RPA Activist Info Masthead
Issue: #147
September 21, 2014  
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Richmond Progressive Alliance   

Get your Team Richmond yard sign now
9/24: Social Media Leaders Confab
Richmond Rising III
Ideas & info to counter the hits
Sat. 9/27: Richmond Garden Party for Jovanka
9/28: "Are you game?" FUNdraiser for Eduardo
Tues. 9/30: Berkeley Benefit for & with Gayle
Recent articles & interviews by & 'bout Richmonders
Public says hate speech has no place at Council
Big Team Richmond signs going up all over the place
Tired old ideas that hurt Richmond
Chevron Dumps Renewables

Bobby Bowens Progressive Center
1021 Macdonald,


Since we don't take corporate money,  our success depends on our ability to use "people power" to promote activities and programs in Richmond. The RPA Activist is one tool we use to put out our ideas. One simple thing that YOU can do is to forward the RPA Activist to friends and acquaintances. Thanks.


If the hit pieces & Chevron-funded ads are getting to you,
Get your Team Richmond yard sign now!

The yard sign won't stop the onslaught of the "hit piece" mailers or door hangers "delivered by Richmond residents to your door," but they cheer me every time I see them on the street, and they let your neighbors and passersby know that you support Team Richmond.

To get your (free) yard sign, email walk4teamrichmond@gmail.com or leave a message with your number & address at 510-412-2269
.  Delivery will be arranged!  Bet you'll be glad you did it!

Wed. 9/24, 1:30pm, BBPC, 1021 Macdonald Ave.
Calling Social Media Leaders
We need to step up our game in the six weeks remaining before the election and the ten days before mail-in ballots get sent. Come help Team Richmond make "friends," gain "followers," and win the election. Email kathleenwimer@gmail.com for info.
Richmond Rising III:  Pitching in for Team Richmond. 
Forty canvassers went out Saturday 9/20.

Here's the crowd of volunteers who spent their Saturday morning canvassing for Team Richmond.  They partnered up and went to neighborhoods that hadn't yet seen a lot of walkin', knockin' 'n' talkin' for Eduardo, Jovanka, and Gayle.

Photo: Juan Reardon

Many returned for a lunch together at 1pm, highlighted by a talk from Richmond author and activist David Helvarg, who noted that he'll "believe that corporations are people when Texas puts one on death row." 


If you're willing & able to take on an area in your neighborhood that you'll canvass regularly, that's ideal.  If you're willing to give an hour or two once or twice, that would still help.  Either way, please get in touch: Email or sign up online, here.  If you want a partner, there are seasoned canvassers to meet and walk with you, available most days from 4-6, and on weekends.  There's a briefing every Saturday at 9 at BBPC, 1021 Macdonald, near BART.  No wheels are needed.  

Join the Team!      


"There are 2 poles of power in this country:
corporations & people." *
Truth in Advertising?

For our toolboxes:


Here are some resources if you find a need to counter the intense offense mounted by Moving Forward ("Major Funding by Chevron"):

  • The Team Richmond website has a button at the top entitled "Hit-Piece Response." Click it to see what Jovanka, Gayle, Eduardo, and their supporters have to say that counters the sly, distorted, and often nasty attacks.
  • Accentuate the positive: There are working papers on education, jobs & businesses, and Doctors Medical Center under Priorities on the Team Richmond website.  Equip yourself with an understanding of the Team's positions on these issues, as well as the progress that's already been made.
  • Take a look at the RPA facebook page, a source of quick commentary, community perspective, and often a welcome chuckle or shot of solidarity.
  • Make your own signs.  Take a selfie or a group photo with them.  Design a tee-shirt, or show what you'd put up "if you had a billboard," a door hanger, or a bumper sticker.  Send the image as a jpeg attachment via email to RPAActivist@gmail.com. Some of them will be featured in the next issues of the RPA Activist.  (You'll be credited unless you request otherwise.)  Besides the satisfaction you'll get from expressing yourself, there might be a tangible prize, eventually.
  • Remember that "you protect that which you love," *  and take another look at the Team Richmond window signs.  They declare:  We Love Richmond.
Want this bumper sticker?  Ask for it at the BBPC.                                Graphics by Michael Beer


 * Both quotes from David Helvarg, 9/20, speaking at Richmond Rising III. 

