We just noticed an opinon poll on www.uomatters.com asking readers to give UO President Michael Gottfreson a "final grade" on his performance. Looks like 387 readers responded, giving the prez 248 F's. Also on the blog is the observation that Gottfredson's name has been removed from the web page about commencement. An earlier page talked about Gottfredson leading the traditional "Duck Walk." Fear of protests?
The Economic Policy Insitute's Family Budget Calculator "measures the income a family needs in order to attain a secure yet modest living standard by estimating community-specific costs of housing, food, child care, transportation, health care, other necessities, and taxes. The budgets, updated for 2013, are calculated for 615 U.S. communities and six family types (either one or two parents with one, two, or three children).
"As compared with official poverty thresholds such as the federal poverty line and Supplemental Poverty Measure, EPI’s family budgets offer a higher degree of geographic customization and provide a more accurate measure of economic security. In all cases, they show families need more than twice the amount of the federal poverty line to get by."
The calculator shows numbers for specific areas, including Eugene-Springfield.
The event we've all been waiting for... The World Naked Bike Ride is happening at 4:30 pm Saturday, June 14, and this year the ride was gather at 4 pm at the east end of Skinner Butte Park, just north of the Campbell Community Center. If you need a GPS, the rough address is 200 E. Cheshire.
The flyer says, "We will join thousands of other cyclists around the world to protest oil dependence and celebrate the power and individuality of our bodies ... We will ride nude (or nearly nude) to symbolize the fact that bicyclists are vulnerable sharing the road with 2-ton metal monsters spewing toxic fumes and all of us are vulnerable because of our addiction to fossil fuels. "
For more information, call Jain at 484-1680 or Ralph at 954-9465. See also http://wiki.worldnakedbikeride.org/index.php?title=Eugene
An online survey regarding the city of Springfield’s historic places is now open for comments. See http://wkly.ws/1rz
The survey is being conducted by the Springfield Historic Commission which invites residents, business owners, property owners and anyone who has an interest in the importance and future of Springfield’s historic places. The survey will close June 30.
Contact Molly Markarian, senior planner, at 726-4611 or email firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
"A Spirited Bourrée" Concert and Exhibition Tour will be at 2 pm Saturday, June 7, at the Jordan Schnitzer Museum of Art on campus. Free. UO voice instructor Laura Wayte and her students will perform a recital of Catalan and Spanish songs. We had a wrong date for this concert in Brett Campbell's column this week.
Whistleblowers get encouragement from a new organization supporting the release of information exposing constitutional violations, corporate corruption and secrets that are not in the public interest. The group is called Exposed Facts. Video features Norman Solomon, Jessalyn Radack, Daniel Ellsberg and Kirk Wiebe.
Credit Oregon's land use regulations or Eugene's efforts to keep within its urban growth boundary or our economic recession. Regardless, Eugene is ranked fourth in the nation in a new University of Utah analysis of cities in terms of "smart growth" and resisting sprawl.
Rumors that the Eugene Celebration and parade are being canceled this year are true, according to Brendan Releford of Kesey Enterprises, the private organization that runs the celebration along with the McDonald Theater and Cuthbert Theater. A press release is expected to be sent out to media at about 5:30 pm today (Tuesday, May 3)
Releford says the event was financially successful last year for the first time but crowds downtown at evening peak times were a problem. "The size of the event doesn't fit the core anymore," he says. "We tried to come up with a footprint this year that makes sense and we've hit roadblocks at every turn."
"We want to come back strong next year," he says. The parade has also been canceled for now, but doing just the parade is "not out of the question."
Western nations have been embroiled in Middle East politics for centuries, actually millenia, but do we really understand the complexities of that part of the world? The Bush-Cheney administration, for example, was clueless in getting us involved militarily in power struggles that have been going on for centuries. This Vox.com website has a series of historical maps that can shed a little light on why the Middle East is the way it is today.
Windham Hill recording artist Scott Cossu will be at The Jazz Station in Eugene Saturday night, May 31. Show begins at 8 pm. Joining him with be John Croarkin and Bruce Cole. $10 or $8 for members. Email email@example.com to get on the mailing list.
Corvallis attorney and Pacific Green Party activist Blair Bobier has an essay in Common Dreams today on "The Power and Potential of DIY Democracy."
"A seismic shift in the American political landscape has gone largely unnoticed," he writes. "Yet, the implication of this political earthquake knows no bounds."
Bill Moyers takes a look at the radical right-wing agenda of ALEC, the American Legislative Exchange Council, that is trying to change national policy through manipulating state legislatures.
Frank Moore, age 91, is well known in Eugene and around the region for his longtime conservation work on behalf of Oregon rivers and his unique story. He spoke at the McKenzie Flyfishers monthly meeting May 19 and has given a TEDxPortland talk about his life.
Rachel Maddow takes a look at more odd political goings-on in the Beaver state this week, including Loren Parks and his weird interventions into Oregon causes and candidates.