Index of entries from February 2011
February 28, 2011
I blame the Tea Party for this
by Stefan Sharkansky, 08:52 PM, 23 Comments
"Rioters target Seattle police, local businesses late Saturday"A group of 25 to 30 people, most dressed in black and wearing bandannas or masks, wreaked mayhem Saturday night in Seattle on Capitol Hill and the Denny Triangle, painting anti-police slogans, throwing... [read more]

Because the cost *is* the benefit
by Stefan Sharkansky, 07:41 PM, 6 Comments
The Seattle City Council voted 8-1 to override Mayor Mike McGinn's veto, and proceed with the Alaskan Way tunnel. Financing for the multi-billion dollar tunnel isn't fully fleshed out (even before inevitable cost overruns). But so what? The taxpayers are... [read more]

Danny Westneat Names Names
by Jim Miller, 01:33 PM, 3 Comments
In his latest column, Westneat does something he has not always done in earlier columns; he blames specific government officials, by name. This is, I must say, a great improvement on his earlier series of columns on the South Park... [read more]

February 27, 2011
News story points out absurdity of anti-initiative bill SB 5297: it exempts labor unions (BUT THE ONLY BAD SIGNATURES IN 12 YEARS CAME FROM SEIU)
by Tim Eyman, 07:04 PM, 6 Comments
With a party-line vote on Friday for Senate Bill 5297 in the Senate Ways & Means committee, this anti-initiative bill is starting to receive greater scrutiny: Interest Groups Say Union Fraud Case Justifies a Crackdown on Initiatives, and Guess What?... [read more]

Is The Big Seattle Tunnel Worth What It Will Cost?
by Jim Miller, 04:14 PM, 10 Comments
First, some background for those not familiar with traffic problems in the Seattle area.  Ten years ago, the Alaskan Way Viaduct was damaged by the Nisqually earthquake. Ever since then, the city and state have been arguing about how and... [read more]

"School administration's culture creates these scandals"
by Stefan Sharkansky, 03:06 PM, 40 Comments
Danny Westneat today discovers the inevitable consequences of collective bargaining for school employees:The [latest] Seattle Schools scandal is a perfect storm of district neuroses. It was born of political correctness. Nurtured by lax management. Prolonged by timidity about race. It... [read more]

"Democracy" For America
by pudge, 12:40 AM, 20 Comments
Am I the only one who sees the irony in Democracy For America rallying in favor of "workers' rights" to collective bargaining? A right of public employees to collective bargaining is a right to force government to negotiate in a... [read more]

DOMA's Constitutionality
by pudge, 12:33 AM, 28 Comments
President Obama says that the Defense of Marriage Act is not constitutional. The reason why is essentially that because gays have been discriminated against, we can't discriminate against them, because -- the logic goes -- we can only discriminate against... [read more]

February 26, 2011
Documents detail financial abuse in Seattle schools "Minority Contractor" program
by Stefan Sharkansky, 05:45 PM, 6 Comments
Seattle Times::a district employee told auditors the district didn't receive much benefit from consulting, training and outreach work by [Former state Democratic Party Chairman Charles] Rolland, Tony Orange and Eddie Rye Jr., longtime leaders in Seattle's African-American community. All... [read more]

February 25, 2011
Global Warming Update (LVII)
by Stefan Sharkansky, 10:24 PM, 29 Comments
My dog chewed off the hose-bib protector so I hope my pipes didn't freeze:Seattle recorded an all-time low temperature for this date Friday when the temperatures dipped to 21 degrees at 4 a.m., breaking the record of 22 degrees set... [read more]

Karma
by Stefan Sharkansky, 10:15 PM, 10 Comments
Karmais not fate, for humans act with free will creating their own destiny. According to the Vedas, if one sows goodness, one will reap goodness; if one sows evil, one will reap evil. Karma refers to the totality of our... [read more]

February 23, 2011
Mayor McGinn Makes No Sense
by Andy MacDonald, 08:22 PM, 39 Comments
Yesterday Mayor Michael McGinn gave his annual State of the City address. As the mayor is a rabid fan of trains, high-speed and light rail get a dozen mentions. One justification for putting light rail on the 520 bridge rebuild... [read more]

Seattle Public Schools spending targeted in criminal probe
by Stefan Sharkansky, 02:13 PM, 18 Comments
Seattle Times:Seattle Public Schools spent up to $1.8 million on contract work that was never done or didn't benefit the district, triggering a secret criminal investigation into allegations of financial fraud. ... The irregularities center on a school-district program that... [read more]

Axis of Plunderers
by Stefan Sharkansky, 11:52 AM, 23 Comments
Reports Jerry Cornfeld in the HeraldThose Wisconsin Democratic senators who fled the political storm in their state are welcome in Washington if they need a place to hide out. "We will protect them, we will safeguard them...and we will support... [read more]

February 22, 2011
The Coup In Olympia
by Jim Miller, 06:07 AM, 9 Comments
The coup in Olympia?  Yes, I have it on good authority that there was a coup in Olympia. At this point you are probably already protesting that if there had been a coup in Washington's capital, you would have heard... [read more]

