Friday, January 23, 2009

Notes from Thanksgiving Council

I apologize in advance for the readability (or lack there of) of these minutes. This is how I got them so have at it. I've xxx'd out gatherer's names since I don't have permission to publicily post them.

************BEGIN THANKSGIVING COUNCIL MINUTES**************

THANKSGIVING COUNCIL 2008
November 27-29 TRES PIEDRAS NEW MEXICO


Reported By RXXX GXXX:

We met and talked all afternoon Friday and Saturday (November 28+29.) Almost 30 people present (listed below.) On Saturday, KENDALL CLARK, Forest Supervisor of the Carson N.F., sat + listened + talked with us for 2 or 3 hours.

I have condensed + edited a lot, as follows:

Comments on a given topic I have put together, wherever voiced. If Kendall of the F.S. was present, I have worked the comments with [→] in the left margin, so readers can know what went down with the F.S. present, and what was just among our group.

Present at times were: IXXX BXX; JXX; AXXX; RXXX; LXX; GXXX SXXXX; AXXX MXXX; SXXX; Me (RXXX GXXX); PXXX; JXXX: MXXX; CXXXB; BXXX; TXXX HXXX; DXXX; OXXX TXXX; FXXX; SXXX BXXX ; SXXX; SXXX: CXXX; AXXX; AXXX DXXX; GXXX BXXX; SXXX WXXX WXXX; SXXX PXXX; DXX; SXXX HXXX; RX; AXXX; Coyote JXXX (MXXX); SXXX SXXX; VXX; 2 RXXXX; KXX; JXXX; DXXX.
(Not all these were present at the same time.)

We met at FXXXX's place. Although he did not actually appear at council we all owe him a big THANK YOU, FXXXXX! WE LOVE YOU!

In general: most of us seemed very pleased at the same calm and order of the discussions, without a feather or focalizer. Exceptions noted below.

KEY:

☼ = Consensuses
→ = Comments with FS present
~ = New Topic

CONSENSUSES REACHED (by silence):

☼We will hold a SCOUT COUNCIL on May 1, and another on June 1.

☼ The MAY 1 SCOUT COUNCIL will take place near LITTLE DRY CREEK, in the GILA N.F., in S.W. New Mexico.

☼ We will hold SPRING COUNCIL on June 10th.

☼At the Gathering in June and July, a DAILY MEETING will take place between F.S. RESOURCE people and RAINBOW people. This will be at an ACCESSIBLE COMMON SPACE at RAINBOW MID-MORNING.

☼ Office/ Banking council point of contact is P.O. BOX 251, TRES PIEDRAS NM, 87577. There are volunteers to coordinate the effort.

☼ We agree to HONOR ALDO LEOPOLD and his works on behalf of Mother Earth. We encourage everybody to continue his vision and works.

After an OM and a preliminary round of a white feather (which we used loosely), GXXXX BXXXXbegan with a lovely image:

Our world Rainbow movement as a green tree. The growing tips are the gatherings in new and especially war-torn areas: Bosnia, Turkey, Cambodia, etc. At these “buds� kids teach kids new ideas. We are the “trunk: and “tap roots� source of many trends- Recycling, Silence, peace activism, clean-up etc.

☺ SET-UP, P.R., etc.

☺ PRESS- Hostile and / or bad press caused much IRE. GXXX SXXXX (G.S.) called for a satellite linked news network, for quick release of videos. RXX SXXX (of CO.) would help.

SXXXX BXXX spoke on behalf of FXXXX. A “Press Crew� already exists! A 3 page news letter is available. Email Address: rpcreww@gmail.com
Website is: mobilebroadcastnews.ning.com/profile/presscrew

Summary of newsletter:

Objective: to get “main stream cameras� to any incident BEFORE attacks and harassment occur. It is hoped this would be a deterrent. A network of “passionate volunteers� expects to make a daily report + get it to town + on the net.

Press escorts to give tours of our beauty, sports, etc. Past actions in Pinedale + Elsewhere of this crew were cited much good publicity. Past failures need for onsite volunteers with camera – typers – etc.
>

→ Finally, in the presence of Kendall Clark (K.C.), the F.S. rep., Garrick suggested we pre-exempt wild statements by sheriffs etc., by a JOINT PRESS RELEASE with the F.S. RESOURCE people sometime.

