News Briefs: Endorsements At a Glance | Best of Eugene Awards | Council Backs Exclusion Zone | Forest Panel Eyes Aerial Applications | Vote Now! Stop the Ringing | Eugeneans Join Rally For 'Sanity' | Parkas for Pakistan | Activist Alert | Lighten Up |
Slant: Short opinion pieces and rumor-chasing notes
Will Medical Pot Inspire?
Poll shows younger voters perked up by M74
Bozievich v. Rust
Developer, gravel and timber barons back right-winger
Squawk Sports and Shit:
The Anxiety of Arrival
It’s lonely and a bit scary at the top
Happening People: Bruce Klepinger
ENDORSEMENTS AT A GLANCE
Deadline for dropping ballots in one of the white boxes around town is 8 pm Tuesday, Nov. 2. Postmarks don’t count, so it’s best to mail ballots in by Thursday, Oct. 28. Below are our selected endorsements at a glance. See our full endorsements last week, and for races and issues not listed, please refer to your Voters’ Pamphlet. Most candidates have easily found websites.
Ron Wyden (D)
U.S. House, District 4.
Peter DeFazio (D)
U.S. House, District 5.
Kurt Schrader (D)
John Kitzhaber (D)
Ted Wheeler (D)
Senate District 4.
Floyd Prozanski (D)
Senate District 6.
Lee Beyer (D)
Senate District 7.
Chris Edwards (D)
House District 7.
Sara Byers (D)
House District 8.
Paul Holvey (D)
House District 10.
Jean Cowan (D)
House District 11.
Phil Barnhart (D)
House District 12.
Terry Beyer (D)
House District 13.
Nancy Nathanson (D)
House District 14.
Val Hoyle (D)
Veterans’ loans. Yes
Annual Legislature meetings. Yes
Lower interest loans. Yes
School money for prisons. No
Marijuana dispensaries. Yes
Corporate casino. No
Park funding. Yes
COUNTY CANDIDATES & ISSUES
West Lane Commissioner.
Springfield Measure 20-173.
Lane County Measure 20-174.
Lane County Measure 20-175.
Lane County Measure 20-176.
BEST OF EUGENE AWARDS
|Adventure Galley||Endr Won|
|Anna Gilbert||Jameson & The Sordid Seeds|
EW’s Best of Eugene Awards Show begins at 8 pm Friday, Oct. 29, at WOW Hall. Doors open at 7 and tickets are $8 at the door.
Mixed in with the annual Best of Eugene award presentations will be live performances by the top four finalists in EW’s Next Big Thing music contest: Adventure Galley, Endr Won, Anna Gilbert and Jameson & the Sordid Seeds. Each band or artist will perform three songs, “providing a mini-showcase of our finalists and their talents,” says Bill Shreve, EW’s director of sales and marketing.
The winner of the contest will be announced that evening, along with the lineup of the 16 top songs that will go on a CD to be released in November.
The winner of The Next Big Thing will get a $500 cash prize, as well as a recording session at Don Ross Productions, CD duplication services and paid gigs at Faerieworlds and other festivals and venues around the valley.
COUNCIL BACKS EXCLUSION ZONE
Eugene police and courts have used an exclusion zone law to kick the homeless out of downtown while not reducing crime, but the Eugene City Council appears likely to extend the controversial law.
The police and supporters of the “Downtown Public Safety Zone” claimed that the law would not target the homeless and would reduce crime when it was passed in 2008. But 58.5 percent of the people the police have excluded are homeless, and there was “no drop in criminal activity” in the downtown exclusion zone, according to the police department’s own report.
Despite targeting of the homeless and the lack of crime reduction, the City Council voted 5-3 Oct. 25 to pursue an 18-month extension of the law, subject to a final vote. Councilor Andrea Ortiz provided the key swing vote.
The Eugene Police Department (EPD) report did not note what percentage of people excluded were mentally ill. But national reports have shown that up to half of the homeless suffer from mental illness.
Councilor Alan Zelenka argued that the city should at least provide lawyers for the many poor people the city targets for exclusion. Councilor Mike Clark, however, opposed public defenders as too expensive.
Instead of public defenders, the city appears likely to buy more jail beds. Eugene Municipal Court Judge Wayne Allen said he’s looking forward to a pending city agreement to rent 10 jail beds from Springfield to help house those who violate the exclusion.
The ordinance allows Allen and other judges to impose exclusions on people without a lawyer and without a criminal conviction. Allen declined to say whether he thought the law was constitutional. The ACLU has opposed the exclusion law as a violation of due process.
