On The Wretchedness Of A World In Which Susan Hutchison Can Pose A Serious Challenge To Dow Constantine In The Race For King County Executive

That would be the same King County wherein resides a populace that is among the most highly educated, forward-thinking, and environmentally aware in the entire country.   Allegedly.

King County:  birthplace of Microsoft and Amazon; one of the nation’s first municipalities to regulate the greenhouse gas emissions associated with development; former stomping grounds of Ron Sims; operator of one the largest and most well-used transit systems in the U.S.

But given the what the polls are saying, apparently even the allegedly progressive populace of King County is rife with voters who (1) are willing to decide based on completely superficial name/hair recognition, or (2) are so alienated from their own culture (i.e. the government) that they’ll get on board with any warm body that is perceived to be anti-establishment.

It’s simple, argue the category (2) types:   King County is having budget problems so death to the incumbents.  Never mind that a major cause of the County’s budget shortfall is the inability of these very same people to accept that government provides important services that cost money, money that comes from taxes—a subconscious version of starving the beast.

Parallel in many ways to the races for Seattle Mayor and City Council Position 8, the King County Executive race presents such a glaringly distinct choice—between boldly moving forward and fearfully treading water, between substance and image, between being in-, and being out-of-touch with the mainstream values of the region—that contemplating the fact that Hutchison could actually win is, for me, nearly as staggeringly depressing as was the re-election of W.

That’s right people, a veteran local TV news anchor-model.  You might think that Hutchison’s highly lucrative, two decades long career delivering the toxic psychological sludge of fear and vacuousness that is the local TV news would be enough to make her a non-viable political candidate; that being an integral part of a medium that is a leading cause of civic disengagement would alone be grounds for disqualification in the eyes of the electorate.   But you would be wrong.

Hutchison has famously said that light rail to the airport wasn’t such a great idea because you can get there faster in a cab.  In contrast, Constantine is a tireless transit advocate with a Masters Degree in Urban Planning who understands the importance of creating compact communities and reducing car-dependence, and overall, recognizes the key role cities must play in creating a sustainable future.

Here’s how critical I believe it is that Dow Constantine becomes the next King County Executive: I support him even though he is backing the deep-bore tunnel (gasp!).  At a recent event Constantine cited concerns that reopening the debate could lead to far worse options resurfacing.  Fair enough, though conveniently skirted is the core question of whether or not the tunnel is the right thing to do in the long-term, big picture.

So then, if you’ve got an urge to help quell the wretchedness by supporting Dow Constantine, the campaign needs your money more than anything, but you might also consider spending an upcoming evening hanging out with the Transit & Land Use Advocates Calling for Dow:

We know that we can count on Dow. Can we count on you?  Please join us for a night to contact undecided voters throughout the County on behalf of Dow Constantine. As always, pizza and beverages will be on hand. Please email aprilputney@gmail.com to let us know if you’re able to make it so that we have enough food and phone lines available.

Tuesday, October 20th, 5:30pm-8:30pm
SIEU’s office, 1914 34th St N, Seattle (Wallingford)

Can’t make the 20th? No problem, contact Dow’s campaign directly to find another time to volunteer: jared@dowconstantine.com.

20 Responses to “On The Wretchedness Of A World In Which Susan Hutchison Can Pose A Serious Challenge To Dow Constantine In The Race For King County Executive”

  1. Artemis

    You’re right about the stark differences between Dow and Hutchison, and you’re right that there are also big differences between some of city candidates, but it’s not fair or helpful to pretend that Hutchison is in any way comparable to Rosencrantz or Mallahan. You might not like the more moderate city candidates, but they are vastly more progressive and better on the issues than Hutchison.

  2. Bill B

    “they’ll get on board with any warm body that is perceived to be anti-establishment”

    Sounds like HCA and The Stranger readers and their McGinn love-fest…

    The operative word here is ‘perceived’. Sadly, its McGinn (and HCA) who are the entrenched development community (the ‘establishment’) that are selling the snake oil called “We Can Build Our Way Out Of This Mess”, and the deluded and desperate masses are eating it up.