→ this idea met with general approval (Not a formal consensus.)

~ FRONT GATE

Many voices deplored harassment and drunkenness at front gate. SXXX WXXX WXXX (SWW) offered his yurt for gate use; GXXXX offered to spend at least some time, in the yurt.
He hoped RXXX RXXX would be around to work the gate like last year. (RXX are you out there?) They’d pass out rap 107 and 701, etc. SWW also wanted a camp with GOATS SET UP near Kid Village (Ho-o-o!)

Cascadas pointed out a need for more Doctors and healers.

A TOWN MEETING was discussed; they’ve worked well in the past. GS and others offered to help, we don’t yet know if we will go south to the Gila, or North to the Carson. GB suggested 2 meetings, say in Silver City or Reserve and TAOS, sometime next spring; (April?) but only with fire, hospital, and emergency personnel (at first)

→ A need was felt to meet with local Hispanic people, sooner the better. We want to avoid an incident like ’95, when IXXX de VXXXand a bunch of Chicano loggers and activists came to us angry. Hospitality barely prevented hostility.

→ Our friend and lawyer Coyote JXXX MXXX (JM) recalled how he had heard one of de VXXX’ people say “We’re gonna shoot some rainbows.� He (JM) called Congressman Tom Udall; a mediator came out; etc. (There’s a lot more to this story.) Point is; we don’t want a repeat; and, lawyers with connections can FORESTALL problems, by their mere presence. (See more on this below.)

~OFFSITE PROJECTS/NEEDS

AXXXX DXX (AD) had a lot to say. He’s been busy, and he brought news from all over: From LOUISIANA: FXXX is there with a kitchen feeding many, many people. FELIPE is there too. Hurricane Ike’s damage is widespread.

CURRENT NEED: A storm lashed Low Island Is inhabited by a small group of “HUMMA� people in damaged houses. Officials want to move them off island to DRILL FOR OIL. They need VOLUNTEERS to hold the land, rebuild, and maybe to bring supplies by boat. [Contact #??] (Blockade runners? RG)

AD: A brother, STEVE KUBLIN, was MURDERED between Nov 8-11, 2006. He was known as a “gentle soul� who hitched to Thanksgiving councils etc. His body was found beside a Colorado highway not far from Paonia. We have offered a reward of $5,000.00 for info on the killer. An anonymous source has fingered a 23-year-old Paonia man, Jeremy Hodges, who has been arrested. If this bust proves valid, we would like to reward this anonymous source; Pledges of $ are being collected; send no money now, but please pledge something, via 970-252-4023 the idea is: It should be known;

WE ALWAYS FOLLOW UP.
WE NEVER FORGET.

And it will PAY WITNESSES to help us.

GS; Our brother SXXXX is sick, may be dying. He has worked for us long and hard. Please call him and let him feel part of us. 916-XXXX

~ SHANTISENA

Our hard-working shantisena team is sorely taxed.

AD: Death Camp is testing us. They’re a disruptive group – Why? Are they being paid to dog our steps? If not, they surely act that way. Their acts – swearing, shouting, attacking, squirting urine on passersby – are kids saying “help me.â€�? (Several other cases discussed.)

RG and others urged shantisena help in towns, not just to pay off shops for shoplifters as in the past, but also to prevent or nab shoplifters, especially AFTER gathering, to warn our people of “bad apples� and to gain good will.

GS; In Oregon, we caught shoplifters who were locals, and showed the sheriff something about his town and us. AD; If you see a shoplifter, you can make a citizens arrest – but here’s how: Cops don't like being superseded. Be prepared to be arrested yourself. Work in a group so you will get out quick. But be prepared to be busted. In the forest itself (said AD) he has never been busted (for a citizen’s arrest)

A need was felt for more young shantisena. Peaches (a young man), GB, GS, etc. gave examples. Much discussion:

- We need to calm angry people

- We can stop a group ( like Death Camp ) easier than an individual

- Decisions of council are not always followed through – why?

