December 9, 2011, Issue #673
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Dedicated to Helping Build Activist
Movements in the Hudson Valley———————————————————————
The Activist Newsletter will be posted next week. The main article analyzes the journey of President Obama to Asia, noting that Washington's on-again, off-again Cold War against China evidently is on again (for the third time since 1949). Another article will discuss Washington's virtual war against Iran.
REGIONAL OCCUPY GROUPS
ALBANY: Mayor Jennings is demanding that the Albany encampment near the State Capitol be disbanded by Dec. 22. Occupy events are still taking place. The website has details: http://occupyalbany.org/. A petition to the Mayor to withdraw his order may be signed at http://www.ipetitions.com/petition/allowalbanyoccupation/.
POUGHKEEPSIE: Police evicted the Occupy encampment here at 3 a.m. Wednesday, Dec. 7, nearly three months since it began. No one was harmed. Participants are sticking together and plan to continue taking action, including efforts to return to the park. Information is at http://www.occupypoughkeepsie.org/. The Poughkeepsie Journal article about the eviction, a subsequent rally later that day, and the group's future plans is at http://www.poughkeepsiejournal.com/article/20111208/NEWS01/312080022/Evicted-protesters-say-movement-will-go-on.
NEW PALTZ: Some 60 people met Dec. 8 and decided to form a community-student Occupy group, which will have its first action Saturday, Dec. 10 (below).
HUDSON VALLEY: A website carries information about the Occupy groups in the Valley and also has links to various Occupies throughout New York State. It is at http://www.occupyhudsonvalley.org/.
Saturday, Dec. 10, NEW PALTZ: A march, rally and possible occupation somewhere in the village will kick off at 12 noon from in front of the Chase Bank branch at 2 Plattekill Ave. (at Main St., across from Starbucks and the Elting Library.) The event may end up at Peace Park in front of Village Hall or nearby. A few days ago at the SUNY campus, students formed an Occupy group that demanded an extension of campus library hours, and immediately gained their objective.
Saturday, Dec. 10, NEW ROCHELLE: Women in Black will hold a Palestine Solidarity Vigil 2-3 p.m. on Main St. and Memorial Highway. The event is sponsored by WESPAC and CodePink Westchester. Information, email@example.com, (914) 654 8990.
Saturday, Dec. 10, POUGHKEEPSIE: A Climate Justice Summit, hosted by Clearwater, will take place 9 a.m.-1:15 p.m. at the Catharine St. Community Center, 69 Catharine St. (Use the 152 Mansion St. entrance). We're told: "The summit will provide the community with examples of potential careers, especially green jobs, which address the dual challenges of climate justice and difficult economic times. The program will showcase eight projects in climate-change mitigation and adaptation developed by Climate Justice Councils in Poughkeepsie, Kingston, Peekskill, and Beacon. The event is free, but registration is required at http://www.surveymonkey.com/s/ClimateJustice. Information, Karla Raimundi at firstname.lastname@example.org, (845) 265-8080.
Sunday, Dec. 11, NEW YORK STATE: Today's a good day to take an easy step to oppose fracking. Following the plea of the anti-fracking movement in New York State, over 10,000 people have signed a letter to Gov. Cuomo to withdraw the revised draft Supplemental Generic Environmental Impact Statement (SGEIS). For online information and a link to the collective letter, go to http://www.toxicstargeting.com/MarcellusShale/cuomo/coalition_letter/2011, then click on Sign the Letter.
Tuesday, Dec. 13, ALBANY: The influence of big money in political campaigns, a high-cost factor that immeasurably cheapens democracy, will be the subject of a presentation by Jessica Wisneski, the Legislative and Campaigns Director of Citizen Action of N.Y. She will discuss an approach to electing candidates that keeps them from becoming obligated to wealthy individuals and corporations, called "Voter Owned Elections" or "publicly financed elections." From the organizers: "Political campaign finance in N.Y. and the U.S. boils down to legalized bribery. Imagine a system where politicians respond to voters instead of donors, are being elected and making real positive changes — it's possible, come learn more." This 4-5:30 p.m. free event takes place on the Concourse Level (indoors, underground) of Empire State Plaza in downtown Albany (directions,  474-2418). It is sponsored by Occupy Albany. Information, email@example.com, (518) 466-9339.
Tuesday, Dec. 13, ROSENDALE: There will be a "Teach-in on the criminalization of Hydrofracking," 7-9 p.m., at the Canal Town Alley Art Center, 402 Main St. Fracking is a dangerous method of extracting natural gas that may, among other problems, destroy water supplies. Speakers will focus on N.Y. Public Law #1, a bill in the state legislature, which will criminalize hydrofracking. A local group, SPAN (Sovereign Peoples' Action Network), is organizing the event. Information, http://www.facebook.com/events/314965808527513/.
Tuesday, Dec. 17, WOODSTOCK: Starting at 12 noon there will be a "gathering to show local support for the beleaguered OWS movement, with speeches and a discussion forum" on the Village Green, 6 Tinker St. Information, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Saturday, Dec. 17, ALBANY: A 2006 documentary, perspicaciously titled "The One Percent," will be screened at 7:30 p.m. at First Unitarian Universalist Society of Albany, 405 Washington Ave. This 80-minute film was directed by Jamie Johnson, who, according to the program notes, "is a young heir to the Johnson & Johnson pharmaceutical fortune [who] takes a look at the increasing gap between rich and poor in the United States. A fitting prelude to the current Occupy Wall Street movement, Johnson explores the political, moral, and emotional rationale that enables a tiny minority of Americans, the one percent, to control nearly half the wealth of the entire United States. The film includes interviews with Bill Gates Sr., Nicole Buffett, Milton Friedman, Robert Reich, Ralph Nader, and others." It's free and public and sponsored by the Solidarity Committee of the Capital District, Bethlehem Neighbors for Peace, and Upper Hudson Peace Action. Information, email@example.com, (518) 426-0883.
Tuesday, Dec. 20, POUGHKEEPSIE: The Real Majority Project holds its 16th annual Christmas/Chanukah/Kwanzaa Holiday Interfaith Candlelight Vigil for Economic Justice at 5:30 p.m. in front of the County Office Building, 22 Market St. Speakers include Rabbi Paul Golomb, Rev. Gail Burger, Rev. Blake Rider, Richard Hathaway from Poughkeepsie Friends Meeting, Ann Perry, Pat Lamanna, Mae Parker-Harris, and county legislator Joel Tyner, the organizer. Information, firstname.lastname@example.org.