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February 23, 2017 05:06 PM

Actual press release from the Oregon Dairy Farmers Association posted without comment.

OREGON DAIRY FARMERS CONVENTION FOCUSES ON THE CONTRIBUTION OF DAIRY WIVES

Oregon Dairy Farmers Association Convention Focus on Issues Including Dairy Wives who bring so much to their Dairy Farm Operations 

The Oregon Dairy Farmers Association hosted a two day convention at the Salem Convention Center on February 20-21

A panel of well-informed women spoke candidly about the joys and struggles of dairy farming during a convention workshop Monday afternoon.

Attendees heard four farm wives share their experiences of working in the dairy industry. It can be trying when frictions in the barns hit home, they said.

"It's super hard to see my son get yelled at by his dad," said Susan Pierson, a fourth-generation farmer. As both mother and wife, she is often a sounding board when things get overheated. "I have to do a lot of listening and not a lot of talking. But later I might say something to my husband like, 'You know, you were a little hard on him..."

"I feel like I'm in the middle a lot," said Julie Lourenzo, who shares the workload with her husband and other family members. When conflict arises, "I talk to both sides and try to work it out."

"I brought a husband into the job," said panel moderator Bobbi Frost, who is familiar with that uncomfortable space between the spouse you love and the parents who raised you. The audience responded to a frank discussion about whether the panelists encouraged their children to pursue farming.

Sarah Rocha, mother of four boys, said she chose to allow her children to find their path. "The more you push, the more they push back," she said.

Rocha runs the calf operation on a farm with 600-650 cows and 150 goats.

"I pushed my sons away from the dairy," said Pierson, an organic farmer for 12 years. But as it was with other panelists, some children decide to join the family business after a time. Of one son she said, "All of a sudden he came to us and said he wanted to come back."

In response to a question about when how to draw the line between work and family time, Lourenzo said she knows she has reached her limit when she begins to voice complaints. "If you are going to complain, it's a sign you are doing too much," she said.

A highlight of the breakout session was when moderator Frost, who brought along her 11-month-old daughter, Max, to the convention, said she "felt like Superman" on a day when she completed her work while toting an infant around the farm.

Then she provided the quote of the afternoon with an observation about childbirth.

"One day my husband said to me that getting hit in the nuts is worse than having a baby. " How so, she wondered?

"You want another baby, right?" he said. "But you don't hear me saying I want someone to hit me in the nuts again."

The Oregon Dairy Farmers Association is located in Salem. The Association has been proudly serving Oregon's Dairy farmers since 1892.

 

February 22, 2017 03:41 PM

At this extraordinary juncture in U.S.. history, I’m finding it hard to write about gardening. Gardening itself, however, is still seductive — a rare escape from anguish mixed with sheer terror. When I am gardening, gardening is pretty much all I think about. So any chance I get, as long as the temperature hits 45 or better, I have been outside sprucing up my winter garden, clearing the decks for emerging signs of spring.

My first priority is removing an excess of wet, fallen leaves where primroses and small early bulbs are emerging. Then I cut last year’s leaves off the hellebores. It deters blackspot disease and shows off the flowers, some of which are already opening. And it is easier to do now than after new leaves appear, especially if the clumps are large. I’ve also started clearing and weeding some places where the foliage of daffodils and tulips are poking out of the ground.

Most yards look pretty drab at this time of year. They don’t have to. Winter flowers may be smaller and less showy than the glorious blooms of late spring and summer, but they can still make a difference. They also provide food for honey bees, which can emerge on any sunny winter afternoon. One witch hazel, a couple of Lenten roses and a clump of snowdrops in a spot you pass by every day or see from a window can really lift your mood.

Lenten rose

Lenten rose

SOME OUTSTANDING WINTER ORNAMENTALS

Lenten rose (Helleborus x hybridus)
Snowdrop, early crocus, winter aconite
Witch hazel
Cornus alba ‘Elegantissima’, Cornus ‘Midwinter Fire’(for colorful twigs)
Pieris variegata - compact growth and pretty leaves-a great container plant
Iris fetidissima ‘Variegata’(for beautiful variegated leaves)
Mahonia species, native or not, are great for the bees

Witch hazel

February 22, 2017 03:29 PM

In an update sent to Lane Community College faculty and staff today, LCC president Mary Spilde reminds that that a sanctuary policy was passed by the LCC board in February and says, "In the unlikely event that anyone from any federal agency shows up in a classroom or office they should be directed to the President's Office."

