Portland Protests

The Dream of the '90s Died in Portland

Once an up-and-coming city, Portland was destroyed from within by radical activism and political ineptitude.

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A typical night in Portland 2020. The sun is down and a few hundred people, nearly all in their 20s and 30s, start to congregate, by twos and threes, at a prearranged location, usually a city park but sometimes at the U.S. Immigration and Customs building, or City Hall, or, as they are tonight, on the strip of downtown that is home to local and federal courthouses and the city's central police station, known as Justice Center. The drumming starts, there are some Black Lives Matter slogans shouted but mostly it's calls of "FUCK THE POLICE," none of whom are in evidence. They almost never are during the nightly protests, or not until things get hot, when windows are smashed and, for what will end up being nearly 200 nights in a row, fires started.

On this night, I do see one officer. He is sitting alone inside the lobby of the back entrance to Justice Center. Beside him is an industrial fan. When I ask why, he explains that the night before, a group of protesters sloshed in a giant bucket of diarrhea into the room where he sits. The fan is to try to get the stench out. Behind me, five teenagers stand at the curb gawping.

"What happened? What happened?" they ask. They're not black bloc—the darkly clad anarchists roaming the streets—but random teens with random energy who came downtown, maybe, to see what all the fuss was about, to lightly taunt a police officer before running off. The J.V. team.

In their stead there soon appears a young couple. They are outfitted in the black bloc uniform of head-to-toe black; the boy carries a steel baton and wants me to know it. There is nonetheless something patrician about them, as if under different circumstances one might encounter them at cotillion. The uniform conceals their identities, but it can't hide the sense of entitlement that allows them a cheap laugh at the cop, at the fan. What I want to know is, why do they think throwing human shit as a tactic is OK?

"Do you believe that property is worth more than human lives?" asks the boy.

"Do you believe the police should be allowed to murder people?" asks the girl.

I do not mention that, at this point in the year, there has been only one deadly police shooting in Portland. I do not mention it because, after 15 years of living in Portland, I know the city's fledgling anarchists do not deal in facts, that they instead keep a set of platitudes up those black sleeves.

"We've tried for 20 years to do it another way. It hasn't worked. Nothing changes except with violence," says the boy, who is maybe 22. Then he flips me the bird.

*  *  *

The dream of the '90s is alive in Portland
Sleep till 11, you'll be in heaven
The dream of the '90s is alive in Portland
The dream is alive
—Portlandia

Around the turn of the century, Portland was the new belle on the block, not despoiled like San Francisco or in bed with high tech like Seattle. Oregon was not known nationally for much more than Nike and pinot noir and former Republican Sen. Bob Packwood, but maybe (with the exception of Packwood) that was OK. Maybe the city could debut as a fresh canvas, eco-friendly and affordable, a place to achieve your achievable dreams.

A lot of people were willing to take the chance, including my family. We moved from Los Angeles to Portland in 2004, and for a while, everything seemed on the up. The city in 2009 was, according to The Wall Street Journal, attracting "college-educated, single people between the ages of 25 and 39 at a higher rate than most other cities in the country." New residents built the city they wanted to live in: farm-to-table restaurants and 40 million brewpubs and too many bike paths and aggressively progressive politics. When then–Illinois Sen. Barack Obama swung through on the campaign trail in 2008, more than 75,000 people lined Portland's waterfront to see him.

Portland had entered the national stage. Was it a little bit goofy, a little bit twee? Sure, but also energetic in the way a young city can be, with people cutting what seemed to be genuinely new paths. Would the dudes slinging Korean barbecue out of an old R.V. take it brick-and-mortar? Who knew? Who cared? The dynamism of what-could-be hung in the very air.

Air, it turned out, a lot of people wanted to share. Soon, some who'd come to Portland expecting the city to deliver their dreams grew restless. They couldn't find their footing, or couldn't settle on who they were supposed to be, or both.

"I sometimes think we're the scatterbrained generation," a 26-year-old barista with a degree in anthropology told me for a 2010 article I wrote called "Is Portland the New Neverland?" "You have so many choices, and you know what you end up doing? Nothing. You become the D.J.-fashion-designing-knitting-coffee-maker."

Portland's leadership seemed likewise unserious. Democratic Mayor Sam Adams had to fly home from Obama's first inauguration to face charges of having had a sexual liaison with an underage legislative intern with the readymade name of Beau Breedlove, and in 2019 he was accused by his former executive assistant of sexual harassment. In 2015, Democratic Gov. John Kitzhaber resigned amid allegations of influence peddling by his fiancé.

"It's not a well-governed city. It's not a well-governed state. Portland has basically had three failed mayors in a row," says T.B., who previously held a high-ranking position in state government and who asked not to be identified by name. "Tom Potter was a former police chief who became mayor. He was totally hapless. Sam Adams was hyperkinetic, one thing after another and scandalous and so totally ineffective. And then Charlie Hales—I don't know exactly what happened to him, but he also served one term; they all did. And now you have Ted [Wheeler], who I think has had three police chiefs since taking office. There's certainly political instability at the municipal level, to say the least."

Out of instability, good things nevertheless grew—including Portlandia. The comedy series debuted in 2010 and served up the city at its most parodic, with real-life Mayor Sam Adams playing a bumbling mayoral assistant and restaurant diners demanding the life story of the chicken they were about to eat.

The show riffed on slacktivism and five-hour yoga classes and men whose only "safe space" was Reddit. It was often genuinely funny. Who didn't like to laugh at themselves?

As it turned out, a lot of Portlanders.

"Fuck you, Portlandia!" read an anonymous letter printed in one of Portland's alt-weeklies. "I've been here for 20 years. I have watched it change. Portland is now a soulless amusement park for the entitled and wealthy. I hate what this city is becoming and I blame YOU!"

"One thing I do like," wrote the culture editor of Willamette Week, another local newspaper, of the show in 2011, "is the idea that Portlanders are furiously angry underneath their calm demeanors."

Young people had come here to achieve those achievable dreams. What was taking so long? Why did they have to live three, four people to a house, when just a few years ago rent was affordable? When my husband told baristas at the cafés he owned that, no, he couldn't raise the starting wage to $12 an hour—this was in 2014—seeing as they also received tips and health insurance, the response was a general chilling, an "us against them" ethos that seemed to seep into the city. Activists became more vocal, denouncing businesses they saw as anti-LGBTQ. The city's most active queer center was called out in 2015 for being too "white-centric." And in 2016, students at Reed College formed RAR (Reedies Against Racism) and staged a protest against the 1978 Saturday Night Live skit "King Tut," claiming Steve Martin's portrayal of the Egyptian pharaoh was racist. "The gold face of the saxophone dancer leaving its tomb is an exhibition of blackface," a student told the student newspaper.

The anger seemed free-floating; it was gathering momentum, was becoming an identity in itself.

*  *  *

When Donald Trump won the presidency, Portlanders' anger catalyzed into a manic animus that took the form of compulsive marching and letter writing and CNN watching and the schadenfreude-tinged hope that Mike Flynn/Stormy Daniels/the Russia scandal would sweep the president out of office any day now. In this way, Portland was not different from other heavily Democratic U.S. cities.

But there was an additional agitation in Portland, in that the plans of those who'd come to try their hand at baking and winemaking and woodworking and beekeeping had become unreachable. In 2005, you could (and my husband did) open a coffee shop where the rent was $425 a month. The rent was nearly 10 times that much in the last café he opened in 2016. Service industry gigs, where young people traditionally found employment, had become scarcer. The legalization of cannabis in 2015 seemed to offer unlimited potential growth, but the market almost at once became oversaturated, resulting in cheap weed but few who could make a living off it.

Was this fair? To have the nascent dreams one came to Portland with come true for some but not others? Was Portland going to become as inequitable and unlivable as other West Coast cities? If so, whose fault was this? With nearly 75 percent of the electorate having voted for Hillary Clinton in 2016, the Trump administration was an obvious scapegoat. After the Muslim travel ban went into effect in 2017, seemingly every storefront hung a poster that read, "WE WELCOME ALL…WE WELCOME YOU, YOU ARE SAFE HERE."

But there was a problem: Trump was both far away and a master of eliding responsibility. Without the satisfaction of seeing their enemy downed, people grew antsy. Someone needed to take the blame for stagnant wages, and rising rents, and what some saw as the misallocation of social and emotional resources. And so, in a preview of the protests that would come to roil Portland following the death of George Floyd, those who considered themselves more finely calibrated toward injustice than the rest of us took matters into their own hands.

"You probably remember there was massive rioting in the Pearl District the day after Donald Trump was elected. Millions of dollars of damage were inflicted," says journalist Michael Totten. "How many people in the Pearl District voted for Donald Trump? It's probably not even 1 percent. Who on earth are these people who declare war on a place where nobody voted for Donald Trump? That's not how people in a democratic society are supposed to behave. You don't go trash neighborhoods with the opposing political party in a healthy democracy, but they didn't even do that. They declared war on the city as a whole."

If there was zeal in using one's power thus, crude as it was, there was also a mandate: If good citizens needed to fight racism, why not start at home? The food world, which arguably more than any industry had put Portland on the cultural map, was the first target. Andy Ricker, whose restaurant Pok Pok was the only place the late Pulitzer Prize–winning food writer Jonathan Gold wanted me to take him when he visited Portland in the early 2010s, was called out for making Thai food while not being Thai. Two young women closed their burrito cart within days of opening it after they received multiple death threats for making homemade tortillas despite not being Latinas. The local press, which had once lauded such people and places, now published lists of business owners "wantonly cooking the food of other countries, arguably at the expense of people from those very cultures."

So much for ALL being welcome. People instead seemed to be asking: Are you with us or against us?

City leaders, in medias res, decided on "with." People wanted a break on rent? Chloe Eudaly, elected to Portland's City Council in 2016, proposed sweeping changes to rental laws, including requiring landlords to rent on a first-come, first-served basis and, should they choose not to renew a lease, to pay renters to move out. The measure passed (and was one of the reasons my husband and I decided last year to sell our home instead of rent it). A second newly elected council member, Jo Ann Hardesty, demanded that the Gun Violence Reduction Team, a police unit dedicated to investigating shootings, be defunded, noting that it disproportionately impacted people of color. A 2019 resolution to ban hate groups, without defining what a hate group was, passed unanimously. Only two people at the public hearing, including Joey Gibson, founder of the pro-Trump group Patriot Prayer, questioned the resolution's potential impact on free speech.

"This last testimony does not reflect anything in the resolution," said Wheeler following Gibson's comments.

Eudaly went further. "I want to thank everyone, or almost everyone, who showed up to testify today," she said.

It seemed to me that the resolution was left deliberately vague, a sort of all-purpose "not our kind" designation to be applied to whoever and whatever might be deemed undesirable into the future. I wondered at the time whether the commission had thought this through, and whether Wheeler had considered how it might affect him should Portland's activist class no longer consider him their guy.

*  *  *

By the time Wheeler appointed his fourth police chief last summer, at the height of the city's unrest, he was trapped in a vise of his own devising. Having tried, and failed, during his first term to satisfy Portland's progressive elements, he wound up the target of multifarious ire—from his own City Council, one member of which openly called for him to step down as police commissioner (Portland's system of government has the mayor also fulfilling that role), and from the public more broadly. In July 2020, as he stood in front of Justice Center calling for calm, nearly 1,000 people chanted, "FUCK TED WHEEL-ER!" This was shortly before he was tear-gassed, shouted down, surrounded, and very nearly attacked.

The people doing the attacking were not the youngsters lighting fires next door at the federal courthouse. They were middle-aged residents who had reached a state of perturbation where physically assaulting an elected official seemed proportionate with what they were going through: the occupation of their city by federal forces and the murder of people of color in cities across the country. That the second item was not happening in Portland mattered not at all.

"The Portland police are murdering all our black friends in the streets!" a young woman shouted at me that night, by way of explaining why she was lobbing flaming trash at the courthouse.

(She was wrong about that. By the end of 2020, there would be two police killings or deaths in custody, both white men. In 2019, there were six deaths, one of whom was an African-American man.)

If Portland activists made their bones by playing the aggressed, by summer 2020 they had become fully the aggressors. They had reasons that could be seen as unassailable (who but a monster would not want to avenge the death of George Floyd?) but which often were flimsy (who exactly was Andy Ricker hurting with his crispy Thai prawns?).

