Saturday, March 12, 2016

What Do Trump Supporters REALLY Want?

As someone who made a living for the majority of my working life as a political observer and commentator, I view the rise of Donald Trump as a triumph of our political system - NOT its downfall as so many establishment politicians in BOTH parties, as well as the Lamestream Media (LSM) want you to believe.

The majority of people supporting Trump are NOT the nut jobs, racists, misogynists, and basic morons the political establishment - with the help of the highly biased LSM - would like to convince you they are. The truth is, both parties, as well as the LSM are scared sh*tless of Donald Trump. Why? Because they have absolutely no leverage that will allow them to exert the kind of control they have over Hillary, Bernie, Cruz, Rubio, Kasich, Romney, et. al. Trump is not beholden to anyone but the voters - and that's as it should be

The political establishment's biggest fear is the threat a President Trump represents to their socialist, one-world government ambitions, and taxpayer-funded elitist lifestyles, coupled with loosening the financial and political strangleholds they've had on the American people for generations

For the most part, Trump supporters don't care he is rude, crude and obnoxious. To them, his outrageous politically incorrect pontifications are a breath of fresh air. They find it absolutely amazing that a politician is actually saying out loud what some people are privately thinking. Most supporters are ordinary, hard-working Americans who honestly believe BOTH parties are hopelessly corrupt. They're frustrated and very angry, sincerely believing government elitists and the shadowy, behind the scenes political establishment don't care what's best for America, they care what's best for them. They believe the political establishment power brokers own the system, have rigged it in their favor, and the American Dream has become an endangered species. And to some extent, they're right.

A good many of them are ordinary Americans - small business people and working class folks who grew up during a better time in our nation. They came of age with the Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King preaching non-violent racial equality - not the Black Lives Matter brand of blatantly violent, anarchist racism. They grew up when hard work got you ahead, earned you more money, and opened career doors - unlike today's $15 an hour minimum wage entitlement mentality. They grew up when differences in religion weren't a reason for a beheading, or broadcasting it over the Internet. They grew up in a country where philosophical, economic, racial religious, sexual, and all the other differences dividing America today were not only tolerated, but were respected and celebrated. That's why Trump's "Make America Great Again" slogan resonates so strongly with them. They remember when America was great.

Younger Trump supporters long for the same American opportunity their parents and older peers once experienced and still believe in. They understand there is more than enough blame to go around about how we got to where we are today. But to them, it's a case of, "fix the problem, not the blame." Today's sharply divided America is NOT the nation these people want to raise their children in, or pass on to their grandchildren. They see Donald Trump as offering the ONLY hope they have of "fixing the problem" and creating a better life, and better country, for themselves, their kids, and their grandkids. That's because they've lost all faith in our current political system and in its so-called "leaders."

In spite of what the LSM would have you believe, many Trump supporters are Democrats and independents who tend to lean left. However, they view Hillary's blatant dishonesty and highly questionable ethics as offering only more of the same politically corrupt elitism - which doesn't give them any real reason to support her. Meanwhile, any thinking person who understands basic 6th-grade math also understands that in spite of all the promises of "free stuff," Bernie's "Democratic Socialist" platform is nothing more than the shortcut to financial hardship and a lower standard of living - both individually and collectively - and a much faster way to get there than the path we're already on. 

However, they also realize Cruz, Rubio, Kasich, Romney, and the Republicans offer nothing substantially different and/or better for them over the long term than the Democrats - it will just be more of the same, and business as usual. The party's attempts at trying to stop Trump have backfired, just reinforcing their view that a hopelessly corrupt system is actively working against them to preserve the political status quo for the benefit of the elitists in power. It's certainly a very sad commentary on the status of our political system today. However, it's what is driving the millions of new voters Trump's candidacy has awakened, and brought into our political process. 

What the entrenched political establishment refuses to understand or acknowledge, is that there is a revolution going on. That to millions of Americans, Donald Trump ironically represents what We The People want and need - and the elitists on BOTH sides have failed to deliver - real, true, and honest, Hope and Change.

Friday, January 22, 2016

An Explanation of the Trump Phenomenon

I know I haven’t posted anything on this blog in quite some time, but I’ve been experiencing life away from the poison of politics — especially those in Port Orchard — and found it agrees with me for the most part. However, now and again you come across something that resonates and just begs to be shared.

