mamagaea: (Hobbes Glaring)
Kleenex Kleercut — Trees for Tissues?
by Warren McLaren, Sydney on 05. 3.06
Design & Architecture (recycled)

This seems pertinent given that it was Arbor Day recently, and even though our name maybe tongue-in-cheek, we are kind of fond of the things anyhow. Anyhow late last month Kimberly-Clark held their annual general meeting (AGM), where the Chairman and CEO told the assembled masses that the company was achieving growth through a sharpened focus on innovation. Which is sort of at odds with their Forest Fact Sheet, which appears oddly prominent on their website’s home page, alongside their 2005 Sustainability Report. The Forest Fact sheet states “K-C's Use of Virgin and Recycled Fiber is in Line With Industry Practices.” Not a statement that really screams innovation. The reason for Kimberly-Clark to be so boldly displaying their environmental credentials online may have something to do with a current Greenpeace campaign, known as Kleercut, whereby the rainbow warriors assert “Kimberly-Clark clearcuts ancient forests to manufacture Kleenex tissue product.” At the same AGM noted above, a group of K-C shareholders with a combined $21 million USD worth of stock, urged the company to shed a ‘tarnished environmental record’ and commit to using fibre from sustainable forestry operations, certified to the standards to the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC). That might’ve been an interesting enough story on its own, but in re-reading my source link and those of K-C and Greenpeace, something else came into view.

In an interesting piece of journalism, the Dallas Business Journal say, “The group [Greenpeace] maintains that only 29 percent of the fiber Kimberly-Clark uses comes from recycled sources.” Yet on the Kleercut website, Greenpeace suggest, “In North America, less than 19 per cent of the pulp Kimberly-Clark uses for its disposable tissue products (toilet paper, facial tissue, napkins and paper towels) comes from recycled sources.”

The DBJ goes on to say “But a sustainable forestry practice report on the company's Web site refutes many of the claims made by Greenpeace. According to the report, leading manufacturers, including Kimberly-Clark (NYSE: KMB), use an average of 40 to 60 percent recycled fiber content in their home tissue products.”

Which is kinda odd, because what the document (PDF) actually says is:

“You may be interested to know that all of the leading premium consumer tissue brands in North America primarily contain virgin fiber.The main reason is consumer preference for certain product attributes, like strength and softness, which decline as the amount of recycled fiber increases. Consumers have voiced that preference through their purchases: consumer tissue products containing recycled fiber accounted for only 1.8 percent of all dollars spent on branded consumer tissue products in the United States in 2005. It’s normal for away-from-home tissue products, which serve markets like hotels, restaurants and businesses, to contain a higher recycled content. Leading manufacturers, including K-C, use an average of 40 to 60 percent recycled fiber content in these products.”

And to think that the Dallas Business Journal said that a Kimberky-Clark spokesman wasn't available for comment. Guess he would’ve been superfluous anyhow, as the DBJ were doing such a good job of being creative with the truth all by themselves.
mamagaea: (Loreal Snape)

President Bush just proposed drastic cuts to NPR and PBS. We've stopped similar cuts in the past, but enough is enough: With the new Congress, we can make sure this never happens again.

We need Congress to save NPR and PBS once and for all.

Can you help out by signing this petition to Congress? It's really easy—just click the link below:

mamagaea: (I'm a Man of few words)

[This is a guest post by Tex Dworkin of the Global Exchange Fair Trade Online Store -Ed.] This year marks the 100th anniversary of the Hershey's kiss, and yet a celebration is hardly in order. Why? Because with each bite, we are reminded that most chocolate sold in the U.S. comes from cocoa farms where farmers work in unsafe conditions, receive below poverty wages, many of them children under 14 years old who are forced to work and denied education.

With another Valentine's Day approaching, happy couples will wine and dine, showering each other with flowers, jewelry, and chocolate. Unfortunately, knowing where most chocolate comes from makes it hard to swallow!

It's 2007, and people are finally starting to question where the products they buy are made and whether the workers who made them were treated fairly. Sweatshop-free apparel is becoming hip, and Fair Trade coffee is at least a blip on the map. Yet chocolate is still being made with cocoa beans harvested by children in Africa working in unsafe conditions, while the average consumer has no idea this is going on.

