Steve R

Town Meetings are a common form of town legislature in New England, and they're also a working example of direct democracy. In this podcast, Steve Revilak talks about the ins and outs of Massachusetts town meetings. The first half covers town meeting as an institution, and the logistics of getting elected: pulling nomination papers, gathering signatures, and campaigning. The second half covers the mechanics of how town meetings are run: the moderator, the warrant, motions, substitute motions,...
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I spent the evening of Nov 12th at the Democracy Center in Cambridge, MA, listening to Leslie James Pickering talk about his activist work, and years of FBI surveillance. Pickering's career as an activist began in the mid 1990's, doing civil disobedience to protest animal experiments. His first direct action took place at a facility which was studying cats. The researchers would take a cat and drop it, from high enough to cause minor injuries. They'd observe the cat's behavior, and drop i...
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This podcast was recorded at True Progress, an Aaron James campaign event. True Progress took place at the Somerville Armory on August 30th, 2016. The program is 0:00 Intro 3:24: Bill Rifkin (President of MassCann), on Ballot Question 4, which would legalize marijuana in Massachusetts. 7:42: Catherine Rifkin (Director of MassCann), on marijuana criminalization and prohibition. 13:36: Steve Mandilli on the benefits of Medical Marijuana for disabled veterans 27:58: Lori (BSafe) Law Enfo...
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Maya Shaffer is a reporter for the Bay State Examiner, and someone who's used Massachusetts public records law enough to know it inside and out. This is a great talk, where Maya tells her stories of public records requesters in the state of Massachusetts. Highlights include, The time Maya made an in-person FOIA request to NEMLEC -- the Northeaster Massachusetts Law Enforcement Council. NEMLEC wasn't sure how to respond to an in-person request, so they called 911. An agency proposed a $...
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Terra Friedrichs talks about how communities can use municipal rights to protect their local interests, especially where the environment is concerned. The talk covers permits, the administrative court, home rule, public necessity, and thinking outside the box of allowable activism. This talk was recorded during the Massachusetts Pirate Party's annual conference, which was held on June 25th 2016. Listen below, or download your own copy from the Internet Archive.


This episode contains three short talks from PirateCon 2016. (0:00) James O'Keefe on Our project to map surveillance cameras via open street map. (6:10) Noe Kamelamela on how to choose a username. (12:23) Kendra, on cryptoparties, free software, and dealing with personas. Listen below, or download your own copy from the Internet Archive.


For months, our fair city of Somerville has had a "Black Lives Matter" hanging across the front of city hall. This week, the police union decided to hold a demonstration about it; the union wanted the banner taken down, and replaced with one that said "All lives matter". It's not the first time a police union has taken this kind of position, and it got me thinking about the differences between "Black Lives Matter" and "All Lives Matter". Let's start with "Black Lives Matter". This statemen...
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In this panel discussion Paul Paradise and Kendra Moyer talk about the dark web, Tor, gamergate, internet trolls, and the use of distributed denial of service attacks as a way to supress political speech. This panel was recorded during the 2016 convention of the Massachusetts Pirate Party. Listen below, or download your own copy from the Internet Archive.


This podcast was recorded during PirateCon 2016, on June 25th. James O'Keef, Noe Kamelamela, and Aaron James discuss the finer points of politics and organizing. The discussion covers petition gathering strategies, working with volunteers, third parties, building coalitions, marijuana legalization, and the one-party system in Massachusetts. Listen below, or download your own copy from the Internet Archive.


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