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Saturday, September 17, 2005

Brame Documents 

They'll become public.



Open Thread 




Running Again 

It's already time to declare your intentions to run for office in '06 I guess.



Unendorsed 

The Stranger pulls the plug on its endorsement of Nickels over the monorail. And Dan Savage wants his money back.

For what it's worth—and it ain’t worth much, since he’s running unopposed—the Stranger is probably gonna yank our Nickels endorsement on Monday. So if you're filling out your absentee ballot this weekend and you're consulting a Stranger cheat sheet, you might wanna write in someone else.

Oh, and I want my money back. I made a $300 contribution to Nickels’ campaign based in large part on his support—despite how perfunctory it always seemed—for bringing elevated rapid transit to Seattle. At his campaign kick-off breakfast, Nickels promised to build the monorail. That promise is now inoperative, it seems, or it was a lie to begin with. So I want my money back, Greg. I’m not going to do anything idiotic with the money—I’m not going to give it to any of the dopes running against you (but I might give it to whoever winds up facing Casey Corr in the general election)—but the money ain’t yours anymore.
...Damn, Edited a bunch



15.5% 

Of King County adults don't have healthcare.

Following a five-year dip between 1997 and 2001, the rates of uninsured adults have been increasing for three years. In 1991, the first year information about insurance coverage was gathered, 9 percent of adults in the county were uninsured.

"These numbers are unacceptable," said Carolyn Edmonds, chairwoman of the board. Edmonds said she wants the board to discuss and consider specific policies to address the needs of the uninsured.

The report also found gaping disparities in health insurance coverage linked to income and race.

The largest percentage of those without insurance -- 41 percent -- has household incomes between $15,000 and $24,999. They often can't afford the increasingly expensive insurance packages offered by employers, or they're part-time workers who don't qualify for insurance through their jobs.



Friday, September 16, 2005

Lllllliiiiiiiiaaaaaarrrrrrrr! 

Neil Johnson who's running for Bonney Lake Mayor apparently made up his college degree.

First-term City Councilman Neil Johnson, who’s running for mayor along with four others in Tuesday’s primary election, says he earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in general business administration from North Dakota State University three years ago.

Rhonda Kitch, the assistant registrar in the Fargo school’s office of registration and records, said Thursday that officials “scoured the records” under his name but found no evidence that Johnson received a degree.

Kitch said her office would need Johnson’s date of birth or Social Security number to be sure. Johnson wouldn’t give this information to The News Tribune, nor would he reveal the online company he said he used to complete his degree.

He said he was checking it out himself.
Now technically it's a non-partisan race. But a quick look at his web page gives a good idea of what team he plays for. It's all run the government like a business and lower your taxes. And literally 50% of his links are for the Chamber of Commerce. So I'm going to extrapolate using Republicans figuring out how felons voted logic to point out that all Republicans lie about their qualifications, and probably none of them actually graduated from college.



Holy Cats 

How is it that when Darryl and I both send letters to Dino Rossi, mine is more serious? I mean really!

[Thank your family and your dog Dubya here]

Many people want to know my position on Initiative 912, the repeal of the gas tax increase.

I have reluctantly come out against the initiative.

While there is much merit in the initiative, I believe that, because of the political makeup of the Washington State Supreme Court, it will be almost impossible to uphold this initiative. I am, therefore, ending my support for I-912.

[Tell voters that you don’t know where you are going, but you want to go there with them.]



5th Time's The Charm 

Well we all knew it was coming and here it is.

Nickels is asking the City Council to hold an emergency session next Thursday to put an advisory measure on the Nov. 8 ballot. Next Friday is the deadline to submit a ballot measure to King County Elections.

The measure, which would be Seattle's fifth monorail ballot question, is intended to ask the public whether the monorail should still be built given the project's financial constraints, Nickels said.

"That gives the monorail board one more opportunity at its Wednesday meeting to do the right thing and put its own measure on the ballot for voters to decide this November," Nickels said. "If they are unwilling to do that, then the city will do it for them."

The Seattle Monorail Project will hold a special session tomorrow, most of it behind closed doors. Yesterday was the deadline set last month by the mayor for SMP to offer a public re-vote plan -- to either increase taxes or shorten the line.

This afternoon, Gov. Christine Gregoire issued a statement supporting Nickels' move. "I personally do not believe to the monorail is the right approach because it will potentially divert attention and resources and not solve our critical transportation safety issues. Today, the Mayor placed this issue exactly where it belongs: in front of the people."