The city had not been No. 1 in anything since the Trail Blazers won the NBA championship in 1977, and here it was now on TV every night. There was frisson in that; there was relief—from the COVID lockdowns, from the bars and schools being closed, from the fact that what jobs there still were now seemed to be in jeopardy. With not much squinting, Portland activists and those who supported them saw selflessness in trashing the courthouse; in setting fire to Justice Center and trapping employees in the basement; in erecting a guillotine on the roof of the police union; in squeezing little piggy toys in the faces of officers and yelling, "KILL YOURSELF!"; in dancing around a street fire set in front of the mayor's condo and demanding that "Teargas Ted" resign. Not wanting to inconvenience his neighbors, Wheeler moved out.

"I've told people this for five years. At this point, we're really bottoming out. This has become a city run by children," says Jessie Burke, an entrepreneur who has built several successful businesses in Portland. "I've been a fan of Ted Wheeler's because he's an analytical guy. He's smart. But running a city, or running a company, is like raising children. They don't have all the information, and someone has to make the decision."

Not having all the information relieves people from making informed decisions. There was, for example, the neighbor who disagreed with police having their own union and insisted they join the city employees union, which doesn't exist. ("People make up how things work," says Burke.) Another neighbor, upon learning that activists had barricaded some police inside their station and then set the building on fire, told Burke, "It wasn't murderous; everyone knows that there are multiple routes of egress."

"I asked her, 'Then why were they barricaded at all, then?'" Burke recalled. "She was like, 'Fuck the police.' I don't know if cognitive dissonance is the right word or what."

Burke and I were speaking in front of a bakery she'd started in Portland's Kenton neighborhood. To help offset the financial ruination of COVID, local businesses had a few weeks earlier created a walking plaza, complete with outdoor seating and street art. Within the week, the plaza was ransacked and set ablaze by activists, on the run from police whose nearby union hall they'd just set on fire for the umpteenth time.

"As people of color, this is not our way of getting the message across, by tearing up other people's stuff," says Terrance Moses, head of the Kenton Business Association. "The fact of the matter is that these are young white kids destroying people's property to try and get a message across that they think is what black people want to hear."

Moses, who grew up in Kenton and who, with his adult son, physically stood in front of businesses in the neighborhood when the ransacking continued a second night, asked to meet with the activists. "'Put down your violence, come join us, and let's really get the message across,'" he says he told them. "Nobody has asked to sit down with me. All they do is just continue to argue. Some say, 'You don't get nothing the peaceful way. We've been trying the peaceful way for 30 years.'"

"I can completely see where the neighbors are upset in Kenton," one activist said following the plaza fire. "The [business owners] are saying, 'We tried to make this great area for everybody with these picnic tables. We spent time with our own materials building this, and then you burned it to make a statement to the police. And you're hurting one of the traditionally black neighborhoods in Portland, too.' So it's a little counterproductive. But there's also that stance of, well, we're here. And if we don't make this noise and respond with the violence we're being presented with from the police, then no change is going to come."

Erin Smith, a right-wing activist who'd embedded with antifa in Portland to see what all the fuss was about, and who was there when the union hall was set ablaze, put it another way: "I'm not going to lie. It's fun."

*  *  *

So the fun continued, and why not? Who was going to pay attention to you if you stopped? The destruction eventually attracted the attention of the president himself. Predictably, the federal troops Trump sent to the city in July did not cover themselves in glory. There was the poor roll-out, the tit-for-tat between state and federal officials, the people in full-on camo pulling people dressed in black into unmarked cars. And there was, of course, the tear gas.

I don't know whether July 22, 2020, was the night federal forces—known locally also as "Trump's goons" and "the Gestapo"— shot the most military-grade CS gas at protesters launching objects at the Mark O. Hatfield Federal Courthouse in Portland, Oregon. Tear gas is a hard thing to quantify, and it didn't help that protesters were shooting off fireworks as well as setting fires, including tipping a barbecue grill over the temporary security fencing around the courthouse, then undergoing its 57th night of frontal assaults. But let's say there was a lot of gas, each volley driving protesters back from the courthouse and into the park across the street, past the homeless people and the stoners and the boys revving gas-dispersing leaf-blowers and the girls with "medic" spelled somewhere on their clothing and, on this night, a guy on his knees vomiting onto the asphalt. Tear gas can do this; it can also, despite your intention to stay until the end of the confrontation, have your body walking itself back to the car, your cloth mask, after five rounds of gas, useful now mostly as a repository for tears and snot and also as evidence that the young people you've seen swaddled in enough headgear to look as though they're about to go scuba diving in fact know something you do not.

If what they knew would turn out to be puddle-deep—or that's what I deduced, seeing them bust the same moves night after night after night—city leaders still seemed torn. They would occasionally complain about the mayhem, while enacting policies that let it continue. According to Portland's KOIN-TV, of the more than 1,000 protest-related arrests from May through November, charges were dropped more than 90 percent of the time. This was at the behest of Multnomah County District Attorney Mike Schmidt, who upon assuming office in August announced he would decline to prosecute the "breaking windows of businesses, lighting things on fire, stealing from those stores in the protest environment."

This, and the City Council voting to cut $15 million from the Portland Police Bureau's budget (activists had asked for a $50 million cut) and passing a resolution whereby Portland police were forbidden to communicate with or provide support to federal forces, took power away from law enforcement and de facto put it in the hands of the protesters. This was considered a good thing, not only by those Portlanders who were vocal supporters, but by local and national media, who somehow found it impossible to understand that, while the majority of protesters were peaceful, there was a small band that wreaked havoc. This was self-evident, night after night after night, and yet people would not see it, or if they did, were afraid to admit it, as if doing so would discount the entire BLM movement, would play, maybe, into Trump's hands.

Still, every encounter between protesters and police that I witnessed followed the same pattern: black bloc and a few Black Lives Matter supporters (fewer as the months wore on) would appear at a previously decided location. They would either attack the location or march toward the night's target. Pilot vehicles would let marchers know where to go and whether the cops were coming. The target would be bombarded with trash, set on fire, broken into. Activists would drum and sloganeer; as summer turned to fall, the chants were almost exclusively some version of "Fuck the police." After one to three hours, the police would appear and the activists would form a "shield line," complete with homemade shields. This was done for the cameras: Portland's 2020 protests, or what they devolved into, were nothing if not a revolution by cellphone, the choicest clips being those that showed the activists looking heroic and besieged. If you widened the lens to capture, say, a guy battering a building with a fire extinguisher or a girl spitting in a cop's face, you would be accused of being "a fash"; would be shadowed in the crowd or told point-blank you were going to get your ass kicked; would have your phone or camera stolen because "YOU'RE NOT ALLOWED TO FILM!" and "PHOTOGRAPHY EQUALS DEATH!"; and would later find photos of yourself posted to social media, sometimes by journalists who, mistaking activism for journalism, whistled out anyone deemed not on-message.

All of these things happened to me. The activists, with ample support, sang in one voice in Portland: They were the ones who were going to tell the story.

And they did tell it, and it wasn't hard. Not with major news outlets pushing the "mostly peaceful" protest narrative and Democratic Gov. Kate Brown blaming the first four months of nightly destruction on right-wing extremists. Such groups rarely rolled through town, but when they did, it was with a lot of boo-yah! and flags flying and dudes in pickup trucks ballyhooing their loyalty to Trump and open-carrying semi-automatic weapons.

Characters out of Portlandia these people were not. Whether activists and average citizens were authentically scared of them I cannot say. I can say that they were enlivened by them. I can say that each group had need of the other if the fight were to continue. And so it made sense, when Patriot Prayer member Aaron Danielson was killed in August by self-proclaimed antifa supporter Michael Reinoehl (who was himself shot and killed by law enforcement five days later), that Brown would in essence blame Danielson for his own death. "I will not allow Patriot Prayer and armed white supremacists to bring more bloodshed to our streets," the governor proclaimed.

A.G. Schmidt seemed spooked by the murder, and Wheeler said that "the tragedy last night cannot be repeated." Nonetheless, the mayor reserved the bulk of his opprobrium for Trump. "Do you seriously wonder, Mr. President, why this is the first time in decades America has seen this level of political violence?" he said. "What America needs is for you to be stopped."

And if Trump were stopped in November, would it have a soporific effect on the activists? With a Democrat as president, would the activists calm down and, like good children, figuratively go to sleep? I told the people claiming as much that they were nuts. That Portland's activists lived in a post-political world. That they wanted what they wanted, and what they wanted was to keep fighting, which necessitated an ever-fresh crop of enemies that would, at least in theory, provide their nightly spurt of relief.

*  *  *

"WHOEVER THEY VOTE FOR, WE ARE UNGOVERNABLE," read one of the flyers. It was advertising an event taking place a day after the presidential election, organized in part by a group called the PNW Youth Liberation Front.

Following form, several hundred people met in a public park and marched. I marched with them. I watched them do what they always did: smash windows, set fires, yell "FUCK THE POLICE." There were very few chants of "George Floyd" or "Breonna Taylor." These deaths, at the hands of the police, had provided fuel for a long time—had provided legitimacy. But that time had passed, and the police were right here, as were the National Guard, which Brown had deployed in anticipation of election-related violence.

There was plenty of it that night, albeit of the same kind Portland had been experiencing for the last six months. Is it possible for plate glass windows crashing at your feet, for people burning American flags in the street, to be boring? It is. There were no points for ingenuity that night, with one exception: It was the first time I'd seen people on the left open-carry rifles.

"We've started carrying in Portland, and overall, we've gotten a great reception," one young man told me.

Maybe the rifles pulled officials up short. Maybe it was a desire to pretty the state's image under a Biden administration. Whatever the reason, Brown suddenly became ecumenical in her warnings. "Political violence will not be tolerated," she declared. "Not from the left, not from the right, and not from the center."

Wheeler, who'd squeaked past openly pro-antifa challenger Sarah Iannarone to win reelection, issued an anodyne press release, thanking voters for giving him a second chance and stating that Portland "is not a perfect place, and we have many historical inequities to repair, but this is a very special place."

There were other signs people had had enough of the violence. Commissioner Eudaly, a favorite of the activists, was unseated by someone backed by the police union. And when I asked a local news editor, whose paper had pretty much been in the bag for the protests, if he had a contact at the PNW Youth Liberation Front, he wrote back, "If I had the names of the little criminals who run PNWYLF, I would have published them! [If they] were all torn apart by bears, as in the book of II Kings, I would consider that the work of the Lord."

*  *  *

The situation in Portland did not improve after the election. Activists kept marching nightly. They swarmed the house of a newly elected city commissioner because he'd voted against the latest measure to defund the police. They vandalized 27 businesses along a six-block strip in Northeast Portland. They established an "autonomous zone" called Red House, ostensibly in support of a black and Native American family facing eviction. And on New Year's Eve, they used Molotov cocktails and other high-powered incendiary devices to cause tens of thousands of dollars in damage in downtown.

"It's hard for most of us to even comprehend what goes on in the heads of people who think it's OK or a good idea to go on a violent rampage through the city on New Year's Eve and during a pandemic," Wheeler said the next day. "It's the height of selfishness….There are some people who just want to watch the world burn."

There is something mesmerizing in watching things burn, and just like any fire, it needs to be fed.

Wheeler brokered a supposed peace with the occupiers at Red House. But on January 6, the Portland Tribune reported that the zone was covered in trash and human filth; that the area, a short walk from where I'd lived until recently, had become unlivable. "There are men walking around with guns, pistols, long arms, shotguns, rifles (who approach you) if you get close to their camp," someone who lived within the zone told the paper. "This is definitely not our neighborhood anymore."

A day earlier, the Oregonian had reported that Wheeler was in talks to bring a seasoned power broker into his administration, "albeit one with baggage," the piece read, including "a sexual relationship with [a] teen he met on the job."

"I heard about this yesterday but thought it was a joke until you sent me the link," said T.B., the former state official, when I asked whether he knew previous mayor Sam Adams might be making his way back into City Hall. I thought Wheeler's choice of deus ex machina bizarre, but I could also imagine him thinking he needed someone as mercenary as Adams—a man who, during a two-hour conversation shortly after he'd been publicly accused of sexual harassment in 2019, lied to me about scandals he'd already copped to.

"I'm divesting from Portland," Jessie Burke told me. She'd recently bought a home in Key West. Because of the new renters' rights law, she'd just had to pay $4,500 to renters to vacate one of her properties; none of it made any sense. "My husband told me the other day, 'I feel like we have to save the city, and I'm not exactly sure how.' The loudest voices are not the smartest voices, and they don't know how much of anything works, and they don't understand how to move the needle."

