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Saturday, June 24, 2006

Initiatives 

The Stranger has a nice cheat sheet on all of the proposed initiatives.



Just Like Dick Cheney 

So, unlike the General, I know nothing about Joyce Mulliken. But this paragraph about how she got chosen for the job cracks me up.

The 60-year-old Mulliken said she was initially advising the governor's office on someone to succeed hearing board member Judy Wall of Chelan County, whose term expires Friday. But as the discussions progressed, Mulliken said, she realized she was interested in the job.



"Identity theft throughout the state of Washington is rampant" 

Holy cats! 268,000 victims in Washington alone.

...Link fixed



Friday, June 23, 2006

World Cup 

I'll be headed out tomorrow to Mick Kelly's to watch Argentina versus Mexico. Should be a goodie. I'm rooting for the country that gave us Julio Cortazar. Then Sunday I'm going to try to catch the early game at Kells, because nothing's more fun than rooting against England in an Irish establishment. And probably stay through the noon match between Portugal and the Netherlands. I'll be rooting for the team that gave us crappy cartoonists who parts of the Muslim world don't like. Join me why don't you? First round's on me.



Gregoire Packing the Eastern Washington Growth Board 

Oddly with Republicans. Is this at least a seat we can contest?



Cantwell's Position on the War 

She voted for language that includes the following:

United States military forces should not stay in Iraq indefinitely and the people of Iraq should be so advised[...]

(6) the Administration needs to explain to Congress and the American people its strategy for the successful completion of the mission in Iraq.

(c) Reports to Congress on United States Policy and Military Operations in Iraq.--Not later than 30 days after the date of the enactment of this Act, and every three months thereafter until all United States combat brigades have redeployed from Iraq, the President shall submit to Congress an unclassified report on United States policy and military operations in Iraq. Each report shall include the following:

(1) The current military mission and the diplomatic, political, economic, and military measures, if any, that are being or have been undertaken to successfully complete or support that mission, including:

(A) Efforts to convince Iraq's main communities to make the compromises necessary for a broad-based and sustainable political settlement.

(B) Engaging the international community and the region in the effort to stabilize Iraq and to forge a broad-based and sustainable political settlement.

(C) Strengthening the capacity of Iraq's government ministries.

(D) Accelerating the delivery of basic services.

(E) Securing the delivery of pledged economic assistance from the international community and additional pledges of assistance.

(F) Training Iraqi security forces and transferring security responsibilities to those forces and the government of Iraq.

(2) Whether the Iraqis have made the compromises necessary to achieve the broad-based and sustainable political settlement that is essential for defeating the insurgency in Iraq.

(3) Any specific conditions included in the April 2005 Multi-National Forces-Iraq campaign action plan (referred to in United States Government Accountability Office October 2005 report on Rebuilding Iraq: DOD Reports Should Link Economic, Governance, and Security Indicators to Conditions for Stabilizing Iraq), and any subsequent updates to that campaign plan, that must be met in order to provide for the transition of security responsibility to Iraqi security forces.

(4) To the extent that these conditions are not covered under paragraph (3), the following should also be addressed:

(A) The number of battalions of the Iraqi Armed Forces that must be able to operate independently or to take the lead in counterinsurgency operations and the defense of Iraq's territory.

(B) The number of Iraqi special police units that must be able to operate independently or to take the lead in maintaining law and order and fighting the insurgency.

(C) The number of regular police that must be trained and equipped to maintain law and order.

(D) The ability of Iraq's Federal ministries and provincial and local governments to independently sustain, direct, and coordinate Iraq's security forces.

(5) The criteria to be used to evaluate progress toward meeting such conditions.

(6) A schedule for meeting such conditions, an assessment of the extent to which such conditions have been met, information regarding variables that could alter that schedule, and the reasons for any subsequent changes to that schedule.

(7) A campaign plan with estimated dates for the phased redeployment of the United States Armed Forces from Iraq as each condition is met, with the understanding that unexpected contingencies may arise.
Now, I support her, but I didn't buy her earlier moves on the war. So while the Levin Amendment isn't everything I'd hoped it would be, it is a great improvement for Cantwell and many other Democrats. They are on record for holding this administration accountable. While some of the language might have been changed had they actually been in the majority, this represents an important step forward for the party and for Cantwell specifically.

It doesn't have the hard timeline that I think is necessary to actually get out. I would have preferred her (and a majority of my party) favor Kerry-Feingold. But this is an important step.



