Sunday, July 31, 2005

Jim Moeller, typical ultra-leftist neo-comm, sticks his foot in his mouth... again.

Best known for lying about and subsiquentluy losing his local version of the Human Rights Commission, Jim Moeller proves that stupid is as stupid does.

Tip o' da hat to

Dumb E-mails from Elected Officials

Here's the latest installment in our occasional series of Dumb E-mails from Elected Officials.

Rep. Jim Moeller (D-49) of Vancouver, sent this e-mail to Bob Williams of the Evergreen Freedom Foundation upon receipt of Williams' essay on election reform in the July 2005 issue of Imprimis

Sour grapes Mr. Williams! You are a Republican (or perhaps Libertarian). Your candidate lost. End of story. People aren't being prosecuted because there was no fraud. You and the Republican party went venue shopping hoping you could find a sympathic ear in Eastern Washington for your pleas and what you got was an ear full. Why or why did I not hear you howls of protest of fraud, enhanced ballots, and illegal voting after the presidential election of 2000? Because you[sic] candidate won! Jesus, you are so transparent as to be comical. Move on Mr. Williams or better yet, just move. Sincerely,

Representative Jim Moeller
49th Legislative District
P. O. Box 40600
Olympia, WA 98504-0600

Point of fact: People are being prosecuted for vote fraud, albeit not as many as should be. But what kind of elected official is so eager to offend people that he would use the name "Jesus" in vain in an e-mail and then tell a citizen he disagrees with to "move"? Sheesh.

Send us your examples of Dumb E-mails from Elected Officials anytime.
Posted by
Stefan Sharkansky at 05:26 PM Comments (9) Email This

Longview Daily News blows it: Radical steps necessary to improve elections

At first blush, I was heartened to read the Daily News's commentary on Ron Sims' whitewashing effort in King County. But then I got to this line:

"It seemed another way to deflect political heat over last fall's elections fiasco in the state's most populous county. We were wrong."
It was and you are now. Wrong, that is.

Sims' "task force" was designed to rid him, Sims, of any responsibility for the ongoing debacle of fraud, incompetence, interference and smoke-filled room deal-making that were hallmarks of King County elections.

Full responsibility for that debacle rests with Ron Sims. No amount of smoke and mirrors can change that, and that the Daily News was taken in by that charade is troubling, indeed.

Far more important then anything else Sam Reed or this taskforce has recommended are the steps deliberately left out. More important then moving back the primary... more important then changing the funding and fund-raising rules for incumbents.

Sims', Reed's and the "taskforces" recommendation completely ignore the substantive reforms required to restore voter confidence.

Forget mail only ballots. Forget dog and pony shows like Sims' self-serving pap.

Restoration of voter confidence will require cancellation of ALL current voter registrations, re-registration with proof of citizenship, and legal ID to vote, either at the polls or when requesting an absentee or mail ballot.

Anything else is eyewash... the confusion of motion... with action. And it is highly disappointing that the Daily News doesn't get it.

Radical steps necessary to improve elections
Jul 30, 2005 - 09:03:40 pm PDT

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We never expected much from the independent task force appointed by King County executive Ron Sims to recommend ways to fix that county's broken elections process. It seemed another way to deflect political heat over last fall's elections fiasco in the state's most populous county. We were wrong.
The nonpartisan body of volunteers last week issued a set of no-nonsense recommendations with the potential to greatly improve the elections process both in King County and statewide.
The chief proposal for King County is somewhat radical --- turning over management of the elections division to a "turnaround team" of outside experts. But radical steps would seem appropriate, given the obvious failure of leadership in last fall's botched election. Sims apparently thought so; he immediately embraced the proposal, saying he would begin looking for "the resources to make it happen."

When Republicans are stupid: Susan Hutchison kills any chance for the Senate.

As readers know, I will not be supporting Mike McGavick for Senate because he has some bizarre ideas about the rights of the people of this state.

Added to that list is Susan Hutchison, an attractive candidate on the surface, who felt compelled to commit political hari-kari on John Carlson's KVI Radio talk show (Carlson is on McGavick's Steering Committee, but that didn't mean that Hutchison should have helped John stick her foot in her mouth.)

Hutchison, a long-time anchor for KIRO TV News in Seattle, and a person with high name-familiarity in the crucial Pearce-King-Snohomish areas as a result, was a fully willing participant in the Ron Sims, King County election dog and pony show.

That bespeaks of idiocy. Anyone believing that the Sims election cover-up committee has any substance is an idiot... and I don't want another Patty Murray representing this state in the Senate.

Thanks to

Hutchison ends Senate bid on Carlson Show

Given the lack of grassroots excitement over Safeco CEO Mike McGavick's announcement of a Senate bid, others are trying to decide whether to jump in the race. The Seattle Weekly reports that former KIRO-TV anchor Susan Hutchison has "pollsters in the field checking out her prospects against Cantwell" and says that "her poll shows that Republican voters believe she is a stronger candidate against Cantwell than McGavick".

From my perspective, Hutchison's prospects as a Republican candidate for anything went to zero yesterday as I listened to her on the John Carlson Show defending her work as a member of Ron Sims' Task Force on Elections. She supported all of the task force's recommendations, saying they were adopted "unanimously" and "by consensus". I was hoping that Hutchison would at least distance herself from some of the goofier recommendations or at least present a preference for some alternatives, but her unabashed support of the task force's recommendations came off as just plain ditzy. She couldn't explain the sense of bringing in a turnaround team while letting Dean Logan keep his job; Carlson quoted my blog post and asked for her reaction to my criticism that "the report does not identify the reasons for the loss in trust or the specific acts and failures by the elections section that led to that loss in trust. For example, it could have acknowledged the widespread perception that there were more ballots counted than there were voters." All she said was that they couldn't include every concern that some citizens had. (So they included none of them!) She also had no answers to any of the criticisms that many callers had about all-mail voting, except to say that she believed it would work.

The WA Republican Senate primary should still be considered wide open. I want to be careful to add that I'm not against McGavick, I'm just waiting to hear a more compelling message than I heard the other day. But Hutchison is toast. As her foolish participation in Ron Sims Elections Task Force becomes more widely known in Republican circles, she'll be quickly written off by most party activists. On the other hand, if she's serious about running for office as something other than a Republican, she can probably count on the support of Joni Balter and the pro-vote-fraud lunatic left.

UPDATE: A WAV of Hutchison's interview on the Carlson Show is here. (thanks to Josef). A friendly tip to the McGavick folks -- this audio should pretty much guarantee that Hutchison is not a serious contender in this race.

Posted by Stefan Sharkansky at 10:03 AM Comments (37) Email This

Saturday, July 30, 2005

Man... even Al Sharpton gets it.

Thanks to

With Carl Limbacher and Staff
For the story behind the story...

Friday, July 29, 2005 9:04 a.m. EDT

Sharpton: Stop Blind Support of Dems

Former Democratic presidential candidate Al Sharpton blasted blacks Thursday for what he described as their blind support of the Democratic Party without demanding anything in return.

Sharpton, during his remarks at the National Urban League's annual conference in Washington, noted that his fellow Democrats, including former President Bill Clinton, have taken African-American voters for granted and failed to act in the best interests of the black community.

"The whole network of incarceration (of African-American men) happened under this president and the last president. So it wasn't just George Bush. Bill Clinton - I wish Hillary had hung around - Bill Clinton built a lot of jails and passed the omnibus crime bill," Sharpton said shortly after Sen. Hillary Clinton, D-NY, had addressed the same panel discussion, entitled "The Black Male: Endangered Species or Hope for the Future?"

Sharpton noted that African-American men make up 6 percent of the U.S. population but 44 percent of the nation's prison population.

"And just because Bill can sing "Amazing Grace" well doesn't mean the omnibus crime bill was not a bill that hurt our people," Sharpton told the several hundred people gathered at the Washington Convention Center.

