Open Mic

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#DefundOPD and Friends Shut Down City Council – Demand People’s Budget

Demanding that the City Council enact a real people’s budget in the midst of a homelessness and housing crisis, instead of continuing to fund OPD’s malfeasance, outrageous overtime and wastefulness, at about 8:00 PM on Monday, June 26th, 2017 activists shut down the City Council budget meeting, some chaining themselves to the railing in front of the dais, others chanting. Eventually the Council members walked out. By state law, municipalities must enact a budget by June 30th. The City Council has apparently scheduled another meeting for Thursday, June 29th. Here’s … Continued


Oakland Privacy Newsletter – How We’re Fighting the Surveillance State.

Oakland Privacy just published its newletter. Chock full of information on what OP is doing and why they’re doing it. Articles include: Local Movements Demand Disclosure of Police Technologies – A Review. Sacramento Update – Bills in the California Legislature OP wants passed (to help protect privacy) or wants killed (because they further the surveillance state). Why I Joined OP or How I Spent My Summer For the Past 16 years. Hella Privacy – The Local Surveillance Equipment Regulation Ordinance Oakland Privacy Wants to Have Passed in Oakland, Berkeley, Richmond, … Continued


Why Do We Have to Go To Wall Street?

The Friends of the Public Bank of Oakland created this video in support of their efforts to get the Oakland City Council to invest in Oakland’s future. New long version: Shorter version: Oakland Needs a Public Bank! – Sign the Petition at – Call your Oakland City Council Member and tell them to fund the feasibility study in this years’ budget. Video by Maren Poitras Music by Broke for Free We need everyone in Oakland to heavily lobby the City Council, starting now. Be sure to talk about how … Continued


Defunding OPD.

On Saturday, May 13th, Councilperson Dan Kalb held a Town Hall on the upcoming Oakland budget. Against a backdrop of unaffordable housing, spreading homelessness and social needs, citizens confronted yet another budget where the Oakland Police consume the largest part of the General Fund, allocated a massive budget and then augmented by overtime. The Anti Police Terror Project and other groups came out in large numbers to oppose this basic contradiction, and demand an audit of the police budget and practices. Whether they made an impact remains to be seen, … Continued


A Milestone in the Fight Against the Surveillance State

A major milestone was reached in Oakland at 9:21 PM on May 9th. The Oakland City Council’s Public Safety Committee voted unanimously to have the full City Council consider a first of its kind Surveillance Equipment Regulation Ordinance. (Read more about what the ordinance will do.) If and hopefully when it is passed by the full Council Oakland will be the first City in California, and, with the possible exception of Seattle, the nation, to pass such a set of restrictions on the use of surveillance equipment. Sweating the details … Continued


You Won’t Find This in Any Universal Healthcare Legislation. But It’s There.

There are many good things you will find in universal healthcare legislation such as HR 676 and California’s SB 562. Things such as a requirement that there be no premiums, co-payments or fees; that essentially all medical conditions are covered, and a declaration of principle that every resident is entitled to health care. There is one thing you won’t find, nor are you likely to find in any future proposed legislation of the same sort. It’s not tucked away in fine print, and it’s hardly mentioned by the promoters of … Continued


Scenes From MayDay.

Protesting the Sheriff in Oakland. Protesting ICE in San Francisco. The March from Fruitvale Plaza.   County Sheriffs: No deals with ICE. No deportations. #OrganizeDefend #OaklandMayDay #MayDay — Indybay (@Indybay) May 1, 2017 Four protesters were arrested upstairs inside @ACSOSheriffs Sheriff Ahern's office early this morning#OrganizeDefend #OaklandMayDay #MayDay — Indybay (@Indybay) May 1, 2017 No Ahern! No ICE! SANCTUARY NOW! #NoBanNoWallNoRaids #sanctuaryforall — Bay Solidarity (@BaySolidarity) May 1, 2017 Sanctuary is legalization and decriminalizing migration #NoBanNoWallNoRaids #Sanctuary4all #ThisSanctuaryFightsBack — Bay Solidarity (@BaySolidarity) May 1, 2017 Criminalizing … Continued


Trust Is Not Enough: Stop Unconstitutional and Unwarranted Surveillance in Oakland.

It’s been a little over three years since the community came together to stop the DAC – the surveillance octopus Orwellianly dubbed the Domain Awareness Center. Faced with the prospect of surveillance everywhere, in schools, on the streets and online, a broad spectrum of people and organizations of every race, religion, ethnicity and political leaning came together to tell the Oakland City Council ‘NO.’ And they listened. Out of that effort came the establishment of the Oakland Privacy Advisory Commission by the City Council.  One of its mandates was to … Continued


Miguel Masso Strikes Again.

In 2012 an official investigation revealed that Officer Miguel Masso, a minute or so before he fatally shot a young man, “went into auto pilot and could no longer hear.” Knowing such, would you later hire this man to carry a gun and be involved in high-stress situations on a daily basis? Would you hire a man to serve and protect after he was sued, in part, for this: “Officer Gottlieb, Police Officer Vanhorn, Police Officer Reveron and Police Officer Masso entered his holding cell. They commenced to assault and … Continued


Stability First: A Community Of Tents and Tables; Chairs, Coffee and Camaraderie.

By Mike Zint and JP Massar The body of a homeless woman was found Saturday near Berkeley High School. She appears to have died of exposure. – Jan 15th, 2017, Berkeleyside. What does it take to get off the streets? Money? Affordable housing? Employment? Of course the answer is yes, but none of those things is the first step. The first step is stability. Stability that the housed take for granted. A lack of stability means the homeless barely survive. Figuring out how to exist with no sense of safety and security and nowhere … Continued