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January 9, 1984

Oops!

Through my involvement with Hampshire College's pioneering S. African divestiture policy (first in the US - the year prior to my freshman year) I was able to attend several of the very early meetings of the trade organization, the SRI Forum.

Below is a letter to a Hampshire College Board Member, John Watts, a Texas born investment banker/lawyer. It concerns the board's selection of an investment adviser, post their divestment decision. This letter introduces my John Watts story, below.

I don't know Mr. Watts 'business' profile, but another Hampshire Board member, Gerald Levin, ended up running Time Warner for a time. Purely speculation, but presumably this guy had a hand in it, though I've no idea of the power career of this 1980's investment banker. He's perhaps best know on campus for giving a graduation speech shortly after the Reagan era fall of the Berlin wall. Quote "The wicked witch of the east, socialism, is now dead". No mention of who the wicked witch of the west was, or is, but I'd suspect he had something, or someone, in mind.

I'd been warned about Mr. Watts, presumably because of actions regarding some of the first generation divestiture activists. I only recall one conversation with him. It was about a mountain area in Northern Mexico that we had both visited. (Creel, Chihuahua - a base of Pancho Villa's and a favorite of mine).

Perhaps my big mistake was later suggesting Republican Dan Evans, former president of Evergreen, to replace the outgoing College President. Mr. Evans was a Senate Colleague of Brock Adams, a parent and also a Board Member. Speculating here, but I'd guess that Evans' quick departure from the Senate was Brock's doing (in hindsight, rightly) and Evans in Adams' career ending scandal (in my opinion likely wrongly).

I've got a theory about some of this, with some additional evidence - more current. Not sure if it all would hold up, but it is something that could be investigated.

Continue reading "Oops!" »

March 6, 1994

Access to Public GIS Records

In 1994, under City Attorney Mark Sidran, the issue of public access to GIS records was, surprisingly, actively being debated. That's hard to believe in this day and age - thank current State Attorney General Rob McKenna and the newspapers of this State led by Michael Fancher of the Seattle Times and their 'open government' initiatives.

At the date of this writing I was employed full time with King County and was attending graduate school in geography, as well as serving on the board of Vision Seattle. I interviewed Tom Nolan(Asterisk), head of Seattle's GIS unit for this piece, but I didn't include any quotes in this article. I don't remember the reasons why.

Besides a question of public record access I'm also 'envisioning' a future for the profession here, to some extent that does seem to be finally happening on a broad scale.

July 6, 1994

District Elections

This isn't so much a biographical item as an interesting story which I was a somewhat close spectator of.

The district election reform effort would play out as a major scandal. Though not conceived as an attack on the Seattle establishment, it was certainly an effort to make electability more accessible to the average citizen. Kerman Kermoade, the author of the following clipping was a friend on the Vision board, doing this as a project for his later life Poly Sci degree. I was at the initial organizing meetings for their effort in support and followed the issue loosely.

As you may recall this became a scandal when it was revealed that food executive (and active Republican) Tom Stewart was making illegal contributions as a way to seek revenge for previous battles with the City bureaucracy. I wasn't active in the campaign nor know anything about the details of Stewart's other city battles. Stewart, with his company, has since left the State, one of several biggies in the last decade or so.

Tacoma, as you may know, has a mixed system of at-large and district seats - the particular mix I came to favor out of observing these debates. Seattle still talks about it, but does nothing.

February 12, 1997

Leveraging the Law through the UW Law School

Before Bill Gates became a big donor at the UW he, through his Father Bill Senior, was involved in an effort to, IMO, bully the campus in order to build a new law school building. This was at the same time they were being actively investigated for anti-trust violations by the US DOJ.

I was the first to write on the subject, below. Rick Anderson of the Seattle Weekly also wrote on the subject and did a better job than I.

Do make note of the advice of Architecture Professor Folke Nyberg, at the end of the article. The Gates would later step up to the plate and make a fair contribution, though not without a fair amount of bad blood with those departments who had been pushed to the back of the line.

(Asterisk)This **may** well also mark the start of their entire philanthropic effort, through the Gates Foundation.

For another perspective worthy of consideration look at this 'priority' as an expression of the authority of Land Use law and it's Institutional Planning regulations to hold itself above its own regulations....

March 14, 1998

Affirmative Action

I've commented on the affirmative action debate pretty consistently with one single point - it is more important to be able to get rid of mistakes in hires (and create new openings) than it is to assign fewer openings to minorites - affirmative action may well actually increase the number of 'mistake' hires. At this point we need to get rid of those affirmative action mistakes, old school discriminators, and perhaps the worst, those that have abused these rules whose spirit is the reduction of hate, not the inflaming and manipulation of it.

This letter is from the Seattle Times.

(I'm not totally sure on the year for this piece - last digit of the year is torn)

June 22, 2008

'La Femme Nikita'

La Femme Nikita

Directed by Luc Besson

Starring Anne Parillaud with Jean Reno

1990

This is the original version, not the competent U.S. remake starring Bridget Fonda or the Candian TV series by the same name. (I've not seen the TV series).

Besson is the maestro of stylish european action films and this movie may well prove to be his biggest masterpiece.

Parillaud plays 'Nikita' a very drugged out survivor of a drug store robbery gone bad shootout where everyone else dies, including the police, one cop by her hand. After conviction she is given the opportunity by the French State to enter a training program for assassins. As one might expect the State does not necessarily have her best interests at heart, viewing her as an expendable 'asset'.

Jean Reno plays the 'cleaner', at the ultimate moment of Nikita's 'sobering' - will she survive this gunfight or not?

June 24, 2008

'Rosewood'

Rosewood

Directed by John Singleton

Starring Ving Rhames with Jon Voight and Don Cheadle

1997

Like the John Hopkins vehicle 'Amistad' this movie will make white audiences uncomfortable.

Based on a true story, Rhames plays a drifting decorated WWI vet who arrives in the Florida town of Rosewood just prior to a false rape allegation by a white woman against another black male. This triggers what could basically be characterized as a genocidal raging mob killing many of the black citizens of the small town.

Rhames plays the protector.

This move is very much underrated and underappreciated - a must see.

June 27, 2008

'Rambo'

Rambo

Directed by Ted Kotcheff

Starring Sylvester Stallone

1982

Rambo is not the sort of classic movie I review. However a comment by a Veteran, in Pierce County, seat of my hometown of Tacoma prompted a great deal of speculation. Pierce County, home of the Army base, has a large former army contingent and their presence is not one to ignore - especially in the trades and blue collar fields.

His historical comment was simply this, that 'Rambo' captured the Reagan era angst of Veterans and their treatment upon return from combat in Vietnam - a cohort of people at war with their own country.

This is true, and this movie marks a crucial point in the history of the United States. One caveat though - in the Army it can also be fellow soldiers - outside of your unit - who just might NOT have your back. That's a tougher subject, and a longer discussion....

August 1, 2008

Cops, Crooks, and Politicians

Cops, Crooks, and Politicians

By Neil W. Moloney

With a foreword by Former Governor John Spellman

1993

This book is not quite the tell all that the title promises, however for those concerned with public safety, post WW2 corruption, or Pacific NW history this is a must read.

This is a cop's story of an uncompleted investigation, starting with a 1954 murder of a Seattle Police Officer in a Greenwood neighborhood bank robbery. The perpetrators were Canadians, apparently connected.

The author, former chief of the Seattle PD, Port of Seattle, and the Washington State Patrol, started his career about this time. He rose to the top ranks in the 1974 corruption scandals, a story he also addresses.