Most of the decisions about whether to impose the exclusion law are made by police officers. The law gives police officers wide discretion. Eugene Police Chief Pete Kerns said officers chose to impose exclusions in less than one out of 10 cases where it applied. The police report showed that in at least six out of 10 of those cases when officers decide to use the exclusion law, they targeted the homeless. — Alan Pittman
FOREST PANEL EYES AERIAL APPLICATIONS
After six years of taking their case to Oregon state officials, members of the Pitchfork Rebellion were able to bring officials to them and the lands the group is trying to protect from pesticide sprays.
Oregon Board of Forestry members toured the Triangle Lake area on Highway 36 with members of the Pitchfork Rebellion. In an effort to show how the timber industry’s aerial spraying of pesticides affects the well-being of residents, agronomist Stuart Turner spoke about how pesticide drift works.
“Our focus should really be on how we keep pesticides in the target zone,” Turner said. According to Turner, the bulk of pesticide drift research is conducted on very flat land. When the same rules are applied to steep slopes like those in the Triangle Lake area, the air carrying pesticides moves differently than it does over flat land, making it unlikely that a study on flat land is an adequate model.
One of the stops on the tour, above a fish ladder on Lake Creek, exhibited a slope that Turner estimated at close to 70 degrees. The slope has a record of being aerially sprayed, likely resulting in pesticides reaching the creek.
“I don’t see an easy solution to this problem,” Turner said. “These are very unusual spray conditions here; we’ve got to have on-site research.” Turner said he would like to see a conclusive study on the effect of aerial release height on spray drift, especially in hilly geography. Both the physical slope of hillsides and the unique way that air drains through the Triangle Lake Forest affect the way pesticides can drift away from an intended target.
Day Owen, founder of the Pitchfork Rebellion, was pleased that the state officials were able to tour in person some of the sites of concern. “I am hoping that the Oregon Department of Forestry people were moved and will do something about it,” Owen said.
“I think that the board found the tour interesting and useful,” Dan Postrel, Board of Forestry spokesman, said. “This is an issue that’s on the board’s work plan and on their radar, and they’re continuing to work on it.” — Shannon Finnell
VOTE NOW! STOP THE RINGING
It’s not an “urban legend.” The sooner you vote, the sooner those phone calls from earnest campaign workers will stop.
According to Lane County Clerk, Cheryl Betschart, groups such as campaign workers can get updated “not voted lists” from the Lane County Elections office so they can limit their calls to those who have not yet turned in their ballots. Betschart says if you want to check the status of your ballot after you have turned it in or mailed it, you can click on “My Vote” at http://wkly.ws/vc
Being on the federal Do Not Call List, however, doesn’t stop the campaign calls. This is because such calls are exempted from the list as long as they are made by a real, live person. “The only type of political calls that are banned are robocalls,” says Tony Green, director of communications and policy for Oregon Department of Justice.
Robocalls became federally illegal thanks to the Do-Not-Call Improvement Act of 2007, and Oregon adopted the national registry as its own No Call List, authorizing the Department of Justice to enforce the law in state court.
But the law has some exemptions, including: informational notifications — school closures and medical appointments — charitable organizations, and public opinion polls and surveys. And politicians.
So the best way to stop the calls? Vote. — Camilla Mortensen
EUGENEANS JOIN RALLY FOR ‘SANITY’
As Daily Show Host Jon Stewart’s “Rally to Restore Sanity” approaches, Eugene locals are preparing to battle national insanity with their own version of the Washington, D.C. protest.
Thanks to a motivated group of local Stewart supporters unable to make it to the capitol, Eugene will host a local rally on Saturday, Oct. 30, in tandem with the national event.
“It’s time we come together to discuss the status of our government,” Jill Hollingsworth, co-organizer of Eugene’s rally, said. “I’m tired of watching officials constantly going at each others’ throats without solving anything. It’s a terrible example to our children and our society.”
Stewart, who announced the D.C. rally on Sept. 16, founded his event on similar complaints. On the rally's official website, Stewart invites “people who’ve been too busy to go to rallies, who actually have lives and families and jobs” who feel that “the loudest voices shouldn’t be the only ones that get heard.”
Eugene is among hundreds of cities worldwide, ranging from Tel Aviv, Israel, to Des Moines, Iowa, that will be hosting a local rally this weekend.
