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Rustbelt Radio for June 13, 2005
by Rusbelt Radio Collective Tuesday, Jun. 14, 2005 at 1:40 PM (email address validated)

On today's show... * We speak with the local group 'RESYST' about the upcoming pridefest and the radical queer movement * And we present the final piece in our three part series on Coal and its effects in the community. We will hear from organizers who are fighting to promote clean energy and what the possibilities are for sustainable alternative energy sources in the United States .... but first, these local headlines.

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Welcome to this week's edition of Rustbelt Radio, the Pittsburgh Independent Media Center's weekly review of the news from the grassroots, news overlooked by the corporate media. The show airs every Monday from 6-7pm on WRCT 88.3FM in Pittsburgh, PA and every Saturday from 5-6pm on WVJW Benwood, 94.1 FM in the Wheeling, West Virginia area. And we're also available on the internet, both on W-R-C-T's live webstream at W-R-C-T dot ORG and archived at radio dot I-N-D-Y-P-G-H dot org.

On today's show...


Local News

[5:30] Protest held at the national coal show in Pittsburgh

Last week US Coal Company executives attended the National Coal Show in the city they call the center of the coal industry: Pittsburgh. But while the industry is predicting a "bright future" for the coal market, not everyone is happy about the new growth and techniques of coal mining. A coalition of groups from urban and rural western Pennsylvania and West Virginia held a protest march outside the coal industry trade show. And clean energy activists also hosted a conference on the costs of coal power and argued for cleaner renewable alternatives.

[ coalprotest_rustbelt_edit.ogg: 5:10 rustbelt-edit of coal protest story with voiceovers ]

[2:00] PA Bill would ban Internet Hunting

An unusual coalition formed by the Human Society, wildlife preservation organizations, and the National Rifle Association is lobbying for a bill that would ban Internet hunting.

Just one company, San Antonio Texas-based Live Shot, currently offers Internet hunting. The controversial practice allows would-be cyber hunters to remotely control a high-powered rifle through their computer,lining up animals in their sites and killing them with the click of a mouse.

It doesn't come cheap: fees total thousands of dollars for the chance to hunt for a few hours, and don't include the cost of shipping the dead animals to the remote-control hunters.

Heide Prescott of the National Humane Society said (quote) "We see it as pay-per-view slaughter and it has no resemblance to traditional forms of hunting."

According to the Post-Gazette, six states already ban the practice. And Texas Governor Rick Perry is expected to sign a bill into law this summer that would ban Internet hunting in that state.

The Pennsylvania bill would not stop Pennsylvanians from making use of the services of companies that, like Live Shot, are based in other states. The bill would only bar any company from starting an Internet hunting facility in Pennsylvania.

However, a Virginia representative to the US House has introduced a bill that would make Internet hunting in any state a federal crime punishable by 5 years in prison.

[0:45] Counter-Recruitment update

As Rustbelt has previously reported, the Pittsburgh Board of Education is considering a policy that would let students more easily opt out of providing their information to military recruiters. The policy would also allow organizations that have information about the downsides to a military career to share information with students. The Board of Educations' regular public hearing is scheduled for this evening at 7PM, at the School District office building in Oakland. Parents and concerned citizens can voice their opinions on the bill at that hearing.

The Pittsburgh Organizing Group made its third visit to the Marine-Army recruiting station in Oakland on Saturday. They held a peaceful picket outside the building for about an hour. The event was part of their ongoing campaign against military recruitment activities. On Friday the Army reported that it had fallen short of its recruitment targets for the fourth month in a row.

[1:00] Wecht Saga Continuing

In the latest twist in the ongoing investigation of Allegheny County Coroner Cyril Wecht, the FBI is now investigating the alleged movement of files from Wecht's office just days after the District Attorney first questioned whether Wecht had improperly been mixing his public and private practices.

Steve Zappala, who has long been in disagreement with Wecht over his findings in several cases related to police killings in Pittsburgh, first announced that an investigation might begin into Wechts affairs in February. The Federal Bureau of Investigation later joined in those efforts.

Wecht's attorney denied that the moving of the files was related to the investigation, saying that the movement of the files had been planned earlier.

Wecht has been accused of improperly making use of County facilities for his private practice, which includes preparing of findings for court in wrongful death suits, mostly by using the County car and in one case using the County's laboratory for an examination. In that case, Wecht had compensated the county for what he thought was the value of the time he used the laboratory.


For more on all of our local news stories, visit pittsburgh dot I-N-D-Y-M-E-D-I-A dot O-R-G.

[ optional music break ]

Global News


You are listening to Rust Belt Radio, the Pittsburgh Independent Media Center's weekly review of news overlooked by the corporate media. We turn now to headlines from Independent Media Centers around the world.

[4:01] Roadless Summer Campaign against the nafta superhighway

This summer, activists in the midwest are uniting to fight against the proposed highway I-69, also known as the "Nafta Superhighway". Homefries from Boston has more...

[6:30] Houston PD uses new tactics in controlling Halliburton protest

A protest of Houston-based Halliburton on May 18th left 16 arrested, and a dozen trampled by police horses.