Clinton enjoyed significant African-American support and was affectionately referred to by many in the black community as America's "first black president."

"We must stop allowing people to gain politically from us if they're not reciprocating when dealing and being held accountable," said Sharpton, referring to the allegiance that African-American voters maintain to the Democratic Party.

Sharpton said many politicians who court the black vote "come by and get our votes 'cause they wave at us on Sunday morning while the choir's singing. And we act like that is reaching out."


When Republicans are stupid: GOP can't label its candidates, judge rules

The GOP hierarchy in this state is a group of idiots with blinders firmly on.

Having missed a golden opportunity to stick it to the democrats on the blanket primary issue, the retards running the Party had an omelet delivered all over their collective faces when they stupidly went forward and tried to get Federal Court Judge Thomas Zilly to, in effect, provide the GOP with a copyright on the word "Republican" as it applies to a candidate’s affiliation.

I've always been struck by how much time and energy the state GOP wastes on ticky-tac BS like this.

Imagine how much more impact and influence the GOP would have in this state if they concentrated on what their mission is SUPPOSED to be: electing Republicans.

How about this for a plan: stop working to screw the will of the people of this state. Stop viewing your time in the Party hierarchy as a jumping-off point for higher office... or judgeships... or some other political advantage to be gained by virtue of your "service," and expend all your efforts... all your political time... all the Party's money...


You clowns have wasted millions and earned the enmity of millions more that live in this state... and what do you have to show for it?

Saturday, July 30, 2005 - Page updated at 12:00 AM

GOP can't label its candidates, judge rules

By Eric Pryne
Seattle Times staff reporter

U.S. District Court Judge Thomas Zilly

The state Republican Party yesterday lost a bid to control which candidates can be labeled as Republicans on the ballot this fall.

The GOP had asked U.S. District Court Judge Thomas Zilly to give it that power as part of his final order barring the state from conducting a "top two" primary in September. But Zilly yesterday issued a permanent injunction that didn't include the language the GOP had proposed.

State Republican Chairman Chris Vance said Zilly didn't explicitly reject the party's contention that it can control which candidates use its name. The GOP still could go back to court before primary ballots are mailed, he added.

But Vance said he hadn't talked to his lawyer yet, and he didn't know if that was likely.


Friday, July 29, 2005

When Republicans are stupid: Propaganda in place of reforms

It's a shame that Sam Reed is a Republican, since his desire to aid the democrats in securing illegal votes seems so strident.

What Reed SHOULD do is become a passionate advocate for REAL election reform, instead of the nonsensical pity-pat crap he's BEEN shilling.

And now, he's going to waste $2.5 million trying to get us to swallow this garbage?


Propaganda in place of reforms
Secretary of State Sam Reed is going to blow $2.5 million of the taxpayer's money on advertisements touting last session's vote-fraud-promoting "election reforms" -- "State to spend $2.5M on voter-confidence campaign"

The state awarded a $2.5 million contract to an advertising and public relations firm to restore confidence in the voting process.

Daniels-Brown Communications (More legislative incest?) was awarded the two-year contract to create and produce a voter education campaign for the Secretary of State's Office, according to an announcement.

The campaign is expected to include advertising on television, radio and in newspapers and magazines during the next two election cycles, officials said.

The message will focus on reforms passed this year by the Legislature following major problems in the gubernatorial election last fall. Earlier this month I gave a talk at a Skagit County GOP dinner. I got the most applause when I said we need to recruit somebody other than Sam Reed to run for Secretary of State in 2008. This $2.5 million "confidence restoration" advertising nonsense (as well as this) in place of actual confidence-building reforms is exactly why the public has lost so much confidence in elections and in the Secretary of State.

Posted by
Stefan Sharkansky at 11:08 AM Comments (8) Email This

Sen. Patty Murray: Typical democrat double-talk.

Well, over the last few days, our state's congressional delegation has, apparently, been wasting their time trying to get contingent money for the Alaska Way Viaduct. In this case, the money is contingent upon the failure of I-912, the gas tax repeal, which effectively, means we're not going to see a dime of it.

No matter. In today's example of democrat double-talk, we get this beaut:

"This is a significant victory," said Sen. Patty Murray, a Democrat, adding that the amount was "substantially lower than what we had hoped it to be."

First of all, it's meaningless. I-912 will pass overwhelmingly. Attempting to use this phantom cash as a reason to vote against I-912 is, well, bizarre. Relatively speaking, $220 million is chump change... cab fare relative to the estimated $4 billion (before cost overruns) cost of replacing the Viaduct.

Second, it is NOT a "significant victory," when the amount in question is "substantially lower than what we had hoped it to be."

But then, Murray is famous for lying about her accomplishments... everything from her act of taking credit for keeping VA hospitals open in this state thru her efforts on the multi-billion dollar Boeing tanker lease scandal to now providing us with federal spare change for this multi-billion dollar project.

She is all too typical of the democrat neo-comm's infesting our governmental system.

Friday, July 29, 2005 - Page updated at 12:00 AM

Viaduct money pledged; it may hinge on gas tax

By Alicia Mundy

Seattle Times Washington bureau

House vote to clear longtime impasse on highway bill

In Nation/World: Measure passes House amid some grumbling

WASHINGTON — Washington state wrung a promise of $220 million from Congress to replace the Alaskan Way Viaduct yesterday, but lawmakers warned the money could disappear if voters approve a popular anti-gas-tax initiative this fall.

And the amount contained in the long-term transportation-funding bill being finalized in Congress is about a fifth of the $1 billion Seattle's mayor once requested to help replace the aging viaduct.

Still, the state's congressional delegation celebrated its bipartisan efforts after the money was approved yesterday by the joint House-Senate committee that reconciled competing versions of the bill.

The bill now goes back to the House and Senate for final votes, expected by today.


Wednesday, July 27, 2005

We got hosed on the tribal MOU, and Betty Sue helped to hose us.

Betty Sue, you have no regrets in helping the Cowlitz set up their economic black hole here?

You signed a deal for a 40,000 sq ft casino that immediately ballooned up to 160,000 square feet. You signed a deal that left out a few things... things that the allegedly "envious" counties that also got sucked in by these scam artists wish they now had.

In fact, you signed a basically unenforceable deal and were used... USED by these scammers as a sign of county approval for their efforts.

I just wish you were "man" enough to admit you were wrong, that we were ripped off... that you HELPED get us ripped off and that YOU, PERSONALLY, bear a major responsibility for that. There are so many costs, revenue streams, infrastructure requirements and social costs that you didn't even mention in the MOU that a blind man could see it in a minute.

And yeah, I have a list of items you overlooked. Let me know if you'd like it.

From the Right Corner: I am so completely sick of David Barnett.

I am sick of his efforts to pawn himself off as an “Indian,” when he admits… ADMITS to only having 1/16th Indian blood!

Does that mean that he’ll only get 1/16th the profits that a full blooded Cowlitz (assuming such a thing exists) will receive from this tribal boondoggle?

I am sick of his threats and amateur efforts of intimidation to those who oppose his tribal scam.

I am sick of Barnett, who appears as white as I am, talking about “white man this,” or "white man that," AS IF HE WASN’T A WHITE MAN HIMSELF!

I am sick of his constant, bogus references to tribal poverty, alcoholism and unemployment. HE IS A MULTI-MILLIONAIRE DEVELOPER… WHY HASN’T HE DONE MORE TO ADDRESS THEIR PLIGHT?

They have PROVEN they don’t give a damn about us… why should we give a damn about them?

I am sick… and getting sicker, of the “whoa is me Cowlitz Tribe.” Is it any wonder that NASCAR didn’t want anything to do with him?

Amid casino debate, an olive branch

Wednesday, July 27, 2005
By JEFFREY MIZE, Columbian staff writer

The spokesman for the Cowlitz Tribe extended an olive branch Tuesday to a group that recently formed to defeat the tribe's plans for a casino west of La Center.