He doesn't name American names, or at least new ones. He does talk at great length about Canadian corruption and implies that there are similarities in 'practice' on this side of the border.

One name he mentions a lot, and seems to like, is former US Attorney Brock Adams who did his best to prosecute the case. Curiously this book was written not long after Adam's disgracement on no evidence.

Reading between the lines the names not said would be Norm Maleng and the Judges of King County, to start. Moloney though is a good cop, and states only those conclusions that he can back up.

It is up to the reader to bring their own experience to the story - and to ask themselves whether those same corrupt practices continue - or, as more likely, reinvent themselves.

The Moral Center

The Moral Center

By David Callahan

2006

Callahan rose to notice in America with his early 2004 book 'Cheating Culture' where he makes the case that America has been taken over by those who dishonestly make their living - on the right and left.

'Moral Center' is his 2006 post election reflection on solutions for that problem.

I knew Callahan as an undergraduate (where Brock Adams was Trustee, in addition to his duties as US Secretary of Transportation). Callahan was on the political track while I was a economist into divestiture and workplace democracy. But we did have the chance to have several worthwhile conversations - my strongest memory is noticing that he was getting letters published in the New York Times on a regular basis. Definitely someone worth talking with, and hopefully I for him.

I'll leave his solutions to you, but let me extract his quoting of FDR for your thought.

Roosevelt was masterful at laying claim to the ideals of self-creation and personal liberty through hard work. In his 1936 speech to the Democratic Convention, Roosevelt decried industrial barons who had imposed a "new despotism", and said that "the average man once more confronts the problem that faced the Minute Man." He exhorted America to fight a "new industrial dictatorship" that crushed "individual initiative". FDR than spelled out his vision of freedom: "Liberty requires opportunity to make a living - a living decent according to the standard of the time, a living which gives a man not only enough to live by, but something to live for .....Today we stand committed to the proposition that freedom is no half-and-half affair. If the average citizen is guaranteed equal opportunity in the polling place, he must have equal opportunity in the marketplace."

Just prior to the conclusion of the book he quotes from another early 20th century leader, Supreme Court Justice Louis Brandeis.

We can have concentrated wealth in the hands of the few or we can have Democracy. We cannot have both.

August 10, 2008

King County Superior Court Candidates - Suzanne Parisien Email Exchange

A frequent complaint of anyone who takes their responsibility as a citizen seriously is the lack of decent information on judicial races. Getting a good picture of a Judge is difficult. Unless one is a regular observer of the court - a practicing lawyer, an intelligent court clerk, or above average police officer. One area where we definitely could do better is holding these individuals responsible for the consequences of their actions when the mess up - if it rise to that level, even just once. Even more important of course is removing such a dangerous individual from the practice BEFORE they ever get to consideration for a judicial seat.

I've got no smoking gun on Parisiene - however I do have a bit of information, enough to cause me not to vote for her, absent evidence to the contrary, and perhaps of some use to you.

Parisien is a 90k a year Assistant Attorney General since 1997, hired by Christine Gregoire.

My direct knowledge of her is through an email exchange - a response to an email to Ron Sims about the trickiness of dealing with abuse issues - whether they be sexual, racial, or anything. I don't think that Ms. Parisiene read my email closely enough to realize that I wasn't disagreeing with his assessment of Gregoire - and as such perhaps not as pro-Gregoire as Ms. Parisien thought. This was in the spring of the 2004 Gubernatorial year when Sims was contesting for the old style democratic nomination - I haven't checked but I would assume Ms. Parisien did go through the appropriate hoops in order to volunteer for her boss's campaign.
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I've done a quick google on Parisien - perhaps the best info out there are the various candidate interviews done by political organizations including partisan legislative district bodies. She graduated from SU and went to Law School back east, practicing there for a time, returning here in 1997 for an AG position. She moved to Mercer Island 6 years ago. She's done a lot of domestic violence work, including with King County, and this is what concerns me.

For a supposed expert on the subject of abuse her answer strikes me as curiously lacking. Some State Departmental employess, including some in the AG's office make it a practice of 'abusing' the law on harrassment, etc, for their own benefit and, apparently, 'control' needs. I have to wonder if Ms. Parisien hasn't in fact used my particular case in order to herself take advantage of this weakness in our current judicial oversight ability.

I can't say for sure, but absent a strong condemnation of these practices on the behalf of State employees in Downtown Seattle Superior Court this is definitely a way too risky candidate.

Curiously, the King County Bar Association only rates her as 'qualified' - the third highest ranking in the race for position #1. The gay bar group ranks her as unqualified. I'm not up on current legal practice in Seattle, but I do hope that this represents a knowledge of the abuses of Gregoire and her associates as it applies to the practice. Certainly there are at least a few folks who are more than fed up with it - some of them are likely even friends of Sims!

The damage done by Gregoire and her cohorts to all aspects of authority in this State - public and private sector has yet to be determined. This is why I oppose Gregoire. That's not saying I have any legal evidence against her, it's just saying she's just too risky to hire. There are areas that do need further professional investigation - on probable cause, if you will. Most notable of those are her other 'professional' associates.

Though the King County Court's may well believe that any individual capable of making a rational, legal, argument against the behavior of a State Employee (on OR off the clock) is in fact the equivalent of a violent lawless sexual predator it may well be that it is the opposit which is the case.

I'm still open minded about Parisien, but absent her condemnation of these practices, including as they've been applied to myself, she is, at best, not fit for this office. I won't burden you with an articulation of the worst case...at least not yet.

Here's the email exchange, again, from the 2004 Gregoire Campaign:

Continue reading "King County Superior Court Candidates - Suzanne Parisien Email Exchange" »

August 18, 2008

Measuring State AG McKenna - and Pierce County Prosecutor Gerald Horne

I'm a fan of current Washington State Attorney General McKenna. I saw him work in detail on the Sound Transit Board in the tough days leading up to the passage of the first Bond Issue. Many times he was the sole voice of dissent, though frequently he worked with his fellow King County Councilmember, the relatively independent Maggi Fimia of Shoreline. Although he himself was opposed to the project he was always constructive and his involvement led to a strong start for that agency - and a strong bus dominated plan of service for his own district area, the Eastside of King County.

Unfortunately the Sound Transit Board lost its leadership continuity in the days after passage. My opinion is that the turnover was a powerplay by the powers that be (operating through the Greater Seattle Chamber of Comerce). There was also a well managed financial 'scandal' that pretty much finished the job not too much later..

I'm voting for McKenna this time around, and I think he'll win. However I am concerned as to whether he's keeping his own 'continuity of leadership' as he matures in office. I'm of the opinion the barrel is rotten and we all know what all to often happens to good folks in such a situation.

Top on the bad apple level, and more senior to McKenna, would be the former AG, Christine Gregoire, and, on the Republican side King County Prosecutor (Seattle and immediate suburbs) Satterberg. FWIW, these two are the start of the Government 'Blame Game' cited effectively by current GOP gubernatorial candidate Dino Rossi.

Continue reading "Measuring State AG McKenna - and Pierce County Prosecutor Gerald Horne" »

August 25, 2008

Emerald City Antithesis (c), #3

Your status as a citizen in Seattle is the direct inverse of your ability to express your opinion to an elected local official.

If you are able to significantly effect both positive and negative opinions, double the effect.

If you are able to express your opinion with an eye to the budget, multiply it.

If you are to do all of the above, use an exponent.

(If you wish a positive Status in Seattle find a way to give bucketloads of cash to Foster, Pepper, and Sheffleman and 'volunteer' to speak for one of their tax revenue 'deals'.)

