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We Are Stronger Together
Monday, March 27, 2023 at 10:00 am
Oregon's Natural Resources & Industries (ONRI) is sponsoring the rally to meet legislators and influencers to bring light on legislation affecting natural resource industries, their families, and their communities. https://onri.us/events
Rally at the State Capitol, Salem.

Oregon Republican Party Freedom Banquet
Tuesday, March 28, 2023 at 6:00 pm
Hosted by ORP Chairman Justin Hwang
Keynote Speaker NRA First VP Willes K. Lee
Special Musical Guest, Nashville’s Stokes Nielson
Tickets: Dinner $75 - VIP Tickets $100
Call 503-931-1756 for table sponsorship info.
Ticket Sales end on March 23, 2023
Click for tickets
Embassy Suites Portland Airport

Ways and Means Hearing
Saturday, April 8, 2023 at 10:00 am
Public hearings on the budget. Members of the public will have the opportunity to testify at each of the hearings regarding their perspectives and priorities around the state budget. To testify, members of the public will be able to access sign up links on the Ways and Means Committee's webpage on OLIS.oregonlegislature.gov
Portland Community College - PAC Auditorium, Sylvania Campus 12000 SW 49th Ave, Portland, OR 97219

Ways and Means Hearing
Friday, April 14, 2023 at 5:00 pm
Public hearings on the budget. Members of the public will have the opportunity to testify at each of the hearings regarding their perspectives and priorities around the state budget. To testify, members of the public will be able to access sign up links on the Ways and Means Committee's webpage on OLIS.oregonlegislature.gov
Newport Performing Arts Center 777 W Olive St, Newport, OR 97365

Active Shooter Response Training
Friday, April 14, 2023 at 6:00 pm
TNT Martial Arts--- Friday April 14, 2023 from 6pm-9pm. $10
Pre-Registration is mandatory, class slots are LIMITED, and in the interest of safety and security, you’ll be expected to provide your identification that matches the registration name, upon entering the training facility.
TNT Martial Arts 1982 NE 25th Ave. Suite 15. Hillsboro, Oregon 97124

NW Food Show
Sunday, April 16, 2023 at 10:00 am
Showcase your foodservice industry solutions to buyers and influencers across the Northwestern U.S. and beyond. Exhibiting at the Northwest Foodservice Show is a cost effective way to meet with hundreds of industry decision makers face-to-face and grow your business. Space is limited, so book now!


• Generate high-quality leads by sampling and/or demonstrating your products in person

• Answer questions and give tailored pitches to a diverse group of attendees over two days

• Create new connections with buyers and build on existing relationships across the Northwest


• 75% of attendees are key decision makers and have purchasing authority

• 47% of attendees have an alcohol license

• Nearly half of attendees are experiencing the Show for the first time


• 36% Restaurant / Café

• 10% Bar / Tavern

• 10% Catering

• 10% Broker

• 7% Institutions: Universities, Schools, Hospitals, Corrections

• 5% Food Carts / Mobile

• 22% Other Foodservice

The Oregon Restaurant & Lodging Association (ORLA) is the leading business association for the foodservice and lodging industry in Oregon. A not-for-profit trade organization, ORLA represents over 3,000 member units and advocates for over 10,000 foodservice locations and over 2,400 lodging establishments in Oregon.

Marla McColly - mmcolly@oregonrla.org to register for a booth today!
Portland Expo Center - Hall D - 2060 N Marine Dr, Portland, OR • April 16 –17, 2023 • Sunday, April 16: 10:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. Monday, April 17: 10:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.

Ways and Means Hearing
Friday, April 21, 2023 at 5:00 pm
Public hearings on the budget. Members of the public will have the opportunity to testify at each of the hearings regarding their perspectives and priorities around the state budget. To testify, members of the public will be able to access sign up links on the Ways and Means Committee's webpage on OLIS.oregonlegislature.gov
Umpqua Community College 1140 Umpqua College Rd, Roseburg, OR 9747

Ways and Means Hearing
Friday, April 28, 2023 at 5:00 pm
Public hearings on the budget. Members of the public will have the opportunity to testify at each of the hearings regarding their perspectives and priorities around the state budget. To testify, members of the public will be able to access sign up links on the Ways and Means Committee's webpage on OLIS.oregonlegislature.gov
Four Rivers Cultural Center 676 SW 5th Ave, Ontario, OR 97914 Note: Ontario, Oregon is in the Mountain Time Zone