Last week, the Houston Police Department released a report on its handling of the protests. From KPFT Houston, Renee Felts has more.

[ Audio Clip - ]

[1:00] GMOs: Saskatchewan Organic Farmers to sue Monsanto

Organic canola growers from Saskatchewan, Canada, are struggling to sue Monsanto Canada and Bayer CorpScience, even after the judge rejected their efforts to pursue a class -action lawsuit mid-May.

Real World Radio has the story.

[ Audio Clip - ]

[5:00] Gas Wars Erupt Again in Bolivia

In the latest phase of Bolivia's "gas wars", President Carlos Mesa resigned on June 6 under heavy pressure from social movements to nationalize oil production. Peasant farmers are taking over oil fields, transportation is paralyzed and the U.S. Embassy has begun evacuating personnel. On June 9, President of the Senate Hormando Vaca Diez declined the Presidency, making head of the Supreme Court Eduardo Rodriguez the President and automatically triggering new elections.

Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez on Sunday blamed his US counterpart George W. Bush for the crisis in Bolivia, saying Bush's "poisoned medicine" of free-market democracy has been rejected by Latin America.

Chavez said the protests in the Andean nation were sparked by popular opposition to capitalist free-trade policies advocated by Bush.

[ From Pacifica network program Empire Notes, Rahul Mahajan (RAH hool Muh HAH jin) comments on the situation in Bolivia. ]

[ CLIP 4 minutes - Empire Notes commentary 3261-20050613-06132005commentary.mp3: Bolivia Commentary ]


You can read more about our global news stories by visting I-N-D-Y-M-E-D-I-A dot O-R-G. We'll be back after a brief break.

[ Musical Break ] YES!!!!



That was .... Welcome back to Rust Belt Radio, the Pittsburgh Independent Media Center's weekly review of news from the grassroots.

[8:00] Resyst: Light at the end of the Fort Pitt Tunnel

For 'The Light at the end of the Fort Pitt Tunnel', Rustbelt Radio's weekly feature of a local grassroots organization, we have an interview with Resyst. Resyst's mission is to work toward acceptance of the multitude of queer identities and unification through the shared struggles that their differences create in order to broaden their foundation to affect change. Resyst intends to strengthen the queer liberation movement and inspire the abolition of heterosexism and homophobia in progressive groups through meetings, planning, education, outreach, and direct action.

Kahlia Latte told us about the invisibility of transgender and bisexual folks within the mainstream gay and lesbian movement and how "queer" is a more fluid, inclusive term for those that feel they don't fit into the ridgid definitions of gay and lesbian. We spoke with Marie Szkozklas -->(SCOTCH-Less) about the history of Resyst.

Another Resyst member, David Meieran, stressed the necessity of a radical queer movement.

This weekend Resyst will have a radical contingent in the Pridefest taking place downtown. David will tell us more about it.

If you would like to join resyst and the radical contingent at Pridefest this saturday june 18 you can meet them at 10:30 am at Fifth ave and ross st. You can also see their website at

[16:00] Sustainable Energy at the True Cost of Coal Conference

Rustbelt radio has recently reported on the destructive effects of coal mining in Pennsylvania and the Appalachian region. While there are many people fighting against the coal industry and other dirty forms of energy, there are also individuals working to promote clean, sustainable alternatives not only for the environment, but also for communities and workers.

Last Sunday at the True Cost of Coal Conference held here in Pittsburgh we heard from clean energy activist Mike Ewall, who works with Action PA in Philadelphia. He believes that with the combination of conservation, efficiency, wind, and solar power, we can be utilizing cleaner sources of energy within 20 years.

Mike Ewall explains the possibilities for energy conservation in the U.S.

Later Mike Ewall also described the potential for solar power.

And finally, Mike Ewall discussed the implementation of wind power in the US.

At the conference we also heard from Rebecca Cooper of the United Steel Workers of America union. Rebecca works to promote unity between labor unions, environmentalists, and community activists. These "blue-green alliances" work to break down the barriers between working class people and environmentalists. Here Rebecca describes her work in further detail.

That was Rebecca Cooper of the United Steelworkers of America.

For more information on the clean energy alternatives discussed by Mike Ewall log on to And for more information on Blue-Green Aliances, log onto


[m:ss] Calendar of events

And now we present the Indymedia calendar of events:


Thanks for tuning in to Rust Belt Radio here on WRCT Pittsburgh and WVJW Benwood.

Our hosts this week are [ Carlin Christy ] and [ Andalusia Knoll ] with contributions from [ Matt Toups , Quinten Steenhuis ]. This week's show was produced by [ Quinten ]. Special thanks to all of our hosts, producers, and contributors.

Your story submissions are welcome! To get involved with Rust Belt Radio, or to send us your comments, email RADIO at I-N-D-Y-P-G-H dot ORG. All of our shows are available for download on our website at RADIO dot INDY-P-G-H dot ORG

Tune in next week at this time for another edition of Rust Belt Radio, the Pittsburgh Independent Media Center's weekly review of the news from the grassroots.

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Rustbelt Radoi for June 13, 2005 - ogg vorbis
by Rusbelt Radio Collective Tuesday, Jun. 14, 2005 at 1:40 PM

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