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Archives for 11/04/2007 - 11/10/2007

Saturday, November 10, 2007

Flickr Photo of the Day

posted by on November 10 at 4:56 PM

Correct me if I’m wrong, but this might be a sign that somebody has a problem. I think I saw something like this on “Law & Order” once.


Thanks to christopher575 for posting today’s photo. Check out the new Stranger Flickr photo pool. Next week’s issue will feature our very first Flickr pool cover.

the Stranger News Hour. Tonight on KIRO. 710 AM.

posted by on November 10 at 11:30 AM

Tune in The David Goldstein show tonight at 7pm when we go over the election results, which will devolve into an argument about Prop 1 and the news that Gregoire is open to a light rail vote in 2008. Speaking of Gregoire, we’ll probably yell about this news too.

Last night’s FCC hearing

posted by on November 10 at 11:21 AM

posted by news intern Brian Slodysko


The FCC held the last of six nation-wide hearings last night at Seattle’s Town Hall. The hearings were held to gather citizen input on proposed deregulations of airwaves by FCC Chairman Kevin Martin. Deregulation would allow media conglomerates to have rights to a greater number of broadcast frequencies within small regional markets. Essentially, FCC deregulation would cut out local broadcast stations, clearing the path for media giants like Rupert Murdoch’s News Corp., Clear Channel and Tribune Broadcasting to monopolize airwaves.

The proposed rule changes would also permit cross ownership, so that one corporation could own newspaper, radio, and TV in one market.

In this latest round of deregulation attempts, Chairman Kevin Martin has been beaten up by the press for trying to pass a clandestine agenda. The hearings themselves went unannounced until the last date allowed by law. The two democratic members of the five person commission made no qualms in criticizing the Republican majority for trying to railroad the changes through during the tail end of the Bush White House.

I arrived as Democratic commissioner Jonathan Adlestein was riling up the crowd, laying into the three Republican members of the committee for trying to limit publicity for the mandatory citizen input hearings.

When Martin took the podium he fired back, accusing the commission’s two Democrats of dragging their heels in previous stages of the process, delaying the commission’s deliberation process. Martin said the new rules were only keeping in compliance with objectives set by the 1996 Congress. Of course, there is a bill making its way through the current Congress—with bi-partisan support—that would override the FCC’s rule change agenda.


The crowd was downright rude as the commissioners spoke. They cut them off—cheering when the two Democrats spoke and interrupting the Republican chairman with hisses, cat calls, and incoherent yelling. Some guy up front continuously screamed “Fascist” at Martin, which I begrudgingly admit was funny.

I understand their frustration, but unruly remarks from the peanut gallery can only shrink the audience credibility during subsequent testimony.

Later in the evening, I caught up with Mark Allen, President of Washington State Broadcasters Association. The crowd liked Allen as much as they liked Martin. It didn’t phase him. He said the crowd’s unruliness would likely undermine their resonance with the commission. On the subject of deregulation, Allen said corporations simply want to alleviate some of the burden shouldered by over-worked local broadcasters.

When I asked him if large media companies caused the burden he was speaking of, he dodged the question.

Ending on a cynical note he said, “In the end, each local station is just another number for the consumer to choose from.”

The Seattle Times’ Frank Blethen was part of media panel that spoke. Blethen made a good point: despite massive layoffs in newsrooms as a result of conglomeration, most publicly traded media companies continue to maintain at least an 18 percent profit margin.


Citizen testimony got of to a pretty good start with a number of journalists and community radio broadcasters heading up the vanguard. But as the night wore on, discourse devolved into the same old blah, blah, blah.

David Ward testified before the commission introducing himself as Rupert Mordoe, before delivering a “comedy” routine about the need to consolidate the media for the benefit of corporations.

He said he was inspired after seeing a woman perform an act satirically mimicking Hitler at FCC hearings last year.

“I try to get info across by going overboard—like Michael Moore.”

One man told the commission they were “flat out nuts.”

Taking a break from the insanity, I spoke with to Nathaniel James from the Media and Democracy Coalition.

He said even though increasing numbers of people are getting their media content from the Internet, people living in rural areas, or those with low income still rely on radio or TV for their information.

“I don’t know if you saw, there are a lot of people from Indian reservations, or situations with enormous disparity,” he said. “There’s a lot of internet access issues rolled up with that. We don’t even know what the Internet is going to look like in 10 years,” he said, referring to embattled Net Neutrality legislation that would mandate ISPs to treat all content equal.

Catching Up on Two Sex Scandals

posted by on November 10 at 11:16 AM

It’s been all Richard Curtis around these parts. But there are developments in other sex scandals that made national news this year.

First, a jury found Florida state representative Bob Allen guilty of sex solicitation.

A jury Friday convicted state Rep. Bob Allen of soliciting prostitution from an undercover male officer in July.

Allen faces up to 60 days in county jail and a $500 fine for the second-degree misdemeanor. The Merritt Island Republican was accused of peering over a stall in a men’s public park restroom, then agreeing to pay $20 to perform oral sex on Titusville officer Danny Kavanaugh.

The jury deliberated three hours and 20 minutes.

Second, Wendy Cortez, a former prostitute, dishes her frequent client U.S. Senator David Vitter. Nothing about diapers, sadly, but her rather cruel commentary isn’t going to bolster Vitter’s family values cred.

What He Said

posted by on November 10 at 11:00 AM

From the blog Carless in Seattle:

I know the pro-bus, anti-rail Left is going to do their damndest to kill more light rail [in the wake of the Prop 1 vote]—assuming we get a chance to vote on mass transit independently from roads. I beg the pro-bus, anti-rail Left to think twice about this, and here’s why: we rail supporters and mass transit users don’t believe a word of what you’re saying, and if we split, the pro-asphalt crowd will win.

Here’s why we MetroKC and Sound Transit bus riders don’t believe you.

1. We know buses are inefficient and slower than single-passenger vehicles. We daily bus riders are constantly stuck in the traffic created by SOVs, we’ve missed our connecting bus because of that SOV-generated traffic, and we’ve sat gazing numbly out the window as the bus stops every two blocks while SOVs drive right on by.

2. We know that rail works. Anyone who has traveled to a major urban area other than Seattle has seen and experienced effective mass transit, whether it’s the Chicago L or the Paris Metro or even Portland’s partly grade-separated MAX. We want it.

3. We know you can’t create dedicated bus lanes without stealing them from drivers. Kemper Freeman & Co. hated a package that built 186 new lane miles. Just imagine how they’re going to react when you propose to steal 186 existing lane miles for “free-flow lanes crisscrossing the region.”

4. We believe bus advocates want to shaft us with a 2nd-class transit system while they keep driving. Seriously. We bus riders honestly feel that the pro-bus, anti-rail crowd—both Left and Right—are wealthy whites who will never use mass transit, and who want to give us more of the same crappy service we have now.

Today The Stranger Suggests

posted by on November 10 at 11:00 AM


Minus the Bear at Showbox

This year has been good to Seattle’s Minus the Bear. Since Planet of Ice was released in August, the band has played over 50 shows in as many cities and was tagged “buzzworthy” by MTV. For once, MTV got it right. MtB’s new album is an exquisite composition with technical, intricate guitar parts and vivid dynamics that ebb and flow between melodic indie sounds and droning stoner rock. See them while you can—they’re disappearing to Europe for the remainder of the year. (Showbox at the Market, 1426 First Ave, 628-3151. 8 pm, $16 adv/$18 DOS, all ages.)


A Majority of Americans Support Civil Unions

posted by on November 10 at 10:33 AM

A new ABC News poll puts support for same-sex civil unions—marriage in everything but name—at 55%. That sound your hear is a stanky load sliding down Gary Bauer’s trouser leg.

Morning News

posted by on November 10 at 8:44 AM

posted by news intern Brian Slodysko

The FCC didn’t discuss this last night: mainstream media opposes deregulation of cable. Supports deregulation of airwaves.

When you meet someone in a bar: UW student blames boss.

Oklahoma’s a hell of a place: Stern says basketball may not return to Seattle.

Only the good die young: personal assistant bludgeons verbally-abusive boss to death, claims it was because marijuana smoke was repeatedly blown in her face.

Ring salesman: Gregoire and House Democrats want to override Washington Supreme Court, reinstate Eyman tax cap.

Failure: Condi’s management of the State Department

Shift to the Third World: high oil prices sending record amounts of wealth to developing oil-producing countries.

Norman Mailer Dead at 84

posted by on November 10 at 6:18 AM


Here’s Charles McGrath’s obit from The New York Times.

Friday, November 9, 2007

Smith: Kids Eat Freely

posted by on November 9 at 6:02 PM

Not free. Freely, as in openly. I’m about to have dinner at Smith—with the kid. Hope we don’t ruin everything for everybody.

UPDATE: Breaking—must credit Slog. Smith is now serving children. A highly placed source tells me that Smith has been open to kids since Tuesday, but no one knows, and Smith hasn’t advertised their new open-to-kids policies. Which means that my son, who just got his burger, is the very first minor to dine at Smith. Further updates as this important story develops.

UPDATE 2: Smith is open for brunch on the weekends, which makes Smith the perfect after-child-is-molested-after-Sunday-services spot for harried-but-faithful parents.

UPDATE 3: The kid enjoyed his burger, pot de creme, beet salad, and toffee. His dads enjoyed their chow as well as beers and wine—in kid’s presence. World didn’t end, etc. So maybe we can start letting kids into beer gardens in Washington state, huh?

Gov. Gregoire Open to Light Rail Vote in ‘08

posted by on November 9 at 5:33 PM

I managed to get a quick interview with Gov. Christine Gregoire after she testified at the FCC hearings at Town Hall late this afternoon.

Her speech against media consolidation, btw, was great. Warning against concentrated ownership of the airwaves—which she reminded the commission are “public property”—Gregoire got her biggest applause with these two back-to-back Seattle-centric lines: “How will the next great band be able to leave a garage in West Seattle for a worldwide audience? How will photos, or video, documenting injustice be seen widely enough to spark a response?”

(Three cheers for whatever band she’s hep to that’s busting out of—or busted out of?— West Seattle. And the other line I took to be a reference to 1999’s WTO protests.)

I got a brief interview with the governor after her testimony.

I asked Gov. Gregoire for her reaction to yesterday’s District Court decision suspending state rules that direct all pharmacists to make Plan B (emergency contraception) available to women. Gregoire said she was “very disappointed” in the decision, and she’s looking at filing an appeal with the Attorney General. Asked why she was disappointed, she said, “A woman’s right to a lawful prescription should not be subject to the biases and prerogatives of a pharmacist.” She also stressed that the issue was broader than Plan B, saying, for example, that an AIDS victim shouldn’t be prevented from getting medication because the pharmacist might not “agree with [that person’s] lifestyle.”

I asked the governor what she thought about Mayor Nickels’s statement that Seattle should push for a light rail vote in 2008. (Gregoire has made it clear in the past that she did not want light rail to be on the ballot in ‘08—or so I was told repeatedly by the Prop. 1 campaign.)

She said: “I need a better understanding of the vote. Was it ‘No’ to roads? Was it ‘No’ to transit? Was it ‘No’ to the price tag? Should we vote on light rail without roads?”
Does that mean you’re open to a vote on light rail in ‘08? I repeated. “It’s all in play,” she said.

Finally, I asked her why she didn’t endorse the Democratic candidate for King County Prosecutor, Bill Sherman. (Sherman lost this week to the Republican, Dan Satterberg. Gregoire made no endorsement in the high profile-race.) Gregoire’s face lit up as if she was gearing to tell a big joke, and she said: “You want to know why? Ready? He never asked.” I told her that the campaign said they did ask. Gregoire said: “No one asked me.” I asked her if she would have endorsed him, and she said, it’d be “disingenuous to answer that now.” True.

Footnote on the FCC hearings: To the surprise of many in the Seattle audience, Rep. Dave Reichert sent a video taped message where he spoke out against consolidation. There were also taped messages from Rep. Jay Inslee and Sen. Maria Cantwell. Against.

Sound Transit Pays Big Bucks to Halt Development

posted by on November 9 at 5:17 PM

Today, Sound Transit’s board approved a series of monthly $32,000 payments to developer Pryde & Johnson, to halt construction at a property on 67th and Roosevelt. They payments would hold development through 2008 and Sound Transit would also have the option to extend the deal through 2009.

Sound Transit could end up paying nearly a half a million dollars to the developer, but Sound Transit spokesman Bruce Gray says it would still be cheaper than buying out the property after it had been developed.

The crappy QFC which occupies the lot will, presumably, remain open.

Re: Confidential to Spangenthal-Lee

posted by on November 9 at 5:14 PM


Confidential to Spangenthal-Lee

posted by on November 9 at 5:10 PM

cozy fire

Nickels Moves to Shut Down Another Belltown Club

posted by on November 9 at 5:06 PM

This time it’s Ximaica. And, really, wouldn’t we all be better off with another church in Belltown anyway?

Churches—people are safe at church, and the wide selection of places to worship is why people move to Belltown in the first place.

What He Said

posted by on November 9 at 5:00 PM

Will at HorsesAss on Washington state’s douchebag pharmacists

This isn’t about the personal religious beliefs of a pharmacist. This is about enforcing a religious code that governs the behavior of individuals. Women who want to avoid pregnancy use Plan B to avoid having to make the choice of abortion later. But that’s not good enough, apparently.

I have heard stories from women who go to the drug store to get Plan B. They tell me that the pharmacist has told them that they’re a “whore,” or that they need to find Jesus. This isn’t about a pharmacist’s personal beliefs governing their own actions. It’s about their personal beliefs governing yours.

Confidential to Annie Wagner

posted by on November 9 at 4:54 PM



posted by on November 9 at 4:46 PM

I … can’t … take it any longer!!!!!!!! Those of you in the sloggysphere have no idea this has been going on, of course, so, here’s the story:

Jonah likes this term “townhomes.” I notice some of you in the comments naturally revert to “townhouses” when responding to him. This is perfectly understandable.

After all, the use of “home” is any real estate context is pure jargon meant to seduce you into thinking the given piece of property is warm, comfy, inviting—that no matter its price or hideousness you yourself may find yourself calling it “home” someday. This is brainwashing. “Home” should be strictly reserved for that place and only that place where you and your family or roommates place their sleepy heads at night. The correct term for a piece of property, especially one being bought or sold, is HOUSE. Not home. House.

Repeat after me, Dominic and Jonah: Townhouse, townhouse, townhouse!

And NEVER let me see the nasty, insinuating, fake, obnoxious word “townhome” on this blog again.

For the love of god.

A Disastrous End to the STEP HIV Vaccine Trial

posted by on November 9 at 4:45 PM

The news from the (once) most-promising candidate anti-HIV vaccine keeps getting worse.

Back in May I wrote about this entire class of vaccines:

After the failure to produce an infection-blocking vaccine, some groups have taken on a more modest goal: Make a vaccine that triggers a more vigorous counterattack, slowing or preventing the progression to AIDS and reducing the risk of transmission. Like being introduced to a blind date by a guy who mugged you last week, these vaccines give the immune system a memorably nasty reintroduction to the HIV proteins. The most promising vaccines stuff multiple HIV proteins, including less variable internal machinery proteins of the virus, in a cold virus engineered to be harmless. In animal tests and preliminary human trials these vaccines work better than initially expected, both slowing infections and in some cases even blocking initial infections. The results from human trials against wild virus are not complete—one major phase II trial’s results should be out in 2008.

Seattle is host to the NIH-funded HIV vaccines trial unit—the largest anti-HIV vaccine clinical trials unit coordinating trials worldwide. For the STEP trial, testing one of these cold-viruses-carrying-HIV-protein vaccines, three thousand volunteers were recruited worldwide, including 119 gay men in Seattle.

The HIV-negative volunteers were randomized to either receive the experimental vaccine or a placebo. After the three injections, the participants were followed to compare what percentage of the vaccinated versus non-vaccinated got HIV, and how their HIV progressed. Everyone received HIV-avoidance counseling.

Back in September, the STEP trial testing this vaccine was “discontinued [PDF] because the vaccine was not effective.” By this point, all the men randomized to receive the vaccine in Seattle had received all three injections.

This week, more bad news was released:

The current STEP results suggest that those who received the vaccine might have an increased susceptibility to acquiring HIV infection, particularly those volunteers who had higher levels of pre-existing immunity to Ad5 because of prior natural exposure to Ad5. However, there are a number of confounding factors that make it very difficult to draw conclusions about this finding.

In other words, if you’ve had a very common adenovirus cold virus infection in the past, and received the experimental vaccine, you might be more susceptible to HIV infection. Perhaps for the rest of your life.

One criticism of the Adenovirus 5 based vaccines is something known as original antigenic sin. An immune system previously exposed to a wild version of Adenovirus 5 retains a memory of the infection. When exposed to the vaccine, the immune system might simply reactivate against the cold virus proteins rather than the new HIV proteins, and therefore fail to properly protect against HIV. These concerns seemed to be true.

Seattle—young, gay—has hosted many vaccine trials, including several failed HIV vaccines, the Herpes vaccine still undergoing testing and the successful HPV vaccine. Volunteering for any experimental treatment is a deeply altruistic act—risking your health to help those in the future. We owe a debt of gratitude to the STEP volunteers, as well as the people around you who volunteered for the other vaccine trials. Given the disastrous results of this trial will—or should—Seattlites continue to volunteer?

If you were a volunteer for this study, e-mail me at

Flickr Photo of the Day

posted by on November 9 at 4:17 PM

Hey, is that John Roderick hugging comedian Eugene Mirman? I think it is. Who went to neat event People Talking and Singing at Town Hall last night - a benefit for 826 Seattle? Was it good?


Thanks for Flickr-ing, photophonic!

Re: A Matter of Taste

posted by on November 9 at 4:14 PM

Jonah asks what good townhome design looks like. Of course, one man’s trash is another’s treasure. But I enjoy looking at these units going up in the Central District—whether I’m trashed or not.


The jagged and varied roof lines are magnificent. They reflect the classic craftsman homes that dominate the neighborhood, yet have a distinctly modern edge. The buildings are less than half finished—the second row behind these buildings is skeletal—however, the southwest corner is almost completed.


I wonder how much more it costs developers to build interesting roof lines and unique top floors in row townhouses. (In this development, there are actually a few separate buildings with multiple units in each, so it’s less townhomey than others.) It seems that interesting designs like these could be applied to a slew of the low-income developments being constructed around town for only slightly more dough. But if previous thoughtful buildings are an indication, these units will cost a fortune—not necessarily because they cost so much more to build—but because they look like something you’d actually want to live in.

Today in Line Out

posted by on November 9 at 3:28 PM

Tonight in Music: Black Dice, JJ Grey and Mofro, Broken Disco, and more.

Floor Punching and Head Stomping: Jonathan Zwickel’s favorite hardcore dance moves.

Sound Off!: Entries are due next week.

I Hate Loverboy: And Left Coast hates me.

American Genius: Paul Constant’s Jay-Z inspired e-mail debate.

Say Cheese: Ari Spool’s photos of PWRFL Power and Mr. Divisadero.

Today in Music News: Prince continues his hissy fit, Sufjan Stevens gets ready for Xmas, Amy Winehouse’s husband gets arrested, and more.

Another One Bites the Dust: Kim Hayden says goodbye to another Country music legend.

Rock School: Bjork goes back to kindegarten.

And Another One Down: Music downloading sites are dying as often as contry music legends.

Johnny Thunders Where Are You?: Help Terry Miller see the Skyline.

Rock City: Donte links back to Detroit.

Cutting Edge: Tori Amos goes back to her roots and brings the knife with her.

Bilbys in a hat!


Real Men Aren’t Afraid to Suck Straws

posted by on November 9 at 3:13 PM

Or, it seems increasingly, cock.

A study released by a sex researcher in the UK is garnering a lot of sexy headlines—like this one:

One Third of US High School Football Players Have Had Sex with Men

Sociologist Dr. Eric Anderson, studying American men who had played football in high school, said that out of 47 men surveyed, 19 had participated in sexual conduct with others of their gender.

Sexual contact was defined to mean behavior specifically meant to sexually excite others, and ranged from kissing to oral sex. The behavior also ranged from threesomes with one woman and two men present, to encounters involving only two men.


Mmm… football.

Anderson’s sample was small—just 47 straight guys, 19 of whom cheerfully admitted to having messed around with another dude—and all the men had moved from being high school football players to college football cheerleaders. Says Anderson on Salon today

“I’m not trying to say that these men are gay in any way, shape or form,” Anderson says. “That isn’t the point of this. The point is to simply make the point that homophobia is reducing at an unbelievably rapid rate, and this is one of the multiple benefits that come with that…

“I wanted to see what would happen when you take men who used to be football players and you put them in a field with the people they used to make fun of, the cheerleaders. And what I found was that they very quickly undo their homophobia, if they had homophobia. They very quickly change their views about women. And one of the things they do, they very quickly undo the ‘one-drop rule’ of sexuality.”

For the last few decades—ever since gay people started coming out and living openly—the “one-drop rule” has been in force. Any man that messed around with another man, even just once, had to be a fag. Period. But women were able to admit to one or two same-sex crushes and a handful of few same-sex experiences—hell, relationships (LUGs?)—without everyone insisting that they had to be closeted lesbians. And increasingly straight men—real straight men, not messed up closet cases—are insisting that they too can have the odd same-sex experience without being gay.

Not that there’s anything wrong with being gay. But just as not everyone that has straight sex is straight—I had straight sex, for crying out loud—not everyone that has gay sex is gay.

Back to Anderson:

“When we were in high school, you kissed another man, you were a fag, fag, fag, and that was that. You’d get the crap kicked out of you. That is not the case at all anymore.”

Anderson says studies since the ’50s have shown that men have had sex with each other without identifying as gay. “The primary difference here is that in their peer culture, these behaviors aren’t stigmatized anymore, or are considerably less stigmatized,” he says. “The key here is that it doesn’t threaten their heterosexual identity in the peer culture anymore. They can do this now—which really isn’t anything new—but the difference is their teammates don’t go, ‘Oh, you fucking faggot.’”

Judging from my “Savage Love” mail I’d say there are a lot of folks out there that would go, “Oh, you fucking faggot.” The one drop-rule has weakened, it hasn’t been repealed. Every day brings a letter from someone utterly convinced that a straight-identified husband, boyfriend, drinking buddy, etc., who admitted to a same-sex experience simply must be a closeted fag. But I also get letters every day from straight guys who, like Anderson’s football players, cheerfully admit to a same-sex experience or crush and don’t think of themselves as gay and the least bit conflicted about it.

Seeing as we’re moving into a brave new world when straight men can suck dick once or twice in their lives without having to hang a rainbow windsock on their decks (who do you think is booking all those shemale escorts anyway?), hopefully we won’t be seeing many more “news reports” like this one. WCVB in Boston has a list of “10 Drinks a Man Should Never Order.” Because, you know, today you can suck dick without all your friends thinking you’re a fag—but, dude, order a blended drink, or one with too much garnish, or a Jello shot or a cosmo and everyone’s going think you’re a total homo.

My favorite drinking “don’t” for insecure straight men:

Anything that requires a straw. It’s hard to look coy with a straw, it’s nearly impossible to look macho or hot when using one.

Yeah, everyone is going to think you’re gay if you put that straw in your mouth. But sucking your teammate’s cock during a boy-girl-boy threesome? Nothing gay about that, dude. Party on.

One More Column for Susan Paynter to Write

posted by on November 9 at 2:58 PM

Last March, Susan Paynter, who has since retired from her longtime gig as a PI columnist, wrote this:

I wanted to ask Rossi about all of that and more this week. As governor, where would he stand on issues such as domestic partnerships? Same-sex civil unions? Unfettered pharmacy access to the Plan B morning-after pill? Even the record number of appointments of women to key state posts that Gov. Chris Gregoire has made? Three times I called his office at Forward Washington. Eventually an answer came. “He hasn’t made the decision to run,” Forward Washington’s Sarah Dorn told me. “When he does make that decision — and I’m not sure when he will — he’ll be happy to discuss it.”

Rossi is now officially running for governor, and given yesterday’s District Court decision suspending the state pharmacy board’s rule that Plan B had to be made available to customers, Rossi’s opinion about Plan B has is pretty relevant.

Rossi still won’t return my calls or e-mails (I guess he didn’t like that I asked him about S-CHIP). So, please Susan Paynter, come out of retirement for one more column. See if Rossi is happy to answer your questions about Plan B like he told you he’d be.

During his time as a Senator in Olympia, Rossi voted to fund abstinence-only education programs; voted to allow insurance companies to deny women coverage for birth control pills; and voted against allowing the State Dept. of Health and Human Services to provide contraception to poor families.

I’m scheduled to talk to Gov. Gregoire this afternoon to get her reaction to the Plan B ruling.

O They Will Know We Are Christians…

posted by on November 9 at 2:00 PM

…by our indictments on embezzling and child porn charges.

On Thursday, a federal grand jury indicted [Matthew James] Beise, 36, of Delano, on five counts of mail fraud. He is accused of embezzling more than $240,000 from the church where he served as treasurer for eight years.

The indictment says Beise spent the money on personal credit card payments, jewelry, season tickets to Minnesota Vikings games and expenses related to construction of his $600,000 home.

The grand jury also indicted Beise on counts of possessing, transmitting and receiving child pornography. According the indictment, Beise’s computer contained almost 200 images of minors engaged in sexually explicit conduct. He allegedly traded similar images from 2004 to 2006 using his account with America Online.

Media Matters

posted by on November 9 at 1:36 PM

Before you go to tonight’s FCC hearing at Town Hall—4pm-11pm, 1119 Eighth Avenue—to speak truth to power, drop science, and make it plain about FCC Chairman Kevin Martin’s ill-considered proposal to lift prohibitions against cross ownership in the media—check out Reclaim the Media’s primer on the issues.

Martin gave little notice for the meeting (it was announced last week). Don’t let his attempt to short circuit turn out work. See you after work.

UPDATE: Governor Gregoire is testifying at 4:15. The Governor? Man, the last time I went to one of these FCC hearings it was mostly just a bunch of activists—one dressed up in a cardboard TV box. Sounds like tonight’s going to be a deal.

The Other Big Story for 2008

posted by on November 9 at 1:30 PM

Posted by Ryan S. Jackson

Lost among bigger headlines yesterday was an announcement by the House Democratic leadership that many of their vulnerable incumbents may be on their own financially—because the House Democrats intend to pour money into targeting 40 Republican seats, an ambitious plan that will almost certainly include Washington’s own Republican Rep. Dave Reichert of Bellevue.

Dueling reports from wonk-heavy sources tell the tale of two sides going in very opposite directions: The Politico’s report on the new Democratic plan dovetails with The Hill’s report on hand-wringing among the House Republican leadership as they come up short for both money and credible candidates. Combined with two new retirements on the Republican side this morning, things are not looking particularly bright for conservative lawmakers.

The view from the Senate also has the look of an expanding electoral sinkhole for Republicans; major retirements in Virginia and New Mexico, ugly approval ratings in generally reliably conservative states like Alaska and Kentucky, and traditionally close races in states like Oregon, Minnesota, and New Hampshire have raised the prospect of a filibuster-proof 60 seat majority for Democrats.

Roughly translated, the possibility for the largest Democratic majority in Congress since the Goldwater landslide of 1964 is becoming less and less of a pipe dream—a story that might end up being as big, or bigger, than the presidential race.

The Prop. 1 Campaign’s Cynical Polling Tactics

posted by on November 9 at 1:14 PM

According to internal polls for the ‘Yes’ on Prop 1 campaign, the roads and transit initiative was supposed to pass. Big.

It’s losing 56.3 to 43.6.

The Tim Hibbitts polls used by “Keep Washington Rolling” had Prop 1 ahead 50 to 42 in December of ‘06; ahead 57 to 37 in May of ‘07; ahead 58 to 37 in June ‘07; ahead 65 to 32 in July ‘07.

Closer to the vote, the campaign’s September 23 survey said 57 percent favored the measure.

At that time, Hibbitts summarized:

“Transportation concerns continue to be the top issue in the Puget Sound area, and voters are looking for solutions. Clearly, we enter the last six weeks of the campaign with a real chance to put this measure over the top, and are in a better position to win than I would have imagined possible eight months ago.”

Kinda sounds like a fundraising pitch to me. Which brings me to the cynical point of this post. I’m not so much curious about why Hibbitts’s polling was off. I’m more convinced that these polls were pre-fabbed and used as fund raising tools. How else are you going to get Microsoft kicking in $300,000, Boeing at $180,000 , Washington Mutual at $100,000, and $300,000 from the Washington Association of Realtors?

High rollers like those folks aren’t going to invest that kind of cash unless they think they’re going to win. It’s the way businesses think. And it seems to me—given how optimistic the campaign’s polls turned out to be—the campaign played those donors pretty good.

Consider: The Sept. 23 “a better position to win than I would have imagined possible eight months ago” poll landed at pretty opportune time for the campaign. It gave the campaign a last push to do some big fundraising before the October 16 cut off. (Initiative campaigns cannot accept anything larger than a $5,000 contribution three weeks out from the election.)

In the week after that poll, several big donations came in: $30,000, $25,000, $20,000, $15,000 from places like Wright Runstad, IUOE Local 612, Parametrix Inc., and David Evans & Associates.

I’ve always been skeptical of internal polling. Perhaps big donors will be now as well.

Casa Latina (Finally) On the Move

posted by on November 9 at 12:59 PM

The ongoing dispute over Casa Latina’s relocation to 17th and Jackson appears to have been resolved. Casa Latina has worked out a “good neighbor agreement” and should be moving into their new digs sometime next winter.

From the PI:

Under the agreement, no day workers will be allowed to hang out on the street and flag down employers as they have done for years on Western Avenue in Belltown. Casa Latina has agreed to hire a neighborhood ambassador, and keep $50,000 in a contingency fund in case problems do arise and additional ambassadors need to be hired. An advisory committee will also be formed to help resolve issues.

If Casa Latina doesn’t uphold its part of the agreement, the organization risks losing the $146,000 in annual funding it receives from the city, about 25 percent of the group’s total annual budget. The agreement expires after seven years.

I’ve got an email out to Judicial Watch—who claimed that the city was violating federal law by funding Casa Latina—to see if they plan to get involved.

Judicial Watch says they plan to get involved, but did not elaborate on their plans.

Happy Birthday Roseanne

posted by on November 9 at 12:50 PM

I know it’s old, I know you might have seen it already, but this is hysterical:


posted by on November 9 at 12:43 PM

Seattle may be losing pro basketball, but it’s officially gaining pro soccer.

