Supporting our Service Members and Their Families

by Steve, February 10th, 2012

People like me who are opposed to war are often pitted against those who serve their country. This is a rhetorical trick, of course, which can easily be turned on the tricksters. After all, those who advocate sending young men and women to fight and die and get maimed in wars and occupations of choice are on thin ice when they claim to “support” the brave individuals they use as geopolitical pawns.
Coast Guard Vessels, downtown Portland, Ore.

It’s sad and unfortunate that the military-industrial machine provides the only sure-fire jobs program for the poor in this country.

My beef is with the trap, not the quarry. (Since this is such a simple distinction, I have to assume the righties who don’t get it are being disingenuous. Or, in some cases, maybe they’re just plain dumb.)

I recently found my photo above was used on the cover of a newsletter (PDF) put out by the Navy League of Santa Barbara, a civilian non-profit organization in support of sea service personnel.*

You know I’m not going to be all rah rah for this group, or agree with them politically on much (if anything). But we can surely agree that, whatever our political differences, the life choices of individual sailors, soldiers, marines and airmen are not at issue.

Rose Quarter club level(Did I ever mention I was a finalist for a Navy ROTC scholarship before withdrawing? How different my life might have been if I’d gone to sea as a junior commissioned officer instead of on the road with a band of hippies. And speaking of my photos being picked up, the ad agency that was putting together the annual report for NW Natural — sheesh, another Neil Goldschmidt connection — bought the rights to use this photo, but they never used it, apparently, at least not in anything I could find publicly.)

*The photo, like most of my photos on flickr, is offered to anyone for free use under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution, Noncommercial, Share Alike license. My thanks to the Navy League of Santa Barbara for adhering to this license and giving proper attribution. I’ve found several instances where people have felt inclined to use my photos without following the simple terms of the CC license.

Best. Timelapse. Evah.

by Steve, January 21st, 2011

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Watch full screen. A Russian research ship on a supply mission to Antarctica. Some really surprising and amazing imagery.

Eat the rich!

by Steve, June 18th, 2009
The World

The World, a cruise ship that has been converted to a cross between a Pearl district condo tower and the world’s largest SUV, has been moored downtown all week. With 165 multi-million dollar condo units, 270 crew members, five restaurants, a pool and a theatre on board, The World has the equivalent of a small municipal power plant on board spewing carbon and particulates into our fair city for the benefit of its ultra-rich owners. Continuous circumnavigation is a hell of a lifestyle, but not exactly what you’d call “green” or “sustainable.”

The Oregonian ran a cute little puff piece today, giving credence to cruise ship industry flacks (“Travel experts”) claiming these people are spending $125 a day per couple in Portland during their stay. The travel agency that arranged their shore leave claims it could closer to $400.

Breakfast on the world


Meanwhile, as the idle, profligate rich enjoy breakfast on their balcony, and as we bask in the glory (envy?) of their extravagant lifestyle, the City of Portland announced the elimination of 90 jobs previously thought safe, with another 45 jobs in jeopardy and furloughs for those lucky enough to keep their jobs.

The new Gilded Age is upon us.

Industrial Portland

by Steve, February 8th, 2009

M/V Campanula and M/V Pharos SW

In transition

New and old

Sustainable, of course

Sustainable Portland

Washington Voyager leaves dry dock in time lapse

by Steve, July 14th, 2008

I’ve lived in Portland, Ore. for 19 years, North Portland for 8, but this is the first time I’ve seen a vessel leaving dry dock at Portland Shipyard.

This is a time lapse of the 627 ft. tanker Washington Voyager leaving dry dock 3. This is about 2 hours condensed into about 2 minutes, with music by Stan Freberg. Enjoy!

Ship Spotting on the Willamette

by Steve, April 13th, 2008

Portland Shipyard
Vessels lined up in berths 301-305 at Portland Shipyard, North Portland.
Update: The ship in the foreground above is the navy refueling tanker USNS Henry J. Kaiser (T-AO 187).

Portland Shipyard
View of Portland Shipyard from University of Portland, downtown Portland in background. Dry docks #1 (left) and #3 (far right, partially visible, with lifted vessel).

Ship Spotting

by Steve, April 6th, 2008

Something to do on a Sunday morning…

Bulk Freighters on the Columbia

Bulk freighters achored in the Columbia

Bulk freighters anchored in the Columbia River, viewed from Kelley Point Park in North Portland.

Global Endeavor

Bulk freighter Global Endeavor loading grain at O Dock, Willamette River, North Portland.