The truth behind chocolate is not-so-sweet. The Ivory Coast is the world's largest cocoa producer, providing 43% of the world's cocoa. And yet, in 2001 the U.S. State Department reported child slavery on many cocoa farms in the Ivory Coast. A 2002 report from the International Institute of Tropical Agriculture about cocoa farms in the Ivory Coast and other African countries estimated there were 284,000 children working on cocoa farms in hazardous conditions. U.S. chocolate manufacturers have claimed they are not responsible for the conditions on cocoa plantations since they don't own them.

Chocolate comes from cocoa, and the cocoa supply is controlled by a small number of companies worldwide that are allowed to function with limited accountability. Hershey's and M&M/Mars alone control two-thirds of the $13 billion U.S. chocolate candy market. The result? An industry marred with child slavery, unsafe working conditions and a cycle of poverty with no end in sight for cocoa farmers. Chocolate companies are not held accountable for sourcing practices, and despite their knowledge about the travesties that occur on cocoa farms, they lack the will to change.

The U.S. chocolate industry has faced multiple deadlines requiring new protocol, and yet little has changed. Under pressure from Congress, in the Harken-Engel Protocol, the U.S. chocolate industry agreed to voluntarily take steps to end child slavery on cocoa farms by July of 2005. This deadline has since passed, and the chocolate industry has failed to comply with the terms of this agreement.

So in July 2005, International Labor Rights Fund filed suit against Nestlé in Federal District Court on behalf of a class of children who were trafficked from Mali into the Ivory Coast and forced to work twelve to fourteen hours a day with no pay, little food and sleep, and frequent beatings. What was Nestlé's response to court questioning? "We are only buyers of a product.”

There are a plethora of examples of company leaders who were publicly criticized for selling clothing lines manufactured by sweatshop workers, Kathy Lee Gifford and designer Jessica McClintock to name a few. Chocolate companies should be held accountable for the conditions of cocoa producers they buy from.

Consumers can hold chocolate companies accountable by choosing only Fair Trade Certified chocolate. It's easy to do. Simply look for TransFair USA's Fair Trade logo on the package. TransFair is the only third-party certifier of Fair Trade products in the U.S. Fair Trade Certified chocolate ensures that no forced or abusive child labor was used. If consumer demand for Fair Trade chocolate increases, perhaps chocolate companies will alter their practices. Thus, buying Fair Trade chocolate can put an end to the disastrous cycle of poverty and child endangerment.

It is estimated that Fair Trade chocolate represents less than 1% of the world's roughly $60 billion chocolate market. According to the Chocolate Manufacturers Association and National Confectioners Association, in 2005 more than 36 million heart-shaped boxes of chocolate were sold for Valentine's Day. How many hours of exploited child labor went into those boxes of chocolate?

So what's a chocolate lover to do? Choose Fair Trade chocolate this Valentine's Day, a sweet deal for loved ones and cocoa farmers.

See also: ::Book Review - Bitter Chocolate
mamagaea: (BLAAUUGH)
Article about the floating island of plastic the size of texas

Many people have seen photographs of seals trapped in nets or choked by plastic six-pack rings, but the poster child for the consumption of plastic debris has to be the Laysan albatross. The plastic gadgets one typically finds in the stomach of the bird could stock the checkout counter at a convenience store.
mamagaea: (Default)
Dear MoveOn member,
Tonight the president is expected to announce a policy of escalation in Iraq. We have to stop it, and the 24 hours after his speech are going to be critical in framing the debate. Congress and the press need to know that there's widespread opposition to this reckless plan.

MoveOn members have already organized hundreds of Emergency Rallies to Stop Escalation in Iraq for tomorrow night. We really need to have a strong turnout at these rallies so the message is heard loud and clear: Escalation is the wrong answer. Can you attend a rally near you in Beaverton tomorrow?