What’s Taking So Long?

posted by on November 9 at 12:41 PM

Why is the National Archives being so slow in releasing those Hillary Clinton records from her time in the White House? Blame the UFO seekers and conspiracy theorists, who move faster than the journalists, apparently:

A major delay to the release of Clinton White House papers that might be of contemporary interest is that UFO believers and other conspiracy theorists filed their Freedom of Information Law requests ahead of the journalists, historians, and Clinton rivals who were digging for information about the First Lady.

Among the records that are coming out ahead of those that could shed additional light on Hillary Clinton’s failed health-care reform efforts:

-All files on UFOs, Roswell New Mexico, flying saucers, Area 51 or the TV show X-Files in the files of John Podesta

-Records or correspondence related to President Clinton wanting the Sci-Fi Channel at the White House and Camp David

-All files on UFOs in the files of Mike McCurry, White House Press Secretary

This Weekend at the Movies

posted by on November 9 at 12:33 PM

First, the news:

Writer’s Guild strike continues: LA Times, etc. There are a bunch of mildly uninspiring YouTube videos from the picket lines: Here’s one from some guys (and one woman) who write for The Office.

Movie palace: Pritzker-anointed architect Christian de Portzamparc has been tapped to design the museum planned by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences.

It had to happen: Big-name critic trashes mumblecore.

Trade media sucks up to new media: Check out Anne Thompson slobbering all over Hollywood Elsewhere.

What is Guillermo del Toro smoking?: Pan’s Labyrinth director will adapt an ancient British TV show about secret agents who acquire psychic powers after crashing in the Communist Himalayas.


Opening this week:

Andrew Wright reviews the “genuinely creepy diversion” P2 (it’s about a pretty lady trapped in a parking garage).

And in an oddly political On Screen this week: the stultifying Lions for Lambs (me: “Despite its topical veneer, this is a movie about pure, weightless abstractions: apathy versus action, moral courage versus careerism”), the Americans with Disabilities Act drama Music Within (Charles Mudede: “Why isn’t it just a documentary? Why does it have to be a drama? Why the actors? Why a script that employs the techniques and enhancements of fiction to tell a “true story”? Really, why?”), Darfur Now (me again: “a slick, almost uncomfortably optimistic documentary about the human catastrophe currently taking place in western Sudan”).

Terror's Advocate

Plus (keep scrolling): the best movie to come out this week, Terror’s Advocate (me for a third time: “The unsavory, even antisocial glamour that French defense lawyer Jacques Vergès depends on for his life’s work is exactly the stuff that makes for a chilling international thriller”), and the, um, second best, Fred Claus (Lindy West: “Oh my god I hate this lying sack of shit movie so much!”).


And in Limited Runs this week: the Shohei Imamura series wraps up with Black Rain, The Eel, and more; Barbarella gets two midnight shows at the Egyptian; the Polish Film in America festival continues through this weekend at the Seattle Art Museum.


And… I like the endearing Cannes oddball Quixotic (a loose dual portrait of Cervantes’s knight and squire); the SIFF ‘07 films The Bubble and Joe Strummer: The Future Is Unwritten make reappearances at the Varsity; the 70mm Ghostbusters wraps up at Cinerama; two intriguing experimental shows land at Northwest Film Forum, The Films of Michael Robinson (see his website for a taste) and In the Kingdom of Shadows: Two Stereoscopic Films by Zoe Beloff (see her website); there’s a partly experimental and partly narrative series at SIFF Cinema on the work of Lech Majewski (I couldn’t stand The Roe’s Room, but people seem to be liking the newer Glass Lips); the film Amy Taubin nominated as Korean-American mumblecore, In Between Days, plays at Grand Illusion through this weekend; and there’s a free screening of Paris Is Burning next week (as long as you can stand some car propaganda and are willing to RSVP in advance).


And in DVD: Jonathan Zwickel reviews Bling: A Planet Rock (which he actually first saw at a Scion event). New releases this week include Ratatouille, a collection of Pixar shorts, and the lovely I Don’t Want to Sleep Alone.

This Week on Drugs

posted by on November 9 at 12:25 PM


Mixed Feelings: Red Bull and alcohol more fun dangerous than alcohol alone.

Science: Sea Urchins + Marijuana = Euphoria!

867-5309: Spears must provide phone number for drug tests.

NYPD: Busted for zealous pot enforcement.

All-Time High: U.S. syringe-exchange programs.

Clocking In: California high court considers whether employees can use medical marijuana.

Shittiest Idea Ever: Feds tell Americans where to put their pills.

“Ferret waste, like nearly any other form of pet waste, can be effectively used to help prevent the abuse of unused prescription drugs,” SAMHSA spokesman Mark Weber said.

Hailey, Idaho: Passes three new pot laws.

Denver: Marijuana policy review panel will implement law modeled on I-75.

Nigeria: Fake chemicals used for pharmaceuticals.

Russia: “Patients in detoxification treatment are heavily sedated, making counselling efforts difficult or even pointless.”

Swiss Myths? Stoners getting good grades.

Price Bumps: Increase in cocaine prices convince Drug Czar that drug laws are working—never mind that it also means selling cocaine becomes more lucrative, requires addicts to steal more to pay for their habit, and the black market becomes more violent—mission accomplished!

“Assuming that high cocaine prices are hurting cartels is like assuming high gasoline prices are hurting oil companies.”


posted by on November 9 at 12:16 PM

Hey, fellow Seattle gaming addicts. I’m assuming at least a few of you will be lining up on Sunday to buy what just arrived at my doorstep:


But I’m not just posting this to brag. (By the way—NAH NAH NA-NAH, NAH! PHHHHBT!) See, Mario titles are like the Disney animated movies of the game world—high production values, ridiculously targeted to kids, still somehow fun for everybody…and, at least with this game, conspiracy theories about weird, hidden sex jokes.

If you take a close look at that box art, you’ll see a few letters with sparkly effects on their edges. Turns out, as more than a few gaming sites have pointed out, those letters spell out “UR MR GAY.” Amusing, if a bit of a stretch. But today, I saw that the game’s startup screen animates those sparklies, making the word that much more obvious to anybody who leaves the screen open for a few seconds before diving in.

It’s not “GOOD TEENAGERS TAKE OFF YOUR CLOTHES,” but there might be something to it. Forget about weird complaints of the character reinforcing Italian stereotypes. We’re talking about a guy in brightly colored overalls who sports a moustache—no beard, just the moustache—as he hangs out on Rainbow Road and occasionally transforms into “Fire Mario.” And his best friend’s a princess. I can’t be the first person to wonder if there’s an offensive gay stereotype hidden in the world’s leading video game franchise, can I? (While I’m at it, don’t even get me started on that whole Sonic and Tails thing…)

Anyway, the game is pretty damn great so far. Back to “work.”

Everything Old Is New Again: Giuliani Brings Back the Cold War

posted by on November 9 at 11:55 AM

Posted by Ryan. S Jackson

Widening the collection of people/things/places that a potential Rudy Giuliani presidency would like to bomb, The Des Moines Register reports that the former New York mayor wants a major increase in military spending to deal with the looming threat of… China and Russia.

Yes, the Cold War is back for 2008, and better than ever:

Giuliani said in response to a question about relations with China that the United States needs a bigger military, including at least 10 more combat brigades and a 300-ship Navy.

“If we do that, it will send a very strong signal to China and then Russia … that it doesn’t make sense to challenge us,” he said.

For those looking for even deeper background on Cold War 2008, Alexander Zaitchik of Moscow’s The Exile has an in-depth rundown of our new found interest in even bigger and uglier world conflict.

Shocker: Conservative Christian Pastor Charged With Raping Parishioners

posted by on November 9 at 11:51 AM

A least a dozen women have come forward with claims that the pastor of a Kitsap County church raped them. The alleged rapes took place over many years and began when some of the women were as young as ten. Today the PI has a front page story about Pastor Robbin Harper (“Pastor accused of child rape ruled with an iron hand.”)

As is usually the case when daily papers report on the sexual abuse of children by religious leaders, you could read the PI’s entire front-page report and conclude that this is first known instance of the priestly/pastorly sexual abuse of children in all of recorded human history.

At what point do we start to regard this kind of reporting—this kind of sniveling, deferential, credulous reporting—as complicity in the crimes of men like “religious figures” like Pastor Robb?

From the plague of sexually abusive youth pastors to the child rape franchise that is the Catholic Church, it should be clear to everyone on earth now that this pastor-rapes-kids shit happens all the fucking time. And guess what? You almost never hear about Unitarian pastors raping parishioners or Methodist youth pastors diddling kids. No, it’s always Catholics, Baptists, conservative evangelicals, and “iron-fisted” assholes like Pastor Robb. And what’s up with that? Well, it seems obvious to anyone paying attention that a statistically significant number of men like “Pastor Robb”—men who claim to speak for God, men that claim to be His representatives here on earth, men that portray God as obsessed with sex and control—turn out to be power-crazed sexual abusers that control, manipulate, and sexually abuse their “flocks.”

There’s a pattern here. And people are clearly taking a risk when they sign up with a conservative church or put themselves under the thumb of some “iron-fisted” pastor. (Hey there, Rev. Hutcherson; how you doing, Pastor Driscoll.) But the same mainstream media outlets that can’t resist drawing our attention to known risks for relatively rare cancers get all tongue tied when a certain kind of religious leaders presents a known risk. Dangerous people shouldn’t get a pass just because they wave a bibles over their damn heads.

And wither the media’s love affair with “patterns”? When something bad happens again and again and doesn’t touch on religion, the mainstream media asks, “Why did X happen? Why does X keep happening? How can we get X to stop happening?” That’s what the media is doing right now about all those poisoned toys made in China. “Why did lead turn up in this toy made in China? Why does lead keep turning up in toys made in China? How can we get lead to stop turning up in toys made in China?” Somehow those entirely obvious questions are avoided when the bad actors are “men of the cloth” and not Chinese manufacturers in some province their readers can’t pronounce. And why’s that? Because when it comes to cases like Pastor Robb, asking why this happened, why it keeps happening, and how we can stop it leads to conclusions the PI doesn’t have the guts to print: Abuse, sexual and otherwise, is hard-wired into authoritarian religious communities. It’s in their fucking DNA.

The sexual abuse of children and vulnerable adults is not a shocking aberration or an unexpected violation of a “faith community” lead by a Pastor Robb or a Pope Benedict. It is known risk, a known side effect of a kind of controlling, authoritarian religious garbage peddled by Robbs and Benedicts and Discrolls and Hutchersons.

Papers can’t print that, of course, lest they be accused of being “hostile to religion.” But by avoiding the obvious follow-ups and obvious conclusions—which are only hostile to a certain brand of religion, not all religions generally—the media is effectively friendly to child rape.

From the PI:

“You want to believe that good things come from church and only good people go to church,” said Danel Swan, a former member whose 20-year-old niece was the first to make a report to police. Harper had been molesting her since age 12, the young woman said.

Initially, Swan and the girl’s father had been attracted to Harper’s no-frills style of ministry. He lived in a mobile home. He was always on-site. Swan even had him perform her marriage ceremony. But within a few years, she fled.

“It was condemnation, condemnation, condemnation—until you can’t take any more,” Swan said. “You start to think you’re going crazy. It was absolute control. He had a way of making you feel that if there was something going on in your life, you had the devil in you. And he was powerful. You believed him.”

Yep, some people want to believe that “good things come from church and only good people go to church,” like Swann says. But case after case after case—it’s a pattern!— shows that believing this to be so is deeply foolish. It’s dangerous. You know, just like those lead-spiked toys from China. Maybe fewer people would fall for Pastor Robbs if the media did a better job of informing them about the risk presented by Pastor Robbs.

Assignment: Clean Up Someone Else’s Shit

posted by on November 9 at 11:45 AM

David, a junior at a university in Seattle, wrote to me because he was disgusted by his roommate’s messy bedroom and he wanted someone to come and clean it up. David told me it was important Andrea’s room was cleaned soon, because every resident of the house had to climb over her piles of underwear, tank tops, beer bottles, unopened care packages, and heaping Glad bags filled with hangers to get to their rooms upstairs. The pack-rat roommate did not know I was coming to clean, and David intended to surprise her Oprah-style with a clean new room.

I went to David’s house last night around 10:30. He answered the door and led me to Andrea’s room. Then he handed me a Corona and said, “You’re going to need this.” I looked around. It was hard to imagine where to start. Which pile of clothing was more unsightly; the mountain of dirty thongs, period-stained leggings, and crumpled Anthropology bags filled with unwashed clothing to the left of the door, or the larger pile of purses, luggage, opened cardboard boxes and coats that lay in the center of the room near the bed? I stuck out my hand and felt around. That’s when my hand brushed over something damp. The lacy black underwear, perhaps, or maybe it was the grey unisex sweatpants. I couldn’t tell.

David’s three other female roommates came into the room and sat on the messy roommate’s bed. “This is fun,” one of them said, observing me. “I feel like I’m watching TV.” The three of them took bong hits and stared at my hands.


I unearthed a Hello Kitty polo, and one of the roommates insisted I try it on, along with a pair of hot red pants. “Just do it! You know you want to!” one of them yelled. I told her I did not want to.

After about twenty minutes my hands and arms started to itch. I couldn’t figure out if it was my usual dry skin acting up, or if Andrea’s had infected me with some sort of body lice. “Don’t worry, the only STD you could possibly get here would be scabies,” one of the roommates said, lying on the bed and staring at the ceiling. The other roommates giggled.

The itching passed after a couple more minutes of folding, and I began to make a dent in the soggy mountain to the left of the door. One of the roommates and I hoisted a dresser from the basement and began to stuff it with clothing. I didn’t organize the clothes very well: jeans went with tank tops and undies into the same drawer. I feared that obsessive organization would slow me down, and there were enough clothes to last for many more nights of folding. Andrea had used her employee’s discount to buy half of the season’s offerings at Anthropology. There were also Value Village and Goodwill t-shirts, Mossimo jackets, vintage belts, H+M sweaters, even a Japanese Kimono. Andrea could have eclectically clothed half a Greyhound bus station.


After about two more hours of folding, Andrea finally came home. “Why are there people in my room?!” she yelled. I explained to her that this was an intervention, much like the Meth head interventions on A&E… but about clothing. She had too much of it, she was addicted to it, and it was ruining her relationship with her roommates. Andrea looked mortified. “You mean you’ve just been sitting here folding my clothing this whole time?” Yes, we had, and after seeing Andrea’s stained undies, moldy bed sheets and lacy lingerie, I knew more about her than I ever wanted to know.

Suddenly Andrea’s face turned a brighter shade of red. “Oh my god, I need to grab something” she mumbled. She tore a page out of the Stranger newspaper, which was sitting on the chair, and grabbed at a dark corner of the clothing heap. “This guy left a used condom here, but I got it. You don’t have to throw it out. I will.”

Steven Blum
Public Intern


Hey, Smartass

posted by on November 9 at 11:20 AM

As long as you’re idling around online, might as well learn something.

UC Berkeley becomes the first campus to make full courses available on YouTube.

Here’s some “physics for future presidents”:

Presidents, it appears, are the new poets.

Lame: Obama on Social Security, Corn Ethanol, Coal

posted by on November 9 at 11:18 AM

In the past few days, Obama has made, to my mind, several serious blunders on major policy issues. First, he bashed Hillary Clinton for her position on corn-based ethanol—not because she used to support heavy subsidies for corn production, but because she backpedaled on that support. “It’s hard to believe that she is a strong ethanol supporter given her track record and this is something that represents a major reversal and what we need is consistency on these issues.”

Then he said he did not support legislation that would reform an 1872 law that allows mining companies to mine on public land without paying royalties—because, he said, it “places a significant burden on the mining industry and could have a significant impact on jobs (in rural Nevada) given the difficulties the industry is already facing in maintaining its operations.” That significant burden being, um, making them pay any royalties at all? And don’t even get me started on his position on “clean coal.”

Finally, Obama declared yesterday that Social Security was in “crisis,” and slammed Clinton for failing to acknowledge it and come up with a solution. That’s a 180-degree turnaround from just two weeks ago, when Obama said definitively that “Social Security is not in a crisis.”

A Matter of Taste

posted by on November 9 at 11:08 AM

I have no idea what good townhome design looks like. At least that’s what I’ve learned from reading Slog comments on my development posts. So, I decided I’d put it you folks.

I’m posting images of a number of townhome developments from around the continent to see what you guys think. Some of these townhomes have won design awards, or are by award winning developers. Some aren’t.

Have at it.







Do any of these do anything for you? Hate brick? Love brick? Want more faux-craftsman?

If you have pics of something you love/hate in your neighborhood, feel free to post/send ‘em in.

Today The Stranger Suggests

posted by on November 9 at 11:00 AM


‘Franklin and Figaro’ at Freehold’s East Hall Theater

This “revolutionary farce” is about bad guys chasing a playwright through the streets and occasionally kicking him in the gut. The setting is moody, prerevolutionary Paris, which is being paid a diplomatic visit by a paunchy, midrevolutionary Ben Franklin. From time to time, a troupe of satirical players ascends a little stage to recite rhyming couplets that—in the spirit of the libelles that fed the French Revolution—skewer the characters with their own vices. It’s vicious fun. (Macha Monkey at Freehold’s East Hall Theatre, 1525 10th Ave, 8 pm, $12–$15.)


Hero of our Times

posted by on November 9 at 10:53 AM

I finally have a chance to post about this piece of news from West Africa:

Dozens of migrants trying to reach Europe spent three weeks at sea off West Africa’s coast and threw nearly 50 bodies overboard after their vessel lost power and supplies dwindled, officials said Tuesday.

…The boat, which set out from Senegal with as many as 150 people and apparently traveled hundreds of miles, was found Tuesday by a Mauritanian patrol boat, a Spanish Civil Guard official said. It was one of the highest death tolls this year among Africans trying to escape poverty and reach Europe’s southern gateway. When the vessel was found, there were 100 people aboard and two dead bodies, the official said under department rules barring her name from being published. In Mauritania, officials agreed that there were 98 survivors, but otherwise offered slightly different numbers.

Master of the human universe:

When you risk the life that you have in one place for a life that might be better elsewhere, you are taking the same risk that makes a man a master in the ground battle for recognition—for Kojeve this basic confrontation between the master and the slave is the motor of history and progress. What brings the immigrant out of the slavery of a place to the position of a master is this: he/she breaks with the given, the being-in-itself, and determines that being human is much more important than simply being, simply existing. Like the master, the immigrant wants being-for-itself, and he/she will risk their given life to be-for-itself. Life is not for them the complete picture; life is not always worth living. A life of happiness, of freedom from simply being—this is more important. Because the immigrant has this understanding, he/she is a higher human than rest who cling to dear life.

My greatest shame? I did not risk anything to get to America. Indeed, my parents had connections in the American Embassy in Botswana, and I flew to the States from Stockholm, after spending a blank month with a count who did nothing except bitch about how heavy the inheritance tax was in Sweden. Most shameful of all, the visit to Stockholm was a gift from my mother for graduating from high school, and I arrived in New York with the final shame of having my papers in order. My life has not been the life of a master, but the life a slave, a slave to life.

Can You Really Get Herpes from Urinating Into an Empty Yoo-Hoo Bottle?

posted by on November 9 at 10:27 AM


That’s the primary question I have after reading this I, Anonymous submission.

You fucking piece of shit man-whore. In the four years we’ve been roommates, not only have I had to suffer through countless nights of your Mike Patton tributes—dude, didn’t anyone ever tell you that it’s only cool for a girl to be a screamer?—I’ve also had to share my living space with some true fucking champions of skank. Remember that forty-something panther with the flapjacks you picked up in the Kmart parking lot? There’s nothing I like more when I’m hungover than to wake up in the morning and find some grinning snaggletooth wandering around my kitchen, remnants of your duck butter glistening in her nasty fucking post-menopausal ‘stache. What the fuck was that? All I wanted was a fucking bagel and I have to see that shit. Oh, yeah, and then there’s that poly hippie chick whose nappy-ass boyfriend you let crash on our couch while you fucked her in the ass—oh yeah, hmmm… why did we all end up with the crabs two days later? You fucking moron. And that was my fucking couch too. But now you’ve really fucked up, and I’m leaving this cesspool of carnal travesty and I hope you drown in your own putrid fucking semen. Remember our trip to Seattle for Bumbershoot? Remember how I had to piss so bad and you wouldn’t stop the fucking car because you were in a hurry to meet up with some internet ho, but you were so kind as to give me your empty Yoo-Hoo bottle? Oh how generous and thoughtful of you, you fucking winner. Guess what? My doctor today gave me the news—I have fucking herpes! And don’t try and tell me it wasn’t you, you Valtrex-popping motherfucker. Now I have something to remember you by for all eternity, you fucking douchebag. Oh, but wait, there’s more. Remember when your sister came up here to visit you last weekend? Remember when you were out “sarging” with your fellow man-whores? Oh yes I did.

I’m awaiting an answer on the bottle-to-wang method of herpes transmission from a real-life medical professional. I’ll keep you posted.

I Don’t Get It

posted by on November 9 at 10:07 AM

Why is the Seattle Times choosing not to name a mentally ill man who was allegedly scammed out of tens of thousands of dollars by Huling Bros. auto salesmen in 2006?

According to the Times, they’re not naming him “because he is mentally ill and vulnerable.”

Uh, okay. I can sort of understand that—but it seems far more appropriate in, say, a stalking or rape case, where the victim is actually vulnerable to being victimized again. That seems pretty unlikely in this case, given that all the alleged perpetrators are no longer in a position to victimize him. More to the point, his name has already been widely publicized—here and here and here and here and here and here.

Holier-than-thou much, Seattle Times?

I Agree With Mayor Nickels Now That He Agrees With Me: Let’s Vote on Transit in 2008

posted by on November 9 at 10:00 AM

I’ve been arguing for over a year that it was stupid to tie roads and transit together.

And I continued to make that point right up until election day with our NO on Prop 1 endorsement when we said we didn’t want that Big Gulp with our salad

We also said this:

If we turn roads and transit down, the invaluable transit side of the package can come back next year —which would be great given that Democratic Party turnout will be huge.

As they did during the viaduct debate, when we advocated for the surface/transit option (now the preferred option), the establishment pontificated that we were idealistic weirdoes.

Listen to the establishment now. Here’s Mayor Nickels in today’s Seattle Times in article about polling that shows voters would have passed a transit package on its own:

“I recounted to (the Sound Transit Board) what happened in 1995 when the first Sound Transit plan was turned down, and I think that it offers us a pretty good lesson,” Nickels said. “We went back to the ballot in 1996, in a presidential election, with the second Sound Transit plan and it was very different than the first one … and we won going away.”

This is encouraging stuff from the mayor. (During the contentious campaign, Pro Prop 1 folks argued that Ron Sims alone wasn’t going to be able to bring back a package on his own. Well, it looks like he’s not alone now.)

The fact that Nickels is saying bold stuff like this also confirms what the Sierra Club was saying before the election—that this vote could reject conventional wisdom about political “reality” and let voters set the agenda. It also gets the ball rolling on the option we’ve been pushing all along: Expanding transit, not roads, transit.

This is not 1968; voting ‘No’ did not, as hysterics like Goldy argued, scuttle our chances for a generation. It clarified our priorities.

A year ago I wrote this, when I urged the legislature to de-couple light rail and RTID:

Forget that. It’s time for Sound Transit to break up with RTID…Sound Transit—and light-rail expansion—has nothing to gain from this shotgun wedding. Indeed, an Elway Poll from earlier this year found Sound Transit expansion polling well above 50 percent and RTID well below.

So, as long as Olympia has passed the buck to the voters, let’s let the voters do this in a sensible way. Instead of catering to powerful road builders and business interests who push legislators to make ugly compromises (business leaders threatened to campaign against Sound Transit if it wasn’t linked to RTID), the legislature should give voters a chance to make a clean decision.

Let’s have a stand-alone vote on light rail and a stand-alone vote on RTID. My sense is that a single Sound Transit will make out much better than one with a ball and chain.

I lost that fight, and so, during this election season, I argued we should reject the $17.8 billion roads and transit package and send a message from urban voters that we would not be blackmailed—that transit should and would come back, pronto. I’m glad Nickels has picked up that fight.

What They Said…

posted by on November 9 at 9:39 AM

The NYT today on the passage of the Employment Non-Discrimination Act by the U.S. House of Representatives:

Winning a majority in the House required a painful decision by the bill’s sponsors to jettison language extending the prohibition against employment discrimination to transgender individuals. As a result, some gay rights groups opposed the final bill.

We sympathize with the groups’ sense of injustice, but disagree heartily as to strategy. Transgender people should be protected from discrimination, and we hope they soon will be. It would have been regrettable, however, had the sponsors refused to compromise, and as a result, lost the chance to extend basic civil rights to the millions of Americans who would be covered by the current bill.

Throughout American history, civil rights have been achieved in incremental steps. The landmark Civil Rights Act of 1964, for example, barred race discrimination in public accommodations, an enormous step forward at the time. It wasn’t until the next year that Congress protected voting rights in a separate bill.

That Didn’t Take Long

posted by on November 9 at 9:28 AM

After the last Democratic debate there was a lot of talk about where Clinton, Obama, and Edwards stand on drivers licenses for illegal immigrants. Just in case there was any doubt, Mitt Romney is now using this ad to remind voters that he’s against drivers licenses for illegal immigrants—and much more:

The Morning News

posted by on November 9 at 7:01 AM

Torture Schmorture: The Senate has confirmed the nomination of Michael Mukasey as attorney general.

Pakistan: Former Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto has been detained in her home by police. Meanwhile, a suicide bomber launched an attack on the home of Amir Muqam, a federal cabinet minister and ally of president Musharraf.

It Only Took 7 Years: President Bush has been handed his first veto override by the Senate.

Drug Wars: Pharmaceutical giant Merck has agreed to pay $4.85 billion in settlements over its yanked pain medicatin Vioxx.

Sludge by the Bay: 58,000 gallons of oil are fouling San Francisco Bay after a South Korea-bound tanker ran into the San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge on Wednesday.

Time Served: Arthur H. Bremer, failed assassin of presidential candidate George Wallace, has been released from prison.

Meager Comfort: Condoleezza Rice admits to a few mistakes in Iraq.

“I’m sure there are lots of things we might have done better,” she said. “I’ll give you one with Iraq. If I had to do it all over again, we would have had the balance between center, local and provincial better. But that’s the kind of thing you learn over time.”

Falling: The Dow dropped 130 points at opening this morning due to concerns over credit, tech woes.

Recalled George: 175,000 China-made Curious George dolls the latest toys to be pulled from store shelves.

College Killing: UW student Amanda Knox can remain in jail for up to a year while she awaits formal charges.

Deceptive Eyman: The state Supreme Court has tossed Initiative 747, proving once again few are as good at wasting tax dollars like anti-tax “hero” Tim Eyman.

Beliefs Trump Health: U.S. District Court Judge Ronald B. Leighton suspends state rules, clears the way for pharmacists to refuse the morning after pill due to religious beliefs.

Death of Comedy: Seattle not funny anymore, host of unfunny local comedy show declares.

Moving On: Mayor Nickels wants another light rail plan on the ballot in 2008. Meanwhile, King County Executive Ron Sims has a plan for five new ferry routes.

The Lizard King at Florida State University

Thursday, November 8, 2007

You’re Welcome

posted by on November 8 at 6:05 PM

Thanks to Irena in the comments, I’ve already found Dan’s costume for next Halloween—a Catholic priest!

Costume (possibly NSFW) below the jump.

Continue reading "You're Welcome" »

Disembodied Boobies for Everyone!

posted by on November 8 at 5:44 PM

Melissa over at Shakesville has put together an awesome collection of disembodied-boob-shaped novelties— “remnants,” Liss writes sarcastically, “of that glorious lost culture in which disembodied breasts ran free and men still peed standing up. They’re hard to find these days, of course. But the regrettable loss of novelty boob kitsch was inevitable with sexism’s end.” (Annoyingly, Photobucket removed many of the images because they were “offensive”—which is weird, you know, since they’re supposed to be innocuous and hilarious.)

Awesome stuff like this:


and this:


and my favorite, the singing, wall-mounted “Jingle Jugs”:


Plus! A bonus link to all the women-as-toilets products that are out there:


Have fun!

Smart New Enviro Blog

posted by on November 8 at 5:03 PM

How had I never heard of Brave New Leaf?

This blog chronicles the life of a Seattle resident as she attempts to green her life. Basic premise, but the execution is brilliant. Her writing is sharp and smart, the case she makes is compelling, and, most importantly, she comes off as normal and sane. I especially dig the audits she does of her waste, water and energy use. Anybody want to do one of those for me?

(Thanks to Alex for the link.)

Devils and Angels

posted by on November 8 at 4:58 PM

Shortly after posting this video, its auteur, an 18-year-old Finn, went to his high school and shot five boys, two girls, and a headmistress dead.

Shortly after posting this video, its auteurs probably took a shower, had a beer, and made sweet, sweet love to their significant others.

Skateparks A-Go-Go

posted by on November 8 at 4:45 PM

The race is on to build Seattle’s first new skatepark:

The River City skatepark (RCS) is going through the motions of their environmental review, and should begin construction in February or March. Construction should, hopefully, only take 3 or 4 months.

Meanwhile, the Lower Woodland skatepark finally broke ground last month—after a long legal battle—and should be up and running by the summer.

With City Council Parks Committee Chair David Della on his way out, maybe Seattle can start to catch up with the 5 skateparks Portland’s built, renovated or begun planning for since they passed their city wide skatepark plan in 2005.

It’s Official: Portland Is Greener Than Seattle

posted by on November 8 at 4:23 PM

It’s been established that Portland’s more bike-friendly than Seattle. They also managed to build a light rail system without shackling its approval to roads. And now, they’re looking at legislation that would tax housing that isn’t energy efficient, and provide payments to builders that build efficient homes.

From the Oregonian:

Believed to be the first of its kind in the nation, the carbon fee and inspection requirement would levy taxes upon builders who merely comply with the energy efficiency requirements of the Oregon building code, already one of the most stringent in the nation. It would then pay cash rewards to developers who make buildings that save at least 45 percent more energy than the code requires.

Can our mayor and City Council get on this NOW, please?

UPDATE: Hmm. Probably not. The city’s Department of Planning and Development is proposing that new buildings in South Lake Union meet the anemic (and actually pretty meaningless) LEED Silver standard, but only if they want to go above current height limits. Not exactly inspiring stuff.

Flickr Photo of the Day

posted by on November 8 at 4:20 PM

Two Words: GOD. BOD.


From Stranger Flickr pool member, &y

“Did you know you could make art out of dead animals? YES!”

posted by on November 8 at 3:59 PM

Via Unfogged, which calls it “the most awesome thing you will read today.”

