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Monday, October 16, 2006

Morning News

posted by on October 16 at 8:28 AM

Cut and Run: Republicans give up on some swing state races and shift funding to others, making Tennessee and Missouri the new Ohio.

Stay the course: US pursues “financial isolation” against Iran and North Korea, China starts trade sanctions.

“Islamo fascists”: UK debates whether a Muslism public school teacher should be fired for wearing the veil.

Weapon of Mass Destruction: As AIDS medication improves, harsh stigma is the new untreatable disease.

Freedom-loving: After huge anti-French protest in Turkey, Jacques Chriac apologizes for proposed French law banning denial of Turkish genocide against Armenians. Turkey continues living in denial.

Go it alone: West coast drivers much more likely to carpool than East coasters.

Smoke ‘em Out: New York’s iconic CBGB closes. Millions of screen-printed CBGB hipster shirts now precious antiques.

Bring them on: Mayor Nickels says “no new Viaduct” despite Seattle Times poll showing voters hate his tunnel option.

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Tad Widby, the carpool sage, is a off the mark, the hook, you choose.

"Something different is happening in the West,'' said Tad Widby, project manager for 511 Rideshare.

Yeah, increased self-congratulatory remarks.

"People of Hispanic origin tend to use carpooling more than others.''

Uh-huh, Latinos can always be heard discussing Global Warming and Oil Reserves.

Posted by Unreal | October 16, 2006 8:55 AM

More news The Stranger doesn't want you to use ... The Ryan Blethen Times finally gets it right:

While there is a compelling reason for change in Congress, the case to replace Congressman Dave Reichert in the 8th District has not been made.

The Auburn Republican deserves re-election. The former King County sheriff has an impressive record of public service and has shown a conscience-driven independent streak that reflects his moderate district. For starters, he refused to play along with his party on the atrocious Terri Schiavo spectacle. He also opposes drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, a key part of President Bush's energy policy.

Two years ago, The Times endorsed his opponent in a race to fill the open seat created by Rep. Jennifer Dunn's retirement. But Reichert has earned our endorsement this time.

He has matured in the job and his voting on complicated issues reflects that. His experience as a first-responder has been a strength. As a freshman, he received the rare responsibility of chairing a key homeland-security subcommittee.

Opponent Darcy Burner criticizes him for changing some positions, but Reichert shows a capacity for appreciating nuance and an appetite for seeking answers himself and making up his own mind. After initially opposing stem-cell research, he investigated the issue, visiting researchers at the University of Washington and Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center. He sought answers, found them and changed his position.

He surprised many recently by saying he's not convinced about how much global warming is caused by human action. We are convinced it's a substantial contributing factor.

But Reichert says he's skeptical, so he's investigating. That's a better approach than adopting a ready-made ideology. He dared to be honest with the Sierra Club, whose endorsement he sought unsuccessfully.

That is Reichert's strength. He is a not an ideologue like U.S. Rep. Doc Hastings, the Pasco Republican who does the bidding of House Republican leadership.

On the other hand, it is hard to discern where Burner differs from the Democratic Party line.

The former Microsoft manager is smart and argues effectively for change — if only she were running against President Bush.

Which she is not.

Burner's public-service record pales in comparison to Reichert's, a law-enforcement officer for more than three decades.

As her only public-spirited pursuits, Burner offers youth coaching and a stint on her community club board. Perhaps more troubling is her spotty voting record. She missed either primary or general election votes in four years, starting in 2000.

Burner shifts the blame again, arguing the only voting record that matters is Reichert's. Right, his matters. But voting is a fundamental obligation of every citizen. It matters that she, as an adult, didn't take it seriously.

Still more disappointingly, Burner has run a mean-spirited campaign that would make Republican spinmeister Karl Rove proud. In The Seattle Times/KUOW-FM congressional debate last week, she accused Reichert of "lying." She called him "unprincipled" and "politically crass."

Those charges ring particularly hollow considering one of Burner's approved campaign ads shamelessly obfuscates the truth about Reichert's support of veterans funding. She says he voted to cut funding for veterans services. The truth is, he voted for a budget that increases funding for veterans services but its nonbinding, out-year projections, unlikely to be implemented, look like reductions.