Questions Left Unanswered 

The anti 933 people are already asking the right questions about the initiative. Maybe it will dissuade some signature gathering.



Thursday, June 22, 2006

Open Thread 

I'm out fo' the night, but you might want to consider saying something.



I'd Like A Heritage Center 

I used to love heading down to the capitol when I lived in Olympia. Sure a protest was good. And the Legislature was fun to watch. But I liked being able to walk around the campus. But I could always use more history stuff in the capitol. That's definately my favorite proposal in the article.

"I don't think there should be any attempt to salvage the GA Building," said Fred King, summing up the opinions of several other members of the Capitol Campus Design Advisory Committee on Wednesday.

The committee sets standards for construction projects on the Capitol Campus, and it considered several sketches of what could be the biggest project there in 50 years.

The state is evaluating what could be done with the two blocks north of the historic west lawn on campus, where the General Administration Building is next to the Dawley Building, which houses the Hands On Children's Museum.

Architects from the Seattle firm SRG Partnership offered six possibilities, from renovating the 1953 General Administration Building and leaving the surrounding traffic flow unaltered to leveling the existing structures, turning one block of Columbia Street into a pedestrian pathway and constructing new buildings, one of which would descend the nearby bluff to Capitol Lake.

"I'm quite enamored of the concept of the heritage center stepping down to the hill," King said.

Rep. Sam Hunt, D-Olympia, agreed, imagining what the terraced building would look like from Heritage Park along the lake.

"There's nothing wrong with a normal hillside, but - wow," he said.



Small Town News 

That's dandy, although, I'm not sure if "George and Alice Skorczewski enjoy a lifetime on the farm" is actually heplful.



Congrats to Ghana 

They were my number 2 in the metric of teams I root for (my sister lived there for a summer).



Support Our Troops 

Sigh



Wednesday, June 21, 2006

EFF McKenna 

I'd just like to remind y'all that it doesn't really matter who is the Attorney General. Because I'm sure that any Democrat in that position would have gone out of their way to weaken unions.



Midwinter Break 

I'm not a teacher in Oly, but I'd rather have the cash.



So That's How Much a Block Goes For 

$14.87 million for a block in South Lake Union. It's a bit out of my price range. Maybe I'll buy a block in another part of town. A part Paul Allen doesn't feel the need to own in its entirety.



The Party 

Eyes on the prize people. There is a reason Cantwell is popular among Democrats. She is one of us. She is with us on choice. She's a leader, maybe the leader in the Senate, on the environment. She's with us on protecting the Constitution. And she's even coming around on the war.

This week, she took to the Senate floor to articulate her view of what should come next in Iraq. She called for appointment of a special envoy to Iraq to promote regional diplomacy. She suggested that two former presidents, Bill Clinton and George H.W. Bush, would be suitable candidates for the job.

She also called for the convening of a summit of U.S. allies, Iraq's neighbors and the United Nations to work toward a plan for guaranteeing regional security, protecting Iraq's borders, building the country's security forces and reviving reconstruction efforts.

"We have to get about the larger task of getting more international support," Cantwell said in an interview. "Now that there is a government formed, there is an opportunity to put pressure" on other nations, including Turkey and members of the Arab League, to step in, she said.



Early Money is Like Yeast 

Hopefully it will help raise the dough for Darcy Burner.



So, there was a bit of a row before last night's podcast. I'm getting ready and enjoying a burger and Gavin comes up to me and says "We're going to be doing a podcast here, and you're going to have to move." I figure, nobody's that big of a dick (not even that big of a Mac person) so he must be joking. So I give him the middle finger and a smile and go back to eating.

But noooo(ooooo)! Now he gives me the run around and it's all bullshit. Oh, well we need someone who speaks more. Well I speak more than Molly. And you're replacing me with Lee and Switzerblog. Well we want to mix it up. Well, I'm the only regular who misses some of the podcasts. But Molly doesn't hardly talk. Well we want to keep at least one woman. But Will scares off women.

Anyway, I'll admit I was an asshole too (I respond to asshole with bigger asshole, see this post and the one on cities). Anyway, eventually he did decide to have it a 7 person podcast , and I was (as always) brilliant. So my advice is to write him a letter and tell him what a jackass he is (go through the webpage if you can stand his crush on LJ, who's not going to fuck you Gavin).


This really was inappropriate to make public, and Gavin, I appologize. Everyone else, seriously, check out the podcast.



