Counter Point Journal Volume 2, Issue 1 (October 2009)


Counter Point Journal Volume 2, Issue 1 (October 2009)
October 2009
CxPJ Collective
extracted text
Vol. 2, Issue 1


Oct 2009

We're back!
by C.XPJ Editorial Colkm'1e

information. It's just a head's up, so
they're prepared to deal with a group
• At Fort Lewis, an Army intelligence report referenced the 2008 SDS sit-in outside Vice President Art Costantino's office. of people in a particular location.
Not riot stuff, not protest, so much
• Emails from Tesccrier are found in the possession of the Olympia Police and Thurston County Sherriffs, forwarded by as having enough officers available
Evergreen Police Director Ed Sorger.
to detour traffic or whatever needs to
• These revelations all surfaced through the same public records request that outed a Fort Lewis personnel as spying on be done. Those are the only kinds of
things I have shared at all with local
activist groups in Olympia and Ta<;oma.
law enforcement."
I asked Sorger about one email to
by Phan Nguyen
the US military from engaging in ci- Sherriffs Office (TCSO).
Tesccrier that he had forwarded to
vilian law enforcement actions. What
Since none of the forwarded outside police. It was an email inviIn July, a local discovery made nation- has been less publicized, however, are emails mentioned anything illegal, tation to an SDS meeting in the third
al news when "John Jacob," a partici- the portions of the records that deal I asked Sorger how he determined floor pit of the Campus Activities
pant in Olympia and Tacoma activ- with The Evergreen State College.
whether a Tesccrier posting was wor- Building. The email, originally sent
ists groups, was revealed to beJohnJ.
thy of forwarding to outside police by then-student Brendan Dunn on
Towery II, an infiltrator employed by From Tesccrier to the Olympia
November 1, 2007, stated that SDS
the us Army. Brendan Dunn, a for- and Thurston Police
According to Sorger, "The only was "having an emergency meeting
mer member of Olympia's Srudents
thing I would share with local juris- tonight to discuss responses that the
for a Democratic Society (SDS), had . The public records produced by dictions [from Tesccrier] is if there's community can have to the further
made a public records request to the Dunn's request uncovered some going to be a concern over a gather- militarization of our port."
.City of Olympia for communications emails originally sent to the Ev- ing in a particular place that could
Sorger forwarded the post to variconcerning SDS, anarchists, and the ergreen email announcement list, cause some traffic concerns or things ous commanders and chiefs of OPD
IWW. The resultant records, coupled "Tesccrier," which were then for- of that nature where, as a law en- and TCSO with the preface: "Just FYI
with investigative work, led to Tow- warded by Evergreen Police Director forcement agency, we would share for now-I will keep you posted on
ery's outing, which in turn raised Ed Sorger to commanders and chiefs that." Sorger ip.dicated that such other information as I receive it."
issues about a likely violaton of the in the Olympia Police Department information sharing was reciprocal.
Posse Cornitarus Act, which prohibits (OPD) and the Thurston County "It's not really intelligence. It's public ► PUBLIC RECORDS continues on page 4

• During the 2008 Evergreen graduation, Olympia police officers had their helmets ready in case of a riot at Evergreen.

When the CounterPoint]ournal(CxPJ)
began publication in spring 2009, the
feedback was overwhelmingly positjve. However, we did get some negative responses. Some people thought
we shouldn't criticize the Cooper
Point Journal (CPJ). Some questioned
whether the college needed another
newspaper. Some people demanded
we justify ourselves. One p_e dant
scolded us that "co'unter Point" is
one word. (Sure, and "Newsweek" is
really two words. The point is?)
Though we're not averse to constructive criticism-and we know
we have a lot to learn- the majority of complaints had less to do with
our content or process than with
our very existence. That's the starus
quo for ya. People are very dependent on the status quo as a frame of
reference and feel threatened when
things don't conform to that starus
quo. (For a much more serious example, see Tenzin's article below.)
The CPJ exists as part of the status
quo, and therefore its legitimacy is
unquestioned. The Counter Point, as a
newcomer, was treated as an intruder and judged with unique scrutiny.
"We don't need another newspaper."
"Why don't you just work with the
CPJ?" "Why do you have to be so
We created the CxPJ exactly because we weren't being served by the
starus quo, and we weren't alone.
Beginning in the spring 2009,
the CPJ banned all opinion articles
relating to the Palestine-Israel conflict. Their abtract rationale made no
sense. According to Editor-in-Chief
Jason Slotkin, the censorship was •
implemented for the sake of "inclusive discourse." (You can read all
about it in our April,2009 issue, at Even worse,
Slotkin refused to print corrections
to bold facrual errors printed in the
CPJ, including a fake quote by Martin Luther King.
The CxPJ formed in spring quarter
2009 after a number of us Evergreen
community members expressed discontent with our interactions with
the CPJ. Aside from our discontent,
we shared an additional trait: We
were all activists. Thus, rather than
lament or whine about the CPJ, we
did something about it. One month

EDITORIAL continues on page 2

Expecting safety in restrooms is presuming too_much at Evergreen
by Tenzin Mingyur Paldron

I wanted to adress this issue in spring
2009, back when this incident occurred, but in contacting the Cooper
PointJournal, I found I would be given
800 words to relate the event and the
official proceedings (which involved
letters addressed to Vice Presidents
Art Costantino and John Hurley, and
which had gone without a response
for over two months by the time I
decided to write this article in late
May). It was not enough space for the
article, and I knew I couldn't trim it
down and still explain things adequately. The other choice offered was
to break the article in two and publish it in consecutive issues. I was also
unwilling to do this. It's been a very
busy year, so it's taken me until now
to get this article published for the
start of fall quarter.
I have chosen to write aboµt my
experience and the irresponsibility
of the school in the fo rm of a public
article in hopes of getting a mature,
professional, and decent response
from an institution I graduated
from in 2008-an institution I currently represent in various aspects of
my life, including in the museums,

really changed for me. It turned out
galleries, and schools which have Ack-did someone ask me what my en's room.
choosen to screen my documentary gender identity was, nor did I state
Upon entering the women's room, she knew who he was, that he was a
work-work produced as a student one.
I heard voices, so I immediately left, staff member in one of the first floor
here. For whatever discomfort or
Given the fact that I look like a without anyone seeing me. I entered departments. This change is signifiembarrassment I feel associating man to most people, or a very queer- the men's and found it empty. Re- cant, because never in my experience
with Evergreen at present, I can only looking female, restrooms are a fre- lieved, I entered a stall and closed it. of restroom intimidation have I ever
guess that it must be beyond embar- quent place of discomfort for me. A few seconds after I started using been in a vicinity that I frequent and
rassing for ArtCostantino,JohnHur- I usually use women's restrooms the toilet, I heard someone enter. I experience the harassment corning
ley, and others in the administration because I have always felt male rest- tensed a little, but knew I'd be fine, from a person based in the same locato ignore my requests for a construc- rooms to be sources of more poten- and that I'd just wait for the person tion. It is only because of this unique
tive, open resolution to the incident I tial violence. However, almost always to leave. Oddly, I didn't hear him aspect of the incident that I had any
describe here.
when using the women's restroom- make any noises indicating that he power to address it. In the vast maI visited Evergreen in mid-Febru- since my teens and more frequently was using the facilities himself, and jority of restroom harassment cases,
ary. I was on the first floor of the
a couple moments later I felt a the target never has such a chance.
Library building, where I was
presence outside the stall door.
I did not live in Olympia, so I comwaiting for my friends to finish
"Next time, use the right re- muted from Seattle via bus a week
some errands. I needed to use a
stroom," the voice from outside later to meet with Evergreen's civil
restroom during this time. The
rights officer and give my report.
the stall said.
way I look happens to confuse
The tone was unfriendly, and She later met with the staff member
people sometimes-other times,
I experienced a menacing anger in question, and he corroborated my
they just assume I'm one of many
coming toward me. The man story, except that he said he had used
things: a straight guy, a gay lookpaused for a moment, then left. the restroom.
ing girl, or a gay man. Often
I exited the restroom shortly
Two weeks after I wrote an initial
people don't know which ohe of
afterward and luckily found my letter to Art Costantino detailing
those to choose, or I make them
girlfriend waiting outside for the entire incident-and following
uncomfortable because of my
me. I asked her if she had seen several communications with Nicole
appearance, and that's when things every year-I encounter some kind t\le man who exited, and sh e had. Ack, and after Ack filed her "report"
usually go wrong.
of problem. Usually this involves She thought it was strange because of the incident -I wrote a final letter
I would like to state that at no stares or words of some kind; some- he had literally run out the door and to Costantino, Ack, and John Hurley,
point in my dealings with Evergreen times, aggressive body language and around the corner. I told h er what abridged below:
staff members-and in particu- confro ntations. On this particular happened, and that's when this exlar with Civil Rights Officer Nicole day, at Evergreen, I chose the worn- perience of restroom intimidation

At no point in my dealings with
Evergreen staffmembers-and in
particular with Civil Rights Officer
Nicole Ack-did someone ask me
what my gender identity
did I state one.