This is perhaps the very best explanation I’ve seen yet about why Donald Trump has captured the hearts and minds of so many average Americans. And the Trump phenomenon — while upsetting the proverbial apple cart of the political elite in both parties — is obviously something neither the Lamestream Media, Liberals, Conservatives, or establishment Republicans “get.” And that's why they are joining forces to align against him. The question yet to be answered, is can they thwart the will of the American people?

No matter what your politics are or who you support, this is an excellent read and well worth the three minutes or so of your life it will take. The author is the political correspondent for Bloomberg and wrote extensively about Obama — even before he was elected — and he did it with facts and more facts.

“Who is DonaldTrump?”

By Don Fredrick

The better question may be, “What is Donald Trump?” The answer: A giant middle finger from average Americans to the political and media establishment.

Some Trump supporters are like the 60s white girls who dated black guys just to annoy their parents. But most Trump supporters have simply had it with the Demosocialists and the “Republicans in Name Only.” They know there isn’t a dime’s worth of difference between Hillary Rodham and Jeb Bush, and only a few cents worth between Rodham and the other GOP candidates.

Ben Carson is not an “establishment” candidate, but the Clinton machine would pulverize Carson, and the somewhat rebellious Ted Cruz will (justifiably so) be tied up with natural born citizen lawsuits (as might Marco Rubio). The Trump supporters figure they may as well have some fun tossing Molotov cocktails at Wall Street and Georgetown while they watch the nation collapse.

Besides, lightning might strike, Trump might get elected, and he might actually fix a few things. Stranger things have happened. (The nation elected a Marxist in 2008 and Bruce Jenner now wears designer dresses.)

Millions of conservatives are justifiably furious. They gave the Republicans control of the House in 2010 and control of the Senate in 2014 and have seen them govern no differently than Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid. Yet those same voters are supposed to trust the GOP in 2016? Why? Trump did not come from out of nowhere. His candidacy was created by the last six years of Republican failures.

No reasonable person can believe that any of the establishment candidates will slash federal spending, rein in the Federal Reserve, cut burdensome business regulations, reform the tax code, or eliminate useless federal departments (the Departments of Education, Housing and Urban Development, Energy, etc.). Even Ronald Reagan was unable to eliminate the Department of Education. (Of course, getting shot at tends to make a person less of a risk-taker.) No reasonable person can believe that any of the nation’s major problems will be solved by Rodham, Bush, and the other dishers of donkey fazoo now eagerly eating corn in Iowa and pancakes in New Hampshire.

Many Americans, and especially Trump supporters, have had it with:
• Anyone named Bush
• Anyone named Clinton
• Anyone who’s held political office
• Political correctness
• Illegal immigration.
• Massive unemployment
• Phony “official” unemployment and inflation figures.
• Welfare waste and fraud
• People faking disabilities to go on the dole
• VA waiting lists
• TSA airport groping
• ObamaCare
• The Federal Reserve’s money-printing schemes
• Wall Street crooks like Jon Corzine
• Michelle Obama’s vacations
• Michelle Obama’s food police
• Barack Obama’s golf
• Barack Obama’s arrogant and condescending lectures
• Barack Obama’s criticism/hatred of America
• Valerie Jarrett
• “Holiday trees”
• Hollywood hypocrites
• Global warming nonsense
• Cop killers
• Gun confiscation threats
• Stagnant wages
• Chevy Volts
• Clock boy
• Pajama boy
• Mattress girl
• Boys in girls’ bathrooms
• Whiny, spoiled college students who can’t even place the Civil War in the correct century...

And that’s just the short list!

Trump supporters believe that no Democrat wants to address these issues, and that few Republicans have the courage to address these issues. They certainly know that none of the establishment candidates are better than barely listening to them, and Trump is their way of saying, “Screw you, Hillary Rodham Rove Bush!” The more the talking head political pundits insult the Trump supporters, the more supporters he gains. (The only pundits who seem to understand what is going on are Democrats Doug Schoen and Pat Caddell and Republican John LeBoutillier. All the others argue that the voters will eventually “come to their senses” and support an establishment candidate.)

But America does not need a tune-up at the same old garage. It needs a new engine installed by experts — and neither Rodham nor Bush are mechanics with the skills or experience to install it. Hillary Rodham is not a mechanic; she merely manages a garage her philandering husband abandoned. Jeb Bush is not a mechanic; he merely inherited a garage. Granted, Trump is also not a mechanic, but he knows where to find the best ones to work in his garage. He won’t hire his brother-in-law or someone to whom he owes a favor; he will hire someone who lives and breathes cars.

