept.5 Tar Sands Blockade lockdown success!

SALTILLO, TEXAS – September 5, 2012, 7AM – Three landowner advocates and climate justice organizers have locked themselves to feller buncher machines used for clearing large trees in the path of the Keystone XL pipeline. Today’s action has halted work on a segment of TransCanada’s illegitimate pipeline outside of Saltillo, TX. As promised, Tar Sands Blockade’s rolling campaign of nonviolent civil disobedience pushes forward.

UPDATES HERE

***UPDATE – 11:00AM: WE WON All Law Enforcement Has Left the Scene!

Their civil parting words: “Whatever you do make sure everyone’s safe.”

WE WON! Guess they realized our brave Blockaders aren’t the real criminals! The few workers on site are filing out as well. We’ll be holding down the fort just to be sure!

***UPDATE – 10:45AM: Police Are Accusing Blockaders of Equipment Theft

Worst way to “steal” equipment EVER. Just sayin’…

***UPDATE – 9:30AM: 3 Hopkins Co. Sherrif’s Deputies Arrive on Scene more than 2 Hours after the Fact

Threats of criminal trespass charges are being discussed, but our brave Blockaders are holding strong!

***UPDATE – 9AM: 20 Workers Show Up, Are Turned Away from Site!

7 trucks with 20-25 workers showed up at the site to meet their Foreman only to be turned away. One truck with a ditch witch continued on to the easement. ALL truck plates were out of state plates including Oklahoma, Tennessee, and Pennsylvania. Local jobs anyone?

7AM – BREAKING! 3 Blockaders Locked to Equipment Halt Work at Another Keystone XL Site!

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BREAKING 4 locked to truck carrying Keystone XL pipeline –

UPDATES HERE http://tarsandsblockade.org/2nd-action/

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Will outside homeless experts ignore Houston’s anti-food sharing ordinance? Aug. 28 last day of COH Community Charrette on Homelessness

Photo by Burnell McCray

Houston’s Coalition for the Homelessness sponsored a 4 day charrette to raise concerns and find solutions for the homeless in Houston. The charrette featured homeless experts from outside of Houston. Sessions were held on Aug. 20, 21, 23 at the Harris County Department of Education, 6300 Irvington Blvd Houston TX. Tues. Aug. 28 from 10:00 am – noon will be the final report presentation. The public was invited to attend all four charrette sessions. Representatives from Houston Keep Food Sharing Free! attended. HKFSF is a diverse coalition of groups and individuals who are opposed to the recently passed City of Houston feeding ordinance. Their specific objection to the ordinance is the prohibition of sharing food with more than 5 people in need in public space without the City’s prior approval and then only in designated areas. Groups and individuals can be fined from $500 to $2000 for violating the feeding ordinance. Early in August City Council dismissed a 34,000 signature petition gathered by HKFSF to get Food Sharing before the voters in the upcoming Nov. election.

Background on feeding ordinance

Report back/recommendations to charrette panel from Keep Food Sharing Free and Food Not Bombs activist Nick Cooper

It is clear that the Continuum of Care has the ability to make recommendations and to make strong recommendations. It is essential that the recommendations include wording about the anti-food-sharing ordinance and the so-called civility ordinances. These are huge elephants in the room. I will explain some of the reasons why.

1) Though faith-based and activist volunteer groups sharing food with the homeless don’t require funding, their co-operation is necessary, and they have been alienated from this process. While various groups are excited to receive new levels of funding, we have been treated the  opposite — we are at risk of financial penalties of hundreds of thousands of dollars per week for our volunteer effort.

2) While much of the discussion here has focused on things that sound consensual – giving homeless better options — the civility ordinances and anti-food-sharing law are part of a different model. With threats of fines, incarceration, and literally the threat of a night-stick, homeless are being forced to move. They could be forced to move elsewhere, wherever, or they can be forced to go to a specific place.   It is not acceptable to end homelessness at the point of a police baton, but that is exactly what is already going on in Houston.

3) This is not merely a matter or messaging, in short, if the Continuum of Care is mandating an end to homelessness through punitive measures like the civility ordinance and the anti-food sharing law, no nice words can fix that.

4) The voices of these volunteers has been absent here for many reasons, first and foremost that we are volunteers and have other jobs.

5) While the idea of having a certification process makes sense for those receiving grant money, we need to go in the opposite direction. It is only the volunteer and faith based groups that provide for the folks who fall through the cracks of these solutions, and no matter how well you construct the solutions, there will be cracks. Unless we make some sort of stand, make some sort of recommendation about these oppressive laws, these essential groups will have not only been ignored and left out of the decision making process by the city but also by Corporation for Supportive Housing.

For these reasons and many more I could go into if I had longer to speak, it is essential that we adopt the following in any recommendations we make: “we support repealing the so-called ‘civility ordinances’ and anti-food-sharing law.”

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