February 18, 2011
Larry Phillips wants to tax you more
by Andy MacDonald, 09:20 PM, 35 Comments
King County Councilman Larry Phillips is going to Olympia to ask for more tax money to support Metro: I want you to know that on Monday, February 21st, I will be testifying to the Washington State Senate Transportation Committee in... [read more]

On Wisconsin
by Stefan Sharkansky, 06:57 PM, 127 Comments
This born and bred Cheesehead is especially proud of his home state these days. And not only because the Packers won the Super Bowl and the Badgers nearly won the Rose Bowl. There's House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan. And... [read more]

February 17, 2011
Property Values Down, Taxes Going Up, Huh?
by warrenpeterson, 10:33 PM, 26 Comments
We the voters support Tim Eyman's tax controlling initiatives but at the same time vote for special levies on property to support libraries, parks and schools plus a host of other items from Emergency Medical Response to fire and sewer... [read more]

Luke Esser Lobbying for SEIU
by pudge, 07:00 AM, 61 Comments
Former Washington State Republican Party Chair Luke Esser, who lost reelection to Kirby Wilbur last month, is now lobbying Olympia for the SEIU, one of the biggest supporters of Democrats and liberal causes in Olympia. For example, the SEIU, at... [read more]

February 16, 2011
The greatest tragedy would be Olympia increasing initiative filing fees (House Bill 1668 / Senate Bill 5297) -- here's why
by Tim Eyman, 04:49 PM, 11 Comments
House Bill 1668 and Senate Bill 5297 are a monstrosity of anti-initiative policies. Instead of separate anti-initiative bills where each anti-initiative policy can be critiqued and highlighted, this year the Democrats went with the omnibus approach, putting all their anti-initiative... [read more]

Apples, Democrats, And The Ecological Fallacy
by Jim Miller, 02:48 PM, 14 Comments
Some of the comments after this post reminded me that I should review the ecological fallacy, again.  It's surprising how often I see this methodological error — and how widely.  I've seen it in a column by Michelle Malkin and,... [read more]

February 15, 2011
Republican Presidential Possibilities - 20 So Far
by warrenpeterson, 10:16 PM, 88 Comments
The Republican flock is forming up. Twenty presidential potentials are sitting on the roost. Which ones can really fly all the way to the White House? In order by home state: Former Gov. Sarah Palin of Alaska Too toxic to... [read more]

February 14, 2011
Mt. St. Helens, Last Week
by Jim Miller, 02:22 PM, 18 Comments
Last Wednesday, I suggested that you take a look at Mt. St. Helens from time to time.  I took my own advice, and saved some of the views.  Here's my favorite. (Click on the picture to see the larger version.)... [read more]

Unions' internal memos expose harassment strategy - anti-initiative bills would make harassment easier
by Tim Eyman, 10:55 AM, 41 Comments
"Keep an eye out. The best way to beat this is at the signature gathering stage. Please let us know if you see those paid signature hunters in your area and let them know in no uncertain terms what their... [read more]

Four Lefties Versus Todd Myers
by Jim Miller, 09:41 AM, 67 Comments
Yesterday, I caught the last part of KCTS Connects, and was amused to see Todd Myers facing four lefties, Cathy Allen, Joni Balter, Enrique Cerna, and Joel Connelly.  Amused, because that's the traditional line-up on this kind of program, 4-1.... [read more]

February 12, 2011
Republican, Conservative and Black
by warrenpeterson, 06:31 PM, 55 Comments
Below are links to videos of speeches given by two African American leaders at the 2011 CPAC - the Conservative Political Action Conference. The first is by Herman Cain, former CEO of Godfathers Pizza and now a writer and talk... [read more]

February 10, 2011
DEMOCRATS' BILLS WOULD SHUT DOWN INITIATIVE PROCESS (HOUSE BILL 1668 AND SENATE BILL 5297)
by Tim Eyman, 04:54 PM, 23 Comments
There were hearings this week on 2 anti-initiative bills (exclusively sponsored by Democrats) House Bill 1668 and Senate Bill 5297. Here's today's testimony against them: An October poll asked voters 'do you think the initiative process is a good thing... [read more]

Raise the tax on cars to subsidize money-losing, rider-losing bus service?
by Stefan Sharkansky, 11:31 AM, 49 Comments
King County Executive Dow Constantine is complaining that King County Metro bus system is "getting very skinny" and badly needs a new revenue source. Constantine asserts that the county's bus system still faces a $200 million shortfall in the next... [read more]

February 09, 2011
Doubling down on failure
by Stefan Sharkansky, 01:14 PM, 25 Comments
Mayor Mike McGinn wants to double the "Families and Education Levy". This levy, first approved by voters in 1990, was renewed in 1997 and 2004, spending roughly $250 million "to help all Seattle's children become school ready, succeed academically, and... [read more]