Lincoln County Fair
Friday, June 30, 2023 at 5:00 pm
June 30-July 2 Lincoln County Fair
Lincoln County Commons 633 NE 3rd St, Newport, OR

St Paul Rodeo
Friday, June 30, 2023 at 7:00 pm
Small town fun, big time rodeo! JUNE 30 - JULY 4, 2023

St Paul Rodeo website
4174 Malo Avenue NE, Saint Paul, OR, United States, Oregon

Marion County Fair
Thursday, July 6, 2023 at 5:00 pm
The Marion County Fair
July 6-9
Oregon State Fair and Exposition Center 2330 17th ST NE Salem, OR 97301

Washington County Fair
Friday, July 21, 2023 at 5:00 pm
Washington County Fair


Washington County Fair
JULY 21 - 30
Westside Commons 801 NE 34th Ave, Hillsboro, OR 97124

Coos County Fair
Tuesday, July 25, 2023 at 5:00 pm
The Coos County Fair
July 25-29
Coos County Fairgrounds 770 4th St, Myrtle Point, OR 97458

Clatsop County Fair
Tuesday, August 1, 2023 at 5:00 pm
The Clatsop County Fair
August 1st-5th
Clatsop County Fair and Expo Center 92937 Walluski Loop, Astoria, OR 97103

Oregon Jamboree Music Festival
Friday, August 4, 2023 at 5:00 pm
The Oregon Jamboree is the Northwest’s premier country music festival. Nestled in the foothills of the scenic Cascade Mountains, the Oregon Jamboree is held on 20+ acre park-like setting that includes the historic Weddle Covered Bridge. The Jamboree offers a full festival atmosphere in the main venue and a more intimate concert experience on the second stage. In addition to featured headline entertainment, this event hosts RV and tent camping, merchandise vendors, food booths, beer & wine gardens, and a variety of other attractions.

Sweet Home, Oregon

Douglas County Fair
Wednesday, August 9, 2023 at 8:00 am
Douglas County Fair AUGUST 9 - 12
Douglas County Fairgrounds Complex 2110 SW Frear Street Roseburg, OR 97471

Crook County Fair
Wednesday, August 9, 2023 at 1:00 pm
Crook County Fair
AUGUST 9 - 12
Crook County Fairgrounds Prineville, Oregon

Oregon State Fair
Friday, August 25, 2023 at 1:00 pm
Oregon State Fair
Oregon State Fair & Exposition Center 2330 17th St NE, Salem, OR 97301

Pendleton Round-Up
Saturday, September 9, 2023 at 5:00 pm
The world famous Pendleton Round-Up
Pendleton Round-Up Grounds 1205 SW Court Ave, Pendleton, OR 97801

View All Calendar Events

Public School Teachers Arrested During Riots
Nothing to see here. Move on.

In a republican form of government -- where the people elect representatives to make governing decisions for them -- there is always likely to be some level of disconnect between the will of the people and the actions of those elected and hired to represent them and to execute policy on their behalf. That disconnect might even be described as a feature because it allows a buffer against the less-informed, whimsical will of the people.

However, it can never stray too far and get to a point where it is unresponsive to the will of the people. Once that happens, the outcome can never be good.

For instance, parents of students who attend Rutherford County Schools in Tennessee must agree not to monitor their child’s online classroom sessions during distance learning. County school officials asked parents to sign forms agreeing not to watch these virtual classes.

It's hard to imagine why. Educators are fond of using the excuse of lack of parent involvement -- possibly with partial justification -- for less-than-acceptable performance. They can's have it both ways and expect that parents shouldn't monitor what kids are doing during distance learning. Aren't you even more curious about what the content of the curriculum is, now?

Hannah Rose Fewster, a 24-year-old preschool teacher at the Sweet Day Community School, was arrested this week during riots. She was charged with multiple criminal offenses and released without bail. Jacob Soto, a 41-year-old band teacher in Portland Public Schools was arrested and charged with felony riot, among other things. Does anyone think that either of these two will lose their jobs? What if you don't want your child taught by either of these people? Do you think you have any choice? What if you are a taxpayer and you don't want to continue to employ such people? Do you think you'll get a reprieve?

For a movement that's ostensibly about justice, it's difficult to watch the education system hand out such injustice to parents and taxpayers.