Besides, Reichert coordinated a delegation letter urging increases and bucked his party to support unsuccessfully an amendment to add $54 million for veterans services.

When pressed on this distinction, Burner shifts her blame again to Congress. Reichert is not Congress. He is a congressman, and the former Air Force reservist agrees veterans-services funding should be increased.

Burner understands subtlety. She grasps the distinction. She continues to push the deceptive party line.

We hope something changes in Congress. We want our government to work its way — responsibly and surely — out of Iraq.

But Burner has not made the case she will be a better member of Congress.

We know Reichert will continue his conscience-driven investigation of issues — an approach that fits his moderate, rational district. His goal should be to expand his influence and be a stronger voice for change.

Posted by Mistress Milhous | October 16, 2006 8:56 AM

Fuck you and your "islamo fascist" crap. No one even used that phrase in the article you cite.

Posted by wf | October 16, 2006 9:02 AM

Mistress Milhous: Wrong

Posted by Phenics | October 16, 2006 9:07 AM

Viaduct, tunnel, yadda yadda. I've been thinking...what about a city-wide rollercoaster to solve our transportation needs? Easy to erect, narrow tracks, light cars, loop-de-loops. Sometimes it would zoom just above sidewalk level, at other points it would climb to several stories high. Everyone would want to come to Seattle to ride our rapid rollercoaster system. And it'd make your morning commute pretty fun.

Posted by Gabriel | October 16, 2006 9:14 AM

From the viaduct story: House Speaker Frank Chopp, D-Seattle, said the poll showed only 15 percent of voters supporting a surface-street option, and he urged city officials to reconsider a new viaduct. "The first thing we should do is take the tunnel off the table because it's simply not affordable. Then we should work together to see what kind of elevated highway could be done that is affordable and decent in terms of design," Chopp said.

What's remarkable to me is that Frank Chopp represents the most pro-transit, pro-density district in the entire state and yet he hasn't taken any appreciable heat from environmentalists for his pro-viaduct stance. Well, I have a few cynical psycho-political hypotheses why Chopp has gone unscathed.

But just, we're talking here about building an elevated freeway along a scenic downtown waterfront, which is just about the most anathema proposal imaginable for transit and density supporters (never mind that the new viaduct would be 50% wider than the existing one). It's a bit like a legislator in a liberal district backing a ban against gay marriage and civil unions, or saying we should "stay the course" in Iraq, and nobody really noticing.

Meanwhile, much of the anti-freeway outrage continues to be focused on the tunnel proponents, even though a real consensus has emerged among tunnel proponents that something like the PWC proposal should be the backup plan.

Posted by cressona | October 16, 2006 9:26 AM

Of course Phenics and others will dismiss Mistress Milhous' comment. The Burnerites have already decided that Darcy's political shit doesn't stink and that she can do no wrong.

Meanwhile, pure partisan support has the race polling neck and neck. Instead of what the lefties want you to believe is a wave of support, a Dem once again is trying to squeak out a major race.

And when someone points out the obvious flaws in Burner's run, her supporters insist there are no such thing as flaws in Darcy Burner.

For shame, you close minded scoundrels.

Posted by Gomez | October 16, 2006 9:35 AM

Maybe Chopp isn’t taking heat from transit and density supporters because there really aren’t that many of you. Look at the poll: you’re massively outnumbered!

As for Reichert, do you want the R’s to be in charge in DC? Yes or no. That’s all—save the “is this candidate X better than candidate Y” stuff for 3rd grade civics class.

You either want Hastert, Bush & Co in charge, or you want Pelosi & Co. Period.

Posted by BC | October 16, 2006 10:00 AM


There's a reason Chopp isn't worried about any political heat - the numbers are WAY on his side.

I guess we now know why there was no advisory vote on the various AWV options.

How's it feel to be a 15 percenter?

Posted by Mr. X | October 16, 2006 10:32 AM

BC: Maybe Chopp isn’t taking heat from transit and density supporters because there really aren’t that many of you. Look at the poll: you’re massively outnumbered!

Well, I sure wouldn't say we're massively outnumbered. I'm not even sure I'd say we're outnumbered, although we probably are. The chief problem seems to be that we're always finding ways to divide ourselves so we can ensure that we effectively are outnumbered.