Here are the details:

Beaverton Peace Vigil Escalation - Emergency Rally to Stop Iraq Escalation

SW Hall and SW 5th (in Beaverton)
Thursday, Jan 11 2007, 6:30 PM


Escalate Peace! Join the Washington County Peace Vigil on WEDNESDAY January 10 AND THURSDAY January 11. Your neighbors and friends have been holding a peace vigil on the corner of SW Hall Blvd and SW 5th in Beaverton for over 70 Weeks, every WEDNESDAY evening from 6:30 to 7:30. Please join us for this special event!!! Last week we had 65 people, this Wednesday and Thursday we would love to see several hundred join us for a peace-filled hour in the cool evening.

Message from host: The Washington County / Beaverton Peace Vigil has been meeting at the corner of SW Hall and SW 5th street for over 70 weeks on WEDNESDAY evenings. We are located across from the Beaverton Library on busy Hall Blvd. We will be on the corner from 6:30 to 7:30 on WEDNESDAY evening AND on Thursday the 11th. We have candles, lights and signs, and you are welcome to bring your own. The formal time for this event is 6:30PM to 7:30PM. You are welcome to join us at ANY time. Please come STAND FOR PEACE!!

Corner of SW Hall and SW 5th, across from Library
Beaverton, OR 97005
mamagaea: (Default)
Subject: Help the new Congress start right


As you may have heard, Nancy Pelosi is hoping to start off big with her "100 Hours Agenda." It's a bunch of progressive proposals, including cutting oil subsidies to invest in clean energy, getting cheaper prescription drugs for seniors, and raising the minimum wage. (AND CUTTING STUDENT LOAN INTEREST RATES BY HALF!)

Naturally, the big drug companies, oil companies, and business lobbies are fighting hard to stop her.

MoveOn has started a petition to Congress so we can show our representatives we're ready for some real progress, and they should act quickly to pass the 100 Hours Agenda.

Plus, the total signature count and some of our comments will be read out loud on the floor of Congress during the debate -- so the more we get, the louder our voice will be. You can join me in signing today at:

mamagaea: (Default)

Obesity and discrimination

Category: ResearchSocial
Posted on: July 10, 2006 6:19 AM, by Dave Munger

research.gifNearly all prejudicial attitudes are now taboo in America. Sixty years ago, it might have been acceptable to deny someone a job or service in a business because of skin color or gender, but now such overt discrimination is almost universally condemned. Even people with disabilities are accommodated. Yet although obesity is on the rise in America, overweight people continue to face difficulty. They are rated lower on job performance evaluations even when the work they do is qualitatively the same as normal weight individuals.

Why does such discrimination continue even as overt discrimination is on the decline? "Justification-suppression" is an impressive model of the cognitive mechanism behind prejudice. The idea is that individuals may hold prejudicial attitudes, but whether these attitudes are actually expressed in behavior depends on whether they are justified or suppressed. Under this model, discrimination against obese people is seen as justified because obesity is perceived as something an individual brings on himself. The model also explains implicit biases, because these are simply biases which are successfully suppressed or are never justified.

If the justification-suppression model is valid, then decreasing the justification for discrimination should decrease the incidence. A team led by Eden King and Jenessa Shapiro designed an intriguing study to see if they could manipulate discriminatory behavior towards obese individuals. They recruited ten women to pose as shoppers at a Houston-area shopping mall. Each shopper visited 16 different stores, wearing one of four different outfits. Two of the outfits involved prostheses designed to make the women appear to be obese. No changes were made to the women's face or hair styles, however. Below the fold is a set of photos of one of the shoppers in each of her outfits:


As you can see, one of the outfits was casual -- a sweater and jeans -- while the other was professional -- a suit (though I think Clinton and Stacy might have something to say about the cut of those jackets ... yikes!). Each came in an average-weight and obese (about size 22) version. A panel of 125 volunteers looked at photos of each of the shoppers in their obese outfits and none of them indicated any suspicion that the shoppers were wearing prostheses to make them look overweight. Each shopper was accompanied by an observer who entered the store before her and monitored her interactions with the salesperson. The shoppers recorded their conversation with the salespeople, which followed a script indicating they were buying a present for their sister. Afterward, the tape recordings were analyzed, and both the observers and the shoppers rated their interactions with the salespeople for factors which indicated either overt or interpersonal discrimination (things like not smiling, rudeness, and prematurely ending the interaction).