Walla Walla Port Commission 

Just so you don't say I'm overly King County Centric. I don't know anything about them other than what this article says though.

Retired real estate investor and former port commission candidate Barlow Corkrum, appraiser and Walla Walla County Planning Commission Chairman Michael Fredrickson and former tavern owner Jim Weimer are seeking to fill the seat left open by four-term commissioner Ken Jantz.

Jantz, representing the eastern portion of the port district that includes Waitsburg, Prescott and part of Walla Walla, decided earlier this year not to seek another six-year term.

The candidates seeking to replace Jantz shared praise for the port's economic development efforts, such as its work in forming a coalition to lobby for money to widen Highway 12 and its role in landing the proposed RailEx rail terminal at a site near Wallula, which would expedite shipments of fresh produce to the East Coast.



Thursday, September 15, 2005

We Are Good People 

And by we, I of course mean a group of people that doesn't include me. But happens to be from my town. Or rather a town across the water from my town that I associate with because I love it. But yeah. Also, I love Dave Eggers, but no thanks on the hug.



Voters Pamphlet 

Here's for King County.



Post 912 Initiative 

I've fleshed out one of my two post 912 initiatives. Clearly I'm not a lawyer, so any advice from any actual lawyers would be appreciated. And yes, I do intend to file something like this if 912 passes. Possible slogan: yeah it's a crappy idea, but finally a crappy idea that benefits the right Washingtonians.

Whereas the Puget Sound Counties are the driving economic force in the state;

Whereas several counties are giant deadbeats that drain both the resources of the state and the resources of the non-deadbeat counties;

Whereas people outside of the RTID voted for 912 because they didn’t want to pay for more than the cost of replacing the Viaduct;

Whereas many of the deadbeat counties supported 776’s repeal of King, Pierce and Snohomish Counties’ taxes even though the people in the three county region supported those taxes;

And whereas fuck those deadbeats;

Be it resolved that every local road project in a county that both gives less per capita and takes more per capita from the state road Highway budget must be approved by a statewide vote.

The money that would be used on local projects will instead go to the state Highway budget.



Stranger Endorsements 

Get the only endorsements that matter here.



Wednesday, September 14, 2005

Become a Poll Worker 

King County is looking for old ladies to sit behind a table and ask folks what their name is and then hand them a piece of paper. And the best part is you don't even have to be an old lady, although it does help.

This year, King County is recruiting an additional 600 poll workers to meet new requirements for handling provisional ballots. Under new procedures, there will be one provisional ballot judge at each of 527 polling places whose sole responsibility is to issue and account for provisional ballots.

A provisional ballot is issued to any voter whose name is not in the poll book, any absentee voter casting a ballot at the polls for any reason, or a poll voter who does not provide identification. To ensure provisional ballots are counted accurately, King County is implementing new procedures including making them look different from regular poll ballots and preventing them from being accepted by vote tabulation equipment.

As the most populous county in the state, King has more than five times the number of polling places than Pierce County, the second most populous.

King County is currently recruiting poll workers to serve every function at the polling place. Poll workers are responsible for opening polling places on Election Day instructing voters on proper voting procedures, and safeguarding the elections process.



SnoHoCoLowUnemplo 

Snohomish County is adding jobs at the fastest clip of any county in the state.



What Inslee Said 

Seattle for Dean has the goods on his statement about Katrina.

Also, perhaps you've heard of the Red Cross.



Dear Dino Rossi; 

Hi it's me again. I know I haven't written you in a while, and I hope you don't miss me. I've shed my joke ideas that would make as much sense as your post election strategy (pee your pants, that still amuses me) and I'll probably for the only time offer you some sincere advise. As David Goldstein has noted, you have not taken a position on I-912, the death and gridlock initiative despite the business community's opposition to it.

So I'm asking you to do something bold. Not only come out against I-912, but do an ad with Chris Gregoire. I know what you're thinking, "She's been pretty wishy washy on 912 too." Also you're probably thinking, "I'd sooner put my nutsack in a wood chipper than do a joint commercial with Gregoire." Those are fair points, but I think if you'd show a willingness to do it, it would save our infrastructure and make you not look like the jackass you are. Also, you could take credit for the idea if you want, nobody reads my blog.

So seriously, don't piss your pants until after election day, and do a joint ad with Governor Gregoire before it.

Good luck,

Carl Ballard.

...Dang it's tough to find his email, but sent and edited.