David Barnett, a Seattle-area developer and tribal member, met with representatives of Citizens Against Reservation Shopping and promised that tribal officials will carefully consider the group's views.

"We want to be responsible," he told about a dozen people attending the hourlong discussion. "We want this to be responsible development. And we want you to work with us."

But Barnett also made it clear his tribe has no intention of abandoning plans for a 160,000-square-foot casino along the west side of Interstate 5 at Northwest 319th Street.


Why does democrat neo-comm congressman Jim McDermott lie so much?

As writ by a leftist of some renown himself, Joel Connelly in today's PI:

McDermott: An old joke resurfaces during House "district work periods": What's the difference between God and Jim McDermott? God is everywhere. Jim McDermott is everywhere but Seattle.

Our world-traveling congressman-for-life is sighted at home often these days. Is McDermott becoming a key player in regional transportation? Puget Sound? Salmon recovery? Hardly. He is raising money.

"I am fighting a long-running court battle against right-wing Republicans who want to punish me for contributing to the downfall of Newt Gingrich by passing on incriminating information to the media," he wrote last week.

In another missive, McDermott warned of having to pay opponents' legal fees, writing, "This will be as much as $1,000,000."

McDermott is in the eighth year of a civil lawsuit battle with GOP Rep. John Boehner of Ohio. In 1997, as ranking House Ethics Committee Democrat, McD received an illegally taped cell-phone conversation.

House Speaker Gingrich, Boehner and GOP House leaders were plotting to minimize political damage from a $300,000 penalty imposed against Gingrich by the ethics committee. Gingrich had promised not to protest the penalty.

McDermott leaked the tape to The New York Times and The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. Boehner sued for invasion of his privacy. The case has bounced up and down the federal courts. Recently, U.S. District Judge Thomas Hogan ruled for Boehner, giving him $10,000 in statutory damages and $50,000 in punitive damages. Awarding attorneys' fees was held up pending appeal.

With a loyal liberal following, McDermott has taken some liberties with the truth.

He has claimed partial credit for Gingrich's ouster as House speaker. But Gingrich was toppled by an internal Republican revolt after the GOP unexpectedly lost seats in the 1998 election.

McDermott boasts of "passing on incriminating information to the media" and positions himself as a First Amendment defender. Major news organizations are backing his appeal.

But back in '97, McD denied leaking the tape and said he knew not how the Times and Constitution laid hands on it.

He lied, and he has never explained or apologized for it.

Tuesday, July 26, 2005

The Columbian blows it: In Our View: Jams Worsening

The Columbian brings up some interesting points here… and then blows it in their conclusion.

They ask, towards the end of this editorial, “The next logical step in this concern is to wonder, again, why county commissioners would seek to expand the growth plan that was decided last year.”

The answer, of course, is simple. The level of growth for this county doesn’t really give a damn WHAT the commissioners plan for or don’t plan for.

But the reality of the situation, not a particularly difficult concept to grasp, is that the growth factor of 1.5% per year, chosen by last year’s county commissioners is a figure so ludicrous as to defy belief.

In 1990 or so, this county had a population of about 200,000. Here, 15 years latter, we have a population rapidly approaching 400,000.

Does that equate to a growth factor of 1.5%?

The Columbian asks these questions without making any real effort to answer them. The fact is that we have these problems not because of our explosion of population… but because past county commissioners failed to adequately plan for the increase.

And one huge factor in that failure was their past insistence on using growth factors that bore no relation to reality.

Reality. THAT’S what I want the county commissioners should be dealing with. And the REALITY of our situation is that our growth has equated to roughly 90% over the past 15 years… and when one divides 15 years into 90%, one does NOT get “1.5%” as a realistic growth rate.

So, in direct answer to the Columbian’s question is this response: Why? Because our reality should not include the imposition of artificial barriers that have no relation to the reality with which we live.

Applying artificial barriers such as bogus growth factors overburdens our infrastructure (How can an infrastructure plan for 1.5% growth hope to cope with a 5 to 6% REAL growth increase?)and helps to drive up real estate prices like a bolt of lightening in a vacuum… or did the Columbian fail to notice a 25% increase in real estate prices here over the LAST YEAR?

Increases such as those, which clearly combine to make “affordable housing” a pipedream, are not ONLY attributable to increased population, but are exacerbated by the short-sighted and artificially imposed barriers of Growth Management as it has been applied to Clark County.

The responsible position to take is to acknowledge the reality of our 5 to 6% annual county population growth and plan accordingly. Insisting that the county commissioners take the head-in-the-sand approach advocated by a 1.5 percent growth rate in the face of a totally different reality is irresponsible and smacks of ignorance.

Thanks for asking, though.

In Our View: Jams Worsening

Tuesday, July 26, 2005
Columbian editorial writers

The most productive perspective of the growth issue in Clark County is dual, that is, learning from the past and applying that knowledge to the future. A new report from the Southwest Washington Regional Transportation Council provides unsurprising but interesting data about local traffic congestion, and it ought to catch the attention of Clark County commissioners as they ponder a possible expansion of the 2004 growth plan.

The unsurprising part of the 57-page 2004 Congestion Monitoring Report in a nutshell is that traffic jams are much worse than in 2000. But here's where the traffic experts are able to provide enlightening specifics:


Gee... the democrats feelin' the heat?

For decades now, democrats have been ripping off unions, who, in turn, have been ripping off their members.

The result? A steady bleeding... almost of the arterial variety. And that is reflected in a "precipitous" and climbing loss in membership.

Union representation fell from 20 percent of U.S. workers in 1983 to only 12.5 percent last year, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

So... many unions have, or at least are considering, leaving the AFL-CIO.

And the democrats are FEELIN it.

Actually, this news is at LEAST as good as these idjits bringing Dr. Dean/Mr. Hyde on board to run their peculiar version of The Titanic.

Tuesday, July 26, 2005 - Page updated at 12:00 AM

Labor split could hurt Democrats' campaigns

By Seattle Times news services

AFL-CIO President John Sweeney describes the SEIU-Teamsters withdrawal as a "tragedy for working people, because ... a divided movement hurts the hopes of working families for a better life."

State effect uncertain from split of AFL-CIO

WASHINGTON — They are the people who knock on doors in the dead of winter. They collect signatures and pass out literature. And when a candidate needs to assemble a crowd, they are there to fill up an auditorium with energy and enthusiasm.

The foot soldiers of many political campaigns are union workers, and for decades they have been the province of the Democratic Party and the envy of Republicans.

Now, with two of the nation's largest and most powerful unions — the Teamsters and the Service Employees International Union — bolting from the AFL-CIO yesterday and other unions considering such a move, political strategists, politicians and observers say that Democratic candidates may suffer the consequences.

"Our goal is not to divide the labor movement, but to rebuild it," said Andy Stern, president of the 1.8 million-member SEIU.

The leaders of the breakaway faction said they are leaving the AFL-CIO because of what they described as the labor federation's ineffectiveness in stopping the long-term decline in union membership and making unions more relevant to the challenges of the modern workplace.


Monday, July 25, 2005

The Longview Daily News blows it: Blaming illegals is simplistic -- and misguided

I admit I don’t get it.

The politically correct crowd, for example, is attempting to re-label illegal aliens with such catchy little phrases as “undocumented immigrant” and “undocumented alien,” or, as the Daily News puts it this week, “illegal immigrant.”

Once you set about to change a criminal’s title to something LESS “criminal,” you are, in fact, attempting to excuse their criminal conduct.

Here, apparently, the Columbia County GOP Central Committee has fired out a resolution blaming illegal aliens for their conduct and, in many instances, our societal ills resulting from their massive and increasing presence.

In their rambling, dissembled condemnation of the CCRCC’s action, the Daily News then proceeds to verify many of the objections cited by the CCRCC in their resolution. For example, they write:

“Yes, we have serious problems with illegal immigration.