Legal Weather Report: Wither Foster, Pepper, and Sheffelman?

Foster, Pepper and Sheffleman is arguably the most powerful law firm in Washington State at the moment.

They rose to prominence as counsel to the well run savings bank, Washington Mutual, I believe avoiding the scandals of the savings and loan debacle of Keating, et al.

Under Norm Rice they entered the public bonding arena doing the first low-income housing bond. This looks to be largely the accomplishment of senior Partner Judy Runstad - a former land use official who married the inheirited wealth of the Wright and Runstad construction firm, Jon Runstad. (I'm not sure in exactly what order these events occurred).

At the passage of the first Sound Transit regional light rail bond they rose to an equal status with the traditional public brokers, Preston Gates and Ellis - sharing the responsibility - and operating out of the Greater Seattle Chamber of Commerce.

Under circumstances I'm still trying to figure out they seem to have risen to the top, with the still quiet fall of PGE (though not Bill Gates, Sr.).

However in the eyes of this recently re-activated and somewhat educated observer, they seem to have lost the support of many of their earlier backers. I won't go into details here, but it looks like, in the eyes of their old 'friends' they've now become the same as the old 'boss'.

August 28, 2008

Emerald City Antithesis (c) #4

Although the folks at the University of Washington believe that is their intellectual brain power that justifies above average salaries it is in fact an unlawful conspiracy of politically correct extortion, and only those with the 'literary' capability of accusing anyone who actually works for a living - blue collar or small business - of being somehow morally deficient - and worthy of sub-par compensation.

Technical and mathematical fields, the nerds, are somewhat exempt from this classfication, however for the more socially skillful of these individuals the burden of 'guilt tripping' is only heightened. A technically capable individual who is also intellectually honest will get the full 'hazing' from all parties, right and left.

For a related take on this see a Crosscut article by Richard Morrill.

September 8, 2008

Fannie, Freddie, and Kerry

An interesting trifecta of financial news this weekend - perhaps more significant than either 2008 VP choice, of the previous weeks.

First, the feds announced a takeover of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, the two competing federally created financial coroorations underwriting much of the residential owner occupied 'market'.

Perhaps more significant, at least locally, is the ouster of long time Washington Mutual President Kerry Killinger. I was doing some web research this morning on the recent history of the Killinger's relationship with WAMU, as well as that of its long time outside Counsel, Foster Pepper Shefelman.

It was my recollection that Killinger had recently been taken to task for giving himself a bonus as the firm was on its way from to 15% of it's all time stock price high. I also recalled some changes in the relationship with FPS. Although I was able to find plenty of references to shareholder lawsuits, I didn't find anything in my quick research.

This quote though, from FPS Senior Partner Judy Runstad in 2001 is particularly telling:

2nd item in Godden's Column

Any chance FPS will be held to account for their actions?

September 11, 2008

Isn't it Ironic X 2

Isn't it ironic that on 9/11, the anniversary of the bombing of the NYC financial center, the World Trade towers, that our financial system is collapsing in a more damaging manner than could of ever been hoped for by Al Qaida - in substantial part because of the war profiteering of the Bush/Cheney administration and friends.

But if you think that is ironic, consider the fact that the reformist Republican Candidate has, by an edge, a better case for being able to deal with the economic situation than do the Democrats...

(See this piece from the Financial Times of London for a perspective on how Democratic members of the Congressional majority are looking.)

Emerald City Antithesis (c), #5

Though legal counsel for the currently troubled WAMU savings bank have crafted a careful image of social and environmental responsibility their financial practices and 'PC' abuses of power will in fact result in a net loss on these issues and the individuals themselves responsible will continue to profit from these 'changes'.

September 12, 2008

Twin Towers of Sexual Insecurity - North Tower

"Lucia, Lucia"

Lucia, Lucia

Directed by and adapted for the screen by Antonio Serrano

Based on the book 'Hija del Canibal' by Rosa Montero (Daughter of the Cannibal)

2003

This movie uses a detective mystery concerning the lead character's missing husband to explore the middle aged angst of a creative soul. Like Almodovar the director, Antonio Serrano, captures feminine neuroses with incredibly accuracy. At times it all seems a bit soap operaish, but don't let that distract your attention, there is something very real going on here.

September 15, 2008

The Perception of the Victim

A curious legal standard of Gregoire's generation under the law is 'the perception of the victim' .

I'm gonna challenge that bit of abusive double speak here, but first let me note that it is not without a rational basis, no matter how badly misapplied.

Folks who have been abused are sensitive, actions that most of us consider part of the rough and tumble of daily life in the real world can be quite stressful - this may well be a prime indicator of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder - whether it be a vietnam era vet or rape victim.

Continue reading "The Perception of the Victim" »

September 20, 2008

Perception of an Alcohol Drinker

A quick item for your consideration, dear reader:

Would it be possible that many common items of wisdom are in fact a 'projection', en masse, of regular drinkers?

Certainly no one will challenge the connection between alcohol use and domestic violence, bt consider also these possible examples:

Accusations of criminally violent behavior against Pot Smokers

A supervisor 'needing' to discipline a worker who may actually more qualified than him, or her, self.

An American Financial professional foreclosing on an American Worker's house

Equal Pay for Equal Work - Means Equal Justice

I've written a bit about the supposed 'domestic violence' expert working for Christine Gregoire, hired during her tenure as AG, and, also, on her first gubernatorial campaign.

I don't have anything against Ms. Parisien, however, for me, she is a good 'random' example of the legacy of Gregoire in this State. She may well have never done anything "illegal", but she, in my mind, does meet the standard of an abuser, as she, and her, cohorts, would apply to a male, especially one just a bit younger. I don't like that standard, but it is the law. Personally I do think that if it can be proved, that should be grounds for immediate termination.

But this post is about equal pay.

Continue reading "Equal Pay for Equal Work - Means Equal Justice" »

21st Century Mistakes

As the reality of our current financial system begins to dawn on American's I've become aware of a 'mistake' in the economic numbers for our State - we too may already be, "in the shit".

The story, as it's been vaguely reported to me by a credible source, is that the usual summer layoffs from the school system were not reported. This has resulted in 'seasonally adjusted' numbers in the most recent reports that don't include the offsetting regular drop!

I'm not going to accuse anyone of intentional misreporting based on the information I have so far, but it sure seems to happen a lot around election issues in King County and the State.

Continue reading "21st Century Mistakes" »

September 24, 2008

Back to the School with the BMOC - Bill Gates, Sr

Does the de facto leader of this board look like he is up for 'class'?

Though he did pay up for his share of the Bill Gates Law School, I am personally not convinced his accounts are up to date - nor without retaliation against his 'collectors'.

The quick bio of this guy, as this lay observer has been able to determine, is that he was the family law/divorce lawyer for Jack Abramoff's firm, Preston Gates and Ellis. I'm guessing that his active board wife, the deceased Mary Gates, got him a fair number of his clients.

Mary Gates was on the national United Way Board, how Jr. got his IBM contract, a deal that didn't work all that well for IBM. One has to wonder if that relationship used senior's legal strategies in order to gain as much as possible.

IBM, karma-wise, did have something coming to them -as a Black S. African tracked by their apartheid legal computer system would tell you.

Two questions for you, my friends,

Is the legal profession's use of computer's any better than S. Africa's apartheid era system?

Is Bill Gates, Sr, any better for the campust football 'stars' who were committing rape with the implicit approval of the administration, circa his appointment to the Regents?

What the Stranger Said....

Stranger has a great clip from YouTube on Rep Marcy Kaptur, D-Ohio (Toledo)

Kaptur on Federal Response

Basically she is calling for criminal prosecutions, where warranted, and confiscation of assets.