“How dare they revolt!” the “elites” are bellowing. Well, the citizens are daring to revolt, and the RINOs had better get used to it. “But Trump will hand the election to Clinton!” That is what the Karl Rove-types want people to believe, just as the leftist media eagerly shoved “Maverick” McCain down GOP throats in 2008 - knowing he would lose to Obama. But even if Trump loses and Rodham wins, she would not be dramatically different than Bush or most of his fellow candidates. They would be nothing more than caretakers, not working to restore America’s greatness but merely presiding over the collapse of a massively in-debt nation.

A nation can perhaps survive open borders; a nation can perhaps survive a generous welfare system. But no nation can survive both — and there is little evidence that the establishment candidates of either party understand that. The United States cannot forever continue on the path it is on. At some point it will be destroyed by its debt.

Yes, Trump speaks like a bull wanders through a china shop, but the truth is that the borders do need to be sealed; we cannot afford to feed, house, and clothe 200,000 Syrian immigrants for decades (even if we get inordinately lucky and none of them are ISIS infiltrators or Syed Farook wannabes); the world is at war with radical Islamists; all the world’s glaciers are not melting; and Rosie O’Donnell is a fat pig.

Is Trump the perfect candidate? Of course not. Neither was Ronald Reagan. But unless we close our borders and restrict immigration, all the other issues are irrelevant. One terrorist blowing up a bridge or a tunnel could kill thousands. One jihadist poisoning a city’s water supply could kill tens of thousands. One electromagnetic pulse attack from a single Iranian nuclear device could kill tens of millions. Faced with those possibilities, most Americans probably don’t care that Trump relied on eminent domain to grab up a final quarter acre of property for a hotel, or that he boils the blood of the Muslim Brotherhood thugs running the Council on American-Islamic Relations.

While Attorney General Loretta Lynch’s greatest fear is someone giving a Muslim a dirty look, most Americans are more worried about being gunned down at a shopping mall by a crazed lunatic who treats his prayer mat better than his three wives and who thinks 72 virgins are waiting for him in paradise.

The establishment is frightened to death that Trump will win, but not because they believe he will harm the nation. They are afraid he will upset their taxpayer-subsidized apple carts. While Obama threatens to veto legislation that spends too little, they worry that Trump will veto legislation that spends too much. You can be certain that if an establishment candidate wins in November 2016, his or her cabinet positions will be filled with the same people we’ve seen before. The washed-up has-beens of the Clinton and Bush administrations will be back in charge. The hacks from Goldman Sachs will continue to call the shots. Whether it is Bush’s Karl Rove or Clinton’s John Podesta who makes the decisions in the White House will matter little. If the establishment wins, America loses.

Don Fredrick
December 10, 2015

Friday, November 21, 2014

Republicans Blow a Golden Opportunity...

I don't particularly like President Obama and personally feel he is the worst president in the history of our nation. I used to say that about W, and that he was the worst president since Jimmy Carter — who I worked my ass off for, only to be SO sorely disappointed — until Obama came along. For those who are ready to call me a racist for saying so, let me say this... To paraphrase the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King — it isn't about the color of his skin, it's about the content of his character.

Now that I have your attention...

The Republican response to the president's immigration initiative is EXACTLY why the Republicans can never maintain a sustainable leadership position in Congress or the White House — and more importantly, with the voters. They are SO focused on making this president look bad that they are willing to cede millions of votes to the Democrats to do it. That is not only stupid, but highly irresponsible.

Does Obama exceed his constitutional authority in taking this action? Probably. However, Congress and the Republicans blew a golden opportunity to take the lead on this issue — which would have been the right thing to do — and they made a conscious decision not to capitalize on what could have been a long term sustainable voter bonanza for the party. What they fail to "get" is that it's their loss, and the sheer numbers of immigrants is going to bite them in the ass in the voting booth in the end. What the president has proposed is reasonable and responsible, and they should have been leading the charge for it — taking the issue away from the Democrats — not fighting it. Doing so, would have added millions of immigrants — and their children as they grew up into voting age — to the Republican Party.

I openly admit to getting caught up in the hysteria of what could happen if Obama gave blanket amnesty to all illegals in this country. The simple fact is he didn't do that. I'm OK with what he proposed. It's much more reasonable and responsible than I had anticipated. 