--Staff Reports

Post Date: 2020-08-27 15:08:51

Save Our Children Plans Rally
The group is focused on raising awareness of sex trafficking

Save Our Children is planning a rally on Saturday, September 5, 2020 from 1:00 PM to 3:00 PM. The first 20 people will receive a T-Shirt free of charge with the phrase save our children. Attendees are asked to bring signs and loudspeakers. The group is hoping that this will be a really great opportunity to be seen and heard.

In a society that seems to be clamoring for justice in very loud and public ways, let's not forget those who are most vulnerable and right under our noses.

You can join their facebook group and find out more information at the link.

--Staff Reports

Post Date: 2020-08-27 13:50:21Last Update: 2020-08-27 13:18:47

Adding Up Stats
Remember something about lies, dammned lies, and statistics?

The focus on this week’s bulletin from the Oregon Health Authority and Department of Human Services is air quality tips. “We know indoor gatherings can increase the risk of spreading COVID-19, but what can we do to reduce the risk?” They say turn off your fans and open windows “to move [the hot] outdoor air inside.” If you’re ready to buy this solution, you’re being subjected to brainwashing.

To emphasize the necessity, they present the statistics for the week.

“Viral tests for COVID-19 are the most reliable way to diagnose someone with COVID-19. But what should you do if the test is negative? False negatives happen about a third of the time.” So, their reliable test has a 33% failure? Equal application says it must go both ways. So, of the 247 new “confirmed and presumptive” cases, 82 are being quarantined for no good reason, and we know the bad reason.

But wait, there is more, the report reads, “If you have been exposed to someone with COVID-19, you should quarantine for 14 days, even if you don’t have symptoms.” So, if you go out in a crowd, give up your life for two weeks and self-quarantine just in case you got to close to someone that didn’t quarantine themselves.

“Oregon weekly testing reports 247 new confirmed and presumptive COVID-19 cases, 7 new deaths.” The counties with the highest cases continue to be Marion (40), Multnomah (48), and Washington (38).

“Oregon’s 421st COVID-19 death is a 93-year-old woman in Lincoln County who died on August 15 in her residence. The death certificate listed COVID-19 disease or SARS-CoV-2 as a cause of death or a significant condition contributing to death.” No positive test, no exposure, what age do you die of natural causes? The remaining six deaths all listed underlying conditions, and had tested positive. They were ages 93, 66, 87, 68, 71 and 63.

Do these reports strengthen your confidence in how Oregon is handling the COVID-19 outbreak?

--Donna Bleiler

Post Date: 2020-08-26 18:23:30Last Update: 2020-08-26 18:50:21

State Legislators Call Out OSHA’s Injustice
Request a reconsideration of fines

Representative E. Werner Reschke (R-Klamath Falls), Representative Vikki Breese-Iverson (RPrineville), and Senator Dennis Linthicum (R-Klamath Falls) strongly object to the nearly $10,000 in fines imposed by OSHA (Oregon Safety and Health Agency) against Howard Drugs in Lakeview, Oregon. OSHA found Howard Pharmacy out of compliance with the Governor’s mask mandate orders. This case was reported on in the national media. These legislators represent the citizens of Lake County and are concerned with the apparent lack of due process exhibited by OSHA.

“This presumption of guilt and judgement is outrageous. OSHA’s ruling is incongruent with their own rules, allowing a business to accommodate for those who have a medical condition that precludes them wearing a mask. This action has very little to do with slowing the spread of the Coronavirus. It is more of the Governor’s plan to serve her revenge cold and slow,” said Senator Linthicum.

Representative Reschke stated, “There is no proof of harm having been done by Howard Drugs. They followed the rules. These ”preventative fines” are an overreach by state government. There was likely more exposure of COVID-19 to the Lake County community by the inspectors who came to Lakeview, from outside the area, than any chance of the spread by Howard Drugs.”

“Howard Drugs is the only pharmacy in Lake County. If this fourth-generation business were to close, the next nearest pharmacy is 90 miles away. It would be like closing all pharmacies in Portland and telling residents they had to drive to Eugene to fill their prescriptions,” explained Representative Breese-Iverson. Together, these state legislators said they will contact OSHA to request a reconsideration of the fines.

--Staff Reports

Post Date: 2020-08-26 08:45:36

Hospital Capacity Stable Statewide
This metric was once cited as the reason for lockdowns

As reported by the Oregon Health Authority, Oregon's hospital bed capacity is stable in every region of the state. The charts below show how many hospital beds are available and being used. This data does not show the maximum capacity of hospitals. If more patients needed to be hospitalized, hospitals could increase the number of beds in a variety of ways, including adding staff and/or equipment, repurposing other types of hospital beds, and postponing or cancelling elective procedures.