The Eugene event will start at Cozmic Pizza with an 8 am public discussion and breakfast, leading into a 9 am live televised viewing of the national rally. Hollingsworth stressed that her group is not advocating a march or street rally afterward. According to the local event’s Facebook page, 114 community members are planning to attend.
Although the event is partly inspired by Stewart’s satirical sense of humor, Hollingsworth said the local gathering, open to people across the political spectrum, will be more than just fun and games.
“We can all laugh about it, but there is a seriousness to the rally,” Hollingsworth said. “We’re trying to use humor to spark a discussion that could make real changes in our government.”
While local supporters convene this Saturday, other Eugene residents will be joining the estimated 220,000 national attendees on D.C.’s National Mall.
“I want to support a rally with a political message more palatable than any other coalition, like the Tea Party,” said Miguel Lopez, a UO senior flying to D.C. this Friday.
Lacey Becker, another UO student planning to attend, said that while she supports the rally, its popularity is a bad sign.
“We have more faith in these TV show hosts than the elected officials,” Becker said. “It says a lot about our country’s faith in government.”
Hollingsworth, echoing this concern, said that the rally’s comedic cornerstone might add to the event’s success.
“It’s laughable. It’s ridiculous. It’s the beauty of Jon Stewart. But it just could work,” Hollingsworth said. — Alex Zielinski
PARKAS FOR PAKISTAN
Oregonians tend to complain about the return of winter weather, but at least most of us have shelter, heat and a closet full of coats, scarves and hats. Winter is much different in Pakistan, where some 20 million people who survived massive flooding now face winter without even a decent coat. The UO is teaming up with St. Vincent de Paul Nov. 2-3 to collect outerwear, blankets and sleeping bags in a campaign called “Parkas for Pakistan.”
Donations will be collected from 9 am to 6 pm Tuesday at the Moshofsky Center on Leo Harris Parkway; and 9 am to the game tip-off at 7 pm Wednesday at Mac Court. Everyone donating items can receive a voucher for free admission to the UO women’s basketball game against Willamette University.
“We prepare students to be citizens of the world, and this is an opportunity for our students and the entire community to come together,” said UO President Richard Lariviere in a press release. “I’ve spent considerable time in the region of the world near Pakistan, and the people of Pakistan have been and are suffering from natural and man-made ravages. I encourage anyone who can to help in this effort.”
Donations can also be made at any St. Vincent de Paul store or attended donation site. Call 687-5820 ext. 121 or email email@example.com
• The next community workshop on Envision Eugene is set for 4 to 7 pm Thursday, Oct. 28, at the Eugene Public Library downtown. Envision Eugene is a public process to deal with projected growth in Eugene’s population. One key issue is expansion of the city’s Urban Growth Boundary.
• An all-day community conference on making Eugene more ecologically sustainable will be from 8:30 am to 4:30 pm Saturday, Oct. 30, at the First Methodist Church, 1375 Olive St. in Eugene. “Eugene — Local and Green — Getting Started, Moving Forward, Working Together” is sponsored by Eugene’s Neighborhood Leaders Council Committee on Sustainability in collaboration with numerous community groups and organizations. Cost is sliding scale, $5 to $20. See schedule at http://wkly.ws/uv
• The election night gathering that traditionally happens at the Lane County Fairgrounds has been moved to the Willamalane Adult Activity Center, 215 W. C St., in Springfield. The gathering begins around 7 pm Tuesday, Nov. 2. Deadline for voting in the Tuesday elections is 8 pm, and ballots can be dropped off in any of the white ballot boxes around town or on campus. See your ballot for box locations.
Art Robinson has said the best way to dispose of radioactive nuclear waste is to put it in home building products such as cement for foundations and insulation for walls. I don’t know if Robinson would be more dangerous going to Congress, or going into business making building supplies. — Rafael Aldave, Eugene
•• Will medical pot advocates turn out in droves by Tuesday to save the butts of progressive candidates statewide? Maybe, maybe not. What we do know is that the outcome of close races depends on who votes, particularly in mid-term elections. Tea Party Republicans and conservative independents are smelling blood in the water, and if progressives and moderates don’t bother to show up and vote, our state and national maps will be smeared red. Any progress we’ve made in the last two years on protecting the environment, expanding the availability of health care, protecting civil rights and reining in outrageous corporate behavior could be diminished or lost. It’s getting late to mail in ballots, but those white ballot boxes are easy to find around town.