Persecuting this president will only have the negative effect of driving more people to the Democratic Party — just as their stand on abortion and other social issues has done. It seems like there isn't a way for the Republicans to shoot themselves in the foot they haven't thought of, but I have great confidence in their ability to find new and ingenious ways to do it.

Sunday, August 24, 2014

America Is NOT The Greatest Country In The World Anymore

Someone recently shared this clip with me on Facebook, and as we begin heading into the 2014 state and local elections as well as gear up for the 2016 presidential election, I thought it's well worth passing on. It’s actually a clip from the HBO show, The Newsroom. There is an eight-minute version that's much better, but not downloadable. It can be viewed here. However, the sentiments expressed by Jeff Daniels are something that I believe in our heart of hearts most Americans have come to believe.

So how do we restore America to greatness?

I believe we need to reject the divide and conquer culture of divisiveness that has been spawned by both political parties, and overthrow the radicals on both the left and right that have pitted us against each other for their own political gain. Neither the left’s dream of a Socialist America, or the right’s desire to return the the 1950s, will serve our future in this age of technology and globalization. We must come together as Americans — not Democrats or Republicans — and work together to rebuild America into the great nation we all know it’s capable of being.

That begins with electing moderate leaders at every level from the courthouse to the White House
not more of the ideologues on either side that have brought America to this point. We need true leaders with vision, passion, and strength, that understand the art of compromise, and who are willing to sacrifice partisan political advantage for the greater good of America.

At the national level, it certainly isn’t Hilary Clinton — nor is it Rand Paul or Ted Cruz. Who is it? I don’t know, but I sincerely believe that man or woman is among us. We — the voters — need to be strong enough to reject our own political party’s dictates if it becomes necessary to embrace the leader with the courage to stand up for what's right, and do what needs to be done. Personally, I’d like to see Tony Robbins step up to this, but that’s just wishful thinking on my part.

Someone commented on my Facebook post, saying, “Good thoughts Lary , but I think your showing the want to get back to the 50’s here when Ike was in charge and the highways were being built.”

Not true... I have no desire to return to the 50’s. In this age, where technology advances daily, the only technological advance we’ll never see is the ability to turn the clock back. I would like to see a return to strong family values, the ethic of hard work that’s rewarded, and pride in that work, as well as the standard of excellence once again becoming much higher than the mediocrity left leaning Liberals running our major cities and universities have forced us to accept.

Conversely, this is a much different world than it was in the 1950s. Returning to the 50s is an unrealistic expectation in this age of global business, technology, Islamic extremism, the growing gap between the haves and have nots, the drug culture, and the fact selling drugs in the inner city has created more high paying jobs than business in the same areas. This is not to mention the unbridled racism promoted by the Lamestream News Media as well as self-serving demagogues like Al Sharpton and Jesse Jackson, that so pervades our country. Just look at Ferguson, Missouri for proof.

That same poster also stated, “People of Faith need to exhibit How God can change lives for the better, not how Faith makes you want to control lives.” Faith is only a partial answer. Although I don't wear it on my sleeve, I am a man of faith who strongly believes God can make a difference in each of our lives, but as long as churches spend more time worrying about the building fund than about saving souls, the expectation they will make a huge difference in meeting the challenges we face in rebuilding the greatness of our nation, is in my view, somewhat unrealistic as well. It’s up to each one of us individually — with the help of God if we so choose to ask him for it — to step up and have the courage to be the change that returns America to greatness.

If this clip does nothing else, I hope it makes you think about America — and what’s once again possible...

Thursday, August 07, 2014

A Word About Commenting On Posts Here...

As with every election season, posts here, because of their tendency to be political in nature, are often commented upon. Our attitude has always been that comments on posts here are not only welcome, but are actually encouraged. 

However,  If you're not willing to sign your name to your comments, I'm not willing to publish them. 

This isn't about censorship, or about my choosing to ignore anything that disagrees with what I've written here. It's simply about commenters having the courage of their convictions, and the willingness to own their words. Nothing more. Nothing less.

We've all seen the rude behavior and hatefulness spawned by people hiding behind anonymous screen names on the Kitsap Sun site. While the paywall has discouraged some of that, there's still a fair amount of it going on. The Sound Publishing papers make commenters sign in to Facebook before they can comment as a way to keep the discussion civil, which I think is a pretty good solution. Unfortunately, since this blog is hosted by Google, that option isn't available to us.