  3. City Comforts

    Of course I’d rather see Dow in office but I think that it is so important to stop the tunnel that I might well abstain. (I can’t see voting for Susan if for no other reason than I don’t think reading news should be a stepping-stone to important office.)

    I’d be for Dow if at least he took a nuanced view such as “I’m for the tunnel but only if we get a clear sense (vote) from the citizens that they will pay for it and for the inevitable cost-overruns.”

    But a simple and unqualified “I am for the tunnel” means I can’t vote for him, much as I would like to.

  4. Artemis

    City Comforts, your vote in the KC Exec race will have no impact on whether or not the tunnel gets built since both candidates favor it. You may as well vote for Dow based on the other issues. In the city races, where many candidates have different positions on the tunnel, you can vote based on the tunnel.

  5. Becky Stanley

    City Comforts,
    I am also very much against the tunnel but in all of King County there are so many other important issues that I feel passionately about that I have to support and vote for Dow Constantine.

    I can say from personal experience (using my actual real name) that Dow Constantine has been a HUGE protector of clean water. Without Dow we would not have successfully passed a strong Critical Areas Ordinance for wetland, stream, lake etc. protection in King County. That’s just one example, I have others.

    Not voting is like voting for Ralph Nadar in 2004. We cannot afford the damage that Susan Hutchison will cause to our county.

  6. Sivalinga

    NOT VOTING IS LIKE VOTING. Doubleplus good!

    Now I just have to wrap my head around ‘NOBEL PEACE PRIZE’…

    Tough week for Jet City proles, I guess.

    (Sent from my iPhone)

  7. Eli

    Just donated $100 to his campaign on top of the donation I’m making to McGinn (in honor of a miserable walk through Seattle yesterday with third-rate pedestrian infrastructure, disappearing sidewalks, a four-lane high-speed road with no crosswalk, and having to navigate around a freeway — and we call this “walkable”??!)

  8. Weekend News Roundup - Seattle Transit Blog

    [...] (who was there, and provided the space) writes up our STB/NorthwestHub [...]

  9. Oy | hugeasscity

    [...] I forget that I had just taken a hit off the crack pipe, or did I actually hear Susan Hutchinson say that Metro’s $100 million plus projected annual budget shortfall should be addressed by [...]

  10. holz

    um, microsoft did not get ‘birthed’ in seattle (it was founded in ‘burque)

  11. Say No to Insanity

    I totally agree with this article. Susan Hutchison is full on crazy. Listen to her campaign ads closely and you can hear an edge of simmering anger she can barely contain. The fact that she was fired from her position as anchor with KIRO in 2002 should tell us something. Any one of us would be immediately disqualified from most jobs if a prospective employer found out we were previously fired but people are actually considering hiring her for this important position that effects the operations of the entire Washington State. Face it, what goes on in King County effects the entire state. Hutchison has the potential to dismantle our whole transit system and undo everything we’ve aimed for over the last 20 years in promoting mass transit. With her plan we’d all be stuck in our cars in gridlock all day long sucking exhaust from the tailpipe of the care in front of us. That’s not even mentioning her far out views on social issues. Dow Constantine is the man for the job.

  12. Say No to Insanity

    I’m also strongly against the tunnel option. I was an advocate of rebuilding the viaduct. Preserving the land value of a few rich land owners seems ridiculous. However, people have to stop shooting things down just because they’re not exactly what they want. What we need is better infrastructure, better transportation, and more capacity to move commuters from point A to point B. We need to start judging plans based on efficiency and not on every little thing we disagree with. Sometimes getting something done is better than arguing for ten years fighting something because it’s not exactly what we want. That’s why I’m willing to compromise on the tunnel to make sure Hutchinson doesn’t get elected. Dow can have a little leeway for saving our asses from total ruin if Hutchinson were to get the position.

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