You’re invited on a FREE tour of the New York City Chinatown Garbage. Did you know you could make art out of dead animals? YES! I am going to show you how to collect dead animals from the garbage in Chinatown to make your own personal taxidermy! This is the first NYC CHINATOWN GARBAGE TAXIDERMY TOUR! You will learn how to dig in the garbage for dead animals. You can make art out of these animals. It’s really cool!. I’ve found everything from sharks to frogs to plain old unidentifiable crap. Sometimes I find nothing interesting, but that is what makes it fun. You never know! RSVP is appreciated but not required. RAIN OR SHINE.

Note: Flashlights not required, because he “searches by feel.”

Can It Be True? A Free Historic Building to an Arts Organization?

posted by on November 8 at 3:51 PM

Free aside from repairs, of course. But seriously: is this the kind of deal anyone will be interested in?

I’m on a deadline and headed for an airplane at the same time, otherwise I’d look into this more deeply, but this is the word that I and a bunch of other reporters just received from Scott Lawrimore, owner of Lawrimore Project downtown, which is next to the building in question:

It has come to my attention that the City of Seattle has released its hold on a permit to acquire the GIGANTIC, historical and long-fallow Immigration Building next to my gallery here in the International District.

This building was offered by the Government Service Administration and its Regional Manager to the City of Seattle for $1 if they would dedicate it for an arts or cultural purpose.

The City of Seattle ignored this offer.

The City of Seattle instead tried to get it for a developer to turn into mixed-use office space as part of their larger plan to turn my entire block into condos, retail and office space (for which it is not yet zoned).

The Government Service Administration and its Regional Manager now have a very small window of time where they can hear from ANY, I repeat ANY arts organization that can utilize this building for the greater cultural community’s benefit and make a “Public Benefit Transfer” of the property—essentially ‘give’ the building to an organization that will shepherd it for a cultural purpose. Whether it’s Artist Trust or the Gage Academy or Cornish or The Henry or U.W. or SAM or The Frye or On the Boards or A.C.T. or… THIS IS THE TIME FOR THEM TO LET THEIR INTEREST BE KNOWN!!!

If this interest is not made know within the next week, the G.S.A. will be forced to put the building up for public sale and the noble, altruistic intent of the GSA’s Regional Manager will fall by the wayside as it inevitably falls into the hands of a developer.

This is an amazing opportunity that should not go ignored.

Beyond this being an “arts” story, there is a larger issue with what the City of Seattle has set forth as its priorities.

ANYTHING you can do to get this story out there or spread the word to organizations that might benefit from this knowledge would be great.

Ron Paul Wins New York Straw Poll

posted by on November 8 at 3:45 PM

He’s on a roll:

The results: Mr. Paul, 26 votes; Mr. Giuliani, 21; Mitt Romney, 6; John McCain, 4; Mike Huckabee, 2; Duncan Hunter, 1; Fred Thompson, 1; Tom Tancredo, 0.

Today on Line Out

posted by on November 8 at 3:30 PM

Tonight in Music: People Talking and Singing, Billy Joel, Drop the Lime, and Sondre Lerche, and Jay Reatard

Today in Music News: Moby Sells Out Licenses Everything (Again), The Blood Brothers Break Up (Again), and More

On Air: KEXP Live Sound Wizard Kevin Suggs

We’ll Miss You Too: The Blood Brothers Say Goodbye

The Schmuck and the Supermodel: Baby Boomer Arson Apologist Billy Joel

Poconut Pullouts: The Coconut Coolouts Drink Syrup, Eat Two Kinds of Tacos

“Just Black Enough?”: Terry Miller on People Talking and Singing

Pro-Light Rail Enviros May Have Swung Prop. 1 Election

posted by on November 8 at 3:27 PM

The most interesting conclusion from the Sierra Club’s exit polling of 5,000 voters in King, Pierce, and Snohomish Counties, released today, is that pro-transit environmental voters who opposed Prop. 1 may have been decisive in its defeat on Tuesday.

Stay with me: Among people who voted “no,” 20 percent (31 percent in Seattle) said they were most concerned by environmental impacts like global warming. (The largest group—45 percent—voted against it mainly because they didn’t want higher taxes, and another 19 percent were opposed to specific projects).

Among “no” voters who would have supported Sound Transit alone, 39 percent voted no because of the environmental impacts of the roads in the package. Crunching the numbers, that group amounts to six percent of all voters. “What was unusual and what was unique about this election was the decisive role of a small group of voters,” pollster Tom Riehle said in a conference call this morning. “In the absence of their concern about global warming, this would have been a much closer election than it was.” Prop. 1 was going down, as of the latest count, 56 to 44 percent—so if those pro-transit defectors had voted yes, along with a few other “no” voters from the anti-tax and specific projects groups, the election would have gone the other way.

A few more interesting findings from the exit polling:

Among voters who voted “yes,” more than half—54 percent—did so because of both the roads and transit components of the package. Thirty-five percent voted “yes” because of transit alone, and just 11 percent voted “yes” because of roads alone.

Looking deeper into the “no” numbers, a plurality of those who didn’t want higher taxes—35 percent—said they were most concerned by the fact that some of the taxes (specifically, for Sound Transit) would last 50 years. That plurality is somewhat deceiving, though—combining people who said they were most concerned about the sales tax increase (21 percent) and those who said they cared most about “the fact [that] the taxes hurt the poor more than the wealthy” (14 percent), which are both anti-sales tax sentiments, yields a total of 35 percent—the same as the number who said the taxes lasted too long.

Even more interesting: A strong plurality (47 percent) of people who were opposed to specific projects cited extension of light rail to Tacoma as their number-one concern. The other light rail extension (to Microsoft) didn’t make the list. That concern was most pronounced the furthest away from the extension (in Snohomish County) and least pronounced in Pierce County, where the extension would be.

The numbers also reveal that the roads part of the package probably wouldn’t have passed on its own: Just 45 percent of all voters said they would have voted for it, and 39 percent said they would have voted against it, with 16 percent undecided. What is more clear is that light rail alone would have passed—something the state legislature was fully aware of when it yoked the two proposals together in 2006. More than half (52 percent, and 64 percent in Seattle) said they would have voted for transit alone, 36 percent were opposed, and 12 percent were undecided.

The poll also refuted the conventional wisdom that people won’t vote for tolls. Fifty-four percent believed major transportation projects should be funded through user fees like tolls, and just 25 percent supported the kind of general tax increases that the failed package would have put in place. Fully 70 percent supported electronic tolling on the I-90 and 520 bridges.

Re: Letter of the Day

posted by on November 8 at 3:23 PM

As long as we’re flagellating ourselves, let’s get our numbers correct.

Heckuva job Seattle! Because you were too stoned to go vote (only about 26% of you did), the right wing kicked ass in this week’s election and Washington State will be the worse for it.

It’s nothing to get excited about, but it currently looks like about 27% of King County’s registered voters turned in a ballot. And counting.

Notably, 45.61% of people who vote absentee turned a ballot in. Looks like there’s something to be said for voting in bars (or stoned at home) after all.

UPDATE: It’s now 29%. Woo hoo.

What the Sherman Loss Means for the Democrats in ‘08

posted by on November 8 at 3:15 PM

One thing I kept hearing in the “who’s gonna win?” conversations during the runup to yesterday’s election was this: “He’s got a D after his name.”

This was the line used by folks who thought Bill Sherman was going to win the race for King County Prosecutor against Republican Dan Satterberg. And yeah, you’d think that D would be a plus around these blue parts.

Indeed, just look at the difference in “hard money” fundraising by the Democrats and Republicans this year (the money they can use to help candidates directly). The Central Democratic Committee reports that its hard money account raised $635,868 so far this year. The Republican Committee? $176,000.

Apparently, it’s a good time to be a Democrat.

But Satterberg won. Maybe it’s actually better to have an R by your name in one important way: The party thinks to kick in some of that cash to your campaign.

Check it out: Despite the fact that the Democrats trounced the Republicans in hard money fund raising, the Republicans gave $125,000 of that $176,000 to Satterberg. Of their nearly $636,000, the Democrats gave about $30,000 to Sherman.

On the bright side for Democrats: They still have a lot of money left for ‘08.

However, on the bright side for Republicans: Dino Rossi can now motivate his party (and his donors) by talking about how the Republicans actually won in King fucking County.

I’m not sure what’s more valuabe: Money or momentum.

Giuliani on Al Qaeda Associate’s Payroll?

posted by on November 8 at 2:49 PM

It sounds crazy (or, if you’re an oppo researcher, too good to be true). But check this out:

How much exactly would it cost to get Rudy Giuliani to holster his overdone 9/11 sanctimony? The government for the tiny Persian Gulf nation of Qatar might have a good idea.

Following earlier reports that Giuliani was still getting paid by the consulting firm he created, Mary Jacoby of the Wall Street Journal sheds light on some potentially problematic sources of Giuliani’s private income. Chief among them is Qatar, the U.S. ally that paid Giuliani Partners for “security advice” regarding their petroleum facilities. The article uncovers a “potential political pitfall” for Giuliani’s candidacy and image given Qatar’s spotty record in fighting Al Qaeda, but it stops short of explicitly addressing an aspect of the business arrangement that could dog Giuliani during his quest for the presidency.

Specifically, the ostensible chief consumer of Giuliani’s security advice in this case would be Qatar’s internal security ministry—currently headed by a known Al Qaeda associate.

Giving Season

posted by on November 8 at 2:21 PM

rosesho.jpg Yesterday I got mad at Mr. Poe for being a jackass in comments. Today he sent me roses. (Thank you, MP.) Anyone else tempted to send me flowers shouldn’t hesitate. Red is my favorite color.

And now, to pay the gifting forward, I’m passing on a plea from Toys for Tots:

Toys for Tots (with sponsor Mr. Magorium’s Wonder Emporium) is hoping to break a world record with the largest toy drive in history this month. Ten key U.S. cities are involved, and it seems Seattle hasn’t stepped up as of yet. Says Adam Cozens, a PR manager on the project:

Seattle is now three days into its campaign to help raise more the 12,000 pounds of toys for the holiday season for Toys For Tots. Compared to some other towns, we are a little bit behind in our collection efforts. We have 50 boxes around the Seattle/Western Washington area and we need to get the word out.

You can contribute new, unwrapped toys at Western Washington Radio Shacks and Regal movie theaters, or donate online via Fat Brain Toys.

Sally Clark Saving Cascade People’s Center?

posted by on November 8 at 2:18 PM

As the city hacks away at the budget, Councilmember Sally Clark is expected to propose a $25,000 gap fund for the Cascade People’s Center (CPC). The money—which would come from a Department of Neighborhoods grant—would keep CPC open through the 1st quarter of 2008 while they put together a business plan.

CPC would also be eligible for a city “challenge grant,” which would match the center’s funding if they’re able to raise $75,000. Additionally, the CPC would continue to use their facility rent free.

All told, the CPC could have $175,000 to work with next year, just over half of their usual $300,000 annual budget.

CPC Director Myla Becker is excited about the opportunity to keep the center up and running but, she says, “we will have to cut our staffing in half and reduce our hours and programming.”

The council’s final vote on the budget will be on November 19th.

Hillary Clinton’s Lesbian Lover

posted by on November 8 at 2:18 PM


She’s freakin’ hot—hell, I’d do her. Says Harper’s

It’s not just Republicans who play rough in South Carolina. Rumors have been circulating in the Palmetto State, and elsewhere, that Hillary Clinton is having a lesbian affair. Her alleged paramour: a beautiful aide named Huma Abedin (Oscar de la Renta says he longs to see Huma in a strapless dress before he dies). As you can see from the photo, if Hillary is having an affair with Abedin it would not be evidence of her lesbianism as much as of her common sense and sound judgment.

The hard-to-credit rumor of Hillary’s Sapphic excursions is being stoked by right-wing bloggers. They suggest that this supposed romance shows thecandidate is not only a lesbian but consorting with terrorists, given that the Michigan-born Abedin is reportedly from a family brimming with known Muslims.

But it’s not just Republicans who are pushing the story. Will Folks, a well-known blogger in South Carolina, reported yesterday that he’d “heard from sources at rival Democratic presidential campaigns who claim that they ‘know it to be true’ that Hill and Huma are romantically-involved.” I called Folks, and he said that two different Democratic campaigns had told him about the alleged affair, but neither had “presented anything remotely resembling proof.”

Yeah, Harper’s, it’s awful the way right-wing blogs and rival Democratic campaigns are stoking this rumor—a rumor I hadn’t actually heard until I read about it, um, Harper’s. It’s one that many Slog readers hadn’t heard about, uh, until they read it here.


posted by on November 8 at 2:09 PM

From near the center of Lolita:

“I moved toward my glimmering darling, stopping or retreating every time I thought she stirred or was about to stir. A breeze from wonderland had begun to affect my thoughts…”
That wonderland (with its fantastic breezes) can be found in the background of these images.

Image one, behind the house:

Image two, above her head:

Image three, a wonderland of trees.

What we see in the background of all three are “mists of tenderness enfold[ing] mountains of longing.”

What Are You Doing? Look What He Did!

posted by on November 8 at 12:35 PM

Yesterday I went outside to see what this guy was doing. Well - here’s what he did. I think he really nailed it, especially his pants…


Letter of the Day

posted by on November 8 at 11:54 AM

Heckuva job Seattle! Because you were too stoned to go vote (only about 26% of you did), the right wing kicked ass in this week’s election and Washington State will be the worse for it.

Because of your apathy, Tim Eyman’s latest creation, I-960, passed and state government will not be able to raise new revenue. Not that this state needs money right, what with our well funded schools and our perfect infrastructure! Speaking of schools, Simple Majority failed, so many will continue to slide into disrepair.

And, of course, Prop 1 failed miserably, meaning that repairs to some of our worst roads will not happen nor will we see light rail expansion anytime soon. And no, hippies, we will not see a light-rail-only proposal. Quick! What do Sacramento, St. Louis, San Jose and LOS freaking ANGELES have in common? They all have better mass transit than Seattle. Something to be proud of, huh?

Election night started out good for progressives. Back east, in bleeding heart VIRGINIA, the Democrats captured the State Senate. The Blue Wave then swept westward, sacking the corrupt Republican governor of pinko KENTUCKY. Next, the Wave turned south, where the Democrats grabbed the Senate chamber in the radical leftist state of mf-ing MISSISSIPPI! Then, in ultra-liberal UTAH, a school voucher initiative was crushed. That’s right Seattle, the Merry Mormon state did a better job fighting the conservative agenda than you! The progressive tide hit a wall of ignorance and apathy when it entered Washington.

I’m considering moving back to Portland—the people there are much more engaged than here. Not only does the city have the most strip clubs and parks in the nation, it also has a terrific transit system. Plus, Oregon has no sales tax and all of its beaches are public.

Keep napping, Seattle. I hope you all enjoy your next governor, Mr. anti- SCHIP, anti choice Dino Rossi.

Eric Koszyk

All of the stoners I know voted on Tuesday—ahem—but I can appreciate Eric’s sense of frustration. It seems to me, though, that is voter turnout is important to liberal, progressive measures like Simple Majority or transit initiatives, the Powers Dat Be might not wanna put those sorts of things on the ballot during off-year elections.

Today in Bizarre Myspace Advertising

posted by on November 8 at 11:54 AM


Fascinating Reading from Outer Space

posted by on November 8 at 11:31 AM


Hello citizens of the Slogosphere: I’m out sick today (cough cough, hack hack, whine whine) and won’t be doing much slogging. But I had to share this link sent to me by one Robert Urbanek, a California-based writer and “spiritual detective” who uses “dreams, symbols and synchronicity [to] reveal the secrets of the cosmos and the destiny of myself and humanity.”

I was drawn into Urbanek’s website by its title——and Ms. Harding’s previous life as a presidential assassin indeed gets expansive coverage:

Tonya Harding assassinated John F. Kennedy in her previous life as Lee Harvey Oswald. Both Oswald and his victim, President Kennedy, have returned in this life as figure skaters Tonya Harding and Nancy Kerrigan. Consider the evidence of reincarnation. Both Tonya Harding and Lee Harvey Oswald have the letters “Har” in their names. Both of their victims were Irish Catholics from Massachusetts whose last names began with the letters “Ke”: John F. Kennedy and Nancy Kerrigan, and both were attacked in cities beginning with the letter “D”: Dallas and Detroit.

Tonya Harding is just the tip of the iceberg. The intersection of politics, dreams, and Hollywood is another major motif. Here’s Urbanek on 9/11:

To understand why al-Qaeda appeared, at least subconsciously, to follow the script of the movie Independence Day, we need to understand the symbolism of both the movie and the phenomenon of alien abductions….[E]vidence points to one conclusion. The “aliens” are the spirits of aborted fetuses who have come back to “haunt” us. They are forcing people to share the humiliating and painful experience of being aborted.

Urbanek also often dreams about TV characters, and seems to have an unfortunate crush on Hitler. Sometimes these themes intermingle:

In Episode 73 of Seinfeld, aired November 18, 1993, Jerry recalls a sickening synchronicity.

Jerry: I haven’t vomited in thirteen years.
Elaine: Get out!
Jerry: Not since June 29, 1980.
Elaine: You remember the date?
Jerry: Yes, because my previous vomit was also on June 29 … 1972.

My birthday falls on June 29. Perhaps this episode was an omen that I would write material, like my Hitler article, that would make Jews want to throw up.


When Psycho Priests Attack—-Conan O’Brien!

posted by on November 8 at 11:30 AM

If history teaches us anything at all, and it doesn’t, it’s that Catholic Priests, among all priests, cannot be trusted with three things: cute redheaded boys, the key to the communion wine, and any sort of real authority whatsoever. It is the first of these that concerns us at this juncture, as it has been reported and/or alleged that one Father Ajemian of Boston has developed a psychotic obsession/dirty old man crush on the very redheaded and boyish Conan O’Brien!

A report:

“David Ajemian, a Boston priest, was arrested last week while trying to get into a taping of NBC’s “Late Night with Conan O’Brien.” Father Ajemian has allegedly been sending the TV host “threatening emails, postcards, and letters” for over a year.”

The big mean priest is allegedly under psychiatric evaluation at this moment, and he faces the very serious charges of aggravated harassment and stalking. Jesus could not be reached for comment. As usual.


Out of One Election into Another: Gregoire Slightly Ahead of Rossi.

posted by on November 8 at 11:27 AM

The UW did a poll on Gov. Christine Gregoire vs. Dino Rossi late last month. “If the election were held today…”

Here’s what they found:

Gregoire 46.8%
Rossi 42.4%
Libertarian 2.2%
Undecided 7.3%
Other 1.2%

Meanwhile, Gregoire has a 12 percent advantage west of the Cascades. Rossi has a 16 percent advantage east of the Cascades.

The poll also found that Gregoire has a 63 percent approval rating, which seems weird given how close Rossi’s on her heels.

Here’s the explanation. That 63 percent approval is broken down like this: 25 percent strongly approve, 38 percent somewhat approve, 14 percent somewhat disapprove, 16 percent strongly disapprove, 6 percent don’t know. So, the researchers explain, her support is soft.

Indeed, last year they had her “strong approval” at 28.

Today The Stranger Suggests

posted by on November 8 at 11:00 AM

Dance Night

Club Pop at Chop Suey

Seattle’s best 18-plus dance night has been killing it too hard to stay a monthly event. So, starting tonight, Club Pop goes fortnightly. To celebrate, they’re bringing in NYC genre-masher Drop the Lime and Atlanta electro BAPE-ster Le Castle Vania. Resident DJs Colby B and Glitterpants will warm things up. The beats will be hot, the crowd will be hotter, and Club Pop will be kicking your ass twice as often from now on. (Chop Suey, 1325 E Madison St, 324-8000. 9 pm, $10, 18+.)


Talking, Singing

People Talking and Singing at Town Hall

We are all good at different things. Some of us are very good at music (Rosie Thomas, Geologic of Blue Scholars). Some of us are very good at writing (Dave Eggers). Some of us are very good at writing about music (Sasha Frere-Jones). Some of us are very good at being funny (Eugene Mirman, Todd Barry). When has so much good been in one place, in support of such a good cause (826 Seattle)? John Roderick, who isn’t good at anything, hosts. See interview, page 59. (Town Hall, 1119 Eighth Ave, 7:30 pm, $35–$100, all ages.)

  • More Stranger Suggests for this week »
  • An Inconvient (Electoral) Truth

    posted by on November 8 at 10:57 AM

    Posted by Ryan S. Jackson

    Remember how Global Warming was once described by the Republican chairman of the Senate environment committee as a lurid plot by “George Soros, the Hollywood elitists, the far left environmentalists on the committee that I chair—all of them want us to believe the science is settled and it’s not.”

    Well. Now it turns out that fickle independents (and some Republican voters) are threatening to desert the party if Republicans don’t change their stance on Global Warming legislation:

    In a presentation similar to ones provided to congressional leaders on both sides of the aisle in recent days, Ayres illustrates how independents — who were responsible for ousting the GOP majority in 2006 — are unmistakably supportive of swift action to cut carbon emissions and require cuts in carbon dioxide emissions by cars, factories and power plants.

    Ayres seemed most surprised that independents and, to a lesser extent, Republicans wanted the U.S. to act even if China and India, two big polluters with rapidly growing economies, did not.

    The swing district independent voters said they were much more likely to support a candidate who votes to cut carbon emissions.

    Images for “Proust In Central District”

    posted by on November 8 at 10:37 AM

    Image one:


    Framed by the window of my apartment’s bedroom is a cluster of townhouses that are under construction. I have no idea of the exact day or moment that these unfinished townhouses entered the view of my window; nor do I have an idea of the house or building they’re replacing. I have no idea why I have no idea of what was there before.

    Image two:


    A block away from my apartment on 26th Avenue South and South Jackson Street stands a brand-new cluster of townhouses. This time last year, a small house stood in this place. It was white, fenceless, and gloomy. Its front yard was a mess of wild grass and dead leaves. A deaf satellite dish stood on the right side of its rotting roof. People lived in this sad place, but they never left or entered it. The only noise that came from the home was the bark of a dog that never encountered the world beyond the black bars on the windows.

    As for this image, image three:


    This building refuses to go and to work. It just wants to be a building; a place for nothing; a space for space.

    Shades of Sharkansky?

    posted by on November 8 at 10:30 AM

    Remember the whole Sharkansky vs. his waitress controversy?

    Well, here’s another reminder to public and semi-public figures that your bad tips (or allegations that you’re a bad tipper) are only a click away.

    A waitress in Iowa whom Hillary Clinton met at a restaurant, and then referred to in a campaign speech, complained to NPR that Clinton didn’t leave a tip.

    “I don’t think she understood at all what I was saying,” Esterday said, adding, “I mean, nobody got left a tip that day …”

    But, a reminder to finger-pointing waitresses: A refutation might also be only a click away. Turns out Clinton did leave a tip, and a big one. Via Ben Smith:

    Clinton spokesman Phil Singer says, “The campaign spent $157 and left a $100 tip at the Maid-Rite Restaurant.” Sounds like Esterday and her employers may need to work something out. [First Read confirms Singer’s version. And ABC fingers a culprit: her manager! Another blow struck for working people…]

    ALSO: FLASHBACK (sort of) to a very thinly sourced Washington Times story from 2000: “Cheap Hillary stiffs a single mom.” Somehow, it’s a very appealing storyline…

    Might this be a moment when Sharkansky feels a pang of sympathy for the Democratic front-runner?

    Re: Café au Laid

    posted by on November 8 at 9:41 AM

    “It is about time to use an Ethiopian flavour for beautiful Ethiopian girls,” said Dereje Alemu, 19, a university student.
    Now that we are aware of these airy words, amorous words that arrive like an aromatic whiff from the wonderland of the African mind, we must not meet the end of today without seeing at least one sample of the many “beautiful Ethiopian girls” that are presently in this world of our making and taking. Picture%207.jpg The name of this exquisite human being is Liya Kebede.

    Café au Laid

    posted by on November 8 at 9:00 AM

    Doctors have long argued about the health effects of coffee, but its reputation seems likely to receive a boost thanks to a flavoured condom that aims to encourage safer sex in Ethiopia. Around 300,000 of the coffee condoms were sold in a week when they were launched in September, according to the US charity DKT International.

    It hopes to tap into Ethiopia’s coffee mania as a means to tackle high rates of HIV in the country, which is said to have invented the drink.

    The dark brown condoms are made to smell like Ethiopia’s popular macchiato, an espresso with a generous amount of cream and sugar.

    “It is about time to use an Ethiopian flavour for beautiful Ethiopian girls,” said Dereje Alemu, 19, a university student.

    Thanks to Slog tipper Kid Icarus.

    You’re Welcome, Tim

    posted by on November 8 at 8:40 AM

    I was out of the office yesterday, blogging from a secret, undisclosed location. And Josh and Erica C. Barnett were out too. So we weren’t around to greet Tim Burgess when he dropped by around 3 PM. Said Stranger published Tim Keck in an email to all three of us…

    Burgess stopped by to thank you guys.

    Hm. I’m not so sure. I think Burgess stopped by to take away our abortions and gays.

    But if he did stop by to thank us, well, I’m glad that Tim recognizes that he owes everything—everything—to the Stranger. Without our endorsement he wouldn’t have pounded David Della by nearly 30 percentage points. No doubt council-member-elect Venus Velázquez is on her way to the office right not to thank us for our endorsement too.

    Spokane’s Big Gay Extortion Ring

    posted by on November 8 at 7:33 AM


    It’s beginning to look like Richard Curtis wasn’t Cody Castagna’s only victim. KOMO reports

    Richard Curtis, the state lawmaker who resigned amid a sex scandal, may be the latest victim in a string of men who have been targeted by a team of extortionists.

    Cody Castagna has adamently denied blackmailing Curtis. But after days of investigating, police said Castanaga is a part of a group who went after the now-former state representative.

    Spokane police detectives released surveillance photo of a man who they said went to the front desk of the Davenport Hotel, asked for an envelope and walked away with Curtis’ money. Police have only identified the man as a friend of Castagna who took part in the extortion….

    Police said Castagna may be part of a larger group that targets gay men for extortion. In Curtis’ case, the group designated a flower pot at a Spokane part as the drop-off point for the remaining $800.

    Detectives believe the group has done this before.

    “There were multiple threats and payoffs,” said Sgt. Joe Peterson. “In this instance it seems like it was not the first time and we’ve been told by other people it’s not the first time the suspects have done this type of thing.”

    In the original police report it indicates that Cody made the calls, one man picked up the first $200 Curtis left for Castagna at the front desk of the Davenport Tower, another man picked up the $800 Curtis left in a flower pot on a bridge, and another man disposed of Curtis’ wallet. It sounded like a conspiracy to me. And if you’re going to run an extortion ring picking off closeted gay men, Spokane would be a good place to do it.

    The police picked up one of Castagna’s crew at the beginning of the investigation, and that kid said he wasn’t going to take a fall for Castagna. He’s probably agreed to testify against Castagna and others. It looks like Castagna will be brought up on charges sometimes soon, and may be heading back to prison.

    KOMO update via Towleroad.

    The Morning News

    posted by on November 8 at 7:29 AM

    Pakistan: Gen. Pervez Musharraf announced that parliamentary elections will be held before February 15, and that he will give up his military uniform before then to run as a civilian. The White House is cautiously optimistic—a sentiment the opposition party might share if 500 of its members weren’t rounded up and arrested during Musharraf’s announcement.

    Mercenaries: A February Blackwater shooting incident was given only a cursory investigation by the U.S government. “It’s really surprising that Blackwater is still out there killing people,” said Mohammed Jasim, Iraqi Media Network’s deputy director. “This was absolutely a provoked incident,” said Blackwater spokeswoman Anne E. Tyrrell.

    More Elections: In an attempt to end domestic unrest, Georgia president Mikheil Saakashvili has announced a special presidential election for January 5. The move knocks a year off his presidency.

    Roofies for Tots: 4.5 million Chinese-made Aqua Dots bead toys have been recalled due to a coating that, once consumed, becomes GHB.

    Blackhawk Down: Five dead, five injured after a U.S. Blackhawk helocopter crashed in northern Italy.

    Supporting the Troops: According to a Veterans Affairs Department report, veterans make up 1/4 of the homeless population in the United States.

    God Will Fix It: Georgia Gov. Sonny Perdue has urged the state’s citizens to pray in order to ease the state’s drought.

    Progress, Kinda: The House passed the Employment Non-Discrimination Act yesterday. It now faces a vote in the Senate, then a veto from President Bush.

    Red Country: The national debt has reached a record of $9 trillion.

    Big Brother: A former tech for AT&T says the company gave the federal government access to all web and phone traffic.

    Student Scandal: UW student Amanda Knox told Italian authorities she was in the next room while her roommate was murdered. “The only thing I can say is that at a certain point I heard Meredith screaming,” she said. “I was scared and put my hands over my ears. I can’t remember anything else…I was in shock, but I could imagine what was going on.”

    Over the Yellow Line: A Bethel School District bus driver has been held after pot and a handgun were found on her bus. Just six years ago, the same driver was called a hero for saving the lives of 22 children after an accident.

    Moving On: Now that Proposition 1 has gone kablooey, state officials are working on a plan for a new 520 bridge.

    Patty Has a Spine: Sen. Patty Murray will oppose the nomination of Michael Mukasky for U.S. attorney general.

    Moneyball: The Seattle Mariners have signed a 12-year contract with Fox Sports Northwest. The deal is rumored to be worth $400 million.

    Boris Yeltsin’s Greatest Hits…

    “What the Heck is the NSA doing here?”

    posted by on November 8 at 6:00 AM

    AT&T whistle blower Mark Klein, a retired AT&T technician who has gone public with his inside knowledge about the NSA’s surveillance program, says AT&T was providing the NSA with user data from “the whole Internet.”

    Klein’s allegation contradicts the Bush Administration’s claims that NSA surveillance was focused on international traffic. Klein’s claims also indicate that AT&T was handing over Internet traffic data from other telecom companies, without the consent or knowledge of those companies.

    The Washington Post reports:

    “This splitter was sweeping up everything, vacuum-cleaner-style,” he said. “The NSA is getting everything. These are major pipes that carry not just AT&T’s customers but everybody’s.”

    One of Klein’s documents listed links to 16 entities, including Global Crossing, a large provider of voice and data services in the United States and abroad; UUNet, a large Internet provider in Northern Virginia now owned by Verizon; Level 3 Communications, which provides local, long-distance and data transmission in the United States and overseas; and more familiar names such as Sprint and Qwest. It also included data exchanges MAE-West and PAIX, or Palo Alto Internet Exchange, facilities where telecom carriers hand off Internet traffic to each other.

    “I flipped out,” he said. “They’re copying the whole Internet. There’s no selection going on here. Maybe they select out later, but at the point of handoff to the government, they get everything.”

    Klein was in DC yesterday lobbying Congress to oppose a bill that would grant immunity to telecom companies that assisted the NSA’s illegal wiretapping by handing over customers data without a warrant. They were just following government orders, the logic goes, and they shouldn’t have to face lawsuits like this one.

