Siege Notes, Portland June 30

Protesters were down to the dozens last night as they harassed a platoon of cops in front of Portland’s Justice Center and US District Courthouse.
Earlier a demonstration of a hundred or more gathered at the site of a shooting two years ago by Portland State University police. Disarming PSU cops has been a campaign for as long as they’ve been armed and is energized like every other progressive campaign in the wake of the city’s surrender to BLM.

The graffiti remains up at the courthouse and the Justice Center looks like a plywood fort; everywhere else in the city the siege has lifted, reflecting the reality of a city government abandoning its police–and courts.

The various murals and memorials, especially the central shrine they’ve made of the Apple store (4th and Yamhill downtown, home to (nominally, still) high-end shops like Tiffany, Louis Vuitton and Apple, is now intersectionality avenue, where everything remains up. In the early days (we’re in day 34 or 35 now) city workers came out daily to clean up the graffiti, but no more.

No doubt dismantling the artworks will be troublesome (I fully expect much of it to end up permanent or sent to museums and schools). It’s not clear if Apple will want or be able to reclaim its place.

A lurid pall of delusional menace hangs over a city afraid to speak.

As elsewhere the police are being restricted in their rules of engagement at the same time they battle an adapting insurgent force, like the boys in Vietnam. No, Rambo, you don’t get to win this time either:

Portland police face additional restrictions on their use of less-lethal munitions to control crowds, based on a new temporary agreement filed in federal court Friday night.  

The new agreement is part of a temporary restraining order that the nonprofit Don’t Shoot Portland obtained against the city, barring police use of tear gas except when lives are at risk. The 14-day temporary order was extended until July 24.  

Under an amended order approved Friday and reached jointly by both sides, officers are now restricted in from firing less-lethal launchers into a crowd if people engaged in passive resistance are likely to be struck.  

The bureau’s use of rubber ball distraction devices can only be used if the lives or safety of the public or police are at risk, and shall not be used to disperse crowds when there’s little or no risk of injury to the public or police, the agreement says.  

Handheld pepper spray canisters also “shall not” be used against people engaged in passive resistance, and police should minimize pepper spray exposure to peaceful demonstrators.

Pressure from below comes from the earnest rabble put on the streets and from above by complicit governments feigning surrender; this pattern is playing out almost everywhere that counts.

Meanwhile Coke would like to buy the world a gag. As Facebook and others are pressured from within by their own woketroops to censor, big corporations pressure them from without, and the ADL seeks to mop up what’s left of dissident media with its “Stop Hate for Profit” campaign, boycotting social media until they get in line with the new cruelty:

They allowed incitement to violence against protesters fighting for racial justice in America in the wake of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Tony McDade, Ahmaud Arbery, Rayshard Brooks and so many others.

They named Breitbart News a “trusted news source” and made The Daily Caller a “fact checker” despite both publications having records of working with known white nationalists.

They turned a blind eye to blatant voter suppression on their platform.

Could they protect and support Black users? Could they call out Holocaust denial as hate? Could they help get out the vote?

They absolutely could. But they are actively choosing not to do so.

99% of Facebook’s $70 billion is made through advertising.

Who will advertisers stand with?

Let’s send Facebook a powerful message: Your profits will never be worth promoting hate, bigotry, racism, antisemitism and violence.

Just as the high-low combination of mob violence and entrenched power is remaking your city right now, the same dynamic is remaking your media, finally and incontrovertibly, with employee social justice auxiliaries pressuring social media companies from within, and corporations pressuring them from without with such as the ADL campaign.

Meanwhile Governor Kate Brown extended Oregon’s state of ermegency regarding Covid-19, noting the first two weeks of June saw an increase in cases but making no mention of the siege chaos–the neglected and more immediate state of emergency, at least here–that is likely behind it.

Still, our numbers are small and the action is based on “the potential for exponential growth by mid-July”; as nothing can be trusted any more, you have to wonder. Kate Brown might in fact be hoping to dampen the protests a bit with this.

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