I don't know how, either. I am almost sure it cannot be moved by government officials—not when their sympathies and policies have, in effect, allowed a tiny group of people to dominate the narrative for the better part of a year; have let them take the city, block by block; have seen them befoul what, less than two decades ago, was a legitimately beautiful place so seemingly full of promise that young people flocked there from across the country to fulfill their dreams. I do not believe they wanted to end up staring into a nihilistic fire, and if I could relay to activists a message it would be to stop devoting their munificent energy toward destruction, and to learn to be builders of the dream.

NEXT: Brickbat: Left Holding the Bag

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  2. Thank you Nancy, and the answer is they can’t return Portland to what it was unless they are willing to send the rioters to prison. Some people will take advantage of being able to break a window without consequence, and really the only way to do them once they start, is to get enough of them off the street that they can’t form a mob to goad each other on.

    1. Why do people say return Portland to what it was? This is the Portland they all want. Progressive politics cause this every time it’s implemented.

        1. People who can’t compete fairly always want to return to the good old days when they weren’t expected to.

          1. Right; Ya know, like the ‘good old-old days’ when PLANStation owners planned how to STEAL/own other people’s labor/earnings and supply them just enough to keep them alive.. While tyrannically beating them because the “weather changes”.

            Oh Wait; isn’t that the Democrats Political End-Goal today?

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    2. Shooting them in the face would, at least appear to be on the table as well.

      But the pants shitting on the left and here (BIRM) would be epic.

      1. Jeff would be fine with shooting anyone who trespasses in the face. Oh wait, these aren’t MAGA people, never mind.

      2. “Shooting them in the face would, at least appear to be on the table as well.”

        Just because it has a long history of not working very well is no reason to take it off the table…

    3. Fun fact about the author! She was ostracized from Portland in 2019 for downplaying sexual assault victims in the MeToo movement, with the “MeNeither” movement, in effect wreaking the reputation of her husbands coffee business and running them both out of town.

      https://www.google.com/amp/s/www.oregonlive.com/news/2019/01/part-owner-of-portland-coffee-company-questions-accounts-of-sexual-assault-survivors-on-youtube.html%3FoutputType%3Damp

      1. Thanks for spamming this comment a half dozen times (not).
        And the fact that she was “ostracized from Portland” and her husband’s business ruined for expressing an opinion is absolutely nothing for Portland to be proud of.

      2. LILANDER … you might want to stop rewriting history…Your fun fact is false – and your dozens of spam are pathetic.
        Here is the real story behind your spurious “… ostracized from Portland in 2019 for downplaying sexual assault victims in the MeToo movement…”
        Right here, read about perfect Cancel Culture madness:
        https://quillette.com/2019/02/18/the-internet-locusts-descend-on-ristretto-roasters/

  3. Also, wonderful background at the beginning of this story on how people ended up not knowing what they were going to do with their lives.

    1. a spiritual void and bad parenting

      1. An intelligence void; get off your ass and do something.

  4. Welcome to Venezuela North.

    CB

    1. Easy way to earn every month an extra amount of $15,000 just by doing very simple and easy work online. Last month i have received $17593 from this work… SeeMore here

    2. You mean brewpubs and bike paths is not the way to libertopia?

      1. This has nothing to do with brewpubs and bike paths.

        It’s incompetent (at best) government coupled with the whiny demands of progressives to remove all personal responsibility.

        1. “This has nothing to do with brewpubs and bike paths.”

          You are correct.

          “New residents built the city they wanted to live in: farm-to-table restaurants and 40 million brewpubs and too many bike paths and aggressively progressive politics.

          But it is also more than that. It is wishful thinking and a dearth of plain old common sense.

          But there was an additional agitation in Portland, in that the plans of those who’d come to try their hand at baking and winemaking and woodworking and beekeeping had become unreachable. In 2005, you could (and my husband did) open a coffee shop where the rent was $425 a month. The rent was nearly 10 times that much in the last café he opened in 2016. Service industry gigs, where young people traditionally found employment, had become scarcer. The legalization of cannabis in 2015 seemed to offer unlimited potential growth, but the market almost at once became oversaturated, resulting in cheap weed but few who could make a living off it.

          Seeing “unlimited potential for growth” in the sale of a weed that literally anyone can grow just about anywhere being exemplary of the sort of naivete cum ignorance that has made Portland Portlandia.

          And she’s a fucking critic of it all.

          1. “Seeing “unlimited potential for growth” in the sale of a weed that literally anyone can grow just about anywhere being exemplary of the sort of naivete cum ignorance”

            Growing legally turns out to be harder than a lot of people thought, and the ones growing illegally can still find a ready market. AND they have to compete with the meth cooks.

            1. “Growing legally turns out to be harder than a lot of people thought”

              Which has nothing to do with the growing an everything to do with the laws.

              See: Aggressively progressive politics

              1. Nothing says libertopia quite like “growing illegally.”

                Statist much?

          2. Growing a patch of hemp is easy. Growing high quality marijuana is a lot of work. But still something pretty much anyone can do with fairly minimal investment.
            Everything is a weed if you don’t want it there.

            1. And if you are not interested in an investment – either in your growing operation or the cost of buying “high quality” weed you simply grow whatever you can and smoke more if necessary.

              It’s still light years easier than making your own wine, or – even harder – smokable tobacco.

          3. Anyone can make booze too. You wouldn’t want to drink most of it though. Weed is the same way. If you want anything worth a shit, it had better be grown by someone who knows what they’re doing.

            1. Nonsense. The only people who say that are the people who sell weed. Five minutes on the interwebs will get you enough information. Combine that with some decent quality seeds and a bag of potting soil and you will get something just fine.

              It is cheaper and easier than home brewing beer.

              1. It really isn’t. But a lot of people tell themselves that. I’m spoiled though. WA has about the best in the world. So anything grown the way you describe will be glaringly mediocre in comparison.

                Also, getting good seeds is quite a lottery. Even from a reliable seller.

          4. That magic money that was going to come from legal weed completely overlooked the fact that 75% (at least) of the cost of pot was created by the illegality of it. Keeping the price stable by replacing that cost with taxes was naive from the git go.

            1. That was true in the old days. Currently, good black market weed appears to sell at prices similar to the legal market. It tends to be better without al the government regulations on growing too.

    3. Venezuela, at least, has sun.

  5. This has become a city run by children

    It’s not just the city, it’s the whole fucking country. These are not serious people, they are pig-ignorant children proud of their ignorance, as if this somehow makes them pure and innocent and acting only from the best of intentions rather than simply dangerously incompetent fools. You goddamn well better wise up, and wise up quick – these people are going to get you killed if you don’t stop them.

    1. Those “pig-ignorant” people you speak of are more educated, accredited, and cultured than any GOP rube who thinks Jewish space lasers start forest fires and the COVID vaccine is a conspiracy to sterilize white people.

      1. When are people going to stop conflating “educated” with knowledgeable or intelligent? They are NOT synonymous.

        1. Have you considered calibrating your sarcasm meter?

          1. Sometimes the good Rabbi is a little too on point, and Poe’s Law get’s a beatdown. Because was that honestly anything different from what chemleft would write?

            1. Yeah, attention to authorship is important.

        2. oh cultural marxists…they just seem to multiply the more prosperous parents become don’t they? The solution to this insanity is to let county’s leave their state for another…most of Oregon can join Idaho..Portland can become…well something out of Atlas Shrugged…it does read like that doesn’t it?

      2. The shithole they created in Portland would say otherwise

        Grow up

        1. flagged myself for missing the joke

          1. +1, self-policing. But now -1, defunded.

      3. What is the point of this comment? Really? You are defending horrendously ignorant people by claiming the alternative to them is idiot GOPers?

        This “logic” that you have resorted too is so tremendously intellectually dishonest and lazy and is unfortunately that go-to for so many anymore. It is arguing for the lowest common denominator.

        1. I bet you are fun at parties.

          1. Um, what?

      4. more educated

        Indoctrinated, not educated. There are countless idiots with credentials leaking out of their bungholes who demonstrate just how worthless it is to get your ticket punched at an American university today.

        -jcr

      5. Perhaps explain the defense of Antifa, the anonymous people that dumped paint on a 75-year-old trying to douse a fire and then wrapped her with yellow caution tape and surrounded her and yelled at her to die. And half of Portland supports them (see the close mayoral race where the pro-Antifa candidate barely lost to the extremely right-wing Ted Wheeler. I just toured downtown today to see if there’s hope. It’s great if you like the intelligently crafted patina of plywood with a few “cops drink piss” tags. Really cultured folks! And the Red House debacle there? The media (see Willamette Weekly) sent a reporter who described a party-like scene. To WW’s credit, they published a letter from a resident, terrified because of the gasoline-soaked tires placed against his house. Residents terrified to say anything. This is not a blow against the empire. If anything, destroying small businesses is better for Walmart and Amazon. Sometimes I think Antifa are just the shock troops that will enable our Big Friendly Government to “save us” from them. And the black people who begged them to stop? Ignored in the 200 + days of rioting and destruction. Minimized by the media because they are “anti-police”. THAT is racism easy to see right there on the street.

      6. That’s true. These people are more educated, accredited, and cultured than the imaginary characters you describe. Probably because It’s easier to get an accreditation when you exist.

        While there are undoubtedly idiots, and even some idiots who vaguely resemble your description (if you kind of squint and only look at their Facebook), their numbers are so inconsequential I have yet to ever meet one. Meanwhile, I know two people who are in antifa, personally. Antifa and antifa-adjacent types are so ubiquitous they can spend months committing violence and murder across the country and face almost no consequences. Their numbers allow them to enjoy a privileged status in society as journalists and politicians intentionally look the other way.

        You know this, however, which is why you had to use a vague trope as your best counter example to the actual mass violence committed by actual people.

      7. …and yet you use false equivocation to discredit your intellectual “inferiors.”

    2. I have heard the argument about the ‘mostly peaceful demonstrators’ looking on while windows are broken and fires started. Is this the same as mostly peaceful people looking on as someone is raped?
      What sort of person stands next to someone destroying and looting and says nothing? If you know that it will happen again tomorrow evening, why do you come back and add support?

      1. C’mon man. Antifa and property rights are just ideas.

      2. A progressive

      3. There is a similar psychology at play in that they react according to how the group reacts. If everyone else is looking the other way then you probably should too. Additionally, there’s an element of moral intoxication clouding people’s judgement. Their participation in the protests makes them good people, better people than those who are not participating. They’re ending racism, the other’s are causing racism etc. from here it becomes very easy to simply not see the violence, or to perceive those who acknowledge the violence as threatening their conception of what makes them good. I bet many even fall back on the old

        “we’re good so those who question us are bad. Republicans disagree. Therefor the violence is just right wing propaganda”

    3. I don’t know how educated they may or may not be, but they are spoiled entitled and lost, and I blame their parents as much as I blame them.

    4. You nailed it. These people are dangerous fools who don’t understand that civilization is based on people working and exchanging with each other – offering their fellow humans something USEFUL. There is no “free lunch,” you get no points for good intentions or having the “correct” sentiments.

      These children need to be told to shut up and get to work. They need to DO SOMETHING USEFUL.

      And we as members of civilized society need to defend the basic natural rights of life, liberty and property. If some stupid communist kid throws a brick through your window, you should shoot and kill that kid. Send them to the morgue. If another one comes and does the same thing, kill them, too. If they set fire to your street, kill them all, and keep killing them until they stop destroying property.

      At some point, they’ll get the message, and they’ll get back to work producing some good or service that is actually USEFUL to their fellow man; and they’ll be judged not on their race, skin color, religion, gender or sexual orientation, but on whether or not they improve the lives of their fellow humans. Even if they don’t, as long as they can move through life without violating anybody else’s rights to life, liberty and property, then they should be left alone.

      And then we can welcome them back into civilization.

      But as long as they are nothing but malevolent destroyers and violators, then they should die bloody.

      This is a war for the survival of civilization itself.

    5. In addition to 5/8 of their letters, innocent and ignorant have a great deal of overlap.

  6. Proving the inevitable truth of More’s Utopia.

  7. Anti-White thugs attack White people that peacefully protest against the genocidal policy of mass third-world immigration and FORCED assimilation for EVERY White country and ONLY White countries. If anti-White ideas are so good, why do they require street violence to make sure nobody will object? It’s obvious that Antifa really only wants White Genocide.

    1. Hey hey! How to!
      White supremacy has got to go!
      We won’t forget what you people did.
      Jewish pride, world wide!