RESTROOMS continues on page 6

2-CouQter PointJournal

October 2009

Econvergence review

Noam Chomsky: Wh_y the elites are
succeeding in their '~failure"
by Tara O'Rourlee

The first step to achieving a situa- higher education and the revolutiontion like this is to strip away democ- ary activities that have historically
Econvergence, a conference adressing racy and power from the people as been a part of that experience.
the current political, economical, and covertly as possible in order to give
Another tactic that makes it posenvironmental problems, brought the government legitimacy. This is sible for the elite to benefit from the
together Pacific Northwest activ- evident in universities across the suffering of others, Chomsky noted,
ists in Portland, from Oct. 2-4. The nation. Looking back at history, it is keeping the public as "spectators"
keynote speaker was the ubiquitous can be observed that students tend and engineering consent from the
Noam Chomsky, his presence excit- to grasp and promote democracy masses. What Chomsky referred to
ing the sold-out audience and even through protests, marches, advocacy as the "democratic deficit" (the gap
bringing the man who introduced campaigns, etc.
between public opinion -and public
him, American University eco- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - policy) grows further each
nomics professor Robin Hahyear, as we become less
nel, to tears. For a man who is
and less informed and our
eight decades old, Chomsky
government broadcasts
resonated with authority durS
superfluous crap through
ing his speech, though he used Stu ent O [}' t an t e tate, ma
our mainstream media.
humor to ease the density of
It isn't a coincidence that
information he presented.
President Barack Obama
A main theme that ran
won the Advertising Age's
collective organizing and the victothroughout Chomsky's lecture was
However, The Evergreen State "Marketer of the Year" award in 2008
the fact that even though our econo- College raised its tuition by 14% this for his presidential campaign (fol- ries collective power has won. He emphasized the importance of reclaimmy has crashed, even though Obama year and was not the only college in lowed by Nike and Coors respecing
this history and putting it to new
is doubling the amount of troops the United States to do so. For the tively).
in organizing against those who
currently in Afghanistan, even first time in Evergreen history, there
Maybe we really should "Hope" to
benefit from the crises that plague
though our world is suffering a food is more funding coming from the "Change." To do this, themasses have

crisis leaving over one billion fel- student body than the State, mak- to utilize their rights. But our popu- the rest of us.
low humans suffering from hunger ing it less of a public institution. As lation is fragmented-"atomized,"
Read more reports from the Econvergence
and malnutrition, all of these events education becomes less accessible, was Chomsky's word-by the barConference at
have factored into the success of the especially for those with a lower rage of pop-culture and pseudoleaders in control of our national and socio-economic status, fewer people politics that aims to whitewash our
international economic policies.
have the opportunity to take part in memory of this country's history of

for the first time in Evef'iyreen history,
there is more funding comi~g from the
d bd h h
k• •
less ofa public institution.

Newsflash! Evergreen student goes to Glenn Beck rally i~
Seattle with mom!
Find out what happens in the Counter Point Journal onlinel

The CxPJ is a collective ofEvergreen
community members who decided
to form a monthly alternative press
for marginalized voices.
We are always accepting submissions of articles with an emphasis on
timely, relevant, and local issues. We
specifically seek submissions that
are well researched or include interviews or comments from those who
are involved or affected by the issue being discussed. We also accept
photography, poetry, art, and other
creative works.
To submit original work, send it

Our next issue will come out on November 11, 2009. The deadline for
submissions for the November
issue is November 4.
The editorial collective reserves
the right to question, edit, or not
publish any content it receives. The
collective will make every attempt to
consult the aothor(s) in regards to
any changes proposed.
The Counter Point Journal is also available online
This issue was funded by donations and a few ads. Thanks!

Support C~unter
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Pricing guide reflects prices for one
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and get the third advertisement half

CxPJ logos by Lamise AI-Shawahin

Pay for sev_en months of advertisement and get the eighth and ninth
month free .

10% discount for all nonprofit organizations and student groups •

Summertime Fun Facts:
. On September 11, 2009, The Washington Department of Financial Institutions closed down Venture Bank, based out of Lacey, WA. The
FDIC took the institution into receivership and sold it to First-Citizens
Bank and Trust company of Raleigh, NC. Venture Bank had taken large
losses on with Collaterized Debt Obligations and stock in Fannie Mae
& Freddy Mac.

In the World Economic Forum's Global Competitiveness Report, released September 8, 2009, the United States was ranked as the second
most competitive economy in the world. This is the first time the US
was not first in the ranking, which was created in 2004.
The UK's Office of National Statistics released a report showing that
Mohammad, or a variant spelling (eg Muhammad) is the most popular name for baby boys in London. Daniel is the second-most popular
name. London joins the European cities of Amsterdam, Brussels, Copenhagen, and Oslo, where Mohammad has already established itself
as the most popular aame for newborn boys.

(Less white space than the CPJ!}

5% discounts for business owners
who are Evergreen alumni

Well, this is the first issue of the
school year, so we have nothing
to correct yet. However, we'd like
to take this time to isstle a correc•
tion on behalf of the Cooper Point

A video of the Student Activities
Fait Ofl the CPJ website featured
Tara O'Rourke, who stated db'ectly
to the camera that she wu representing the uNations Under Occu·
pation" student group. However, a
caption superimposed on the vid· •
:0 stated that she represented the
"Women of Color Coalition." It's
possible she was the only visible

woman of color featured on the
video, but she does not represent

the Women of Color Coalition.

October 2009

Counter PoiiitJournal-3

Art's Power Grab

The issue this year is who has the
right to appoint students to committees. Art Costantino seems to be
throwing his weight around and
thinking that he should make those ·
I ask, if he is a not a student and
has not been elected by students to
represent them, then how can he
pick who gets to speak for the student population?
The students should have the right
to appoint their own representation
to any and all comrnitees. Only the
next few weeks of power plays will
see who decides student voice, so
make your voice heard. You can do
this by running for a committee and
make sure to inform Art that you
won't stand for anything less than
•students picking student representation for their interests.
One can always reach Art Costantino-at his office on campus, 3rd floor
of the Library, room number 3009,
by phone (360) 867-6296 or e-mail Let your
voices be heardlll

by Tessa Wyllie de Echeverria

The student body is a diverse community, so who has the right to speak
on their behalf?
With a new school year just beginning each student must find their
place at Evergreen, their power in
the community and figure out what
Evergreen needs to do for them. After all Evergreen, like any college, is
there for the students.
With classes just starting up and
people settling back into their lives,
it is easy forget about community issues. However, if we let things slip
away ourcommunity will be formed
without student voice.
One of the most important ways
students can work in the Evergreen
system for student interest is by joining a campus committee. There are
many committees, from the Student
Conduct Code to the Campus Land
Use committee that affect all parts
of campus life. Each group in the
Evergreen community gets a seat on
these committees to improve conditions for that faction, be they faculty,
staff or students.

WhU read

EDITORIAL continued from page 1

later, we distributed our very first. this paper's existence will serve
issue of the Counter Point Journal. to prod and remind the CPJ of its
At 8-pages, issue one of the CxPJ purported duties." We regret that
contained 30% more content than this has not happened. Instead,
the 20-page CPJ printed the previ- the CPJ tried to justify its actions.
ous week (in terms of word count), It responded to our criticisms in a
and we dfd it at a fraqion of the column entitled "CPSay." UnforCPJ's budget and resources. Two tunately, CP didn't say much. It
more issues followed before the didn't cite any of our criticisms
end of the 2008-9 school year.
directly (or even reference our
Within that timespan, we faced paper) and tried to justify its arfinancial and bureaucratic hur- bitrary policies with abstractions.
dles while attempting to work Near the end of the 2009 school
under the existing structure over- year, a single 16-page issue of the
se~n by Student Activites, which CPJ spent eight pages advertising
proved near-impossible. We were itself in huge full-page ads and githreatened with defunding and ant gray boxes, pleading for subpressured to work under the col- missions.
lege's Student Communications
The CPJ often claims that if you
Media policy - the same policy don't like what you see in its pages,
that granted the CPJ sole legiti- then submit something. We know
macy while failing to hold it ac- it's not that simple, and we won't
countable. We couldn't effectively make that claim with our paper.
challenge the campus authorities We won't pretend that we can
while working under their te.rms. please everyone. But if you don't
So now we've gone independent. like what you see here, and you
Our source of funding is dona- can't submit something to us, we
tions, and more recently ad sales.
can help you start your own paper.
One of the articles in the first
issue of CxPJ stated, "Hopefully