- Front gate has an important role to play

SXXXX (DXXX LXXX) spoke on the need for cameras ( with respect of course ). He wants to make a movie about Rainbow – and his vision of Rainbow. Sharp also writes and rides: he writes for ABATE, a newsletter for motorcyclists. He sees a lot in common between riders and Rainbows, and suggests a camp for them at Gatherings. Call SXXX at 845-XXXX, re ‘cycling or a groovy movie.

~ FOREST SERVICE and LEGAL ISSUES

(DISCLAIMER: this part was most contentious, and impassioned. Please forgive lacks of selectivity and objectivity, of your scribe – me. This was hard to get. )

~PERMIT issues and LEGAL OFFENSE

Friday we discussed much among ourselves;

Permit history (GB, AD, etc.);

3 years (2003-05) we had a signed permit –with massive problems each year. ’03, GB signed – there was harassment on many LEO fronts, and too many demands on the signer (who kept records of the whole thing admirably.) In ’04, a “ghost signerâ€� was used – a woman in Florida signed, and never showed up or contacted FS. Harassment continued. Such a signer is liable to a civil suit, we feel. So we haven’t used a “ghost signerâ€�. So in ’06 and ’07 we used an “operating planâ€�, an unsigned alternative which is allowed for under regulations. An O.P. is not a permit – it is a voluntary agreement between equals (Rainbows and FS), and still there was harassment, and it has tended to escalate – as at Wyoming, in the Kid Village.

FXXX: was present Friday – in ’07, he signed a permit for a regional Colorado gathering, which was not harassed like our simultaneous New Mexico “eventâ€� (whether Rainbow or not – see SP below), which was busted – 12 went to jail. GS challenged signing as putting him and others in jeopardy. FXXX said a signer is not made a “leaderâ€�; a permit can be good. In CO ’06 etc, the O.P. needed changes, and finding a council to change it was maddening to FS Resource officers like Tom Florich of WY. (Thus our CONSENSUS, see above, to meet daily onsite with FS Resource.) In our Oct ’08 meeting, Corbin Newman, Regional Forester, again asked for a signed permit so all this is not moot. CN cited “accountabilityâ€�

OXXX TXXX (OT), from Denver, proposed a lawsuit on the basis that we are a PUBLIC event, which “theyâ€� (FS) treat as a PRIVATE event. OT: FS regulations call us a “non-commercial group eventâ€�, which is a PRIVATE event. Therefore (say the FS), they may regulate us, AND, they need not supply certain services which they are obligated to provide to the public – the PEOPLE. An example would be handicap access parking [OT was involved in providing such access in CO gathering; Fred also was; many voices discussed the need for better HANDICAMP access, scouted early.]

OT wants to make a lawsuit on this point: that his, and our rights are violated by being called private.

GB: Historically, courts have rejected (in 1980), our being defined as a class (which can sue or be sued, for instance) because a class is a part of the human race; the whole race is not a class. Later (said GB) they defined us as an “unincorporated association�. RG questioned OT; “what if we don’t want the services the FS “must� provide?� “Would we be obligated?� OT had a 2 page handout on this lawsuit and a LOT of more info and ideas.

OT: Legal actions and protests distract the cops/LEO’s; they also make good publicity. Wheelchairs look good to media. GS: With JM (lawyer), GS is making a lawsuit to force the FS to obey their own regulations: in CFR 251 & 261 (Somewhere) an alternative to a signed permit, such as an “operating plan� (O.P.), is allowed. Elsewhere in the regulations the FS is compelled to use the “least restrictive� alternative; thus since O.P.’s have been accepted, they must be allowed in future. GB: If we have been “targeted�, this applies (“least restrictive�). GB etc. said an O.P. did not guarantee no harassment. GB: We need an ACLU camp, and a press group. The renegade bunch of LEO’s out of Atlanta are still likely to harass us.

~FOREST SERVICE RELATIONS

→ When Kendall Clark of the Carson NF arrived Saturday. She was deluged with complaints, of harassment. (see below under LEO’s) But first she introduced herself.

→ KENDALL CLARK may be reached at 575-758-6200 or at www.fs.fed.us She (KC) is a calm stately grey – haired lady of great dignity. She was attentive and responsive, spiritual at times (This sister is COOL, family, - RG.) She took notes, a few.


