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April 18, 2014 04:20 PM

UO law prof Rob Illig got a little hot under the collar the other day and his series of emails went viral. As The Oregonian puts it, it's not "cute-puppy viral" either. UO econ prof Bill Harbaugh called attention to rants (and lists the sites that have picked up the story) the on his UO Matters blog

According to the Oregon Law Blawg, in its response to the brouhaha, the issue was a proposal that a group of law faculty came up with — " to divert the law school’s portion of the faculty merit pay funds to a post-graduate fellowship program for new law grads, in lieu of accepting a pay increase."  

In other words, because it is hard for law students to get a job after they graduate, the faculty wanted to help them out. According the website Above the Law, which calls itself "a behind the scenes look at the world of law," only 57 percent of 2013 law school graduates are  "employed in full-time, long-term jobs that require bar passage."

Illig's posts about the proposal made at a meeting that he did not attend contain gems like "Is this some kind of faculty version of white-man's guilt?" 

He writes, "As I learn more of the details of Friday’s proposal, I am even more perplexed by its logic and frightened by its poison," and continues:

"Voting on this important a decision without notice and without serious consideration was a gross breach not only of procedure but of TRUST.

What did the agenda say? “Discussion of Graduate Fellowships.” Pardon my French, but this is absolute bullshit. Colleagues do not ambush one another like this.

How can I trust the administration or any of my faculty colleagues? No wonder we’ve become a third-tier law school. Who’s going to want to come here to study or teach in this kind of poisonous atmosphere?"

You can read them all here.

The Above the Law blog writes Illig's emails "are simply wondrous," and says Illig sounds like "an entitled baby." 

Above the Law also says that Illig has point, if phrased poorly:

"While we agree that it may be unfair for the school to cancel professors’ raises, this is the kind of educational crisis that requires everyone involved to give a little bit more, lest they find themselves on the receiving end of a faculty buyout offer or, worse yet, a layoff.  It’s not like this hasn’t happened at many law schools already. Unfortunately, like the honey badger, Professor Illig doesn’t seem to give a s**t."

In the end, the faculty plan, Illig's viral rant notwithstanding, got shot down, according to the post by Jen Reynolds on the Oregon Law Blawg:

"Last Friday, this group brought this idea as a resolution (included below) to the regularly scheduled faculty meeting. A wide majority of those present voted to approve the resolution—in addition, a majority of the full faculty support the resolution.

We brought the matter to the Provost and although he is supportive of our goals he cannot bend the University rules to make this creative idea happen. However, we remain committed to finding ways to fund post-graduate opportunities and address other employment issues facing our graduates."

April 17, 2014 02:04 PM

Want a chance to discuss public education in Oregon with longtime education advocate Art Pearl? Check out “Who Calls the Shots in Public Education?”, an April 23 meeting featuring Pearl and a group of fifth graders from Edison Elementary School voicing their thoughts on democracy and the Bill of Rights as pertaining to public education.

Last year, the Reclaiming and Renewing Our Public Education Community Dialogues hit the scene with a talk from Nancy Golden, Oregon's chief education officer, and a series of collaborative conversations between students, teachers, parents and other interested community members. The upcoming meeting is the third in the series, following last November's group discussion led by a teacher from Seattle who took issue with standardized testing in Washington state.

These community dialogues seek to address public education issues in a unique way, featuring guest speakers but also allowing time for audience participation and round table discussions. The way we think about public education needs to change, and finding ways to allow everyone to contribute to the conversation is a good first step.

“Who Calls the Shots in Public Education?” starts 6:30 pm Wednesday, April 23, at South Eugene High School, 400 E. 19th Ave. The event is free and open to the public. Check out its Facebook page here.

April 16, 2014 11:23 AM

Moonalice coming to Cozmic May 3.

April 14, 2014 03:49 PM

Tonight is the last night for the Downtown Initiative for the Visual Arts (DIVA) at its 280 W. Broadway space downtown and they want you to come party with them for their "Marker Monday" fundraiser; $5 suggested donation at the door. From 6 to 8pm, DJ Chris Long will spin tunes and Blue Dog Mead refreshments will be available. DIVA's press release says a "free Copic marker to first 120 guests - tag and draw on our gallery walls." So skip happy hour and head to DIVA and support your local arts. DIVA is currently looking for a new space downtown.