      1. To be honest, white liberals who have gone woke actually agree with Larkenson that minorities aren’t capable of western civilization.

        That’s why western civilization is systemic racism.

        I’d rather them get out of our countries if they truly believe that. If you believe you are incapable of achievement in a western country because the math, science, literature, morality, and ethics that built it are unachievable by colored people, and therefore racist, then you should leave.

        1. ^Well said; It’s the ideology not the skin-color.

          Democrats not only have a history of being the party of racism but even today remain faithful to their racist foundlings.

          The king of the Democratic Party – Andrew Jackson.

          Jackson’s supporters founded the Democratic Party.
          In 1830, Jackson signed the Indian Removal Act
          Jackson opposed the abolitionist movement
          Abolitionism in the United States was a movement which sought to end slavery in the United States

          It attacked the Bank as an agent of inequality that supported only the wealthy. The veto was considered “one of the strongest and most controversial” presidential statements and “a brilliant political manifesto.”

          The National Republican Party immediately made Jackson’s veto of the Bank a political issue. Jackson’s political opponents castigated the veto as “the very slang of the leveler and demagogue,” claiming Jackson was using class warfare to gain support from the common man.

          70-Years later the 1913 Federal Reserve Act was passed by Democrat Woodrow Wilson.

          Same story; different generation.

          1. “Democrats not only have a history of being the party of racism but even today remain faithful to their racist foundlings.”

            How does this theory explain Nixon’s “Southern Strategy” and its success?

            1. How does this theory explain Nixon’s “Southern Strategy”?
              Your right; I forgot to mention the PROJECTION game-plan of the left.
              Creating delusions in DNC fantasy-land that blame one’s own mentality on everyone else.
              https://thehill.com/opinion/campaign/402754-the-myth-of-nixons-southern-strategy

            2. Nothing pegs the idiocy meter better than…
              “Black Lives Matter …. White People are ALL racist…”
              PROJECTION 101.

            3. Well, The Democrats don’t have a monopoly on using racism for political ends. Just the deepest history of doing so.

            4. “…How does this theory explain Nixon’s “Southern Strategy” and its success?…”

              *Now* I remember you as a fucking lefty ignoramus who shows up from time to time to prove how stupid lefty shits can be!
              Fuck off and die.

            5. How does Nixon’s “Southern Strategy” jibe with Lyndon Johnson’s assessment of his “War on Poverty” (1964): “We’ll have those ni**ers voting Democrat for 100 years.”

              Are you contending Nixon was more racist that *that*??

      2. “how to”?

    2. Fuck off, chemjeff. Your astroturfing isn’t going to work here.

      1. Failure never stops him.

  8. The thing I always wonder about is who is funding all of this?

    It’s one thing to be young and broke. Most of us have been there. But to destroy the thing that sustains you – I just don’t understand.

    1. The international cabal of right wing, white Christians who want to make Portland’s leftist utopia look like a dung heap.

      1. Sounds awesome. How do I get an invite?

        1. If you were wanted, you would already have one.

          1. Well, gosh darn it all.

        2. Hillary and chemjeff call it the Vast Right Wing Conspiracy, and it apparently meets at the CityCenterDC food court across from the Cinnabon.
          Bring your own white hood, MAGA hat and QAnon t-shirt.

    2. You aren’t allowed to mention him.

      1. Forwards or backwards? They’d be sore about it once they rose up?

    3. The thing I always wonder about is who is funding all of this?

      We are. Almost all these people have government jobs, usually in the education system. But these people are mediocrities so they generally have tangential jobs like school social worker or other administrator.

    4. Their parents support them. These aren’t people with jobs and apartments. These are people selling drugs and sex and living in their parent’s basement.

      1. Marshal and Brandy are both correct. Also add in student grants and loans, along with the social services net of government, religious groups, and he who must not be named.

      2. Selling to whom? Somebody’s still supplying the money. Unless it’s like the two Chinese getting rich by selling each other rocks.

      3. The two women who physically attacked the gay left wing state rep in Wisconsin were later identified. One worked in some sort of herbal remedy shop. The other was a social worker for a local school system.

        The self-proclaimed spokesperson for antifa is a schoolteacher in Berkeley, middle school if I remember correctly.

    5. It’s one thing to be young and broke. Most of us have been there. But to destroy the thing that sustains you – I just don’t understand.

      It’s a rather direct consequence of living wages; either you’re valued at your value and working to survive, or you aren’t.

  9. This article covers a lot of ground. But I do wish it gave airtime to those in the media who continue to air the narrative that “everything’s fine…nothing to see here”. Because frankly, I just don’t understand it. So I’d like to see it challenged more directly. I want to see someone defend it in the presence of someone like Nancy whose “lived experience” totally annihilates that POV.

    1. This was done for the cameras: Portland’s 2020 protests, or what they devolved into, were nothing if not a revolution by cellphone, the choicest clips being those that showed the activists looking heroic and besieged. If you widened the lens to capture, say, a guy battering a building with a fire extinguisher or a girl spitting in a cop’s face, you would be accused of being “a fash”; would be shadowed in the crowd or told point-blank you were going to get your ass kicked; would have your phone or camera stolen because “YOU’RE NOT ALLOWED TO FILM!” and “PHOTOGRAPHY EQUALS DEATH!”; and would later find photos of yourself posted to social media, sometimes by journalists who, mistaking activism for journalism, whistled out anyone deemed not on-message.

      You must have missed the part where the reporting on these mostly peaceful protests was about as meaningful as the reporting put out by North Korean state television, assuming North Korea even has television.

      1. My point is that I’d prefer to see these “reporters” directly confronted by others in their industry like Nancy. Because we need to continuously put them on the defensive and have them be on the record defending their adherence to “moral clarity”.

        Confronting the narrative based media directly is one necessary antidote to their falsehoods. The other…an alternative media…still doesn’t have a clear pathway in light of its constant attack by the platform monopolists.

        1. Confronting the narrative based media directly is one necessary antidote to their falsehoods.

          The “narrative based media” is about 99.9% of media these days. Nobody gets into journalism to do journalism, they’re all activists and advocates and “change agents” giving you their opinion on the news. Have you seen the curriculum at the J-schools lately? It’s just as bad as the curriculum in the Education Departments.

          1. Yep. ‘Journalist’ is a skin suit worn by people who know that ‘activist’ does not pay as well (if at all.)

            The general public sees no value in actual journalism, as evidenced by their unwillingness to directly pay for it, and largely because journalists long ago destroyed any perception of value.

            Which was not by accident.

            Now all we get is paid shills.

            Again, not by accident.

            1. That’s why “journalists” attack GG so hard for “turning” on them. People ARE willing to pay to read what he writes AND IT REALLY PISSES THEM OFF.

              1. Been reading the Gleens too long to lend him that much credence. He, like Andrew Sullivan of late, may merely be doing what they have always strove to do – find a large enough audience and sell them what they want to hear.

                That he zigs when the MSM zags is pretty much done for the same reason that people like Ronnie James Dio got into Metal in the first place – having tried the more traditional route to limited success they found a niche market instead.

                (Does not make him wrong, but it also does not make him reliable.)

          2. Hell, her reporting directly from Portland didn’t even seem to effect the “journalist” at this very publication that does the roundup every morning, and it’s publishing her stories. What chance does she have with the rest of them?

  10. “But muh inch erection!”

  11. Funny, I would say the dream of Portland was completely and totally fulfilled.
    It’s just you think the dream was freedom when the dream was socialism.

    1. The dream is otherwise known as Peter Pan Syndrome. The dream is to remain forever a child with Mommy and Daddy taking care of you from behind the scenes so that you never have to concern yourself with the question of where stuff comes from. These people are mental 5-year olds who can’t understand why Mommy says she can’t afford to buy you a pony when you can plainly see she still has checks in her checkbook.

      1. This is indeed much of it. The other part are all the adults that are content to let these man-children remain children. Much blame rests with their parents.

        I had one schoolmate like this. Parents tossed him out when he was seventeen. Eventually turned his life around twenty years later. Twenty years wasted. An ex-girlfriend was like this too. Raised by her welfare office father, he never really got out of it. Fifty five years old, she went on a six month bender, literal bender where her husband could not get her out of her room for six fucking months, because Trump won in 2016.

        One does not need to be a conservative diehard with ones kids. Let them roam and make mistakes. But neither should one be one of these coddling parents unwilling for any consequence to come to their kids. Laissez faire is still best. Let them fall and feel it in their tuckus.

        1. “The other part are all the adults that are content to let these man-children remain children. ”

          Yes, useful idiots being useful.

        2. man-children

          Let’s not get ahead of ourselves here.

        3. “It’s for the children” cries certainly played it’s part too.

      2. “The dream is otherwise known as Peter Pan Syndrome.”

        which explains why Intel designs new microprocessors in the western suburbs. They’re always chasing the youthful.

      3. Bingo. They’re toddlers raging at the world for not complying with their irrational demands.

        -jcr

      4. “The dream is otherwise known as Peter Pan Syndrome. The dream is to remain forever a child with Mommy and Daddy taking care of you from behind the scenes so that you never have to concern yourself with the question of where stuff comes from.”

        See Tony’s post from several days ago regarding the injustice of a free economy ‘forcing’ people to ‘sell their work’ for market-determined wages!
        I’m guessing that steaming pile of lefty shit assumes the unicorns come by every now and then depositing Jacksons in lumps.

      5. um….checkbook?

  12. Whenever observers attempt to draw a profile of Portland, they inevitably ask: “What went wrong?”

    For my part, I am always reminded of Demons by Dostoyevsky, a novel about an entire generation of otherwise promising Russians in the late eighteenth century who are swallowed whole by their nihilism and lofty, over-intellectualized ideals. Out of sheer mind-numbing boredom, and a desire to demonstrate that they, above all others, are the intellectual heirs to the new European enlightenment, they use their intellects to transform the pursuit of freedom into the pursuit of raw and aimless chaos.

    “You cannot imagine what sorrow and anger seize one’s whole soul when a great idea, which one has long and piously revered, is picked up by some bunglers and dragged into the street, to more fools like themselves, and one suddenly meets it in the flea market, unrecognizable, dirty, askew, absurdly presented, without proportion, without harmony, a toy for stupid children.

    ― Fyodor Dostoevsky, Demons

    Once chaos is rationalized, the inertia of boredom will turn people out into the streets over nothing. People, quite literally, lose their minds. People becomes destructive, intolerant, divisive, and angry. People begin to tear down the world around them because their nihilism has finally brought them to the precipice — at which point there is nothing left to destroy but themselves.

    Rather than freeing them from the constraints of society and, in this way, acting as a catalyst for creation, nihilism practiced by children, who only superficially understand the concept, eviscerates everything else that makes life in a civilized society possible. Ethics, morality, intellectual consistency, critical thinking, freedom of conscience, non-violence, etc., have all been bargained away for a taste of the illusion of freedom. There is no longer any concern with creating something new, but only tearing down what remains.

    In my view, Portland is the culmination of that illusion and the entire country is watching it shatter.

    1. “…they use their intellects to transform the pursuit of freedom into the pursuit of raw and aimless chaos.”

      An apt description, yes, thank you, for leftists gone berserk.

      Please note that it is ALSO an apt description, if not directly for the trumpanzees gone apeshit, in a quest to replace democracy with mobocracy… Applying the term “intellects” to these near-mindless insurrectionists doesn’t seem to fit right… But certainly to many of those who egged them on! Like Josh Hawley!

      https://reason.com/2021/03/06/josh-hawleys-toxic-populism/

    2. I re-read your stuff above, Geiger! Good writing actually! Honest and true, with a historical cultural reference! Wow! I lifted a part of your writing and searched the internet, and was pleasantly surprised to find that it does NOT look like you lifted it from someone else!

      Good job, and I bet there are many of us here who would like to see more like THIS, and less of the name-calling (which I do ‘fess up to sinking down to as well, from time to time).

      1. LOL Nobody cares what you think is good, you’re unimportant and a bad writer. so funny 😀

        1. Wow, what literary talent and rapier wit! Let’s see if I can match or exceed it, with some OTHER brilliantly smart comments that I have created just now!

          Fuck off, spaz!
          You eat shit, you said so yourself!
          You’re a racist Hitler-lover!
          Take your meds!
          That’s so retarded!
          You’re a Marxist!
          Your feet stink and you don’t love Trump!
          Your source is leftist, so it must be false!
          Trump rules and leftists drool!
          You are SOOO icky-poo!
          But Goo-Goo-Gah-Gah!