Yes, methamphetamine has reached the point of an epidemic, and much of the drug now comes from Mexico.

And yes, social service agencies and schools are overburdened.”
To any reasonable or prudent individual, these things are reason enough to act…. Reason enough to blame the illegal alien segment of our population that the Daily News advocates for.

And what is the crime for which the CCRCC bears guilt? They use these same reasons… reasons this newspaper has just acknowledged as factual, for advocating strict enforcement of the laws of this country… our laws against illegal aliens… and stem this flow of illegal aliens while reducing our taxes and the admitted burdens these people impose.

The Daily News offers no alternatives to the CCRCC’s resolution for enforcement… just reasons as they see it why the current laws are not enforced.

There is, in the end, only one real solution: enforce the current laws as written. Strengthen those laws by requiring proof of citizenship to attend schools, use state or federal services, get a driver’s license, a job or register to vote.

Enact forfeiture laws against employers who utilize illegal alien labor. Require state and local munincipalities to support federal law enforcement activities by turning over illegal aliens to the federal government... or cut off their federal funding. Set up a federal system to quickly verify Social Security Account Numbers. Retroactively apply new laws that would end the bizarre practice of granting citizenship to those born here illegally.

We CAN make a dent in the illegal alien problem if we take stronger steps to eliminate the incentives illegal aliens have to violate our laws… and the incentive those who employ illegals have to hire them.

Kudos to the Columbia County GOP Central Committee for saying what had to be said. Jeers for the Daily News for their leftist position and lack of alternatives on this growing problem.

Blaming illegals is simplistic -- and misguided

Sometimes, legitimate concerns can lead to wrong-headed responses.

Case in point, the Columbia County Republican central committee's resolution last month blaming illegal immigrants for many of society's ills.

Yes, we have serious problems with illegal immigration.

Yes, methamphetamine has reached the point of an epidemic, and much of the drug now comes from Mexico.

And yes, social service agencies and schools are overburdened.

But to lay all these problems at the feet of illegal immigrants is simplistic and counter-productive.

The call by Columbia County Republicans for elected officials to do something about illegal immigration is proper. The free flow of illegals across our borders is a problem that has not been dealt with effectively for decades.

Democrats and Republicans share in the blame. To ensure a reliable, inexpensive labor force for agricultural businesses, politicians have avoided confronting illegal immigration in a meaningful way. Guest worker programs have been largely ineffective in controlling the borders and threats of increased prices at the consumer level have thwarted meaningful action on illegals.

With threats of terrorism hanging over our heads we need adequate border control, and we aren't getting it.

Meth insinuated its way into our society without help from any other country. Efforts to crack down on domestic labs that produced the drug have been very successful, so suppliers from Mexico have filled that gap. But most illegal immigrants are in no way connected to drugs. They are here, for the most part, to work.

In both employment and drug use, if you were to take away the demand you would take away the problem.

Our social service agencies and schools do struggle at times to provide the level of service we demand and expect but illegal immigrants are only a small part of that problem.

In a story by Courtney Sherwood last week, Bob Tosh of Clatskanie, a delegate to the Oregon Republican convention, pointed to Mexican-sounding names in newspaper articles about crime in defending the resolution. In doing so he was misguided on several levels.

First, those names don't necessarily mean that person is in this country illegally, or even that the person is of Mexican descent. Perpetuating racial stereotypes or fomenting divisiveness is the wrong way to confront our problems with illegal immigration.

We are a country of immigrants, and unfortunately, many of those immigrants faced discrimination upon their arrival, be they from Ireland, Italy, Poland or Mexico.

We must show we have learned from those past mistakes.

Sunday, July 24, 2005

Will wonders never cease: Hillary to SUPPORT Roberts

The question is this: why? What's in it for her?




Senator Hillary Clinton has confided to associates that she intends to vote FOR Bush Supreme Court nominee John Roberts, the DRUDGE REPORT has learned.

Unless some unforeseen development occurs around Roberts, Clinton will throw her support behind confirmation, says a top source.

"Look, we're not thrilled President Bush is in office and gets to make these choices," said a top Hillary source, "but we have to make the best of the situation until the next election!"

With her support of Roberts, Clinton ignores pressure from the reactionary-activist wing of the Democrat party.

"She is simply doing what is right for the country, not MOVEON.ORG," the Clinton insider explained.


Thursday, July 21, 2005

First of all, this Pollard Hilton PR doesn't qualify as news.

Secondly, the city was lying about other local hotels and restaurants "benefiting" (particularly since the Hilton is making exactly zero effort in that regard, as explained below), Thirdly, if the Cowlitz complete their scam, the Pollard Hilton will become a ghost town, relatively speaking and, finally, the taxpayers of Clark County are STILL on the hook for 10's of millions for this unnecessary, unneeded boondoggle.

Local Hilton nears capacity

Thursday, July 21, 2005
By JEFFREY MIZE, Columbian staff writer

The Hilton Vancouver Washington hotel was at or near capacity Wednesday for the second night this week.

Gerry Link, the hotel's general manager, said several small meetings and summer travel were pushing the city-owned hotel toward its 226-room capacity, but he wasn't sure every room would be occupied Wednesday.

"It's a photo finish," Link said late Wednesday afternoon. "You could have that last guy not show."

During the multiyear battle to get the hotel-convention center built, city officials and other project backers predicted it would boost business for Clark County restaurants and stores, as well as for other hotels.

However, Hilton is steering some overflow business to Portland hotels and promoting only Portland restaurants on its Web site.


Democrats prepare for Supreme Court Nomination...

Wednesday, July 20, 2005

Clark County Democrats: Are they lying on purpose?

Here's the latest bit of idiocy from the Clark County Democrats lies, distortion and misinformation blog:

Serving Southwest Washington Democrats with news, events, and information from the Clark County Democratic Central Committee

3 out of 4 Americans agree: Rove must go

A new
ABC News poll out today points out the following:

July 18, 2005 — Just a quarter of Americans think the White House is fully cooperating in the federal investigation of the leak of a CIA operative's identity, a number that's declined sharply since the investigation began. And three-quarters say that
if presidential adviser Karl Rove was responsible for leaking classified information, it should cost him his job.

Skepticism about the administration's cooperation has jumped. As the initial investigation began in September 2003, nearly half the public, 47 percent, believed the White House was fully cooperating. That fell to 39 percent a few weeks later, and it's lower still, 25 percent, in this new ABC News poll.

admin – Mon,
07/18/2005 – 1:28pm
admin's blog – read more

The only problem with this garbage is this: It's not true.

What the POLL SAYS, is that Rove should go IF... IF... he "leaked classified information."

Should Karl Rove Be Fired If He Leaked Classified Information?

........................Yes ..........No

All.................... 75% .......15%

Republicans... 71 ...........17

Independents. 74 ...........17

Democrats ......83 ...........12

Now... and this may stun you.... I AGREE that Rove should be fired IF.... IF.... he leaked CLASSIFIED INFORMATION.

The problem for the Leftist scum howling for Rove's head is, first, they're ideologically driven by hatred for Rove and second, Rove did not LEAK CLASSIFIED INFORMATION.

All that aside, there is no excuse for the scumbag that authored this trash on the local neo-comm website to have kept the FACT that the support for Rove's removal is ONLY there IF HE LEAKED CLASSIFIED INFORMATION out of the article title.

That oversight was deliberate, of course and the end result? Even more proof that the local demo organization is run by a bunch of Leftist neo-comm scum.

It's in the details, gang... the details.

The Columbian blows it: In Our View - Spending Restraints

In keeping with their socialist, there's-no-tax-increase-we-won't-support leanings, The Columbian came out in support of the state supreme court's efforts to strip the power of the people of this state to uphold their will in the form of initiatives.