Shake Shake Shake 

We're 30 times more likely to have an earthquake in the next couple weeks as they usually are. But since we usually don't have an earthquake that's 30 X not much. And It'd be in Seattle.

Thanks to Randy for the tip.



Tuesday, September 13, 2005

B&O Minimum Lift 

Nickels is proposing increasing the minimum on the B&O tax from $50,000 to $75,000.



Drinking Liberally 

I will be there despite the rumors last week. Starts at 7:30 at Town Hall this week. We'll be seeing someone I'd never heard of and it's 10 bucks to get in the door.



May to November 

I'm all for a slow delebrative process, but should it really take 7 months to kick out a clearly crooked mayor?



Monday, September 12, 2005

600 Steves 

Tee hee hee. I love Project Steve.

I quickly discovered an interesting personality quirk about scientists named Steve. They seem as interested in getting their name on NCSE tee shirts as on serious scientifically published papers. (Although when it comes to published scientific papers, NCSE's Steves kick the crap out of the DI Fellows, and that ain't gonna stop, boys and girls, is it?)

So now, as you pass the 600 mark, I just want to say thank you to all the NCSE Steves for your efforts on behalf of quality science education. It was with the utmost joy and pleasure I gave birth to you... in a metaphorical sense. In a physical sense that would not only be biologically impossible, but would hurt like hell, and you don't have to be a biologist to know that, d'ya?



Financing 

Trouble financing really says nothing about the technology, nothing about a lot of things. But it is troubling.

The Seattle Monorail Project's debt limit far exceeds other local governments in proportion to its annual revenue, with a maximum debt capacity about 31 times the agency's annual revenue, according to a report issued Monday by state Auditor Brian Sonntag.

The audit lists a series of other issues: Over the past 18 months, the Seattle Monorail Project paid consultants without documenting their work, selected other consultants in ways that were inconsistent with state law, and spent $11,500 on a parade float, an action that "appears inconsistent with the agency's purpose of planning, building and operating a monorail." The audit also cited concerns about the agency's compliance with the state Open Meetings Act and noted that three board members didn't file financial disclosure forms until auditors asked them.

Sonntag said that because his office has received a lot of questions about the SMP's ability to pay its debts, he decided to include in the report a table showing the ratio of maximum debt limit to annual revenue for several local governments. The Seattle Monorail Project's state-approved debt capacity of $1.3 billion is about 31 times its annual revenue, much higher than King County's debt capacity (18 times its annual revenue), Sound Transit's (14 times its annual revenue), and other governments.

Overall, however, the state audit found that the monorail agency in most cases complied with state law and its own regulations.

"The bottom line is it was a clean audit," said SMP spokeswoman Natasha Jones.



Strip Clubs 

Looks like the city of Seattle will be having more naked ladies. By the way, yes the title and the last sentence were a blatant attempt to get some search engine traffic. But it does tie to a legit news story.

The city of Seattle's 17-year-old "temporary" moratorium on new strip-club licenses was ruled unconstitutional by US District Judge James L. Robart today, ending a de facto ban on new strip clubs that has lasted for nearly two decades.

In his ruling, Robart agrees with plaintiff (and aspiring strip-club owner) Bob Davis that the indefinite moratorium constitutes "an unconstitutional prior restraint on free expression because it fails to provide adequate procedural safeguards," such as a reasonable time frame to issue or deny strip-club licenses and the ability to appeal if a license is mistakenly denied. "The City not only fails to provide a specified time for rendering a licensing decision in its adult entertainment regulations, but it goes a step further in suppressing protected speech and prohibiting any new adult cabarets from opening."



Sunday, September 11, 2005

12,700 

The recall West folks have enough signatures to go ahead. But they're still looking for a pad. So sign up if you haven't already.



Magical Reserves 

I do love Republican logic. When we were trying to pay for roads and healthcare for children there just weren't any reserves and boo hoo hoo. Now Gregoire could suspend the gas tax because we have vast reserves. Of course we don't, but that's neither here or there.

DeBolt said Thursday he intends to bring the subject up again this morning when he meets with the governor and other legislators.

The relief is needed to help those struggling with rising fuel costs and could keep the state from slipping back into recession, DeBolt contends. He would pay the $270 million cost out of state reserves, contradicting his own caucus' position earlier this year that the state did not have a large enough reserve.
So remember family values Republicans, in this time of national crisis it's more important that we encourage gasoline consumption than it is that our children have healthcare.



Open Thread 




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