FWIW, that's really the only option we have.

Curiously, she suggests going back as far as 15 years - a time frame similar to one that I'd use in Washington State for not unrelated problems.

Personally I think we should also look for civil recovery of assets, though we do need to be very careful about legal standards and precendents in such 'property rights' matters.

October 7, 2008

Main Street - Metropolitan Seattle aka 'Nickelsville'


Main Street in Metropolitan Puget Sound, Metropolitan Seattle, as 'they' would prefer is no longer 3rd Avenue. Main Street in this city-region is now I-5 or 405, with the various malls strong along it's length as our new 'main' street businesses.

The folks at Sound Transit would like to make main street for this region their light rail system, and, though I'm currently an opponent (for financial and legal reasons) they do have a shot at it. Given the current people in charge this is a very scary thing.

Sound Transit is currently controlled by the law firm of Foster Pepper Shefelman. I testified at a recent meeting about the financial and legal practices of this firm, given the recent failure of another institution they control, Washington Mutual Bank. In addition I also pointed out a specific example of managerial ommission in Tacoma/Pierce County the bike trail crossing of Pacific Avenue at the Sounder location, as per the GMA mandated Tacoma Comp Plan under employee Chris Larson.

A telling quote from FPS senior Partner Judy Runstad, former land use czaress at the City of Seatte, from a Jean Godden column in 2001. (Godden and Runstad share hair stylists, as well as money from FPS and hubby Jon Runstad)

Continue reading "Main Street - Metropolitan Seattle aka 'Nickelsville'" »

October 8, 2008

Hey Barack!

As you are continuing to forumulate your response to the bankruptcy of Wall Street please consider the Washington State auditor, Brian Sonntag.

Mr. Sonntag has been an exceptionally talented, forward looking steward of the public's assets in this State. At my preliminary look he received more votes than anyone in our last primary and he received an even bigger endorsement of his leadership when the citizens of this State gave him the powers of 'performance audit' of state and local agencies.

This guy is a total winner and deserving of a high profile seat, perhaps not treasurer, but perhaps the SEC, if not some sort of governmental watchdog role.

Excuse me, Mr. McCain

As you consider your possible cabinet members in these final days of the campaign please consider our Attorney General, Rob McKenna. Besides being your ranking supporter in the State he is also exceptionally well qualified for the sort of leadership you bring to our Nation.

Certainly he should be candidate for the US Attorney General seat, perhaps something else.

One caveat though, we'd like him back as Governor or Senator. Of course he's pretty much running the State already, quite to the chagrin of current governor Christine Gregoire. It doesn't hurt that he's got a few Democratic friends, including the State Auditor, Brian Sonntag.

Main Street - Madrona, Seattle, Washington

Main Street Madrona - Cafe Verite & architect Marty Leibowitz's new multi-family building

The Madrona neighborhood of Seattle is not the richest, though some of its residents certainly are. The neighborhood is, in my opinion, the very best in the City. I am of course biased. I'm prompted to write this by a recent piece in Crosscut, by Knute Berger, talking of history in Seattle and the Mount Baker neighborhood, where he grew up.

Mt. Baker is one of Seattle's finest neighborhoods, but it is perhaps a bit of a 'show' horse. Madrona, to the north, is perhaps Seattle's best example of a 'work' horse neighborhood. At the end of the bus line, above Lake Washington, the neighborhood straddles some of the finest waterview homes in the City as well as one of its historically poorest neighborhoods..

Though many casual observers would come to the quick conclusion that any growth in a neighborhood would be perceived as bad, it has happened here, and it was done well, including involvement by some folks living in the area.

On two full blocks there is a thriving business district, with offices, studios and 3 story residential developments. The transitional blocks adjoining have seen development, including an elementary school, but this is broken up by neighborhood parks as well.

Wilridge Winery and the Hi-Spot Cafe, North Madrona

Continue reading "Main Street - Madrona, Seattle, Washington" »

October 11, 2008

Emerald Property Rights, #1

Property rights are thought of as the domain of the local conservative battling his government for rights to develop environmentally protected land. In fact though it is simply an intellectual tool, not even a 'Motley' one, as in the title of this blog.

In economic theory ownership is defined as an ability to control a resource, of course including your own labor and brain. This may seem droll, but ability to 'control' a resource is, theoretically, supposed to be determined on your ability to manage the resource. Those that are not able to manage do not gain the resources to control anything more than themselves, if even that.

But it is not so simple as econ 101 would have us believe. For one, information is not free.Perhaps most importantly their are very definitely things that make government ownership of PARTIAL property rights desirable. The utility easement on your property is perhaps the simplest and most easily understood example of such a well defined partial transfer.

Emerald (Dollar) Antithesis, #6

Value in a nation's financial market's is dependent on the people who control that market's operation, including those that make their living dependent on same. If all can be trusted value will be high, and appropriate. If they cannot be trusted value will be low and undervalued.

This can be applied to today's financial crisis. We now have an accurate measure of the baby boomer generation. Although they may well proclaim their 'decency' it is in fact worth no more than a Ted Bundy charmer smile. Welcome to the hippie third world, proving that a shave and a shower does not make an honest man, or woman.

Tom Brokaw called the parent's of these folks the 'Greatest Generation' in his best selling book, and rightfully so. However not calling individuals to responsibility for their actions on the basis of the 'merit' of their parents is a major part of the problem. Corporate media and it's 'smile' is in part responsible for this situation.

Resolving it may well take the passing of the baton of their 'authority'. Not to mention that of the 'worst' generation's.

October 12, 2008

Ben Stein, on America

CBS's classic 'Sunday Morning' program had a spot-on commentary from the iconic Ben Stein. I just searched for it this A.M., but as of now it is not up.

Hopefully we will be hearing, and seeing, more of him.

October 13, 2008

Emerald Property Rights, #2

Some further explorations of important basics that they didn't tell you about econ 101....

Supply and Demand applies not only to specific products or an individual's labor. Supply and demand also effects the organization of our economy - the supply of a particular size and form of an organization is, theoretically, also subject to market forces.

Unfortunately due our current financial system this mechanism is not working - the determinant of success is not the ability to deliver a quality product, but rather one's complicity in the financial system that has just 'disproved' itself.

Back in the USSA, Inc.

Welcome to the United Socialist States of America, Inc.

My name is George Herbert Walker Bush, and the KGB's Mr. Putin has nothing on me. My boys. Jeb and George are gonna kick your ass, just like they did Saddaam's. If you want to do business with me, contact my chief corporate socialism officer, 'Hank' Paulson.

As to the rest of you, you may think you are free, but the lawyers own you all, thanks to your foolish implementation of legal standards associated with political correctness.

Stand up to me, and I'll kick you into the hell on earth I've built, the sidewalks of the homeless and labled as a level 3 sexual predator.

Go ahead, make my day,

October 14, 2008

It's all about Trust, Right?

The Spokane Spokesman Review notes a possible ten year sentence for an Auburn area business absconding with sales tax revenues.

The legal argument is that these funds are not actually in the possesion of the owner, rather held in 'trust' for the State.

FWIW, too bad corporate and State employees aren't held to the same standard for money they 'hold in trust' - whether it be there shareholders or, the actual taxpayer!

October 15, 2008

Emerald Property Rights, #3

Though the hypocrisy of the Bush dynasty and Hank Paulson cannot be denied, the current plan to take a partial ownership stake in the bailed out companies is appropriate.