Oregon maintains a database of hospital capacity which collects this kind of information called Oregon's Hospital Capacity Web System (HOSCAP). Early in the COVID-19 outbreak, hospital capacity was cited as a major reason for extreme lockdown measures.

--Staff Reports

Post Date: 2020-08-26 08:27:59

Flags To Be Flown At Half-Staff to Honor Fallen Oregon Marines
After days of pleas from Representative Bill Post and others to do so

In response to the urging of State Representative Bill Post (R-Keizer), Governor Kate Brown ordered all flags at Oregon public institutions to be flown at half-staff tomorrow in honor of two fallen Oregon Marines, Lance Corporal Jack Ryan Ostrovsky of Bend, and Lance Corporal Chase D. Sweetwood of Portland. The two Oregon Marines were among nine service members, eight Marines and a Sailor, who lost their lives in an amphibious vehicle accident off the coast of San Clemente Island, California on July 30, 2020. Flags should be lowered to half-staff from sunrise to sunset on Wednesday, August 26.

"These two young men, Lance Corporal Jack Ryan Ostrovsky of Bend, and Lance Corporal Chase D. Sweetwood of Portland, showed incredible honor, bravery, and dedication to the state, to their country, and as Marines," Brown said Tuesday. "My heart goes out to their families and loved ones for their tremendous and unexpected loss. Dan and I extend our sincere appreciation for their service."

--Ben Fisher

Post Date: 2020-08-26 07:00:57Last Update: 2020-08-26 08:16:46

Worries of Excessive Covid Mandates in Oregon
Kate Brown threatens more restrtictions on businesses

Last week, Governor Kate Brown hosted a press conference where she threatened that Oregonians must follow her additional arbitrary COVID-19 rules or she will likely institute unconstitutional travel bans and shut down Oregon’s economic drivers, such as restaurants, again.

“Despite admitting that Oregon has one of the lowest COVID-19 morbidity rates in the country, Governor Brown wants individuals and businesses to do more, give more and surrender all,” said Senator Dennis Linthicum (R-Klamath Falls). “The story about keeping COVID under control is a false narrative used to accomplish the real goal: to control all aspects of Oregonians’ lives and crush the economy by forcing compliance. Citizens are already reeling from their sense of powerlessness after the unnecessary and life-shattering edicts by the governor.”

In the face of what the science and data shows about the tragic and costly results from economic lock-downs, Governor Brown has camouflaged government overreach under the pretense that COVID is treacherous for every person, in every walk of life and in every community. Agencies like OR-OSHA are planning on enforcing new rules on top of pre-existing mandates, which will eventually stomp out independent business and free enterprise, on the road to growing government and robbing citizens of their inalienable rights.

“Governor Brown’s actions are the brutal part of the story,” said Senator Linthicum. “The forced closures and mandated distancing requirements are deeply immoral and dangerous. The governor’s malfeasance is driving preventable economic wounds deeper into Oregon’s already struggling communities. It is past time to re-open Oregon and now is the time to Keep It Open.”

--Ben Fisher

Post Date: 2020-08-25 18:53:43Last Update: 2020-08-25 12:00:57

Meme of the Week
Technology doesn’t fix everything.

--Northwest Observer Meme Team

Post Date: 2020-08-25 13:09:42

Voter Fraud: Vote by Mail
Vote-by-mail may enable voter fraud.

Editor’s note: this is the first of a multi-part series on Oregon’s mail-in ballots.

President Trump gave Susan B Anthony a complete pardon for being convicted for voting in 1872. She risked her life to vote. What would she think today of marchers in DC demanding vote-by-mail to replace voting at the polls? Protesters shout on the crowded streets that due to the pandemic their health is threatened if they go to the polls to vote. Isn’t that a rather baffling demand coming from people that are not practicing social distancing during their protest? What is the real reason they are demanding vote-by-mail?

There are many examples from across the country of how vote-by-mail enables voter fraud.
Janice Dysinger, Oregonians for Fair Elections, says the problem with mail-in ballots in Oregon is the registration. “We have seen specific non-citizens say they are not a citizen at DMV, decline to register, only to find they have been registered to vote.” She has worked with others to identify and document voters whose registration was changed without their permission. The Secretary of State denies it, but more people are coming forward having received the wrong ballots or no ballots because their party was changed when doing business at DMV. She stresses that you must check your voter registration before every election, especially if you have done business with DMV.