April 10, 2014 01:55 PM

Anybody planning a trip up to Portland next week (or later this spring) should check out OMSI's lineup of food science events:

 

Cook for Life 
Tuesday, April 15, 6 - 8 p.m. 
In partnership with OMSI, Portland Monthly presents Cook for Life, a seasonal cooking series focused on healthy solutions, presented by Regence. This month will focus on Cooking with Kids. Enjoy a small-plate, three-course meal with cooking demonstrations by Chef Tse of Regence and nutritional information from Dr. Julie Briley of the National College of Natural Medicine. Kids are welcome with an adult. https://www.omsi.edu/events/cook-for-life/041514
Cost: 10 and under $18; 10+ $28 
 
Food Luminary 
OMSI and Bon Appetit have partnered with local chefs to create a delectable dinner series of science and cuisine. Each dinner will begin with a food science demonstration by OMSI's Food Science Educator while enjoying wine and hors d'oeuvres. After a presentation by the featured chefs, the restaurant will serve a four-course meal created in collaboration with Bon Appetit Executive Chef Ryan Morgan. The guest chefs will also be answering questions and mingling during the dinner. Food Luminary events are for guests 21+ years only. 
Cost: $80 (includes dinner, beverages and gratuity) 
 
Friday, April 18, 6 - 9 p.m. 
Food Luminary Dinner: Bent Brick & Park Kitchen 
Executive Chef Scott Dolich 
 
Friday, May 9, 6 - 9 p.m. 
Food Luminary Dinner: Remedy Wine Bar 
Executive Chef Ingrid Chen 
 
Low Carbon Diet Day 
Thursday, April 24, 11 a.m. - 3 p.m. 
 
In celebration of Earth Week, OMSI and Bon Appetit Management Company will turn Theory into a fun culinary classroom offering ways that guests can minimize their carbon "foodprint" through tasty alternatives to beef and dairy. Through educational demos by OMSI and the makeover of popular dishes by Executive Chef Ryan Morgan, guests will learn that they don't have to go entirely meatless to make their diet a climate-friendlier one. 
 
Blind-Tasting Bingo 
Thursday, April 24, 6 - 9 p.m. 
In partnership with Ecotrust and Edible Portland, OMSI will host Blind-Tasting Bingo, a game of sensory deprivation and heightened exploration. In this quarterly program, each night will feature 10 small plates prepared by Bon Appetit Executive Chef Ryan Morgan. With their eyes covered, the players/guests will try to identify what they taste on a bingo board that includes both correct and false answers. A few lucky winners will receive a prize! 
 
Mother's Day Breakfast 
Sunday, May 11, 8-11 a.m. 
In celebration of mothers, join us for a special breakfast menu, food science activities and cooking demonstrations in Theory. 
April 10, 2014 05:46 PM

Internships! We have them.

Eugene Weekly is looking for news and arts interns with a time commitment designed to fit into a school schedule and the opportunity to publish every week in a newspaper with 40,000 print circulation and an audited circulation of more than 80,000 readers.

Eugene Weekly interns have gone on to jobs at The Oregonian (reporter), Portland Mercury (staff writer/freelance), The Daily Astorian (reporter), Sacramento News and Review (managing editor, special publications) and more and of course at EW itself, as well as internships at other news sources such as CNN, Willamette Week, and The Register-Guard, to name a few. Ideally when interns finish up at EW, they also begin doing paid freelance work for us if they so desire.

Unlike other internships, our interns don't run errands or stay in the background, an internship with Eugene Weekly means writing weeklys news briefs or music reviews as well as the chance to write in-depth features and to pitch (and write) a cover feature. Recent interns have done stories on and interviewed everyone from Arun Gandhi to nationally touring pop stars.   