The current plan is for these ownership rights to be without voting rights. At first glance this might seem wrong, but it probably does make sense. However, do recall that the 'management' right of termination, for cause, is always open to the government.

And, FWIW, one that still needs to exercised against firms that the government does not have a stake in.

I am sceptical of those that call for 'regulation' as the solution. Frankly, the way things are working now we get to choose between getting defrauded by Wall Street republicans or Capitol Hill regulators.

The final solution is to put the control of assets in the hands of those best able to manage them, for an appropriate mix of public and private benefit.

Sure, Dems and Republicans are going to disagree on exactly what that balance is, and that is exactly what domestic issues in electoral races should be about.

Continue reading "Emerald Property Rights, #3" »

October 17, 2008

Emerald Property Rights, #4

Another of the benefits in a 'property rights' approach to economics is in the management of a corporate organization.

Historically we have represented the interests of individual laborers through collective legal representation - and there is nothing fundamentally wrong with that. Of course it can also be divisive and counter-productive as the distribution of profits needs to be 'argued'.

The most common left wing answer to this is employee ownership, and this can work, but it is also not without problems - for one, how do you make the tough personnel decisions?

A mix though of salary and ownership has many, many benefits.

Continue reading "Emerald Property Rights, #4" »

October 19, 2008

Emerald Property Rights, #5 - 'X-Efficiency'

Corporate 'Welfare' is a term that resonates well with the best of our Country, right, left, and everyone else.

What is important is that our system, including completely private businesses and welfare organizations, as well as the ubiquotous american corporation works in the way that best makes sense.

A property rights way of looking at these questions work well, just so long as everyone involved recognizes the need for both pure public rights and pure private ones, as well as the corporate mix.

'X-efficiency' is a term used for talking about the unmeasurable, the particular value of the organizational management practices of an organization. The price of labor, the price of land, the price of inputs, service or physical can all be handled by an accountant, as well as reported to a government economist.

Our system and it's over-reliance on national institutions, has problems. Sure, there is a need for large national corporations. Washington State's Boeing is among the top of that list, as to are our automobile manufacturers. These are necessary evils and they require federal regulation.

However there are many businesses where largeness is bad - perhaps first among them the community coffeeshop (which, btw, is where this blog is mostly written).

Subsidizing a bad organization means that failure is perpetuated, not mitigated. Right now, those failures are at the national level, and we need to bring much, but not all, of the property rights in our system back to the local level.

Will there be more 'failures'? You betcha. Will there also be successes that we can all learn from and emulate? I sure hope so!

October 23, 2008

Equal Justice, for Justice

Taxation, under U.S. laws, is definitely not 'equal'. We like to see ourselves as a 'progressive' nation, helping out those that are less well off through our tax system. But if we step back and take a good look at this, is it really true?

Consider our civil justice system. From the same measure we apply to taxation is 'law' regressive or progressive?

Take another step back. Ask yourself this, considering everything under the control of law, taxes, civil courts, criminal courts, human resources, politicians, etc do we actually live in a progressive society or a massively regressive one?

Now, add the fourth dimension to your perspective, time.

Have we, since the 1960's, become a more just society? Or, perhaps have we become, in terms of our 'law', a third world country?

October 24, 2008

Is your Government threatening you?

Law is fairly clear about self defense.

So too is our constitution about the tools available to us to defend ourselves against government. We are guaranteed the right to petition for redress, and the first and second ammendments of the constitution make due process clear.

That standard of what constitutes a threat from a government against an individual citizen must be high, and, bloody hopefully, it should be as narrow as possible.

But, exactly what is that standard, that is my question for you.

'Dead Pool' on Wall Street this Morning?

The futures market was predicting a black October Friday today - basically short sellers attempting to drive the market down yet further - however the market, though still down, is not crashing.

Recently I reviewed an Eastwood movie called 'Dead Pool' - the plot involving a group of successful individuals doing a sort of office pool on who could pick the most names who would die before 12 months was out.

Short selling on Wall Street is a bit like that, and definitely a dark game. But, as Eastwood's character Dirty Harry noted in the movie, sometimes they even come after you - by being a short seller you can make yourself a target of same...

October 25, 2008

Emerald Property Rights #7 - Who decides the public interest?

Sure, individual and company property rights are easy to understand, even if we are doing a piss poor job at supporting them with our financial system.

Much more difficult are public tools - ones that belong to all of us, over whatever span they may reach.

I'd argue the public system is as broken as the private one - in fact I think we've foisted the weaknesses of both systems upon each, rather that reaching for the best of the two worlds.

I won't claim to have the final word on this subject, but, one measure that is very important is what people are willing to do for free. If someone finds something worth working for without compensation, it is likely a good endeavor.

This brings up the concept of matching private donations with public, and, this, too, is part of the solution.

October 27, 2008

Economic Justice

Governor Gregoire and her generation have built their authority not absent any technical or organizational ability.

However, that ability is shielded from full accountability by the law, as her generation has made it. Among the 'tools' of that law is the ability to characterize a citizen or business person's questioning of government as 'harrassment'.

Though 'they' would have you believe that such an accusation is to prevent violence, it is actually a direct threat against the citizen - in fact, a directive that corporate and governmental organizations actually harrass the citizen business person - until they are bankrupt, until they die in the gutter.

Though I'm definitely a critic of Gregoire and crew for this legal scam taking us directly to the third world.I am not going to challenge that process.

We do need to regulate trhis economic punishement and make sure it is not abused, exactly as above. The best way to accomplish that regulation is to send those individual practictioners of this abuse to this hell on earth they have so righteously and criminally created.

If there are any fine points to be worked out as to what exactly defines that hell, well, let them argue the details. It is, as they say, 'a free country'.

Or so I hope.

A Public Pinging of the Plumber

The Columbus (Ohio) Dispatch has an interesting story about State computers being recently used to access the records of 15 minute famous 'Joe the Plumber'.

Story

According to the published report someone in the AG's office, a child support agency, and the Toledo Police Department accessed these records, all without 'cause'.

Methinks this might say more about these employees and their agencies than it does about the independent plumber.

November 2, 2008

The Meaning of American Leadership, 2008

Having greenbacks has sometimes been a good indicator of deserved authority. There are times though that it is exactly the opposite., and this, unfortunately, is one of them.

Now, I'm speaking in generalizations here, not pointing out specific individuals, like say, Henry Paulson, who seems to think that the only institutions to big to fail are those with whom he is associated, (including AIG a business Partner of Goldman Sachs)

But there are way, way to many examples these days where money is an indicator of abusive authority not earned toil - perhaps nowhere more so than in the boardrooms of corporate America and it's 'regulators'.

Real leadership doesn't make a grab for the cash as it runs for the door. It stays put and takes the risk associated with the reward.

Perhaps it is not coincidence that both Bush and the Democratic Congress are getting very close to single digit approval ratings. Perhaps either Obama or McCain can double that, or, perhaps, as McCain would put it, it is time to go 'Double Maverick'?

November 5, 2008

Bipartisan Nifong

We hear a lot about how law is supposed to be bi-partisan. But in practice, is it really? Or was the Duke LaCrosse player prosecutor just making an attempt to manipulate both sides of the aisle?

...not that there is a single example of such here in the Pacific NW....

November 11, 2008

Setting the Bar

Citing DOJ 'policy' Bush Appointed Manhattan District US Attorney Michael Garcia has refused to prosecute Eliot Spitzer for prostitution.

Well, FWIW, I sure hope bi-partisanship is defined differently under Obama... :-)

However, it is a pretty safe assumption that the 'Bar' of legal conduct is set about the same here in Washington State, under the direction of the King County Superior Court, and it's officers.

