News ClipsCharter Reform - Empire Boycott - GMO's on the run
Collected by the staff
Los Angeles - Charter reform in Los Angeles brought us neighborhood councils, which now number 79.
The City Council and the Mayor have expressed unqualified enthusiasm and pledge to listen to what the neighborhood councils say.
Grass Roots Venice Neighborhood Council (GRVNC) was founded by Tisha Bedrosian, a registered Green, who became the first president of GRVNC.
In the last election, three Greens were elected: Sabrina Venskus (environmental attorney) and myself, Sheila Bernard (adult academic teacher for LA Unified School District) were elected at large, and Tom Omeara (communications technician in the electric car division of General Motors) was elected as communications officer. For the next election, in order to have more egalitarian neighborhood councils, it is likely that a motion will be put forward for a bylaws change to eliminate the office of president in favor of rotating the facilitation of meetings and sharing other duties now assigned to the president.
A majority of the current board members were elected on a platform including community control of development and the creation and preservation of affordable housing. The entire platform and biographies of these candidates, who ran as a slate called Progressive Grassroots Candidates, can be viewed at http://home.comcast.net/~venicecandidates.
-Reported by Sheila Bernard
Humboldt County - Greens recently called for an Empire Boycott on all products which war on nature and humanity.
Any product that is bought or sold is considered guilty until proven innocent. The Emerald Region Green Party has developed an initial list of questions, including the following. What is the product?s petroleum content? How much sweat does it contain? How much military violence is needed for its production? Is it harmless to consumers? Does it damage the physical or mental health of its producers? Is it completely biodegradable in water, earth, and air - and in what time frames? Can we substitute a locally produced item? Humboldt County?s proposed boycott was developed in the name of a peace economy, and serves as an example of the key value Personal and Global Responsibility.
-Reported by Paul Encimer, Emerald Region Green Party representative
GMOs on the run: Genetically modified organisms are chased out of town
From the European Union...
Green Member of the European Parliament (MEP) Caroline Lucas referred to the results of farm trials on genetically modified (GM) crops as another nail in the GM coffin.
"That the trials have found GM crops threaten biodiversity is no surprise-and should mean the clearly expressed wish of most Britons to keep the crops out of the UK becomes a reality," said Dr Lucas. "These findings come hot on the heels of news that biotech giant Monsanto is to quit Europe."
Dr Lucas called on ministers to ban GM from the UK.
"Last month?s ?GM Nation? debate showed the overwhelming level of public opposition to growing GM crops in the UK. Today?s report shows how environmentally destructive GM crops can be. The European Commission has signaled a UK-ban would not fall foul of European Union rules-the Government must now seize the moment and declare the UK a GM-free zone."
-Office of the Green MEPs
To Mendocino County...
A campaign to make Mendocino County the first in the United States to ban GM crops is brewing inside a century-old building in downtown Ukiah. Organic brew pub owners Allen and Els Cooperrider and the Mendocino Organic Network, a loose-knit group of organic consumers, companies, and farmers, collected enough signatures to put an initiative on the ballot that they hope will resonate in a region known for alternative farmers.
While the California Farm Bureau Federation backs biotechnology as a way to "improve the quality and marketability of our products and to solve environmental concerns," according to its 2003 policy handbook, Mendocino residents are vowing to keep GE contamination out of the county?s strong organic produce and beverage industry.
To Humboldt County and Cancun, Mexico
Photo by Martha Devine.
In Arcata Plaza, Humboldt Greens organize for GMO-free food while raising money to send Martha Devine (Granny Green Genes) to the World Trade Organization (WTO) Fifth Ministerial Meeting in Cancun, Mexico in September 2003 Green Party County Council members left to right are Angela Flynn, Xandra Manns, and Seer Snively.
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