Dysinger reports that the Human Services Department’s training document instructs their agents to fill out a declination SEL503 form for every person coming into the office to document that they were asked to register to vote. If they don’t ask, they are considered a problem employee. The training manual instructs the agent not to send in the applicant’s ID with the voter registration card to the election’s office, if the ID is from out of state. That it is not the duty of the agent to determine the applicant’s eligibility to vote. Some have language barriers and the position is that it isn’t their job to find out if they are qualified. If they want to register, they say they have to treat them all the same. Even if it’s only partly filled out, they still submit it to the election office.”

Oregon’s rules say that if someone gives their name, birth date and address so they can be sent a ballot, they are agreeing that they are qualified so are registered to vote. Dysinger says “once they are on the voter rolls it is very difficult to find out if they are a citizen or not. The rules are so loose that they can put down any street or cross street or landmark as an Oregon address, and have the ballot mailed to anywhere in the world. It’s a systemic problem with our voter rolls. Anyone from another state or country can register to vote without any ID or documentation using the FVAP.gov application,” which she points out does not meet the Oregon Constitution requirements. She also points to a problem in the Oregon Revised Statutes, ORS 247.035, which says the person only needs to think of Oregon as their home, where they intend to move someday.

The big problem with mail-in ballots all over the country and in Oregon are mistakes made when marking the ballot. In Oregon about 0.35% of voters don’t sign their ballot return envelope.

Dysinger points to problems with executing selecting candidates on the ballot, problems with the signatures, and then you have problems with the post office only delivering 95% of the ballots. Five percent of voters is enough to swing an election.

In the early 90’s, Kate Brown ran for State Representative and won her race by only 7 votes. If just 8 more people had voted for her opponent, we would most likely not have Kate Brown as Oregon’s Governor today. In the 2018 primary, HD 53 was won by just 2 votes.

You can sign a White House petition asking President Trump to stop mail-in voting.

--Donna Bleiler

Post Date: 2020-08-25 09:05:35Last Update: 2020-08-25 13:56:12

Opinion: Who Should Balance Risk and Reward for You?
Every once in a while, common sense pops up

It isn’t every day that someone from Pennsylvania makes me look at things in a new way, but that’s what happened to me recently. State Representative Jesse Topper represents Pennsylvania’s 78th District. Rep. Topper was speaking about high school football.

I don’t know about you, but when someone from rural Pennsylvania speaks about high school football I pay attention. Other than mining coal, there aren’t a lot of other things to do in rural Pennsylvania. Topper, who coaches football at Bedford High, had the following to say

I’ve had the opportunity to watch this football team at Bedford prepare for this year. And we told them, wear your mask, social distance at meetings, split your time in the weight room. They’ve done all those things. We’ve said if you follow these protocols you’ll have the opportunity to play.

To now come back to them and say, “You’ve done everything right; but you know what we still don’t have the will to let that happen.” And I think back to those words “It’s not worth the risk.”

We know, must of us up here have either played or been a part of athletics, we understand that there is inherent risk to what we do. That’s why there is an ambulance that sits out by the football fields on a Friday night. We know that there is risk.

But always that risk/benefit reward ratio has always been left to the families—to determine is this worth the physical risk. Well, I don’t see any difference in that now.

Those comments struck a chord with me, and I suspect they will with many Oregonians. Maybe I’m just lucky, but if it wasn’t for the hysterical news coverage, the unprecedented erosion of our civil liberties, and our economy being shut down, I’m not sure I would actually know that COVID-19 is ravaging our country.

Tragically, some of our elderly neighbors in Mount Angel have passed away...as people tend to do when they get old. Dying is the risk of living.

We’ve seemed to have lost sight that life is about balancing risk and reward. Reasonable people don’t take foolish risks, but they also understand life without risk is impossible.

Once upon a time, Americans lived their lives understanding that risk is everywhere. But they also saw reward everywhere. Somehow, we’ve become afraid of risk and reward. We have allowed politicians of both sides to stoke our fears—deciding for us where we can go, whom we can meet, and how we can worship.

The problem with politicians is that they’ll take all the power we’re willing to give them.