    Yesterday, Connecticut Democrat and Presidential candidate Sen. Chris Dodd, who is battling the Senate bill, released this YouTube interview with Klein:

    Mr. Savage Goes to (Eastern) Washington

    posted by on November 8 at 5:25 AM


    Over the weekend, Dan Savage got on a plane and checked into the Spokane hotel where fallen Republican lawmaker Richard Curtis stayed two weekends ago. Richard Curtis? Maybe this will jog your memory: nylon rope, $1,000-dollar bareback sex, women’s lingerie, an alleged gay prostitute, doctor’s toys, money left under a flower pot on the Washington Street Bridge—but anyway! The hotel. What’s the hotel like?

    The lobby, my God, the lobby.

    “Everlasting Love,” an early disco hit, is booming over the sound system. The walls and floors of the L-shaped room are covered in beige and tan marble. Faux-Victorian chandeliers dangle from the ceiling. Huge bronze elephant heads with gleaming brass tusks top every column, stained-glass panels with giraffe motifs enclose the bar area, and overstuffed chairs and banquettes are upholstered in black-and-tan leopard-print velvet. It looks like all the furniture has been upholstered with Siegfried and Roy’s old thongs.

    There’s some trouble getting the room I requested—968. When I made the reservation yesterday, I was told that my room request was no problem. But today, the room is “off-line,” the receptionist informs me. A pair of stained-glass tigers stares down at me from the wall behind her. The receptionist is blond and perky, and she doesn’t seem to suspect anything. She sets about trying to get the room back online for me and invites me to have a drink in the hotel bar—where the waiter is wearing a zebra-striped apron—while she works on the problem. When I return to the reception desk 15 minutes later, a noticeably cooler receptionist informs me that the room I wanted will be off-line for the “duration of my stay,” which is only one night…

    What Mr. Savage discovers about Mr. Curtis hasn’t been written about anywhere else. Continue reading it here.

    ALSO IN THIS WEEK’S PRINT EDITION: Charles Mudede on what the Central District has to do with Proust (the author of a book Mudede mentions in town this week); Erica C. Barnett on what could make the Metro system a whole lot better; an interview with Dave Eggers and John Roderick; a bunch of intrepid reporting about happy hours (including the best first sentence Lindy West has ever written: “When I’m at a bar in the early evening, I generally have three things on my mind: gin, fried foods, and flirting with bartenders (also, I will accept nachos)”; and Dear Science on whether there’s a scientific way to tell if your girlfriend’s faking her orgasms.

    Plus loads of other stuff.

    Good morning!

    Wednesday, November 7, 2007

    Float Softly, Carry a Big Stick.

    posted by on November 7 at 8:35 PM



    Offered Without Comment

    posted by on November 7 at 8:01 PM

    Really, what is there left to say?

    Millions of Chinese-made toys have been pulled from shelves in North America and Australia after scientists found they contain a chemical that converts into a powerful “date rape” drug when ingested. Two children in the U.S. and three in Australia were hospitalized after swallowing the beads.

    Well there’s this, I guess: Republicans are always dreaming about a marketplace free of regulation. The genius of the market, self-regulating industries, buyer beware, etc. And this is what you get. Date rape toys.

    What Are You Doing?

    posted by on November 7 at 6:11 PM

    So today in office Eli Sanders wanted me to go ask this kid what he was doing. He’d been kneeling on the sidewalk painting a pair of pants and a t-shirt, pretty much all day. Here’s his explanation:

    My main question is, what would happen if some graffiti kid went and tagged that wall tonight? Would he fail his assignment? Would he start over? Sounds like an awfully long process. Oh, how I miss art school. Wait, no I don’t.

    If you want to cheer him on, throw a tomato, or just take a picture - he’ll be back, Thursday, at 11:00 a.m. Look for him on 11th Avenue, between Pike and Pine Streets. That is, *if* you can even see him.

    ENDA Passes the US House

    posted by on November 7 at 5:25 PM

    That’s the Employment Non-Discriminatin Act,” which would protect gays, lesbians, bisexuals, and straights from employment discrimination. Barney Frank’s speech is pretty amazing.

    The vote was 235-184, with 35 Republicans voting with Dems. Oh, and apparently there’s been a huge controversy in Gayland over the inclusion or exclusion of trans folks from ENDA. Anyone been following that?

    John Aravosis at Americablog is doing great work tracking this bill—hell, moving this bill—and following/driving the debate about it.

    Oh, and Rep. John Lewis’ speech is terrific.

    Maybe he could go on tour with Barack Obama?

    “Here Are Our Guests.”

    posted by on November 7 at 4:55 PM

    Frightening stuff in the country of Georgia today, as the country’s opposition television station was stormed by special police forces. Thanks to the YouTube era, you might find yourself giving a shit. Watch the last seconds of their broadcast today—nothing violent, just chilling:

    The undubbed version, in which you can hear this man’s (and his coworkers’) utter panic, can be seen here. More on the station’s raiding here. More on the general insanity here.

    Flickr Photo of the Day

    posted by on November 7 at 4:36 PM

    Kueven, is this that octopus in the Seattle Aquarium that’s rumored to sneak out of its tank at night, cruise around, and return before dawn?


    From the Stranger’s Flickr aquarium

    3000 Centrifuges

    posted by on November 7 at 4:35 PM


    As Brad linked to in today’s news, Iran announced it is now enriching Uranium on an industrial scale.

    But Wednesday’s claim appeared to go further, with Ahmadinejad’s words and the tone and setting of his Wednesday speech suggesting he meant all 3,000 were running.

    The number 3,000 is the commonly accepted figure for a nuclear enrichment program that is past the experimental stage and can be used as a platform for a full industrial-scale program that could churn out enough enriched material for dozens of nuclear weapons, should Iran chose to go the route.

    As many of the news reports point out, the same centrifuges can be used to make a bunch of weakly enriched power plant fuel—aww, environmental—or a small amount of bomb-grade Uranium highly enriched for U-235—aww, we’re all gonna die; invade!

    Iran claims the enrichment is for nuclear power applications only. I say it doesn’t matter. Almost all nuclear power plants produce Plutonium-239 as a waste product. If you—angry, scary nation full of non-Christians—want to build a bomb quickly, reprocessing used power plant fuel to extract Plutonium is the far easier path to take. Just ask North Korea.

    I’m certain this story will be used to beat the drums of war. My odds on bet is the only people to be irradiated, suffer or perish from the enriched Iranian Uranium will be Iranians.

    A wonkier explanation follows after the jump.

    Continue reading "3000 Centrifuges" »

    And About That Guy…

    posted by on November 7 at 4:10 PM

    If you were watching our test of this new live-blogging gizmo, you heard mention of a guy outside The Stranger offices, rumored to be cute and in the process of somehow camouflaging himself to blend in with the graffiti on a nearby building.

    The live-blog had to end for safety reasons (a whiplash-inducing glitch) before I was able to drop in a promised picture of the guy in question. Here’s the picture, from Kelly O, who says she has a short video of this mysterious young man and his project coming soon…


    Savage Love Letter of the Day

    posted by on November 7 at 4:02 PM

    I am a college freshman at a college not in my hometown. In high school I never truly rolled with the popular crowd. I was a more of a loner and a background character. During the college school year I have redefined people’s perceptions of me and have been very close gaining “cool” status in my dorm. Just recently, one of my new friends inquired if I have seen the new video on the web. I immediately, in a half joking way, asked if it was porno. He assured me with some giggles that it wasn’t porno. Immediately my new friend and a gang of my recently created friends insisted that they all go to my computer and watch it. I grew increasingly suspicious that I was not going to enjoy whatever it was that they were about to show me. When they got to my computer my friend logged on to a website which was obviuosly a porn site, all while assuring me it wasn’t porn and showed me a video of feces porn involving two girls with a cup literally eating shit and later throwing up on each other. The crowd which had followed me into my room found it hilarious while I just found it twisted and disgusting. I felt I had just been hazed to be accepted. I’m still disgusted and wondering what kind of friends I’m making. I’m not militantly against porn in general I’m just disturbed by this one. Am I making the right kinds of guy friends? Is it okay to loathe guys who watch these types of porn videos? Truly Troubled Young Lad

    I haven’t seen the porn video in question, but I’ve heard all about it. If it’s any comfort, TTYL, a lot of scat porn is created with shit substitutes. Someone is given, oh, six or seven thousands enemas, until the water runs back out clean, followed by a chocolate pudding enema and only then do the cameras start rolling. Still, gross. And your friends? Well, they sound like typical college freshman to me—immature, terrified of women, and obsessed with poop.

    Against Pink

    posted by on November 7 at 3:30 PM

    By Germaine Greer.

    (Thanks, ArtsJournal.)

    Today in Line Out

    posted by on November 7 at 3:16 PM

    Music Loses to Moguls: Chris Rock and Jonathan Zwickel on music becoming business first, art second.

    Speaking of Business: Sub Pop’s digital store is open and ready for yours.

    A Poll: Vote on which album title you think is more offensive than Nas’ Nigger. (Currently, Limp Bizkit is in the lead.)

    Keep Smiling…: Terry Miller on the Danish duo Laid Back.

    Tonight in Music: Feist and Dengue Fever.

    RIP: Ruff Gemz is laid to rest tonight at the Baltic Room.

    Music News: Britney gets booted from number one, Michael Jackson might be losing Neverland, Pete Dougherty relapses on YouTube, and more, more, more.

    Confirmed: My Bloody Valentine are reuniting.

    “Alec Eiffel” by the Pixies: It’s a really good song.

    More For Tonight: Donte Parks recommends Konkrete Jungle and Bonkers.

    Also, how fucking cute are tree kangaroos??


    For Anyone Who Wants To Know What It Would Be Like To Be In A Room With Robert Irwin

    posted by on November 7 at 3:12 PM

    I linked Monday to the review of Irwin’s new show in San Diego by PORT’s Arcy Douglass, who emailed me this description:

    You might enjoy this and I did not know where to include in the review so it was dropped. During the media preview, Irwin is giving a short lecture on the background of his work. He goes on to say that the questions are always more important than the answers and a few minutes later asks for questions by the audience.

    Even though there only 40 people in the room, if someone asked a question, Irwin would leave the pedestal to be closer to the audience and make direct eye contact with the person who asked the question the whole time. Keep in mind that if you ask Mr. Irwin a question that you will proabably get a 10 minute answer. Proximity and what he would call being “tuned in” is as important in a conversation as it is in his work.


    In/Visible Is Up, and It Asks: How Well Do You Know This Woman?

    posted by on November 7 at 3:05 PM


    Because she is your art museum director.

    Final Meeting on Broadway Mega-Development

    posted by on November 7 at 3:02 PM

    If you replaced the abandoned QFC building on Broadway with a one-block long piece of dog shit, the site would be markedly improved. This is how it has looked for the past couple years.

    Photo by Thomas Francis

    A monolith of despair. But Driscoll Architects plans to replace the entire block—including the vacant Bartell Drugs, Taco Bell and apartments around back—with two mixed-use buildings ranging from 40 to 65 feet that include 295 residential units, 365 underground parking spots, and 26,000 square feet of retail space. Here’s a rendering of the Broadway side, between E Republican and E Mercer Streets.


    And here’s what it would look like from the Harvard Ave side.


    Love this drawing and don’t want ‘em to change thing? Think this is an aesthetic abomination made of flimsy materials? Tonight’s your last chance to speak up. A design-review meeting for the mega-development will be held tonight, Wednesday, November 7 at 8 p.m., in the Multi-Purpose Room at Yesler Community Center: 917 E Yesler Way. (And yes, it’s stupid that the design review meeting is a mile-and-a-half from a site with a public library across the street.)

    “It’s a full block, that’s huge,” says Lisa Rutzick of the Department of Planning and Development. “Luckily a lot of the neighborhood groups involved have been in attendance, but it hasn’t drawn a huge crowd.” 26 people attended the first meeting and 16 went to the second.

    In addition to public comment, this meeting is Driscoll’s opportunity to show the design board how they will change their snazzy design proposal (.pdf) in response to issues raised in a board report (.pdf), such as widening the sidewalks and optimizing the courtyard between the buildings. Neeru Sharma of Driscoll says the firm has modified the plan, but, “I can’t release them until the public meeting.”

    So, even if you don’t live on Capitol Hill, you should go (I can’t make it). We’ll have to live with it for a long time. Rutzick says, “If everything goes smoothly they could have their master use permit by end of the year.”

    Testing, Testing, 123… (Or: A Happy Unintended Consequence of Schmader and Showgirls)

    posted by on November 7 at 2:55 PM

    True story: One day a web developer in Toronto was forced by a friend of his to watch Showgirls. He hated the movie, but was inspired by the (indeed truly inspiring) David Schmader narration option that came on the Showgirls DVD.

    He thought: Way to stretch the potential of a technology! And then he thought: Well, liveblogging an event-in-progress (a speech, a debate, a sports match) is a lot like commenting on a movie-in-progress. And why does liveblogging have to be so clunky anyway, with all that refreshing on the part of the blogger and the audience? Couldn’t it display more like an IM chat?

    It can, it turns out. After my liveblogging of the Democratic debate last week, this web developer wrote me, told me about the Schmader connection, and suggested we check out his new web-based liveblogging application.

    We’ve checked it out, and now we’re testing it out. If it works well, I’ll use this for my liveblogging of the next Democratic debate on Nov. 15. Help me put it through its paces, please—there’s a feedback function where you can message me and I can incorporate your comments into the liveblog if they’re worthy. Here we go…

    On the Cover

    posted by on November 7 at 2:41 PM

    Just in case you weren’t aware, here’s more evidence that Seattle’s own Jim Woodring is one of the greatest living comic artists. Check out more of his art here and here.


    Why Can’t Congressional Democrats Abstain From Stupidity?

    posted by on November 7 at 2:30 PM

    You would have thought that this April headline would have shamed the president and Congress out of pouring money into abstinence “education.” No such luck. Well, another study is out, this one from the National Campaign to Prevent Teen and Unplanned Pregnancy, and they’re telling us something we already know: abstinence-only sex-ed doesn’t work.

    Programs that focus exclusively on abstinence have not been shown to affect teenager sexual behavior, although they are eligible for tens of millions of dollars in federal grants, according to a study released by a nonpartisan group that seeks to reduce teen pregnancies.

    “At present there does not exist any strong evidence that any abstinence program delays the initiation of sex, hastens the return to abstinence or reduces the number of sexual partners” among teenagers, the study concluded.

    The study found that while abstinence-only efforts appear to have little positive impact, more comprehensive sex education programs were having “positive outcomes” including teenagers “delaying the initiation of sex, reducing the frequency of sex, reducing the number of sexual partners and increasing condom or contraceptive use.”

    So bullshit, religious-indoctination masquerading as sex-ed doesn’t stop or slow teenage sexual activity. But comprehensive, realistic sex-ed does—and it increases the use of contraceptives, which means fewer abortions. We shouldn’t expect the religious wackadoodles to accept reality—not while evolution and an “old” earth are still keep them up nights—but surely Democrats, who criticized abstinence education as an expensive waste before taking power in ‘06, aren’t having it.


    Wrong. Congressional Dems are preparing to throw more money at abstinence-only sex-ed—more money than George W. Bush asked for.

    A spending bill before Congress for the Department of Health and Human Services would provide $141 million in assistance for community-based, abstinence-only sex education programs, $4 million more than what President Bush had requested.

    We really do need a third party in this country—a real one, not one that exists solely to milk Ralph Nader’s prostate once every four years.

    The Park

    posted by on November 7 at 2:24 PM

    The place to be:
    -1.jpg Visit Freeway Park today, before dusk. The autumn leaves are red and gold. The concrete is wet and cold.

    The Election Night Party Video

    posted by on November 7 at 2:07 PM

    In case you missed it - I posted it at two o’clock in the frickin’ morning - here’s the video we made at last night’s election parties. The inimitable Ari Spool interviews Bill LaBoard (pro Prop-1), Bruce Harrell, Tim Burgess, Bill Sherman, Mike O’Brien (no on Prop-1) and there’s a very special karaoke song dedication at David Della’s party… ENJOY.

    And this is just the Beginning

    posted by on November 7 at 1:48 PM

    So, like a totally scientific survey today has Chicago beating Seattle out in the category of most-caffeinated American city. Hence, a week from Sunday when the Bears face off against the Seahawks in a re-scheduled-out-of-prime-time
    because-the-Bears-suck game, prepare to lose.

    Sure, Seattle is the city that drinks the most coffee, but it’s energy drinks and chocolate that win football games. Or so I seem to recall. And has any Savage mentioned lately that Chicago has a kick-ass public transportation system (for the time being. . . )? Seattle just keeps losing in so many ways.

    Now, back to your regularly scheduled local election results and dope smoking.

    Someone Needs to Spend a Little Time on

    posted by on November 7 at 1:39 PM

    A new Slog reader is very, very, very angry. No, not angry. Disappointed. Just like mom. Anyway:

    I’m new to looking through the SLOG (as in only a couple of days) and I’m already disgusted by you people. Permit me a little diatribe here:

    For all the uber-liberal claims and pompous “we’re the most open-minded people around” speak I hear out of the vast majority of you I have yet once read anything even remotely approaching fair or balanced (yes, I chose those words purposefully for their irony).

    I am truly disgusted by the unabashed filth, slander and hate-speak out of your collective mouths. There is no intelligent discussion or legitimate criticism on here at all—it’s complete trash. And by trash I mean exactly that; majoratively untrue garbage slung at anything resembling moderate or god forbid, Republican. Partner that with the absolutely blind defense of anyone whose politics you agree with and I see the most stunningly closed-minded people I’ve ever encountered, and I’ve lived in many places in this country you people would claim to be backwards.

    Has it not ocurred to you all that your hate for others and your unwillingness to accept other viewpoints (or even listen to them without screaming obsenities) is exactly what you claim so vehemently of the other side of the political spectrum? You should all be ashamed of yourselves for perverting the world with all of this bile.

    This was tacked on to my post about Pat Robertson endorsing Rudy Giuliani because, I’m guessing, I called Robertson a “Talibangelist.” Robertson, of course, calls me & mine the bringers of hurricanes, the causers of 9/11s, the offenders of God, wocka, wocka, wocka. Imaginary God forbid that I should suggest that Robertson is an old, withered, corrupt religious bigot.

    Nappy Halloween!

    posted by on November 7 at 1:38 PM

    I don’t know what’s more troubling. That an employee of the Department of Homeland Security—which is constantly under fire for singling out people of color at airports—thought it would be a good idea to wear blackface, fake dreadlocks, and a prison uniform to an agency Halloween party or that three of his managers—including Julie L. Myers, assistant secretary of the Immigration and Customs Enforcement division—awarded him the prize for “most original” costume.

    In Other Washington Counties, Seattle’s Influence Shows

    posted by on November 7 at 1:31 PM

    About a month back, I wrote this story about a Seattle organization called The Washington Bus that was going to Bellingham and knocking on doors for a progressive county council candidate up there named Ken Mann. They’ve also been driving down to Tacoma and doing the same for a candidate there named Marilyn Strickland. Today, they got to see where their efforts got them.

    In Tacoma, Strickland landed a comfortable victory of 60.75% over her opponent for the city council position, David Curry. But in Bellingham, Mann is only winning by 27 votes right now, with 50.17% of the vote. That means that any votes that the Washington Bus garnered could be helping Mann beat his opponent, incumbent Sam Crawford. It’s possible that the majority will hold for Mann, but as they continue to count votes, things could swing either way. Only 24% of Whatcom County’s vote is counted right now, but a small margin was expected—elections are regularly decided up there by less than 100 votes.

    The Tacoma race is less interesting—both candidates for the position were progressive [The Tacoma Tribune is dumb and I will never read it again, Curry is not progressive, I have been corrected by commenters], and Strickland came out of the primary with a ton of money and a resounding majority. The Washington Bus probably didn’t need to supply as much help as they did.

    Good luck to progressives up north—let’s hope the Washington Bus’ efforts were not in vain.

    Early HIV Prevention Strategies

    posted by on November 7 at 12:45 PM

    Today’s New York Times has an interesting story in the national section about gay and lesbian Muslims that have migrated to the US from Iran, Saudi Arabia, Lebanon, Palestine, and Turkey. They don’t have it easy back home, of course, thanks to their the Koran, murderously homophobic regimes in Iran and Saudi Arabia, and only slightly less murderously homophobic cultures in other Islamic countries, and adjusting to gay life in the US can be a culture shock. Still, it’s better than a stoning, an honor killing, a hanging, or a public beheading.

    And what accounts for Islam’s hostility to homosexuality? Why, early HIV prevention efforts.

    Hostility is rooted in the Koranic story of Lot, which parallels the biblical Sodom and Gomorrah. At Al-Tawhid Mosque in San Francisco, the imam, Hassan al-Jalal, a Yemeni with a short beard, printed a sheaf of Koranic verses that he said condemned homosexuals.

    “This is the main sin in Islam,” Mr. Jalal said, describing how the town housing Lot’s tribe was lifted high into the sky and then dropped, killing all in the town before they were buried under what is now the Dead Sea. “He sent the flood to clean the earth from AIDS. There were no doctors at that time, but God knew they had a virus.”

    All sects mandate capital punishment, he argued, although others differ. “Sunni, Shiite, they all agree that they have to be killed. But who does it? Not me or you, only by law.”

    Want to avoid being killed by law? Stay out of the showers!

    Muslim clerics reject being gay as biologically coded and advise anyone with homosexual stirrings to avoid temptation. They see America as rife with it given practices like open gym showers.

    Project Runway Premiere 2næt Next Wednesday

    posted by on November 7 at 12:22 PM

    You guys, I know Project Runway has trrrtlly jumped the sharq, but I was just reminded that the premiere is tonight next Wednesday. I’ve already made my predictions for final three, which necessarily precludes my initial favorites. Granted, I’ve only been reading the designer/contestant bios (which are really embarrassing, I must say: The designer/contestant bios are really embarrassing. Sorry; had to.

    I was leaning toward:


    MARION LEE. Seriously? Serious-Lee?!? That’s his name. So privileged old Texas. I should know, being neither privileged, nor old, but certainly from Texas. His hometown, Tyler, is the “Rose Capital of America.” If. You. Know. What. I. Mean.



    RAMI KASHOV. When I Gúgl his name, I’m asked “Did you mean: RAMI KASHOU. No, I think Google and I both know that I meant אהיה אשר אהיה. Though now that I’m looking at a few of his pieces from past craft projects… I mean “collections,” I might have meant תֹּועֵבָה.

    Those two have the most progressive tastes as far as favorite fashion designers, but of course that can only mean one thing—that they are going to be punished for being Conceptual and Difficult and not Designing for Real Women. Right, I’d love to see all those fake women running around wearing Totally Impossible clothing by Hussein Chalayan and Viktor & Rolf and Olivier Theyskens and their ilk. Because designing clothing for fake women is incredibly lucrative.

    WHEN YOU ARE A FASHION DESIGNER (or trying to become one on this horrible, horrible show), YOUR INSPIRATION CAN ONLY BE “Old Hollywood Glamour” and “Ladies Who Lunch” and “Jet-Setting Heiresses.”

    I should really come up with a drinking game based on those phrases. Or like, anytime someone says “simple,” “sexy,” “modern,” or “charmeuse” (which they always pronounce in the most annoying manner—[ʃaɹ ‘mus] instead of [ʃaɹ ‘møz]; and yes, I know both are correct in General American English), then everyone takes a sip of his or her Remy Ma. Blah blah blah.

    Can you guys help me come up with more Project Runway drinking game phrases?

    “These Kids”

    posted by on November 7 at 12:03 PM

    It’ll be light Slogging for me today. Catching my breath from last night

    (Although, one quick comment on the election: I’m just now realizing that liberal campaigners—and liberal news editors like me—kind of screwed up by not making more noise about Tim Eyman’s super-majority-to-raise-taxes initiative, I-960.)

    But I must post this small, inspiring story from today’s NYT about a group of students at a working class high school outside Chicago who got in trouble (maybe expelled) for staging a peaceful anti-war protest in their high school hallway.

    The parents have also asked that the district provide the students with some way to express themselves about issues like the war.

    “Who’s the next group to go off to war?” said Adam Szwarek, whose 16-year-old son, Adam, faces expulsion. “These kids. The kids do a peaceful sit-in and they’re threatened with expulsion, yet the military’s running around the school trying to recruit.”

    Re: One Pot in the New York Times

    posted by on November 7 at 11:43 AM

    In a piece about One Pot that appeared in the Stranger back in May, Charles wrote

    In March 2006, Michael’s empire vanished, and is now nothing more than a very bright memory. His marriage also went under. (Clarklewis, however, is still operated by Naomi.) The city of Portland has been on fire with gossip and rumors: How could this happen? Who was responsible? Some point at Michael, others at Naomi. But all of that is not important. Things come and go; nothing in the world is stable. Whatever the case, Michael Hebberoy—an indefatigable spirit, a dreamer, an idealist, a Platonist who wants to revolutionize public and private dining—has found the way out of Portland and made Seattle the point from which he will launch future projects.

    The Michael Hebberoy portrayed in the New York Times sounds less like a dreamer and an idealist and more like an asshole and a fraud, and places the collapse of his PDX restaurant empire squarely on his shoulders.

    Then one April day last year, he disappeared, leaving behind a wife, a ruined restaurant empire, a welter of debt and an angry herd of creditors and business partners.

    “What’s most despicable is that Michael just left,” said Tommy Habetz, the chef and a partner at Mr. Hebberoy’s Gotham Building Tavern in Portland, which closed after the crackup. “It was so immature. I had put my heart and soul into the restaurant, and to have my partner leave without a warning or a conversation about how we could fix things — it was pretty heartbreaking.”

    The end came on April 27, 2006. Mr. Hebberoy, who three months earlier had been the subject of an eight-page article in Food & Wine magazine that called him a “food provocateur,” told equity investors he could no longer make payroll for a company that had grown to 95 employees. Ripe had been hemorrhaging money, something he hadn’t told the staff, financiers and suppliers.

    The New York Times reports that Hebberoy, to his credit, sold property he owned and paid off most of his creditors. Still, dreamer or no dreamer, however brilliant One Pot is or is not, questions about how Hebberoy’s Portland restaurant empire “happened” to fall apart and who exactly was to blame are legit and we should’ve asked them.

    One Pot in the New York Times

    posted by on November 7 at 11:30 AM

    Retelling the Michael Hebberoy story:

    The article opens on a positive note:

    In Seattle, this blending of roles has stirred excitement. But many people elsewhere in the Pacific Northwest would find it uncomfortably familiar. Dinners like this were exactly how Mr. Hebberoy got his start in Portland, Ore. Those evenings generated enough good will and even national celebrity that, by the time he moved up from the underground and opened three restaurants, he almost had to turn away investors.

    But then goes into the negative side of his Portland period:

    That night, Mr. Hebberoy left Portland, and within 24 hours, the catering business and all the restaurants but Clarklewis had closed. The Hebberoys, who have a daughter, filed for divorce. When he took a trip to Mexico, he set off rumors that he was fleeing with a bag of cash. (That story, he said in an interview, was untrue.) Creditors filed suit. Portland food writers never had so much to gossip about.

    In all, it is a fair picture of his career.

    Today The Stranger Suggests

    posted by on November 7 at 11:00 AM


    ‘Jezebel’ at First Baptist Church

    Lesley Hazleton is the author of a lovely book about Jezebel, the baddest babe in the Bible. Hazleton argues that Jezebel got her terrible reputation because she did not think, look, or act like the people who wrote the Bible. Jezebel was foreign and cosmopolitan; her critics were insulated and backward. The true story of Jezebel is not that different from the story of the last presidential election: a struggle between the city and the country, crowded blue states and sparse red states. (Seattle First Baptist Church, 1111 Harvard Ave, 624-6600. 7 pm, free.) CHARLES MUDEDE

    Nepotism Watch

    posted by on November 7 at 10:59 AM

    The Swamp flags this as the underplayed story of the day:

    WASHINGTON, Nov. 6 — The inspector general of the Department of Education has said he will examine whether federal money was inappropriately used by three states to buy educational products from a company owned by Neil Bush, the president’s brother.

    Why underplayed?

    If the company sounds familiar, it may be because of a controversy that erupted in the wake of Hurricane Katrina, when Neil’s mom donated funds to the Bush-Clinton Katrina Fund, but stipulated that they had to be spent buying her son’s firm’s educational software for the Houston public schools.

    The Realm of the Senseless

    posted by on November 7 at 10:42 AM

    Bad news from Perugia, Italy:

    Student Meredith Kercher was killed for refusing violent group sex with her female flatmate and two male friends, Italian detectives said yesterday.

    Her American pal Amanda Knox, 20, allegedly broke down and confessed after she, boyfriend Raffaele Sollecito and Congolese bar owner Patrick Lumumba Diya were dramatically arrested.

    Amanda Knox?

    Meredith was studying at university and there was a university atmosphere, free and open. Lots of people came and went through her house and she was unfortunately at the crossroads when this group came together.” Yesterday it emerged that Knox, of Seattle, Washington, had penned sick stories about sexual violence on the MySpace website. One, posted last December and entitled Baby Brother, graphically describes a rape. Another tells of a model being ravaged by a man with “big rough hands”.

    The end?

    “In the end she just collapsed. What she told us helped bring the case to a close, but it was only a matter of time.” Knox, Sollecito and married dad-of-one Diya—Knox’s boss—were all led away from a police station in handcuffs.

    Question of the day?

    Does anyone know Amanda Knox? What is her story? As for Patrice Lumumba, a progressive African leader who was murdered by one of the worst dictators of the 20th century…


    …his name is cursed.

    Pot: Good for Teenagers

    posted by on November 7 at 10:20 AM

    This ABC News headline is a little misleading:

    Swiss Study Has Some Surprises on Marijuana News: Survey suggests use of drug doesn’t impact grades, relationships

    You have to get past the similarly misleading photo caption—under a picture of what looks like a teenager smoking the biggest joint you’ve ever seen—and read the actual story before you learn that teenagers who smoke pot have as-good-or-better grades and peer relationships than kids who do not.

    In fact, those who used only marijuana were “more socially driven… significantly more likely practice sports and they have a better relationship with their peers” than abstainers, it said.

    “Moreover, even though they are more likely to skip class, they have the same level of good grades…”

    So much for all those Partnership for a Drug-Free America PSAs featuring stoned do-nothing, friendless losers wasting away on basement sofas. (But that kid’s got one hot, hot, hot loser stoner for an older brother, huh?)

    The study also shows that teenagers who use pot are also no more likely to be depressed than teenagers who don’t. Is there any bad news for teenage pot smokers? Yes: they have “a worse relationship with their parents,” parents that are probably worried about the damage their kids’ pot use is gonna do to their kids’ grades.