In supporting this usurptation of the people's power as expressed in this state's constitution, both the Court and the Columbian have given the green light to the legislature to slap an emergency clause on anything THEY (The Columbian and the Legislature) do not believe the people should have a say over.

That flies in the face of the spirit, intent and letter of the law as expressed in the State Constitution. Of course, a little thing like that rarely deters the democrat-controlled Legislature... or the Columbian.

In Our View - Spending Restraints

Wednesday, July 20, 2005
Columbian editorial writers

When this year's Washington state Legislature passed its budget, lawmakers overhauled spending restraints that were dictated by 12-year-old Initiative 601. This sent fiscal conservatives into fits of anger. They responded by trying to force a voter referendum on the overhaul. Last Thursday, the state Supreme Court, voting 6-3, struck down the "Saving I-601" referendum. So, the "R.I.P. 601" lapel stickers that mournful Republicans wore back in April can be worn again.

We understand the ire of those who oppose this year's state spending decisions and lament the demise of I-601. After all, what good is an initiative if it's not observed? But we agree with the court's decision for several reasons.

To begin with, the Legislature this year imposed an emergency clause to allow the overhauling of I-601 spending restraints. Whether that action was wise is for voters, not courts, to decide. Likely affecting that voter decision will be whether the additional revenue was necessary, and whether it will be spent wisely. That's called holding legislators accountable for their actions. We like that system.

But there are many other aspects about I-601 that must be considered. The initiative seems to have outlived its usefulness, having been amended through the years to a current state of toothless irrelevance.


Even more when Republicans are stupid: Tebelius considers entering race

Ahhhh.... Old Diane. Egomaniac extraordinaire, she out-raised everyone in the 8th CD for the primary... and came in a resounding 3rd, behind Reichert and Esser.

Her whole shtick has been about the greater glory of Diane. A power-hungry, step on the bodies to achieve my goals type, Diane has given her all as the Washington GOP National Committee woman... her all for Diane, that is.

I wonder if she'll ever know why she'll never get that Federal judgeship? No matter... she was never about getting Republicans elected (So very few in the state GOP actually are, you know) and was always about what SHE could get out of it.

Think about the MONUMENTAL ego required to actually believe that if you come in 3rd in a congressional primary in your home district... that you could ACTUALLY BELIEVE you could win in a statewide when possessed of the personality of a snake and an incompetent state party to back you!

Tip o' da hat to and the King County Journal.

Tebelius considers entering race
Journal Staff

Diane Tebelius, who has been mentioned as a possible Republican candidate for the U.S. Senate, said Tuesday she will decide ``sooner rather than later'' about running in 2006.

Tebelius, 55, of Bellevue, is a former federal prosecutor and special counsel to the U.S. Senate Budget Committee. She lost in the primary election last year in her bid for the 8th Congressional District seat eventually won by Republican Dave Reichert.

A campaign for the U.S. Senate in 2006 probably would mean vying for the Republican nomination with Mike McGavick, who announced Tuesday he is forming an exploratory committee for a race against Democratic incumbent Maria Cantwell.

``I'm seriously considering entering the race. We have been going around the state and talking to people who are Republicans and business leaders,'' Tebelius said. ``We're getting very favorable response.''

Though many GOP leaders already have endorsed McGavick to challenge Cantwell, Tebelius pointed out that most of those who will decide the Republican nominee are not the party's top officials.

``They are county chairs and people on the state committee,'' she said. ``I'm getting support from them. No one can say it's a done deal.''

From the Right Corner: More democrat hypocrisy looking on the horizon? You bet!

It took Sen. Chuckles Schumer (D-NY) and Sen. Dumber Durbin (D-IL) about 10 seconds to get their pusses on TV, laying out their double standard for the Bush nominee to the Supreme Court, Judge John Roberts of the DC Circuit Court of Appeals.

Chuckles is of particular note. Frequently stated in Washington, D.C. is the well known axiom that the most dangerous place on earth is the area between Chuckles and a camera.

Already quoted as saying he’s going to war over WHOEVER the President chooses, he will additionally now make demands of Judge Roberts that he did not make of ultra-leftist neo-comm Justice R.B. Ginsburg.

If the President had nominated Karl Marx, the neo-comm democrats would have gone to the mattresses… just like they will now.

Chuckles will pose. He will fume. Clowns in his mold, like Kennedy, will cavalierly attack and impugn Judge Robert’s character.

Yup… the battle is joined. To hell with what’s right for America… let’s not pass up this opportunity to increase our demo fundraising while we try to weaken the President further.


When Republicans are stupid: Why Mike McGavick has just lost the election to the US Senate.

The fine folks at have shown where The Great Republican Hope, recently resigned SAFECO CEO Mike McGavick, touted as the front-runner Against MC Cantvotewell, announced his exploratory committee yesterday and lost the election in the process.

The first strike against McGavick is that his campaign, as well as any other statewide campaign in Washington State, is hamstrung by an essentially worthless state party, run by an incompetent lap dog party chair combined with a completely incompetent and self-aggrandizing executive board.

These people couldn't win an election to 6th grade class president, let alone a statewide.

The second strike is that Washington is a deep, dark blue state. That an idiot like Cantwell could have ever won election to the Senate, after electing and re-electing a woman (Murray) described as the fourth dumbest member of Congress, shows how far to the left this state has drifted.

While we've not yet achieved the socialist republic of Oregon status, the ultra-leftists infesting our state's government are doing their best to put us there.

But the third strike was this telling bit of stupidity that leapt out of McGavick's mouth yesterday:

I personally have been voting No on every Referendum that comes along, because I don't think that's how we ought to be governed.

This is obviously an individual who is either unaware of or disagrees with the tenets of the Washington State Constitution, which states thus:


WHERE VESTED. The legislative authority of the state of Washington shall be vested in the legislature, consisting of a senate and house of representatives, which shall be called the legislature of the state of Washington, but the people reserve to themselves the power to propose bills, laws, and to enact or reject the same at the polls, independent of the legislature, and also reserve power,
at their own option, to approve or reject at the polls any act, item, section, or part of any bill, act, or law passed by the legislature.

(a) Initiative: The first power reserved by the people is the initiative

(b) Referendum. The second power reserved by the people is the referendum, and it may be ordered on any act, bill, law, or any part thereof passed by the legislature, except such laws as may be necessary for the immediate preservation of the public peace, health or safety, support of the state government and its existing public institutions.

Either way, this guy is wrong; either way he disrespects the rights of the people of this state and either way, he’s toast.

Rarely has someone so screwed up… even before he starts.

The Seattle Times nails it: Try again to save Washington's primary

I, for one, am sick of the power play on behalf of the parties of this state.

If these clowns want it all their own way, then I believe they should pay all the costs that go with it.

The Zilly decision must be appealed. The 3 main parties in this debacle MUST get the message: You all work FOR the people... and not the other way around.

Wednesday, July 20, 2005 - Page updated at 12:00 AM

Try again to save Washington's primary

WASHINGTON state should appeal a U.S. District Court judge's ruling overturning Washington's new primary.

Judge Thomas S. Zilly leaves more questions than answers in his ruling that deals another blow to Washington voters' sensibility that the primary election belongs to them, not the major parties. Sixty percent of voters approved the new primary last November. Under Initiative 872, the top two vote-getters in a race, regardless of party, would have advanced to the general election. That could mean two Democrats — or a Democrat and a Green Party member — might advance in the most liberal neighborhoods of Seattle, and two Republicans — or maybe a Republican and a Libertarian — in the most conservative rural communities.

Yet, Zilly's ruling seems to ignore that possibility and accepts the major parties' arguments that the so-called top-two primary determines "a party's nominee."

That might be true if the party were guaranteed a spot on the general election ballot — as it was in Washington's popular but defunct blanket primary. The federal courts ruled it unconstitutional because nonparty members could help select the party's nominee.