The Crapper Point

Journal •

Vol. 1, Number 1

December 12, 1985

The Evergreen S1ate College

Enrollment: The Problem An Interview with Ed Edwards
Of the Juvenile Socialist Alliance
That Won't Go ·Away
by B. Zimmerman
by Laboe Quince

were no injuries, but the blaze

resulted ln $50 worth of property

One of th, major political forces on

Despite another decline In enrollment

this fall, and lagging appllations for
winter quarter, school officials are still
confident that those trends can h•
revmied and th, college can be saved.
According to Registrar Allen Walker
"slightly over 600" students haw sig,wd
up for wintet classes, about 125 fe,ver
than winter 1984. Historically, TESC
enrollment figures drop around 10 percent
from winter to spring quarter. Walhr
says if enrollment is over 525 students for
this spring "we'll be right about on target
for where our previous enrolJments
Admissions director Dlxy Lee Ray
reports that 43 new students han been
accepted for next fall, about ten more
than last year at this time. Ray claims
that's because of the decision to make
Thursdays "Free Igloo Bar Day" -all
students upon presentation of their
validated ID cards, ~ve a free ice
cream bar (vanilla ice cream surrounded









mostly to cleaning
equipment. With this problem out of
the way we decided to concentrate
all our energy on the issue of bathing
caps. On Saturday, April the lifth,
four of us entered the men's locker

campus this year is the Juvenile Socialist
Alliance OSA) . Tl:,e group incrtased its
membership significantly 1from four last
year to nine at present) and has even
started holding bi-monthly mtttings to
inform students of th, party's views on
national and international affain. Chairperson of the organization is Ed Edwards,
a third-year student from Palm Springs,
California, long a center of radical
political activity. Short, stocky, and
meticulously neat, Ed most closely
resembles a mobile computer in speech
and gesture. I interviewed him in party
headquarters, a small broom closet in the
basement of the library building.
When I arrived Ed was working on the
next issue of "The Fanatic," the JSA's
monthly newspaper . This month's
headlines-"Outdoor Ed Zionist Front".
The office is decorated with colorful
posters supporting such varied causes as
baby seals. Croatian independence, the
Cuban revolution, and 67 imprisoned

BZ : Now that you had established your

Chinese Trotsk ites. Ther~ is an old

grouD as a oowerful force that

room, with the intention of staying

there until Dan Evan's agrted to mttt
with us. We were there an hour
when several reactionaries from the

Rec center staff, after refusing our
requests for change for a dollar (with
which to call Evans on the pay
phone), locked us in the sauna . We
were insidt five hours and denied

food and water. They only let us out
after Don started losing consclous-

ness, thereby putting an end to their
plans of leaving us there overnight.
Still we considered our action
successful, particularly after the
expulsion from the school of the
people responsible for our incarceration.





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CPJ; FreePress.




A historical

by Rebecca Wyllie de Echeverria

As mentioned in several of our articles and editorial statements, the
Counter Point is partly a direct challenge to the CooperPointJoumal's lack
of reporting on Evergreens administration in a responsible way.
However, it turns out the Counter Point Collective was not the first
group of students that has noticed a
resonance between the Cooper Point
Journal and our ever diligent administrators. A trip to the archives turns
up three alternative student papers,
The Crapper PointJournal, The Evergreen
Free Press, and The Paper, that were
sparked, at least partly in response
to the CPJ.
The most sustained effort, The
Evergreen Free Press ran from 1988 to
1994. In the third issue, one of the
collective members, under the byline
"Goodman," published a narrative
about why they started an alternative paper, which reads surprisingly
like ours.
It seems the editor in chief of the
CPJ in 1988 was "being accused of
general incompetence as an editor
and not printing political views he
didn't agree with." The other staff
member of the CPJ and some Evergreen community members attempted to get him fired, but alas the
Communications Board ruled that
there were not sufficient grounds to
remove him from office.
The papers advisor at the time,
Susan Finkel, was described as "conservative by mainstream journalism
standards." She was apparently in
cahoots with the Communications
Board and angled for more power
by suggesting that she be in charge
of the hiring and firing of the editor
who made all executive decisions
about the CPJ.
In a stunning. familiar episode,
students who asked for change in the
CPJ were told by Finkel to "start their
own paper." So they did. After producing their first issue, they asked
the S&A board for funding, and they
did get the money-mainly, Good-

man asserts, because Finkel lobbied
for them, so they would cause no
more ruckus in the CPJ office.
The Evergreen Free Press thrived for
years and ran articles on suspect issues such as the Board of Trustees,
the failure of Disappearing Task
Forces at Evergreen, budget cut, and
police accountability. Or as some
could argue, everything the CPJ
deemed too controversial. They were
supported by a wide array of students and groups, including MEChA,
the Wilderness Center, and KAOS.
A brieflook through the years reveal several complaints from people
who the CPJ refused to publish. One
student wrote a letter to the Free Press
stating that he had published cartoons for the CPJ for several month,
which had been "subject to a series
of insults by the CPJ administration."
The Editor in Chief finally refused to
print his work because he "talked
about things that people don't like
to talk about... and there are reasons
why people don't like to talk about
Perhaps the topics discussed in the
Free Press and the Counter Pont make
some people uncomfortable, but the
thought behind both these papers is
to ferment discomfort and agitate
debates which give potential for positive change on campus.

4-Counter Point Journal

October 2009

PUBLIC RECORDS continues from page 1

When asked why he forwarded an
email about a student group meeting on campus, he replied, "It would
be to apprise Olympia police that
there's an organization meeting that
is going to discuss protest possibilities in Olympia. It's simply a headsup to let them know that there's
some coordination going on in regards to a military shipment coming
into the Port. But nobody from my
office would have attended it. And
I don't know of anybody from any
other jurisdiction that would come

From Art Costantino's hallway to

ln spring 2008, SDS's status as an Evergreen student group was revoked,
which the administration claimed
stemmed from a violation of the cam!
pus's newly instituted policies. SDS
protested this move by establishing
a sit-in outside of Vice President Art
Costantino's office. Although the sitin did make some local news outside
of Evergreen, it was nevertheless
surprising to find that the Army was

information before or after the event
I would greatly appreciate it. I have
been designated the lead for all Intel
matters for the Democratic National
Convention for US Capitol Police."
OPD Lt. Jim Pryde responded, "I
don't have any intel on this event
for you at this time," but referred
Pecher to Ed Sorger. When I asked
Sorger about his interactions with
Pecher, Sorger responded, "I vaguely
remember that, but I didn't have
anything to contribute." However, a
later email by Pecher confirmed that

gram that was funded by the Dept.
of Homeland Security and privately
managed by the American Trucking Associations. The Highway
Watch report, which was exposed by
Wikileaks, referenced the conference ·
in the context of an anarchist network whose decentralization made
it comparable to "most terrnr networks" and thus "more difficult to
disrupt." The report also expressed
amazement that childcare was available at the Evergreen conference.
From Evergreen Graduation to
potential riot situation

in because of it. So all it is is a head's
up that they're meeting to discuss
how they're going to respond to this
military shipment. That's all it is. It's
nothing any deeper than that."
Sorger added, "Keep in mind that
Tesctalk/Tesccrier is public. And in
fact, people from other jurisdictions
have access to that, too. It's not an inhouse/in-campus type of communication. It also goes way outside our
boundaries here at the college, so it's
accessible by anybody in the public. I
want to make that clear."
In fact, both Tesctalk and Tesccrier
are campus-only lists that require an
Evergreen email address to subscribe.
They are also accessible through the
web to subscribers only (Although
this is easy to circumvent, it would
still require deliberate circumvention). In response to this, Sorger stated, "Keep in mind that several police
officers are students here, .a:nd they
see these thin~ l·<!~- So ·there's
a very good chance that if they see
something that would be of importance to local law enforcement, they
would forward information. If I
did [forward Tesccrier messages], it
would only be information pertaining to the law enforcement network
for an awareness issue, which I have
a duty to do as a law enforcement officer. I'm just doing my job.
"I don't see anything that I've ever ,
emailed as being anything extremely
sensitive that would cause any issues
with any of our students, as far as impacting their ability to have expression of freedom and the right to free
speech - that kind of issue.
"I don't know of any obvious concerns on my part."
However, Dunn disagrees. "When
Sorger forwards informaton to the
police about political organizing
and students on campus that aren't
posing any threat, it's clearly targeting us for political reasons and an
obvious infringement on free speech.
We shouldn't. have to fear having
anything about us being sent to the
"Ed Sorger is a case in point that
qur rights are not being protected."

