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Wednesday, September 14, 2005

Nice Try, Robert.

Posted by on September 14 at 10:59 AM

Robert Jamieson wrote a column yesterday attacking the Stranger. He accused us of “flip-flopping” on the monorailgoing from cheerleaders to critics and then back to cheerleaders.

The flip-flopping editors of The Stranger — they became the monorail’s biggest pompom squad. The hip alternative weekly got a reality check, and a brief change of heart, when the P-I revealed that a single 14-mile line of the monorail network would cost $11 billion. Dude, the paper quickly reverted back to its old cheerleading ways.

Of course our position on the project changed when the $11 billion finance plan came to light. (By the way, the news of the $11 billion finance plan and the damning finance documents were first reported by Erica C. Barnett on our web siteone day before the PI reported its story.)
But as we made clear in the wake of the $11 billion news, we still dug the monorail system, but we couldn’t accept the junk finance plan. We were humbled, and called for a revote. Well, nothing’s changed. We still dig the monorail system. And we still do not dig the finance plan. (A new finance plan is coming tonight, and we’ll see what we think.) We’ve remained consistent on this.

Speaking of consistency, consider this: When Sound Transitwhich we hatedwent belly up, we called for a revote. When the monorailwhich we lovedwent belly up, we called for a revote. If only everybody else in this town were as consistent when considering these two important projects.

And I’m glad Jamieson brought up the concept of “flip-flopping.” Here’s Jamieson on Aug. 27, 2004 defending Christine Gregoire’s record on race relations as a sorority leader in the ’60s. Jamieson wrote:

“Gregoire deserves credit for recognizing her sorority’s backward policy as a student, and for raising the issue with the sorority’s body. She spoke up when many around her maintained echoing silence.”

Just five days later, on Sept. 1, 2004, Jamieson seems to have changed his mind. First he quotes Gregoire: “You know what frustrates me about this?” Gregoire said. “I chose to be the first [in my sorority] to stand up at a national convention and say, ‘Stop it.’ Somehow that’s just dismissed.”

And then Jamison weighs in:

“It is dismissed because the Greek systemthen and nowis considered by outsiders to be an incubator of ignorance. It is dismissed because Gregoire was slow to give the kind of heartfelt response that comes without political calculation. It is dismissed when people perceive you aren’t taking ownership of your past.”

Hey, Robert, how about taking ownership of a column you wrote five days earlier?