THE CHAIN OF COMMAND goes: US DEPT. of AG. Head
(Sec’y) ↓
USDA Undersecretary for
National Forest MARC REY
(Outgoing)
↓
CORBIN NEWMAN
Regional Forester- NM., AZ.,CO., UT.
__________________________________________

etc ↓------↓--------↓--------------↓---------------------------------↓

JACKIE
NANCY
DICK MARKLEY
KENDALL CLARK
Lincoln NF
Cibola NF
GILA NF
Forest supervisor – Carson NF
↓
Deputy FS DAN RAEL
↓
“DISTRICT RANGERS�
/ ↓ \

TRES PIEDRAS TAOS Etc.

B. ROMERO

The District Rangers, although they appear they appear low in this chart, actually have a great deal of power at their local level.

Notice the LEO’s (Forest Service Law Enforcement Officers) do not appear on the chart. They are a separate hierarchy;

DC head JOHN TWISS (resigned)
↓
PANCHO SMITH, NM head LEO
>
> ↓

B. MALDONADO, D. CHAVEZ, B. McCORMACK etc. – LEO’s (who busted us in ’07)

KC has only been on this job 4 months, but has lived in → TAOS area 2004-06. (RG complained, why do we always have to deal with new Resource personnel? We can’t discuss past offenses. Yet the same LEO’s dog us and know us too well.) (and new blood thinks anew, new broom sweeps clean. RG.)

~LEO’s and HARASSMENT

Before KC arrived there were some more legal strategies discussed:

GB: we can file an “INTENT TO SUEâ€� on any likely harassment – this can forestall their actions. But we have to have current in-the-field evidence. It worked in NV ‘89

GS, GB etc.: MARC REY, USDA Undersec’y, is rumored to be plenty angry about what happened in WY at Kid Village, and he is allegedly initiating an investigation – by the Justice Department Inspector – General. The ACLU has also expressed interest in the case, and has drawn up some papers for us already. → Then Kendall arrived, and was questioned on the LEO’s. KC; The LEO’s work for us (Resource) – I can and do direct them.

→ GXXX SXXXXX (spoke for many): We’ve heard this too many times! (From Corbin Newman recently – RG) EVERY SINGLE TIME, the LEO’s and Incident Command TAKE OVER (voices; DISTRICT RANGERS, too!)

→GB; Yes; civilian control of the military, throughout history, is Democracy’s way

→GB; At least we are an “Incident� and not an “Emergency�

anymore – it’s better for our press coverage, and the money is better spent ( on Resource matters).

→TXXX; But, what about the FIRE set on us in WY, and the EVACUATION ORDER that caused needless panic? People abandoned their goods - - -

→PXXXX; Yeah, and we heard some of their fire crew

→LAUGHING at us, for being duped and forced out!!

→BXXX; If there’s another LEO incident in ’09 it’ll be a nightmare

→GS: There is a HISTORY of increasing violence by the LEO’s.

In the ‘90’s, they hired “cop-typeâ€� people; then, more and more “Special Forces – Delta force typesâ€�, who were promoted to supervisors. GS saw as “INEVITABLEâ€� that BLOODSHED →would occur. (GS repeated such remarks several times. He used inflammatory language. – RG.) Then the worst; As AD was saying “ we don’t want and adversarial relationship with you (FS) … “BODHI interrupted loudly;

→â€�It IS adversarial – it comes from the LEO’s! If they come to Kid Village again there’ll be a (bleep!)! (he was shouting)

→BODHI; “I am OUTRAGED at LEO’s among our CHILDREN! And, they came after our herb, which is SACRED to us!â€� He shouts rudely – KC cannot answer – VAL stands + opposed Bodhi hi Verbally – chaos + anger – people OMMM – finally, AD resumes: “A legal al atmosphere is adversarial by nature. We want instead a HEART- TO – HEART relationship. The LEO’s have a “scriptâ€�, an agenda: to create FEAR, their best tool. Fear loses power when there is LESS for the victim to live for thus, todays street kids, seeing chaos, enviro-disaster, everywhere they have less reason to live. To make such kids afraid, LEO’s become even harsher. AD; “ Some LEO’s are willing to shoot unarmed white people.â€� “Some youth, as in Death Camp, have a subculture which PUNISHES strangers using fear.â€� (Nothing to lose. Nothing to believe in. Gang mentality – RG)

→Coyote JXXX (MXXXX) (JM): Our friendly lawyer showed up when KC did.