The day before the June 2008 Evergreen graduation, Sorger emailed
Iowans Agailst RNC
OPD, TCSO, and WSP with a "heads
up." Sorger reported, "There is a
slight possibility that we could have
a problem at Graduation because issues are still not resolved with the
stuclent group, SDS and they may
want to make some sort of a statement. We will not be engaging them
unless their demonstration interferes
with graduation processes. I have forwarded maps to your agencies indicating Command Post Areas. Please
review them just in case we have an
Although WSP and TCSO's responses are unknown, OPD Commander Tor Bjornstad told his sergeants to "Be sure your folks have
their helmets on board,'' indicating
• a possibility of a riot situation.
SDS did not disrupt graduation,
and in fact the conflict between SDS
and the Evergreen administration
was resolved the night before graduation. Sorger now states that he
didn't have any specific-information
Tent State Lnversity
regarding a potential SDS disruption
The anarchist "terror network," according to Highway Watch
of graduation, but he felt it was prudent to be cautious. "It seemed that
apprised of the sit-in as well. A threat Sorger and Pecher did have a discus- some sort of a statement- common
assessment report prepared by Fort sion. Two weeks after the Evergreen sense to me as the Police Services diLewis Force Protector Thomas Rudd conference, Pecher emailed Sorger to rector would be, 'You know what?
from July 30, 2008 stated that several follow up: "I am just droppjng [sic] Why not make a statement during a
a1=tivists protesting the 4/2 Stryker in to see if you had_a [sic] problems time on the heels of a sit-in, on the
Brigade equipment movement at the with the below action that we had heels of the riot thing that happened,
Port of Tacoma were "linked to the talked about a few weeks ago. Any you know? So why not be prepared
recent sit in at Evergreen State Col- information that you have would be and try to keep your ducks all in a
lege." Rudd does not explain how helpful."
row, so to speak, in case something
the Army would know who had been
When asked if he replied to Pech- unknown occurred... I was really nerinvolved in the sit-in or even why the er's later email, Sorger said, "I could vous, and I was very much on guard
Army would care about the sit-in out- have. I don't recall. I don't know if I because we sort of had a bad year. We
side Costantino's office.
even replied that I didn't have any had a police car tipped over and some
A "Threat Assessment Update" 'fnformation."
people angry about different things
by Rudd from November 2007 also
According to Brendan Dunn, Ev- going on." (No connections were ever
referenced a die-in "at Evergreen ergreen Police actually approached made between the 2008 Valentine's
State College," to occur "either at the staff at Student Activities to inquire Day "riot" and SDS.)
Campus Activities Building or Red about SDS's involvement in DNC/
Square" in response to the move- RNC demonstrations. This occurred
ment of 3/2 Stryker Brigade materiel around the time that Pecher would Fuse intelligence, and then
everything becomes a threat to
from the Port of Olympia.
have made initial contact with Sorg- national security
In late October 2008, equipment er.
from the 4/25 Brigade was being
The Northwest DNC/RNC Resis- It must be emphasized that the pubshipped from the Port of Tacoma to tance Conference was also rJferenced lic records procured by Dunn are not
the US Army National Training Cen- in a report l:1y Highway~Watch, a comprehensive. They pertain only
ter in southern California, in prepa- now-defunct "anti-terrorism" pro- communications possessed by th
ration for eventual deployment to Afghanistan. The materiel movement
occurred l!,nder the radar of PMR activists. Nevertheless, Army personnel
kept track of the northwest activist
community in case they got involved.
Daily reports from the Army included an Oct. 18, 2008 "threat update"
that the "Peace Works conference
continues at Evergreen College today and tomorrow." The Peace Works
by the Rachel Corrie Foundation.
From an Evergreen conference to
the US Senate Capitol Police

In February 9, 2009 Olympia SDS organized a one-day conference to prepare for protests at the Democratic
and Republican national conventions. The conference, entitled the
Northwest DNC/RNC Resistance
Conference, was held at Evergreen.
Three weeks before the conference,
Andrew Pecher of the US Senate Capitol Police-Intelligence Investigations
Section contacted the Olympia Police
Department and the Washington
State Patrol and requested, "If you
can provide me with any additional

City of Olympia that reference SDS;
anarchists, and the IWW. As Dunn
has commented, "This is just the
tip of the iceberg." Much more has
not surfaced, and what has been released is severely redacted. Through
other methods, activists have learned
of other emails forwarded by Evergreen Police from Tesccrier. They are
also aware that the City of Olympia
possesses a list of names of people
who lawfully participated in antiwar protests. Fort Lewis has its own
list that it uses to bar activists from
army grounds, even barring immediate relatives of Fort Lewis employees if those relatives have engaged
in prominent antiwar actions. Many
names on the lists are people who
have not engaged in illegal activity,
or who might have only dabbled in
antiwar protests temporarily.
Homeland Security meetings in
Tacoma apprise attendees of threats
ranging from white supremacist
groups to Latin American drug gangs
to Women in Black. And as much as
the Evergreen community should be
aware that it is being watched, Tacoma Homeland Security meetings are
more often occupied with suspicious
"Middle Eastern-looking" males -which is presumably a tautology in
national security matters - or, in one
instance, an individual described as
"a Middle Eastern male (Ethiopian)."
The intelligence reports produced
by governmental agencies are not always intelligent, nor are they much
to report. One last illustrative instance:
In early March 2007, the 4/2 Stryker Brigade moved its equipment
out through the Port of Tacoma for
eventual deployment to Iraq as part
of George Bush's troop "surge." Concurrently, Manuel Williams, Homeland Security advisor for the Port
of Tacoma's Maritime Intelligence
Support Team (MIST), issued regular intelligence updates on antiwar
One such intel update was sent
to various personnel of Fort Lewis,
Dept. of Homeland Security, Tacoma
Police, and the Coast Guard, and also
sent to John Towery and to a mysterious spy known as "jaamtoo4@" The intel consisted of
a single sentence: "Drew Hendrix'
[sic] partner in crime, Phan Nguyen
of the Evergreen crowd, has just issued a request for transportation to
the POT." As ominous as the intel report sounded, it was a starchy way to
indicate that on March 3, 2007, I was
looking for a ride to Tacoma.

Counter PointJournal-5

October 2009

Spies in Olympia: The bigger picture

by Anna Simonton
If you were gone over the summer or

if you're new to Evergreen, you may
not have heard about the biggest
scandal to hit the activist community this year: a military spy was discovered to have infiltrated Olympia
Port Militarization Resistance (PMR)
as well as other organizations that
are comprised largely of Evergreen
students. News outlets have already
covered this story, but this article
will attempt to catch up the folks
who haven't heard, and also place
our spy in the broader context of the
burgeoning Surveillance-Industrial
Background on the spy

In July it was confirmed that "John
Jacob," an Olympia activist, was actually John Towery, a civilian employee of Fort Lewis Force Protection, a group of military and civilian
employees who provide on-base law
enforcement and security. The revela• tion came as a result of a public records request conducted by Brendan
Maslauskas Dunn on behalf of the Industrial Workers of the World. Dunn
requested that the City of Olympia
provide him with any documents
concerning anarchists, anarchism,
Students for a Democratic Society, or
The documents Dunn received
included hundreds of emails from
Ft. Lewis Force Protector Thomas
Rudd to members of the Tacoma Police Department, the Olympia Police
Department, and other military personnel. The emails covered various
topics, but prevalent among them
were "threat assessments" detailing
the plans of groups such as PMR and
Students for a Democratic Society.
PMR is a group that has organized
blockades to make it harder for the
·military to use the ports of Olympia,
Tacoma, and Gray's Harbor to ship
soldiers and equipment to Iraq. At
times when PMR was planning direct actions, Rudd would send threat
assessments at one or two hour intervals, often including information about what was going on inside
PMR's meetings, information that
could only have been sent to him by
someone present at the meetings.
Dunn examined these documents
along with other activists including Drew Hendricks, who keeps a
personal database of information
on local law enforcement officers.
Hendricks recognized most of the
recipients of the forwarded emails,
but there was one name that he had
not seen before:John Towery.
Hendricks searched To-wecy's. , .. ..
name on the internet and·.(eund a
match in Spanaway, which thefknew
to be the hometown of their friend
and fellow activist who they knew
as John Jacob. They searched further,
and found that John Towery was a
member of a motorcycle club called
the Iron Butt Association. Hendricks
and Dunn recalled thatJohnJacob's
motorcycle bad something about
"Iron Butt" on its license plate.
John J. Towery II, aka John Jacob, not
keepin' it real.