I stumbled across an interesting word the other day: Kakistocracy. It means “government by the least competent.” In Oregon and throughout our country, we have given a Kakistocracy unprecedented control over our lives. But it appears that politicians are as incapable of fixing our problems as they are uninterested in trying.

For obvious reasons, social scientists had to come up with a word to describe out-of-control corruption, incompetence, inefficiency, and indifference. They call it governmentality. But every once in a while, common sense pops up, even among Republicans; so I’ll give Rep. Topper the last word:

Quite frankly, when the governor was out in a protest in the streets of Harrisburg he was asked, “Did you follow your own protocols?” He goes, “No I didn’t because I felt the cause was worth the risk.”

Well we cannot just allow one person in Pennsylvania to discern for everyone which causes are worth the risk and which are not. That decision needs to be left up to parents and up to families. Is it worth the risk? I believe that in my case it is, maybe some other people don’t; but at the end of the day if we’re going to leave that decision only up to one person then we have a problem that is far greater than COVID-19.

Dan Crowe is from Mount Angel. His wife decides the right balance of risk and reward for him.

--Dan Crowe

Post Date: 2020-08-24 19:48:46Last Update: 2020-08-17 20:20:49

Undercover Journalists Sue Oregon
Criminalization of journalism strikes at the exercise of the First Amendment

Project Veritas sued the state of Oregon in Federal court to declare provisions of the draconian state recording law as unconstitutional. The challenge to Oregon’s undercover journalism ban found in Section 165.540 names Multnomah County District Attorney Michael Schmidt and Oregon Attorney General Ellen Rosenblum as the two defendants.

James O’Keefe, the CEO and founder, established Project Veritas in 2011 as a non-profit journalism enterprise to continue his undercover reporting work. Today, Project Veritas investigates and exposes corruption, dishonesty, self-dealing, waste, fraud, and other misconduct in both public and private institutions to achieve a more ethical and transparent society.

According to O'Keefe, “We are seeking to strengthen watchdog journalism by overturning an unconstitutional law criminalizing the kind of corruption-exposing journalism which holds the powerful accountable across the country.”

The challenge to Oregon’s undercover journalism ban found in Section 165.540 names Multnomah County District Attorney Michael Schmidt and Oregon Attorney General Ellen Rosenblum as the two defendants.

Section 165.540 bars individuals from obtaining or attempting to obtain the whole or any part of a conversation by means of any device, contrivance, machine or apparatus, whether electrical, mechanical, manual or otherwise, if not all participants in the conversation are specifically informed that their conversation is being obtained.

“Imagine the Statesman Journal or the Oregonian’s coverage of Portland’s violent and destructive protests if they were able to record deep inside the civil unrest and expose who is really behind the violence. By denying the right to record, Oregon bans the most effective means of gathering the news,” O’Keefe said.

“We made First Amendment history with our legal victory in Massachusetts federal court, when the judge struck down that state’s multiple-party consent laws for recording public officials conducting the public’s business and we are now trying to restore the First Amendment to Oregon,” O’Keefe said.

O’Keefe asserted that the current law places citizen journalists in physical jeopardy given the proclivity of both police officers and protestors to engage in violence directed at journalists during heated times.

The lawsuit states:

“But for Oregon recording law, PVA would investigate allegations of corruption at the offices of the Oregon Public Records Advocate and the Public Records Advisory Council. In 2019, Oregon’s Public Records Advocate resigned due to alleged pressure from or mismanagement by Governor Kate Brown. But for section 165.540, PVA would investigate this issue and secretly record interactions with the Advocate, his staff, and members of the PRA Council in: (a) open-air cafes in Portland, (b) public parks, (c) on sidewalks, and (d) in other public areas. If secret recording is not achievable, it would utilize open recording in these same circumstances. Specifically, the project would examine whether the Advocate and Council operate impartially or with pressure from the Governor. These methods of newsgathering are all illegal under section 165.540.”

The lawsuit goes into more detail about the current how Project Veritas could focus investigations in Oregon on the dramatic rise in violent protests in Portland between the police and members of Antifa and other fringe groups, stating:

“…Some newspaper reports suggest that Portland police have been ordered to stand down and to not engage protestors, even when they act violently or damage property. This investigation involves four distinct sets of reporting activities:

Ben Barr, one of the attorneys filing the lawsuit, said, “Oregon law currently makes it a criminal act to record a protest, or an interview, or nearly any other interaction without clear and conspicuous notice to anyone whose voice might be recorded.”