    Via Sullivan.

    What, No Heartbeeps?

    posted by on November 7 at 10:13 AM

    In honor of a disturbing morning, here’s a list of the most disturbing films of all time.

    (Thanks to Alternative Reel for the list, and to MetaFilter for the heads-up.)

    Straight to Video

    posted by on November 7 at 9:50 AM

    Here’s the video of Pat Robertson picking the mean son of a bitch:

    And, never forget… Here’s Robertson agreeing with Jerry Falwell that the paganists, and the abortionists, and the gays—”all of them who tried to secularize America”—were responsible for 9/11.

    See how that works? Let your followers know that you agree that legalized abortion and gay rights were responsible for 9/11, and then, a few years later, endorse a man who is for legalized abortion and gay rights, saying he’s the only person who can defend the country against the “bloodlust of Islamic terrorists.”

    Via TPM.

    Duane “Dog” Chapman Explains It All For You

    posted by on November 7 at 9:40 AM

    …and magically makes things 50 times worse.

    Despite his resentment over having to explain his use of the word “nigger,” Dog the Bounty Hunter forges on with just such an explanation, or twelve.

    He thought he was “cool enough in the black world” to drop N-bombs “brother-to-brother.”

    He also thought his son’s placenta was a deformed twin.


    Complete Election-Night Coverage

    posted by on November 7 at 9:37 AM

    The Stranger Election Control Board was up all night reporting, drinking, and Slogging while you slept. Catch up on last night’s parties, victories, defeats, candidate interviews, moonings, and the latest numbers here.

    Jesus is My Pimp Now

    posted by on November 7 at 9:05 AM


    Visit the website, purchase the tank top.


    Re: Add Denver to the List

    posted by on November 7 at 8:57 AM

    Dom’s too modest to say so, but Seattle’s I-75—which made marijuana possession the city’s lowest law-enforcement priority, making it possible for stoners to light up on their back steps without being plagued by pre-stoned paranoia—was Dom’s baby. Yesterday a law modeled on I-75 passed in Denver, as Dom has already noted this morning, just as laws modeled on I-75 have been passed in San Francisco, Missoula, and numerous other cities.

    So congrats, once again, to Dom. And it’s nice to see voters in another big, liberal city reject Seattle City Attorney Tom Carr’s idiotic fear mongering.

    Seattle City Attorney Thomas Carr, who says he is required to sit on the panel, says he hopes Denver doesn’t pass the initiative. “The panel is slanted toward proponents of the law,” Carr said. “It does not work all that well. We get yelled at a lot by people in the room. Telling police and prosecutors to look the other way on a crime is really bad policy.”

    Dominic Holden, a community representative on Seattle’s panel, says that citations and prosecutions for marijuana-related incidents declined by 50 percent a year after the initiative passed. “The law does not tell police to ignore state or federal law,” he said. “It simply tells them where on the schedule of priorities these arrests fall.”

    Although the committee cannot agree on why the numbers of marijuana arrests and prosecutions are down in Seattle, city officials have sent a letter to Denver endorsing the law as safe, effective and inexpensive.

    The Seattle group also found no evidence of an increase in marijuana use among young people, crime or adverse effects on public health.

    Oh my goodness! Poor Tom Carr gets yelled at—by uppity Seattle citizens who don’t support tossing harmless, non-violent pot smokers in jail! The nerve of those Seattle citizens! First they pass I-75—which is now law—and then they wanna see Tom Carr obey the law. Man, it’s almost as if the citizens of Seattle think they pay Carr’s salary or something.

    Tom Carr is an enormous douche. You wanna meet some folks who are really suffering, Tom? Talk to some of the hundreds of thousands of U.S. citizens that have been arrested, prosecuted, and imprisoned for marijuana possession. I’d bet they’d trade places with you in an instant. Gee, get yelled at in a meeting for subverting the law or go to prison for getting high….

    UW Student Arrested in Italy for Sex Murder of Brit Roommate

    posted by on November 7 at 8:12 AM


    Back home, those who know Amanda Knox recall an outgoing Seattle girl, a University of Washington honor student, a young woman making the most of a year studying abroad.

    None could have foreseen this: The 20-year-old from Arbor Heights placed squarely at the center of a case that’s riveted Europe—the throat-slashing slaying and rape of Knox’s female roommate.

    Police questioned Knox late last week in connection with the violent attack that bloodied her apartment in the central Italian city of Perugia. Early Tuesday, after detectives interrogated her about inconsistencies in her account, she reportedly confessed to playing a role in the slaying.

    Also under suspicion are Knox’s Italian boyfriend, Raffaele Sollecito, 23, and Congolese musician Patrick Diya Lumumba, 37, who owned the local bar where Knox worked. All three have been arrested, with charges expected later this week….
    European newspapers reported Tuesday that Knox admitted to police that she and the men sexually assaulted and killed Kercher. Italian authorities expect to charge all three with murder and participating in an act of sexual violence.

    From the Guardian:

    It has also emerged that there is a story on Ms Knox’s MySpace site about two brothers discussing the drugging and rape of a girl.


    Here’s the MySpace page for “Foxy Knoxy,”, and here’s her blog.

    Backing Torture More Important than Opposing Abortion

    posted by on November 7 at 8:04 AM

    Prominent talibangelist Pat Robertson endorses pro-abortion, pro-gay-rights, pro-torture Rudy Giuliani.

    Make no mistake–this is a coup for Mr. Giuliani’s campaign. Mr. Giuliani spoke at Regent University, the evangelical school Mr. Robertson founded, several months ago and was warmly received. The endorsement helps them quiet talk the talk that had bubbled up among Christian conservative leaders about supporting a third-party candidate if Mr. Giuliani, a supporter of abortion rights is the nominee, and bolstering his advisers’ contention that he can compete among Christian conservative voters who are dominant in early voting states like South Carolina and Iowa.

    The Morning News

    posted by on November 7 at 7:50 AM

    Election Night: Roads/Transit goes down in flames, Eyman succeeds with another boondoggle, insurance companies lose to dreaded trial lawyers, rainy day fund gets approval, schools get thumped, Venus gets bounced…scroll down for coverage of last night’s victories and defeats.

    Pakistan: Opposition leader Benazir Bhutto has called for a mass demonstration against the government’s emergency rule this Friday.

    The Biggest Loser: General Motors has posted a loss of $39 billion, its biggest ever.

    It Can Happen Anywhere: At least 7 dead after a shooting at a school in…Helsinki, Finland.

    In Bed With Bigots: Rudy Giuliani gets an endorsement from Pat Robertson.

    Drums of War: Iran has announced it has 3,000 centrifuges up and running.

    Money: Saudi Arabia, South Korea, China, Venezuela, Sudan, Iran, and Russia are all contemplating ditching the dollar.

    Spanking Dick: After republicans tried to outmaneuver democrats, an impeachment resolution against Dick Cheney stalled in the House Judiciary Committee yesterday.

    M.I.T.’s E.M.P.: Blobby architect Frank Gehry is being sued by M.I.T. for “design and construction failures” in a $300 million building.

    Ugly Americans: A University of Washington Student is being held in Italy on suspicion of the murder and sexual assault of a British student.

    Bovine From Above: In Chelan County, a wandering cow fell off a cliff, nearly killing a couple passing underneath in their car.

    Roads/Transit Defeat, Insult Upon Injury: A fresh batch of poems have arrived on Seattle’s buses.

    The Dolph Lundgren Exercises

    A Little Good News on Election Night

    posted by on November 7 at 7:48 AM

    Locally, well, the results pretty much suck. I’m sorry to see that Bill Sherman lost to that GOP hack. And while I’m thrilled Della lost—who isn’t?—I’m bummed that Burgess won. And, like I told the douches from the Sierra Club, I didn’t care if they paved all those new roads with baby mice, I wanted 50 miles of light rail. But Roads & Transit went down. Eyeman’s idiotic initiative won, schools lost, Venus’ DUI cost her the election. I could go on.

    But there’s a little good news—just not in our time zone. In Kentucky, the corrupt, sleazeball, incumbent GOP governor of Kentucky was running for reelection. In a last ditch effort to hold on to his office, Ernie Fletcher’s campaign stooped to—what else?—gay bashing. Washed up crooner Pat Boone recorded a couple of rabidly homophobic robocalls for Fletcher. Boone warned Kentucky voters that Fletcher’s Democratic opponent, Steve Beshear, would turn Kentucky into a second San Francisco.

    “Hello friends. This is Pat Boone—a fellow Kentuckian by descent from granddaddy Dan’l. I’ve always been proud of Kentucky’s stance on patriotic, military and moral issues—a great heritage. Now, as an American and a Christian I’m very concerned about the upcoming governor’s election. Ernie Fletcher is a typical Kentuckian. He’s worked long and hard for the state, its people, and its traditions. And of course he’s come under attack by political opponents. And now, he faces a man who wants his job, who has consistently supported every homosexual cause—same-sex marriage, gay adoption, special rights to gay, lesbian, bisexual even transgender individuals. The prominent gay advocacy group CFAIR just enthusiastically endorsed Beshear, knowing he’s their guy. Kentuckians have already voted to amend the state constitution to prohibit same-sex marriage. Now, do you want a governor who would like Kentucky to be another San Francisco?”

    Another San Francisco? God forbid.

    The voters in Kentucky, however, apparently liked the idea. Fletcher lost in a landslide yesterday.

    Democrat Steve Beshear, in a smashing return to Kentucky politics after more than a decade on the sidelines, won a landslide victory last night over Gov. Ernie Fletcher.

    Beshear won nearly 60 percent of the vote in defeating Fletcher, a Republican seeking to become the first member of his party to serve two terms as governor, by a margin of 18 percentage points.

    There’s good news in Virginia too.

    Add Denver to the List

    posted by on November 7 at 7:45 AM

    Last night voters in the Mile High City gave the thumbs up to Question 100 – with 55.5 percent of the vote – making marijuana possession Denver’s lowest law-enforcement priority.

    Q-100 is closely modeled after Seattle’s Initiative 75. Since I-75 passed in 2003, word of it reducing arrests sparked a series of similar proposals in cities around the country, including Oakland, San Francisco, Missoula, three cities in California that begin with “Santa,” and Eureka Spring, Arkansas. Woo, Eureka!

    Marijuana offenses were stricken from Denver’s books by voters in 2005, but under state law prosecutions continued—they actually increased. The group behind both initiatives, SAFER, hopes this measure will actually keep pot smokers out of jail. If enough cities pass stopgap measures like these, pot activists posit, a state or two will legalize marijuana.

    Get Fat

    posted by on November 7 at 7:09 AM

    All those reports about how deadly obesity is? Well… I’m off to Top Pot donuts.

    About two years ago, a group of federal researchers reported that overweight people have a lower death rate than people who are normal weight, underweight or obese. Now, investigating further, they found out which diseases are more likely to lead to death in each weight group.

    Linking, for the first time, causes of death to specific weights, they report that overweight people have a lower death rate because they are much less likely to die from a grab bag of diseases that includes Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s, infections and lung disease. And that lower risk is not counteracted by increased risks of dying from any other disease, including cancer, diabetes or heart disease.

    As a consequence, the group from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the National Cancer Institute reports, there were more than 100,000 fewer deaths among the overweight in 2004, the most recent year for which data were available, than would have expected if those people had been of normal weight.

    So… What Happened Last Night?

    posted by on November 7 at 6:27 AM

    Yesterday I dropped my absentee ballot off a polling place, went home, ate a sandwich, and went to bed. I’d been up for 48 hours straight working on a feature, and I was exhausted. I missed the election night parties, didn’t watch returns on the teevee, and didn’t bring my computer to bed with me to read Slog. So it’s 6:30 AM and I have no idea what went down last night—how’d Sherman do? Della? Burgess? Venus?

    I’m gonna find out the old fashioned way: go get the papers from the porch, sit down at the table, and read all about it.

    Election Night Parties - Watch the Video

    posted by on November 7 at 2:03 AM

    Interviews with Bill LaBoard (pro Prop-1), Bruce Harrell, Tim Burgess, Bill Sherman, Mike O’Brien (no on Prop-1) and a karaoke song from David Della’s party…

    Dan Satterberg Exit Interview

    posted by on November 7 at 12:23 AM

    Lindy here.

    The Satterberg party was still rocking out HARD when we left. Nothing much interesting happened in the second half of the night, except that Susannah Frame wouldn’t tell me who she voted for, and a bunch of young Republicans wouldn’t tell me anything at all (in all sarcasm, they admitted that they “love immigrants” and “love abortion” HA HA!). We made fun of their sweater vests and they asked us if we went to community college. Check and mate, young Republicans!

    On our way to the door, we ran into Satterberg and his shiny shirt in the crowd. (Kismet!) This was an excellent opportunity to address his earlier claim that he didn’t remember the 2000 election, which, whether or not it was relevant, was definitely annoying.

    SECB: “So did the GOP money help your campaign?”
    DS: “We got a lot of support from a lot of different people.”
    SECB: “But specifically the money from the GOP?”
    DS: “Yes, I think it helped, but [blah blah blah every little bit counts]”
    SECB: “So, now that this election’s winding down, do you remember who you voted for in 2000?”
    DS: “Honestly, it’s hazy.
    SECB: “Well, it was a pretty memorable election.”
    DS: “I remember that I voted for Anderson in 1980.”
    SECB: “Any chance you remember who you voted for in 2000?”
    DS: “I wasn’t really involved in politics until my name was on the ballot. I wasn’t affiliated with any party until I ran.”
    SECB: “So until 2007 you had no interest in politics?”
    DS: “I don’t understand the point of these questions.”
    SECB: “I just think it’s weird that a politician doesn’t remember voting in what was maybe the most memorable election in recent history. I mean, when the Supreme Court handed the election to Bush were you like, ‘Yeah!’ or were you like, ‘Aww’?”
    DS: “I just wanted it to be fair because people lost trust in the system.”
    SECB: “Was it fair?”
    DS: “I don’t understand why you’re asking me about this.”

    In conclusion, I would just like to say:

    Tuesday, November 6, 2007

    Party Crasher Report: Part Three

    posted by on November 6 at 11:51 PM

    After Velazquez’s party, on her advice, I decided to hail a cab to Capitol Hill to Piecora’s where the Sierra Club was hosting a “No on Roads/Transit” party. The cabbie I got had one of the most depressing greetings I’ve ever heard:
    “How are you?” he asked me.
    “I’m good,” I said.
    “You’re all right?” he asked, “You sure? Even though the dollar is collapsing?”
    I assured him that I was fine. I asked him if he voted. He did, although he had a lot to say about Seattle’s absentee-voter-happy system. “It’s evil and corrupt,” he said. “People have to vote in person,” he said, “That’s the only way it counts. And not on a computer, either. The computer voting is most evil of all.”
    I agreed with that.
    In agreement, we sped toward Piecora’s, and I attended the no on RTID party. There was beer and pizza and a lot of people were very happy. A whole bunch of cheery young people were posing for a photo op. They seemed to be dressed in white bear hats—maybe they were polar bears who were happy that roads weren’t going to be built in Seattle?—and a bunch of people took pictures of them and the whole moment was very artificial and staged and gross. I bet you’ll see the picture in a newspaper tomorrow.
    And that’s it. Since I hadn’t posted anything all night, I started posting. And now I’m done.
    I just hit up American Gangster for one more opinion and this is what Jay-Z had to say:
    “I know I should’ve did that/I know it’s gonna come right back/I know it’s gonna destroy everything I made/It’s probably gonna get ya boy/Sent away/But this game I play ain’t no/Way to fix it it’s inevitable/That I’m fallin’.”
    Did I mention that this album is genius?

    Party Crasher Report: Part Two

    posted by on November 6 at 11:35 PM

    By the time I made it to Venus Velazquez’s party, the first drop had happened, and things looked dour. Her forces had amassed at Jasmine, a sushi bar that had recently taken over the site once inhabited by a charming Red Robin, and things were looking bleak. Venus was there sipping from a pint glass of delicious-looking ice water. Venus wasn’t talking to reporters—a member of her staff assailed me and said “Venus isn’t talking to anyone,” settling the matter before I could even bring it up—and so that left me to find the bathroom.

    As I approached the stairs leading to the bathroom, a woman nearly fell into my arms. She was very drunk, and she was staggering down the stairs. “Easy,” I said to her, not very helpfully. “Tee-hee!” she said, and then, she added, also not very helpfully, “Whoa.”
    In the bathroom again, I consulted Jay-Z. “Say hello to the bad guy/They say I’m a bad guy/I come from the bottom/But I’m mad fly/They say I’m a menace/That’s the picture they paint/They say a lot about me/Let me tell you what I ain’t,” Jay-Z said.
    I went back out into the bar and chatted with a very nice employee of Friends of the Library who was about to leave the bar and attend Bruce Harrell’s party, which was no doubt a little more lively. Velazquez gave a not-concession speech that sounded very suspiciously like a concession speech.

    “It’s been good,” she said. She added that the political process “has been remarkable to my soul.” The Friends of the Library lady left in the middle of the speech. An employee of the bar tapped me on the shoulder.
    “Is it true,” she asked me, “That this is the one who got the DUI?”
    I nodded.

    She broke down in giggles. “That’s great!”

    Venus, too, acknowledged the DUI at the end of her speech when she said, “So, eat, drink and be merry, and there are cabs for everybody who needs one!

    That seemed like as good a time to leave as any.

    A Few More Thoughts on Tonight’s Results

    posted by on November 6 at 11:22 PM

    From ECB:

    • Holy crap, roads and transit! You got creamed. I was expecting a much closer race, but—barring a miracle—it wasn’t even close. We won’t know for a few weeks what exactly to make of the numbers—whether it went down hardest in anti-rail suburbs, for example, or pro-transit, anti-roads areas like Seattle’s 43rd and 46th legislative districts—but it’s pretty clear that this wasn’t the package voters wanted. It was too big and too divisive, and hopefully the people who craft a replacement will have learned their lesson by the next time. (I would prefer, of course, that that lesson be: No more roads expansion; money for neighborhood streets, safety and maintenance; and more money for rail NOW, rather than in 20 years—but that’s just me.) In any case, I think one lesson is definitely that an $18 billion, 50-year package is simply too big to pass—especially when, as with this package, it doesn’t fully fund all the projects it includes, meaning that voters will have to pay tolls or additional taxes to finish major projects like SR-520.

    • Speaking of voters being against big tax increases, the apparent victory of Tim Eyman’s I-960 (which would require a two-thirds majority in the legislature to pass any tax increase) and the apparent defeat of HR 4204 (allowing school levies to pass by a simple majority, rather than a supermajority) seemed to speak to voters’ antitax mood. Interestingly, however, those same seemingly conservative voters were siding with trial lawyers over insurance companies in passing R-67 decisively, 56 to 44.

    • Darlene Flynn got swept out of the school board in yet ANOTHER anti-incumbent tide. I don’t cover school board politics regularly, but doesn’t it seem like we have one of these every single election? Yeah, I know the school system has its problems, but Flynn seemed like she was trying to be part of the solution. Yet I know lots of people who voted for her victorious opponent, Sherry Carr, because they were just “in an anti-incumbent mood.”

    • It’s interesting that Venus Velazquez and incumbent David Della were losing by almost identical margins. That could be a coincidence, but I wonder how much overlap there is between supporters of Tim Burgess (who appears to be winning against Della) and of Bruce Harrell (Velazquez’s opponent for Peter Steinbrueck’s seat)?

    Party Crasher Report: Part One

    posted by on November 6 at 11:08 PM

    Lines of communication broke down tonight faster than certain Seattle politicians’ careers, which means that I have to Slog all my reports all at once.
    Let me also say that, in general, election nights turn me into a quivering, superstitious little fool. I’m not sure why—I’m an avowed atheist who doesn’t believe in anything supernatural—but the thought that our political course is being decided in one evening turns me into a cowering caveman. I decided, tonight, to fall prey to my fears. Some folks consult the I Ching when they are scared. I decided to consult the lyrics of Jay-Z’s newly-released American Gangster album, which, by the way, is total genius.

    The first party that I hit up this evening was the Tim Burgess affair, at a lovely wine bar at the top of Queen Anne. Immediately upon my arrival, I walked up to Tim Burgess’s daughter, Kim Burgess, and started talking. After blabbing for a minute or so, she corrects me. In fact, I’m not talking to Tim Burgess’s daughter, Kim Burgess. I’m talking to Tim Burgess’s other daughter, Katie Burgess. She gestures over to the other side of the bar, where her older sister, Kim Burgess, daughter of Tim Burgess, older sister of Katie Burgess, is holding court. “It’s okay,” Katie said, “It happens all the time.”
    That ended the conversation cold.
    I took the opportunity to go to the bathroom and hit up American Gangster. Jay-Z had this to say: “Let’s go/Get out the car/goin’ in circles/it’s a vicious cycle/this is a crash course/this ain’t high school/wake up muttley/you’re dreamin’ again/you’re reality show/the season begins.” This, obviously, meant that Jay-Z was feeling cautiously optimistic about the whole thing.
    I returned to the wine bar, where waiters were unloading huge amounts of delicious food—trays of bread with pesto, cold cut platters, and delightful little mini burgers.

    I start talking to a local top-of Queen Anne-ite. The conversation quickly devolved into a complaint about how Metropolitan Market closed and a QFC was going to open into the same space. The gentleman I was talking to said that “QFC doesn’t offer the same choices that Metropolitan Market does, and so we decided to do something.”
    I asked him if his battle against QFC—“You know, I have nothing against QFC, but there’s already one at the bottom of the hill,” he said—was the reason why he was for Tim Burgess. “Absolutely,” he replied.
    This kind of explained Burgess’s pastoral election posters that I’d been seeing around:

    Look at that shit. Trees, houses, a sunset. If there was ever a more bucolic scene on an election poster, I’ve yet to see it. I was hardly surprised when the results came in and the people were entirely on Burgess’s side, at nearly 65%. People were discussing whether or not Burgess should come out with a acceptance speech—at 8:30 in the evening!—and so it was time to leave. The food kept coming and the wine bar got so crowded that waiters could hardly make their way through the place.

    By the Numbers: UPDATE

    posted by on November 6 at 10:54 PM

    Erica will add some analysis to this in a second—but here are the latest numbers:

    Prop 1 (Sound Transit/RTID): No (about 56% to 44% in both the RTID and RTA districts).

    King County Prosecutor: Satterberg over Sherman, 53% to 46%

    City Council Position 1: Godden over Szwaja, 71% to 27%.

    City Council Position 3: Harrell over Velazquez, 60% to 38%.

    City Council Position 7: Burgess over Della, 61% to 38%.

    City Council Position 9: Clark over Fenton, 74% to 25%.

    School Board District 1: Maier over Soriano, 59% to 40%.

    School Board District 2: Carr over Flynn, 58% to 40%.

    School Board District 3: Martin-Morris over Blomstrom, 72% to 27%.

    School Board District 6: Sundquist over Ramirez, 59% to 39%.

    Port of Seattle Commissioner Position 2: Tarleton over Edwards, 51% to 48%.

    Port of Seattle Commissioner Position 5: Fisken over Bryant, 50% to 49%.

    Rainy Day Fund (8206) is being approved, 68% to 31%.

    School levy simple majority (4204) is being rejected, 54% to 46%.

    Tim Eyman’s antitax initiative I-960 is being approved, 54% to 46%.

    R-67 on insurance triple damages is being approved, 56% to 44%.

    The Numerology of Hope

    posted by on November 6 at 10:51 PM

    Kiley here: The late absentee ballots that were just announced have given the Sherman party at Mainstage a lil’ bump. It’s only 3,000 votes, but there’s a two-to-one split in Sherman’s favor in those 3,000.

    I don’t know exactly what that means, but Sandeep Kaushik, a Sherman staffer—and, of course, Stranger writer emeritus—explained it: “Early absentees [which tilted against Sherman 46-54] are different from late absentees [which tilted towards him 2-1]. Late absentees tend to mirror the poll votes.”

    And poll votes are the shit you want in your Christmas stocking.

    Which is why the wee 3,000 late-absentee votes that have just dropped are exciting to the Sherman people.

    As if in answer to the new hope, some nice-looking toast with cubed tomatoes and shreds of basil have appeared. Everyone’s too busy being excited to eat any. So I, cad that I am, take two.

    Then I hear a woman talking into her cell phone just behind me: “The numbers are headed in the right direction.” Then she sucks in her breath sharply. “But it’s going to be a long, tense night.”


    posted by on November 6 at 10:45 PM

    Brendan Kiley reports from his bicycle en route from Godden’s party to Sherman’s:

    The party at Sherman’s was so dour and depressing, I decided to ride over to Jean Godden’s for a bracing shot of victory. The Two Bells Tavern was brightly lit, full of brightly clothed people (crimson jackets were all the rage) talking happily but not excitedly. I asked Godden, whose opponent Joe Szwaja is renowned for his anger, what her frightening moment was with Joe during the campaign. “He had a habit of standing up and turning his backside toward me, almost as if he were mooning me!”

    Zen, But Confusing: Szwaja’s HQ

    posted by on November 6 at 10:44 PM

    Jonah reports:

    Szwaja’s party is at Ravenna Third Place Books, in the bar downstairs. The room is packed with old people with long gray hair. Very casually dressed in a tie and dirty white New Balance sneakers, Joe Szwaja sat down with The Stranger: “The numbers aren’t what we want, but they’ll go up.” Then he started talking about rivers. It was very zen, but confusing.

    Even if Godden beats him in the election, does Szwaja still think he could take her in a game of basketball? Yes: “I’d try to lure her into the post-up game. Very few people can beat me in the post-up game.”

    Szwaja took a couple of shots at Godden. “Unlike Godden, I would never use NOVA staff to help my campaign.” He chastised local media for its “lack of substance.” If he doesn’t win, he wants to concentrate on neighborhood climate councils and improving sustainability in neighborhoods. He says he wants over 50 percent, of course, but he estimates he’ll get between 30-40 percent of the vote. (He’s at 27% now.)

    He’s against Prop 1 and said, “The earth doesn’t care about compromises.” He also supports Maria Ramirez.

    Commenting on the chill atmosphere in the bookstore, a tall twentysomething—one of the younger people in the audience—said, “Since Joe’s a Green Party candidate, a lot of his supporters are used to losing.” A man with the awesome name of Claude Ginsberg was upset with The Stranger’s coverage of Szwaja: “What’s hippie-style about speaking truth to power?” Indeed.

    At the Anti-Roads and Transit Party

    posted by on November 6 at 10:35 PM

    ECB again: The mood at the anti-Roads and Transit party at Piecora’s Pizza was, predictably, far more upbeat than the pro-Roads and Transit shindig at the Westin. Despite predictions that there would be an odd mix of anti-transit and anti-roads opponents of the proposal, the room was jammed with enviros, with only about five anti-transit opponents in evidence. I missed King County Executive Ron Sims’s appearance earlier in the night, but I did manage to snag a slice of cold pepperoni pizza and sit down with roads opponents Mike O’Brien and Tim Gould of the Sierra Club and get their take on the results. O’Brien said that he called more than 150 undecided voters yesterday, and the number one concern in their minds was the prospect of expanding roads. O’Brien said he expects the Sierra Club will have a place at the table in crafting a replacement ballot measure. “There’s lots of safety and maintenance needs, so there will likely be a roads component,” O’Brien said. “I hope it’s going to be a safety and maintenance component. I don’t think [elected officials] are going to say, well, we just ran the wrong commercials.” He noted that Sound Transit has the authority to go back to the ballot next year by itself, as do any of the three counties in the regional package. When I talked to Sound Transit spokesman Ric Ilgenfritz earlier, however, he didn’t say anything to indicate a standalone ballot measure was in Sound Transit’s plans.

    Chez Della

    posted by on November 6 at 10:18 PM

    Jonah reports:

    At city council incumbent David Della’s party, there were about 25 people sitting around tables in a brightly lit Chinese restaurant. Della wasn’t there, and hadn’t arrived by the time The Stranger left around 9:30 pm. I went up to Della’s legislative aide, Dave Namura, who very slowly informed me that the numbers were 61 to 39 in Burgess’s favor. I asked him how they thought they were going to do, and he said crankily, “I’m not going to comment on anything else.”

    I went outside and talked to a well-dressed man who didn’t wish to be named. He said he was disappointed in the party and the fact that Della wasn’t there. He described the party as “a bit moribund. But it’s still early. I’m hopeful we’ll get a rally here. I don’t think Della did much to distinguish himself in this race.”

    Michael Goodspaceguy Nelson predicted Della would win “by a landslide.” A young African-American woman started walking around telling everyone not to yell out stats. “I just got the numbers,” a man responded. “And I don’t want to announce them.”

    Brian, The Stranger’s news intern, got up to do some karaoke. He chose REM’s “The End of the World as We Know It.” People looked angry and confused. (Video is forthcoming.)

    A man sitting at the bar commented that it’ll be “the attack of the yuppies” if Burgess wins.

    More from Satterberg in Burien

    posted by on November 6 at 9:55 PM

    [Reported by Lindy and Megan]

    Our reporters finally got an interview with Satterberg, and first thing, they asked him to go on the record about the accusation that the GOP was earmarking donations for his campaign. “Parties are allowed to raise money from whomever they want.” He reiterated his nonpartisanship. Why did he chose to run as a Republican rather than a Democrat? “[Blah blah blah]… Norm Maleng… [blah blah blah]”.

    So, is Satterberg a Republican or not, goddamnit! We decide to judge him like they judge red and blue states: the last two presidential elections. Did he vote for George W. Bush? “Which time?” Both times. “Well, wait, who did he run against the first time?” Al Gore. “I really don’t remember. I wouldn’t vote for him again. Does that count?” Um.

    Changing topics, our reporters ask Satterberg about his musical influences. (His band, the Approximations, is about to go on stage.) “First and foremost, the Beatles.” Any local bands? “I really love the Posies.” Are you going to go on tour after the election? “This whole election has been a ruse to get publicity for my band.” Dan Satterberg took pains to distance himself from Tim Eyman. “Doesn’t The Stranger have a party crasher column? You should take a picture of Tim Eyman.”

    The Approximations have started playing. Their first jam? “Don’t Stop (Thinking About Tomorrow)”—Clinton’s campaign song. Coincidence? The Stranger Election Control Board thinks not.

    Quick Talk with Sherman…

    posted by on November 6 at 9:50 PM

    …while we wait for the second drop. There are around 45 people here. The feeling remains quiet and shruggy—like virtuous folks getting creamed.

    Have you been asked the required question about what you’ll do when [actually, I said when, just to be polite] you’re elected?

    Focus on how to prevent elder abuse, elder neglect, and fraud. Those are underreported and underprosecuted crimes.

    Why has the prosecutor’s office been in Republican hands so long?

