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UNDERMINING RIGHTS

As the administration raises pressure on Congress to pass Trade Promotion Authority to seal the deal on the Trans-Pacific Partnership, I wanted to bring your attention to a letter written to Congress by President Obama’s mentor at Harvard, Laurence Tribe, and a group of senior legal experts. In the letter, they raise very serious and real concerns about the Investor-State Dispute Settlement (ISDS) system under TPP.  

Oregon’s best wine? Seems a silly question, at first. Pinot noir? Pinot gris? Nah. One very wine-savvy professional is ready to offer a rather shocking response: chardonnay.

A logo with two salmon on your wine bottle doesn’t mean the wine pairs well with salmon — it means the wine came from a vineyard certified salmon-safe.

I’m no oenephile. Don’t get me wrong, I like wine, but its niceties are lost on me, perhaps because in my college years my idea of “good wine” was strawberry Boones Farm, preferably after it had sat in the freezer long enough to give it a certain Slurpee-like texture.

According to recent data, wine now generates $3.5 billion annually and accounts for 17,000 jobs in wine and related businesses in Oregon. Now, that’s impact.

Last summer, I reconnected with a high-school teacher I hadn’t seen for a year. We first met when I was 15, and I had nothing but respect for him and his intelligence. I also had a crush on him for the next four years. Fast-forward a year. He is sexting me and sending dick pics and wants to hook up. He has told me he loves me. I feel violated and tricked, like he was supposed to be someone I could trust and he didn’t respect that. Now I wonder how teachers really see underage high-school girls. This whole experience has made me feel dirty.

Many a romantic notion is attached to wine, like zooming past the city limits, wind in your hair and finding a sunny patio nestled into the rolling hills of a country winery where you can sip vino and take in the vistas. Eugene, however, has more tasting rooms in the city than ever before, easily reached by foot, bike, bus or a short drive.

Even if Joss Whedon hadn’t already been telling the press that he’s (probably) done directing Avengers films, it would’ve been clear to Whedon fans that Avengers: Age of Ultron is his finale.

Like so many of us, I grew up on Sesame Street, that magical Manhattan block where fuzzy puppets and real people cooperate and collaborate and teach the ABCs of life. Seated before the television in my pajamas, laughing at Ernie’s antics and wondering what it was like inside Oscar’s garbage can, I was gifted the rudiments of an education that was at once practical and deeply moral.

In Eugene, we have debates about debates. 

Eugene School District 4J school board candidate Colin Farnsworth says the April 30 4J School Board Candidate Debate, organized by south Eugene neighborhood associations and moderated by EW, is censoring his voice in the school board election. Event organizers say they’re simply following the debate guidelines of the League of Women Voters.

The legislative session in Salem passed a major deadline on April 21: Any bill that didn’t pass out of its original assigned committee is effectively dead. Some bills combatting climate change and protecting the environment didn’t make it out of committee before the deadline. 

ODOT is currently spraying roadsides. Call Tony Kilmer at ODOT District 5 at 744-8080 or call 1-888-996-8080 for herbicide application information. Hwys. I-5, 58, 99, 101, 105, 126 and Beltline were sprayed recently. ODOT also plans to spray the entire length of Hwy. 36 soon.

Parvin Butte has been in the public eye ever since developer Greg Demers decided to mine the Dexter landmark for rock products after purchasing it in 2009. This spurred the creation of an online episodic series, and now the story continues as gravel from the quarry has been linked to at least 11 popped tires in a four-day period in April along Creswell’s Ricketts Road. 

The Oregon Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) is accepting comments on Murphy Company’s application for Clean Water Act construction discharge permit coverage until 5 pm on Thursday, April 30. The project is at Murphy Company’s plywood facility located at 2350 Prairie Road, and involves the disturbance of 5 acres or more of land. Visit goo.gl/Yp4iAK for information on how to submit comments. DEQ sent Natron Wood Products a warning letter on Feb.

When we heard Christian Appy talk about his new book at a Morse Center event on the UO campus last month, we knew American Reckoning was a must read for more understanding of the “Vietnam War and Our National Identity,” as he subtitles it. Appy is a professor of history at the University of Massachusetts Amherst and the author of two previous books on the Vietnam War.

Kathmandu has been a sister city to Eugene since 1975 and many Eugeneans, including Councilor Betty Taylor, have visited there. The earthquake death toll in Nepal grows by the hour. The best way to help Kathmandu right now is through financial donations. The website kathmandurelief.org has been recommended by the Eugene/Katmandu Sister City Association, but the organization does not currently have 501(c)(3) status, so donations are not tax deductible. See eugeneweekly.com/blogs for updates.

We hear The Barn Light is looking at opening a new pub and restaurant down on lower 8th Avenue in the bottom floor of the new Northwest Community Credit Union. Sam Bond’s Garage opened Sam Bond’s Brewing across the street last year. That area near the U.S. Courthouse has a lot of potential with The Hub student housing nearby nearly completed and redevelopment coming for the EWEB riverfront property across the tracks.

• The Lane Peace Center’s free eighth annual Peace Symposium is Thursday, April 30. Two indigenous activists are keynote speakers. Suzan Shown Harjo is a poet, writer, lecturer, curator and policy advocate. Dennis Martinez is founder of the Indigenous Peoples’ Restoration Network. The morning session will be from 10 am to 12:30 pm in the LCC Longhouse. The evening session will be from 7 to 9:30 pm in the Center for Meeting & Learning on the LCC main campus. For more information visit lanecc.edu or email taylors@lanecc.edu or call 463-5820.

Baltimore electronic composer Dan Deacon is shaping up to be far more than the avant-garde party-guy flavor of the week he seemed destined to be when he smashed onto college-radio charts with 2007’s Spiderman of the Rings. Fast-forward five years to the critically acclaimed and orchestrally driven America, and Deacon seemed poised to become some kind of indie-electronica Philip Glass.

Grant Kwiecinski, aka GRiZ, is a 24-year-old DJ and producer from Detroit. Watch his concert footage and find crowds donned in neon and screaming over thunderous bass with beach balls sailing everywhere. Many deem this pop, and it’s certainly popular: 2012’s “Smash the Funk” already has more than a million listens on Spotify.  

Pacific Northwest post-punk trio The Ghost Ease rides a fine line between raw, quiet-loud-quiet indie rock and brooding darkwave. 

“I definitely let his royal purple-ness influence this record,” says Ruban Nielson, Unknown Mortal Orchestra bandleader. The popular Portland band is preparing to release their Prince-influenced new album Multi-Love May 26 on Indiana’s Jagjaguwar label.

We could be electing a feminist president, a champion for women — totally awesome! But we’d better brace ourselves. With Hillary Clinton as the presumptive Democratic candidate, we’re barreling into an 18-month spin cycle of hateful hype. 

When Lane United soccer club returns to Willamalane Center to kick off their sophomore season with an exhibition game on May 8, expect the team to build off the momentum they created in 2014.