When he started getting involved
in activist groups in 2007, "John Jacob" had informed Hendricks that
he was a civilian employee at Fort
Lewis. However, he claimed to be
an anarchist and wanted to use his
knowledge of the military base to
help PMR. Hendricks made it clear
that he was only interested in open
source, non-classified information
and began a tentative partnership
with "John Jacob." Gradually the
unlikely activist gained Hendricks'
trust and friendship and was made
an administrator of the PMR listserv,
giving him the names, addresses,
phone numbers, and email addresses
of many Olympia activists.
Hendricks and Dunn were.
highly suspicious of their friend.
Someone went to John Towery's
residence in Spanaway and saw John
Jacob there, confirming that the two
were in fact the same person.
Dunn confronted Towery who ad- Thurston County Sherriffs Detective Mike Hirte, center, flanked byTCSO Chief Jim Chamberlain, both made a surprise appearance
mitted that for two years he spied on
atthe "Oly 22" trial in Thurston County District Court, March 29, 2007. Hirte is believed to be "," who
the group and passed information on
spied on Olympia activist lists at least since January 2006.

to an intelligence network composed
Middle East.
of dozens oflaw enforcement agen- a breach of the pretrial agreements, website."
Fusion centers developed across
Why did the Homeland Security
cies including Immigrations and as juror information was not to be
officials and the Tacoma police know the country fairly independently
Customs Enforcement, Joint Terror- made public.
The defense team was sure that ab_o ut the mistrial before it hap- of one another to address these deism Task Force, FBI, Department of
Homeland Security, the Army at Fort the document had not left the list~ pened? And why are .these entities sires and trends in law enforcement
Lewis, and Olympia and Tacoma serv and certainly was not posted on concerned with activists arrested by communities. However, the federal
police. Towery also told Dunn that the web. They inspected the list of Thurston County? Here is where we government quickly jumped on the
there are other informants still em- e;-mails that were subscribed to the link back to the Towery discovery, to bandwagon and now plays a major
listserv and for the first time noticed examine the broader context of his role in the development of fusion
bedded in PMR.
centers by providing personnel,
The idea of a military spy - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - spying.
What the documents that guidance, training, and funding-as
collecting information on loDunn obtained show, and of 2006 the Department of Homecal activists is not only unsetwhat Towery admitted, is land Security alone had provided
tling, it is illegal. The Posse
that the intelligence that fusion centers with over $380 milComitatus Act of 1878 is a
military spies collect does lion in federal funds. That figure has
federal law that prohibits the
not remain within the army, surely grown, seeing as there were
military from acting in a law
nor does intelligence collect- forty-two fusion centers in 2007, fifenforcement capacity (which
ed by police remain within ty-eight in 2008, and now there are
includes surveillance) against
their department. Rather, seventy-two nationwide.
civilians. This is more than
Another way fusion centers have
Towery was one small part
a legal technicality, the law
of a huge information- changed since their advent is called
is part of the foundation of
demotracy in this country. Without two addresses they did not recognize: sharing network of law enforcement "mission creep." Because the centers
it, we could find ourselves subject to and edmund. agencies enabled by a relatively re- developed without any regulatory
martial law, with no legal recourse They found out that cent phenomenon-the advent and framework, their original mission of
counterterrorism quickly expanded
available, at the whim of a disgrun- "Jaam" had gotten on the listerv the proliferation of fusion centers.
to encompass an "all crimes, all haztled politician or general.
previous month, shortly after PMR
ards" policy. Officials say this was
While Dunn and Hendricks were announced plans for the March 2007 Fusion centers?
partly because a broader mission
shocked that their close friend Port of Tacoma Protest. The e-mail
turned out to be a spy, the fact that had been added to every other list- The "threat assessme11ts" that Thom- statement would allow centers to
PMR was under surveillance was not serv on, the main e-mail as Rudd sent to military and police apply for more grants, and in larger
news. The first discovery of police in- and listserv provider for activists in personnel based on information partwas due to the difficulty of getfiltration into PMR occurred in 2007 Olympia, and the site that housed - that Towery was feeding him from ting local law enforcement to put efduring a trial in which twenty-two the defense team's listserv. Jaam had P_MR meetings was also forwarded fort into fighting terrorism without
activists, known as the Oly22, were joined all the lists at the same time, to an agency called the Washington the benefit of using the centers' reprosecuted by Thurston County. Two including listservs for projects that Joint Analytical Center, a fusion cen- sources to tackle "crime and hazards"
had been charged with "riot without had never materialized and that had ter in Seattle. When the Olympian in their own towns and counties.
requested the city to provide copies Unfortunately "crimes and hazards,"
a weapon," and the other twenty no other subscribers.
with "second degree trespassing" for
Apparently edmund.bob had ex- of e-mails from WAJAC, the entire must be synonymous with political
lying down near the gate of the Port isted on various Olympia Riseup text of the documents they received expression and activism, judging by
of Olympia to protest the military's listservs at least since January 2006, was redacted. All that was left for us the frequency with which fusion cenuse of the port in May of 2006.
but had only gotten on the defense to read were the titles of the black- tc;rs have targeted political groups.
The ACLU report identified five
listserv the day before Mike Hirte ened paragraphs such as "Civil Disturbance,'' and "Activists Leave their major..~roblems that these fusion
Back-background: The first spy
cent~t:f·present: ambiguous Jiµes
prosecutor in co~ :It:seemed to the Mark."
The trial began on Monday, March defense thatJaam was 'a law enforceAccording to Mike German of the of atitfiority, private sector partici26, 2007. By Thursday of that week, ment official who had infiltrated the ACLU, fusion centers are "multi-ju- pation, military participation, data
the prosecutor had breached one of Riseup listserv system and alerted risdictional intelligence centers that mining, and excessive secrecy. These
the pretrial agreements, had an emo- the prosecution about the analysis, involve state, local, and federal law problems have already manifested
tional breakdown, and a police wit- which led Hirte to then hack the enforcement, as well as other gov- in Washington and on the Evergreen
ness had claimed, despite evidence listserv as well. When the defense ac- ernment entities ... put also involve campus.
to the contrary, to have no memory cused Hirte of being edmund.bob he oftentimes the military and private
of videotaped footage of the protest, said, "My name is not edmund-dot- companies." All of these different Ambiguous lines of authority
which had been destroyed before the bob, at all."
agencies provide intelligence to the
The prosecution pushed for a mis- fusion center, where computers scan Because federal, state, and local law
defense could see it. It was obvious
to everyone that the prosecution did· trial, which the judge granted. If all the data to pick out the supposed- enforcement together constitute
not have a strong case, and that they there could be any remaining doubt ly noteworthy stuff, which analysts fusion centers, it isn't clear who
were calling unreliable witnesses.
that the prosecution was fishing for use to write intelligence reports.
controls the centers or whose rules
a mistrial and breaching lawyer cliA report by the ACLU that German and regulations guide their conduct.
In the middle of the trial Detective
Mike Hirte and the Thurston County ent confidentiality in order to cre- co-authored called "What's Wrong There is evidence that participating
Chief Jim Chamberlain stepped into ate one, minutes from a Homeland with Fusion Centers?" describes agencies use this structure to evade
the courtroom and handed a paper Security meeting in Tacoma confirm how after 9/11 growing pressure for oversight by "policy shopping," or
to the prosecutor, who immediately that the prosecution and law en- states to have a larger role in coun- picking which set of laws best fits
called for a recess. The prosecutor forcement agencies were commu- terterrorism compelled the FBI to their needs. For example, in some
showed the paper to the defense law- nicating about the possibility of a expand their Joint Terrorism Task states, privacy laws are stricter than
yer, who recognized the document mistrial. On March 2'9, 2007 at 2wn, Force programs to share more intel- federal laws, while in others they are
as a jury analysis spreadsheet that the same day and time that the ac- ligence with state and local police. less so. Through a fusion center, the
had been sent to the defense team's tivists in court were accusing Mike However, secrecy rules still made FBI could.access information about
listserv. The prosecutor went on to Hirte of being edmund.bob, Home- it hard for state and local police to citizens from a local law enforceclaim to the judge that an anony- land Security and the Tacoma police share intelligence with each other. ment agency functioning under lax
mous person had notified him of the were in a meeting in which a Captain Another force driving the creation state privacy laws, without actually
existence of the document. He had Strickland said, "The trials involving of these centers is the growing trend "hosting" information that would be
approached the chief of police who the protestors arrested during the of "intelligence-led policing," which illegal for them to obtain under fedassigned Hirte to investigate. Hirte Olympia protest [are] taking place utilizes indivtduals' information to eral law. This process fails to produce
supposedly found the document in Olympia. There [is] a possibility search for "suspicious activity,'' like documentation that would otherwise
posted on an unspecified website. If of jury tampering, as·a list of the jury scanning library records to see who
► SPIES continued on page 7
this were true, it would constitute members' names was posted on a has checked out books about the