New York Times article.

Here's an idea - how about we only pay these folks minimum wage? Are they really worth any more than that?

November 24, 2008

Can Obama Beat City Hall?

Word has it Seattle's own Jim Diers was in Chicago the Saturday after the election for an 'Urban Strategy' session with Barack Obama. Hopefully this works out to be a good thing. His ideals are lofty, the idea he claims of making democracy stronger through neighborhood activist organizing.

Presumably the Diers/Obama connection is through Jesuit Greg Galluzzo who trained both Diers and Obama in community activism..

Continue reading "Can Obama Beat City Hall?" »

November 25, 2008

Macro Enronomics

Is the recent 700 Billion dollar Wall Street recue package nothing more than the moral and legal equivalent of a bailout of Enron? Certainly there are parallels - fraudulent paper transactions used to document value that did not exist - the only difference this time around is that the technique has been used across the board to support american corporatist finance - hence why I've called this piece 'Macro-Enronomics'

The term 'Enronomics' was first used in late 2001, and quickly spread, perhaps first at the Seattle Weekly under the pen of Eric Scigliano as well as on Jon Stewart's 'Daily Show' and George Stephanopoulos on ABC. Though rooted in pop culture this should perhaps be permanently associated with George W. Bush, much like H.W. Bush's term 'voodoo' economics has stuck to the supply side economic practices of Ronald Reagan.

It is quite true that we cannot afford to let our financial system melt down. But why, why in the world are we allowing these fraudsters to continue as leaders, let alone keep a dime of their ill-gotten gains or walk the streets.

We need to pay for the costs of this bailout, and the best way to do this is not higher taxes but to civilly confiscate the funds of the responsible beneficiaries of this scam - and make damn sure they never work in finance again - if ever make more than the minimum wage.

November 26, 2008

The Meaning of Authority in Washington State's King County

On Wall Street and Capitol Hill we are faced with a crisis of leadership and, unfortunately, our local 'main street' authorities are not without complicity in these practices. Most notably the criminal lobbying activities of Preston Gates Ellis (Microsoft's Law Firm) and the Enron like financial techniques of Washington Mutual under the control of the law firm of Foster Pepper Shefelman.

And, yeah, I'm suggesting that the corruption of corporate America is the responsibility of the legal profession - a la Elliott Spitzer in NYC and Alberto Gonzales in Washington D.C. - and, in the leadership position Washington Lawyers have taken, working as officers of the 'King County Courts'.

An illustrative case in point - the handling of the DUI case of Republican County Councilmember Jane Hague.

Continue reading "The Meaning of Authority in Washington State's King County" »

Innately Inferior - the 21st Century Definition of the word 'Nigger' under the Presidency of Barack Obama

Barack Obama has just announced his economic team, including the controversial former Clinton Treasury Secretary, Lawrence Summers.

The item of concern regards some out of context comments regarding the aptitude of women in math and sciences - concerning the possibility that the sexes were wired differently, not concluding it. This was taken negatively by the politically correct of Harvard, and by the public at large - see the comments on this recent piece.

But consider this - perhaps the mathematically illiterate female members of the Harvard, Massachusetts comunity have a genetic defect which predisposes them to accept the slanders of corrupt Republicans?

Nigger Newt Gingrich - that has a nice ring to it, no? Perhaps one even worthy of going down in the History books, the field where he was once a southern professor? Of course, I certainly hope than no one would even think the term 'nigger Nifong' is controversial at all...

One other thing for sure, anyone who can graduate from Harvard CAN'T blame their upbringing for their failings as a human being.

December 5, 2008

Speculating on the Appointment of US Attorney for Western Washington

With Obama still filling out his cabinet level appointments it will be awhile before the next US Attorney for Western Washington is selected. This, in my opinion, is a crucial appointment - the recent history has given us folks who are more interested in serving the legal community than the citizens of Western Washington.

I'm not current with the legal scene in Seattle these days, but still some speculation on some long standing names:

Jenny Durkan: At first glance Durkan would appear to be the top choice - long standing Democrat, counsel to Gregoire amd just about the right profile. Personally, I hope she doesn't pass the vetting. At some point I should do some work on her involvement in KC Elections, I have commented a bit on her before in the context of other pieces. Durkan, unfortunately, is very much part of the relationship network that has been a problem in this office in the past.

Continue reading "Speculating on the Appointment of US Attorney for Western Washington" »

December 6, 2008

Mike McKay, the Port of Seattle, and the History of the US Attorney of Western Washington

Former US Attorney Mike McKay has just made headlines locally in his Port funded audit of contracting practices, done concurrently with a Bush administration DOJ criminal investigation.

Seattle Times Story

I'm going to be critical of McKay, and draw inferences on problems in the office from his career, including those of his brother's tenure in the same position of the authority more recently, and famously. The trajectory of McKay's life may well be the best indicator of the degradation of the once fine tradition of moderate conservatism in this State, including his former boss King County Prosecutor Norm Maleng and former Governor/Evergreen College President Dan Evans.

McKay's moderate Republican credentials have a foundation worthy of pride.

Continue reading "Mike McKay, the Port of Seattle, and the History of the US Attorney of Western Washington" »

December 10, 2008

The Shock Doctrine

The Shock Doctrine
-The Rise of Disaster Capitalism

By Naomi Klein

2007

This U.S./Multinational economics book looks at conservative business practices from Pinochet to Iraq. It is definitely written to be supportive of acurrent nti-war efforts. The unintended relevance of the book, published just before the last election cycle, to this current crisis is quite large, and the basis of my recommendation.

Continue reading "The Shock Doctrine" »

Frank Chopp's Viaduct Proposal - Negotiating Genius?

The usual Downtown Seattle suspects are blasting at Frank Chopp's proposal for the Viaduct replacement, but, as usual, aren't coming up with the money for their preferred alternative. Chopp's ideas might be just the way to get them to put up or shut up.

Chief among these proponents is Tayloe Washburn.

Continue reading "Frank Chopp's Viaduct Proposal - Negotiating Genius?" »

December 12, 2008

Back to Seattle, Again

Being only 45 minutes from Seattle, and having lived there for fifteen years, I enjoy going back It seems my perspective changes for each visit and this immersion is a big part of the allure.

My purpose this day was a picture of a UW Law School Factory adjunct Professor, who also practices locally.

Continue reading "Back to Seattle, Again" »

December 18, 2008

Obama's Stimulus Conundrum

President elect Barack Obama must begin to address the economic situation quickly. However the most 'experienced' hands in this arena are the very source of the problem, on both the right and the left. These problems go to the very core of our capitalist democracy.

The corporate welfare left and the public asset thieves on the right are all currently salivating for an infusion of new funds, yet, curiously, it is exactly these same folks that have created the melt down in the economy. Funding these individuals is, in my opinion, guarantee the failure of America - likely within the decade.

With Bush II's attempted rescue of Wall Street under former Goldman Sachs CEO Henry Paulson the debate between FDR Keynsians (New Deal) and Reagan Friedmanites (Supply Siders) is over. This abusive alcohol fueled ideology has collapsed in a pile of corrupt public officials who treat the authority and importance of government like Ted Bundy treated his penis.

But this does not mean the right wing criticisms of government are wrong.

The sad story is that both sides are right, as you know, Washington D.C. is corrupt and it's sub 20% approval ratings - both Bush's Whitehouse and the Democratic legislature is ample evidence of America perceiving, and knowing, this fact.

But the failure of the Bush federal Republican crew does not say that there is not a role for the free market, and, in fact, in certain areas, including labor, it could atill work a whole lot better. The question though is the form of the balance between government and business. This is, and should be, a source of endless debate.