          Wow, I am now 11 times as smart and original as you are!

          1. What people do NOT and are UNWILLING to understand is how, without medication (FUCK YOU DOCTOR COCKTOR JENNIFER AND YOUR PILLS) I’m one of the smartest and clever people who have ever lived!
            Melvin says that he has outwitted his ex-wife’s LYING lawyers and the judges stupid rules and will not be silenced!
            See: https://churchofsqrls.com/eating_poop_and_my_daughters_cotton_panties for the TRUE story on how I live my life in an unfascist way!!

            1. A four-fer to delete the ‘tard’s posts! Not bad.

    3. The Rabbi hasn’t shown up yet to accuse Dostoyevsky of being a “GOP rube.”

    4. “late eighteenth century”–
      You meant “late 1800s”.
      The “eighteenth century” ran 1701-1800. The first century ran 0001-0100 AD.
      Confusing? Yes. That is why I almost never use “century” that way any more.

      1. Yes, correct. I made a mistake. I meant to say late nineteenth century. Dostoyevsky was not even alive in the eighteenth century.

    5. Well done. You could teach a class on this. Just not on the coasts or in the progressive cities in the Midwest.

  13. Without directly saying so, the progressive agitators are ignorant conspiracy theorists who do not understand how the government actually works and therefore make stuff up (like that there is a city employee union that the police should be under rather than the police union).

    Also, I remember one of the things that was supposedly impressive about Portland in the ’90s and early ’00s was the very restrictive building codes to ostensibly prevent urban sprawl. It is 8ntereting that now the price of housing is through the roof, but there does not seem to be any connection made there.

    1. So, you’re ignorant about how the Urban Growth Boundary works, and therefore assume that other people, are, too? I grew up out near where the boundary was, when it was still farmland. Now the Intel plants are named after the farms they displaced. Hawthorn Farms was followed by Jones Farm was followed by Ronler Acres.

      1. Fuck off lefty shit.

  14. So the Desert Fox packed up her Panzer and pulled out of Portland.

    1. Thank you! I’ve made so many Rommel references for this woman, and finally someone else chimes in.

      1. Time to send in Patton?

        1. Patton Oswald, that is. He speaks their language.

      2. Geez, I’m glad I didn’t try a Kurt Thomas reference.*

        1. *-because he was a pommel man. n/m

  15. “You probably remember there was massive rioting in the Pearl District the day after Donald Trump was elected. Millions of dollars of damage were inflicted,” says journalist Michael Totten. “How many people in the Pearl District voted for Donald Trump? It’s probably not even 1 percent. Who on earth are these people who declare war on a place where nobody voted for Donald Trump?”

    By far the funniest part of the entire thing. Does socialism drive people crazy?

    1. It’s not socialism that has driven Michael Totten crazy, it’s TDS. He can’t understand anything outside of the Orange Man Bad narrative. Why would these people be tearing shit up other than because of Trump?

      1. Michael Totten is confused why they choose to fuck up Portland the city, which is home to no one who voted for Donald Trump. That’s the funny thing. I too have wondered by the protestors do not drive to places that voted for Donald Trump and pick their fights there. Or really anywhere that isn’t Portland. You don’t shit where you eat…

        1. Because it’s not about Trump?

          1. It says right there in the article the rioting was ” the day after Donald Trump was elected”. The fact was it was a very contentious election and a lot of people decided to throw a tantrum.

            1. It’s not about Trump. It was never about Trump. Trump was a throwaway excuse.

              1. … now that you’ve thrown him away.

        2. Because if you try to do it in places not controlled by leftists you stand an excellent chance of being shot or imprisoned?

        3. I too have wondered by the protestors do not drive to places that voted for Donald Trump and pick their fights there.

          Ending up dead probably figures into their decision-making process.

        4. Because once you leave the friendly confines of Portland, Oregon will not put up with that shit. And the “protesters” know it. So they are left with destroying their own city.

        5. “I too have wondered by the protestors do not drive to places that voted for Donald Trump and pick their fights there.”

          Probably because they’d actually be arrested and jailed there.

          1. Traffic to get to Vancouver is godawful.

        6. ” I too have wondered by the protestors do not drive to places that voted for Donald Trump and pick their fights there.”

          The rural counties are very far away from Portland, and not many people live there. You can throw a huge protest there without anyone much noticing or caring. The rightwing protesters who took over the bird sanctuary found that out.

        7. They throw their tantrums where they can get away with it, of course.

          Last summer there were some hilarious videos of the handful of antifa twats who tried pulling their shit in towns where the citizens were armed and not willing to stand around and let their homes and businesses get burned down.

          -jcr

          1. The videos of blm trying to riot on the areas controlled by mexican gangs in Chicago are halarious

            1. They are not Mexican. The Latin Kings originally came from Puerto Rico. And you are right. Do not mess around in their turf.

        8. SQRLSY, call your office!

          1. Orange Man Bad? Orange Mad Ban???
            Orange Man is super good!!! Herp-Derp Trumpanzees picking flowers outside my window and lying to M. Scott Peck in his excellent book https://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/0684848597/reasonmagazinea-20/
            This is GOOD and TRUE, but is a secret to assholes who touch Melvins daughter!!!!

      2. I’m more surprised that Totten is still around and creating content. He had a lot of attention in the mid-2000s and then kind of vanished off the map.

        1. Yes when he was blogging from Lebanon and Iraq it was good reading. I think he had trouble finding gigs. I remember him asking for donations. Sent him something. After all I enjoyed reading his stuff and he should get paid for it.

          1. He was never a click-bait farmer, so naturally the current journalism industry has no use for him.

    2. Because if they traveled to a heavily republican area and rioted, they would be arrested, charged, tried, and convicted of various crimes.
      The rest of the “peaceful onlookers” would be disbursed by force, and those convicted of crimes would be incarcerated for lengthy prison terms.

    3. Because if they rioted in a place where people voted from Trump, they’d have a much harder time.

  16. The uniform conceals their identities, but it can’t hide the sense of entitlement that allows them a cheap laugh at the cop, at the fan.

    Cue the Dead Kennedys…

  17. “Do you believe that property is worth more than human lives?” asks the boy.

    Well that depends whose property it is, doesn’t it?

    1. Try to take my shit and it’s pretty obvious you don’t value your life more than my property, and who am I to argue with your value judgments?

      1. Nobody wants your shit.

        1. His couch is hideous when you see it in good light

        2. This was my “security system” for many years. Used to leave the place unlocked in the faint hope some burglars would look at our stuff and replace it with something a little nicer.

          Never happened, but I also never got robbed.

          Of course, it occurs to me that I KNEW all the dealers for miles around and probably, directly or indirectly, most of the burglars too.

      2. Sic ’em, Jerry! Sic’em! I had to buck on people like that in Survivalist/Prepper Forums when they started saying: “I know whose house to go to when TSHTF!”

    2. Well that depends whose property it is, doesn’t it?

      I think the better tactic is to point out reasonable people oppose both.

      “Do you agree murder is worse than rape?”

      1. Good question.

    3. “Do you believe that property is worth more than human lives?” asks the boy.
      Well that depends whose property it is, doesn’t it?
      ^^THIS! ————– IS THE ISSUE….

      Lefties have learned by political Nazism (National Socialism) that the Power to STEAL = Wealth instead of Add-Value = Wealth.

      It echoes is everything they do, say and get upset about.

      They’ve been brainwashed in believing the bank-robbers and thieves are moral hero’s and that people’s *earnings* is immoral.

      Sadly; The more “bank robbing” politicians (i.e. stimulus) the USA elects the stronger this criminal environment will persist because ‘theft’ becomes the new route to resources. And the deadly ending will be that point where there are no more resources left to STEAL.

      The U.S. Constitution was written to prevent this; Politicians should be elected by their ability to honor what history has taught.

      1. The barbaric conquer and consume mentality.

  18. Remember, these are the people Reason overwhleming chooses to side with. The childish utopia in Portland is just down the block from the childish utopian in the minds of Reason Editors

    Or perhaps they’re just paid to push globo-homo corporate propaganda

    1. Does anyone else see the irony in this comment? What a retard.

  19. I visited Portland the fall of 2019 and it was sad. The Pearl District still had several cool art galleries and small eateries. We checked out the awesome Japanese Gardens. There are many affluent people still in Portland, along with some thriving businesses. What I wonder is how long will it take for the moneyed people to start leaving? If city services continue to deteriorate, if street crime continues to get worse (or, actually, isn’t reduced), then the people who can afford to will move, and businesses, if they cannot attract or keep good employees, will be looking to relocate. I suspect Vancouver, Washington – across the river from Portland, has seen an influx of people moving over to Washington.

    1. Well, Portland soundly re-elected Ted Wheeler as mayor, so that told me everything I needed to know about the residents of Portland. That was the moment that any remaining sympathy I had for people living and working there went to zero.

      1. I’m sure they’re all broken-up over losing your support.

      2. In truly Portland fashion, TED WHEELER WAS THE CORRECT CHOICE.

        His opponent was 100% antifa.

        We have to ask ourselves how we have gotten into this position in the first place.

        1. Simple, the public at large elite Ed the leftist media of the time and brought Joe McCarthy down. Ripple effects from that ended many worthwhile anti communist endeavors. Including the HUAC. Which is a big part of why the sixties played out as it did.

          Marxists are like malignant tumors. They need to be cut out, or poisoned. Either way they have to go, or the host dies.

      3. Electing Ted Wheeler tells you little about Portland. That he was the lesser of evils tells you everything you need to know about Portland.

    2. Vancouver, Washington has been sending people over the river to stir up trouble in Portland for a while, now. Along with people who like to shop in Oregon (with no sales tax). Funny thing about the people in Vancouver, they scuttled the plans to rebuild and redevelop the I-5 crossing of the Columbia River, and they are the primary users of the existing bridges, driving into Portland to work.

  20. As I read your articles about this, I have to stop several times and ask myself if we’re even on the same planet, although apparently we’re in the same city. I seem to remember a call out on Twitter to take care of the picnic table situation asap … But I guess the city is full of picnic tables. There’s literally a group who picks up garbage after protests. But there are people, black people, involved who are very articulate and informed who could give you and your readers a better understanding. Most of those kids I’ve encountered are impressively informed and intelligent (and homeless, not entitled brats). I’m sorry you haven’t encountered them. And at this point, many of them suffer from PTSD. I came out in the summer as a middle aged white woman supporting BLM. While I no longer attend protests, I’m still involved because of what I saw and what I experienced … Cops radicalized me. It’s not the “killing” in Portland, it’s the brutality and unnecessary use of force. It’s about cops not following the law. It’s straight up racism. It’s not like there aren’t photos of cops flashing white supremacists hand signs. I’m not saying a broken window or a fire is ok, or that it improves anything, but as long as they are dismissed, they won’t stop. You seem to have found all the idiots involved. It doesn’t make sense if you never talk to one of the black voices. Maybe it still won’t make sense … but I do believe this issue is solvable. I just think for all you’ve covered, and for all your time on the ground, you’re still missing the point. Our precious city has a problem within the police department.

    1. It’s straight up racism.

      That assertion is so laughable it invalidates your entire attempt to bring an alternate perspective.

      1. That from the same guy who says in all earnestness “…But there are people, black people, involved who are very articulate and informed…”

        1. Angry white mobs trash the place, homeless black kids suffer PTSD by cleaning up after them, and the cops have to go and ruin the arrangement by being overtly racist.

        2. Lukki’s cribbing from Joe, but forgot the word “clean” :
          . . . African-American who is articulate and bright and clean and a nice-looking guy. I mean, that’s a storybook, man . . .

    2. I’m not sure if you’re not radicalizing others yourself? I’m not sure why you think no one ever talks to other races and you have all the solutions. As an example I was lifting with my native friend this weekend and I asked him how to pronounce our newly renamed bridge it was changed from an English word to a Salish word. Salish has a structure not close to English so I didn’t know where to start. He looked at me and said “I don’t know, but you white people think we need stuff renamed to our language” I said fair enough and we kept lifting. People talk and it’s not always the narrative you want to believe.

    3. “It’s not like there aren’t photos of cops flashing white supremacists hand signs.”

      Like the OK sign!

    4. This comment is proof that, to paraphrase H.L. Mencken, Portland knows what it wants, and deserves to get it good and hard.

