Words & Photos by Josh Brokaw The phrase “pseudo-event” has been rattling around my head a lot lately. It probably made its way there from an Atlantic story last December, because once that Very Serious magazine re-discovers a popular 1950 or ’60s bit of political wisdom, it likes to use it at least twice. To say “pseudo-event” is simply to say an event is put on by an entity with power, for the purpose of getting media attention. Congressman Tom Reed’s town hall meetings are…Continue Reading “Notes & Photos: Tom Reed Visits Ithaca”

By Josh Brokaw The Ithaca College contingent faculty union is planning a strike and has filed federal charges of illegal union busting activity by the IC administration. After a bargaining session held on March 8 and another, emergency, session the morning of Thursday, March 9. A tweet by the @ICContingent Twitter account sent early Thursday afternoon said “We have seen no movement whatsoever from the administration. We will #strike on March 28th and 29th.” Read More: Feb 15: Ithaca College Faculty Authorizes Strike March 2:…Continue Reading “Ithaca College Union Plans Strike, Alleges Union Busting by IC Admin”

By Josh Brokaw Cornell Graduate Students United presented a petition with more than 1,200 signatures in support of their organizing effort to Cornell administration on Wednesday, March 8. After three years of organizing, CGSU will be holding a vote for union recognition by the time of Cornell’s spring break, which starts April 1. According to organizers with the American Federation of Teachers and New York State United Teachers, the union affiliated with CGSU, the 1,200-plus signatures are all graduate students and that number is a…Continue Reading “Cornell Grad Workers Filing for Union Election”

By Josh Brokaw The night Tom Reed visited Ithaca, his little one-desk office on the fourth floor of the Gateway center was redolent of pad Thai, pizza, chicken wings, and a storebought sesame and shiitake salad dressing that flavored the only vegetables available in an anarchic desktop buffet. The buffet was catered by a stream of well-wishers and fellow travelers who had come by to see the 24-hours-a-day occupiers of a room rented by the New York 23rd congressional district’s representative not so people can…Continue Reading “On the Extreme Ithaca Liberal Occupation of Tom Reed’s Office”

Glaciers might again cover the Finger Lakes before every person arrested protesting gas storage next to Seneca Lake gets their day in court. Since October 2014, protesters associated with We Are Seneca Lake have been staging acts of disobedience at the gates to the U.S. Salt facility in the Town of Reading, a few miles north of Watkins Glen. Crestwood Midstream, the facility’s owner, has made plans to store liquified petroleum gas (LPG) there and expand the storage of methane in caverns created by decades…Continue Reading “Seneca Lake Gas Storage Protest & Permits: Your One Stop History”

The Rev. Osagyefo Sekou visited Cornell on Monday, January 30, to speak on the “task of the artist in the time of monsters.” Sekou is a St. Louis native who spent three months in Ferguson, Missouri, among the protesters who took to the streets after Michael Brown’s killing by police there in August 2014. A third-generation Pentecostal preacher, Sekou opened his talk to an over-capacity Goldwin Smith Hall classroom with the observation that in our society, people can rattle off the names of our monsters…Continue Reading “To Be Human Is A Revolutionary Act: Rev. Sekou On The Artist’s Task In Monstrous Times”

The center of Ithaca’s Commons saw a hastily planned rally take place on the afternoon of Saturday, January 28. In response to President Donald Trump’s executive order blocking refugees from entering the United States for 120 days and blocking entry for citizens from seven Muslim majority countries for 90 days, several hundred gathered in Ithaca for an “emergency rally” to show their opposition to the measure. Laurie Konwinski, deputy director of Catholic Charities Tompkins/Tioga, said the staff there was “heartbroken” to see the hundreds of hours…Continue Reading ““It’s a Sin:” Ithacans Rally to Support Immigrant Rights After Trump Order”

Ithaca College students are back on campus, but some of their professors might not be teaching courses all the spring semester long. Winter break came and went without Ithaca College part-time and full-time contingent faculty signing a contract with the IC administration. The part-time faculty, who currently sign individual one semester contracts for $4,200 per course, have been negotiating with administration since November 2015 for a union contract; the full-time contingent faculty – that is, those who now work on one-year contracts – voted to…Continue Reading “Tenured Ithaca College Faculty Signal Support for Possible Strike”

Trump Smashing Planned In Downtown Ithaca On Inauguration Day

A feast and piñata smashing are scheduled for Friday afternoon in Ithaca, for those who don’t dig the idea of American executive power being passed on from Barack Obama to Donald Trump – or anyone else. The “No More Presidents: Anti-Inauguration Day Assembly” is being organized by Ithaca’s Food Not Bombs group, which serves meals every Saturday afternoon at DeWitt/Shawn Greenwood park in downtown Ithaca. The day will be “a practice of mutual aid for a world with no more presidents,” according to FNB organizers….Continue Reading “Trump Smashing Planned In Downtown Ithaca On Inauguration Day”

“We Cannot Afford the Denial:” NY Senators Asked to Reject Trump Cabinet Picks

A group of about 25 Tompkins County residents visited Syracuse on Monday, January 9, to visit the offices of New York senators Kirsten Gillibrand and Chuck Schumer. They were taking part in the “Day of Denial” declared against President-elect Donald Trump’s cabinet nominees. The Tompkins County group presented the senators’ offices with letters demanding they lead the opposition to Trump’s nominees to head the departments of State, Interior, and Energy, along with the Environmental Protection Agency. From a press release sent out by the group:…Continue Reading ““We Cannot Afford the Denial:” NY Senators Asked to Reject Trump Cabinet Picks”