While no overt discrimination was found (and none would be expected -- the salespeople clearly wanted to make a sale, no matter the customers' weight), an analysis of the recordings and the shopper ratings indicated that the obese shoppers were treated worse than the average-weight shoppers. What's more, the entire difference can be accounted for by worse treatment of the casually dressed obese shoppers:


King et al. argue that these results support the justification-suppression model: The salespeople had a bias against obese people. In the case of the professionally dressed shoppers, they felt that the obese shoppers were attempting to compensate for their weight by dressing better, so the salespeople supressed the expression of their bias. In the case of the casually dressed shoppers, salespeople may have felt that the obese shoppers had "let themselves go," and so justified the expression of their biases.

However, the researchers point out that this analysis calls for an awful lot of conjecture. Perhaps salespeople aren't analyzing the shoppers' desire to control their obesity. While the analysis makes sense, we can't know for certain, since the salespeople weren't asked.

So King and Shapiro's team designed a second experiment designed to test this proposed mechanism more directly. They used the same protocol in a new shopping mall -- shoppers wearing obesity prostheses or regular clothing -- but this time all the outfits were the same. What was changed in this experiment was the script. Half the time shoppers carried a Diet Coke, and the other half the time they had a Dairy Queen Blizzard (an ice cream treat). The shoppers carrying Diet Cokes called attention to their drink with the following script:

This Diet Coke is so good! I hope you don't mind me drinking it in here. I am on a diet. I just did a half-marathon with my friends. Good gosh, it felt great. Anyway, back to your suggestions.

The shoppers with Blizzards used this script:

This Dairy Queen Blizzard is so good! I hope you don't mind me drinking it in here. Thank goodness I am not on a diet. I have these friends who just did a half-marathon. Good gosh, I could never do that. Anyway, back to your suggestions.

Take a look at the results:


The results are almost indistinguishable from the first experiment. Obese people who were seen as making an effort to lose weight were treated equally to average weight people, but obese people who were not, were treated worse. So now we have two independent confirmations of the justification-suppression model in action -- one where discrimination appears to be justified in the mind of the salesperson on the basis of clothing choice, and one where discrimination seems justified because of unhealthy food and exercise choices.

King et al. are careful not to argue that obese people should therefore spend all their time trying to convince people that they are attemting to lose weight, but they do make a strong case that obesity discrimination is activated when people believe that obese people are responsible for their own condition. They also point out that businesses could be losing money by allowing their sales staff to treat customers differently. In a separate survey, they found that overweight customers did feel they were treated worse than average weight customers in a variety of stores, and that customers who were treated worse were less likely to return to the store.

King, E.B., Shapiro, J.R., Hebl, M.R., Singletary, S.L., & Turner, S. (2006). The stigma of obesity in customer service: A mechanism for remediation and bottom-line consequences of interpersonal discrimination. Journal of Applied Psychology, 91(3), 579-593.
mamagaea: (I am NOT BACON!)
America: Freedom To Facism
Copyright © 2006 Cinema Libre Studio

Determined to find the law that requires American citizens to pay income tax, producer Aaron Russo (“The Rose,” “Trading Places”) set out on a journey to find the evidence. Neither left, nor right-wing this startling examination of government exposes the systematic erosion of civil liberties in America since 1913.

Trailer (2:52)
Rating: Not yet rated
In Theatres: July 28th, 2006
mamagaea: (Default)
(4-21) 2112 Fundraiser at the Village Ballroom

Date & Time: Friday, April 21, 2006 9:00 PM
Location: Village Ballroom
700 NE Dekum
Portland, OR

Friday April 21st Friends of Friends presents a 2112 Fundraiser to benefit those affected by the Seattle shooting

With performances by-

Freaky Chakra-

In 1993 San Francisco based producer, Daum Bentley released his first 12" EP, Halucifuge under the Freaky Chakra guise on the seminal west coast underground label, Existdance records.