They inspected the list ofe·mails that
were subscribed to the listserv and for
the first time noticed two addresses they
did not recognize: jaamtoo4@gmail.
com and


6-Counter Point Journal

October 2009

RESTROOMS continued from page 6

characterization clearly differs
his own "perception" of me as "feI am shocked and saddened by
from thatused,forexample, by the
male," and therefore making his
the decision made by Evergreen's
San Francisco Unified School Disactions towards me permissable.
civil rights officer, Nicole Ack, reptrict, which requires "exclusive and
I do not agree with this at all, and
resenting the Administration's
consistent assertion of a particular
regardless of what is stated by Ms.
stance toward this incident thus
gender identity" to use a particular
Ack or the staff member, I find it
far. I find it very upsetting and ofsex-designated restroom.
very self-excusing and nai've thing
fensive that I have been treated as
to be suggested that no assumpI feel very disrespected by the lanif I don't know how to judge when
tiofl.s were mad~ about my sexualguage used in this report and the
I am being intentionally intimiity or orientation-just my gender,
handling of the case by the civil
dated and discriminated against.
rights officer. It casts the suspiAs a student of Evergreen for four
I believe it was my initial entercion and doubt on me, in that I
years with good standing and paring of the
ticipation in the - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - community, to be
given the treatment that I am the
person who has
done something
_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _; _ _ her findmg
wrong, or made a
on (rather
'mistake,' or should
than the
"presumed" that either the men's
have used a different restroo_m
staff member's behavior, as I think
or women's was appropriate, and
causes me a great deal of pain and
would be a more appropriate fothat I "chose not to use the womupset. I have always tried to be a
cus). It is saddening the ways in
en's restroom or the easily accessiperson who shows others respect
which a minority person's decible gender neutral restroom." Evand can be treated with respect. I
sions of how to best protect themery time I n_eed to use a restroom,
understand that some parts of my
selves can so easily lead to entrapam I to go and find the gender
identity and how I look leave me
.ment by an irresponsible second or
neutral restroom, so that I don't
vulnerable not only to discriminathird-party. The civil rights officer
bother 1>eople who don't know
tion but also to a choice, conscious
has not mentioned in her report or •
how to handle how I look without
or not, of not being understood
seemed to have investigated how
saying something antagonistic or
as a complete human being, or
the staff member saw me enter the
intimidatory? I needed to relieve
given the respect a human being
women's room and then go into ·
myself, and the restroom facilities
the men's. Walking from his office,
were there on the first floor (unYou have no idea the pain this
I don't know how he could have
like the single stall/gender neutral
causes me. I did not expect much
restroom, which is by Media Serdisciplinary action toward the staff
vices on the second floor). [Update: I
member who was clearly acting in
learned over the summer that Evergreen
an intimidating and discriminatohas another single-stall restroom on the
ry way toward me, nor did I expect
.first floor-something I did not know,
him to admit his intent, which was
as an alumni.]
extremely clear to me, and I feel to .
I never "presume" ·any bathany person, a professional or sturoom, besides a single stall, is ever
dent, gay or s~raight, who knows
"appropriate." I am harassed or
how to treat a human being, and
made to feel uncomfortable in rewho has some basic knowledge of
strooms at least 50% of the time I
local culture, and therefore, the
culture of the stu- _ _ _ __ __ _ _ _ _ __
dent body (as well
degrees (the
as staff). But I am
shocked by the
other 50%
of the time,
civil rights offithey ' re
cer's finding of no
violation of the
thank God).
campus code of
The stateconduct, and at
witnessed that entire process and
ment in the
the prospect that
entered only after I had gotten inSan Franother administraside a stall and started using it, uncisco Unitive staff would
less he had stopped to watch me.
fied School
support such a
Outside of all of that, it is very
clear that the staff member enthat Nicole
Beyond the pertered the men's room and spoke
sonal pain and upset - - - - - - - - - - - - - Ack used
to me in a way that was intentionto support
this has caused me
ally harassing and intimidatory.
her comments of myself as havso far, the negative consequences
He wanted me to "use the right
ing made the mistake (implying I
it has for the safety and respect
restroom." He wasn't thinking I'd
caused the issue to begin with, and
given the queer community at Evmade a mistake-he said to me,
should have just gone to relieve
ergreen, and anyone whose gender
in a voice that was not a conversamyself in a private setting, where I
is visibly "questionable," is serious
tional tone or any sort of friendly
wouldn't have bothered anyone by
and far-reaching.
or neutral tone, "Next time, use
my usage of the bathroom) is one I
In quoting the first part of the
the right restroom." He knew I •
find interesting. How is she aware
conclusion of the report filed by
was fully aware of what restroom
of any "exclusive and consistent
I was in, and he wanted to let me
assertion of a particular gender
know that he was not okay with
Complainant states that " . . . I am
identity" on my part? And moremy decision. That is directly invisibly gay/queer looking, and pass
over, whether or not I have such an
timidatory (though he made the
as a male half the time. Sometimes I
exclusive and consistent assertion
statement from behind my closed
use the men's restroom to avoid being
that she may deem satisfactory,
stall door so I could not see him),
hassled in the women's." Complainhow does that change how that
and a severe act of discrimination.
ant chose not to use the women's
makes this staff member's behavThe officer also declined to add
restroom or the easily accessible
ior toward me permissable or not?
in her ending statement the staff
gender neutral restroom, but instead
How is he to know what particumember's promise to her that he
presumed _that .either the men's or
lar gender identity I exclusively
wouldn't do the same thing again
women's was appropriate, which
identify with? It still goes back to


' am harassed or made to feel uncomfortable in restrooms ;e:~~:~
at least 50% ofthe time I use them, to different degrees !~~t~i~~:;.
(The other 50% ofthe time, they're empty, thank God'.

I encourage the campus
community to ask the
college to work on devel-

oping avery clear restroom policy that treats its
minority students with
respect, rather than with
suspicion and blame.

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(also why not, if it is not problematic behavior?). In a phone conversation with me (in which she
tried to deny the problems of the
incident) she said the staff member said instead that he would not
use the restroom if he saw someone fitting my description going
into the restroom, as he wouldn't
want to make any mistake in his
interaction with them. I told her I
found this troubling, as a fear on
his part of making a mistake in
an interaction sounded extremely •
questionable to me, and revealing
of his feelings around people who
"look like me." This staff member
is uncomfortable around queer
looking people using the sa~e restroom as him (and I have a feeling
this is not limited to gender questionable looking people, but probably visibly gay men as well), and
chose to act on that discomfort by
coming into the men's room to
put me in my proper place (which
was outside of "his" restroom.)
That is not a mistake; that is not a
friendly question or notice; that is
discriminatory and intimidatory,
an act with clear undertones of
gender violence.
I respect this college very much
for the opportunities I have found
as a student and as an artist. But I
will not accept the decision made
by the campus civil rights officer. I
hope a more appropriate decision
is made by whomever appropriate.
I encourage the campus community
to ask the college to work on developing a very clear restroom policy
that treats its minority students with
respect, rather than with suspicion
and blame. Alongside this work, I
strongly advocate all staff and faculty having the opportunity for private
workshops that deal with gender diversity. I am not seeking any type of
retribution or "restorative justice"
- the stakes are much greater than
a single individual or resolution.
The campus has a problem. It has a
problem among its staff and its students-a problem among those who
are uncomfortable (and sometimes
this uncomfortable-ness can grow
into anger and violence) around
others in the campus community
whose gender confuses them. This
problem is not going to be solved by
the cowardly, unprofessional, and
inappropriate response given thus
far by Nicole Ack and Art Costantino.
It is not going to "go away" by referencing some code from San Francisco. Doesn't Evergreen know how
to think for itself? Or is gayness or
queerness so alien to it that it needs
to look at some other policy and use
it as an excuse for not addressing a
truly problematic incident, and not
even bother responding to the "complainant," an Evergreen alumni and
recipient of numerous Evergreen
The Evergreen community needs
to put pressure on those in a position
of power to make significant and lasting changes in policy. It furthermore
needs to provide an atmosphere in
which staff and faculty in particular
can share their feelings and learn
how to work with the cultural backgrounds of its campus members. Because gender, like many other things,
is a manifested identity as well as
something that holds a cultural
understanding unique to differing
groups of people. The change needs
to start with Evergreen employees it needs to be known that students
don't have to fear homophobic and
genderphobic behavior from members of the College.
I will not be involved in the pr_o ceedings from this point forth, as I
moved to the Bay Area in late May
and have been building a life there.
But I wish the campus luck in developing a mature model of dealing
with incidents like this-because I
assure you, they will keep occurring,
and will only get worse if not addressed in a healthy manner.