Sat. 9/27, 6pm, in a Richmond garden:
Fundraiser for Jovanka
Sun. 9/28, 4-6pm, at BBPC, 1021 Macdonald
"Are you game?" FUNdraiser for Eduardo
  This completes Eduardo's September Triple Play.  Now he's coming up to bat. 
Tues. 9/30, 6-8pm, 1737 Allston Way, Berkeley:
Come hear Mayor Gayle & Mike Parker at a benefit.

Note the request for RSVPs: Send them to Lsupport@aol.com
If you'd like something to sink your teeth into, there's been
Some wonderful media on (Team) Richmond
Since the last issue of the Activist, there's been some truly wonderful coverage of Richmond issues and achievements.  The ones highlighted here happen to be by Richmond residents.
  • North & East's recently retired railroad conductor Brian Lewis told Steve Early: "Bakken crude oil is pretty damn volatile. But, with a lot more of it to transport in the last year or so, the oil industry just dictated to the railroads: 'Find us more cars!' So the railroads went out and grabbed any kind of tank cars they could find, including older equipment not designed to load and carry volatile materials. There's a lot that were just used to haul wax and tallow and other materials like that. Some oil train cars today are not even up to standard in terms of their wheels, brakes, and springs. It's scary-you need to have the right equipment and more trains, not giant trains a mile and a half long.  And they certainly shouldn't be allowed to operate, now or in the future, with one-man crews..." [--as was the case with the disastrous Lac-Megantic crude-by-rail explosion and fire.]  Read the whole profile, part of the In these Times "Working" series, here.
  • Here's a link to the webpage for the TRANSFORMING REALITY Internet Talk Show that features an interview with Gayle McLaughlin.  It's produced and hosted by Robert "Han" BIshop, Ph.D..  From there, click on the small POD button near the top on the left.  Or use this link to start an mp3 playback of the 16 minute piece.  How often do we hear mayors talk about making political decisions from the heart?
  • Steve Early does another great job in debunking the claims of the recent mailings, a hostile Moving Forward website, and "push polling" (where leading questions are designed to shape, not honestly solicit, opinion) that target Eduardo Martinez as an anarchist "...'so radical that he does not think the city council should exist' --a truly unusual stance for any city council candidate anywhere(!)"  Enjoy the whole article here and, please, share it with your friends and neighbors.
The RPA website has other links to recent articles and stories that may delight,  inspire, or occasionally outrage you.  Give yourself the opportunity to listen to the recent "Up Front" KPFA interview with Mike Parker and Andrés Soto or read over the full transcript; you'll find those both linked on the website.   

Public speaks out in support of Jovanka Beckles
Back from recess, City Council tackles disruptions
Photos: Tarnel Abbott
Some of them drove up in their truck, a great rolling billboard. Scores of supporters of Vice Mayor Jovanka Beckles gathered outside in the Plaza beforehand, then filled the council chambers to capacity.  More than fifty people signed up to speak during public forum.  The overwhelming majority* used their minutes to make it clear that they wanted an end to the misogynistic, homophobic, and personal attacks that Jovanka has endured.  The many eloquent and passionate speakers included a handful of religious leaders.

"I realize that disruption and hate speech aren't easily handled by the law," Jovanka said. "I encourage the community to hold council members accountable for setting a respectful tone and making it very clear to their supporters that hateful behavior and hateful remarks will not be tolerated."     


Later Tuesday evening (9/16) the council voted 6-1 (with a dissent from Corky Boozé) to direct staff to draft several new rules intended to better control disruptions; they will probably be read for the first time next month.  


* Forum speakers also included a group from the Richmond-Regla, Cuba Sister City Committee, who used a creative tag-team approach to read their statement clarifying the struggles of the Cuban 5, in response to inaccuracies in a recently mailed "hit piece" against Gayle McLaughlin.   


We're here, we're there, we're.. where?
Do you know where these signs are?
[The answer's in the last section.]