What has prompted this post, is a rash of unsigned comments on some recent posts that I actually would have liked to publish, but won't because "Anonymous" isn't anyone's name. I believe that if people are forced to own the things they say, the quality of the discussion increases — as does its civility.

I hope you understand and agree. So in the future, sign your name and email address (which we don't publish or use in any other way) for verification, and look for your opinion to be published. It's just that simple.

Friday, July 25, 2014

Sheriff's Deputies Openly Oppose Hauge’s Re-election

While the Kitsap County Deputy Sheriffs Guild hasn’t determined which candidate it will endorse for Kitsap County prosecutor, it has decided which one it won't endorse — incumbent Russ Hauge.

“The prosecutor’s office is a mess, and Hauge is responsible for that, stated Guild President Jay Kent. "We are not going to get the office’s problems fixed until he leaves the office.” In its strongly worded statement, the Guild said that while it was still assessing the other three candidates —
Bruce Danielson, Tina Robinson, and Bob Scales — it had decided to officially oppose Hauge and encouraged the voters to consider one of the other three in the August 5 primary.

Kent explained that the Guild took the unusual position of issuing an “anti-endorsement” because of its strong opposition to Hauge. He said the Guild wanted more time to assess the other three candidates, but that it was “firmly set” against Hauge’s reelection.

Kent explained that the Guild and its members had “no confidence” in the Prosecuting Attorney Civil Division. Kent said, “We are especially unhappy with Hauge’s management of civil law matters. For our members, how the civil lawyers handle cases matters as much if not more. If our members get sued they are supposed to be defended by an attorney from the civil division, but most of our members would consider demanding that outside legal counsel be appointed if certain of Hauge’s attorneys were assigned to their case.”

He went on to say, “We have seen his civil attorneys up close, and we would not want them handling our matters, given their recent performance.” Kent acknowledged that the way Hauge’s attorneys handled a number of recent cases with the Deputies Guild and other County labor unions influenced its assessment. But he added: “Yes, they have interfered with our labor contract, and are a big part of the reason we have been working without one since 2009. But it’s their overall performance and apparent incompetence that have alarmed us the most. As Deputy Sheriffs we are held to a high performance and ethics standard — and should be — but Hauge needs to hold his own deputy prosecutors to a similar standard.”

Kent mentioned that two of Hauge’s deputies recently were cited by the Washington State Public Employment Relations Commission for withholding records from the Guild and being less than truthful to an arbitrator about it. “Our deputies would be fired if they lie, but as far as I know Hauge’s hasn’t done anything to investigate these deputies.”

Kent also mentioned the Guild had identified other “ethical lapses” by Hauge’s deputies. Hauge’s chief civil prosecutor Jacquelyn Aufderheide was also cited by the Public Employment Relations Commission for unlawfully interfering with an agreement between the emergency dispatchers union and the County.

He said that the Guild was concerned that another one of Hauge’s deputies had admitted to what the Guild viewed as “potential tampering” with a lawsuit between the Guild and the County by “improperly” talking to County judges while the case was pending. Kent noted that the lawyer later changed her story about the context of that exchange despite the fact that court transcripts demonstrate otherwise. “It’s clear one of her versions of the story was untrue, yet we have seen Hauge take no action on this whatsoever.”

Guild Vice President Andy Aman expressed similar concerns about the County’s civil lawyers. “Of course our members are frustrated that they interfere with our contract and litigate everything to death, without apparent purpose. But just as big of a concern for us is the apparent lack of professionalism we have directly observed. I would not want them representing me if I were personally sued.”

Aman explained that he recently watched Aufderheide in court trying to get a brief filed well after the filing deadline. “She explained to the judge that she didn’t know that there was a deadline for filing the brief. First of all, I just didn’t believe her but if that’s true that the chief civil prosecutor doesn’t know what the rules are for filing a brief that’s also very concerning. Frankly, I was embarrassed for her as I watched.” Aman noted that “they seem to make a lot of mistakes and then make excuses for those mistakes.”