Tuesday, July 19, 2005

The Columbian blows it: In Our View: Carlson Served Well

That the Columbian believes former State Senator Don Carlson to be a "Scholar. Statesman. Longtime legislator. Moderate Republican. A person who followed his conscience more than his political partisanship." is little more than a measure of how much and how often Carlson's fringe-left positions agreed with the Columbian's more socialist leanings.

There are reasons that Carlson didn't win re-election. Some he admitted to... others he must have known but refused to acknowledge.

Firstly, he was shafted by the WEA. The teacher's union, a wholly-owned democrat subsidiary, dropped him like a bad habit when they smelled the possibility that the loss of his senate seat would reverse Republican control of the senate.

Never mind that he had carried their water like Gunga Din for the entirety of his tenure. Never mind that he was a retired teacher. The opportunity for the WEA to shaft him in return for democrat control of the senate proved irresistible.

Carlson bizarrely seems to think that had he supported the WEA's misfeasance when they ditched their classrooms and their children so they could run their misspelled protest signs around the Capitol building, they would have stuck with him.

Fat chance. That he actually believes that nonsense is a symptom of how out of touch Carlson was with political reality.

Under the guise of "conscience," Carlson shafted his caucus and the people of Washington State by voting with the democrats on the 1999 budget, a betrayal I knew about 3 weeks in advance... his "I made the decision 2 days before the vote" proclamations notwithstanding... a betrayal that cost us $300 MILLION dollars. Oddly, the Columbian neglects to mention that.

His support of "No Choice Royce" and the city council's decision to sue the voters to silence them, his choice of a Kerry supporter as his campaign manager in his last election, his ultra-leftist efforts to provide in-state tuition costs to illegal alien children, a move that is costing the taxpayers millions every year in this state... these moves and others like them had him pegged as a RINO: a Republican in Name Only.

You can only get so far with those kinds of credentials... a reality the Columbian "fails" to mention.

It was a poor choice for Carlson, who was willing to routinely sell out Republican principles in order to remain in office. And in the end, he was betrayed by those he worked for the hardest... just like he betrayed his fellow Republicans and the taxpayers of this state... all in the name of his "conscience."

The Left used him like an old t-shirt. And then they saw a better opportunity to get more use out of someone else, they discarded him like, well.... an old t-shirt.

Carlson only ran as a Republican because there was a democrat incumbent. We all would have been better off if he had waited and ran as a democrat. After all, he acted like one, voted like one, was used like one and trashed like one.

You can just BET that when Republican stalwarts like Benton, Boldt, Mielke and the like finally leave the political realm, if the Columbian focuses on them at all it will be to savage their record and sully their service to the people of this county one final time.

Good bye and good riddance.

In Our View: Carlson Served Well

Tuesday, July 19, 2005
Columbian editorial writers

Scholar. Statesman. Longtime legislator. Moderate Republican. A person who followed his conscience more than his political partisanship.

That capsule description fits Don Carlson, who is leaving Clark County this week to move to Olympia to be closer to other members of his family.

His imprint on Clark County during 43 years here has been substantial and constructive.

He taught and coached at Hudson's Bay and Columbia River high schools. For 12 total years, he served in the Legislature, first as a state representative, then a state senator from the Democratically-inclined 49th district. A close victory by Craig Pridemore last November put him out of office.

Carlson was a forceful voice for education, especially higher education. He served as chairman of the Senate's Higher Education Committee, and chairman in 2004 of the 14-state Western Interstate Commission for Higher Education. He was outspoken and determined to do the right thing, and that sometimes landed him in hot water. For example, in 1999, as a state representative, he voted to support a Democratic Senate budget over a Republican House version. "It was a better budget for higher education, senior citizens, developmentally disabled, and for Southwest Washington," he said. "It was the right thing to do."


The Columbian Nails it: In Our View: Parties vs. People

Like a broken clock, right twice a day, the Columbian stumbled on to this issue and hit it out of the park.

All three parties involved in this nonsense, (R's, d's and libs) have illustrated they could care less about the will of the people of this state. Their continuing interference in our lives and the will we've expressed at the polls of this state indicate that there should be a pox on all their houses.

The R's missed a golden opportunity to stick up for what's right and to join with the people in defeating this sordid effort to exert party control over the political process of this state. Of course, given who's running this right-side of the spectrum Titanic, what do we expect?

In our view: Parties vs. People

Tuesday, July 19, 2005
Columbian editorial writers

The war between Washington voters and the state's political parties continues, with the latest battle being won by the Republicans, Democrats and Libertarians.

The voters, as represented by the state of Washington, the King County elections office and the state Grange, were on the losing side of U.S. District Judge Thomas Zilly's strongly worded decision in Seattle Friday about the way we will vote in our primaries. It might prove to be the decisive legal battle in the war, although we hope that's not the case and that the state sees promise for appealing Zilly's decision.

Zilly outlawed the "top-two" system that voters approved last fall and were to have used in any partisan primary races with at least three candidates, which are mostly in even-numbered years.

So now we're forced to use the so-called "Montana system" that was tried here for the first time in the 2004 primary. Surely you remember that diminution of our role as voters and citizens: We had to select a ballot listing only Republicans, or only Democrats or only Independents, then vote only on that ballot.


Monday, July 18, 2005

Governors whine: Driver's license costs to soar

Tough. Get over it.

Governors: Driver's license costs to soar


Pennsylvania Gov. Edward Rendell speaks during
the closing session at the National Governors Association
annual meeting, Monday, July 18, 2005, in Des Moines,
Iowa. (AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall)

DES MOINES, Iowa -- Fees for a new driver's license could triple. Lines at motor vehicles offices could stretch out the door. Governors warned Monday that states and consumers would bear much of the burden for a terrorism-driven push to turn licenses into a national ID card.

"It's a huge problem," said Democrat Ed Rendell of Pennsylvania. "Trying to make this work, there will be hell to pay." He said it would cost his state "$100 million-plus" to restructure motor vehicle offices to respond to a new federal law called the REAL ID Act.

The law that passed in June as part of an $82 million military spending bill goes beyond an earlier measure that sought to standardize state driver's licenses. By 2008, states must begin to verify whether license applicants are American citizens or legal residents of the United States.
That deadline brought the first question in a closed-door session between governors and federal officials on homeland security Monday at the National Governors Association meeting.


Sunday, July 17, 2005

democrat spew: Ex-Clinton Aide Charges Republicans 'Want to Kill Us'

We all know how irresponsible democrats are when they've got the bit in their mouths.... everything from a treasonous senator deliberately comparing American soldiers to Nazis in his efforts to provide aid and comfort to our enemies to Baghdad Jimmie McDermott to Sen. Big Eddie "Glub Glub" Kennedy thru the DNC chair's despicable antics through these ramblings of a paranoid nut job.

Source: cybercast news service via drudge.

Ex-Clinton Aide Charges Republicans 'Want to Kill Us'

By Jered Ede Correspondent
July 15, 2005

( - Young liberals this week flocked to the nation's capital to hear, among other things, liberal television pundit and Democrat political strategist Paul Begala accuse Republicans of wanting to kill him and his children to preserve tax cuts for the rich.

Begala was featured at the first-ever Campus Progress National Student Conference, which was designed to provide campus liberals with the tools necessary to fight the conservative movement. The event also drew former President Bill Clinton, for whom Begala once worked as an advisor.

A panel discussion entitled "Winning the War of Ideas" centered on topics discussed in the book "What's the Matter with Kansas" by Thomas Frank and detailed the challenges that Democrats face in persuading voters in the American heartland and elsewhere to embrace their agenda and support their candidates.

Begala's presence on the panel created a stir when he declared that Republicans had "done a p***-poor job of defending" the U.S.

Republicans, he said, "want to kill us.

"I was driving past the Pentagon when that plane hit" on Sept. 11, 2001. "I had friends on that plane; this is deadly serious to me," Begala said.