As case in point, consider the Western Washington Law firms of Foster Pepper Shefelman and the former firm of Preston Gates Ellis.

Continue reading "Obama's Stimulus Conundrum" »

The Devil and his Mistress - Mark Sidran and Anne Levinson

Seattle's Satan, Mark Sidran is leaving the Washington State Utilities and Transportation Commission - apparently to little notice by the media. By my quick survey his 12/16 press release only made the Daily Journal of Commerce, Bellingham Herald, and the online blog of the Tacoma Pierce County Tribune.

I speculated in the comments of that TNT post about Sidran's reasons for leaving - wondering if, perhaps, it was due some political ramifications from white collar criminal defense lawyer Mike McKay's rather duplicitious 'defense' of the Port's actions - masquerading his defense as an 'investigation'.

The reason for the concern is that Sidran, with some UTC influence over the Port, once worked for McKay, so, professionally their relationship is tight. Relationships are something to never underestimate in the legal profession where unspoken history often trumps any articulated rational legal analysis. I was taken to task for daring to so speculate in that comments section (linked above). Don't forget also that there is a history of problems associated with public dollars and white collar crime locally - including the assasination of US Attorney Thomas Wales. As a prominent white collar defense lawyer chances that the perpetrator is only one step removed from McKay are quite high. But I digress.


Continue reading "The Devil and his Mistress - Mark Sidran and Anne Levinson" »

December 22, 2008

Tricky Dick's Labor Pool

Mike Connell, IT guy for Karl Rove and numerous other Republican operations died in a suspicious plane crash after death threats and before testifying in an Ohio election case.

Curiously, his companies, among other things, was also involved in the US Attorney controversy that included Seattle area lawyer John McKay.

Besides the speculation on possible dirty play, the resume is interesting - FWIW, not all that different from the resume of Jack Abramoff, employee of the Seattle firm Preston, Gates, and Ellis.

December 23, 2008

Other People's Money, Other People's Lives

This phrase, other people's money, is resonating with me. As you know, much of this blog is dedicated to exploring various aspects of societal responsibilty, including fiscal. I'm also a legal critic believing that much of the current problem we face goes to the lack of responsibility in the bar, to, you guessed it, other people's money.

Kent Kammerer, convenor (sp?) of Seattle's most diverse (best) civic forum had a recent piece on Crosscut regarding money and leadership in the City of Seattle which brought this all together for me.

I used the term in my comment on this piece - and coincidentally, heard it on the radio just that same day by the author of a book by the same title, Nomi Prins, published in 2004. Though Ms. Prins rose to the top at Goldman Sachs she is not a fan of Wall Street's excesses and her tales remain relevant.

But why am I blaming the legal profession for the sins of the financiers?

Continue reading "Other People's Money, Other People's Lives" »

December 29, 2008

Washington Mutual and Downtown Seattle's Real Estate Market

Is Downtown Seattle still a healthy commercial real estate market? The Puget Sound Business Journal thought so back as recently as Friday, December 19.

But things can change quickly.

The next Tuesday, the 23rd, the online paper announced that JP Morgan was vacating over 700 thousand s.f. in downtown Seattle.

Curiously, the very next day, based on pre-WAMU meltdown statistics, Downtown became 'distressed', making a top ten list of worst off cities....

Perhaps it's just me, but I'm smelling a Pike/Pine Parking Garage style bailout play. Such a pity, these poor oppressed commercial real estate folks.

Washington Mutual and Wall Street's Financial Crisis

“We hope to do to this industry what Wal-Mart did to theirs, Starbucks did to theirs, Costco did to theirs and Lowe’s-Home Depot did to their industry. And I think if we’ve done our job, five years from now you’re not going to call us a bank.”

Kerry Killinger, CEO of Washington Mutual, 2003

This is the lead quote from the front page of yesterday's Sunday New York Times.

Understanding what happened here is important, both to the region and to the country.

Washington Mutual, the 'Law', and the 'business' of personal responsibility

It's amazing how much local business history remains a mystery. Consider the question of who actually controlled Washington Mutual. Was it the shareholders? - no. Was it CEO Kerry Killinger? - perhaps. Was it their law firm? - I think so.

That firm is Foster Pepper Shefelman, whom I've often railed against.

The law firm, like the bank, has been around for quite awhile. The 'Pepper' in the name is Louis Pepper who was actually CEO of the WAMU through the savings and loan crisis until Kerry Killinger took the reins in 1990.

Consider also Downtown Seattle's Washington Mutual Tower. Although you'd think a bank could afford to own its own headquarters, it does not. Instead it is owned by a company called Wright Runstad. That company is controlled by the couple Jon (who inheirited it) and his wife, Judy.

Guess what? Judy is a senior Partner at, drum roll please, Foster Pepper...

Even though there is a shareholder class action suit still going forward FPS and the other clients it controls (via marriage or otherwise) seem to be doing okay.

Heck, they were even able to keep nearly 200,000 s.f. out of the hands of the FDIC.

In the case of Washington Mutual Tower, owner Wright Runstad & Co. has worked out a deal in which JPMorgan assumed WaMu’s lease on 180,000 square feet of space and then immediately turned it back over to Wright Runstad, said Greg Johnson, president of Wright Runstad.

That move prevented the space from being turned over to the FDIC and allowed JPMorgan to continue to lease about 7,000 square feet in the tower that’s used for a WaMu branch. WaMu’s space was also 70 percent subleased, so it allowed those tenants to remain in the building without disruption, said Johnson.

From the Puget Sound Business Journal

To be honest, I don't completely understand how these deals work and what the FDIC's claims would be, but I bet it's interesting. And I'd also bet it's not the only such deal around this bank, it's law firm, and its other 'clients', many of them in real estate.

January 13, 2009

Washington State Legislature's Opening Day
- #?!@ $$$$ Budget

I was in Olympia yesterday afternoon testifying before the House Ways and Means Committee about the budget. I repeat my concerns here for your edification.

The attempt of Christine Gregoire to cut spending for Performance Audits in her submitted budget reflects long standing opposition to sound management of the public's financial resources by Gregoire. This started during her tenure as Attorney General including this specific issue. This is a problem and goes to larger practices within the practice of law in Washington State and this Country. The question here is who actually controls public funds and how government has been manipulated by 'them'.

Rather than cutting Performance Audits the State Legislature should use this office to guide many of its cuts.

Continue reading "Washington State Legislature's Opening Day
- #?!@ $$$$ Budget" »

January 15, 2009

A Brief Neighborhood Safety Interlude

I was doing some early morning grumbling about some unusual traffic on the neighborhood arterial a block from my house only to be quite surprised when cops starting pouring out of the unmarked vehicles in front of me.

My Tacoma neighborhood has some great homeowners and a lot of potential - it's Lincoln/McKinley on the ridge to the South of the Tacoma Dome. However the owner-occupiers are less than 50% of the population, the rest not exactly the best sorts of renters. Tacoma's been a dumping ground for recent prison releases and we're one of the areas that gets em big time - worse even are the folks that whose next stop is into jail. I've not even looked at the sex predator list, but certainly have heard the stories.

We're not all that far from UW-T, so hopefully those folks will start moving in here at some point - at the moment though the best renters by far are the illegals. I'm in a personal situation where renting would've been the right choice, but I'm not comfortable renting to this market.