One of the first artists to sign with the Astralwerks label, Bentley released his major label debut, 1995's Lowdown Motivator to critical acclaim. His innovative sound and abandonment of traditional West Coast influence was exemplified in the album tracks "Budded on Earth to Bloom in Heaven" with Curve vocalist Toni Halliday and the psychedelic romp "Peace Fixation".

Chakra joined forces with electro/experimental phenom Single Cell Orchestra for a good year and a half to become one of the most sought after live techno PAs in the states playing some of the biggest club gigs and warehouse party's around. Shortly after Astralwerks released 1996's Freaky Chakra vs. Single Cell Orchestra, an album that is considered a classic with its left of center tribal techno anomalies and mutant electro tracks.

With the 1998 release of Blacklight Fantasy, Freaky Chakra continued to explore the vast electro-space of dance music possibilities, with a darker experimental electro and techno-house vibe that saw tracks from it played by DJs ranging from Sasha to Richie Hawtin.

During and since the Astralwerks days Bentley has recorded projects with such respected artists as Meat Beat Manifesto's Jack Dangers and John Selway and remixed people like Dubtribe, Cornershop, Charles Webster, Rabbit in the Moon and many others. Throughout the years the Freaky Chakra live PA has played all over the U.S., Canada, Puerto Rico and down in Australia.

In October 2005, we saw the release of the third solo album from Freaky Chakra, "Moonroof Operator" on Run Recordings. This release featured tracks culled from recent singles off of the Crayon, Imix and Hallucination labels.


Solovox is the sound of keyboardist and producer Carlton Tietze. Bringing together elements of melody, emotion, rhythm and keyboard prowess, Carlton has created something original. With electronic music shifting and mutating into forms that are leaving more and more listeners cold, Solovox is delivering something different...and at the same time more familiar to the ear.

Solovox is a three-year experiment that is now reaching it's true potential. Reinvigorated by the variety of electronic music in 2001, Tietze decided to find out what happens when a keyboardist of rock and funk merged with state-of-the-art production in the digital realm. The results have been explosive in the Portland club scene, as Solovox blurs the line between a DJ and a band. Moving from vintage synthesizers to the most modern software emulations, he flows from one keyboard to another, while improvising with all-original loops and samples created for the show. From downtempo lounge to funk to house, even to psy-trance...the crowd just dances and enjoys. And the thrill of watching it all happen live is a treat that few other acts can follow. And as someone who has been playing keyboards since the Reagan administration, the musicality of a Solovox show is often unheard of in the realm of today's electronic scene.


Upon first glance Dale the Nail looks a bit rough around the edges. Dale has played with the who's who of Portland music and still remains a fixture in the Portland community. For this night Dale will grace us with an acoustic performance and sing in ways that will move you.


Mattie2k a Chickhed loyalist will loan his talents this night and grace the audience with an experimental downbeat barrage. His sounds border on abstract jazz and glitch-hop musings.


C120 is a collaboration of three electronic musicians from the budding electronic music scene in Eugene, Oregon. Together with their laptops and synth gear, they improvise lush, synthetic atmospheres that will transport you to their world of tribal grooves, ambient explorations, and downtempo melodies. Members include Branden Marshall (QRX), Cameron Gaut (modcam), and Jim Johnson (jamos).

+more to come

Chickenhed will be running the downstairs so be very afraid.

$5-$5000 Any donation is gladly accepted. All profits from this event will go into assisting the survivors of the 2112 shooting in getting moved into a new residence. It will also assist with simple needs such as toiletries and food items.

18+ / 9p-4a. Located at the Village Ballroom 700 NE Dekum

If interested in volunteering please contact us through

There will be no paper flyers for this event so please repost this listing everywhere appropriate. Thank you
mamagaea: (storm cloud)
Found this lovely gem on [ profile] mobyjournal

SUV's are the scourge of the planet and it just doesn't seem like the auto manufacturers care. They guzzle gas and destroy the atmosphere. Every time I see an Escalade or a Hummer, I just want to pummel the driver yelling WHAT ARE YOU THINKING!

Well, somebody's thinking. Chevy launched an advertising campaign asking for submissions for car ad spots, calling it Chevy's Apprentice. I urge EVERYONE to view this before Chevy realizes it's there and yanks it.


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