    Well, Norm Maleng conveyed a sense of evenhandedness and steadiness and came from the regime of Chris Bailey, also a Republican, who cleaned up the office that had been very corrupt under his predecessor, who was also a Republican.

    [He starts talking about how the city has changed and he represents its evolving values. Those values, he says, aren’t new, not per se, but they haven’t been represented in a contested election in awhile. He begins to swerve towards his campaign jargon about “equal justice under the law.” I interrupt him.]

    Who’s gotten unequal justice?

    Well, there have been some cases—like detective Dan Ring, who was accused of stealing from the elderly and stalking his ex-wife, and my opponent endorsed the dismissal of criminal charges and even allowed him to extend his retirement by a year—so he not only walked away, he walked away carrying his golden parachute.

    What’s the first thing you opponent would do if he were elected?

    I look forward to not having to know that.

    Report from the Pro-Prop 1 Party

    posted by on November 6 at 9:27 PM

    I’m sitting at the Westin Hotel, trying to cool down from the slam-packed room that hosted the pro-Roads and Transit party. With the measure failing by a strong margin (about 44 to 56 percent) in all three of the region’s counties, it was a grim scene, reminiscent of the pro-R-51 party in 2002, when that roads measure failed in part because of opposition from environmental groups. This time, of course, enviro groups were divided.


    Pierce County Exec John Ladenburg spoke first. He told the crowd that he was “certainly not conceding defeat at this point—a couple of years back at this point, Gore was president.” But he acknowledged what everyone in the room was thinking: The measure appeared to be sunk. “The question is, what now?” he said. “Well, now you’re going to get up in the morning and you’re going to be stuck in traffic, and that’s going to go on for a while.” He called opponents of the measure, who include both some environmentalists and some light-rail opponents, “aginners”—“they’re against everything. They don’t have a plan, they don’t have a solution, but they’re agin’ it.” Ladenburg, of course, was the official who most strongly supported the Cross Base Highway in Pierce County that was so hated by environmentalists—one reason groups like the Sierra Club opposed the roads and transit proposal.

    The question “What next?” was palpable. The environmental community has been divided on roads and transit, and proponents of the measure have spent so much time saying it’s our last chance to get light rail that it’s hard to imagine them turning around and stumping for a new package next year. Nonetheless, that’s exactly what some elected officials, including King County Council members Larry Phillips and Julia Patterson seemed to suggest should happen. “I’m just concerned that if we don’t keep this coalition going.. we won’t get anything done,” Patterson said. “We need to roll up our sleeves and come back and do it again.” Phillips, who thought voters were rejecting the package because of the cost and the possibility of tolls on some of the roads it would pay for, said that although it would be politically difficult to get something on the ballot next year, “I think there’s a good chance we could win in a presidential year” like 2008. Governor Christine Gregoire (who was not here) reportedly doesn’t want any tax measures on the ballot in 2008, when she will be up for reelection.


    Transit supporters seemed divided between sanguine and pessimistic. Bill LaBorde of Environment Washington said he didn’t expect to have a problem getting together with environmental groups that opposed the package and uniting in support of a new proposal. He said he was intrigued by King County Executive Ron Sims’s proposal to pay for roads and transit improvements with tolls and congestion pricing, but added, “I’m pretty skeptical that you can get voter approval” for it. “If it’s viable, that’s great.” Ric Ilgenfritz, communications director for Sound Transit, was more gloomy. “There is no Plan B,” Ilgenfritz said. “Our job is to be something about the transportation problem, and the transportation problem is going to be there tomorrow, just as it was today.”

    By the Numbers

    posted by on November 6 at 9:26 PM

    Here are some preliminary results:

    Prop 1 (Sound Transit/RTID): No (about 55 to 44 in both the RTID and RTA districts).

    King County Prosecutor: Satterberg over Sherman, 54% to 46%

    City Council Position 1: Godden over Szwaja, 72 to 27.

    City Council Position 3: Harrell over Velazquez, 61 to 38.

    City Council Position 7: Burgess over Della, 61 to 39.

    City Council Position 9: Clark over Fenton, 74 to 26.

    School Board District 1: Maier over Soriano, 60 to 40.

    School Board District 2: Carr over Flynn, 59 to 40.

    School Board District 3: Martin-Morris over Blomstrom, 72 to 27.

    School Board District 6: Sundquist over Ramirez, 60 to 40.

    Port of Seattle Commissioner Position 2: Tarleton over Edwards, 51 to 48.

    Port of Seattle Commissioner Position 5: Fisken over Bryant, 51 to 49.

    Rainy Day Fund (8206) is being approved, 69 to 31.

    School levy simple majority (4204) is being rejected, 54 to 46.

    Tim Eyman’s antitax initiative I-960 is being approved, 54 to 46.

    R-67 on insurance triple damages is being approved, 56 to 44.

    Sherman’s Subdued Party

    posted by on November 6 at 9:03 PM

    [Reported by Brendan Kiley.]

    It’s sort of subdued here at the Mainstage Comedy Club, where Sherman (our man for King County Prosecutor) just announced the percentages for the first drop: 46% for him, 54% for his opponent (who’s having his party out in Burien).

    Everyone is shrugging-sad and heads back to the bar for another drink, while Kevin of the band Dave Hates Chico, who will be playing later, warms up in the lobby of the club. “What do you think about the numbers, Kevin?” “Pretty close, dude. But seems like he’s got to get some more votes, man.”

    Everyone’s talking about RTID.

    I ask several people why the prosecutor’s seat has been Republican for so long. Sherman supporter Brendan Donckers said, “I don’t want to say anything unpleasant or disrespectful of Norm Maleng. His drug court has been a successful enterprise. I don’t want to say anything disrespectful.”

    That’s the most cogent answer I got.

    At Dan Satterberg’s Rocking Party in Burien

    posted by on November 6 at 8:54 PM

    [Reported by Lindy and Megan.]

    At Dan Satterberg’s party in Mick Kelly’s Irish Pub in Burien, Dan Satterberg’s 11-year-old daughter’s best friend just got into a BMW with vanity plates that say “SOLDOUT.” Before ducking out, the precocious girl (who’s almost 11) told Lindy that Dan Satterberg “is fair and will serve justice to King County.”

    Lindy reports that everyone here is white and that half of them have a hearing aid. There is a band that may or may not be Dan Satterberg’s, but he hasn’t joined them on stage.

    Tim Eyman arrived and soon mistook our intrepid reporter for “a waitress.” After declining to take his drink order, Megan asked Eyman if he voted for Dan Satterberg. “Sure!”, he said. “Really?” “No, actually I don’t live in King County.” He’s already declaring victory for I-960, but there is no 960 party, so he came to Dan Satterberg’s instead. He then apologizes for calling Megan a waitress.

    The snacks are mediocre—not the best egg rolls, not the worst egg rolls.

    Megan also interviewed Satterberg supporter Joel Harvey, who’s wearing a Mount St. Helen’s muscle tee and a US war veteran’s cap. Did you vote for Dan Satterberg? “Yes.” Why? “Because he makes things right.” Why did you come here tonight? “Like in a sexual way?” Awkward pause. “Why I came here tonight is the same reason I became a first captain in Vietnam.” So Dan Satterberg’s party is like Vietnam? “Yes.”

    Report from Burgess Party on Queen Anne

    posted by on November 6 at 8:33 PM

    ECB here, Slogging from what has suddenly become the Tim Burgess victory party. When the latest numbers came up showing Burgess with 61 percent to Della’s 38.6 percent, the previously staid crowd at Bricco Wine Bar on Upper Queen Anne exploded. “Obviously, there must be something wrong,” Burgess joked, adding, “I hope we don’t get slammed for having this party in such a chichi wine bar.”


    Standing at the door of the crowded bar, Burgess greeted newcomers with the news. Most looked shocked. “You’ll have to start shopping for clothes for all those official functions!” someone told Burgess’s wife Joleen. “Is it too early to say congratulations?” another said. Burgess had been attacked in recent days by Della for work his firm did in the ’90s on behalf of controversial right-wing group Concerned Women for America. The mailers and ads, which attempted to label Democrat Burgess as a Republican, may have backfired.


    “Let’s go home!” a friend just told Burgess. “No way—I can drink now!” Burgess replied. The food spread at the bar is impressive, to say the least—it includes mini lamb burgers on brioche, all kinds of tapenades, and fancy-looking cheeses. Can’t wait to hear what the scene at Della’s party is like.

    Bruce Harrell HQ

    posted by on November 6 at 8:30 PM

    [Reported by Jonah.]

    At Bruce Harrell’s party at the Four Seas in the International District, the first results are in. Harrell is at 61% to Velazquez’s 38%, and everyone in the crowd is going nuts. The fact that it’s at Four Seas is weird—this is Richard McIver’s hangout. Jonah asked Harrell why he was having his party here: Apparently, Harrell’s family had a big dinner here two days before his dad died in August. Said Harrell, “His spirit is here with me.” Jonah asked if Harrell would be drinking tonight, and his wife quickly jumped in: “He’ll be very careful.”

    Ron Sims is here—it’s one of three stops he’s making. He’s also stopping by the Sierra Club and Medic 1.

    The best part so far: When asked how the food was, former mayoral candidate Al Runte bit into a chicken wing, licked his fingers, and said, “It’s all right. When I had my election party at Rock Salt, we spent $2,000, and it was good.”

    First King County Drop

    posted by on November 6 at 8:18 PM

    With 144622 ballots counted, Satterberg is edging Sherman for King County Prosector.

    Here’s the first page of Seattle results, with Godden trouncing Szwaja and Harrell beating Velazquez. And here’s the second page, with Burgess beating Della and Judy Fenton winning a disturbing 25% of the vote.

    First Statewide Ballot Drop

    posted by on November 6 at 8:06 PM

    No word from the partygoers yet, but Island County is having its say in the first statewide vote drop. The Islanders are liking Tim Eyman (56% yea on the antitax I-960) and loving trial lawyers (61% yea on R-67 for triple damages on unreasonable insurance denials). Oh, wait, another drop. A bunch more counties are checking in, and the yeas still have it on both, but the margins are narrowing. Nothing from the biggest counties yet.

    Here’s Where Those Election Night Parties Are At!

    posted by on November 6 at 6:45 PM

    The Stranger Election Control Board will start drinking at the Westin around 7 pm tonight, and then our team is fanning out to all the parties, bringing you Slog coverage and results and (drunken) analysis and cell phone pictures throughout the evening. Here’s where we’ll be:

    Yes on Prop 1 Westin Hotel, 1900 5th Ave, 8:00

    No on Prop 1
    Piecora’s Pizza, 1401 E Madison, 8:00pm

    King County Prosecutor:
    Bill Sherman
    The Mainstage, across from Key Arena, 315 1st Ave. N. 7:30 p.m.

    Dan Satterberg
    Mick Kelly’s Irish Pub in Burien, 435 SW 152 St. 7:30 p.m.

    Seattle City Council:
    Venus Velazquez
    Jasmine Restaurant 1102 4th Ave, 7:30 p.m.

    Bruce Harrell
    Four Seas in the International Dist., 714 S King St. 7:30 p.m.

    Tom Rasmussen
    New Orleans Restaurant in Pioneer Square, 114 1st Ave. S. 5:30 -7:30 p.m.

    Sally Clark
    Double Header Tavern in Pioneer Square, 407 Second Ave. 5:30–7:30 p.m.

    Jean Godden
    Two Bells Tavern in Belltown, 2314 4th Ave. 7:30 p.m.

    Joe Szwaja
    Third Place Tavern inside 3rd Place Books, 6504 20th Ave. NE

    Tim Burgess
    Bricco Wine Bar, 1525 Queen Anne Ave. N, 8:00 p.m.

    David Della
    China Gate in the International Dist., 8:00–12:00 p.m.

    Port of Seattle:
    Gael Tarleton
    Blu Water Bistro
    1001 Fairview Ave N, private dining room, 7:30 p.m.

    Alec Fisken
    Flury and Company Gallery
    322 1st Ave S in Pioneer Square, 8 p.m.

    Seattle School Board:
    Darlene Flynn
    2522 Western Ave, 8 p.m.

    Maria Ramirez
    4720 California Ave SW in West Seattle, 8 p.m.

    And here are my predictions.

    In Other Elections

    posted by on November 6 at 6:00 PM

    Posted by Ryan S. Jackson

    Down between fifteen and twenty points in the polls heading into today’s election, Republican Kentucky governor Ernie Fletcher is informing the concerned citizenry of his state that the Homosexual Agenda Is Coming For Your Children. The message, solicited in dulcet tones of Mr. Pat Boone, is being sent out via robocall to homes across Kentucky:

    “Now do you want a governor who’d like Kentucky to be another San Francisco?” Boone asks. “Please re-elect Ernie Fletcher.”

    And at a campaign stop last night, the Lexington Herald-Leader reports, the Republican nominee for Lt. Governor made a direct attack upon the Democratic ticket: “Do you want a couple of San Francisco treats or do you want a governor?”

    Possibly fearing that having a surrogate call his opponents “San Francisco treats” might miss the more cerebral voters he’s hoping to target, Fletcher topped his re-election campaign by having a large display of the Ten Commandments wheeled into the Kentucky statehouse yesterday.

    Fletcher Gets Beaten Like a Gong


    With nearly 54 percent of the vote in, The Courier-Journal has called the Kentucky Gubernatorial election for Democrat Steve Beshear. Beshear leads 61-39 percent — a margin of about 116,000 votes.

    Gov. Ernie Fletcher could never recover from sagging poll numbers following the merit hiring scandal that saw him and others in or close to his administration indicted for violating state law. Fletcher pardoned everyone but himself for alleged wrong doing.

    Election Prediction

    posted by on November 6 at 5:07 PM

    We’re going to get a count tonight—at about 8:15—from King County Elections of about 100,000 absentee ballots. They also project that when all is said and done, about 72 percent of the total vote, which they guesstimate at 467,570, will come in absentees. (That’s about 338,000).

    They’re also going to report on the poll count at around 10:30. The poll vote is supposed to be about 28 percent of the total vote.

    So my sense is the 8:15 drop won’t tell us a lot unless the margins are more than three points (and so says an election wonk friend of mine).

    Another election wonk friend of mine called me earlier today and asked for my predictions.

    Here they are:

    Prop 1 (roads and transit) loses.
    Measure 67 (insurance reform) wins.
    4204 (simple majority for school levies) wins.
    8206 (rainy day fund) wins.

    Dan Satterberg over Bill Sherman for King County Prosecutor.

    And in the City Council races:

    Jean Godden
    Bruce Harrell
    David Della

    For Port:
    Bob Edwards
    Alec Fisken

    School Board:
    Peter Maier
    Sherry Carr
    Steve Sundquist

    We’ll be Slogging tonight. I hope I’m wrong about most of these. Or at least about Sherman and Flynn losing.

    Tune in to Slog at around 8pm when we begin our ubercoverage.

    Conservative Hacks Unhappy With Right-Wing Smear Machine

    posted by on November 6 at 5:05 PM

    Via the New York Times comes word of a group of conservative writers (of such stellar titles as “Unfit for Command: Swift Boat Veterans Speak Out Against John Kerry” and “Dereliction of Duty: The Eyewitness Account of How Bill Clinton Compromised America’s National Security”) suing Eagle Publishing for unpaid royalties.

    In a suit filed in United States District Court in Washington yesterday, the authors Jerome R. Corsi, Bill Gertz, Lt. Col. Robert (Buzz) Patterson, Joel Mowbray and Richard Miniter state that Eagle Publishing, which owns Regnery, “orchestrates and participates in a fraudulent, deceptively concealed and self-dealing scheme to divert book sales away from retail outlets and to wholly owned subsidiary organizations within the Eagle conglomerate.”…In the lawsuit the authors say that Eagle sells or gives away copies of their books to book clubs, newsletters and other organizations owned by Eagle “to avoid or substantially reduce royalty payments to authors.”

    Spreading lies and smearing people: Not as profitable as it should be, evidently.

    White Center Woman Bites Off Man’s Lip

    posted by on November 6 at 4:24 PM

    The first sentence in the Seattle Times story:

    A White Center woman was arrested for investigation of assault Monday night after authorities say she bit off the lip of a man she had been kissing.

    The last sentence:

    The man’s bottom lip was found on the floor of one of their bedrooms. It was covered in hair, but deputies determined the hair was “likely from a cat,” Urquhart said.

    (Thanks, Mindy!)

    Donny Daddy Dead, Dead, Dead.

    posted by on November 6 at 3:57 PM

    I hope Marie is sitting down.

    Donny and Marie Osmond’s father, George, has died. He was 90. Osmond Snr. passed away at his home in Utah on Tuesday morning…George Osmond married his wife Olive in 1944 and they went on to bear nine children - including sons Alan, Wayne, Merrill, Jay and Donny, who found fame as part of The Osmond Brothers. He is survived by his brood of children. Olive died in 2004.

    “Brood”, indeed.

    Thanks for the obit, Starpulse. I guess.

    Today on Line Out

    posted by on November 6 at 3:45 PM

    Massive Night: Late Sunday Evening with Art Brut, the Hold Steady

    A Tale of Two Garys: Glitter, Numan, and Alter Ego

    Tonight in Music: Jens Lekmann, Throw Me The Statue, Chin Up Chin Up

    Today in Music News: Ghostbusters, Prince, and Meatloaf Cysts

    This Week in Crack: Emily Dickinson is Reincarnated as Billy Ray Cyrus’ Mullet played by Mary Cheney

    To The End: Megan Seling on Operation Ivy

    OMG OiNK IS IN UR INTERNET STEELIN UR LOOTZ: Limewire and Identity Theft

    Cheesy: Pringles Eyeing Lucrative Rap Snack Market.

    Joanna Who-som?: Original Harpster Alan Cochevelou

    Ruff Gemz Aren’t Forever: One Less Crappy Hipster Dance Night

    Beef: The RAND Corporation vs Ja Rule vs 98 Degrees

    Nice Hustle: TJ Gorton on Buari

    Church Punts on Tent City 3

    posted by on November 6 at 3:28 PM

    posted by news intern Brian Slodysko

    Seattle School Board candidate Steve Sundquist is drawing negative attention, from his opponent Maria Ramirez anyway, for his role in his West Seattle church’s decision to deny Tent City 3’s request to set up in their parking lot. Tent City 3 is the roving homeless shelter that houses up to 100 people for three month stints in parking lots around the Seattle metro area.

    Ramirez, a community-oriented education activist, says Sundquist—who had a role in the decision as the moderator of the Fauntleroy United Church of Christ’s council—is being uncharitable as we head into the holiday season.

    “It does seem a bit elitist—and I hate to use that word,” Ramirez said.

    While Sundquist says he stands behind the church’s decision, he thinks part of what is going on is an attempt at politicking by his opponent. He said the church is in the middle of a capital campaign and doesn’t have the time to take on a project like Tent City 3. He then counted off a number of homeless outreach programs the church supports.

    After preliminary discussion, the council decided in mid-October to deal with the issue at a later date. According to Sundquist, this means the Church will have another discussion amongst its members before deciding if they will engage the surrounding community in discussions. I guess they made a decision to not make a decision. The church’s letter to the community can be found here.

    West Seattle Blog reports the church was flatly asked by neighbors to not host Tent City 3.

    Sundquist admitted some church neighbors are opposed to Tent City setting up, but insisted their opposition was not a factor in the council’s decision.

    “This particular thing was a discussion within the church—not with the neighbors.”

    War on Immigrants

    posted by on November 6 at 3:16 PM

    Italy’s Mexicans.

    ROME - Opposition leader Silvio Berlusconi urged Italy to close its borders to Romanian workers and a conservative ally called Sunday for the expulsion of tens of thousands of immigrants amid public outrage over a wave of violent crimes blamed on foreigners.
    Illegal immigrants are the niggers of the 21st century.

    Flickr Photo of the Day

    posted by on November 6 at 3:04 PM

    First bacon salt, now this?! Is bacon the new Clear Pepsi?


    From Stranger Flickr pool member, &y

    Underpants Power, Activate!

    posted by on November 6 at 2:33 PM

    It’s clever, and adorable, and it makes me terribly sad: two little boys, inspired by common schoolyard abuse and still to discover the wonders of black trench coats and assault weapons, put their tormented little heads together and devise, ladies and gentlemen, WEDGIE-PROOF UNDERPANTS, guaranteed to foil the efforts of the most wedgie-crazed bullies!


    Of course I’m wearing a pair, right now.

    Now please to scrub your eyes with rock salt and ammonia to remove the terrible stain that is FOX “News”. And hurry.

    Clinton: “I wasn’t at my best the other night”

    posted by on November 6 at 2:25 PM

    CNN just emailed out a rush transcript of a new interview with Hillary Clinton and CNN’s Candy Crowley. It’s really worth a read.

    Clinton answers questions about her debate performance, presidential documents, drivers licenses for illegal immigrants, charges of sexism, and the possibility of Joe Biden as vice president.

    Here’s the sexism excerpt:

    On charges of sexism against Clinton

    CROWLEY: You said after the debate, I don’t think that all of those men came after me because I’m a woman, but because I’m the frontrunner. Yet you have – there are two people out there who support you, Geraldine Ferraro, Eleanor Smeal, who said, it looked like the Anita Hill hearings. This is sexism. So this is a mixed message. It’s the sort of thing that people look at and say, you know, the Clinton campaign wants to have it both ways.

    CLINTON: Well, I can only speak for myself. I am deeply grateful for the strong support that I have across the country and a lot of people watching it reach their own conclusions and are certainly free to speak out but I know that in a campaign where people are trying to score political points and I am ahead I’m going to be attacked. That’s what happens in campaigns. I don’t have any problem with that.

    If they want to use their energy attacking me, that’s their choice. I am going to use my energy focusing on a new energy policy and so much else. I’m not running anybody else’s campaign and I love what Harry Truman said if you can’t stand the heat, get out of the kitchen. And I’m really comfortable in the kitchen.So I’m staying in.

    CROWLEY: Senator, I have worked with your campaign as some of your folks can attest to. It’s a really tight ship. If you wanted Eleanor Smeal or Geraldine Ferraro to not suggest that this is about your being a woman, you could do that.

    CLINTON: Well, Candy, I didn’t speak to either one of them. So I don’t have any idea. I don’t believe my campaign did. If they did, I don’t know about that.

    Other excerpts in the jump…

    Continue reading "Clinton: "I wasn't at my best the other night"" »

    The SLUT Gets Around

    posted by on November 6 at 1:42 PM

    At Harrison St and Fairview Ave N today:

    (Crappy video quality courtesy of my cell phone.)

    I think I’m falling for the SLUT.

    Speaking of Development and Arts Spaces

    posted by on November 6 at 1:41 PM

    I was idling on the Department of Planning and Development website (as I am wont to do of an autumn afternoon) and saw this commercial construction permit for 1100 Republican St, once known as Consolidated Works.

    Demo existing. Construct new office building with below grade parking grage with potential ground floor retail.

    Development. It’s all the grage.

    When Gay Marriage Attacks!

    posted by on November 6 at 12:58 PM

    Mitt Romney in Florida yesterday:

    America’s families and their future are under attack, Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney said Monday. The threats: gay marriage, Internet pornography and out-of-wedlock births.

    “The foundation of society, which is the family, is under stress,” Romney told an audience at Nova Southeastern University. Judges are making decisions that “threaten the fundamental values and the culture that has made America successful.”

    Yeah, damn those judges! Undermining the foundations of our society with pro-gay marriage decisions in Massachusetts and… uh… Massachusetts. Pretty much just Massachusetts. Unelected judges in Washington, Oregon, New York, and other states have all rejected gay marriage. But still, man, by recognizing and protecting the rights of an embattled minority, those judges in Massachusetts are like so totally threatening everything that’s made America successful—Tagg Romney will tell you all about it if you ask.

    I mean, just look at what happened to Canada! Judges imposed gay marriage on the whole entire country and now the Canadian dollar is totally in the toilet.

    Loonie powers over $1.08

    The Canadian dollar vaulted over the $1.08 (U.S.) mark to a record on Tuesday…. The currency extended gains to hit $108.35 after Bank of Canada Senior Deputy Governor Paul Jenkins dashed expectations of an interest-rate cut.

    It brings the loonie’s run to 5.8 per cent in the past month alone, making it the world’s top-performing major currency.

    Damn judges and their damn gay marriages.

    Assignment: Feed Cake to Levi

    posted by on November 6 at 12:48 PM


    Levi Fuller, a Seattle musician, asked me to bring vegan cake to his CD release party at the Sunset Tavern. I called up the PCC in Fremont and asked the manager if he would be interested in donating vegan cake to a musician. I made sure the manager knew the cake was not going to a good cause, just a guy who plays guitar. He agreed to donate the cake anyway.

    I picked up the cake at the PCC in Fremont. I had to get four of them because they were so small. I asked a woman waiting in the check-out line how to find Sunset Tavern and then I nodded my head without actually listening to her directions. She said something about Ballard street or avenue, or some street called Leary….the PCC murals of leaves and vines and produce made it impossible to listen to anything she was saying.

    I got lost and ended up near the warehouses lining shilshole avenue. I parked at an Office Depot, got out of the car and asked a boy in a Scion where the Sunset Tavern was. He had no idea, and neither did his dad who was helping him learn how to drive his Scion in the Office Depot parking lot.

    Eventually, I found the Sunset Tavern. I went backstage and surprised Levi with the vegan cakes from PCC. Levi was extremely appreciative. “Thank you thank you thank you,” he said to me.

    Then I fed the cake to Levi.


    Levi later told me via email that all the vegan cake he ate made his stomach feel wierd. Sorry, Levi.

    This is the video I made before Levi got all sick up on himself:

    Steven Blum
    Public Intern

    Listen to an acoustic performance by Levi Fuller, who was a guest on The Stranger’s Setlist podcast last week.

    Do you have an assignment for the Public Intern that doesn’t involve cake? He is sitting on the edge of his seat waiting for your request. Email

    Today in Extra Limbs

    posted by on November 6 at 11:34 AM


    Exhibit A: Girl Born With 8 Limbs Undergoes Surgery

    Exhibit B: Whatever the hell is going on here.

    (Thanks to Paulus for the heads-up on that second and perhaps apocryphal link.)

    Homebrew Molecular Biology Club

    posted by on November 6 at 11:30 AM

    Andy Grove, the co-founder and long-time CEO of Intel, threw down on modern biology.

    In a speech at the annual meeting of the Society for Neuroscience, he challenges big pharma companies, many of which haven’t had an important new compound approved in ages, and academic researchers who are content with getting NIH grants and publishing research papers with little regard to whether their work leads to something that can alleviate disease, to change their ways.


    Grove, as he continued his thoughts in the interview with Newsweek.

    The peer review system in grant making and in academic advancement has the major disadvantage of creating conformity of thoughts and values. It’s a modern equivalent of a Middle Ages guild, where you have to sing a particular way to get grants, promotions and tenure…There is no place for the wild ducks. The result is more sameness and less innovation. What we need is a cultural revolution in the research community, academic and non-academic. We need to give wild ducks the opportunity to emerge and quack their way to success…
    (Emphasis added.)

    Up to the mid-1970’s academic and industrial computer engineering could be subjected to the same criticism. Despite dramatic advances in technology—including Grove’s own microprocessor—computers were still thought of as mainframes, with extremely limited military and business applications. It took groups like the Homebrew Computer Clubliterally a bunch of unshaved guys in a garage—to create the personal computer and really revolutionize the world. It took guys setting up BBS’s in their basement, and noodling around with GOPHER to usher in the internet era. While Andy is correct: computers have become ever faster, they haven’t really become more capable since the paired birth of the PC and the Internet.

    Why hasn’t there been a Homebrew Molecular Biology Club? The technology behind molecular biology has arrived—equivalent to where computer components were in the mid-1970’s. Well designed commercial kits are available for just about any task.

    I’ve considered posting directions on Slog, using these kits, for a variety of projects one could do at home or in a garage: make glow-in-the-dark sourdough bread, detect rodent DNA in food, check your DNA to see if you’re related to Ghengis Khan.

    I’ve held off because molecular biology is inherently dangerous, much more so than building a computer or programming an Apple IIe. The same tools used to label, cut or modify experimental DNA would be glad to chew up yours—many are potent cancer-causing agents. Your glow-in-the-dark yeast could easily spread to your neighbor’s kitchen. Do you really want to know if there is rat shit in your dinner? KHAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAN!

    Am I wrong to be so cautious? Is Andy right?

    Hillary Releases Energy Plan; Frontrunners Have Shifted the Climate Debate

    posted by on November 6 at 11:30 AM

    Hillary Clinton released her energy plan yesterday, and—like the other frontrunners’ plans—it’s pretty awesome, with a few caveats that I’ll get to in a minute. Because the Edwards, Obama, and Clinton plans are so similar, I’ll just run through what they would do and explain the minor differences at the end.

    The good news: All three plans would implement a fully-auctioned cap-and-trade system, aiming for 80 percent emissions reductions by 2050. What that means, briefly: In a cap-and-trade system, the government establishes an overall cap on carbon emissions. Under that cap, all emissions are divided up into credits that represent permission to pollute. Companies are free to buy and sell pollution credits in the marketplace. A 100-percent-auctioned system forces companies to pay for every ton of emissions they produce—creating a market-based incentive to reduce emissions through innovation.

    A few differences between the candidates: Obama would use the revenues from pollution credits to develop clean energy and expand programs to help low-income people pay their electric bills. Clinton would invest revenues in energy efficiency programs and assistance to low- and middle-income families. And Edwards would invest the proceeds from his cap-and-trade system in clean energy. Both Clinton and Edwards would repeal subsidies to oil companies. Edwards would also share US technology with developing nations in exchange for binding commitments to reduce greenhouse-gas emissions; negotiate a new international treaty on climate change; and increase fuel-efficiency standards to 40 miles per gallon. Additionally, Edwards would create incentives for states to plan smart growth and transit-oriented development, reduce vehicle miles traveled, and encourage public transportation use—something neither of the other two Democratic frontrunners have made a top priority.

    The disappointing aspect of all the plans is their reliance on biodiesel and so-called “clean coal”, two heavily subsidized industries that are completely unsustainable and an oxymoron, respectively.

    That said, the really amazing thing about all these plans is how far they all go in terms of promoting efficiency, funding alternative energy sources, capping pollution, and cracking down on industry. Fully auctioned cap-and-trade used to be a pipe dream; now it’s the conventional line from the three mainstream Democratic candidates. At the same time, the “green gap” between Republicans and Democrats has become a national embarrassment. As TerraPass writer Adam Stein puts it, climate change “wraps together energy policy, economic considerations, and even national security concerns in a way that doesn’t fit comfortably into the old frames of conservation and regulation.”