Posted by cressona | October 16, 2006 10:37 AM

@8 - i read your comment really fast and to my darting eye i thought you said Pepsi Co.

Posted by charles | October 16, 2006 10:43 AM

Personally, I'm very pro-transit and pro-density. However, I'm very uncomfortable with surface option because I don't believe in the rosy predictions of a mass exodus from car transportation in the absence of an efficent (right of way) mass transportation option running through the viaduct corridor.

Posted by neo-realist | October 16, 2006 10:48 AM

Why the fuck would I trust an editorial written by the Times? Everything written by them is tainted by the Blethen family greed over the estate tax.

That's not to say I trust editorials written by the Stranger or PI either. But who does the Times think it's fooling with this POS?

Posted by the dead hand | October 16, 2006 11:01 AM

As for Reichert, do you want the R’s to be in charge in DC? Yes or no. That’s all—save the “is this candidate X better than candidate Y” stuff for 3rd grade civics class.

The D's problem is that they assume that everyone thinks like this, see things in terms of who controls Congress.

I've got news for you: Most don't care, about Congress and Bush et al the way you do. They see things the same way as your proverbial 3rd grade civics class.

So you'd BETTER give them a reason to support Burner that has something to do with HER credibility, not Reichert's, not Bush's, not the GOP's. Or they're gonna fuck off and vote for the incumbent.

Posted by Gomez | October 16, 2006 11:03 AM

The Surface Option -- Let's call it what it is: The Drainage Field.

Posted by Lloyd Clydesdale | October 16, 2006 11:33 AM

Why is the Times so willing to accept the Reichert campaign spin that made his initial statement that he didn't think global warming EXISTED (not that he wasn't sure it was caused by humans, as the campaign claims)? Reichert is a dope, a low-wattage foot-soldier for the Republican Lemming Patrol. A vote for Dave is a vote for George Bush's program, end of story.

Posted by Fnarf | October 16, 2006 12:14 PM

Response to gomez @ 7

For myself, it is not so much that Burner's shit doesn't stink, its just the load of offal spread around by the neo-cons for the last 35 or so years makes Burner's load smell like roses. Reichert has tried his best to run with the neo-cons and keeps on insisting that that is a good thing. Agreeing with neo-cons is not a good thing and their stink has rubbed off on him.

Basically, I categorically dismiss all repubs who held or hold office during the Nixon, Reagan, GH Bush and GW BUSH regimes. Especially the GW regime. They have fucked up everything and deserve such an off-handed dismissal and their subsequent removal from office. I like to think I am not the only one, but hell, time will tell, won’t it?

Posted by Phenics | October 16, 2006 12:48 PM

I've stopped using the Viaduct, just to see how much of an inconvenience it is to me personally and since I'm just one car, it's really not that big of a deal.

What if we had a day - like Monday the 30th - where none of us used the Viaduct?
Let's see what kind of an impact is has. Some of us will decide to use transit, walk, or ride our bikes. Others will avoid the Viaduct.

They close it for weekend projects, why not close it during the week & see where we need to route traffic more effectively before something permanent is in place?

Posted by maria | October 16, 2006 1:04 PM

Give it a rest, Cressona, you're definitely a 15 percenter. Heck, even George has better poll numbers!

Posted by Will in Seattle | October 16, 2006 1:40 PM

So what was traffic like when the viaduct was shut down after the quake? Did all hell break loose or did people figure out other ways to get around? With either a tunnel or replacement, we're going to have to go without the viaduct for several years.

Posted by keshmeshi | October 16, 2006 1:51 PM

Is it true, Phenics, that 'neo-con' is the hip, hep, cool, progressive way of saying 'dirty Jew?' If that's true, and neo-cons by definition were liberal-secular Jews who had been mugged by the reality of the failure of liberalism, then Reichert probably isn't one. (Although finding long-forgotten Jewish ancestors is now high Democrat fashion -- Yentl Rodham Clinton, for example -- Reichert isn't a high Democrat, so he can't play that game, either.)