EW's internship is designed to give interns an education on writing on deadline, writing for an alt weekly and working for a newspaper. Interns get feedback on their pieces, and editing and proofreading experience of their own. The focus of our intern program is on getting students the clips and experience they need to get jobs in the competitive and ever-changing journalism world. We work with our interns' school schedule and schedule intern hours accordingly. The internship is unpaid, though we do try to give perks in addition to the focus on learning such as tickets to shows. 

Internship applications are accepted quarterly and we prefer interns who have taken Reporting 1 or have the equivalent training in basic interviewing skills, writing and the ethics of journalism.

Deadlines for applications are:

Nov. 10 For internships starting winter term.

February 10 for internships starting spring term

April 10 for summer term 

Sept. 10 for fall term.

Internships run the equivalent of two 10-week terms spring-summer, summer-fall, fall-winter etc). Interns are asked to come in to the office twice a week for 2 hours during the work day and are expected to committ about eight more hours a week maxium doing interviews, writing etc. out of the office. 

We are looking for interns in the areas of hard news, environment reporting, politics, sports, arts, music, books and more. The ideal intern is dedicated, loves journalism, fun and willing to throw him/herself into a story. 

To apply please send a cover letter, resume and three clips (articles written for class are fine) to camilla@eugeneweekly.com.

April 10, 2014 09:40 AM

Young the Giant

I caught the last couple songs of Echosmith's set.

April 10, 2014 12:37 PM

Last week, Kathy Jones of Seneca-Jones timber told The Oregonian that the timber company wants to log the Elliott State Forest for " personal reasons" and says of CFD members "“They’re elitist environmentalists, they’re sent from Washington D.C., they’re not about doing anything reasonable.” 

This leaves EW wondering if Jones has ever actually seen a CFD member in person?  Jones was responding to a letter from CFD vowing to put lawsuits on desks and protesters in trees if timber companies bid on parcels of the public Elliott forest that the state is looking to sell into private hands.

The Oregonian writes:

Seneca Jones Timber Co. on Wednesday announced it bid on land for sale in the Elliott State Forest to deliberately challenge environmental groups that warned they would sue to block the state from divesting forestland potentially housing the threatened marbled murrelet seabird.

Kathy Jones, Seneca Jones’ co-owner, said her company didn’t bid on the land because her mill needs lumber but because she and her two sisters refused to be bullied by “eco-radical” environmental groups and believed no other timber companies made an offer.

“It was just like: No, we’re not going to lay down for this,” Jones said. “We’re taking a stand. It’s very much a personal decision. We just decided we were going to do this based on principle and bring it to the public’s attention.”

Like the spotted owl before it, the murrelet has become a cornerstone species for environmental groups seeking to curtail logging in Oregon. The bird’s population in Washington, Oregon and California has steadily declined over the last decade.

This week, the Cascadia Forest Defenders offer an abject apology (OK, not really).

Cascadia Forest Defenders, an organization composed of dozens of community volunteers, would like to express our apologies for causing the owners of Seneca Jones timber company, who are some of the richest and most powerful people in Lane County, to feel so bullied. In this day and age, when many of us are separated from the 1% by dramatic differences in the way we experience daily life, it can be hard for us to remember just how threatened the rich and elite can feel when challenged by those so far below them. We recognize now that a company like Seneca Jones, a company that admittedly can afford to spend millions of dollars out of spite by bidding on a land sale in the Elliott Forest because they "refuse to be bullied " must find it terrifying to have a group of community organizers suggest that people and planet should come before profit and property lines.

However, there are some things that we are confused about. If Seneca Jones wants to clearcut ecosystems for "our children's well-being", why is the company's biomass plant, which pumps an estimated 14 tons of carbon monoxide, nitrogen oxides, sulfur dioxide and other chemical goodies, located within three miles of three separate schools? Folks within that Eugene zip code have almost twice the rate of asthma as the rest of town - that same zip code also has the highest percentage of people living below the poverty line. If Seneca Jones is submitting a bid on the Elliott "for all Oregonians", why does it seem like the wealthiest are profiting at the expense of the poorests' physical health?