Have a good location for a large Team Richmond sign?  
Please send an email here.
Richmond is better now.
Chevron + Nat Bates?  Not so much.

Take a look:


Nat Bates Promotes Drivers License Check Points that Target Latinos 
 Y mira, en español:

Por favor comparta estaPlease share this video. 
Maybe they figure leasing some land to MCE is more than enough?
Chevron sells off renewables subsidiary

Although "Chevron executives frequently touted the division's clean-energy work in speeches and in testimony before Congress," it seems like the profits might not have been high enough for the fossil fuels fossil.  Read one story here
Those big Team Richmond signs are at
Hill View Center on San Pablo Dam Road

Did you recognize this location? Bravo! Ain't Richmond grand?   

Easy, fast, & free!
Give your endorsement to Team Richmond today

If you've read this far, odds are you're a Team Richmond supporter.  Please show that publicly by adding your name to the candidates' list of endorsers.  
All that's needed is a brief e-mail to langlois-rine@comcast.net, with "endorse Team Richmond" in the subject line. Include your full name, city of residence, and any affiliation or title you would like to include (affiliation is for identification purposes only).
It only takes a moment and will be greatly appreciated!  Thank you. 

 RPA Membership Drive Continues 

Become an RPA member
Under the leadership of Mayor McLaughlin and her progressive colleagues on the City Council, 
Richmond has drawn local, national and international attention with its innovative solutions to persistent problems.  Let's keep the momentum going!  As we gear up for the coming election year in 2014, RPA needs your support more than ever. Join now and be part of history in the making.
Dues are just $12 per year (or more if you are able), and go towards paying our share of rent at the Bobby Bowens Progressive Center, 1021 Macdonald Ave--a space that is used by RPA and other organizations for educational forums, town hall meetings, strategy sessions, campaign organizing, celebrations and many other events open to the community.
By joining now you'll get our e-newsletter and action alerts, and opportunities to participate in building a better Richmond.  We'll also give you a large, attractive tote bag--ideal for grocery shopping, now that Richmond has enacted a plastic bag ban as another step toward protecting our precious environment. 
Don't put it off--  write, call or e-mail us now!

Join the RPA

RPA Symbol

We can only keep this city moving forward, protect our health and safety, and resist corporate domination of our politics if enough of us join together. We are asking you to take sides--to join the RPA.     




UNITY - One Richmond: African-American, Asian, Latino/a, Native Americans, white, united for the good of all.

DEMOCRACY- Government of, for, by the people; all the people, not just those rich enough to buy influence.

DIVERSITY - of ideas: Democrats, Greens, independents, or other. We sometimes disagree but respect each other enough to keep working for a better Richmond together.


  • participate in periodic RPA discussions and events of community interest;
  • staff the office, make phone calls, meet in committees, arrange events and parties;
  • work on campaigns of RPA-endorsed candidates for city council;
  • engage with neighbors;
  • help shape RPA and its priorities;
  • join in support of other allied organizations working to make a difference in Richmond;
  • read the newsletter at www.richmondprogressivealliance.net for what REALLY goes on in Richmond;
  • eat; have fun.

Download the membership form and mail it in with dues.


Send us an email at info@richmondprogressivealliance.net with the information requested on the form.  And go to the RPA web page. Press the "Donate" button in the left column and make a dues contribution. An additional contribution is greatly appreciated and helps us keep dues low for those with low income.


Some History and Understanding of the RPA
  Social Policy Article

Long article with pictures 

--have patience in downloading


RPA Activist Info

is for Richmond community members who want to be active in taking on the problems of the environment, racism, joblessness, housing, and crime to create a healthy Richmond. We believe that community involvement means more than voting every two years. It means regular communication with the candidates we elect, letting them know our issues and positions, supporting them as they try to take our issues forward. It means we attend meetings, use email, phone our neighbors, or go on marches building an organized movement to create real change.

Comments and columns are welcome. Articles and columns are the views of the authors, unsigned text  the views of the editor, Patsy Byers, and not necessarily those of the RPA. Send photos, articles, and comments to  RPAactivist@gmail.com or call  510-595-4661. Longer articles of analysis and archives of past newsletters can be found on our website.