February 08, 2011
King County Executive Dow Constantine concurrently hires his campaign consultant for both personal campaign and county project
by Stefan Sharkansky, 03:13 PM, 19 Comments
This smells fishy. Public records [pdf] show that the King County Executive's Office contracted last October with Democratic campaign consultant Christian Sinderman for a $100,000 14-month project to develop a "pro-active strategic communications plan", "legislative agenda at county, state and... [read more]

Behind-the-Scenes Look at First Month of 112th Congress
by Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers, 08:59 AM, 86 Comments
Below is the first installment of our new series "Candid with Cathy." The video features exclusive pictures and video clips of events on Capitol Hill, like greeting Rep. Jaime Herrera Beutler (WA-03) on her first day in office, reading part... [read more]

February 07, 2011
Speaking of Super Bowl ads...
by Stefan Sharkansky, 11:56 AM, 11 Comments
Ryan Blethen's column in Friday's Seattle Times: "Bills threaten people's ability to remain informed of government actions". Another attempt to eviscerate the Public Records Act? No:All county officers shall cause all legal or official notices and delinquent tax lists to... [read more]

Say WA?
by Stefan Sharkansky, 11:14 AM, 12 Comments
[UPDATED 4:45 PM with a clarification from the Mayor's Office, see below] What the heck does he mean?During the meeting [about charter schools] he organized at City Hall, [Seattle Mayor Mike] McGinn also suggested that charters might be a way... [read more]

Super Bowl Ads
by Jim Miller, 08:26 AM, 33 Comments
You couldn't avoid them, even if you didn't watch the game.  So now have your say. Some quick thoughts to get things started:  The Passat ad showed a husband and father in a good light.  That was a pleasant surprise... [read more]

February 05, 2011
Bipartisanship in Olympia!!
by Ron Hebron, 08:23 AM, 18 Comments
There was a tectonic shift in Olympia yesterday. The Senate Democrats allowed the Republicans to take part in crafting state policy. Elections do have consequences. Their margin is smaller and the problems are, not larger, but now recognized as huge.... [read more]

February 04, 2011
Democrats in Legislature try yet again to hobble citizen initiatives
by Stefan Sharkansky, 08:37 PM, 25 Comments
Left-wing Democrats in the state House and Senate have filed bills designed to hamper and obstruct citizen initiatives (HB 1668 and companion SB 5297). The bills would raise the filing fee from $5 to $500 (partially refundable upon qualification) and... [read more]

Has Scott White succeeded Eric Oemig as the state's most unserious legislator?
by Stefan Sharkansky, 12:09 PM, 14 Comments
Most reasonable observers of the state Legislature are undoubtedly relieved that oddball Sen. Eric Oemig (D-Kirkland) was ousted last November by the moderate Republican Andy Hill. Although not without amusement value, Oemig was best known for distracting the responsible grown-ups... [read more]

Cynthia Stroum Was Not A Success As Ambassador To Luxembourg
by Jim Miller, 06:49 AM, 11 Comments
And I think it is fair to say that Luxembourg is not an especially challenging assignment for an American ambassador.  If you can fail there, you can fail anywhere.The Associated Press gives us a few of the details from an... [read more]

February 03, 2011
Patty Murray, fighting for jobs and small business
by Stefan Sharkansky, 09:57 PM, 15 Comments
U.S. Senate Republicans lost yesterday's party line vote to repeal Obamacare. But all is not lost. Now that the Democrats have passed the bill so they could find out what's in it, they found out they didn't like everything they... [read more]

More eliminationist hate rhetoric in liberal Seattle
by Stefan Sharkansky, 03:47 PM, 98 Comments
Spotted on a car parked at the UW. It also had an Obama 2008 sticker. This is literally eliminationist, with the subtext that Republicans don't deserve to reproduce. The hatred and prejudice of its implication equating Republicans with opposition to... [read more]

February 02, 2011
Global Warming Update (LVI)
by Stefan Sharkansky, 09:45 PM, 53 Comments
Record Snowfall across North America Record cold has South Korea telling citizens: wear long johns And a NOAA satellite image map of the snow-covered Northern Hemisphere: (by way of the UK's Daily Mail) Yeah, yeah, I know. Weather isn't climate,... [read more]

Because Seattle Liberals Are More Tolerant And Civil Than The Rest Of Us
by Stefan Sharkansky, 02:45 PM, 91 Comments
I was out eating lunch in Seattle's Wallingford neighborhood (88% for Obama/Biden in 2008). I overheard a middle-aged man and woman laughing with approval about Sarah Palin toilet paper. "I'd use that!", he smiled. "Then again, I wouldn't. Some things... [read more]

State Ferry workers defend triple overtime and pay to drive to work
by Ron Hebron, 08:39 AM, 19 Comments
Monday in OlympiaFerry union representatives defended overpaying workers with triple overtime and pay to drive to work in Legislative hearings. HB 1511 and SB 5405  would end practices that allow ferry workers pay that makes no sense; both had hearings. Source:... [read more]

Severability
by pudge, 08:14 AM, 26 Comments
A word on severability clauses: in general, the little-c conservative, humble, judicially restrained thing for a court to do is to throw out an entire law when ONE part of that law is thrown out. That may seem backward to... [read more]

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