Tuesday, June 20, 2006

Passports 

It won't happen but good on Gregoire and Campbell.



"Warrior Ethic" 

Ha!



I Don't Have Grandchildren 

So why should I vote against I-933?



And Just the Other Day 

I was saying nice things about Governor Gregoire. Sigh.



Drinking Liberally 

At the Montlake Ale House tonight. Come for the booze, stay for the news.



Monday, June 19, 2006

Horvitz Newspapers 

The KC Journal is for sale.



The World Cup and Literature 

So in the complex (and as I've explained retarded) metric that I decide rooting interest beyond "USA good! England Sux!" is that I generally support democratic countries over non democratic countries. But I still hold a grudge. So even though Argentina has greatly improved since the Peronists and the successive Juntas, I'd still cheer for more longstanding democracies (in this case the Netherlands, who I'm cheering for more because of the cartoon insanity, not that it matters). But, the horror in Argentina did lead to some of the best works by one of my favorite authors.

And it produced my favorite short story, Graffiti. It's short; the version in my translation of We Love Glenda So Much is only 6 pages (I know, tough to believe I'd tend toward the shorter stories). The story takes place in Argentina (not named, but that's where it takes place). And it's told in the second person! Without giving it away (because I know, you'll run out and buy an out of print work on my say so) the story deals with communication in a repressive society. How even innocent acts can have consequences. How innocent drawings are as bad as political art in a repressive society.

Anyway, re-reading Graffiti, and Press Clippings (about a victim of torture and how people in far off places are unable to help) from the same collection (and Stories I Tell Myself, but that's not political) for the first time since my country became an object of torture, it really hit home in another way. Less abstract. I can see where my country is heading and it's horrid. We aren't there yet, of course, and we still have time to turn the ship of state around. But man, do I wish the were more heady and less real.



If Only 

We'd have done what the Republicans pretended they would have done if they had a majority in the leg. Then we'd have a massive surplus.



Dictatorfest 

I love it.



I can see Clearly out one eye 

Hey, Goldstone, you bald freak, nice radio show (or so I've been told, I only heard part of the third hour due to a graduation party). But I wanted to comment on my favorite advertiser (not in that hour, a few times in the last show, and a regular for 710).

I'm talking, of course, about the LASIK eye surgery people who quote you a price per eye. As if I only need the left done. "You know doc, I really only use the left. I figure I can turn my head if I want to see the blurry thing to my right." Man alive, the people at KIRO must think Goldy's listeners are insane.

Of course, AM 1090 had a lot of loser ads in the beginning too. But they've been able to also attract ads from the likes of the Rad Dyke Plumber and Seattle Laptop. And while they still have some loser ads at least they've stopped selling Viagra when I'm listening. And I don't think they've ever had an ad that insulted my intelligence quite as much as the one eye only please surgery.



Gregoire on Al Franken 

She was quite good. Is there anywhere on the web I can get a link?



Cathy McMoron is a Disease 

And Peter Goldmark is the cure.

Note to Eastern Washington: We at the Washington State Political Report care about you. And it would help a lot if you would elect Congressmen with some common intelligence.



Sunday, June 18, 2006

Sorry 'Bout the Light Posting 

I was at a family member's high school graduation. Very nice, but one thing that struck me was they had a list of what people are doing. Now it's "based on the surveys returned by seniors" so it's a bit self-selecting. But usually the military folks are more proud of that. Anyway, here are the answers:

Attend a 4 year college or University...57%
Attend a 2 year college.................26%
Vocational/Technical College............2%
Vocational Training.....................3%
Full Time Employment....................3%
Military................................0%
Other/Undecided/Travel/.................9%

Now, I suspect that you can figure out that this was a well off suburban school. But I graduated from the same school and I can remember during a period of peace and prosperity having many people I knew go into the military. It certainly wasn't the majority, but it was more than 0%. Certainly that they had the question reflects past years. I'd expect it to be down (despite not knowing what it was when I graduated) but less than that. It's just one more thing Bush is doing to the military.



Boo Hoo Hoo 

The churches who weren't concerned with lies until it cost them were of course committing a sin of omission at the time. Now that their sinning didn't work out, they're self righteous. Oh, it wasn't us, it was the guy we paid.

I'm kidding, of course. They committed a sin of commission, lying from the pulpit. On the anti-gay rights referendum, the right wing churches were on the side of sin.



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