Exploding wealth gap got you
down? Buy a country!

The Forbes 400, a list of the 400
wealthiest people in America,
was published for 2009 on September 30th. Their combined
net worth this year amounted
to $1.27 trillion dollars. Their
wealth is so unrestrained that
a news article detailing what
countries they could purchase
was the front of Yahoo!'s homepage early Monday morning.
In a chillingly exuberant
fashion, the author of the piece
details how stunningly opulent
a few members of the 400 are
by making statements like, "Bill
Gates ... has a personal balance
sheet larger than the Gross Domestic Product of 140 countries,"
and showing pictures of their
smiling faces next to maps of
the countries whose ~conomies
they dwarf.
Out of the 50 wealthiest individuals, five are women and
only one is a person of color.
The other headline of the day on
Yahoo! News was the winner of
the annual potato chip tasting
Troops in Now?

October 7th marked the 8 years
since the US invasion of Afghanistan. Much of the world's
response was to hold protests,
rallies and demonstrations. The
case was no different in Olympia, where the group People for
Liberation through Education
and Action organized a rally
marching t hrough west side
streets and took up over a city
block in length. The reaction in
Washington D.C., even with 61
anti-war protestors arrested
and mass demonstrations, was
a sharp contrast on the day.
President Obama ruled out
any significant withdrawal of US
troops from Afghanistan in a bipartisan congressional meeting.
Press secretary Robert Gibbs
commented that the troop
withdrawal was no longer "on
the table." The option left very
much on the table, however, was
sending an additional 40,000
troops to the country which already is the unwelcome home
of over 100,000 foreign soldiers.
Congress, specifically Senate
majority leader Harry Reed, has
responded to this move by announcing that, "Whatever deci- •
sion you [Pres. Obama] make,
we'll support it."
Ouch! My Civil Liberties!

Over 200 protestors were arrested during the G20 protests
in Pittsburgh at the end of last
September. This included one
activist arrested for using Twitter to inform demonstrators
where police were telling the
crowd to disperse and how they
could leave safely. The particular activist, Elliot Madison, was
pulled from his hotel room along
with pictures of Karl Marx, V. I.
Lenin, and a slingshot.
Riot police are under heavy
criticism for the use of sound
cannons, a large device which
emits an ear-piercing pitch at
an extremely high volume, on
protestors as well as wrongful
arrests and other forms of brutality: Over 40 law enforcement
agencies were on hand in Pittsburgh for the G20 summit

October 2009

Counter Point Journal-7

The Really Really Free Marl<et
The most radical swap meet in the Northwest
animal from a blanket on the ground
and hands it to a slobbering dog.
On the morning of Sunday, Septem- "This is for the doggiel" he announcber 27, a slew of bleary-eyed shoppers es to his mother, who smiles.
descended on downtown Olympia,
A man in a cowboy hat walks up
searching for sales and deals like with several boxes, announces he's
any good American with orders to moving to Guatemala and has no
stimulate the economy. They were need for anything in his house.
shocked and awed, however, when
A mother pushing a stroller and
they stumbled upon a living experi- tugging along a reluctant child
ment in anarchy blossoming in the
beautiful, green grass of Sylvester
Park: the Olympia Really Really Free
While the Olympia meet has a
group of people that procure per-·
mits and do all the dirty work of
pasting up flyers, the Really Really
Free Market is non-hierarchical and
decentralized. The meeting place is
specified, and then it's up to you!
People bring things they need
to gefrid of and stumble upon the
treasures of others. The whole event
had the feeling of a swap meet or flea
market, except with one big difference: The usual voices haggling over
minute price differences and sellers
trying to undercut each other were
nowhere to be heard. Instead, there makes her way over to the vegan
were only gasps and frantic phone buffet. "We were just on our way
calls made to friends. "You've got to home from church," she says as she
get down here. Oh my god, there's so dishes up a plate for herself and her
much good stuff, and everything is children. "And we just think this is
the greatest thing ever!" All to the
A small child picks up a stuffed sounds of a rotating cast of musi-


The whole event had the
feeling ofaswap meet or
flea market, exceptwith
one big difference: The
usual voices haggling
over minute price differences and sellers trying to
undercut each other were
nowhere to be heard.

cians on the lawn, playing a drum
kit, guitars, banjos, djembes and
The Olympia 'Free Market was a
rousing success for a few different
First, by all appearances, none of
the people at the free market were
significantly wealthier or more affluent than anybody else. Some gave
a lot, and some gave a little. Still, everybody contributed what they could
and left with a new pile of goodies. It
was a living, modern potlatch, and
everybody took it upon themselves
to redistribute their wealth. Some
folks brought more than others, but
nobody was keeping score or making
Second, while it showed how peo~
ple can naturally embrace disorganization, and it represents a simple
step toward a more self-determining
community. It was not about pushing any political agenda or ideology.
No pamphlets were shoved into the
hands of visitors, and there were no
rousing speeches. Rather, it naturally asserted a political philosophy
that we can all agree on-that real
communities are created from the
bottom-up, not imposed on us from
the top-down by politicos and legislators.

The invisible hand of the Really Really Free Market digs in! (Photo by Nik Nerbum)

SPIES continued from page 5

be subject to the Freedom of Infor- The problem with outsourcing law
mation Act, leaving citizens with no enforcement to private contractors
i:ecourse for finding out what these is that private companies are not sub-.
agencies are doing.
ject to the Freedom of Information
While the federal authorities Act. Good luck defending yourself in
maintain that they are not in charge court when you can't access the eviof these centers, the ACLU report dence criminalizing you because it
points out that many fusion centers was gathered by a company instead
are located within federal workspace. of a police officer.
In fact, the Washington Joint AnaIn 2006 the Departments of Juslytical Center is housed in an office tice and Homeland Security created
on the same floor as the FBI office a report that set forth guidelines on
in Seattle. At a congressional hear- systematizing the growth of fusion
ing in 2007, a Department of Home- centers in accordance with the fedland Security official could not.give a eral government's vision. Included
straight answer on who runs fusion in the guidelines is a six-page list
centers. Instead he felt it sufficient to of potential types of information
say, "fusion centers are in charge of fusion centers could glean in partfusion centers."
nership with the private sector. The
various sources of information and
intelligence includes: food and water
Private sector participation
production facilities; grocery stores
Fusion Centers are working on in- and restaurants; banks, credit comvolving private companies in
intelligence gathering and law
enforcement in a number of
ways. One strategy is to facilitate the contracting out of law
enforcement services to private

utility, electric, and oil companies; from WAJAC along with the army to catch terrorists. The Department
the gaming industry, sporting facili- and local police. And again, John ofJustice's guidelines for fusion centies, amusement parks, cruise lines, Towery was a part of this system and ters state that one of the goals of fuhotels, resorts, and convention cen- the people he was spying on weren't sion centers is to protect the nation's
ters; defense contractors and military doing anything "wrong'' or "suspi- "critical infrastructure." When we
entities; apartment facilities and fa- cious" unless nonviolent protest fits consider that 85% of this infrastruc:
cility management companies; malls those descriptions.
ture is privately owned, in light of
and retail stores; state and--tllild weleverything else we know, it is clear
fare entities; the postal service and Data mining
that fusion centers do not exist to
private shipping companies; and
catch terrorists or criminals, but to
public and private transport entities, What the ACLU report has to say repress anyone who poses a threat
including airlines. And that's hardly about data mining, the process in to corporate America, whether that
the whole list.
which a computer scrolls through means unions, activists, organizWhat these guidelines propose, a sea of data to pick out the "suspi- ers, artists, or just people who don't
and what is already being developed, cious" fish, reveals the real intent of buy into the status quo, who have a
is a Surveillance-Industrial Complex these fusion centers. The report in- vision for progressive social change.
in which everything you do, from cludes some hypothetical numbers We've already seen the effects in our
buying groceries to getting in trou- that illustrate how data-mining is own community, with the repression
ble at school, can be logged in
of the anti-war activists and
a system in which data-minthe basic breach of trust by our
ing technology is used to sort
own campus police who are
through the details of milsupposed to protect us.
lions of lives to .pull out the
This all paints a very dark
things that seem "suspipicture, but we have to rememcious." If you are ;flagged,
ber that when the authorities
the system can build a despy on, arrest, or intimidate
tailed portrait of your life - - - - - - - - - - - - - -- - - - certain groups or individuals,
to serve as a reference for
it isn't about persecuting them
surveillance and action against counter-productive in catching ter~ as much as it is an example to everyyou.
rorists. If we have a computer system one else. What they hope is that by
If you think nothing you that is 99% accurate-which no sys- intimidating some of us, they intimido is suspicious, that this isn't tem is-that is scanning information date us all, and make us think twice
a threat to people who aren't about a population in which there about that protest we were going to
doing anything wrong, take a are 300,000,000 non-terrorists, and plan or that article we were going to
look at this CxPJ issue's inter- 1,000 terrorists, the number of ter- write. With the Surveillance-Indusview with Ed Sorger, head of rorists that will be caught is 990, and trial Complex continuously growEvergreen's campus security. Sorger the number of innocent people who ing and looming closer, we have to
has been forwarding TESCCrier an- will be "caught" is 3,000,000, because remember the critical importance of
nouncements to the Olympia Police of that 1% inaccuracy rate. Imagine a not being afraid: it's the first way to
Department, who may have passed system that is only So% accurate.
them up the chain of command to
Either fusion centers are run by
WAjAc, and Sorger received e-mails idiots or this system is not designed