    5. You live in one of the whitest cities in the country.

      1. That whole corner of the country is plenty white. There’s a reason the “white homeland” folks congregated there. To find out how that turned out, Google “Mulugeta Seraw”.

    6. So the police in Portland are racist.

      Who has been in charge of Portland for decades?

      Isn’t it weird how all these racist police are in Democratic cities?

      Isn’t it hilarious when the “leaders” of cities like Portland “show solidarity” with the protesters, not even once realizing the protesters ARE PROTESTING THE LEADERS AND THEIR SHITTY POLICIES?

      1. “Who has been in charge of Portland for decades?”

        Rich white people. Plus one rich Japanese-American fellow, named Bill Naito.

        1. If they don’t like rich white progressives running their city, then what would they prefer?

        2. Yep. Your pals are in charge. And you folks are the most racist people of all.

      2. “Isn’t it weird how all these racist police are in Democratic cities?”

        Isn’t it weird that the racist police in the rural areas don’t trigger any protests from the locals?

        1. We don’t protest them; they’re suspended then fired. Next . . . .

          Sheriff apologizes to black pastor in Virginia after arrest

        2. “Isn’t it weird that the racist police in the rural areas don’t trigger any protests from the locals?”

          Because everyone just knows there are no minorities in rural areas.

          1. “Because everyone just knows there are no minorities in rural areas.”

            Maybe not in your state.

    7. I do believe this issue is solvable.

      Of course it is. That’s why we have to get rid of people like you whose antics draw attention away from the core issues by creating emergencies which put everything else on hold.

    8. But there are people, black people, involved who are very articulate and informed who could give you and your readers a better understanding.

      That didn’t take long.

    9. but I do believe this issue is solvable. I just think for all you’ve covered, and for all your time on the ground, you’re still missing the point. Our precious city has a problem within the police department.

      Well you’re right about that.

    10. Why are you conflating the protests with the riots? They are entirely different things.

    11. PTSD?

      LOL.

    12. The article specifically quotes black people Ms. Rommelmann spoke to, and you can lie all you want about it, but police did not attack peaceful protesters. YOU, as it turns out, are the fucking liar.

      “Police brutality”?? In PORTLAND? Lol. This is a subjective judgement, and the evidence would seem to show that the police have been severely constrained and prevented from doing their jobs efficiently. And despite Antifas’ efforts to suppress “unauthorized coverage” (doesn’t that raise any suspicions with you, at all?), I see police exercising more restraint under vile abuse and violent attack, than I would be able to.

      PTSD? If someone is anxiety-ridden and weak-minded enough, they can suffer PTSD from having a dog bark at them. Homeless? Rich kids can camp out with their comrades all they want, doesn’t make me sympathetic.

      The “photos of cops flashing white supremacist hand signs” is bullshit. There are billions of photos of cops on the internet and who knows how many imaginary “hand signs” you want to freak out about. The OK sign I’ve used all my life? That looks like the sign basketball players use to signify a made three-pointer? The “thumbs up” sign? Can you not see how poisoned your mind is?

      Apparently now. Your city is a cesspool and it really isn’t the cops fault. That’s why you won’t have a solution. Because you are denying reality. But go ahead…en-f’ing-joy. Blame Trump. Blame the Illuminati. Blame those guys who attacked Jesse Smullet.

  21. “My husband told me the other day, ‘I feel like we have to save the city, and I’m not exactly sure how.'”

    I say we take and nuke the site from orbit. It’s the only way to be sure.

    1. My mommy always said there were no monsters – no real ones – but there are.

    2. “back off, bitch”

    3. Damn, you beat me to it.

    4. Game over, man

  22. Back in 2000 I was ready to move to Portland. I was sick and tired of California, but wanted a techie atmosphere where there were techie jobs, because that’s what I do. I visited a friend who had moved there. He got himself one of those nice older Portland homes with big yard. Very nice. Very affordable. But I saw some cracks. My friend was lefty through and through, but he was complaining about the nihilistic attitudes of the youth. He almost sounded like a cultural conservative with him criticism of open hook up culture in youth scene. Him, an ex-hippie. It was expected to get pregnant, an facial tattoo, and an abortion, before you were eighteen. It’s no accident that “suicide girls” started in Portland.

    But was it any different from San Francisco or Berkeley? In hindsight, it was. San Francisco is still a major financial center, with a quite culturall conservative Latino and Asian community. The city council (and county board) are gawdawful, but clean the homeless up and it’s not that bad of a place. Berkeley is still home to a major university and most of the crazies just move away when they graduate.

    Another friend lives in Troutsdale, a suburb of Portland. He lives in one of the thousand “county islands” and pays next to no taxes because of it. He’s a major “paleo-con” and just loves it. So I kept thinking of bailing on California and heading over.

    And another friend moved there. A lefty but not so lefty as the first. He loved it to. I got a better description from him. The crazies were really just a small group, but they managed to get the ear of an out of touch political machine. None of the downtown black flag stuff affected him at all, despite being only ten blocks from literal downtown.

    Still, I’m glad I didn’t move. Oregon has the same problem Washington has. One giant Blue city in a big Red state. It’s not a good mix. California is different. We have two big Blue cities, two medium Purple cities, and several Purpleish to Reddish cities. I think he’s a dick, but Kevin McCarthy is from my home county. I think he’s a dick, but Devin Nunes is too. California voters resoundingly trumped [sic] a bunch of lefty ballot measures last year. The state GOP shot itself in the foot through it’s own local ineptitude, but foot wounds can recover. Asian and Latino culture here are strongly conservative, they just don’t trust the local GOP that’s been against them for so many decades. But they are coming around after similar decades of Democrat abuse. Immigration is good, it’s the old family affluent Whites and old family affluent Californios that are the problem in California. Pelosi and Newsom and Villaraigosa pals.

    California has some hope left. I don’t think Oregon and Washington do, because they are Red states ruled by Blue city proggies out for revenge. They not deluded, they are quite open about their revenge plans. The same people in charge are the same hookup “abortion-and-tattoos” kids my friend talked about twenty years ago.

    1. “Another friend lives in Troutsdale, a suburb of Portland. He lives in one of the thousand “county islands” and pays next to no taxes because of it. He’s a major “paleo-con” and just loves it. So I kept thinking of bailing on California and heading over.”

      Troutdale doesn’ have an “s” in it. It’s also on the exact 180-degree wrong side of Portland if you’re interested in tech employment. If you have a new and exciting meth-cooking method, on the other hand, then Troutdale is where you want to be.

    2. “Still, I’m glad I didn’t move. Oregon has the same problem Washington has. One giant Blue city in a big Red state. It’s not a good mix. California is different. We have two big Blue cities, two medium Purple cities, and several Purpleish to Reddish cities.”

      Oregon has 36 counties. one of them is overwhelmingly blue (Multnomah) and several are light-blue (Marion, Lane, Benton) Eugene is more liberal than Portland is, because the Conservatives are all in Springfield grumbling about the university. Then there are the other counties… the ones in Southern Oregon are so anti-tax they won’t even fund a Sheriff’s patrol or public libraries. The ones in Eastern Oregon are so underpopulated that a couple of the counties have more square miles in them than people.
      In the olden times, the Oregon Republicans managed to send two Senators to Washington. Packwood and Hatfield in my youth. Hatfield retired and Packwood was chased out, and after that the Oregon R’s developed a problem winning statewide races. Their last governor was Vic Atiyeh and their last Senator was Gordon Smith. Atiyeh returned to running his rug business after being term-limited out of office, and Senator Smith returned to his frozen-vegetable business after losing an election which might have been effected by his decision to spend 7 figures buying antique golf clubs. (the opposition sold an “he’s out of touch with the rest of us” message based on owning million-dollar golf clubs.)

  23. Thank you, Nancy Rommelmann!

    After the first couple of paragraphs, I found myself thinking I was reading a really good dystopian saga by Heinlein. Then I remembered it isn’t fiction. Great reporting, and a great read.

    1. You’re definitely correct that it reads like fiction. Specifically, it reads like fiction written by somebody from somewhere else.

      1. LMAO This guy is so butthurt about people exposing the reality of portland are you associated with the local govt or something? 😀

      2. “You’re definitely correct that it reads like fiction. Specifically, it reads like fiction written by somebody from somewhere else.”

        Not sure, specifically, what you mean, outside of it being an opinion piece.

    2. Fun fact about the author! She was ostracized from Portland in 2019 for downplaying sexual assault victims in the MeToo movement, with the “MeNeither” movement, in effect wreaking the reputation of her husbands coffee business and running them both out of town. This isn’t great reporting, it’s regurgitated vengeance.

      https://www.google.com/amp/s/www.oregonlive.com/news/2019/01/part-owner-of-portland-coffee-company-questions-accounts-of-sexual-assault-survivors-on-youtube.html%3FoutputType%3Damp

    3. Fun fact about the author! She was ostracized from Portland in 2019 for downplaying sexual assault victims in the MeToo movement, with the “MeNeither” movement, in effect wreaking the reputation of her husbands coffee business and running them both out of town. This isn’t great reporting, it’s regurgitated vengeance.

      https://www.google.com/amp/s/www.oregonlive.com/news/2019/01/part-owner-of-portland-coffee-company-questions-accounts-of-sexual-assault-survivors-on-youtube.html%3FoutputType%3Damp

      1. LILANDER … you might want to stop rewriting history…Your fun fact is false – and your dozens of spam are pathetic.
        Here is the real story behind your spurious “… ostracized from Portland in 2019 for downplaying sexual assault victims in the MeToo movement…”
        Right here, read the TRUE STORY … about perfect Cancel Culture madness:
        https://quillette.com/2019/02/18/the-internet-locusts-descend-on-ristretto-roasters/

  24. But but but black lives matter dontcha know.

  25. “I asked her, ‘Then why were they barricaded at all, then?'” Burke recalled. “She was like, ‘Fuck the police.’ I don’t know if cognitive dissonance is the right word or what.”

    This is why you can’t explain to people that their outrage at “insurrection” is very conditional: they just can’t see it.

  26. “As people of color, this is not our way of getting the message across, by tearing up other people’s stuff,” says Terrance Moses, head of the Kenton Business Association. “The fact of the matter is that these are young white kids destroying people’s property to try and get a message across that they think is what black people want to hear.”

    This sums up progressivism and the democrat party nowadays.

    1. Fun fact about the author! She was ostracized from Portland in 2019 for downplaying sexual assault victims in the MeToo movement, with the “MeNeither” movement, in effect wreaking the reputation of her husbands coffee business and running them both out of town. This isn’t great reporting, it’s regurgitated vengeance.

      https://www.google.com/amp/s/www.oregonlive.com/news/2019/01/part-owner-of-portland-coffee-company-questions-accounts-of-sexual-assault-survivors-on-youtube.html%3FoutputType%3Damp

  27. The author provides some truly great and deep reporting on Portlantifa.

    This should be picked up by other outlets for a more in depth look at nihilism mixed with feckless government power…

    1. You’ve never been there, have you?

      1. Awww look who is REALLY REALLY butthurt because people expose Portland for the shithole it is lol

        1. Probably a member of the city council.

    2. Fun fact about the author! She was ostracized from Portland in 2019 for downplaying sexual assault victims in the MeToo movement, with the “MeNeither” movement, in effect wreaking the reputation of her husbands coffee business and running them both out of town. This isn’t great reporting, it’s regurgitated vengeance.

      https://www.google.com/amp/s/www.oregonlive.com/news/2019/01/part-owner-of-portland-coffee-company-questions-accounts-of-sexual-assault-survivors-on-youtube.html%3FoutputType%3Damp

      Reply

  28. as if under different circumstances one might encounter them at cotillion

    Because eventually even cocktail parties can begin to feel a little white trash.

  29. N. Rommelman’s reporting is among the best in _Reason_. I hope that it is reprinted elsewhere.

    1. Unless it gets fact-checked first, it probably won’t be.

      1. OK, James. We get it. Everything is fine in Portland. Nothing to see here.

    2. Fun fact about the author! She was ostracized from Portland in 2019 for downplaying sexual assault victims in the MeToo movement, with the “MeNeither” movement, in effect wreaking the reputation of her husbands coffee business and running them both out of town. This isn’t great reporting, it’s regurgitated vengeance.

      https://www.google.com/amp/s/www.oregonlive.com/news/2019/01/part-owner-of-portland-coffee-company-questions-accounts-of-sexual-assault-survivors-on-youtube.html%3FoutputType%3Damp

  30. “Political violence will not be tolerated,” she declared. “Not from the left, not from the right, and not from the center.”