Monday, July 14, 2014

Mayor Matthes Takes Another Cheap Shot

I have made it a point NOT to publicly comment on anything Port Orchard Mayor Tim Matthes does, doesn’t do, or what passes for leadership and/or management these days at City Hall. The ONLY exception was to point out the blatant lies contained in his Citizens Report on the annexation of the Bethel Corridor. In that report, he stated the Council NEVER discussed the costs of service delivery — in spite of the fact there was more than a YEAR of public process — including numerous Finance Committee meetings, several City Council meetings, and in a number of public hearings involved.

In that report, he stated, “When discussions were happening regarding the Bethel Corridor annexation, it was touted that the annexation would bring in a lot of revenue. What was never discussed was the costs to provide service and what the impact would be to the City.”

That is either a blatant lie — or the words of someone completely uninformed about the entire annexation process for Bethel, and how the City went about it — in spite of his being a member of the City Planning Commission at the time. You can find my response here.

Last week, Matthes attempted to imply that I was involved in some kind of sinister back room deal that gave away the City’s water right to C&M Golf LLC, owners of McCormick Woods Golf Course. Nothing could be further from the truth. C&M Golf owns the well in question — NOT the City. With this mind, Councilman Rob
Putaansuu was quoted in the Port Orchard Independent as saying, “This is petty politics, it really is. I think this whole situation is politically motivated and Matthes is trying to point to something Lary Coppola (former mayor) did wrong.”

According to the Independent, Putaansuu said Matthes' questions about the Well 4B water rights have been answered. He noted Matthes sent out an email asking the questions, but he doesn’t think the Mayor really wanted answers to those questions.

“He never included the city attorney (Greg Jacoby) in the email requesting the information,”
Putaansuu told the Independent. “He (Jacoby) is the one who could have provided the information. There was an email send out Friday (July 4) by the attorney that answered all of the mayor’s questions.”

The agreement he is questioning was originally approved by the City Council in 2003 — when Jay Weatherill was Mayor. The Department of Ecology (DOE) didn’t approve it until 2005, when Kim Abel was Mayor, and the City didn’t receive the final DOE approval paperwork until 2008. Why it took the state so long to issue that approval and deliver the final paperwork to the City is a mystery that can only be solved in Olympia. However, City Attorney Greg Jacoby has confirmed this timeline, and in 2008 it was he that advised me to sign the agreement — just as the sitting Mayor is obligated to sign any other Council-approved document.

Had the agreement been delivered to the city in a timely manner by DOE, either Mayor Weatherill or Mayor Abel would have signed that document and this would be a total non-issue. So if petty politics ISN'T the reason for this to come forward now, any thinking person has to wonder WHY Mayor Matthes and his political mentor Gil Michael, have brought it forward at all, because in the end, the City benefited. As
Putaansuu has suggested, it appears to be petty politics at its worst. Or perhaps my wife and I looking at homes in McCormick Woods recently has spooked Matthes, who is rumored to want another term as Mayor.
 
Michael also called for Councilman Jerry Childs and Putaansuu to recuse themselves from this issue because they play golf at McCormick Woods. This is an inane request, that borders on the absurd. All he is doing is trying to cast doubt on Putaansuu and Childs' integrity in the minds of low-information voters — something that in my view he’s no stranger to doing.

The truth is, Childs and Putaansuu have done absolutely nothing wrong. Michael also points to Putaansuu's support of C&M Golf partner Shawn Cucciardi when he ran for Port Of Bremerton Commissioner in 2011 as another reason to recuse himself — in spite of being Chair of the City's Utility Committee. His support of Cucciardi has nothing at all to do with THIS issue, and it was done as a private citizen — NOT as a council member. It is absolutely no different than Michael’s political support of Council members Fred Chang and Bek Ashby. Using Michael’s logic, they both should have to recuse themselves as well.

In the future, I would appreciate it if the Mayor and Mr. Michael would acquaint themselves with the actual facts before implying I'm involved in something sinister, and attempting to implicate me in it with NO proof whatsoever. Their cheap shots at me, at my character, and at my integrity, have gotten real old.

Monday, June 30, 2014

SCOTUS Decision on Hobby Lobby Fuels Fundraising Firestorm

Within hours of the Supreme Count decision on Hobby Lobby being announced, I received no less than 13 emails from various Progressives — starting with Senator Patty Murray — and from organizations with high-minded sounding names, dribbling all the way down to local candidates who have zero horsepower to change anything. What they all had in common was an obvious "outrage" at the SCOTUS decision, attached to an angry demand that I send them money immediately — anywhere from $1,000 to $3 — so they can "fight" this "evil decision."

