TEACH-IN + ACTION

  

Preparatory to the Week of Action, Marisol Cortez of Esperanza Center advises:

WhatFrom Idle No More to Eagle Ford and Beyond: A Teach-In on Native Rights and the Rights of Mother Earth
 
Who: People’s Power Coalition and San Anto Activists in Solidarity with Idle No More – facilitators Diane Wilson and Antonio Diaz 
 
When: Saturday, March 2nd, 10am – 3pm
 
Where: Esperanza Peace and Justice Center, 922 San Pedro Ave 78212 
 
“From Idle No More to Eagle Ford and Beyond: A Teach-In on Native Rights and the Rights of Mother Earth.”

3/2/13

 Esperanza Center

Feed-back from Rachell Tucker of SUSJ: Just wanted to share how the teach-in went and to tell you all the great news that SUSJ’s action on the 22nd of March has a lot of support already!

We heard from Marisol Cortez, Ray Rios  + Antonio Diaz (Texas Indigenous Council) and Diane Wislon (Shrimper and Enviro. Activist).  They all shared their stories and knowledge of the Eagle Ford Shale and KXL pipeline.
Many of the panel speakers shared inspirational direct action experiences, such the Tar Sand Blockade. They set up platforms on the trees along the KXL pathway blocking the demolition crew as well as standing in solidarity with property owners who did not sign an agreement with TransCanada. (acknowledged the illusion of choice and how privilege is demonstrated by actually having the choice of signing an agreement versus having low income homes and communities have no voice/choice).  Presentation explaining what fracking exactly is and what/how it affects humans, non-human beings, the environment (water,soil, air) and the future of our planet.
 
Diane Wilson demonstrated and expressed how a realization of ‘soul power’ drove her to confront corporate polluters in order to protect her community and way of life (shrimping) from chemical runoff.  She has been very successful in her protests using hunger strikes & nonviolent tactics, and has worked side by side in the Manchester fight against Valero.
 
Key points to check out are:
-Universal Declaration of the Rights of Mother Earth
-SA indigenous rights (prohibited from using land by missions because of National Park status- one of the many “reasons” given to them)
-Texas Railroad Commission being a big player in fracking transpo.

 

TARNATION

As long as seven years ago, at least a few us smelled more than decomposing rats when developers did not rush to visit on the hurricane-devastated Gulf Coast an infestation of new timeshares, as was their typical habit–and looked further askance at the endless delays at restoring even so much as the NOLA Interstate link.

Excellent documentary re Deepwater Horizon. Hour & a half: http://www.filmsforaction.org/watch/the_big_fix_2012/

By the time of BP’s debacle going on three years ago, only the “studiedly obtuse” (I’m saying liars feigning stupidity) could still deny that high levels of planning had relegated the entire southern coast — a sacrifice zone.

Now we begin to see what they had in mind.

Refineries perch on Baytown, Texas City, Port Arthur, Houston’s East End & Norco LA, corporate vultures Exxon-Mobil  British Petroleum, Valero and Shell greedy to guzzle the diluted bitumen from Keystone XL (or the Enbridge Pegasus workaround conduit). Those are areas that will be immediately destroyed for quarterly profit–environmentally destroyed, communities destroyed, human beings destroyed, families destroyed.

TARNATION (from SA Current in PDF)

Think we won’t be drinking & breathing the last dregs of the dino-juice here in Es-se? You believe Valero is gonna refill the tank farm at Elemendorf with expensive “light, sweet crude”? Think again. The NuStar/now Calumet refinery on S Presa will be belching out hyper-toxicity ’til hell won’t have it. Hey, they’ve done it before! Southsiders are pretty much like the folks in Manchester, hunh? Not a lotta country-club swells out there–no gated communities like the one where Valero CEO Kleese resides.

Because the mechanisms of governance no longer control the “corporate citizens”, there is now no formal mechanism of power to stop them from creating a corporate oligarchic state to openly abet their carnage. To the capitulationists who will not confront the likes of Valero, I’d ask who should we lobby? To whom should we go beg on bended knee? The charlatan in the Oval Office?

Forget that. It is time for something more!

F-17, TAR SANDS BLOCKADE & IMPORTANCE OF THE INDIGENOUS

Sunday’s mixed bag: Sierra Club/350.org marched paradoxically to “support the President”   at the Forward on Climate demonstration in Washington, DC.

Though her request to address the rally reportedly was denied, Dr Jill Stein was there with a Green Contingent involving Occupiers, teacher- unionists and other fighters from the trenches.  Jill interviewed  at 27:00-32:00 mins on http://www.ustream.tv/recorded/29360165

Also, an Ecosocialist Contingent  assembled by Solidarity/ISO said they engaged to “begin building a radical current within the movement, in order to overcome the limitations in the strategies pursued by mainstream environmental groups and build grassroots power that can win.” (Respectfully observe there has long existed a “radical current”–among Earth First & others. But the principle is sound.)

I am not surprised to report as little confidence in the motives of Sierra Club as I began with.   IMO, they mobilized for little more than to “help” their President pull the woolly-woolly. That said:

I don’t put faith in a lotta peeps–especially groups. But the indigenous are one lot who retain dignity in the face of unremitting oppression. You don’t meet too many “Indian” shills.

Hence, Sierra Club hoped that a few Native Americans on the platform might weave credibility about the flagrant co-optation from political panderers like Van Jones. 

