As the State Turns

By Johnny Beaver

stateturnssymbolCover Oregon vs. Oracle Suit: Round 1

And the victor goes to… the State of Oregon. Woo! That’s sort of bittersweet, isn’t it? The vehicle may have been broken, but these jokers still drove it off the road. U.S. District Judge Anna Brown has shot down Oracle’s attempt to consolidate a bunch of competing cases and take them to federal court instead. Apparently there were procedural problems with Oracle’s filing, which roughly translate to “No, because you’re sneaky and we judges do not approve of such things.”

A lawyer for the tech firm has made a public statement that they will refile their request; meanwhile Oregon celebrates the way one would if they threw in a game of dodgeball and totally missed the opponent, but hey, at least they didn’t catch it and take our heads off in a riposte, right?

Perhaps next week something equally as concerning to Oregonians will happen with this case. Until then, I wish you luck insofar as you aren’t one of the poor sods trying to figure out whether they need to re-enroll or not.

Juggalos vs. Portland

Yeah, you heard me right. A total of 14 businesses in North Portland have been peppered with threatening messages by way of carrier pigeon (flyers actually, sorry) from a new gang in town. Made up of juggalos. According to KOIN 6 news, the specific threats were “Vacate or ____ our ____.” and “You have been targeted by the Juggalo family to get ___ out.” What these reported black lines, hyphens, or underscores mean is anyone’s guess, though I’m willing to bet they’d offend quite a few sensibilities.

The area, near the Hopworks Urban Brewery around North Williams Street and North Shaver Street, has seen an uptick in car break-ins lately, though the area has been a target for what has been described as anti-gentrification vandalism over the last few years as a result of property values going up, new businesses moving in, etc.

Did I mention that police have zero evidence of any connection between any of it? So. It’s likely that the flyers are just a bit of trolling, and there’s no actual “juggalo gang” in the area. Good job KOIN, have a Faygo.

In other news, I’m so tired that I just tried to scroll this document using a touch gesture on my desktop computer from 2006. So, no, you’re not the only one who has done that.

Saints Preserve Us!

Remember that possible recount of Measure 92? Well, it looks like it’s going to happen, as the gap in votes appears to have shrunk to under 1,500. Will it wind up passing, or won’t it? That’s not really the concern here. More votes = pass. It’s called democracy, at least through beer goggles.

The real concern Oregonians should be asking themselves is this: if the measure still fails, will the next attempt be any… you know, better? Will it be penned this time to differentiate between “genetically engineered” and “genetically modified,” because that’s just one of many problems with the language, and it’s a pretty huge one in terms of creating a massive dent in the measure’s feasibility. This has been often quoted as a major concern by those whose interactions with science go beyond yelling “Because science!” in an LBCC bio class. By the way, if you’re a Corvallis parent and that was your kid yelling that… next time I am going to smack him.

It seems safe to speculate that a lot of “no” votes came from those of us that absolutely support labeling, but not an version that has been criticized as unscientific, potentially making a confusing issue that much more clouded. Looking at recent results, it doesn’t seem crazy to think that a corrected text would likely sweep an election no matter how many out-of-state bank accounts try to muscle their way in. Sorry, Monsanto.

The fact is, however, companies like Monsanto are the extreme, and most people on both sides of the labeling issue have a problem with them. Learning to differentiate between the dangers of Monsanto’s gene gun/Roundup Ready, Mortal Kombat-style genetic engineering and the legitimate, safe application of said technology to benefit the human folks that are you, your family, and your friends… that would make for a pretty unstoppable horde of informed voters. And good lord, who doesn’t want to see that? Why, the last time something like that happened was probably in ancient Greece.

By the way, Measure 92 left out a bunch of really cool stuff, such as how that totally organic ruby red grapefruit you’re eating was born of more radiation than it took to turn Bruce Banner green. But don’t take my word for it, dun-dun, dun.

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