And how exactly are they going to do that? Just like Citizens United case was, it’s a SUPREME COURT decision! That’s the end of the line legally. Game over! Do they REALLY think I’m so stupid, or so uninformed, that I don’t know they can’t do a damn thing about it — especially local politicians? They obviously think a lot people are that dumb, or they wouldn't be sending this stuff out in blanket spam emails to hundreds of thousands of people across the country.

I’m not commenting either way on the decision itself, only on the fact that the political fundraising machine didn’t lose a minute's time to try and capitalize financially on it — even though just like Citizen's United, all the money in the world isn’t going to change it. Don't get me wrong. I get the same kind of things from the Republicans and their conservative cohorts on a pretty regular basis as well. Today it included a few looking for money to celebrate "Religious Liberty" — whatever that means. It's just that this one seemed well prepared in advance — by both sides — as the first one arrived at about 8 a.m — or 11 a.m. in Washington D.C. where the SCOTUS is located.

Is it just me, or does anyone else think this kind of political fundraising gamesmanship has contributed to America becoming so polarized as a nation? Does anyone else wonder why we are being pitted against each other by nameless, faceless "organizations" from both sides masquerading as advocates for issues we believe in, when in reality we're pretty clueless about who is behind them? Have our elected officials intentionally given up on the ability to compromise — even on things that are good for us — because it's become more about the money than about servant leadership? Consequences for the country be damned — it's become some kind of perverted  contest to see how bad they can make the other side look than it is about doing what's right for America — which, in my view at least, is why America is in the pitiful shape it is today.

Time for a change...

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Port Orchard Ponders Tightening Up Pot Zoning


The Port Orchard City Council will vote On June 24, on an ordinance to restrict marijuana retailers, growers, and processors from locating within 1,000 feet of home-based day care businesses. While there are restrictions about where marijuana enterprises can locate, home-based day cares are excluded under the state’s Liquor Control Board’s rules, while nursery schools and preschools are not.

On June 10, the city staff presented the revised ordinance for the council’s consideration. At that meeting, Development Director Nick Bond said the city wasn’t aware of the state’s omission of home day cares in May, when the council approved the current ordinance. What he meant to say, was HE was not aware of the omission — which isn’t surprising.

Bond is in so far over his head in what is his first job as a planning director, it isn't even funny. He’s barely worked as a planner, much less a planning department head. Makes me wonder if that isn’t exactly why Mayor Tim Matthes and puppetmaster Gil Michael picked him. His inexperience has allowed them to run amuck unchecked, proposing things any experienced planning director might recommend against. But that’s an entirely different story that deserves looking into.

On the surface, one would think passing this should be a no-brainer. Sadly, Councilman Fred Chang opposes it, saying in a Kitsap Sun article, that he sympathizes with daycare owner Terri Squires, who owns a home-based child care business inside the proposed 1,000 foot buffer, but said, “It sort of pains me a little bit that we might curtail activity in an industrial center where we have so little (industrial zoning.)”

Chang is obviously clueless about how economic development actually works, and/or the fact the city receives ZERO TAX REVENUE from marijuana enterprises. The Port Orchard Industrial Park is meant to be a place for businesses to locate that create jobs, and whose sales generate tax revenue for the city. Marijuana businesses do neither — and there are FOUR — yes count ‘em, FOUR — marijuana producers at the industrial park. The number of jobs created by marijuana enterprises in comparison to a manufacturing operation using the same amount of that scarce, industrially zoned square footage Chang is so worried about — including other businesses located at that industrial park — is laughable.

ALL the tax money marijuana businesses generate goes directly to the state, while local governments are forced to deal with the negative impact, and local taxpayers get to foot the bill. I’m not opposed to legalized marijuana, but do believe local taxpayers shouldn’t be forced to deal with the consequences of it while the state treats it like a cash cow with no responsibility for the outcome.

Thursday, June 19, 2014

Handicapping the Kitsap Prosecutor's Race

For the first time since his initial election, when he challenged and beat incumbent C. Danny Clem 20 years ago, Kitsap County Prosecutor Russ Hauge has drawn opposition. But it isn't just one opponent, it's three — including one from his own party.