• Remember the fun election buttons in our Oct. 14 endorsements issue? “Fight Electile Dysfunction” and “I Didn’t Vote and All I Got Was This Lousy Politician.” Well, some button messages that didn’t make it in print were: “No Sex Until You Vote,” “Voting Makes Me Wet,” “Leggo My DeFazio!” and “I Think, Therefore I Vote.” Words to live by, words to vote by. “Just Vote It!”
• Springfield Mayor Sid Leiken has been looking for a paid job. His primary campaign for Congress got derailed by a campaign finance scandal (too bad, because the Republicans ended up with the absurd Art Robinson), so Leiken set his sights lower and joined the race for Bill Dwyer’s open seat on the Lane County Commission. We have endorsed his opponent, Pat Riggs-Henson, because we think she is better able to accomplish something with her background in jobs creation and education. Leiken is a decent fellow, but this week we heard from a local pundit who has known and admired the Leiken family for generations. He tells us that the younger Leiken “is, at best, the Music Man; if Springfield wants to keep electing him mayor because he is a great gladhander, that is their business; but they shouldn’t inflict him on the rest of us.” So, a vote for Riggs-Henson is also a vote to keep Leiken as mayor. Everybody wins. And wouldn’t it be great for Springfield to elect its first ever female county commissioner!
• As we noted in News Briefs last week, Lane County commissioners are gathering public input on new regulations to protect sources of drinking water in the county, and it’s about time. Our recent series of stories on the Willamette watershed have focused on how water quality is directly affected by what happens on land. Most of the proposed rules are proactive, commonsense measures to avoid polluting our precious drinking water as rural residential development increases. Most rural homeowners are conscientious and responsible; but there are others who loudly defend their “right” to do anything they want with their property, even if it means destroying wildlife habitat and endangering everyone downstream. Ten years ago the commissioners voted down a Critical Habitat Conservation Ordinance that included similar safeguards. Let’s cool the hysterics and get it done this time.
• Rick Levin’s sports column this week squawks a little about the Ducks’ no-huddle offense. Oregon takes about 15 seconds to snap the ball after it’s set, compared to roughly 20-25 seconds for other “fast” teams. So how will the football establishment react to this clever change to the game? Copy it across the country? Or find a way to rule against it? Traditionalists might argue that football should be more like baseball where the pitcher must wait for the batter to get ready before firing a pitch. TV commentators complain that they don’t have time to show replays. Opposing coaches search for ploys to slow the action. Duck fans love the razzle-dazzle intensity, and, we win.
• We’d like to offer The Wall Street Journal our services as a proofreader and fact-checker when it comes to Oregon coverage. We love the love that our state gets in the WSJ and The New York Times too, and we’re pleased as punch that Eugene’s Pacific Tree Climbing Institute got a nice big write-up in the Oct. 16-17 weekend issue (“Taking Tree-Hugging to New Heights”). But FYI to the WSJ writer: You were not “deep in the Fall Creek wilderness”; you were in fact in the middle of an actively logged area. There is no such thing as a “bard owl.” We have no Shakespearean owls either, for that matter; we have barred owls, and they are non-native and invading the forests where our threatened northern spotted owls live, thanks to climate change and logging. Keep up the coverage, East Coast friends, but keep your birds and logged landscapes straight!
SLANT includes short opinion pieces, observations and rumor-chasing notes compiled by the EW staff. Heard any good rumors lately? Contact Ted Taylor at 484-0519, editor at eugeneweekly dot com
“I made 52 descents of the Grand Canyon,” says Bruce Klepinger, Ph.D., who left an academic post at the University of Kansas in 1973 to begin a career as a river guide. “The first time was with my dad around 1970.” Klepinger credits his passion for outdoor adventure to his father, an Indiana physician who took the family on extended vacation trips. “One of his favorites was Rocky Mountain Park,” says Klepinger who got into climbing as a teen before becoming a mountain guide in the mid-1970s to fill out his working year. “The river season is summer.” From 1975-88, he led 105 trips for the Mountain Travel adventure-trip company. “I worked 355 days in 1981, all over the world,” Klepinger says. “I didn’t need a house or a car.” In 1989, the same year he chose to settle in Eugene, Klepinger started his own adventure-travel company, Ibex Expeditions. All Ibex adventures are custom-planned treks, journeys by foot where the traveler’s personal gear is carried by pack animals or human porters. “I’ve envisioned my trips as hands-on, dirty hands,” he says. “One of the objectives is to see the real world in remote places, where there are many lessons to learn.” Learn about upcoming expeditions to Ethiopia, India and Peru at www.bruceklepinger.com