    O RLY?

  31. Portland used to be the hidden jewel of the Northwest.

    Now even the locals avoid it if at all possible.

    The inversion was fast and shocking.

    1. Nobody goes there anymore. It’s too crowded.

      1. Deja vu all over again!

        1. Just a few years ago downtown was hoppin’.

  32. If given a choice between having to relocate to Portland, Baltimore, Cleveland or Detroit. I would have to pick one of the last three cities. Choosing between Portland or SF would be a tougher decision, but maybe I would have to pick Portland? If for no other reason than it’s easier to get away from the mass retardation there, whereas SF is still surrounded by the Bay Area and California

    1. That choice sounds like a choice between Russian Roulette, South African-style “necklacing,” a razor blade and a warm bathtub, and being eaten by wild dogs.

  33. Yeah thanks Nancy. I rarely read an entire piece in Reason anymore but this is damn good reporting.

    1. It sure SOUNDS like somebody who hasn’t actually been in Portland.

      1. Ok Karen, except we know its written by a Portlander, so maybe get over it? 😀

      2. Given the head scratching tone it sounds exactly like someone who bounced through Portland.

        1. A head/fist shaking tone would have said someone born/raised in Portland.

          A chuckling tone would have said anyone born/raised east of Portland all the way to the Continental divide.

  34. I do not believe they wanted to end up staring into a nihilistic fire, and if I could relay to activists a message it would be to stop devoting their munificent energy toward destruction, and to learn to be builders of the dream.

    Whoa whoa whoa, check out Jordan Peterson over here.

  35. You call someplace Paradise, kiss it goodbye.

    1. It got paved, they put up a parking lot. And Portland needs more of those.

  36. When I ask why, he explains that the night before, a group of protesters sloshed in a giant bucket of diarrhea into the room where he sits.

    Freedom of speech!

    1. I think we need to get James pollock’s 2 cents on this whole “bucket of diarrhea” thing.

      Not as bad as it sounds James?

      Haha.

  37. Had you come to Portland a little earlier, you might have seen the full flowering of police racism in Portland. “smoke ’em don’t choke ’em” It seems they had a habit of holding “sleeper holds” on black suspects a touch too long.

    As it is, you didn’t seem to notice that the police had to discipline one of it’s captains for his recreational Nazi cosplay, which happened while you were there.

    1. ” full flowering of police racism in Portland.”

      That’s what happens when a city government is dominated by Democrats. Just look all the other Hell holes from Milwaukee, to Chicago, to Houston.

  38. This is a very long article to not even touch on the fact that all those Portlandia Dreamers that had zero economic value to society, and were struggling financially to deal with the costs of living in a left leaning city, turned heavily to Marxism as the solution for their problems.

    Suddenly Portland became the US epicenter from making Marx cool again. Not just Marx either, they soon started treating Lenin like a saint, and some even Stalin. Antifa, have always been Marxist revolutionaries, and the Portland faction (Rose City Antifa) is no exception.

    These aren’t just idiots who couldn’t be profitable as circus performers and street meat vendors. These folks are literally Marxist revolutionaries. They want to overthrow the US government and end capitalism. They make that extremely clear, and that is their message that the media (and apparently Reason) is completely glossing over. The fires for their revolution may have been stoked by having a capitalist like Trump at the helm, but they are just as anti-USA with Biden driving (and they don’t like Harris either).

    1. No, there wasn’t room for your wacky rant in this very long story about.
      “a capitalist like Trump”
      by which you mean a fraudulent one?

      1. LOL look whos butthurt because the article and comments expose Portland for what it is 😀

      2. Everything Is So Terrible And Unfair! ™, James. Woe is you.

  39. With a Democrat as president, would the activists calm down and, like good children, figuratively go to sleep? I told the people claiming as much that they were nuts.

    This was never the claim. Antifas and the left establishment were allies. Allies don’t replace their mission with that of their ally, they cooperate while chasing a common goal. The fact that circumstances change doesn’t change that allyship. We sent the Soviets supplies when we were both fighting Nazis. Did the fact that we later stopped sending them supplies mean we were allies? Of course not.

    The key tell is not whether antifa stopped. It’s how the establishment changed operations when the common goal was met. Beforehand the establishment encouraged antifa. They minimized arrests and refused to prosecute those they did. They minimized their offenses to the media, and the establishment groups ran interference protecting antifa from identification and arrest.

    All of these support efforts stopped the day after the election.

    1. There were plenty of arrests just few prosecutions. They let them go.

      For reasons I have discussed here before.

      It is one thing to round up a thug. It is another to prove in court that this particular thug threw the Molotov torching this particular car. Then it is a local matter they have only limited resources.

      Sure the governor and the city botched the whole thing.

      As for Antifa. They should have read up on Mao. “The guerrilla moves among the people as a fish swims in the sea”

      They did not make any allies worth having here. The idiots trying to hold ground in their occupied zone made a classic blunder. The guerrilla strikes and then blends back into the population. The VC learned this after Tet and were highly effective.

      There is a way to put an end to that and it is local on a personal level. You put in foot patrols and make personal relationships with local residents and business. You become the good guys providing security.

      At the same time you need to be able to actively provide that security. That requires tactical superiority. That did not happen last summer.

      1. After what Antifa and the CHAZ/CHOP-ers did to Portland, it is average, everyday people who now have to move as a fish swims in the sea and be non-descript.

  40. Thing is Oregon and especially Portland has a racist past that is embarrassing to even read about. I come from the north coast and rust belt America. Nothing like that.

    There are issues but people rooted in the community don’t want this. Too busy making a living to deal with this stuff which brings them nothing.

    I think the quote Brian brought up sums it best.

    “The fact of the matter is that these are young white kids destroying people’s property to try and get a message across that they think is what black people want to hear.”

    Yup no they don’t. You are not doing anyone any favors with this.

    1. It’s what young black people want to hear. It’s been evident since the Obama years and Ferguson. Ya Basta! Enough is enough.

      1. Young people everywhere want to hear that they did not get a fair deal and want more stuff.

        Racism for some reason I do not understand why, still exists.

        So my answer to the first complaint is because we worked our butts off. You make your own opportunities. Now get to work.

        To the second. I am all ears. Now tell me what to do about it. I have no idea how to eliminate assholes from the human population.

        1. I think the days are over when you can tell young people that if they study and work hard enough, everything will be fine, They think it’s a scam. hence their radicalization.

      2. And it goes way back from the Obama years.

        1. Today’s young radicals don’t. They are the ones behind Ferguson, Portland, etc.

          1. So for them is it slavery…Obama? They don’t even know any of the stuff in between?

            How ignorant can you be when we have been pushing this history for decades. Let alone living it. Difficult for a late boomer to understand. We came so far and then did it just stop?

            I suppose the failure is we did not pass on the basic truths.

            Life is not fair.

            Nobody owes you anything.

            Government is not the answer.

            The rest is commentary.

            1. They don’t have to know history to take exception to the mistreatment they are subjected to by the police. Or being gassed, jailed, brutalized or shot. It’s what’s happening today that is mobilizing the youth. Look at footage of Ferguson etc. They are all young people, often just teens. Whether or not black senior citizens deplore the looting of corporate chain stores is irrelevant.

    2. “You are not doing anyone any favors with this.” —
      Democrat Politicians, “We are from the government and are here to help.”

  41. I’ve only passed through Portland, changing planes. There is a spectacular view of a mountain, a volcanic Fujisan-like cone not far in the distance. The city itself is erupting, though. Burn baby burn. Green shoots of change won’t be too long in coming. Today is the first day of spring.

  42. Why are trouble-making dirtbags being legitimized as “activists”?

    1. Maybe it’s just me, but I wouldn’t say calling them “activists” legitimizes them. In my experience most activists are annoying and sometimes destructive assholes.

  43. Is that backpacker on the right nekkid? Like my Grandma and Aunt would say: “They…Loooord!”

    1. And isn’t that guy in the center on Saturday Night Live?

      1. He did that Portlandia show. A somewhat funny show that made fun of that whole Portland vibe.

    2. He’s not nekkid. He’s wearing a back pack, a face mask, goggles and a watch. He’s geared up and ready for anything, man.

      1. According to the Late, Great Atlanta Writer/Comedian Lewis Grizzard:

        Naked=You’ve got no clothes on.

        Nekkid= You’ve got no clothes on and you’re up to something.

        Ergo, he’s definitely nekkid. And wouldn’t. Dick and crazy and all that.

  44. Nancy what are you doing back in Portland? Aren’t you afraid Antifa or blm will hurt you?

    Go back to New York you far right cunt. You aren’t welcome in Oregon you stupid cunt.

    1. Red Rocks White Privilege
      March.9.2021 at 4:01 pm
      I’ll have no qualms about stringing you and your traitor family up.

      Unmask your email and you can prove it.

      KillAllMormons
      March.9.2021 at 6:43 pm
      Good one traitor. I’ll do that if you give me your address

      Red Rocks White Privilege
      March.9.2021 at 9:48 pm
      3400 Albion Street
      Denver, Colorado

      Unmask your email like you promised, you hicklib faggot.

      1. I highly doubt a inbred redneck like you lives in Denver. Let alone at an islamic center.

        1. Come to Denver and you’ll find out, insha’Allah.

          1. Good one traitor!

            1. Unmask your email like you promised, sharmuta.

              1. I’m not a moron. That’s not your address.

                The only reason I’d come there is to kill Nathan Mackinnon. Fuck him and fuck the Avs.

                Most importantly fuck your uneducated, inbred, bigoted ass.

              2. You must be Mormon. It would explain the bigotry and stupidity. Either that or you have to stick up for your fellow traitors like Chuck.

                Get your America hating ass out of MY COUNTRY traitor!

                1. The hicklib faggot chimps out like all hicklib faggots do.

                  Come to Denver so I can show you how a True and Honest Muslim treats hicklib faggots, you hicklib faggot.

                  1. Even if you’re muslim you most likely dont live at an islamic center.

                    Goddamn you’re stupid.

                    You’re the pussy who won’t give me your address like you promised you goddamn Mormon loving coward.

                    Shut your inbred ass up you traitor pussy

                    1. When are you coming to Denver so I can hang you from the Colorado Boulevard bridge, you hicklib faggot?

                    2. Shut up you bigot. The only reason I’d come to Denver is to fuck up Nathan Mackinnon.

                      It’s a nice place despite having a backwards hillbilly like you there.

                      Go fuck yourself mormon loving, Trump worshipping traitor.

                    3. The hicklib faggot pusses out again.

                    4. You’re the one pussying out bitch. You haven’t given me your address.

                      If you hate America and freedom why don’t you leave you pussy ass bitch traitor?

                    5. I gave you my address, you hicklib faggot.

                      Let me know when your kufir ass comes to Denver so you can get the defenstration your AIDS-riddled corpse deserves!

                    6. An Islamic center wouldn’t let a bigot like you live there. Nice try Mormon moron.

                      Why do you have Trump’s dick so far down your throat you’ve decided to betray your own country? Have you no shame you traitor?

                      Sorry I keep calling you out for being a freedom hating traitor, but as a freedom loving patriot I believe you traitors need to be ostracized as much as possible.

                    7. No surprise that the hicklib faggot is obsessed with dick-sucking. That’s why he’ll meet the fate of Matthew Shepherd, insha’Allah.

                    8. Dude if you were muslim you wouldn’t be buddies with all the fascist bigots on here.

                      God fucking damn you’re stupid.

                      It’s obvious you’re an uneducated mormon piece of trash.

                      Fuck off traitor

                    9. Just shut your traitor mouth lil boy it’s past your bedtime. Go tell cunt mommy and redneck daddy they fucked up and raised an entitled, anri-American, fascist traitor. Although they probably are Trump worshipping traitors too.

                      What are you like 14?

                    10. Just shut your traitor mouth lil boy it’s past your bedtime.

                      Unmask your email and you can have the chance to do it personally, you hicklib faggot.

                      Or just come to Denver. You know where to find me.

  45. Portland is just an alternate ending to “Lord of the Flies”. Now we know what happens if the boat doesn’t stop to investigate the fire.

    1. But in Lord of the Flies, those kids were at least capable of taking care of themselves.

  46. Antifa is a meth/money laundering cartel. The behavior and wanton violence of young residents is due to a drug that makes crack seem mild. The real brain damage and violence that comes from that shit is what you are seeing. Abolish the police, abolish borders and rule of law is making the Antifa cartel wealthy (who are most likely behind funding the Democratic Socialists). Irreversible brain damage and violence is what the non addicted are left with.