    The Appeal of Rudy Giuliani

    posted by on November 6 at 11:15 AM

    New Hampshire’s Concord Monitor, via The Page, on a town hall meeting where Giuliani went bellicose (and nuclear) on Iran:

    Giuliani’s aggressive stance on Iran has worried some, especially Democrats who say the Bush administration’s tough talk on Iran resembles the preparation for war against Iraq in 2002 and 2003. But Giuliani’s message resonated with many who attended the town hall meeting yesterday.

    “He makes me feel safe,” said Jeanne Zelensky of Goffstown.

    Betty Larson of Amherst said, “He’s a mean son of a bitch, and that’s exactly what we need.

    Today The Stranger Suggests

    posted by on November 6 at 11:00 AM

    Civic Duty

    Vote! at BalMar

    You haven’t voted yet? There’s no time like the present, friend—ballots are due today. Given the rash of drinking-related scandals this election season (Richard McIver’s arrest for domestic violence, Venus Velázquez’s DUI), what better place to vote than your favorite bar? If you’re looking for inspiration, have two gin and tonics in Velázquez’s honor at the BalMar in Ballard or a few shots of Johnnie Walker Red at the Four Seas—McIver’s watering hole of choice. (The BalMar, 5449 Ballard Ave NW, 297-0500; the Four Seas, 714 S King St, 682-4900.) ERICA C. BARNETT

    Goodbye, Guillen

    posted by on November 6 at 10:58 AM

    You aren’t worth anywhere near 9 million now, you stupid dope.

    Re: Bush’s Terrible Numbers

    posted by on November 6 at 10:43 AM

    These numbers: 851 U.S. troops killed this year, making it the deadliest year of the four-and-half-year-old war in Iraq for American soldiers.

    George W. Bush: Approval Numbers Now Worse Than Nixon’s

    posted by on November 6 at 10:22 AM

    From ThinkProgress:

    Bush beats Nixon’s disapproval ratings. Sixty-four percent of Americans disapprove of the job President Bush is doing, and for “the first time in the history of the Gallup Poll, 50% say they ’strongly disapprove’ of the president. Richard Nixon had reached the previous high, 48%, just before an impeachment inquiry was launched in 1974.”

    Now is the time for congressional Dems to stop acting like George W. Bush, America’s most loathed president ever, has the country on his side. America hates this president. Fight him, you fucking pussies, fight him.

    The Count

    posted by on November 6 at 10:13 AM

    Fair enough, this corporate boss is not black.

    AS THE number of risky mortgage borrowers being turfed out of their homes escalates, so does the rate of Wall Street chief executives trudging dejectedly out of their corner offices. On Sunday November 4th Chuck Prince resigned as boss of America’s largest bank by assets, Citigroup. Less than a week earlier Stan O’Neal had been forced out as boss of Merrill Lynch.

    But check out this one.

    Time Warner named its president, Jeff Bewkes, as the next CEO to replace Dick Parsons.

    Parsons, who has served in the post for five years, announced that he is stepping down Jan. 1, but will remain in the chairman’s post.

    Parsons is one of a handful of African-American executives in this country. He was tasked with restoring the stature of the world’s largest media conglomerate.

    He helped repair the damage from Time Warner’s merger with AOL seven years ago.

    Odd Fellows Sale: The PR

    posted by on November 6 at 10:05 AM

    Yesterday, Ted Schroth sent out a press release finally (finally) announcing his intent to purchase Odd Fellows Hall.

    I’ll quote a few relevant passages here. The whole text follows the jump:

    “We are pleased that this historic and culturally significant property will be preserved and enhanced by a responsible developer who has previous experience in the neighborhood, a vested interest in maintaining the creative vibrancy of the neighborhood and who simply likes the property,” commented [current owner Paul] Verba.
    The planned upgrades for the building currently include the following work:

    • Renovation of the building entries and interior common areas
    • Replanting street trees
    • Some building system and life safety upgrades
    • Enhancing the exterior façade and storefront area
    • Reconfiguration of the top (office) floor into larger office spaces
    • Upgrading the retail level of the building and attracting more pedestrian-oriented uses, including restaurants and boutique retailers

    “Paying retail for a building and not tearing it down creates the economic reality of having to raise rents to market levels in order to make retaining the building feasible from an investment standpoint. We are sensitive to the circumstances of the existing arts-focused tenants in the building and look forward to continuing to work together with them as we explore creative solutions to try to retain the arts culture at the Odd Fellows Lodge. Sensitivity to history and design were a driving focus to us at Trace Lofts / Trace North, and critical to the success of that project.”

    Continue reading "Odd Fellows Sale: The PR" »

    Olbermann’s Special Comment Last Night

    posted by on November 6 at 10:00 AM


    MSNBC’s Keith Olbermann was on fire last night. Sometimes his special comments are a little—oh, I dunno—overwrought. But his commentary on Bush’s illegal, shameful backing of torture, and Democrats complicity (fuck you, Schumer & Feinstein), was spot-on. Moving, even. And, hey, love the new set. Crooks and Liars has links to the video. Consider it required viewing.

    Conclusive Proof That Seattleites Are Too Nice For Their Own or Anyone Else’s Good

    posted by on November 6 at 9:45 AM

    This just in from Hot Tipper Old Greg:

    I was riding the #44 Metro yesterday through the University District where a woman on crutches got on and sat across from me at the front of the bus. She began clipping her fingernails, which is gross enough in itself. What really got my gag reflex going was when she went for a second pass and one of the fingernail clippings flew off and hit one of our fellow bus-riders IN THE FACE. The worst part is that neither of the parties involved said anything—no apology and no confrontation. Are Seattleites way too passive? Yes.

    Jamaica’s Powerless, Oppressed, Terrorized Homosexuals Plan to Take Over Planet, Destroy Life on Earth

    posted by on November 6 at 9:35 AM

    Man, it’s gotta suck to be a gay or lesbian person trapped in Jamaica, which is in contention with places like Saudi Arabia, Russia, and Latvia for the most poisonously anti-gay country on earth. Check out this utterly insane column in the Jamaica Observer:

    Of greater concern to me is what I call “the marching brigade of homosexual activism” across the planet, and its implications for national policies and legislation. Let no one fool you. In the same way that a group of men gathered together around a table in Europe and decided to carve up the entire earth for their own self-interest, and then to enslave the majority of people on the planet, is the same way that the powerful homosexual lobby is seeking to “homosexualise” the world.

    The deliberate and calculated strategy that is employed is not only about blacklisting and starving entertainers, and silencing public officials. The objective is to work to overturn the laws of sovereign nations and to then effectively influence national policies. But the most powerful strategy is what I call the “socialisation of the young”. The plan is that you “teach the children, and you win the war.”

    My own position on homosexuality is very clear and simple. I love all of God’s creations—heterosexuals and homosexuals alike—and I understand that all of us are prone to excesses, rebellion and sin. I believe that every adult has a right to his or her own sexual preference, and that sex is a private, not a public matter. What I don’t accept is “force-feeding” or manipulation. It is also clear to me that if the homosexual movement is completely successful, the world as we know it would cease to exist.

    I love you. But you’re a threat to the survival the planet, man. And stay away from my kids, cocksucker.

    The whole column’s worth a read—particular the part where the columnist compares children to sponges and suggests that homosexuality is something that can be absorbed, like a glass of spilled milk. The column’s name? “Heart to Heart.” The columnist’s name? Betty Anne Blaine. The columnist’s email address?

    And be polite, if you’re inclined to write. Furious, name-calling emails from outraged ‘mos will only convince Betty that we are out to get her and that her paranoia is therefore justified.

    Ron Paul Takes in More Than $4 Million Online in One Day

    posted by on November 6 at 9:25 AM

    And it was all in honor of Guy Fawkes Day. What?

    Fawkes was a British mercenary who failed in his attempt to kill King James I on Nov. 5, 1605. He also was the model for the protagonist in the movie “V for Vendetta.” Paul backers motivated donors on the Internet with mashed-up clips of the film on the online video site YouTube as well as the Guy Fawkes Day refrain: “Remember, remember the 5th of November.”

    Here’s one of the videos:

    And please note:

    Paul’s total deposed Mitt Romney as the single-day fundraising record holder in the Republican presidential field. When it comes to sums amassed in one day, Paul now ranks only behind Democrats Hillary Rodham Clinton, who raised nearly $6.2 million on June 30, and Barack Obama.

    Former Howard Dean online strategist Jerome Armstrong, told about the fundraiser, replied:

    Damn. Wow. Um, that’s pretty awesome… What Paul is doing — or what his supporters are doing — is really impressive.

    But do his supporters really understand all of Ron Paul’s positions?

    Nuclear Warfare a GoGo

    posted by on November 6 at 9:20 AM

    Posted by Ryan S. Jackson

    In retrospect, the Iraq war would seem to have been one of the more subtle touches of foreign policy to come out of the Bush White House in 2003, as the all-purpose Plan B appeared to be nuclear strikes against the majority of the Arab world:

    Via the increasingly invaluable Spencer Ackerman:

    Despite years of denials, a secret planning document issued by the U.S. military’s nuclear-weapons command in 2003 ordered preparations for nuclear strikes on countries seeking to acquire weapons of mass destruction, including Iran, Saddam Hussein-era Iraq, Libya and Syria.

    A briefing on the document obtained by the Federation of American Scientists, showed that the document itself was created to flesh out a 2001 Bush administration revision of long-standing nuclear-weapons policy, known as the Nuclear Posture Review.

    It’s not entirely easy to tell from the planning document what WMD-desiring countries are listed as targets for a possible U.S. nuclear attack. (See page 11 for all the redactions on this crucial point.) But the FAS hazards an educated guess based on photography included in the briefing document: Iran, Iraq, Libya, North Korea and Syria.

    The briefing document also references a “target base” for prospective elimination with nuclear weapons. However, the actual document redacts what that target base might be. FAS contends it probably refers to either the stockpiles of WMD themselves or the command center for any state seeking to deploy WMD. And that’s a further sign of specific planning for a full-blown nuclear conflict, the FAS writes: “The creation of a ‘target base’ indicates that the planning went further than simple retaliatory punishment with one or a few weapons, but envisioned actual nuclear warfighting intended to annihilate a wide range of facilities in order to deprive the states the ability to launch and fight with WMD.”

    Notes from the Prayer Warrior

    posted by on November 6 at 9:15 AM

    Again with the kneepads…



    Dear Prayer Warrior,

    Put on your knee pads for this. We have one week left before the annual stockholder meeting with Microsoft. Please pray for the details to be finished, and for a clear, solid presentation.

    Pastor Hutch

    Middle East Dialectic Blues

    posted by on November 6 at 8:59 AM

    What I actually like about the scary news from Pakistan (if it actually leads to an open struggle between Bhutto and her secularist faction/the Islamist faction/and Musharraf’s secular military faction) is this: We’ll finally have an answer.

    Pakistan has been the picture of denial for almost ten years now with its intractable rivalries maintaining a heated limbo. Much like the open fight that broke out in Palestine this year between Hamas and Fatah, we are finally getting to the bottom of things.

    The Morning News

    posted by on November 6 at 7:56 AM

    Pakistan: Supreme Court chief justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry urged protesters to keep up the pressure. “The lawyers should convey my message to the people to rise up and restore the Constitution… I am under arrest now, but soon I will also join you in your struggle.”

    Afghanistan: At least 64 dead after a suicide bombers set themselves off during a welcome parade for visiting lawmakers.

    Stupiddemocratstan: Thanks in large part to Sens. Chuck Schumer Diane Feinsten, Bush’s choice for Attorney General is all but guaranteed a confirmation before Thanksgiving.

    Black Gold, Texas Tea: Now close to $97 a barrel, just in time for winter.

    Getting Them While They’re Young: Antiabortion student groups now allowed at Virginia public schools.

    The Important Things: Scientists may have found a solution to the dandruff problem.

    Sharing the Road(s): Seattle has passed its 10-year Bicycle Master Plan.

    Too Successful: Seattle Public Libraries are finding it hard to meet demands.

    Dusty Bones: Fragments from a 600-year-old skull have been found in Ritzville, Washington.

    Vote Today: Our endorsements are here.

    John Waters Says Smoke Anyway

    Vote Today

    posted by on November 6 at 6:54 AM

    I’m voting at Victrola right now.


    When and where are you voting? Or have you voted already?

    Looking for More Info on the Strike?

    posted by on November 6 at 1:37 AM

    Yesterday I posted some of Didion’s writing about the 1988 writers’ strike in Hollywood as a way of providing some perspective on writers’ strikes in general and/or jumpstarting a conversation about Didion in general (favorite topic of yours truly). Nevertheless, all that the commenters wanted to talk about were the particulars of the current strike.

    So it seems worth mentioning that if for whatever reason you really do care about the strike, you shouldn’t be reading Slog. You should be reading Nikki Finke’s blog.

    It’s got everything—the number of writers who were striking on day one, broken down by employer; news about the specific ways celebrities are supporting the writers (Patricia Arquette was delivering Starbucks coffee and pastries to the picketers); the statement of support from Barack Obama (this is “a test of whether media corporations are going to give writers a fair share of the wealth their work creates or continue concentrating profits in the hands of their executives”); a photo of Tina Fey holding a protest sign; anecdotal stuff about what the executives are going through—

    I heard from someone who works in Fox Television that the honking horns were driving all the executives crazy. They were screaming in the halls about it, and couldn’t get any work done. SO KEEP UP THE GOOD WORK!

    —and much, much more.

    It Turns Out Some Republican Men Still Want to Sleep With Women. Not Their Wives Maybe, but…

    posted by on November 6 at 12:04 AM

    Postman’s got the story. State House Rep. Jim Dunn (R-Vancouver) is getting reprimanded by State GOP leadership for making an inappropriate comment to a female staffer: Something about buying her a drink so he could sleep with her.

    Postman reports:

    Dunn said that the incident occurred about three weeks ago in Tri-Cities. After the subcommittee meeting, a group of legislators and staffers were having drinks. He says he did make an inappropriate comment to “a young lady.” He was buying her a drink and said something like, in his words, “I’m buying you this so I can take you home, something like that.”

    “I made it and I knew it as a bad remark,” he said. There were 20 to 30 other people around, he said. “If I meant it, I wouldn’t have said it in a crowd.”

    Dunn said he met with DeBolt and other Republican leaders Friday. DeBolt, he said, asked him to resign. He said someone in the meeting threatened that if he didn’t resign his wife would find out about his behavior. Dunn says he had already told his wife what happened and she fully supports him staying in and fighting.

    “I told him, ‘Richard, you know I’m not going to resign.’ It was an inadvertent bad remark. I apologized for it to the young lady. It was uncalled for.”
    But Rep. Sharon Tomiko Santos, D-Seattle, was at the table that night and says Dunn is telling a sanitized version of events. She said Dunn joined a table of legislators and staffers and insisted on buying everyone a drink.

    When the female staffer asked why he was buying her a drink, Dunn made his comment. Santos would not repeat it for me, but said it was “far more explicit” than Dunn’s version and “highly inappropriate.”

    Monday, November 5, 2007

    I Know…

    posted by on November 5 at 5:54 PM

    It’s not new, but it’s still fucking funny.

    While We’re on San Diego

    posted by on November 5 at 5:30 PM

    Earlier today, I linked to a nice long piece on Robert Irwin’s show at MCASD, which ends with a consideration of art’s role while the city burns.

    I also got an email from Seattle artist John Feodorov: Native American performance artist James Luna’s home burned to the ground during the fires. To help:

    If you would like to help please send your contributions to Circuit Network at 2940 16th Street, San Francisco, CA 94103. You can make your checks payable to James Luna or if you would like to have your donation be tax deductible, make the check payable to Circuit Network.

    Circuit Network is James Luna’s management organization, a non-profit arts service organization. 100% of all donations will go directly to James and Johanna to help them rebuild their home.

    Good Shit or Bullshit

    posted by on November 5 at 5:13 PM

    A memo leaked from the Collier County Sheriff’s Department has parents and press in Florida going apeshit. Cops say there’s a new drug on the scene:

    Jenkem is a homemade substance which consists of fecal matter and urine. The fecal matter and urine are placed in a bottle or jar and covered most commonly with a balloon. The container is then placed in a sunny area for several hours or days until fermented. The contents of the container will separate and release a gas, which is captured in the balloon. Inhaling the gas is said to have a euphoric high similar to ingesting cocaine but with strong hallucinations of times past.

    Slang terms: Winnie, Shit, Runners, Fruit from Crack Pipe, Leroy Jenkems, Might, Butthash, and Waste.

    In August Stranger intern Jeff Kirby had the, um, scoop on its popularity in Africa. But law enforcement warns, “Jenkem is now a popular drug in American Schools.”

    Okay, this shit is bullshit. Right? Rancid excreta get you high? If that were true, we would have discovered it before beer. Or maybe not. The BBC reports a high similar to an intense mushroom trip.

    “… with Jenkem, I see visions. I see my mother who is dead and I forget about the problems in my life.”

    Some psychedelic mushrooms contain a substance called indole, which is also found in… fecal matter.

    So, okay, maybe breathing deep in the Honey Bucket – which I’ve never been wiling to try – has its rewards. I won’t do it. And I seriously doubt Americans, who have access to fine whisky and great pot, are willing to choose jenkem for a popular rush, either. For “butthash” to be “popular in schools,” as law enforcement declares, students would have to carry around jars of shit and piss in their backpacks, inconspicuously slip those jars into the sun, and take lungfulls with their friends… I don’t believe that’s happening—and neither do kids in Florida.

    Snopes says the status is undetermined. So, in the interest of science, we at Slog are open to the possibility that poo huffing is all the rage in the U.S. If you know a student who might verify jenkem’s popularity, if you have ever used jenkem – or even know someone who has – put your testimony in comments.

    Re: Clinton and the Boys

    posted by on November 5 at 4:55 PM

    Erica says she’s finding the discussion about Hillary Clinton and gender to be tedious (even though she’s posted on it four times since Friday). Since I know Erica wouldn’t deliberately distort my words, I’ll assume her boredom is responsible for the fact that she’s doesn’t seem to be reading my posts accurately.

    Despite what Erica keeps repeating (here and here), I never wrote that Clinton has a “gender problem.” I wrote about Clinton’s “gender politics” (here and here). It might serve a certain type of argument to cast me as someone who thinks Clinton’s gender is a problem. But that’s not, in fact, what I wrote.

    In addition, Erica wants to lump me in with the crackpot theorists she was referring to in this post, and she tells me I should respond on Slog if I have a problem with that.

    I’m used to Erica calling me names on Slog when she doesn’t like what I’ve written. (And she’s not the only name-caller on Slog, to be fair.) But I like to correct the record when something I’ve written has been misrepresented, and although I wasn’t going to bother earlier, now that she’s dragged this into another go-round, I will.

    As she’s gone about suggesting that I am a naif and a crackpot on women’s issues, Erica has not only misquoted me (as explained above) but she’s also distorted my words. I did not write, as she contends, that I believe women will vote for Clinton because they see themselves, and her, as helpless victims. Here’s what I wrote:

    The Clinton campaign is trying to push women’s buttons, getting them to rally around Clinton out of a sense of shared victimhood. Maybe she’ll be effective in this.

    See the difference? What I wrote attributes to the Clinton campaign an apparent idea that they can rally women around a sense of shared victimhood. What Erica wrote attributes to me the idea that I think women will vote for Clinton because they see themselves, and her, as helpless victims.

    Maybe some will find that to be a small and subtle distortion, or merely an example of boredom-induced misremembering. And perhaps it is all about boredom. Or maybe I wrote that sentence in a confusing way. But, again, the effect is to add to the presentation of me as anti-woman, a crackpot, not to be listened to, etc. It also ends up operating in a style akin to many politically-motivated smears. Here’s the time-tested strategy: Mis-attribute, then attack based on this mis-attribution, and presto, the accused has two jobs: Defending himself and clearing up the confusion. This tactic is beneath Erica, of course, and therefore must be unintentional—a product, I assume, of the tedium of this exchange.

    As it turns out, plenty of people saw Clinton and her campaign as believing they can rally women around a sense of shared victimhood. Try Maureen Dowd, Greg Sargent, and Ruth Marcus for starters. If they’re all crackpots, then I’m in good company.

    Now on to Erica’s recent “Clinton and the Boys” post:

    Erica’s argument relies upon making an absolute distinction between the words that have come out of Hillary Clinton’s mouth and the words that have come out the mouths (and keyboards) of her campaign staffers. It’s very clear that the Clinton campaign, most likely with the Lazio incident in mind, was trying after the last debate to paint Clinton as the victim of six aggressive men. They even attempted to turn this idea of Clinton’s victimhood into a fundraising opportunity. Erica writes:

    So far, no one has been able to point once to anything said by Clinton herself that implies gender-based self-pity.

    Yes, and that is no doubt the strategy. Again, it’s common political ploy: Let your surrogates say something that, if you said it yourself, might put you in a box.

    But the fact is, Clinton’s operatives work for Clinton. And, as Greg Sargent writes:

    You’d have to be very credulous indeed not to believe that the campaign is explicitly trying to emphasize, for various political reasons, the fact that she’s a woman getting hammered by a bunch of men.

    The Clinton campaign works for Hillary Clinton. You can defend Clinton based on an accounting of just the words that come out of her mouth (and not the mouths and keyboards of her surrogates), but most political reporters find that to be a naive approach.

    Again, Clinton is responsible for her campaign. Her campaign has been sending mixed signals on the role that her gender played in motivating attacks on Clinton during the last debate. It’s completely reasonable to come to the conclusion that the Clinton campaign thought the suggestion of a sexist motivation for the attacks would have a rallying effect among women (like the Lazio debate incident did). And it’s completely normal (in politics, at least) for the Clinton campaign to backtrack from that approach now that it’s run into resistance from leading opinion makers, male and female.

    What would be highly unusual is for political reporters to accept Erica’s idea that what comes out of a campaign surrogate’s mouth (or keyboard) can’t be connected to the individual who is running the campaign (in this case, Clinton). In fact, I bet I wouldn’t have to look too hard to find an instance when Erica held a local politician responsible for something his or her surrogate said.

    Gov. Gregoire Has Not Endorsed Democrat Bill Sherman

    posted by on November 5 at 4:53 PM

    Democratic Gov. Christine Gregoire is remaining “neutral” in the King County Prosecutor’s race.

    I’ve already bashed Democratic state Sen. Adam Kline for endorsing the Republican in the race, Dan Satterberg.

    But I was a little stunned to find that the Democratic governor has not enthusiastically endorsed a Democrat like Bill Sherman—a young, electable Democrat whom progressive voters in Seattle and King County are excited about. Gregoire needs a little traction in King County and getting behind a promising local candidate like Sherman could help. Or, more succinctly: Not helping the Ds win the KC Prosectuor’s Office could hurt.

    I called the governor’s campaign outfit today and asked a simple question: “Where’s the governor on the KC Prosecutor’s race?”

    Campaign head Kelly Wicker said this: “The King County Prosectuor’s race. The person I have to ask about that is on the phone.”

    Okay, what? You guys don’t know right off the bat where the Democratic governor is on the King County Prosecutor’s race? You know—the race the State GOP just dumped $126,000 into?

    Gregoire’s folks were pretty slow about calling me back, so I called Sherman’s campaign, and they told me that Gregoire has not endorsed Sherman—something about having to work with whoever wins.

    Again: What? Part of a governor’s job is building his or her party. Gregoire’s party, if she isn’t clear on that, is the Democratic Party. If Satterberg wins, the governor won’t owe him any kind of explanation. She’s the Democratic governor. He was the Republican candidate. It’s kind of a no-brainer, unless you’re Christine Gregoire, I guess.

    Best in Thought

    posted by on November 5 at 4:38 PM

    The new music of Burial has inspired me to make this quick list of key (key for me) philosophical essays.

    Walter Benjamin: “Theses on the Philosophy of History”
    klee_engel_higher-res.jpgThere is no better or more complete concept of history.

    Mike Davis: “Dead Cities”
    g_08.jpgThis work is urban theory at its terminal point.

    Roland Barthes: “Sade”
    Picture%201.jpg Everything you wanted to know about sex.

    Louis Althusser: “Ideology and the State”
    spaceneedle.jpg Theory as a missile that seeks and destroys what it seeks.

    Staurt Hall: “The After Life of Frantz Fanon: Why Fanon? Why Now? Why Black Skin, White Masks?”
    fanon.jpg Really, what else does a black man want?

    Flickr Photo of the Day

    posted by on November 5 at 4:20 PM

    Did somebody lose their cheerleader?


    From Stranger’s Flickr pool, from new member gluechunk.

    Kill Whitey

    posted by on November 5 at 3:55 PM

    I’m all for hunting, but this is a sin.

    Minnesota Woman Shoots Rare Albino Deer on Opening Day of Hunting Season.

    “She said it was thrilling to see the rare animal but one hundred times more exciting to take it home.”


    Or, To Quote Digby

    posted by on November 5 at 2:59 PM

    … on Clinton and gender:

    Half of this country is female and they’ve noticed, in case these manly men haven’t, that presidential politics is a very exclusive boys club and we don’t find it all that odd to mention it. Certainly, if it’s ok for politicians to literally walk around with a codpiece to show their masculine bona fides [see second-to-last picturebelow], I don’t think it’s out of line for a female candidate to speak to a younger generation of women at her college and take a little bit of pride in the institution and her own accomplishments —- since she does happen to be the first serious female contender for president in the whole history of the country. Excuse me for thinking she has the damned right to do it.

    All these squirming little fools who talk about how they have to “cross their legs” whenever they hear her voice, or hallucinate that she’s “acting like a little girl” or any of a dozen other ridiculous, sexist responses to Clinton are revealing far more about themselves than they are about her. If anyone’s playing the gender card it’s them —- and it’s a picture of a quivering little boy crying in the corner because he doesn’t want to share his toys with a girl. Tough. Eat some pork rinds and stfu.

    Today in Line Out

    posted by on November 5 at 2:45 PM

    Waaah!: I missed the Hold Steady Show.

    Battles @ Neumo’s: Jonathan Zwickel’s review and video from the show.

    A Good-Ass Time: Little Brother wreck Chop Suey.

    Tour Diary: Arthur & Yu write from the road.

    Head Case: Trent Moorman’s love for Rock Hard Cases.

    Burial: Charles Mudede’s final statement on the only musician he can ever talk about anymore.

    Tonight in Music: The Intelligence, the Octopus Project, Ben Lee, and others.

    PaRappa the Rapper: PSP releases Terry Miller’s favorite decade-old Playstation game.

    Last Night at the Comet: Eric Grandy reviews the Clipd Beats/Partman Parthorse/Casy & Brian show.

    Hot Water Music: New album and shows announced for the new year.


    Joan Didion: “Writers have never been much admired in Hollywood…”

    posted by on November 5 at 2:27 PM

    Does anyone in Seattle care about the writer’s strike that started today in Hollywood? According to the L.A. Times (same story Brad linked to in the morning news): “Both sides are girding for what many believe will be a long and debilitating strike, potentially more disruptive than the 22-week walkout by writers in 1988, which cost the entertainment industry an estimated $500 million.” I just asked the people at the table next to me at Cafe Presse if they cared about the strike and the question barely registered. (Hey, Mudede, you’re a “Hollywood writer”—do you care?)

    I only care because that mention of the 1988 strike is a perfect excuse to put up a Slog post directing you toward this excellent and often overlooked Joan Didion book—really, get yourself a copy, it’s $11!—which has, in addition to the best essays ever written about the Central Park jogger and Patty Hearst, an essay called “Los Angeles Days,” about earthquakes, Aaron Spelling’s mansion, and the writers’ strike of 1988. (You can also find “Los Angeles Days” in the Everyman’s Library collection of all of Didion’s nonfiction, published last year, with it’s too-small type and Bible-thin pages.)

    A couple quotes from “Los Angeles Days”—which don’t do it justice, you have to read them in context. But here’s a taste:

    Writers have never been much admired in Hollywood. In an industry predicated on social fluidity, on the daily recalibration and reassessment of status and power, screenwriters, who perform a function that remains only dimly understood even by the people who hire them, occupy a notably static place: even the most successful of them have no real power, and therefore no real status.


    I heard repeatedly during the strike that I, as a member of the Guild “but an intelligent person,” had surely failed to understand what “the leadership” of the Guild was doing to me; when I said that I did understand it, that I had lost three pictures during the course of the strike and would continue to vote against a settlement until certain money issues had been resolved, I was advised that such intransigence would lead nowhere, because “the producers won’t budge,” because “they’re united on this,” because “they’re just going to write off the Guild,” and because, an antic note, “they’re going to start hiring college kids—they’re even going to start hiring journalists.”

    It’s a long, sharp, fantastic piece, and it ends with an anecdote about going to the Democratic National Convention in Atlanta in July of 1988—only then, Didion writes, “did the emotional core of the strike come clear to me.” She goes on:

    I had gone to Atlanta in an extra-industry role, that of “reporter” (or, as we say in Hollywood, “journalist”), with credentials that gave me a seat in the Omni but access to only a rotating pass to go on the floor. I was waiting for this rotating pass one evening when I ran into a directior I knew, Paul Mazursky. We talked for a moment, and I noticed that he, like all the other industry people I saw in Atlanta, had a top pass, one of the several all-access passes. In this case it was a floor pass, and, since I was working and he seemed not about to go on the floor, I asked if I might borrow it for half an hour.

    He considered this.

    He would, he said, “really like” to do this for me, but thought not. He seemed surprised that I had asked, and uncomfortable that I had breached the natural order of the community as we both knew it: directors and actors and producers, I should have understood, have floor passes. Writers do not, which is why they strike.

    Clinton and the Boys

    posted by on November 5 at 1:38 PM

    You know, I certainly don’t want to belabor the tedious discussion about Clinton’s “gender problem,” but I do have to address a few points. As Eli noted earlier, after Clinton’s six male opponents ganged up on her during the most recent debate, Clinton’s campaign called it “the politics of pile on” and dismissed charges that she dodged questions. Later, Clinton told a crowd at Wellesley, her alma mater, that attending an all-female school prepared her for the “boys’ club” of politics, a statement the press and many bloggers have described as “playing the gender card.”

    Dodging questions? Accusing opponents of piling on? Sounds pretty normal to me: She’s a politician, and like all politicians, she takes on questions she wants to answer, dodges the ones she doesn’t; and when her opponents pile onto her because she’s the frontrunner, she makes a note of it. I’m not sure dodging questions and slapping back at opponents would have been seen as “breaking, just like a little girl” (as Maureen Dowd described her) if a male frontrunner had done the exact same thing.

    Second, it seems to me that so far, no one has been able to point once to anything said by Clinton herself that implies gender-based self-pity. The narrative that all the bloggers and political writers (and yes, they’re mostly male, and yes, that fact is relevant, although it certainly doesn’t disqualify them in any way from commenting) have glommed on to—“Hillary pretends to be strong but cries like a little girl when she’s challenged”—seems to be based solely on her statement that the political world is a “boys’ club.” That’s it. Nowhere has she brought up sexism. Nowhere has she used “gender stereotypes as a defense.” Nowhere has she “played the woman-as-victim card.” Some of her supporters may have done so, but Clinton herself? Nope.