Thursday, July 14, 2005

More democrat hypocrisy: where's the outcry?

How QUICK our local democrats were to condemn Tom Mielke for moving into commissioner district 3 to run for county commissioner.

Brian Wolfe, earstwhile democrat lawyer, publically announces that he will be doing the same thing to run for port commissioner... and how do our neighborhood democrats respond?

With a stunning, earth-shaking, resounding silence.

Wolfe is, after all, a democrat. And when democrats engage in "carpetbagging," why, that's "different."

Daily Roundup

Wednesday, July 13, 2005
from Columbian's wire services


Attorney announces plans to run for port commission

Longtime Vancouver attorney Brian Wolfe says he's going to

sell his home and relocate inside District No. 1 of the Port of Vancouver and run for that district's port commission seat. Wolfe would be a candidate for the position being vacated by Bob Moser, who said earlier this year he would not run for re-election.

Wolfe has been a board member of the Greater Vancouver Chamber of Commerce and Identity Clark County and a founder of the Columbia River Economic Development Council.

Columbian blows the call on Pollard's idiocy: In Our View: Message in Mugs

The Columbian, typically, has their collective face so close to Pollard's behind that a sudden-stop inevitably would lead to some brown transfering to their collective nose.

Pollard came across like a political clown in holding his public snit over a completely unimportant issue that gained this town nothing but increased ridicule amongst government watchers.

The Columbian shares in that idiocy by encouraging those types of antics on the part of those incapable of using more serious, thoughtful approaches to community pride then silencing and insulting critics, both of the city's government and our august fishwrapper.

In Our View: Message in Mugs

Thursday, July 14, 2005
Columbian editorial writers

Rght on, Royce! The celebrated coffee-mug smasher generated some much-needed attention to Vancouver's drive toward independence.

If Vancouver Mayor Royce Pollard had broken Portland coffee mugs only on impulse at the Uptown Village Starbucks on Tuesday, he could be criticized for just throwing a tantrum. But the cup-smashing was premeditated, and it served as a ceremonial affirmation.

For six weeks the mayor had tried in vain to stop the sale of Starbucks' Portland coffee mugs here in "America's Vancouver." His reasoning was as simple as it was predictable: "Vancouver is the fourth-largest city in Washington, and people better start showing a little respect."

More... (If you've got a strong stomach.)

Wednesday, July 13, 2005

Stuart blows the call: We're gonna screw Storedahl

Steve Stuart, who’s made 7/8’s of his campaign money from developers and their allies, must be causing them some level of concern these days.

Stuart, who’s made his bones in several ultra-leftist environmental outfits, has been paid enough to be a wholly-owned developer subsidiary. Democrat State Senator Craig Pridemore, of the yes vote for a budget HE claimed was “balanced on the backs of the poor and the powerless,” has pegged him as a sellout.

But what do his votes show? They show a guy who offers himself for sale, allows himself to be bought and then doesn’t keep the deal!

You’d think these big money guys would pay attention about who they’re REALLY trying to buy.

Storedahl mine expansion denied
Wednesday, July 13, 2005
By ERIN MIDDLEWOOD Columbian staff writer

Clark County commissioners on Tuesday voted 2-1 to deny a request by Kelso-based J.L. Storedahl & Sons to expand its gravel mining operation on the East Fork of the Lewis River.
"The fish win," said David McDonald, an attorney for Friends of the East Fork.

The group, along with Fish First, challenged a county hearings examiner's decision that Storedahl has a grandfathered -- or "nonconforming use" -- right to mine its entire 350-acre property. The groups argued that the mining operations would degrade the river and hurt federally protected salmon and steelhead.

With Commissioner Marc Boldt dissenting, Betty Sue Morris and Steve Stuart voted that Storedahl has a grandfathered right to dig only upon the 71 acres that Storedahl was mining in 1973, the year the county enacted zoning laws that restricted mining.


Vancouver's mayor throws a fit in a bizarre attempt to "gain respect."

It is a sorry state of affairs indeed when the mayor of Vancouver feels compelled to engage in juvenile histrionics in an abortive bid to gain “respect.”

IMHO, as long as Vancouver has a mayor that sued the people of that city to silence their opposition to the Pollard Hilton, it isn’t worthy of respect.

As long as Vancouver is saddled with a jerk for mayor who believes in, and rather stupidly stated during a “state of the city” speech that those who weren’t thrilled with his little dictatorship could hit the road, it isn’t worthy of respect.

And engaging in this public, childish idiocy does nothing for the city and subjects it’s Taliban-style mayor to public ridicule. ("Look at that simple idiot. Can you believe that nonsense?”)

Sadly, it will take a great deal more then breaking a few cups for THIS mayor to gain ANY respect.

Vancouver, Wash., mayor smashes coffee mugs in bid for respect
Jul 13, 9:09 AM EDT

VANCOUVER, Wash. (AP) -- Mayor Royce E. Pollard didn't find what he wanted at one Starbucks, so off he went to another, paid $20 and change for two Portland, Ore., souvenir mugs and smashed them to bits.

Pollard's stunt Tuesday was part of his campaign to get more respect for a city in the dual shadow of its much larger neighbor across the river from Portland and its even larger namesake 250 miles to the north in British Columbia.

After bashing the mugs against each other inside a garbage can by the front door and picking up the few pieces that escaped, Pollard got what he wanted: Starbucks announced the removal of Portland cups from all 15 of its Clark County locations and 13 licensed sites in grocery stores and other outlets.

"We understand the mayor's concern," said Martha Nielsen, Starbucks regional marketing manager in - where else? - Portland.

"Mainly these cups are collectors items," Nielsen said. "People collect them as they travel around the country, but we made the decision to pull the mug. The last thing we want to do is offend anyone."

Pollard started steaming six weeks ago when he got a call from a business operator, Arch Miller, who noticed some Portland mugs on display at the Starbucks in Garrison Square.


Monday, July 11, 2005

The Columbian Blows It: In Our View: Gouging the Forest

Usually, when the first premise of a position is wrong, then most everything that follows from that premise is wrong.

Here, the Columbian lies when they start their rant with this little vignette:

“As if the prospect of a casino being built in the gorge is not offensive enough,“

You see, this tips their hand. These clowns are so blinded by their frequently bizarre biases that their judgment must be called into serious question.

There is NOTHING “offensive” about building a casino in the Gorge, particularly when it’s built within the urban growth boundary of a community HAMMERED by the unconstitutional tenets and application of the Gorge Scenic Act.

We’re talking about dirt, here, people. Not Mecca. Not the Vatican. Not the Lincoln Memorial. The Gorge is a PLACE. Not hallowed ground like the Gettysburg Civil War Cemetery.

There is no “reason” utilized to support this propaganda. Tens of thousands of acres were wrongfully set aside due to the cataclysmic even known as the Mt. St. Helens Eruption. These people have a legal right to mine, they should be allowed to mine with adequate safeguards and if the Columbian doesn’t like it, they can close.

Monday, July 11, 2005
Columbian editorial writers

As if the prospect of a casino being built in the gorge is not offensive enough, now we hear about the prospect of a copper mine being gouged out of the Gifford Pinchot National Forest, just a few miles north of the Mount St. Helens National Volcanic Monument.

This idea produces more red flags than May Day in Moscow.

As The Columbian's Erik Robinson reported recently, Spokane-based Idaho General Mines Inc. is seeking permission from the feds to conduct exploratory mining near Goat Mountain, which is near the edge of the volcano's 1980 blast zone. We can't think of a worse idea for land use in that northwest corner of Skamania County.

Granted, mining is not new to the Gifford Pinchot National Forest. Old mining claims in the Goat Mountain area kept it from being included in the national volcanic monument. We further concede that there might be abundant copper in the area, and we acknowledge that the price of copper has more than doubled on the global market in less than three years.