ADepartment ofHomeland Securi-

ty official could not give astraight
· centers.
answer on h runs {ius,on
Instead he felt it sufficient to say,

companies. This is happening
here, in Washington. A 1,525 "
page, confidential document
titled "Washington Joint Ana•
lytical Center Seattle Private
Intelligence Outsourcing," was
posted on Wikileaks this year.
The document details a process of panies, and investment firms; prehiring private entities to gather in- schools, daycare center$, universities,
telligence on behalf of the Washing- primary .and secondary schools, and
ton State Patrol. Pricing, proposals, "other educational entities providing
background checks, and contracts information on suspicious activity";
are all included in the document. fire and emergency medical services;

Fusion centers are mcharge offu-

SIOn Centers.

Good luck defending yourselfin court
when you can't access the evidence criminalizing you because it was gathered by
acompany instead ofapolice officer.

Public records provided by the City of Olympia were slightly redacted.

I C.,.t.r-....._

~ 2 - - - : J 0 0 9, Prot.,._.lll~tor-11yu~of
U.. ••u...J DIIJ' .t Act'-....._ ww wtda Ina.

8-Counter Point Journal

October 2009

No on 1033, yes on 71
by Tessa R. Wyllie de Echeverria

The school year has started and Evergreen students have returned to Olympia. It's easy to get
caught up in your classes, seeing old friends'
and settling into new homes, but we can't forget that we belong to a greater commii.nity. This
November, Olympia city council elections and
state wide ballots are coming out. The Olympia
city council affects Evergreen students and the
greater community Evergreen is a part of which
makes it important to research candidates and
vote. There are a number of initiatives on this
year's ballot to watch out for.

Preserve the Domestic Partnership Law





Initiatives on the ballot
CxPJ Vote: NO!
Initiatives like l-1033 have been put on ballots
across the country and in some states have
passed. This initiative would freeze state budgets at their current level, along with the budget cuts we saw last year and tuition hikes. Enacting this bill would keep the state struggling
with the same small budget it had this year
when so many people experienced a tremendous loss of jobs, income, and social services.
The potential outcome is evident in other
states, such as Colorado, that passed a similar
initiative that harmed public schools greatly.
The tuition hikes and lost services at Evergreen
approved by the Board of Trustees at the end
of last school year would stay in effect. This
means a continual tuition hike of 14% every
year with no talk of bringing back any of the
services cut from campus. The passing of this
initiative would not only harm our school and
limit who is able to attend Evergreen in the
future, but cuts deeply into the well being of
citizens across the state. Small bills like this

can make a huge impact. The budget of the
state directly affects every student at Evergreen
we must stand up to initiatives that harm our

Referendum 71
CxPJ Vote: YES!
This is an important law working on domestic
partnership rights for gay couples. Initially a
LGBT rights bill on its way to the legislature,
the conservative group Protect Marriage Washington petitioned and got the initiative to be
put up for a statewide referendum vote. The
·measure legalizes domestic parmerships and
accords them with all the rights of marriage but
retains the title "domestic partnership" instead
of "marriage" even though the referendum, if
passed, accords both the same institutional
A yes vote on this measure is a vote towards
equality and an affirmation of basic human
dignity and rights for the over 12,000 registered domestic partnerships in Washington
state. Polls.showed the general public voting
yes, but only by a narrow margin. Since Washington State courts have already voted against
the measure and the state legislature has been
blocked from passing the bill, a state-wide referendum is the last way to pass this extremely
important measure. Even if you do so for no
other reason, register and vote for of this measure.
The last day to register in person to vote in
the November elections is October 26th. You
can register at your local Department of Licensing. Ballots are mailed out and the last
day to vote in the general election is November 3rd. More information can be found under
Elections and Voter Information on Thurston
County's website.

To the young activist/organizer
by Andrew Sernatinger

Evergreen tends to run in about three year activist cycles. It's a fairly observable phenomenon
that a group of students will show up either as
freshpersons or transfers, learn about issues together, start to work on common projects and
then form a cadre, affinity group, collective or
whatever you'd like to call it.
Those people come to their own after a while
of learning about the issues, seeing how Evergreen works and developing organizing skills.
But at some point, that group will phase out
and take their knowledge with them. A new
group will start at the beginning and there'll
be a gap of time where activism reaches a low
So this is for you, the young activist/organizer, coming to ~ new place and wanting to
get involved. In the spirit of multigenerational
movement building, I'd like to share some tips
and guidelines to help you be successful in the
work you want to do.

Personal stuff
1. While you're likely learning about privilege,
imperialism, orientalism, anarchism or whatever else, take some time to chew and digest
that information before getting dogmatic and
decrying every injustice to prove that you know
your shit. Its heavy stuff, for sure, but ask yourself does calling people "liberal" build movements or does it alienate people? Not saying
there isn't overlap, but just think about it.
2. Remember that politics isn't about purity.
Scoffing at people for wearing Nikes or shopping at Safeway never built a movement. Yes,
you will be faced with contradictions, but remember it's about building collective power
and not isolating yourself as the sole "radical."

sion that have done some work to get the ball
5. Take care of yourself (and each other). Often
young activists put themselves in emotionally
intense situations, and if they don't talk it out
or do something to decompress, they can burn
out quickly. That's really not what anyone
needs. So remember that sometimes it's okay
not to show up if you need the night to collect
yourself. Watch your favorite stupid movie,
have a beer, do some knitting, etc.

know the cops write reports after actions. Why
don't we?" We need to have honest reflections
on the work we do so that we can improve and
win. Why did you choose this campaign? What
worked and what didn't? Whether it's for you
or for a group, reflection has to happen.

7. Reflect! A comrade said to me once, "You

1. Do your homework. Get the information
that's available, analyze the situation and develop your course of action from there. See if
someone hasn't started a similar project before
you and build on whatthey did. Go to people's
offices and literally just ask them what's going
on, most of them are really helpful and they're
not out to get you. Websites are a good place
to figure out whom to talk to, and if you get it
wrong you can ask who the best person would
2. Figure out what you want and what it looks
like. If you don't have a clear idea, whatever
work you do will be confused and will have a
harder time moving forward. Try to develop
a set of strategic demands and adjust them as
you go.
3. Divide and rotate your labor. There's this
myth that anti-oppression means that "everyone will do everything,'' and experience tells us
this isn't true and it doesn't work. Often informal structures appear where a few strong personalities dictate and other people do the hard
work. Just be clear about who's doing what and
revisit it.

3. Develop your collective skills. We're brought 4. Use the resources available to you. Evergreen
up to do everything as individuals, and as and Olympia have a lot of stuff to offer. You
young people demanding radical democracy don't have to do everything DIY, so if someone
can help you get what you need faster, be smart
and revolution, we need to work on ourselves
and experiment with group work. Building and use it! (Public records request being a pera working organization means trusting your sonal favorite.)
comrades in group decisions even if you dis- • 5. Create a campaign that makes sense. Miliagree sometimes, askin'g people before you tancy does not always equal good politics or
do things that affect them, strengthening "us" strategy. It may not seem like the most "radical"
and not just "you".
thing to create institutions or talk to adminis4. Leadership isn't bad. People need to take ini- trators, but what's effective in your situation?
tiative and support each other as they develop
as leaders. It's not immediately hierarchical or
authoritative to have leaders, people with vi-

be a more personal door-knocking campaign.
The more people know what you're doing and
why, the less opposition you'll face. Make sure
you have something to give people if they want
to know about what you're doing-a flyer or
program or something.

6. Have a public outreach campaign. It could be
as simple as writing an article for Works in Progress, counter Point Journal, or the CPJ, or it could



Disorientation Week: Evergreen students ret~rned to campus and start tearing it down.