November 22, 2007
What was Spokane thinking?
As if L'Affair de Curtis wasn't enough of a recent stain on Spokane, some civic leaders, joined with WSU, have blessed themselves with a self-inflicted wound: willfully turning down the chance to host the sole VP debate in 2008.
Don't like being considered a second-rate city? Don't make second-rate decisions.
UPDATE: 1st sentence fixed.
Posted by Eric Earling at November 22, 2007
12:56 PM | Email This
1. What do you expect from liberals who's stinking arrogance is so typically unearned? God, these people make me sick.
2. This is truly unbelievable. WSU is making themselves look really good in this one.
3. You mean you're surprised they "Couged it?"
4. *gag* *gag* *choke* *gurgle*
5. Hmmm, they'll host figure skating national championships but not this. Hmmmm. Spokane should have gone for it.
6. This is soooooo Spokane! After hounding West out of office as mayor, look at the people they've chosen to replace him. About the only thing these people have in common is Seattle envy.
Spokane isn't responsible for the behavior of Curtis. Curtis is responsible for his own behavior. I don't see how Curtis's behavior "stains" Spokane.
VP debates are inconsequential events that nobody watches. A city that accepts a proposal to host one, ipso facto, admits that its city is second-rate.
Spokane should hold out for a presidential debate.
Maybe they were just sparing the rest of the Washingtonians the potential embarrassment of having Seattleites or them Olympian protestors infiltrate the audience and make their school look even worse.
It's our old Husky joke, how do you get to WSU: Go East until you smell it, then South until you step in it - just maybe they didn't think they could get rid of their stench in time.
9. I had to laugh when one Spokane official said that Spokane is better of saving themselves for a future Pres. debate. Do the math bright guy! Three debates every four years, in a country with hundreds of Colleges.
10. As one who grew up in Spokane, trust me it is a second rate city.
The story presented in the Spokane media is that the proposed Presidential candidate debate was to be hosted at the small WSU Spokane campus - and all of the substantial costs to pay for this would need to be raised from local donations.
Research found that the presidential debate opportunity was justifiable.
When they were offered the vice-presidential debate instead, they were put in a position of saying "yes or no" now, without the opportunity to determine if this made economic sense for the community (which would have to raise all the money to put this on).
The economic demographics of Eastern Washington are vastly different than those in the Seattle area; it is not a simple "given" that the money needed to hold the debate could be raised. Most Americans ignore the vp debates. Considering that only half of eligible voters even vote, this is not surprising. Indeed, the majority of Americans are fed up with politicians and political parties (Congress has an 11 percent approval rating, for example).
In 1960, 37 percent of the US population watched the debates - but this has dropped every election and is now down to about 14 percent who watched the first VP debate in the last election. Subsequent debates fell off to about 11%. A reasonable guess is this could drop to single digits watching next year. Since the focus is on the candidates and the media, the benefit to the host city is not obvious. (And yes, viewership of the national figure skating championship has also dropped significantly, but the 2007 event held in Spokane lasted a week, with many hours of TV coverage every day, and the host city's name is visible during nearly all the coverage on the ice.)
Sound Politics routinely blasts government for spending money without consideration of the facts. Is taking a measured approach to spending based on research and facts the wrong approach?
The ad hom attacks on those who want to make decisions based on facts comes across as arrogant and snotty.
Let's see...they knew that the last VP debate had over 40 million viewers which is about 20 percent less than they would have expected for a POTUS debate, but still more than American Idol expects to get in season opening debuts. They also knew that some other 2nd tier cities have already done research that showed the positive impact on a VP debate would be greater than $20, $30, even $40 million.
So you are forced to make a spur of a moment decision that you know you will have most of a year to prepare for and you already supposedly have studied the impact of a POTUS debate.... Noooo, they couged it.
13. The hilarious part is the fact that WSU couldn't dare to have the debate on it's true home turf: Pullman....after all who would want to go there?
14. Maybe Spokane is saving itself for an American Idol audition. Maybe it wants to be a virgin for Simon.
West was hardly hounded out of office--when you look at porn on your city-issued laptop and cruise the message boards for highschoolers, you've proven yourself unfit.
This is sort of a sensitive issue here, I think, because there was a major blowup in 2004 over what it cost the city and county when Dick Cheney came to town for a fundraiser. If Wazzu ran the numbers and found it didn't make sense, then I applaud them for their responsibility.
16. My alumni dollars want to know just who the hell is Mr Tate and just how does the VP for "equity and diversity" get to make a decision of such significance? Where was the President of the University on this?
Further, why does he speak for Mayor Hessions? Let ignore the apparent disconnect between Tate and Sladich...after all, how long have these guys had to study the opportunity? Its a no-brainer. And a million in private dollars...? I want to see that cost analysis.
Clearly when the media report something like this, the old saying about the first story is always wrong remains true. I doubt we know all the details here. My nose tells me if we did, they would smell worse than yesterday's leftover gravey.
The arguments made by "Eric" at #11 are painful if they really constitute anything close to the actual thinking involved by those who declined the opportunity in question.
Civic leadership should be what the art of the possible, not the art of "let's take a pass on this because we're just not sure this really cool, rare opportunity for our town is going to work...it MIGHT even have problems."
Eric's argument is based on an entire series of presumptive, pessimistic, non sequiturs that are no defense for the decision in question; as Doug ably pointed out at #12.
18. Could someone explain why this announcement was made by a "Vice President for Diversity and Equity" at WSU? Could someone then explain why there even is such a thing at WSU?
The onething WSU does screwy. Most folks would know this as the HR department.
WSU got a white guilt trip a while back, and renamed it to a more liberal sounding department.
Former spouse #1 used to work there, as exec asst, and believe me, it is in name only, and only meant to confuse and act as opiate for the wetsiders.
It....is.....personnel....with.....a ....50¢ name.
20. If you were actually expressing this in French, Eric, it would be "L'Affaire Curtis," not "L'Affair de Curtis." And I agree with Luigi (#7). It's hard to see how that legislator's bad behavior is a stain on Spokane. On the legislature, maybe, but not on Spokane.