    However: If we’re STILL going to accuse Clinton of playing the gender card in the absence of any evidence that she’s done so, let’s be fair. Here’s a look at a few of the times MALE candidates have played the gender/masculinity card:







    Shocking, I know! Can someone get the Politico on the horn?

    Countdown to Election Day: Where’s Dino?

    posted by on November 5 at 1:18 PM

    Still feeling like gubernatorial candidate Dino Rossi hasn’t taken decisive stands on any of the ballot measures that voters themselves have to vote on in the next 24 hours, I sent off this e-mail to his campaign spokeswomen last week. I haven’t heard back yet.

    From: Subject: Propositions Date: November 1, 2007 11:24:03 AM PDT To:

    Does Dino know how he’s going to vote yet on:

    Prop. 1 (roads and transit)
    4204 (simple majority for schools)
    8206 (rainy day fund)
    67 (insurance claim rules)
    960 (two thirds for tax increases)

    I have a good sense of where he is on most of these, but I’d like to hear his thumbs up/thumbs down for certain. Election day is less than a week away & I believe that someone who wants to be the governor should be able to say definitively how they will vote on major measures that voters themselves must say yes or no on as well.


    Humongous Homogeneity

    posted by on November 5 at 12:54 PM


    130th and Dayton, Bitter Lake

    Local developer Howland Homes is planning a 36 townhome developement on a 1 acre property on 130th and Dayton. While 10, 12, or 16 townhome developments aren’t completely unheard of, 36 seems like a lot, especially in a neighborhood that still doesn’t have sidewalks. Still, area residents aren’t fighting the massive project because they know a massive wave of development is coming to the neighborhood.

    Bitterlake and the nearby Linden neighborhood are already going to be seeing an influx of nearly 2,000 people in the next few years, as several massive apartment complexes go up in the area. Right now, the neighborhood is more concerned about issues with traffic, parking and pedestrian safety than aesthetics, but neighbors have still been participating in the Department of Planning and Development’s (DPD) design review process for the Howland project.


    “It’s pretty sardined in there,” says Dale Johnson, President of the Broadview Community Council. Indeed, Howland’s development will is going to cram a number of people into a not-so-big space. What’s more, a potential mass of drab, boxy townhomes certainly brings up the issue of density versus aesthetics. Howland’s past projects—pictured above and below—aren’t offensively ugly, but they don’t stray far from the current trend of bland, standardized townhome design.


    Although Johnson is concerned about the size and look of the project, he says he knows density is coming to the neighborhood and he trusts the city to keep things under control. “I presume that DPD regulates [these things],” Johnson says. “We’re [more] concerned about the city putting in sidewalks and drainage to support that density.”


    DPD is currently working passing new townhome design regulations that would—among other things—require developers to install a certain number of doors and windows on townhomes, lower fence heights, and require townhomes’ front doors to face the street.
    The code revisions are expected to be done third-quarter 2008.

    At Your Service

    posted by on November 5 at 12:48 PM

    A reader e-mails:

    Hello Eli,

    I can’t think for myself. I value the election cheat sheet in all its wisdom. I thought I saw it in a recent paper edition. Is it on the website somewhere? Please direct me. Thank you ever so much.

    Here you go.

    Colbert Ends Race

    posted by on November 5 at 12:46 PM

    Damn—now who I am gonna support?

    Stephen Colbert has dropped his bid for the White House.

    His announcement came after the South Carolina Democratic Executive Council voted last week to keep the host of “The Colbert Report” off the state’s primary ballot. The vote was 13-3….

    “Although I lost by the slimmest margin in presidential election history—only 10 votes—I have chosen not to put the country through another agonizing Supreme Court battle,” Colbert said Monday in a statement. “It is time for this nation to heal.”

    Hm… maybe I’ll throw my support to Fred Thompson. He’s a Republican, sure, but he does have a convicted cocaine dealer on his campaign staff.

    Destroying Constitutional Freedoms in 10 Easy Steps

    posted by on November 5 at 12:42 PM

    There’s been a lot of buzz about this Naomi Wolf piece. It comes to mind as I read about what’s happening now in Pakistan. Yesterday the Constitution was suspended. Today the Pakistani police are attacking and rounding up lawyers. Musharraf seems to be on about Step 7.

    Meanwhile, Bill Richardson is suggesting that Dick Cheney be sent to Pakistan to explain to Musharraf why protecting Constitutional freedoms is important.

    Update: Those Suspicous GOP Donations to Dan Satterberg

    posted by on November 5 at 12:40 PM

    For those that missed the Slog coverage over the weekend, here’s the deal: Big donors to Dan Satterberg, the GOP candidate for King County Prosecutor, appear to have also funneled money through the State GOP to Satterberg. That is a violation of campaign finance rules. Donations to parties cannot be earmarked for specific candiates because it allows big donors to circumvent contribution limits.

    Here are the basics from my Slog posts:

    Late yesterday [Friday night], the GOP made a huge contribution to Satterberberg’s campaign—$81,000.

    Cross reference this list of Dan Satterberg donors with this list of donors to the Washington State Republican Party. You’ll find that people who made big donations to Satterberg, the Republican candidate for KC Prosecutor, subsequently made large donations to a Washington State GOP account that has now downloaded about $125,000 to Satterberg.

    78 percent of the money in the account, $139,500 out of $176,700, came from Satterberg supporters, most of whom had already maxed out to the candidate.

    The Democratic candidate, Bill Sherman, held a press conference this morning saying our campaign finance laws “aren’t a set of cones that you run around to the finish line. It’s not an obstacle course, it’s a set of ethical standards.” He said Satterberg had “duped voters” by receiving massive donations from the GOP that came from Satterberg donors “under cover of the night.”

    The transfer came on Friday night and didn’t get much attention over the weekend as voters were casting ballots and Satterberg’s new round of expensive TV ads ($177,000 worth now) were on the air. Indeed, while the TV cameras at Sherman’s press conference today seemed to be getting great footage of Sherman trashing Satterberg’s ethics, the TV exposure is going to be a little late coming after Satterberg’s GOP-funded TV ad blitz.

    Asked how this was any different than Democratic Party donations going to the Sherman campaign or any other campaign—say, John Kerry in 2004—Sherman was emphatic. He explained that the GOP account that kicked in the $126,000 to Satterberg had been “dormant” until mid-October. Then, all of a sudden, after several big donors who had already contributed to Satterberg made hefty donations to the GOP account, the GOP sent that money to Satterberg. In contrast, he said, the Ds’ state account—which contributed $30,000 to Sherman—has thousands of small donations.

    I checked the Washington State Democratic Central Committee Nonexempt, and Sherman’s right. It’s not “thousands,” but it’s hundreds (as opposed to the 20 donations in the GOP account), and there’s $85,000 from small contributors out of $597,000 total. It’s also been active all year. (Not active enough, if you ask me. They should have downloaded more to Sherman.)

    At the press conference, Sherman said he had “heard rumors” earlier this month that the GOP was soliciting money from Satterberg donors. I asked Sherman if he had talked to specific people who had knowledge that this had happened and whether those people would be part of his complaint with the PDC. He said he had talked to someone, a Republican, who had talked to people who had been solicited, and they were told the money would go directly to Satterberg. However, this person is not willing to go on record with the Public Disclosure Commission because it could damage the party and the person’s standing within it.

    Confidential to the Republican Who Knows Their Party is Breaking the Law:
    You need to go to the PDC with this information. If the party ostracizes you because you come forward with this information, that would only confirm that they are in the wrong, and it would vindicate you for doing the right thing. Be a good Republican.

    Confidential to the Public Disclosure Commission: You should offer this person an anonymity agreement.

    The GOP should not be able to flout basic campaign laws.

    Hey, Thanks!

    posted by on November 5 at 11:50 AM

    Last Monday I put out an urgent Slog distress call seeking headphone advice. I had been reduced to borrowing these at work…


    …and I wanted the wisdom of the Slog crowd to help me find a new pair. I had a fantasy:

    My fantasy headphones are like giant earmuffs—the earpieces covered in all kinds of softness, the size large enough that the points of contact mostly involve my head and not my ears themselves. Also must be: Wearable with glasses and powerful enough to withstand an office of extroverts.

    I received a lot of tips and advice, and I now recommend this comment thread to anyone seeking a new pair of headphones. The most-recommended headphones to suit my purposes: The Sony MDR-7506s, a couple different kinds of Sennheisers, and some Bose noise-canceling headphones that are so expensive I saw them offered somewhere with a payment plan.

    In the end I took the “just go down to Guitar Center” advice (thank you, lilblackcat) and picked up a pair of the Sony MDR-7506s. Comfy bliss! Thanks, Slog.


    For Charles

    posted by on November 5 at 11:50 AM

    An entire blog based on pairing buildings with songs.

    (Thank you, Guardian, my captain.)

    What the Hell is Joel Connelly Talking About?

    posted by on November 5 at 11:45 AM

    Joel Connelly and Joni Balter, talking to Steve Scherr about the Seattle School Board elections on KUOW this morning:

    Connelly: “I think that it is a tribute to the system that for such a thankless job we can get challengers of such quality … to basically steer the school board away from a kind of Baskin and Robbins, race-centered approach where every little flavor gets its piece of the pie and—”

    Balter (laughing): “Ice cream pie, right?”

    Connelly: “An ice cream pie and a school board that works on behalf of all God’s children.”

    Scherr: “More metaphors than ever this morning. This was great.”

    Baskin-Robbins? “Every little flavor”? Is Whidbey Island resident Joel Connelly suggesting that Seattle Schools concentrate its money and attention on one “flavor”—say, vanilla?

    Budding Political Pundit

    posted by on November 5 at 11:45 AM

    She’s not even three and she can correctly identify past presidents—and the current occupant of the White House.

    Thanks to Slog tipper Chad.

    Where Would Our Pedestal Be?

    posted by on November 5 at 11:42 AM

    Richard Lacayo, Time’s critic and blogger, recounts a recent walk through London’s Trafalgar Square in which he admired the unusual public art venue of the Fourth Plinth—a pedestal made to support a statue in 1841. The other three plinths in the square were topped, but money ran out for this one, so it remained empty. Now it’s a site for changing contemporary works.

    Why can’t every American city have a spot such as this, just one little place “that was the focus of so much public attention and curiousity? It might even be worth all the political squabbling and artworld intrigue you would have to put up with to have it happen.”

    In Seattle, where would it be?

    On top of one of the arms that holds up 99? In that weird amphitheater of Greekish columns where Pike and Pine start to slope downtown? It has to be prominent. Do we have to resort to in front of the doors to Nordstrom?

    Calling All Brits and/or Contemporary Anglophiles

    posted by on November 5 at 11:17 AM


    Thanks to the international scope of the internet, I’ve come to learn that the UK version of Dancing with the Stars is entitled Strictly Come Dancing.

    My question: What the hell does that mean?

    Did they hope to name the show Strictly Ballroom but got legal threats from Baz Luhrman?

    Or did they want to name it “Come Dancing” and got legal threats from Ray Davies?

    Either way, the result is unfortunately bukkake-flavored.

    Fake Science, Fake Art, Fake Orgasm

    posted by on November 5 at 11:11 AM

    When Dear Science roped me into a podcast, I figured I’d sit around on my hands while he talked, occasionally becoming the butt of a joke for not knowing something incredibly scientifically basic, like whether mosquitoes only come in the female variety (no, but it’s only the female ones that drink blood, so those are the only ones you ever see).

    Instead, we got into it about fraud in art and science, starting by fully spoiling the movie My Kid Could Paint That, but moving into fake science reporting, fake stem-cell research progress, and the foolproof way to test whether a woman is having an orgasm (it involves sweaty feet).

    Check it out.

    Every Child Deserves a Mother and a Father…

    posted by on November 5 at 11:02 AM

    Even if only for a few moments

    Jehovah’s Witness mother dies after refusing blood transfusion after giving birth to twins

    A devout Jehovah’s Witness died just hours after giving birth to twins—as her strict faith barred her from receiving a life-saving blood transfusion.

    Despite desperate pleas from doctors, Emma Gough, 22, and her family, including her husband of nearly two years Anthony, 24, resolutely refused treatment. The young mother had time to cradle her newborn twins, a boy and a girl, before falling unconscious from heavy blood loss.

    Speaking yesterday, family friend Peter Welsh, 24, who was best man at the couple’s wedding, said: “Everyone is devastated by what has happened. Anthony is in pieces.

    “We can’t believe she died after childbirth in this day and age, with all the technology there is.”

    Yeah, blame the technology. And Anthony ought to be in pieces—literally. But Mitt Romney no doubt approves. Remember what he said last week about the importance of opposite-sex parents…

    Even where one member of the partnership may pass away, the memory and the characteristics of that gender, of that partner influence the development of a child.

    So look on the bright side: those motherless twins will always have their memories.

    Thanks to Slog tipper Matt.

    Long Time

    posted by on November 5 at 11:02 AM

    Ahh! Me so horny! love you long time!

    Today The Stranger Suggests

    posted by on November 5 at 11:00 AM

    Half-Great Movie

    ‘The Darjeeling Limited’

    Wes Anderson’s latest starts strong, peaks about halfway through, and then slowly crumbles into twee nonsense and painfully lazy metaphors (they literally shed their baggage!). Still, that first hour is one of the best I’ve seen all year, and now that Anderson’s accompanying short Hotel Chevalier has been attached (featuring, yes, Natalie Portman’s naked ass), it’s nearly perfect. If you leave after the funeral sequence, it is perfect. (See Movie Times, page 88, for details.) BRADLEY STEINBACHER

    Moments Like These

    posted by on November 5 at 10:54 AM

    … Are when I truly love—LOVE—the Internets and the blogs.

    PORT’s Arcy Douglass wrote the hell out of the Robert Irwin show in San Diego. I mean, thousands of words, dozens of scrolls, handfuls of images.

    Irwin’s work needs this kind of time, attention, and space. His complicated architectural installations and adventures in experience are not easily explored in review form.

    Don’t miss this one, and here’s my “review” of the 25-year-old classic book about Irwin by Lawrence Weschler.

    The Fall of the Dollar

    posted by on November 5 at 10:53 AM


    Exhibit A: Gisele Bundchen, the world’s richest supermodel, who is angling to retain her title by insisting on payment in virtually any currency except the U.S. dollar.

    Exhibit B: Jay-Z, the hiphop star and music industry mogul, whose new video finds the international trendsetter of pornographic bling waving around stacks of $500 Euros.

    Carry on.

    Slog Is Misbehaving

    posted by on November 5 at 10:48 AM

    You may have noticed that Slog is acting weirdly when you try to read comments—your browser departs from the main page and shows comments in two windows. It’s not just you, and we’re working to fix it right now. Thanks for your patience.

    UPDATE: This problem has been fixed, though you may need to clear your cache to make it work properly.

    The Culture of Cycling: Seattle vs. Portland

    posted by on November 5 at 10:38 AM

    As Dan noted briefly below, it’s a fucking war zone out there for cyclists, and usually the city isn’t on our side. “Getting in drivers’ way” (i.e., being on the same streets) is not illegal—that’s why they call it sharing the road—yet police and public sympathy are usually with drivers.

    Today’s P-I has a big story framing this debate as “tensions between bicyclists, motorists.” P-I reporter Brad Wong writes:

    An expected City Council vote Monday on a bicycle master plan would add millions of dollars in improvements, including 19 miles of cycling trails and a 230-mile system of marked routes for riders.

    “I think it will cut down on accidents,” said Councilwoman Jan Drago, the plan sponsor. “When we have more bike lanes and trails, it will help.”

    Look, I’m all for implementing the bike master plan, if the city will actually do it. (Planned bike lanes have already been replaced in some places by “sharrows,” markings that tell drivers bikes may be in the lane). But you know what? That’s not enough. Drivers who want cyclists off “their” roads attack and try to intimidate bikers who aren’t in their way—in fact, of numerous examples of attacks on cyclists cited in the P-I’s story Wong cites, only one involved a cyclist riding in the middle of the lane (which, as Dan pointed out, is perfectly legal.) The others, including cyclist Bryce Lewis (killed by a dump truck while riding in a bike lane) and Peter McKay (shot in the lung while riding along Delridge), were out of traffic and yet still in harm’s way.

    What Seattle really needs is more enforcement against drivers who try to intimidate cyclists. Most cyclists I know don’t even bother calling the police when they’re hit or intimidated by a driver—what’s the point? They won’t do anything anyway. Police have got to start taking motorist-on-cyclist threats and attacks as seriously as they would take one driver aggressively hitting another. All the bike lanes in the world won’t convince people to get out of their cars and onto their bikes as long as drivers can attack and intimidate cyclists with impunity.

    Meanwhile, in Portland, they’ve already taken steps to accommodate cyclists—and they’re getting ready to do more. From today’s New York Times:

    Drivers here are largely respectful of riders, and some businesses give up parking spaces to make way for bike racks.

    “Our intentions are to be as sustainable a city as possible,” Mr. Adams said. “That means socially, that means environmentally and that means economically. The bike is great on all three of those factors. You just can’t get a better transportation return on your investment than you get with promoting bicycling.”
    Mr. Adams said he was preparing a budget proposal that would spend $24 million to add 110 miles to the city’s existing 20-mile network of bike boulevards, which are meant to get cyclists away from streets busy with cars. Doing so could “double or triple ridership,” he said.

    What’s the difference between Seattle and Portland? Portland has nurtured a culture of cycling. Seattle, in contrast, has tried grudgingly to accommodate cyclists. There’s a big difference, and it shows.

    More on Clinton’s Gender Politics

    posted by on November 5 at 9:25 AM

    Good Monday morning. I’ve still been unsuccessful in my efforts to grow a vagina, but while I try to meet that very high bar for being allowed to comment on Hillary Clinton and gender, I’ve noticed that a lot people (with vaginas and without) were busy over the weekend dissecting Hillary Clinton’s use of gender in her campaign. And, shockingly, a lot of them said things similar to what I said in that post that caused the vagina challenge to be thrown down on Friday.

    Here’s Maureen Dowd on Clinton’s “Gift of Gall”, writing sarcastically:

    Girlfriend had a rough week.

    First Hillary got brushed back by the boys in the debate. Then some women bemoaned Hillaryland’s “Don’t hit me, I’m a girl” strategy…

    She should certainly be allowed to play the gender card two ways, or even triangulate it. As her campaign manager, Patti Solis Doyle, said after the debate, she is “one strong woman,” who has dwarfed male rivals and shown she’s tough enough to deal with terrorism and play on the world stage. But she can break, just like a little girl, when male chauvinists are rude enough to catch her red-handed being slippery and opportunistic.

    Here’s Ben Smith and David Paul Kuhn at The Politico, exploring the various reactions to the Clinton campaign’s use of gender:

    The debate is still churning in feminist circles, where some women’s activists said she had every right to invoke sexism and gender stereotypes as a defense on the campaign trail — and predicted that this tactic will prove effective against fellow Democrats and against a Republican, if she is the general election nominee.

    “It goes beyond logic — it’s a gut response,” Eleanor Smeal, president of the Feminist Majority Foundation, said of the spectacle of Clinton onstage confronting seven male rivals and two male moderators at a debate in Philadelphia on Wednesday night.

    Smeal, who has endorsed Clinton, compared the debate scene to the congressional grilling of Anita Hill when she challenged Clarence Thomas’ Supreme Court nomination in 1991.

    “Every woman — it was just so visceral — that panel was all male,” Smeal recalled. “It didn’t matter almost what was being said. It [was] a visceral gut reaction, and I think that’s what you’re seeing here again.”

    Here’s Adam Nagourney and Patrick Healy in this morning’s New York Times with a political memo that asks, “Different Rules When a Rival is a Woman?”:

    Mrs. Clinton’s opponents, and some prominent women, countered that Mrs. Clinton was resorting to using her sex as a shield against substantive criticism in a hard-fought race.

    “It’s outrageous to suggest that it’s sexist for the other candidates to ask her tough questions or criticize her,” said Kate Michelman, a women’s leader and a supporter of Mr. Edwards. “To call it sexist is to play the gender card. Any claim of sexism is just a distraction from the fact that she did not do well in the debate, that she did not answer important questions on Iraq and Iran.”

    And here’s the great Ruth Marcus column that kicked a lot of this off on Friday.

    Please. The Philadelphia debate was not exactly a mob moment to trigger the Violence Against Women Act; if anything, this has been an overly (pardon the phrase) gentlemanly campaign to date. Those other guys were beating up on Clinton, if you can call that beating up, because she is the strong front-runner, not because she is a weak woman.

    And a candidate as strong as Clinton doesn’t need to play the woman-as-victim card, not even in “the all-boys club of presidential politics,” as Clinton called it in a speech yesterday at her all-women alma mater, Wellesley College. I have a pretty good nose for sexism, and what I detected in the air from Philadelphia was not sexism but the desperation of candidates confronting a front-runner who happens to be a woman.

    Is It Illegal for a Cyclist to Ride in the Middle of the Street?

    posted by on November 5 at 8:55 AM

    It’s not. So why the fuck are the police accepting it as an excuse for attempting to run over a cyclist?

    And riders still are talking about a late-October near miss in Fremont, when a sport utility vehicle driver tried to hit or intimidate a bicyclist. The driver denies that accusation and told police the rider was in the middle of the street.

    Youth Pastor Watch

    posted by on November 5 at 8:30 AM

    If kids got raped at Denny’s as often as they do in churches, angry mobs would burn ‘em all down. From MSNBC:

    Police said a youth minister was arrested for allegedly having sex with more than one child. According to police, Marshal Seymour turned himself in Friday night after a warrant was issued for his arrest, WESH 2 News reported.

    The Lakeland Police Department said the warrant came after an investigation that Seymour committed numerous sexual offenses while he was a volunteer youth minister at the First Baptist Church at the Mall in Lakeland.

    Police said Seymour allegedly engaged in sexual activity with more than one minor and often paid the victims money for the sexual conduct or to keep quiet about the encounters that had occurred.

    Yeah, yeah: churches do more than facilitate the sexual abuse of children. They do good works. Denny’s serves delicious Grand Slam breakfasts—and magic chocolate chip waffles that cure hangovers. And Denny’s would still be out of business—burned to the ground by angry mobs, shuttered by the outraged authorities—if kids got raped by Denny’s cooks and waitresses as often as kids are raped by ministers, priests, and youth pastors.

    The Morning News

    posted by on November 5 at 7:54 AM

    Emergency Rule: Protesters and police continue to clash in Pakistan after General Musharraf suspended the Constitution and fired the Supreme Court. Musharraf’s actions have also led to a “trifecta of trouble” for the Bush administration.

    Pencils Down: After last-minute talks failed, Hollywood writers are officially on strike.

    Bacteria: More than a million pounds of meat is being recalled by agribusiness company Cargill due to E. coli concerns.

    School Daze: Oprah left stunned by abuse allegations at her school in South Africa.

    Fires: 29 inmates dead after a fire in an Argentina prison; 23 patients dead after a fire in a Russia nursing home.

    Mafioso: Italian police have arrested Cosa Nostra supremo Salvatore Lo Piccolo.

    Dept. of No Shit Sherlock: Violent TV is bad for preschool boys.

    Record-Breaking: 2007 is shaping up to be the bloodiest year of the Iraq War.

    Car Wars: Tensions are rising between Seattle’s cyclists and motorists. One West Seattle biker was even shot in the lung with a goddamn BB gun.

    Staph Meeting: A second case of staph infection has been confirmed at Port Townsend’s Grant Street Elementary School.

    On the Lam: After 12 years, an escaped convict has been found hiding in plain sight in Salem, Oregon.

    The Greatest, Most Important, Most Earth Shattering Game in NFL History: Won by the Patriots. Meanwhile, our own Seahawks horked it in Cleveland.

    Thank You Masked Man

    Sunday, November 4, 2007

    And Another Thing About Those GOP Donations

    posted by on November 4 at 5:33 PM

    If the $176,700 in that GOP fund (detailed here) wasn’t earmarked for Republican KC Prosecutor candidate Dan Satterberg, why didn’t any of the other GOP candidates—Bob Edwards for Port, Bill Bryant for Port, Jim Nobles for KC Assessor, and Jane Hague for KC Council—get any of last week’s $119,000 download?

    For example, with the exception of Hague (whose Party help is coming exclusively from the County Republicans), the State GOP originally gave all of those GOP candidates, along with Satterberg, comparable contributions from the Party—in the $750 to $5,000 range—earlier this month.

    However, after a wave of mid-October contributions to the GOP from Satterberg supporters, the Party made a massive contribution to Satterberg exclusively.

    Again: 78 percent of the money in the account, $139,500 out of $176,700, came from Satterberg supporters, most of whom had already maxed out to the candidate.

    Flickr Photo of the Day

    posted by on November 4 at 5:24 PM

    Holy moly. This photo made me instantly sad. Can’t somebody figure out a way to keep drive-in theaters alive? For just a little while longer? The drive-in is where I learned, at a very young age, how to appreciate James Bond, the Big and Little Dipper, and the fact, that hey, these kids I got thrown in the car with - these new step-siblings - they were actually pretty alright.


    This photo, from Stranger Flickr pool member mraaronmorris.

    Little Hoods

    posted by on November 4 at 3:17 PM

    Vandals destroyed our pumpkins-on-stakes display sometime late last night—and then posted the evidence of their crimes on YouTube. The authorities have been notified.

    More on Those Suspicious Satterberg Donations

    posted by on November 4 at 1:40 PM

    Cross reference this list of Dan Satterberg donors with this list of donors to the Washington State Republican Party.

    You’ll find that people who made big donations to Satterberg, the Republican candidate for KC Prosecutor, subsequently made large donations to a Washington State GOP account that has now downloaded about $125,000 to Satterberg.

    Of the 18 donations to this GOP account, 13 donations were made by big Satterberg supporters. Or put another way: 78 percent of the money in the account, $139,500 out of $176,700, came from Satterberg supporters.

    Was the GOP soliciting money from Satterberg donors, telling them the money would go directly to Satterberg—and then making good on that promise? That would be illegal: Parties cannot earmark donations for specific candidates. The GOP denies they earmarked the money.

    However, Bill Sherman, Satterberg’s Democratic opponent, is reportedly filing a complaint with the State tomorrow alleging that the money was, in fact, earmarked for Satterberg.

    It certainly looks like Satterberg donors and the GOP are circumventing contribution rules: As I posted yesterday, the special GOP account downloaded a last-minute payload directly to Satterberg—$81,015 on Friday night and $38,274 on Thursday. Additionally, on October 19, the State GOP contributed about $5,300.

    Here’s just some of the Satterberg donors you’ll find when you cross reference them with subsequent donations to the GOP account.

    Again: Nuprecon CEO John Hennessy donated $5,000 to the GOP on 10/16. Well, it turns out he also contributed $300 to Satterberg on 7/25.

    Richard Derham gave $1400 to Satterberg on 6/27. He donated $1,000 to the GOP fund on 10/11.

    Kevin Hughes gave $1400 to Satterberg on 7/30. He donated $2,000 to the State GOP fund on 10/30.

    Michael Malone donated $700 to Satterberg on 10/3. He donated $5,000 to the State GOP on 10/26.

    Bruce McCaw maxed out to Satterberg before he contributed a total of $25,0000 over two contributions to the State GOP on 10/11 and 10/15.

    Mike McGavick and his wife Gaelynn had each contributed $700 to Satterberg on 10/8. McGavick donated $5,000 to the State GOP on 10/11.

    George Rowley gave $1400 to Satterberg on 7/20. He gave $50,000 to the State GOP on 10/15.

    Jim Snyder gave $700 total on 9/17 and 10/03 to Satterberg. He contributed $5,000 to the party on the 10/12.

    Mikal Thomsen gave $1400 on 7/13 and 9/6. He contributed $5,000 to the State GOP on 10/12.

    P.s. I apologize if the links to the donor lists aren’t working. If they are not: You can go to the PDC website and search under “Detailed Contributions to Candidates and Political Committees.” You can easily generate both lists by searching WA ST REPUB PARTY NON-EXEMPT and then SATTERBERG DANIEL T.

    Sound Familiar?

    posted by on November 4 at 11:20 AM

    It’s hard not to wince a little at this line in this morning’s report on martial law in Pakistan:

    Musharraf’s order allows courts to function but suspends some fundamental rights guaranteed by the constitution, including freedom of speech. It also allows authorities to detain people without informing them of the charges.

    Send a check to the ACLU please.

    Today The Stranger Suggests

    posted by on November 4 at 11:00 AM


    Hiphop Live at Showbox

    The reason to go to this show? No, not for Ghostface Killah. No, not for Brother Ali. No, not for the live band, the Rhythm Roots Allstars. Yes, yes, yes for the father of modern rap, Rakim. He is, to put it in his words, the first rapper to “send a rhyme down the Nile.” His moment in the history of hiphop was one of radical rupture, a break that inaugurated a new direction. Really, has hiphop moved beyond “Follow the Leader,” a track Rakim made 20 years ago? (Showbox at the Market, 1426 First Ave, 8 pm, $32 adv/$35 DOS, all ages.) CHARLES MUDEDE


    The Hold Steady, Art Brut at HUB Ballroom

    Thanks to the dense, dazzling lyrics of Craig Finn, the Hold Steady remain music’s premier chroniclers of the adult urge for transcendence, be it through drugs or rock or God. Thanks to the brilliant shtick of Eddie Argos, Art Brut remain a band about a band making music about making music. Tonight these two wordy and theatrical bands take the stage at the UW, for what should be the smartest and funniest rock show of the year. (HUB Ballroom, UW campus, 7 pm, $22, all ages.) DAVID SCHMADER

  • More Stranger Suggests for this week »
  • Only Watch This if You Love LOLCats Like I Do

    posted by on November 4 at 9:18 AM

    The History of LOLCats:

    Happy Sunday. Don’t forget to turn back your clocks.

    (Thanks, Robby, for the video.)

    Morning News

    posted by on November 4 at 8:39 AM

    posted by news intern Brian Slodysko

    Spreading democracy throughout the world: Pakistan adds insult to White House foreign policy injury.

    I am not gay. I have not had sex with a guy: an “academic” peek into Richard Curtis’ risk taking behavior.

    Maybe this explains why Fred is so damn lazy: Thompson advisor’s history of drug dealing.

    Hang up the phone: the growing phenomenon of cellphone jamming.

    Weldon Marc Gilbert’s house of horrors: Pierce County man arrested for raping at least 20 boys.

    And because I’m not sure how to post video in a Slog entry, here’s a link to Barack Obama’s Saturday Night Live appearance last night.