The portions of the president's message that relate to immigration are below.

Resolution on the Protection, Safety and Sanctuary of All Students

You may be aware that the board of education passed a resolution on the Protection, Safety and Sanctuary of All Students at the February meeting. The resolution is attached. We are now working on developing board policy that embeds some of the elements of the resolution. We plan to have first readings in March.

In the meantime, I'd like to provide some guidance. In the unlikely event that anyone from any federal agency shows up in a classroom or office they should be directed to the President's Office. Our staff is developing a protocol to review credentials and warrants or subpoenas.

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has recently updated its FAQs on the "Sensitive Locations Policy." In the past colleges and universities were listed as places to avoid for enforcement activities. The update does not appear to change this practice. Please remember also that FERPA protects student information and representatives of the college are not to provide any information about our students’ schedules, attendance, grades, etc. to anyone not authorized to receive it. If something happens after hours, please send the individual(s) to Public Safety.

At this time this scenario is highly unlikely. DHS guidance released on Tuesday does not appear to target “Dreamers” or DACA students but, of course, their families will likely be impacted as these enforcement actions ramp up. In addition, we expect a new Executive Order regarding banning individuals from certain countries. As the situation evolves we will be monitoring things and re-grouping as events change.

February 22, 2017 02:39 PM

This Facebook Live video was posted by Angie Spencer from the Standing Rock protest against the Dakota Access Pipeline. State officials ordered the protest camps to be cleared out today, Feb. 22, by 2 pm.

Spencer lists herself as a "PTSD Specialist. PhD Candidate. Human & Civil Rights Advocate. Oceti Oyate, All Nations."

News site Buzzfeed has been there covering the removal, as has The Atlantic.

Local DAPL water protector Janie Coverdell is still at Standing Rock. She posted to her Facebook page this morning that she was on her way back  to the Sacred Stone Camp,  and "There will be a blockade of sorts. Armed forces will not be allowing entry in a few days or so..not even food/firewood."

Coverdell is fundraising to cover the cost of her trip to Standing Rock. She gave up her job to join the protest, she writes on her GoFundMe page. To donate, go here

February 17, 2017 01:54 PM

On Wednesday, Feb. 15, Oregon senators Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley, along with Al Franken and six other U.S. senators, sent Secretary of Defense James Mattis a letter requesting information about Steve Bannon’s position within the newly reorganized National Security Council.

The letter also requests more information about the reorganization and asks Mattis if the DOD “was consulted prior to” the changes.

Bannon is one of the founders of Breitbart news, which has promoted racist, anti-Semitic and anti-Islamic propaganda — but he has denied being a white nationalist saying "I'm an economic nationalist. I am an America first guy," according to a Wall Street Journal interview.

President Trump called for the reorganization of the Homeland Security Council and the National Security Council in a presidential memorandum that, in the words of the senators' letter, “downgraded the roll of the Chairman of the Join Chiefs of Staff and Director of National Intelligence (DNI) on the NSC Principals Committee while placing Mr. Bannon as a regular attendee of these meetings.”

The senators write: “We are concerned that the unprecedented elevation of a political operative to the senior leadership of the NSC may compromise the national security decision making process and put American lives at risk.”

The letter also states Bannon claims to be a “‘Leninist’ who wants to ‘destroy the state’ and ‘bring everything crashing down.’”

The senators are requesting a response from Secretary Mattis by March 1. The full letter is below.

February 16, 2017 12:00 AM

Staged lab photo courtesy of OSP

Melissa’s Law was enacted in Oregon to ensure the transparency of tracking and testing rape kits. But when Eugene Weekly requested the mandated reporting numbers under the new law it was hard to get answers. 

EW was also unable to tour a lab and see how rape kits are dealt with. In lieu of a tour, EW was sent staged photos.

The two-page summary EW received detailed the following numbers of SAFE kits obtained by Oregon State Police in 2016: total number of SAFE Kits received 1,281; total SAFE Kits completed 757; total number of pending SAFE requests 742. 