→JM: I’m Coyote JXXX – a lawyer from Albuquerque. I have worked with many of the State’s finest law firms including Freedman, Boyd, and Daniels – a well known and powerful firm. I have worked with the ACLU as well.

→My goal: A lawyer for every incident! For every defendant, plaintiff, victim. The place for lawyers among us is to CURB the LEO’s. (JM himself, he said, had been ticketed for a “non turn signalâ€� scam in the woods, 4 miles after the alleged offense.) If lawyers are →present, things change. For example: → JM: In ’95, he helped calm some angry Chicanos. [ see P. 4 above – RG] Lawyers scare them! If we should win a suit (see P. 9 ), or obtain a “consent decreeâ€� → The LEO’s will be compelled to take “ sensitivity trainingâ€�. (ha ha!) Also perhaps pay a fine of as much as $500,000!! This scares them. We have other allies – Alan Maestas, a lawyer of TAOS, has offered to help. (RG: Alan is known and respected by me. Highly competent, dogged, former chief Public Defender here.)

Kendall CLARK (KC): Yes. You ask, where is out authority? We don’t always know. I will have out attorneys contact JM. Also, we have a meeting scheduled on Dec. 17, 2008, in Santa Fe. Can you (JM) be present?

→JM: I will try. Have court duties that day.

~FS RESOURCE – COOPERATION efforts

→KC: I've directed flood relief – I can cooperate. “You’ll find I'm a fairly sensible personâ€�.

→KC: “I feel, the land is speaking to us�. I do not want to micromanage.

→KC: In 2009, we of the FS celebrate the 100th anniversary of the works of ALDO LEOPOLD; here in TRES PIEDRES, he built a house. This giant, father of the wildlife movement, protégé of John (Muir), is my PERSONAL HERO – he knew and loved this land, established the CARSON and GILA forests. (AD and Sheila later told us more of him; see our consensus, above, to honor him.)

→GS: What about road closures? Will you cooperate?

→KC: We use them, have power to do so – we use a permit system for stock tanks, private owners, etc.

→JACK (to KC): I was in Alturas in CALIFORNIA. I saw there that $38,000 was given to any COUNTY that got a gathering – his money tempted some. By what authority?

→KC: I don’t know, I’ll ask TOM CONTERAS (name mentioned by Jack.) (She makes notes.)

→GB: The O.P. needs to be flexible. 100% approval, as we all know, is like “herding cats�. (KC agrees (as do all)) (no “blockers�) I hate to say it, but a “coalition of the willing� gets things done.

→KC: This is very hard for us. Dan Rael told me he came daily, but often couldn’t find main council – or the people he knew weren’t there – he searched fruitlessly sometimes.

→GB: Yes, Thom Florich in WY, and B. ROMERO and others have said the same thing (discussion led to CONSENSUS RE daily meeting onsite, see above P. 3 )

→GB (and GS etc.): We hear JOHN TWISS, head LEO in D.C. lied about the Kid Village incident – blamed it on us – called us ‘rock throwers’ etc. We hear he’s leaving. Good. We also hear he may be replaced by FARRELL, a (black) LEO known to us; we generally like him.

→But if officer SMITHSON is chosen – trouble! He is nasty!

→ (GS and other agree vehemently) (KC takes notes.)

→RG: When the Obama administration appoints a new USDA Secretary or Undersecretary, we want to meet with them. KC: still probably be March or so for new personnel.

→SXXXX SXXXX: I wanna know about the bad press in ’95. There were rumors that we left a “nasty mess�. Where did this come from?

→KC: Not from us. Dan Rael never complained, nor his deputy Ben Romero – no-one complained to me. In fact for Dick and Nancy (Gila and Cibola NFS), you have a remarkable record. Ben Romero, 2-3 months after the cleanup, was amazed, and positive; he couldn’t even find “tiny piecesâ€� of trash.

~SITES

At the end of KC’s visit, we discussed sites briefly. Next morning (SUNDAY) some of us went over maps.

→KC: Of the sites we discussed ( in OCT – RG), one site north of LUNA< NM, (in the Gila), looks good to me.