  47. We, our society, used to know how to deal with rioters:
    1. Order them to disperse.
    2. Treat those who fail to promptly follow that order like the mad dogs they are emulating. Shoot them down in the streets they are ravaging.
    That restored order to the threatened venue where it thereafter was peacefully maintained.
    When and why did we forget this?

  48. The first law of economics is, “anything you subsidize, you get more of.” Well, the progressives of Portland have subsidized mayhem, chaos, and lawlessness and it has turned what once was a beautiful city into a Third World waste land. You reap what you sow. To fix it you need political will and a police force willing to do what it takes to restore order. Rudy Giuliani understood that which is how he fixed New York. These little anarchist punks need a baton to the head and six months in jail.

  49. How do you get your hands on a giant bucket of diarrhea? I’m asking, of course, for a friend…

    1. Oh, just hang around here and read the trolls long enough and Voila!

      1. Probably scooped up a few of SQRLSY’s comments.

  50. Who wins from the chaos? Perhaps explain the defense of Antifa, the anonymous people that dumped paint on a 75-year-old trying to douse a fire and then wrapped her with yellow caution tape and surrounded her and yelled at her to die. And half of Portland supports them (see the close mayoral race where the pro-Antifa candidate barely lost to the extremely right-wing Ted Wheeler. I just toured downtown today to see if there’s hope. It’s great if you like the intelligently crafted patina of plywood with a few “cops drink piss” tags. Really cultured folks! And the Red House debacle there? The media (see Willamette Weekly) sent a reporter who described a party-like scene. To WW’s credit, they published a letter from a resident, terrified because of the gasoline-soaked tires placed against his house. Residents terrified to say anything. This is not a blow against the empire. If anything, destroying small businesses is better for Walmart and Amazon. Sometimes I think Antifa are just the shock troops that will enable our Big Friendly Government to “save us” from them. And the black people who begged them to stop? Ignored in the 200 + days of rioting and destruction. Minimized by the media because they are “anti-police”. THAT is racism easy to see right there on the street.

  51. The Dream of the ’90s Died in Portland

    Trevor Goodchild: The dream–To awaken our world…

    Aeon Flux: You’re out of control…

    Trevor: I take control! Whose side are you on?

    Aeon: I take no side…

    Trevor: You’re skating the edge!…

    Aeon: I am the edge!…

    Trevor: What you truly want, only I can give!…

    Aeon: You don’t give it, you can’t even buy it…and you just…don’t…get it!

  52. Poor Nancy, She gets called out publicly for her participation in a video cast defending sex abusers and has been on an anti Portland rampage ever since. She can’t handle the heat so Ms. Snowflake flees to New York. Protesters taking over block by block? Bullshit.
    The million or so of us that actually live here like the city. And making reference to Proud Boy affiliate Joey Gibson really takes the cake.
    Yeah, the city government and the PPD suck. And it sucks that Din Johnson’s coffee shops and Andy Ricker’s empire and a few hundred other restaurants and bars closed because of the Covid lockdown. But to put the onus on a few hundred discontented assholes in a metro area of over 1 million is bullshit written from the pen by a whiner with an ax to grind.

    1. So how long is this shit going to go on? When will the million or so of you that actually live there send these children to their rooms?

    2. Except your city really is a Calhoun behavioral sink, so what are you getting so assmad about?

      1. “Except your city really is a Calhoun behavioral sink, so what are you getting so assmad about?”

        Haven’t ever seen anyone besides me mention the behavioral sink. Kudos!

      2. Yes, yes it is, so whatever you do, please stay far away.

  53. Portland was destroyed by single parenthood and, not to be repetitious, parental abuse.
    They will continue to destroy the society that failed to protect them until the so called adults start ostracizing the abusers and their supporters.

  54. the occupation of their city by federal forces and the murder of people of color in cities across the country.

    What are hyperbole and fantasy.

  55. So much for that “treat people the way you want to be treated” bullshit.

  56. I suspect that the actual cause of this movement was rising rents. The racial justifications are mere excuses, because there are hardly any non-white people in Portland. The rents are rising, in part because of the city’s restriction on new construction. What they should have done is abolished those restrictions and let people build skyscrapers for the people of Portland to live in.

  57. Progressivism always ends up being about putting people on lists and purging them. Without any real enemies to persecute, they turn on each other.
    If the last two people on earth were leftists, they would eventually spend all their time denouncing each other.

  58. ” Soon, some who’d come to Portland expecting the city to deliver their dreams grew restless. They couldn’t find their footing, or couldn’t settle on who they were supposed to be, or both.”

    Reading that in the article, I was instantly reminded of this from “Slouching Towards Berkeley” by David Horowitz:

    “In 1967, after the Be-In across the bay, Berkeley began to sprout communes and collectives; it gained a subpopulation of ‘street people.’ Almost overnight the city had become a theater at which there were not enough seats to go around. Telegraph Avenue was now one of the most famous promenades in the country, and young people came from all over the country to put in an appearance, arriving without money and with only vague expectations, like the Gold Rush immigrants one hundred years earlier.”

    A population of naïve young idiots with high expectations pours into a new location and finds all the seats already filled. What could go wrong? Disappointment turns to frustration and then to rage, and the fires start burning.

  59. Great article but there is one big unanswered question I.e. How do these folks feed , clothe, and shelter themselves? This crap is not a spasm of outrage. It’s sustained and that takes resources. Pastry chef or microbrewmeister by day, Black Bloch revolutionary wannabe by night?

    1. We are absolutely fine with you never knowing the answer to that question.

      Fun fact about the author: she was ostracized from Portland in 2019 for downplaying sexual assault victims in the MeToo movement, with the “MeNeither” movement, in effect wreaking the reputation of her husbands coffee business and running them both out of town. This isn’t great reporting, it’s regurgitated vengeance.

      https://www.google.com/amp/s/www.oregonlive.com/news/2019/01/part-owner-of-portland-coffee-company-questions-accounts-of-sexual-assault-survivors-on-youtube.html%3FoutputType%3Damp

  60. All of this foolishness could be ended in one night or less if the city or residents took charge. They don’t. No one in Portland cares. If they want their city to burn to the ground then so be it. Sane people need to stop worrying or paying them any mind.

  61. For people trying to deny the author has significant ties to portland:

    “The measure passed (and was one of the reasons my husband and I decided last year to sell our home instead of rent it).”

    From the article. My guess is they left the shithole last year.

  62. If the protesters didn’t support the rioters by coming out every night to give them cover, then the police could arrest the bad guys and the destruction would stop. Because everyone tells me there are only a few bad guys. The majority are peaceful protesters.

    Tell me why the peaceful protesters are out supporting the destruction each night.

    1. Because they don’t approve of the peaceful police.

      1. Which can absolutely be expressed by peacefully demolishing local businesses and blowing diarrhea at officers. LOL im thinking blowing diarrhea is like you posting comments 😀

        God, you are a disgrace.

        1. Smashing the state can be a dirty business. Keep to the sidelines and everything should be OK.

  63. Trump NEVER instituted a Muslim ban. I still don’t understand how this lie can fester. He instituted a travel ban, from I think, 7 predominantly Muslim countries, but Christians couldn’t travel from there either. And yet, there were no bans from Southeast Asia, which has a incredibly large Muslim population. No bans from predominantly Muslim countries in Africa. Ignorance in our media is stunning.

    1. The Muslim ban that left off the 2 countries with the largest Muslim population. Rolled my eyes when I read that line in the article. I don’t like seeing Reason traffic in bullshit.

      1. ” I don’t like seeing Reason traffic in bullshit.”

        Between the bullshit and the tribal virtue signaling there isn’t much else to be found here.

  64. I lived in Portland from 2006 to 2014 and have been a landlord since. This article states exactly why I left Portland and have both of my properties up for sale now.

  65. And we wonder why there was an authoritarian reaction in 2016?

    Let Portland descend further into hellishness, so that it can be a west coast Detroit. An example for the rest of us not to follow.

    1. You will note that Detroit remembers is its last race riots, and the police chief and mayor did not allow Antifa and BLM riots to destroy Detroit last summer.

    2. Yes, everyone listen to the IndependentTexan, who’s state is in such shambles, they can’t even keep the power and water flowing during a crisis.

  66. An interesting article on Nancy Rommelmann’s take on Portland, from the Oregonian:

    “Donald Trump last year gleefully tweeted about the “Radical Left fools in Portland,” insisting they had spent months vandalizing and burning down the “poorly run” progressive city. Nancy Rommelmann believes this viewpoint has some merit.”

    https://www.oregonlive.com/portland/2021/03/portland-activists-rage-mindlessly-against-the-machine-former-portlander-argues-in-provocative-reason-essay.html

  67. Anyone who lives in or around Portland is an idiot or insane. Portland makes the depiction of New York City in the movie “Escape From New York City” look like Nirvana.

    1. Yes we are! Stay away.

  68. This is all fourth generation warfare (cultural psyops), patently designed to rip the traditional foundations of the US apart (white, conservative, heterosexual), to facilitate a complete takedown of the country (endless wars, endless debts, endless trip into the abyss). These ACTS OF WAR, and make no mistake, these tactics destroy nations just as effectively as carpet bombing, were developed by the (((CIA))) during the WWII era, and suppressed (Read Christopher Simpson’s Science of Coercion), so don’t go ask your typical Phd in the social sciences to explain what psyops is because they have no idea. Why is this happening? Well, the big picture reality is the world is still fighting the aftermath of WWII, when the awful Nazi’s ran jews and catholics from power (for a minute), and threatened all those centuries old empires in France and the UK . Never again will there be an independent nation state that will challenge their hegemony. You can see the erosion’s beginning right after WWII with the dropout beatniks, then the drugged hippies (don’t trust anyone over 30), then the feminists (all american men are oppressive), then the homosexuals, then the environmentalists (shut down our resources), then the latino invasions, then the BLM/ANTIFA. It has been a slow drip progression of cultural destruction as distraction from the hijacking of our government and illegal use of our armed forces to kill MILLIONS OF NON-THREATENING PEOPLE ALL OVER THE PLANET, the massive debts to do it, the wall street ponzi scams and bailouts, the securitized 2 quadrillion dollar derivatives market, the loss of our manufacturing, and on and on. shit, I could write a book here detailing the massive losses, disempowerments and utter wipeout of this country while the young watch sadistic models in our mass media glorifying insanity, and have no idea what their getting hit with (I didn’t see it either as a kid back in the 70s). They rape the minds of the young, separate them from their history, destroy a collective identity and long term meaning, and then pull the plug, crash the markets, and create mass famine in our cities (82% lives in urban areas with no food), while the (((scum))) who did this flee into their private circle (2017), their elysium (2013), their island (2005), leaving behind world war z (2013), children of men (2006) and the road (2009). It’s all predictive programming.

  69. What happened to the dream of the 90s?

    It came true.

    “Here we are now, entertain us.”

  70. What is really astonishing is in these leftist cities where the riots and chaos has went on for months they are protesting against the policies of the leftist they put in office. When the next election comes along they will once again vote for the same leftist or ones similar and soon be rioting and protesting again. The thought they are the problem never seems to enter their reality as they cycle through doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results.

    1. It doesn’t make sense because it’s all lies and distraction from much larger problems. Bottom line is the national debt gets larger, future generations sink even further into endless debt, and jews continue to use our armed forces to slaughter millions all over the planet. We are dealing with psychopathic mass murderers, cementing the axiom that war is the father and king of us all.

  71. Thankfully, there won’t be any bloat or corruption when Biden signs the trans-Pacific partnership deal to outmaneuver China on regional trade! fantazi gecelik

  72. An absolutely terrific piece, one that only Nancy Rommelmann could write. I had the privilege to meet her at Columbia University a few years ago at a talk with Meghan Daum; it was a truly awesome experience.

    1. Fun fact about Nancy, she was ostracized from Portland in 2019 for downplaying sexual assault victims in the MeToo movement, with the “MeNeither” movement, in effect wreaking the reputation of her husbands coffee business and running them both out of town. This isn’t great reporting, it’s regurgitated vengeance.

      https://www.google.com/amp/s/www.oregonlive.com/news/2019/01/part-owner-of-portland-coffee-company-questions-accounts-of-sexual-assault-survivors-on-youtube.html%3FoutputType%3Damp

  73. I think every individual has the right to survival. When the pressure is too much the people has no action than to reacts

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