Regarding The Upcoming Election: One Acronym And A Punctuation Mark: WTF?

In this, the year 2009, can it really be true that so many of the choices on the upcoming Fall ballot are still questions that are the subject of contentious debate; on which our citizenry must vote; that represent such a clear distinction between backward and forward, yet that could go either way?

Let us review the choices one might naively assume would be staggeringly obvious to the majority of human beings with a pulse:

R-71: Is there a sane person among us who believes that in a few decades when people look back on this era they won’t be wondering what the hell was wrong with us that it was such a struggle to legally recognize same-sex marriage?  A shame that the brain disease that causes so many to be somehow threatened by love between two people doesn’t also cause permanent laryngitis.

I-1033: What will it take for us to finally and permanently put a fork in Ronald Reagan’s  “government is the problem” mantra of idiocy?  How many past examples do we need of how tax limits like I-1033 fuck over important government institutions like public schools?  When will enough people open their eyes to the fact that in those other developed nations where tax rates are higher than ours, the people actually live quite well?

Seattle Housing Levy: Most people have no choice but to be aware of the cost of housing, and here in Seattle, it is pretty much universally recognized that we have a problematic, growing lack of affordable housing.  And as history has repeatedly shown in cities all over the world, there is very little that can be done about it aside from government subsidy.  So then, how is it that the modest levy on the current ballot isn’t a slam dunk at the polls?  And for that matter,  shouldn’t significant funding for affordable housing be a permanent part of the City budget that doesn’t depend on begging the voters every few years?

King County Executive: A closet Republican ex-local TV news anchor model with zero civic experience and no ideas is polling ahead of a progressive, experienced politician with a proven record of forwarding the cause sustainable urbanism.  Totally “move to Canada” material.

Seattle Mayor: The volunteer-driven, well-informed, neighborhood activist, environmentalist, and urbanist versus the corporate exec who never bothered much with civic affairs before he paid his way into this election, and has demonstrated limited understanding of the issues and no notable vision.  Based on the popular perception of Seattle as uber-liberal and hyper-green, one might expect no contest.  But the perception is not the reality.

Seattle City Council Position #8: One guy understands the environmental and social benefits of density, recognizes the urgency of addressing climate change, believes car drivers should pay the true costs of their actions, and has a record of strong support for transit, as was recently demonstrated in his work to get last year’s Proposition 1 on the ballot and passed.  The other guy, not so much on any of these issues, and also is opposed by Planned Parenthood and NARAL.   Ditto the previous paragraph on the perception vs. reality of the Seattle populace.

All six of the above could go either way come election day.

So are you ready to say it with me now?  Go ahead, howl it:  ….W! …T! …F!!!!!!!

14 Responses to “Regarding The Upcoming Election: One Acronym And A Punctuation Mark: WTF?”

  1. Cascadian

    WTF indeed. The biggest WTF is definitely Hutchison. People voting for anti-tax initiatives is nothing new. Bigotry against gay people is the (thankfully eroding) status quo. Big money winning out over good ideas is pretty much the definition of politics.

    But an empty-suit far-right Republican with no political experience winning as King County Executive? That’s unprecedented. I just can’t believe it but I look at the polls and there it is.

  2. Matt the Engineer

    It’s not unprecedented. Look at Schwarzenegger or Regan. Either we live in a country where acting skills are deemed more important in a politician than civic education and experience, or on average we’re we can’t overcome the desire to vote for familiarity whatever the cost.

  3. Joe G

    This is my thought exactly. WTF! W! T! F! I mean, what is going on here. I have to wonder if what is being polled is being skewed by the coprorate media machines or if I am suddenly in a red state. What is going on here? Am I the only that sees another rich guy buying his way into public office? How embarrassing for our city especially if that happens here. I just saw a list this week of the greenest cities in America and we were number 8, Portland was number 1 and SF was number 2. This election will really put Seattle on the spot. Seattle can move one of two ways: further towards our creed of environmental protection and social justice or just another city trying to make it big time. Personally, I would rather live in the Seattle that believes in what it preaches. When the city moves away from those goals it becomes like any other city and that would be the worst thing for this city, especially in times like these.