The report was emailed to Eugene Weekly by OSP Forensic Director Capt. Alex Gardner, the former Lane County District Attorney. Gardner, who declined to be interviewed by phone or in person, would only communicate via email. He then stopped responding to emails before clarifying the breakdown of the numbers in the two-page report. The number of kits received, processed and pending didn’t add up, and it would take several weeks for officer Bill Fugate to provide an explanation.

“I’m not a mathematician, but those don’t seem to add up,” says OSP Public Information Officer Bill Fugate. He says the state crime lab’s capacity is what it was able to process — 757 kits. 

However 757 completed kits, plus 742 request, equals 1,499 kits, not 1,281.

Under Melissa’s Law, SAFE kit numbers are required to be reported to the Oregon Legislature by Jan. 15. After requesting the totals reported to the Legislature and repeatedly asking how the numbers were calculated, this reporter sent several dozen emails, made two calls to Gardner, a dozen calls to Fugate and an exchange of text messages to Fugate seeking an explanation for the numbers.

On Feb. 10 via text, Fugate “confirmed that these numbers are correct.” 

He includes a screen shot with the original numbers. 

 He wrote that the way he reads it was in 2016 OPS received 1,281 kits and completed 757, but he says some of those could have been received before 2016, and the same with the pending kits.

EW asked, “How far does that number date back?” 

“I’ll check when I have time,” Fugate replied. 

On Feb. 6, the number of SAFE kits processed was changed to 1,236. An email from Fugate read: “When we ran the initial computer reports SAFE kit requests were showing “completed” after our biologists checked “complete” on their portion of the process, but before the requests were finished with DNA processing. That error was caught and corrected before the final legislative report went out.” 

But Feb. 10, EW received a voicemail saying the initial report was correct and reported to the Legislature. Fugate says the numbers didn’t add up because “there are some anomalies that occurred.”

EW initially requested a tour of an OSP forensic lab on Dec. 29, 2016. After sending multiple requests and reminders, on Feb. 3, EW received an email about a tour that read, “whenever we do these evidence needs to be removed from the work areas and other sensitive information to ensure evidence integrity … so tours are disruptive. Adds to backlog.” — Corinne Boyer

February 16, 2017 12:17 PM

"PyschoSuperMom" Lauren Mayer writes and performs an anti-Trump folk song — the Ballad of Donald vs. Nordstrom takes on the Donald's battle with department store Nordstrom over dropping his daughter Ivanka's line of clothing.

So heed the tale I'm telling while these chords strum

About when Donald Picked A Fight With Nordstrom

His insults and his lies just made their stock price rise

It's the ballad of Donald vs. Nordstrom.



 

 

February 16, 2017 12:25 PM

Eugene musician Mike Scheidt is best known as mastermind behind Eugene-based, internationally acclaimed "doom metal" band Yob.

Scheidt recently underwent a dramatic health scare, and he needs some support to cover medical costs. His story even made it to the national music press. Vice's Noisey picked up Scheidt's story as an op ed.  

You can donate to Scheidt's medical costs at his GoFundMe page here.

February 10, 2017 06:29 PM

Environmental groups that have long fought to preserver the coastal old growth of the Elliott State Forest are celebrating today.

The public forest was recently threatened with privatization, but today Gov. Kate Brown released a plan to keep the forest public and in her statement addresses its value as habitat and as a carbon sink. 

Cascadia Wildlands, one of the earliest conservation groups to agitate to save the Elliott, released a statement in response, saying the group is:

… encouraged by the governor's leadership toward finding a lasting solution for the Elliott State Forest that maintains the forest in public ownership. There are still a number of details that need to be worked out and elaborated on, and we look forward to continuing to working toward a solution that safeguards all the public values of the forest, including protecting old growth and mature stands, wildlife habitat, clean air and water and recreation.

The Oregon League of Conservation Voters celebrated as well, sending out an email blast that says, "With almost nothing but bad news on the environment coming from Washington D.C., it’s phenomenal to see real leadership here in Oregon."

Brown's statement in full is below.

