Can We Learn from North Dakota the Value of a Public Bank?

This is the second in a series of article exploring issues that were identified by County Democratic Precinct Persons at the County Platform meeting

There is a publicly owned bank in North Dakota, has been for decades. It did not need a bailout during the 2008 crash because it had not engaged in reckless speculation.

If North Dakota, perhaps one of the more conservative places in the US, can have a public bank, should we? What would it or could it do? And why would we want one?

Apparently there is a national movement to protect public monies from the abuses of Wall St. Remember the Libor scandal or the housing bubble of 2008  to mention just two recent scandals that defrauded billions of dollars in fees from public accounts, including our own local and county governments. Continue reading

My View: Gun Control Laws Do Make a Difference

By Paul Kemp
(reprinted by permission of the author)

There is no denying that gun violence is a complex problem. But as a founding board member of Gun Owners for Responsible Ownership, I know there are some evidence-based steps that Oregon’s leaders can take to help the roughly 450 Oregonians who die every year from gun violence.

On the evening of Dec. 11, 2012, I planned to meet my brother-in-law, Steve Forsyth, at the Clackamas Town Center mall. That afternoon, I received a frantic call from my sister; there had been a shooting at the mall.

When I arrived on the scene, I stood alongside my sister and niece for hours before learning that Steve had been shot and killed with a stolen, unlocked assault rifle. Steve was shot while on the phone with his father. Continue reading

Clackamas County Economic Development Caught in a Time Warp?

(This begins a series of articles on public actions on the economy and focuses first on the concept of industrial planning and job creation.)

Employee-owned Bob’s Red Mill

When Clackamas County Democratic Precinct Persons met last week to begin developing our county and state issue platform, one idea gaining surprising support was creation of publicly owned banks. This is not a new idea, but one whose time has come as we look to new ways for our community to thrive and prosper. And, no, it is not the same as credit unions, already a step in the right direction.

This notion is a good example of looking at old problems with a fresh perspective. In many ways, that is a good function of lay people with a broad interest in improving their own way of life but also the lives of those around them of all stripes and economic positions. Continue reading

Progressive Film Series in Lake Oswego

independents for Progressive Action, a local group centered in West Linn-Lake Oswego-Willamette Falls area, hosts a monthly film series focused on documentaries that address social, racial, economic, and environmental justice.

Following the film they host a panel discussion and provide opportunities for audience members to get involved.

The series screens on the fourth Sunday at 6:00 pm, followed by a panel discussion. Please arrive early so you can order food and beverages for a 6 pm movie start time!

Lake Theater and Cafe
106 N. State St., Lake Oswego, OR 97034

Cost: As with all iPA events, admission is sliding scale – $0-27 with no one turned away for lack of funds. Funds will be used first to support the following month’s film with the remainder to be shared equally between a local non-profit organizations

Upcoming Films

Nov. 26th: Awake, A Dream from Standing Rock

The Standing Rock Sioux Tribe in North Dakota captures world attention through their peaceful resistance against the U.S. government’s plan to construct an oil pipeline through their land.

Jan. 28th: Charlie vs. Goliath

A 21st century Don Quixote, a 75-year-old penniless former Catholic priest and Democratic candidate for the U.S. Senate galvanizes a ragged band of young volunteers determined to make waves in Wyoming’s elections, and in so doing set a precedent for the rest of the country.

Feb. 25th: Fix It: Healthcare at the Tipping Point

This documentary takes an in-depth look into how our dysfunctional health care system is damaging our economy, suffocating our businesses, discouraging physicians and negatively impacting on the nation’s health, while remaining unaffordable for a third of our citizens.