Chief Jacqueline Thomas; Saik’uz First Nation (northern BC)
Crystal Lameman; Beaver Lake Cree First Nations (northern Alberta)

were, in fact, the ONLY scheduled speakers worth attention

A couple others did manage to get to the mike. Casey Camp from the Ponca Nation in OK, also had much to say on the environmental genocide most of the marchers can only imagine. AND

The Manchester & Port Arthur fightbacks got a mention–thanks to a Cherokee sister from Louisiana. (Did not get her name but pretty sure she was INM-associated.) 

At least they were allowed on the platform. I am confident Idle No More will NOT stand down when greenwashed liberals claim proprietorship of the Keystone X-L issue and all should now just go home & shut up.

Respect to & support for all the fighters who have really made the difference. ALL POWER TO THE BLOCKADE! Tar Sands Blockade http://www.tarsandsblockade.org/weekofaction/

 

SA Local Elections

Elections for San Antonio City Council, SAISD & other school districts will be held on May 11th 2013. Already in the fields:

For Mayor: Rhett Smith (versus Julian Castro)

Rhett’s 2012 Texas Green Candidates page:
http://texasgreencandidates.com/rhettsmith.html

For Council District 2: Antonio Diaz (versus Ivy Taylor)

Antonio Diaz, founder & spokesperson of Texas Indigenous Council, works as a cab driver and lives in the heart of the East Side. Addressing City Council last year:

Antonio’s 2012 Texas Green Candidates page:
http://texasgreencandidates.com/antoniodiaz.html

Hear both on our videos: Los Verdes de San Antonio de Béxar

Unconscionable

Manchester–in the East End of Houston, kettled by Valero & other petrochemical operations & proposed terminus of the Keystone X-L. The star marks the park where children gag on the toxic fumes & police cede authority to Valero security-thugs. (Rather reminiscent of the old days when the actual “laws” in Kleberg County were the King Ranch gunmen.)
But what is equally unconscionable: while a cadre of Houston activists–AnarchistsBlockaders, Occupiers–have mobilized a fight-back, here we sit, where that corporate brute squats right by the UTSA campus and have yet to engage. Not as if San Antonians, particularly Southsiders  have no bad experience with Valero. hunh?
Valero Energy Corporate Headquarters 
SA activistsBexar County Green Party, Students United for Socioeconomic Justice, Southwest Workers Union, Texas Indigenous Council and supporters of Idle No More–will recognize Manchester’s struggle as our struggle.

Valero we recall you when you were Diamond Shamrock; we remember LoVacaNustar–we know you and your works. Expect us.

BAD LAW FROM TEXAS LEGE

HB 824 should be rejected so let your State representative hear from you

Dear GEAA members and friends,

Heads up on bad bill filed last Friday: H.B. 824 – Callegari would triple the volume of sewage spills that require reporting from the current 500 gallons to 1,500 gallons.  It would also exempt from reporting a spill that “does not reach waters of the State”. We read this to mean that many spills occurring in the extremely porous karst of the Edwards Aquifer Recharge Zone would be exempt from reporting.  The bill also gives the Texas Commission for Environmental Quality (TCEQ) more latitude in determining which spills are considered harmful to public health.

GEAA’s recently released studies on sewage spills within the Hill Country would have painted a completely different picture of the condition of our sewage infrastructure had the reporting requirements proposed by HB 824 been in effect.  We can’t let the Legislature just sweep problems with wastewater infrastructure under the rug.

We need those of you represented by Trey Martinez Fischer, Tracy King, Lyle Larson or Doug Miller (all members of the House Natural Resource Committee) to let them know what you think of this bill filed by their fellow Committee member, Representative Bill Callegari of Houston.  We will keep you posted on any movement of this stinker.

Tune in tomorrow (Tuesday, 2/5 at 8:30 a.m.) for a joint hearing of the House and Senate Natural Resource Committee on WATER.  Those of you not in Austin can view the full hearing on-line tomorrow from this link:  http://www.house.state.tx.us/video-audio/

And, for a well reasoned opinion on how the State should address our water needs, read Andrew Samson’s op-ed in today’s Houston Chronicle.

Thanks to all of you for your interest and support,

Annalisa Peace, Executive Director

You can always keep up with interesting water news on GEAA’s Face Book page and, you can mail contributions to support GEAA’s Legislative advocacy to PO Box 15618, San Antonio, Texas 78212

 

Better Late than Never?

It would appear the Keystone XL Blockaders  have impacted the cozy consciousness of greenwashed liberals. Rather than face a perception of irrelevance to the Climate Crisis, the Sierra Club announced they will venture a dainty toe into the dark waters of Civil Disobedience
possibly at the upcoming Forward on Climate Rally on the National Mall February 17th. http://action.sierraclub.org/site/PageServer?pagename=nat_signup_feb17
As the Sierrans, compromised by by taking millions of dollars in fracking gas money, still posture at “helping” their well-meaning corporate President “do the right thing”, the upshot of all this remains to be seen.  Stay tuned.
You already know where We are at: 

 In the wake of Hurricane Sandy, Green Party presidential candidate Jill Stein was handcuffed and arrested after bringing food and supplies to a coalition of climate justice activists, known as the “Tar Sands Blockade,” who are attempting to stop the Keystone XL pipeline in Texas.  At Wood County Jail awaiting processing:

“Everyone needs to step up resistance to climate-killing emissions,” said Stein, who was willing to risk arrest in order to show solidarity for this blockade.  “Romney and Obama are only talking about the symptoms of climate change in terms of destruction caused by Hurricane Sandy; the blockaders are addressing the cause.”

Read more →

3:15PM – Dr. Jill Stein was released from Wood County TX Jail on a Class B Misdemeanor Criminal Trespass charge.