Portland proposes a special tax on companies where CEOs make 100X more than median employee

Environmental lawyer-turned-Portland City Commissioner Steve Novick has a cool use for the new SEC rules requiring companies to disclose executive pay starting in 2017: he's going to impose special taxes on businesses where the ratio of CEO pay to median worker pay exceeds 100:1 -- an increase of 10% for 100:1 companies, and 25% for 250:1 companies. Read the rest

Zine goddess Chloe Eudaly is running for Portland City Council

Chloe Eudaly, whose zine emporium Reading Frenzy (previously) and publishing makerspace the Independent Publishing Resource Center are PDX institutions, is running for Portland City Council, campaigning on affordable housing for all in a city whose longterm residents are being left behind by runaway rents and spiraling housing prices. Read the rest

Portland made a fantastic video to woo Japanese tourists

"Odnarotoop" is Portland spelled backwards with Japanese pronunciation. It's also the name of this Terry Gilliam-esque video with a catchy song.

Here's the English translation of the lyrics:

These are the mountains that rise in the distance And this is the river that runs right beside us And these are the bridges that always connect us in Odnaraotoop

These are the streets where we meet up for breakfast and maybe some ice cream or a few dozen donuts and these are the places we drink when we’re finished in Odnarotoop

Odnarotoop, Odnarotoop everyone’s open, so do what you want to in Odnarotoop

And this is the music we play in our basements and our in the street where the city can hear us so sing right along if you’re planning to join us in Odnarotoop

Odnarotoop, Odnarotoop everyone’s open, so do what you want to in Odnarotoop

This is the coffee we drink in the morning and this is the treehouse my neighbor is building everyone’s open and ready to greet you in Odnarotoop

And these are the bikes that we like to ride naked and this is the art that we’re all busy making everyone’s open so do what you want to in Odnarotoop

[via Tofugu] Read the rest

Dildos dangling from power lines in Portland

Portland is facing a rash of hundreds of dildos hanging from power lines. According to Portland General Electric, the sex toys don't pose a fire hazard. Read the rest

Portland cops charge homeless woman with theft for charging her phone

In Portland, OR, "Jackie," a homeless former social worker with muscular dystrophy, was hit with a misdemeanor theft charge for charging her phone from a plug on a planter-base on a sidewalk; she spent a day in jail when she missed her arraignment. Read the rest

White cop, black boy hug at Portland rally for Ferguson: story behind striking photo

This striking photo by Portland-based photographer Johnny Nguyen is one of the most memorable to emerge from protests around the country.

31 communities vow to create local gigabit broadband

Across the US, 31 communities have joined forces to make the dream of fast, affordable, and reliable gigabit-speed broadband a local reality. The Next Century Cities program, launched this week, hopes to defeat the forces holding broadband back. The 31 inaugural signatories are: Read the rest

The narrative lottery at XOXO

Glenn Fleishman reports from Portland's beloved arts and technology festival, where a darker sense of mission and meaning took hold in the event's third year.

Brian Kidd is the Unipiper: the unicycling bagpiper

In perhaps the most Portlandian combination of talents, a unicyclist wears a Darth Vader mask while playing flaming bagpipes, as Chris Higgins relates.

Welcome to Portlandia, John McAfee

"My life is sort of weird. I don't back off from things."—John McAfee, the newest weird resident of Portlandia. The software millionaire is on the run from police in Belize, and says he plans on staying in the Oregon town for "a few years." A local TV news station caught up with him for an interview. At Stumptown coffee, of course. Perhaps Fred and Carrie will befriend him.

Guys, this interview is pretty good. Snip:

John McAfee: Oh the media has no clue. Last night I actually started putting photos up of teams I used to collect information. That’s the first time I’ve done that.

[KATU reporter Emily Sinovic]: To collect information on what?

McAfee: On what was happening in Belize. The links between the Belize government and Hezbollah and the giving of false identifies of Hezbollah terrorists. They’ve been doing that for years.

Sinovic: What is it about Portland that makes you feel safe?

McAfee: If anybody is after me, it will be the Zeta cartel, Hezbollah. I can’t imagine Hezbollah showing up in Portland without being noticed. I mean, this doesn’t look like a place where they would fit in. Or maybe they would. I do not know. And I’m farther away from any other place in America from where the problem is.

The latest post on McAfee's crazyblog: "The Girls."

McAfee: "A brief introduction to some of the the girls who... lived with me full time." Read the rest

Here is a video of a person in a Darth Vader mask and cape, and a Utilikilt, riding a unicycle, playing Star Wars music on a bagpipe, in Portland, OR

As you do.

Darth Vadar bagpipe unicycle (Thanks, Fipi Lele!) Read the rest

Books-rupturing-the-walls installation

Warey Myers designed this installation for the new offices of Portland's VIA Advertising Agency, which are in the Baxter Building, home to the Portland Public Library from 1888-1960: "Books breaking through the (faux) wall downstairs, referencing the "basement stacks" every library has. In this case it's as if those stacks had been sealed up during some remodel, and are anthropomorphically breaking through, referencing the old library, history, roots, poltergeists..."

^^^ Wary Meyers The Basement Stacks ^^^ Read the rest