Why the gas tax was DOA

The following is my preliminary report on the basis for the success on the I-912 (Gas Tax Repeal) effort. While the contents may not be, in their entirety, factually correct, we must all remember that the issue is that the perception is the reality.

Remember… I am but the messenger.

The Number One issue:

Voters rejected a gas tax increase in 2002 of 9 cents per gallon.

Since then, the legislature has ignored that will by increasing gas taxes 14.5 cents per gallon.

This has infuriated a huge block of the center and right.

Voters are increasingly angry that their government ignores their expressed will. Backlashes like this will continue to come with the territory when the government insists on what amounts to flipping off the people they would govern.

The people want to know: “What part of NO don’t you people understand?”

When combined with the gutting of I-601, this is a recipe for rage on the part of the people of this state and, in the end all the Legislature has accomplished is to strengthen Tim Eyman, et al, in their shadow government efforts.

Number Two Issue:

The use of the “Emergency Clause” was inexcusable and uncalled for. It is clearly seen as a Legislative ploy to keep the people from having a direct voice in their government because of the now clear fact that the people did NOT want a gas tax increase, particularly without their say so.

Because of the "contingencies" contained within the bill, specifically the reapportionment in the event the voters refuse to increase local taxes needed to complete the as yet undecided projects, I believe that the emergency clause was used improperly (and arrogantly). Even though an audit provision was in the bill, there are no real teeth in that process. Again, how “unsafe” are some of these projects since the State could reprioritize the funds if the contingencies aren’t met? To me, it says that the politicians are only using the word “safety” for news sound bites and not because they really mean it.

Do you know when and why the State stopped putting the amount of tax on the pump? I think they should restore it. The people should be able to see how much goes to the government. It also reminds them that they need to keep an eye on how well that money is spent. At our current tax rate, we are now at 31 cents a gallon, State, and 18.4 cents a gallon, Federal – 49.4 cents a gallon. At 2.3999 a gallon, that is a 20.6% tax on fuel. Once we reach 37.5 cents, we’ll be paying over 24% tax per gallon (including federal).

The current 23 cents is allocated as such:

State 10.96 cents 47.6%
Ferries 1.08 cents 4.7%
TIB 3.04 cents 13.2%
CRA 1.03 cents 4.5%
Counties 4.42 cents 19.2%
Cities 2.46 cents 10.7%

Boy, I missed SB-5969. The worst part is that it was virtually unanimous in both houses. Cities and counties receive 29.9% of the gas (23 cent) tax revenue. How much of that is affected by this bill?

For funds distributed to unincorporated cities and towns, this whole section was gutted: " be used exclusively for: The construction, improvement, chip sealing, seal-coating, and repair for arterial highways and city streets as those terms are defined in RCW 46.04.030 and 46.04.120; the maintenance of arterial highways and city streets for those cities with a population of less than fifteen thousand; or the payment of any municipal indebtedness which may be incurred in the construction, improvement, chip sealing, seal-coating, and repair of arterial highways and city streets; ..."

It would seem to me to be a violation of the 18th amendment since the money, in effect, was not distributed solely for “roads” as defined in the Constitution. But it won’t be overturned without a lawsuit.

The new tax has 1 cent going to local governments – $602 million. I wonder how much of this money is affected by SB-5969?

Number Three Issue:

Voters are convinced that government wastes money. As one wrote:

“Now, I would be happy if the same crowd did a ballot initiative for a regional gas tax to fix 520, and expand I5. I would be MORE than happy to pay for a targeted bill WITHOUT:

Prevailing wage

public arts funding in it

more public transit dollars in it

a third going to pushing EIS paperwork

sales tax on the materials used in the projects

And if we could get this done right, I would pay yet AGAIN to improve 405, and then maybe, just maybe the Viaduct (though my dreams of it falling upon Ron Sims in an earthquake would then be crushed--pun intended).

Posted by dano at July 7, 2005 01:26 AM”

Number Four Issue:

The perception, right or wrong, that the gas tax money is not used entirely for road construction.

Costs associated with construction, including the economic slight of hand involved in shifting gas tax funds to the general fund (Assuming $8.5 Billion for construction, around $600 million of that goes to the general fund in the form of the sales tax) combined with the following breakout of the funds distribution:

Under RCW 46.68.090, only 44.387% of the fuel tax will actually go towards "Highway Purposes". 2.3283% goes towards Ferries, 10.6961% gets distributed to Cities and Towns based on population (and thanks to SBS 5969, it's no longer required to go towards transportation), 19.2287% goes to the counties with no provisions that it be used for transportation.

Of the 8+ billion in this tax package, 4 billion will go to pay back loans (bonds), leaving 4 billion for the actual construction. Of that, a large amount will actually slide into the general fund through sales tax on construction materials.

An even larger amount will be shunted off for environmental mitigation. How much will actually be left over for any real steel and concrete?

Reduce the environmental mitigation.

Eliminate sales tax on construction materials.

Do everything possible to maximize the money going to steel and concrete.

Under these conditions, I don't have an issue with extra taxes. Over the last 6 years, the legislature has not done anything to meet these conditions. In the end, they just increased the tax.

I did the numbers off the top of my head. If you go to Page 4 is where I'm getting my numbers.

Actually, the new tax package is planned to raise almost 12.5 billion over 16 years. Almost 4 billion will go to pay off the bonds, leaving 8.5 billion for the rest. The gas tax itself is expected to raise 5.5 billion over 16 years.

According to the State, about 2.3 billion will go to ferries, rail, local government, fish, noise barriers and a few other odds and ends. 757 million is allocated to bridge replacement and safety projects. Roughly 5.5 billion goes to roads and congestion relief. 2.5 billion go to the viaduct and 520, which are basically safety replacements not necessarily additional capacity.

I-405 and projects specifically designated for congestion relief amounts to 2.9 billion.

The new tax has 1 cent going to local governments – $602 million. I wonder how much of this money is affected by SB-5969?

I think we could expect to spend upwards of 340 million in sales tax (4.4 billion * 8.2%). That's enough to fund almost all the bridge replacements or the saftey projects AND Seismic retrofit of bridges.

The plan states that the money for I405 will combine with our "nickel" tax of just two years ago to complete the projects early. What can we expect of the state in a few years? Will they be low on money again and need to raise taxes even more?

After the mismanagement, blown promises and huge cost overruns of ST and the monorail, we need to have more than empty promises.

This money is not being spent wisely. Get a better handle on that first and then we'll feel better about paying more.

Thus, in the minds of many, this amounts to bait and switch.

Number Five Issue:

This gas tax doesn't really do anything, in and of itself, to fix the viaduct or 520. If the people in the region do not vote for an additional tax package by 2007 to fund the balance, the money allocated could be used on other projects.

Thus, the idea that it is for the viaduct and 520 carries very little weight.

Number Six Issue:

Gregoire campaigned against a non-voter approved gas tax increase during her campaign. She then signs into law the very thing she claimed to oppose during her campaign.

Number Seven Issue:

The perception of the following:

The utter lack of REAL accountability in how it gets done.

The ferry system under the WADOT cannot give an accurate accounting of where the fares go;

Those in the RTA district already pay $50.00 per year/vehicle registered for people to ride heavy rail at a cost of over $60,000/yr. per head;

This additional gas tax throws another 800 million into the black hole called Sound Transit;

WADOT is not audited by any agency WITH THE TEETH to correct it;

Just what part of NO does Olympia not understand?

Number Eight Issue:

That no project is actually “funded.”

I would be more inclined to support this if there was actually a PLAN to replace the viaduct. But no, they just dedicated 2+ billion for a project that does not even exist yet.

Also, the viaduct is a Seattle issue. Y'all seem to love financing multi-billion dollar boondoggles - so you do it! Why should Spokane have to help?

Anger is a deep well to act from. And these people perceive that their government is ignoring them and fiscally abusing them in the process.

With the success of this effort, I can expect to see many more to follow.