→KC: It’s a flattering plateau – big pines, park-like – it’s wild and beautiful, but is there water for gravity feed (uphill)?

→GB: This area is the same “ bio-plateau� as our ’79 ARIZONA site.

→GB: RE scouting: near our ’77 NM site, N of the JCT. of the GILA and BLACK rivers, is worth looking at.

~LEGAL AFFAIRS, etc.

Saturday evening, after KC of the FS left, we continued; PEACE, GS, GB, Allis, etc:

Let's appeal to BILL RICHARDSON (NM governor, Commerce Secretary – designate). He's a possible ally.

GS: We should BEG for PROTECTION from LEO's, in person from Richardson; let's also meet OBAMA in person!

GB: I've asked FS for an inventory of possible (future) sites, and a plan to protect them – 100 sites eventually?

PEACE: I can help with the PR/press team – on the net peace@mrwebguru.com

S P (and others): In 2007, in NM late JULY there was a “Full Moon Circle Ceremony� (where 12 were arrested.) We (i.e. SP) made a permit application and refused to sign same. So the FS understood the permit issue then and there.

SP: Yet, me and my lawyer (JM) were “cut outâ€� of the subsequent negotiations – this was unfair.

SP: The event was converted into a Rainbow event. Also an OP was turned down (by LEO Maldonado et al – RG) Was this because a permit was signed in CO (by FXX?)

FRED: I simply put notices up on the web – maybe that was how FS found out about it (event in NM)

RG: By word of mouth we, (Abe, Patha, I, Bob, Tony etc.), set up event as Rainbow. I was one of 12 busted, a volunteer lawyer helped us, we didn't intend to exclude SP but simply needed to defend ourselves, with counsel that volunteered (this case could still lead to a suit, if necessary – IMHO RG)

GB: In legal matters, remember, in court or out, the right argument does not always win. For instance, when we were busted (99 PA case) Judge Samuel J. Alito said to us (before he sent us to the slammer): “Why don’t you get someone broke (“immune from suitâ€�) to sign? You help paupers, get one to help you – a broke person can't be suedâ€�. (Imagine a judge so misguided. ( a fellow Princeton grad too, tsk, tsk – RG)

GB: So, we need to ask; who's on the bench? It's relevant.

JM: Win or lose, it's Public Relations. Here in NM, ayahuasca is legal because of a decent justice system here. It's hopeful.

RG: Well that's it. I'm tired of this job but also I'm proud. We talked TRUTH AND JUSTICE. GREAT SPIRIT, help us, and thanks.

HO!

Two poems

From AXX's notes --

Tipis and Tribe
Drums and dancing
I feel their drums
I feel their wild
Tribal energy Tribal magic
Tribal Thunder
I feel their drums
I feel their wild
The call of the wild
Echoes off Tipis and Tribe
*

The morning sun reflects on snow covered mountains
Laughter lifts skyward
On cold morning air.
Winter's embrace is just
Around the corner.
Tipi smoke rises
Over sound of a tribe
Greeting cold morning air
As morning sun reflects
On snow covered mountains

4 comments:

Hovey said...

Karin,
I just found your blog about the Council and the need for more shantisena and healers...

I wanted to let you know about a group that i have been working on of late and see if we could do something for the family, as it appears from your writings a need exists....

I am from the Salt City Medix in Salt Lake City, UT. Salt City Medix is a Salt Lake based affinity group dedicated to providing free medical care at large gatherings or events in areas where rapid treatment of illness or injury may not be otherwise available—for any number of reasons.

I cannot think of a better place for our group to do this than somewhere in New Mexico this summer!

Please get in touch with me at sunshineandmonkeys@yahoo.com

Love,
Allen

baby bee said...

hey karin, i was skimming through this looking for info on where in NM the gathering is going to be? i don't think i saw it.. maybe it has yet to even be determined..

also, I'm a massage therapy student in MI and would love to be able to bring my trade for everyone to enjoy!..(i guess im just wondering if thats ok?)

:)
you can email me shor_ty05@hotmail.com
if you have any input on my questions!!

thanks sooo much!!
-bee

AndrisBors said...

where an wen ken i set up my canp, on te higher groun?

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.