And Reagan? Your ignorance is showing. Read, learn, and then afflict us with an informed opinion. Your uninformed opinions are ridiculous & risible.

Posted by Mistress Pelosi | October 16, 2006 2:31 PM

Yes, the estate tax is Frank Ahab Blethen's white whale. So the Times endorsement of Reichert may indeed be monomania-as-usual. Or, maybe, Occam's Razor cuts closer to the truth: The Times is uncharacteristically admitting the obvious ... Dave Reichert is the better man.

Posted by mistress ryan blethen | October 16, 2006 2:50 PM

And again, Phenics, most 8th voters don't care or don't see what that has to do with Burner being better than Reichert. They just don't. If the casual voters don't have a reason to like Burner over Reichert, she's going to lose their votes.

Posted by Gomez | October 16, 2006 3:05 PM

"So what was traffic like when the viaduct was shut down after the quake? Did all hell break loose or did people figure out other ways to get around? With either a tunnel or replacement, we're going to have to go without the viaduct for several years.

Posted by keshmeshi - October 16, 2006 01:51 PM

It was, in fact, a total nightmare.

Posted by Mr. X | October 16, 2006 3:36 PM

The neocons' favorite hobby is accusing people who don't like neocons of harboring anti-Semitic views. Their second-favorite hobby is congratulating themselves on the cleverness of repeating the "mugged by reality" line. Chortle, chortle. They don't, on the other hand, much enjoy discussing how they are personally, completely, responsible for the worst foreign affairs debacle in US history. Speaking of risible.

Posted by Fnarf | October 16, 2006 4:49 PM

Gomez, you've made that claim before, that voters in the 8th district "don't see any reason to vote for Darcy Burner." I'm curious what you base that on. Are you regularly doorbelling and phonebanking in the 8th? I am. Are you talking on a daily basis to your neighbors in the 8th District? I am. Do you even live in the 8th District? I do. And my experience has been different from yours - the people I talk to DO see many, many reasons to vote for Darcy Burner, such as her stance on the issues that affect the voters of the 8th District.

Posted by Geni | October 16, 2006 5:48 PM

Mistress Pelosi @ 21

"Dirty Jew" WTF... ever hear of these folks... Dick Cheney, Condi Rice, Donald Rumsfeild? Oh, there are more, (I am sorry say) but if the phrase Neo-Conservative, with the neo-con for short-hand, has you in a flaming loop... I wouldn't want you to hurt yourself after you google those names. (I will give you a hint, in case you search engine is still broken... they are really, really high up in the government. The government of the country The Stranger is located in. Good luck on that search!!!)

Posted by phenics | October 16, 2006 5:52 PM

All I ever from the Darcy Burner campaign is her attacking Reichert and linking him to Bush. And so do the constituents. Even after this salvo of attacks, even with the supposed general discontent with the GOP, she's only neck and neck with him at best. Wouldn't she be leading far and away in polls if she were as real the deal as you say she is?

Posted by Gomez | October 16, 2006 6:19 PM

"They don't, on the other hand, much enjoy discussing how they are personally, completely, responsible for the worst foreign affairs debacle in US history ..." Refresh my malleable memory, 'fnarf;' how did neocons, however defined, cause Yalta or the Bay of Pigs or Carter & Carter's failure in Iran? If the debacle to which you refer is getting mired in the quagmire of Iraq, that one's #4 on my list, but it's movin' on up. Iraq certainly has the potential to get the gold in the Debacle Olympics, but it's not there yet.

Yes, I know the 'mugged by' trope is tired, but it's probably new to uninformed readers (Phenics), who don't know the difference between neocons (Commentary Jews), paleocons (RiceRumsfeldCheney), and cons (Bob Ney & Duke Cunningham.) Have a nice day, 'snarf,' from your #1 fan, Dave Hairspray Reichert.

Posted by Mistress Annie Wildes Travelers Aide Society | October 17, 2006 8:25 AM

Yeah, Mr. Widby, are you doing racial profiles of who's in what car and how many? Sounds risky: Hispanics take over carpool lanes out west! I'm not shopping at Safeway anymore until I know what your agenda is. I don't care how many $10 gift cards you give me.

Posted by See Attle | October 17, 2006 8:44 PM

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