    I’m holding on to hope.

  4. Dean Ruffner

    I don’t want to disturb the echo chamber here, but the “I’m going to move to Canada if I don’t get my way” bit is quite childish and really played out.

  5. Joe G

    Hail Canada!

  6. Wells

    For too long it’s been obvious to me that Seattle is run by powerful conservative business interests who wear an opaque patina of environmentalism green to blend in with their burning black love of the color of money, money grudgingly spent on green PR campaigns and tokens. Like fundamentalists they cherry pick economic theorem to justify their fanatic heirarchy of power over the rest of humanity reduced to another resource to exploit.

    It’s time for a clean sweep at City Hall.

  7. slag

    “# Dean Ruffner October 22nd, 2009 at 3:40 pm

    I don’t want to disturb the echo chamber here, but the “I’m going to move to Canada if I don’t get my way” bit is quite childish and really played out.”

    Yes. Because all of these comments have been about moving to Canada. So glad you disturbed the echo chamber for that.

  8. John of Humdinger

    If only Planned Parenthood ran the world
    What A Wonderful World It Would Be
    (if you happened to be lucky enough to make it into the world.)

  9. BB

    Since you are all at such a loss at some of these polls…I will try to explain a few from another progressive viewpoint…

    It very important to many people that the person who is elected mayor actually has experience managing an organization…McGinn has no management experience. I know so many people who will not vote for him because they do not believe he is capable of running the City..period.
    Seattle Housing Levy…you can be a low income housing supporter and object to the the funding source….property taxes. We need an income tax in this state to address many issues including schools and affordable housing…we do not need increased property taxes which is particularly hard on retired people on fixed incomes.

    BB

    Dow Constantine…WTF?

  10. Zelbinian

    @BB: You, sir/madam, make me go WTF, and are precisely what Dan is talking about.

    “McGinn has no management experience”

    Why do I constantly feel like I’m back in the 2008 presidential election? “Experience” is a slippery word we use in place of what it is we actually care about: competence. Proof of the former is not proof of the latter, as we saw with John McCain and Barack Obama.

    And, for the record, it doesn’t matter how many times you people say that he doesn’t have management experience, that just don’t make it so. Not that you’ll listen, but I’ll go through the list again: He managed the Cascade Sierra Club, 2.5 successful initiative campaigns (he only had a small hand in the 2008 light rail measure, but a hand he had), a non-profit called Great City (that actually got results), and now he is running a campaign that could very well win on less money than Mallahan spends on overhead.

    Also, what the hell kind of experience does Mallahan have? We keep hearing that he’s a T-Mobile vice president, which sounds great, but Sarah Palin was a Governor – having a lofty title is not proof of competence. There are plenty of ways to fail upward in this world. What did he DO as a T-Mobile exec? What were his results? He won’t say, and neither will T-Mobile. Doesn’t inspire a lot of confidence about his competence.

    “we do not need increased property taxes”

    Oy. Listen carefully – it is NOT an increase, it is a renewal of the SAME housing levy passed in 2002 but just adjusted for inflation. That’s it.

    [/rant]

  11. BB

    Zelbinian,

    It’s Madame…and I have been a registered Democrat for 25 years.

    The City of Seattle has almost 10,000 employees and you are comparing that to managing a club or a campaign?

    McGinn is now a flip-flopper too.

    Property taxes..if it is set to expire, then it is an increase. Repeat…we need an income tax.

    BB

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    [...] And make all your friends and family vote too.  Blackmail them.  Whatever it takes.  Cause this one is important. The latest polling shows the mayor’s race is now a statistical dead heat. [...]

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  14. Ed

    Hi, Man soll nicht alles wissen (Bilanzen, Dividenden usw.), man muss alles verstehen. – Andre Kostolany

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