In the primary election to be held in August, the top two vote getters will face each other in November. The big question is whether or not Hauge will survive the primary. In a poll on the Kitsap Sun, he ran dead last — well behind the other three. Hauge seems to have drawn the ire of the community over what has amounted to a taxpayer funded, personal vendetta against Marcus Carter and the Kitsap Rifle and Revolver Club (KRRC) — that has gone on for over 15 years. According to a Public Records Request we filed, Hauge has spent nearly a half million of our tax dollars losing this well-publicized case in court to Carter — who acted as his own attorney — four different times.

In the meantime, because he isn't going to win this case in court, Hauge has unleashed the county's Department of Community Development (DCD) against the KRRC, trying to basically shut the club down using land use rules. A source inside DCD has told us a controversial new ordinance currently under consideration that would all but shut down the club's operation, is being driven by Hauge's office — not the commissioners. We are currently preparing a Public Records Request to see if that's true or not. Apparently, the fact the ordinance would wreak havoc on local businesses, homeowners, and home sellers countywide — giving county code enforcers the authority to come on to your property at will, uninvited, is considered collateral damage in Hauge's fight to prevail in this vendetta. 

But back to handicapping the race...
Hauge is a Democrat, and his opponents are Republican Tina Robinson, a public defender; Democrat Bob Scales, former City Councilman and Mayor of Bainbridge Island, and Independent Bruce Danielson. All three are practicing attorneys. 

Bruce Danielson: Danielson challenged Hauge four years ago and came close to unseating him, garnering 47 percent of the vote. I don't see him getting anywhere near that total this go around, as in my view, a lot of people didn't vote "for" Danielson, but voted "against" Hauge. While the sheer number of Democrats on Bainbridge Island made the difference for Hauge, this time, voters countywide have more choices. 

I'm not sure Danielson, who leans heavily conservative, will survive the primary. A lot of his support last time came from Republicans, who didn't have a candidate four years ago, but who will support Robinson — their party's candidate, this time. 

Tina Robinson: Robinson is a smart lady, who prior to becoming an attorney was a business manager with Group Health, and had a successful career there. Her Achilles heal is that while she is a competent defense attorney, with the experience to run the business end of the Prosecutors Office, she admittedly has zero experience in the civil arena — which includes land use — a blood sport in Kitsap County. She said in an endorsement interview I was part of, that she believed the office has experienced, competent civil attorneys, and she would rely on their expertise. The problem with that is it leaves the inmates running the asylum. 

The Republicans smell blood in the water and will make a strong financial push to support Robinson. She's already raised more money that Hauge, and could wind up in the Top Two. But in the end, her lack of civil experience could make the difference between winning and losing.

Bob Scales: Scales is, in my view, far and away the most qualified candidate, and should be a no brainer best choice for voters. He has significantly more actual courtroom experience than almost all of the other candidates combined — especially Hauge, who has almost none, save losing to Carter and losing the case of the police dog that was shot and killed. He also brings the requisite administrative experience from King County and Seattle, as well as having served on the Bainbridge island City Council, where he was selected by the Council to serve a term as Mayor.

The Bainbridge Island Democrat isn't as well known here as he is in Seattle, where he's spent his career practicing law for King County and the City of Seattle. Whenever there have been thorny issues to deal with — such as the Department of Justice's (DOJ) probe of the Seattle Police Department — Scales has been the "go to guy" to get to the bottom of things and solve the problems, because he knows how to get things done.

The problem Scales has is his own party's Precinct Committee Officers (PCOs) who have closed ranks behind their incumbent, Hauge — in spite of his pathetic record. This is the same group of crybabies that publicly whined in the Kitsap Sun like spoiled children when County Commissioners Charlotte Garrido and Rob Gelder had the integrity to select the most qualified candidate — Linda  Streissguth — to replace Josh Brown over their preferred choice, Leslie Daugs. The fact Daugs has zero administrative, budgeting, financial, or personnel management experience didn't matter to them. It was all about Daugs openly admitted ultra-liberal politics — not her qualifications. What's wrong with this picture?

But if Hauge is eliminated in the primary — which is a very real possibility — the party will unite to support Scales just as it has Streissguth in her battle to hold on to the Commissioner's seat against formidable Republican challenger Ed Wolfe.

Conclusion: The election will come down to Scales vs. Robinson. There is just too much anti-Hauge sentiment in this county over the issues with Carter and the KRRC. Republicans will push hard for Robinson, but in the end, with Hauge out, the Bainbridge Island Democrats will cinch it for Scales — which will be a good thing for Kitsap County.