Additionally, the United States Forest Service states that only 5% of Oregon original coastal forests remain intact. Obviously, it was naive of us to think that killing most of an ecosystem could ever be enough, that the millions and millions of dollars in profit could ever be enough. Jones family, we are sorry that we may have to prevent your family from owning yet another million dollar racehorse, which is obviously more important then clean drinking water, critical fish habitat, and resilient, healthy forests. 

We really owe you one, Seneca. Something about your recent media comments has activists flocking in, hoping to meet you in the woods. Perhaps it was publicly admitting you intend to clear-cut old growth in East Hakki, which according to the Oregon Department of Forestry has "trees more than 300 years old" which "contain platforms that are suitable for marbled murrelet nests." Perhaps, it's our own excitement, generated by the group of people that saved most of the Trapper Timber sale (remember, that old growth you tried to log in the Willamette National Forest?). Perhaps it is all the neighborhood residents who can no longer breathe in their backyards due to your dirty power plant spewing toxic fumes all over the neighborhood. 

We don’t know what it is Seneca Jones, but people sure are hoping you win that bid.

April 4, 2014 04:03 PM

Walter Cronkite breaks the news to a shocked nation.

April 3, 2014 02:35 PM

Bob Keefer wrote about art and artists for most of the 30 years he worked for The Register-Guard. He retired in 2013 to concentrate on his photography, but continued to freelance arts stories for the R-G. On April 3, a couple days after rounding up support for a well-wishing for Serena Markstrom Nugent after she was fired from the paper, Keefer was informed  in a one-sentence email: "We won't be needing your freelance services anymore.”

Markstrom Nugent, who was fired for checking her email while on pregnancy disability, was not allowed by R-G management to come in and clean out her desk, so employees past and present as well as members of the community were invited to celebrate her and her baby. Keefer sent out this message through a public post on his Facebook page on March 27:

Arts world people: As some of you may know, my former colleague and now very pregnant Serena Markstrom Nugent, the pop music writer for many years, has just been fired from the Register-Guard -- while on medical disability leave! -- after committing the sin of checking her work email from home. Friends are going to assemble in front of the newspaper at 3:30 p.m. today to wish her well as she arrives to clean out her desk. Y'all come!

Today Keefer posted:

Arts world friends,

I've been fired by the Register-Guard. Since I retired from full-time work in July, I've been contributing a couple art reviews to the Arts section each month as a freelancer. But according to a one-line email I just received, “We won't be needing your freelance services anymore.”

There was no explanation, but this follows closely on my public support of former colleague Serena Markstrom Nugent, who was fired by the paper last month, while on medical leave, after working there 13 years. See today's Eugene Weekly for details on that story.

Let's just say I'm not devastated. Of course I'll miss the opportunity to review more art shows around town, but it's time to concentrate on my photography and writing projects, as well as working with Wordcrafters writing conference and Lane Arts Council.

See you on the Art Walk!

Bob

The R-G seems determined to cut off its nose to spite its face — Keefer and Markstrom Nugent have been strong and vibrant supporters of the arts and music community. Nobody wants to see a locally owned daily news source go under. Anyone have any advice for the R-G

April 1, 2014 05:32 PM

Read a review of Mark Naison's new book on public education under attack by conservatives dedicated to privatizing education and the massive profits that are to be made:

http://wkly.ws/1pz

Here's an excerpt from the review:

One of the many carefully orchestrated myths of the corporate “reformers” who have hijacked American education this century is that opposition comes only from the Tea Party and from teachers union ‘dead enders.’ All right-thinking Americans, the myth goes, recognize that our public schools have failed and that education in the United States can only be saved by alternatives like vouchers and charter schools, by public schools staffed by temporary Teach for America instructors, and by imposition of “standards” by an elite that knows what employers need. Led today by Secretary of Education Arne Duncan, billionaire Bill Gates, College Board head (and Common Core State Standards creator) David Coleman, and Students First organizer Michelle Rhee, this well-funded “reform” movement has been steamrolling over resistance for years, opponents often destroyed before they even know they are under attack.