The Elliott State Forest was created in 1930, through consolidating tracts of Common School Fund forest land scattered across Oregon. Since the mid-1950s the Elliott has produced in excess of $400 million for Oregon schools. About 90 percent (82,500 acres) of the Elliott State Forest is owned by Oregon's Common School Fund – a trust fund for K-12 public education that is overseen by the State Land Board as trustees.

Since 2013, because of harvest limitations prompted by a lawsuit over federally protected species, owning the Elliott has cost the Common School Fund more than $4 million. We must change the way we own and manage the forest, ways that benefit Oregon's schools and children for the long term.

Oregon's public lands — our forests, parks, and beaches — are irreplaceable assets. Even in the face of complicated challenges, we must strive to protect the values Oregonians hold dear.

Today I propose my way forward for the Elliott, a plan I believe is in the best interest of future generations of Oregonians.

• The Elliott is Oregon's first State Forest, and has been a State Forest since 1930. Under my plan, the Elliott State Forest would remain in public ownership, with either the state or tribes owning the land.

• A bond proposal would be developed to include up to $100 million in state bonding capacity to protect high value habitat, including riparian areas, steep slopes, and old growth stands. The investment will go into the Common School Fund and decouple a portion of the forest from the Common School Fund trust lands.

• On the remainder of the forest, we will re-enter into negotiations with the Federal Services for a Habitat Conservation Plan (HCP) that will allow for sustainable timber harvest while protecting endangered and threatened species. We expect that harvest to average about 20 million board feet per year over the long term – the next 100 years of this state forest's history.

• We hope to work with the tribes to regain ownership of their ancestral lands while protecting the Common School Fund.

When the state adopted the protocol to sell the Elliott, there was no established value for the forest. Because we followed the protocol, we have an appraised value of $221 million.

We know the Elliott is worth far more to Oregon's children than $221 million. By investing in and protecting the highest quality habitat, areas where forest management is the most vulnerable to expensive and lengthy lawsuits, we are protecting marbled murrelets, owls, and coho salmon. At the same time, sustainable forestry management on the remainder of the land can generate continued financial returns for Oregon schools.

We also know Oregon forests are a carbon sink, holding an estimated 3 billion tons of carbon. Growing trees is something the Elliott does well, and in public ownership the forest will help the state meet our climate goals. That, too, benefits Oregon's school children, and all Oregonians for generations to come.

 

February 8, 2017 04:06 PM

Tsunami Books has been an institution in the South Eugene neighborhood for over 20 years, but the beloved book shop is facing serious problems that may shut it down this summer without community support. Read the press release below.

 Public Show of Support regarding The Future of Tsunami Books.

The Lease for Tsunami Books is up June 30, 2017.  There are other major business concerns that want to take over the lease for this property beginning July 1, 2017.  We do not want to leave, but do not yet have the financial resources to stay. We have asked for, and kindly received the opportunity to deliver a proposal for a minimum five-year lease to the building owners no later than March 31.  At the very least, the rent will double.

 On December 28, 2016, a Public Meeting was held.  Thirty-nine people participated.  Since then a growing number of motivated members of the community have stepped up to help, and after five meetings a highly creative plan is being formulated.  The key question is: is there truly enough support from the Community that is Tsunami Books to energize this movement to do what we can to secure a new lease?  Please drop by the Bookstore, even for a moment, on Wednesday, February 8, from 10 am-9 am.  That’s the day we’ve picked as Show-of-Support for Tsunami Day.  We’ll be taking a head count, we’ve got a very simple 5-question form we’d like you to fill out, with copies to share with your friends. Volunteers from the ad-hoc committee and Scott (prez and gm) will be here all day to answer your questions. The newspapers, tv, and radio are all being notified.  Let’s share a laugh and a tear of joy, and get on with the effort to make our own good way in this crazy new world.

Thank you.

February 6, 2017 02:51 PM

We woke up today and it was cold, pouring rain and Donald Trump is still president and he and his cronies are still making shit up.

Luckily we have Randy Rainbow to help us sing our blues away.

For like 5 minutes.

And in case you are one of EW's many readers who doesn't have TV and stays off Facebook and somehow missed Saturday Night Live and Melissa McCarthy's take on Sean Spicer, let this be our gift to you. 

In some strange new, probably temporary, strategy, Trump did not take to Twitter Sunday morning to call SNL "Not Funny" and predict it's demise and Spicer told Fox News that McCarthy's spoof of him was "cute."