Barr said this criminalization of journalism strikes at the exercise of the First Amendment.

“The courts have used this law to endorse the arrest of a citizen who held a camera, warned the person he was filming that he had them on camera, but didn’t specifically warn the camera captured audio,” he said. “It is absurd. But more importantly, it is unconstitutional.”

Jered Ede, the chief legal officer for Project Veritas, said while the Oregon laws offer very limited opportunities to openly record, the law is suspiciously under and over inclusive.

“Oregon stands at odds with a vast majority of states which permit undercover journalism, with the United States Constitution’s guarantee of freedom of the press, and with decades of legal Supreme Court rulings deeming laws such Oregon’s unconstitutional,” said Ede.

--Staff Reports

Post Date: 2020-08-24 17:11:41Last Update: 2020-08-24 17:33:38

Opinion: Another Kind of Violence
This assault to our legislative process should be concerning to every Oregonian

We are all too familiar with the senseless violence happening on the streets of Portland each night. I commend the local police, Oregon State Police and Federal Agents who have done their best to protect property and people, given the political handcuffs they must wear. It takes men and women of real character to face adversity and chaos night after night, knowing the work of keeping the peace is a dangerous job, being also despised by some.

Currently, there is another kind of violence occurring in Salem, 50 miles south of Portland. It is not the kind of violence with rocks, fire, lasers or graffiti, however this violence is just as destructive to our way of life. In the last two years, the Democrat-led legislature has passed highly controversial bills — bills that Oregonians voted against. While controversial bills are nothing new, the strong-arm process in which these bills move through the State Capitol is alarming.

Our state’s legislative system is designed to be methodical, open and transparent. It is actually hard work to pass a bill into law, as the process should be. A bill is introduced by a legislator, discussed in committee, amended, passed out of committee and then debated and voted on the chamber floor. The process repeats itself all over again in the other chamber. Finally, when a bill is passed by both the House & Senate, it is signed by the Governor. This can often take several weeks or months. At any point along the way a bill may lose the support necessary to get to the next step. The design of this slow and deliberate process has two main purposes. First, it gives the public the ability to understand what is being discussed and to get involved by directly testifying in person during a public hearing, or by contacting their legislators with their support or opposition. Second, this process protects the minority opinion, giving it a real voice — a voice which can often spawn amendments to improve the bill, or conversely may stop the bill outright.

Controversial bills will garner the attention of Oregonians who wish to give their opinion during a public hearing. The practice of limiting testimony to two or three minutes in committee, which has become all too common, is wrong. People from my district, 200-300 miles away, will spend 5-6 hours driving to Salem in order to express their opinion on a bill that will directly impact their business or way of life — and they are only given 180 seconds to speak. This is not a process that rightly hears the people’s concerns. Rather it’s merely going through the motions, checking a box. If a committee chair plans on hearing a controversial bill, that chair should plan the committee’s schedule accordingly to hear everyone's full testimony. Extremely short time limits discourage the public from being involved, and does great damage to the very idea of a “public hearing”.

Furthermore, given the State of Emergency and Executive Orders we are currently under (which I oppose), the special legislative session held this past June was closed to the public — the public was not allowed into the Capitol. The legislature was open for business, but closed to the public. Public testimony was not allowed in person, only through remote kiosks outside on the Capitol steps. This limited testimony was demeaning as people were reduced to a tiny square on a screen. Drastic changes to public testimony has cut off a key component of the legislative process — effective and direct public input with legislators.

August featured a one-day, 15-hour marathon special session. This time no public input was allowed. None. Think about this for a moment. No direct public input was allowed on budgets or bills. The majority party has been abusing the legislative process over the past few years: Dropping complicated 100+ page major bill amendments at the 11th hour, not giving the public, or legislators time to read, analyze and properly understand proposed changes.; moving bills from one committee, which has expertise to discuss a bill, to a committee with no such expertise in order to obfuscate knowledgeable opposition.

Now there is talk of a third special session in September. The trend of limiting, and even blocking, public input is not good government. The silent violence happening to our legislative process, where minority points of view are not given proper time to organize and speak out, tears apart the fabric of our government of, by and for the people. The process matters, as it protects the people from the overbearing power of its government. This assault to our legislative process should be concerning to every Oregonian who deserves to be heard and desires to live free.

--State Representative E. Werner Reschke

Post Date: 2020-08-24 16:02:38Last Update: 2020-08-24 17:36:02

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