February 4, 2017 03:59 PM

Eugene Weekly is getting reports of local businesses, including Old Nick's Pub, being tagged with Nazi graffiti the night of Feb. 3.

Photo of graffiti at Old Nick's Pub by Emily Nyman.

A post on the Pacific Northwest Anti-Fascist Workers Collective Facebook page reads:

Please share:

The first picture is the boreal. The second two are old nicks. They were tagged last night by the local neo-nazi contingency. Nazis are coming after our show spaces. Not in the abstract, but they are making material threats against the two most visible punk/metal venues in Eugene Oregon. I'm asking all of you to push back on this disgusting nonsense. Please come out to every show. Even if you don't like the music. Just come out and support the venues. Hang out outside, have a drink (at old nicks) go back and forth between the two, but COME OUT AND SUPPORT THEM. The nazi contingency wants to intimidate them out of business, please stand by your community and make that impossible. Thanks.

The post also features photos of another swastika as well as the number 88, which is said to be numerical code for "Heil Hitler" as H is the eighth letter of the alphabet. 

Update:

Eugene police spokesperson Melinda McLaughlin confirmed that cases of "criminal mischief (bias)" were investigated at 107 Van Buren Avenue (Jerry and Walt's Auto Care) and 211 Washington Street (Old Nick's). The police report says that officers investigated two cases of swastikas painted in the Whiteaker neighborhood. "There were no leads or suspect information."

February 3, 2017 12:02 PM

It started with the Netherlands: ""We totally understand it's going to be America First — But can we just say 'The Netherlands Second?'" a Dutch TV show asked, adding in a Donald Trump-cadenced voice, "We speak Dutch. It's the best language in all of Europe. We've got all the best words. All the other languages? Failed. Danish? Total disaster."

The video went viral, with YouTube currently clocking in at more than 17 million views.

The Swiss response soon followed: "We are not flat, like for example, the Netherlands. Total disaster," the cheeky and inuendo-filled video intones in Trumpian tones. "Like the KKK we also like to ride on horses and burn things."

As a Dane, my favorite is Denmark's response, also using the Trumpified vocal talents of Shaun Streeter. "We know you like golden showers, excuse me, golden towers, and we  have one, the golden tower in Tivoli Gardens," and offering to turn its windpower to oil.

Lithuania, Portugal and Germany have all weighed in as well, and you can see all the videos at everysecondcounts.eu.

If you are laughing at Trump, Europe is laughing with you. If you are horrified by Trump, well, Europe is horrified too. 

January 31, 2017 11:52 AM

In a Jan 31 email to Lane Community College faculty and students, LCC President Mary Spilde writes of the recent executive orders from President Donald Trump temporarily banning travel from seven Muslim-majority countries and that the orders affect four LCC students. She adds that Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) students are still in limbo. 

Spilde's full statement is below.

Like many of you I have been dismayed and disappointed over the Presidential Executive Orders issued last week, particularly because of the impact on our students. These Orders were not processed or implemented in an orderly way causing a great deal of uncertainty, anxiety and extreme hardship for immigrants and refugees. The situation remains very fluid but along with our colleagues in our national associations we are monitoring events very carefully.

This kind of action does not align with the core values Lane lives by. It conflicts with the board policy on non-discrimination. I simply want to reaffirm our commitment to these values and policies and state that now, more than ever, we are unwavering in our commitment to equity and inclusion and to our students – all of our students. Lane is strengthened and enriched by the insights and culture brought by our international students and others and I believe that their presence contributes to international understanding and peace.

We have four students from one of the affected countries. We are reaching out to these students, listening and responding as we can. Our IESL and International Programs staff have been proactive in arranging activities to support students.

Of course, the impact of such reckless Orders goes far beyond these students. As Martin King said: “Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere … Whatever affects one directly, affects all indirectly.”

For example, our Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) students are still in limbo. Next week the board of education will take up a resolution on this matter that was deferred from an earlier meeting because of the snow storm. I expect the board to take a stand on behalf of our students.

I will keep you apprised of these issues as we learn more. For now, I ask that you reach out to one another and our students with compassion, caring and empathy.