On a related note, on my return from Seattle last Thursday there was a very aggressive semi-driver giving new meaning to the term 'class A' - tailgating me as if I was blocking him, though he had nowhere to go. The trailer was from New Century Transportation, the cab a rental from Ryder. I wrote down an identifier, but I'm not sure if it was the plate or trailer number - R54126, in case anyone does a web search. This was about 3:25p. I'd be happy to testify if his behavior results in any problems.

January 19, 2009

Obama and those who pander to Jeremiah Wright

Let us hope that we find god, not the devil, in the 'details' of this countrywide racial transformation symbolically manifesting itself today, the holiday celebrating the life of Martin Luther King, one day before the inauguration of Barack Obama..

Besides a racial change Obama's rise to power also marks a generational change of leadership. To see the current situation we need to see this also in the context of the accomplished dream of racial equality. The age of Jeremiah Wright and deep bitterness manifest in political abuses is also, hopefully, over.

Continue reading "Obama and those who pander to Jeremiah Wright" »

January 21, 2009

Harsh Reality in the Obama Age, #1

America, each and everyone of us, the Country as whole, and every one of its companies, IS BANKRUPT. Sure, some folks, the oligarchs, have cash sitting around, first off the republicans controlling TARP bailout funds and the oil companies. But is having cash in an economy that is in reality nothing more than a giant ponzi scheme a sign of merit?

I think not.

George Bush turned us into a socialist country, and to paraphrase Marx, we are now entering the 'Bankruptcy Trusteeship of the Proletariat' phase of world history.

Continue reading "Harsh Reality in the Obama Age, #1" »

February 5, 2009

Harsh Reality in the Obama Era, #4

In order to preserve business profitability many more jobs will be lost.

TARP and Stimulus funding will be used to support those in the 'echo chamber' of Washington D.C. and the executive board rooms of Corporate America, but nothing will be used to help you out.

Jobs will be outsourced overseas, if not filled with illegal immigrants, in a continuing desperate effort to support the excesses of the oligarchical lifestyle.

A few government jobs will be created. The primary responsibility of these 'public servants' will be to tell you how much of a loser you are and how it's time to be responsible for their failings. Most of the time these folks will be very professional and polite in how they do it, but you do run the risk of getting shot if you dare to stand up for yourself.

Though the Enron corporate scandal foretold these problems we have not learned our lessons yet - in fact our leadership is flagrantly flaunting their power.

February 8, 2009

Mr. Sims Goes to Washington

Ron Sims is no Jefferson Smith, the lead character from the 1939 Capra movie, 'Mr. Smith goes to Washington'. Sims may well be the administrative/stimulus official to make sure that Obama does not repeat the mistakes of boomer era executives, for example, Norm Rice.

Sims is a real human being, and a pragmatic one, making, what he believes, are honest decisions about weighing practicality with ideals. How he handles his new authority to further advance the idealistic in King County, at this moment in time, will show whether he has succumbed to the temptations and corruption of power or will rise to the constitutional responsibilities of his federal position.

Continue reading "Mr. Sims Goes to Washington" »

Tacoma/Pierce Bar goes to Seattle

Salvador Mungia is the President-elect of the Washington State Bar Association and he has weighed in on a local legal controversy in a manner that raises my hopes for the resolution of widespread corruption in the Seattle/King County Bar.

Continue reading "Tacoma/Pierce Bar goes to Seattle" »

Harsh Reality in the Obama Era, #5

You work for your corrupt lawyer, not he, or she, for you.

Sure, you benefit, but only by agreeing to be a party to the corruption.

And you'd better darn well believe that the Republican Tarp and the Obama Stimulus is only going to benefit the corrupt. Obama is only president because the Chicago Bar has certified that he is someone who can be manipulated through standard PC 'Best Management Practices'.

It's a tough question, are you going to own up to your failures or are you going to sell your soul to the devil in order to NOT be a responsible adult?

Are you a businessperdon who isn't fit to be an assistant manager at a fast food joint? Are you a public servant whose ideas are nothing but a white sheet for your acts of hate against the American public?

Consider the case of Enron. Did any of those lawyers get held accountable? Not a one, and it should've been a lifetime disbarrment for senior counsel as well as jail.

Did we fix the problem? Damn well we didn't, we only repeated the same type of complicated scam throughout corporate and financial America.

And we may well be going to hell for our sins, if we don't send those responsible there damn quick.

February 11, 2009

Amanda Knox - A Product of What?

Charles Mudede, from the Seattle Stranger, went to the University District to check out what folks who were actually aquainted with her thought.

The picture is a bit different from the sweet little daddy's girl stuff put out by the Seattle media and her family. - and, not surprisingly, consistent with the Italian evidence. I'm not saying she's guilty of murder, but she's darn well guilty of something.

I will also postulate, for your consideration, that Ms. Knox's behavior is the result of school and workplace practices which have basically reinvented the cycle of abuse as a best management practice. There are specific legal ways this was done, one of them was a legal standard that accounts holding a woman accountable for her actions as legally actionable harrassment.

This attitude spoiled Ms Kircher, thinking she could do whatever she wanted. Now, most folks are not going to end up in her situation, but that does not justify the practice.

Worse is the fact that these abusive school and workplace practices aren't the result of a sorry individual, they are a rationally constructed tool of corruption by the King County Bar to control and extort from government and corporations.

Isn't that right, Daddy?

February 12, 2009

Gil Kerlikowske - Drug Czar?

I won't come down either way with Kerlikowske, I was pretty much leaving the City as he was coming on board. However, the reasons I left are germane to a measurement of the man and I do have strong concerns, especially considering the history of abuse associated with our local DC 'lobbyists'.

Like Ron Sims, Kerlikowske has also successfully negotiated the minefield of Seattle gender politics. The question though is, at what cost?

Continue reading "Gil Kerlikowske - Drug Czar?" »

Norm Stamper - Interim Seattle Police Chief?

A quick suggestion for Greg Nickels - hire Norm Stamper as your interim Seattle Police Chief!

No way in the world does Stamper deserve even the slightest hint of stigma for what happened during the WTO riots. Protest is a right in this society and accomdating it in exactly the manner he, and Mayor Paul Schell, did was perfect.

The problem at the WTO protests was the failure of a multi-force security team to immediately address the troublemakers - deliberately allowing the situation to get out of hand so all participants could be smeared.

We should be ashamed that we allowed Seattle politics to be so easily manipulated by these 'WTO Types' - the same sorts of no-accounts who are responsible for Enron type problems and their current manifestation.

February 17, 2009

Harsh Reality in the Obama Era, #6

Your City's baby boomer power couple's marriage is based not on love, but power. This is power based on hate that advances itself by putting others down, it is a marriage made not in love and heaven but in hell for profit at the expense of others.

Local couples include Judy and Jon Runstad, Barbara Linde and Greg Canova, and perhaps Mayor Nickels and his wife, though I'm not sure about that one.

March 2, 2009

Legislating the Future - HB 1490

A state legislative bill, HB1490, which seeks to mandate growth around light rail stations has been quite controversial. Although largely symbolic the folks who win will have garnered political 'coup' - a strange practice in Seattle.

Mayor Nickels has come out opposed to the bill, but this is really just political posturing on his part - angling against Councilmember Sally Clark. Everything being equal I'd probably choose Nickels over Clark, but Nickels himself has enough baggage to make him unfit to serve. Clark does not yet have that baggage, but definitely has the potential to be even worse - as this issue would suggest.

Clark's support of this bill should be viewed in the context of her role in neighborhood planning - as staffer to Tina Podlodowski the 'Microsoftie' who took over the effort after outspending and defeating neighborhood candidates. Neighborhood planning is being fastracked for exactly the same neighborhoods that have been the subject of HB 1490 - enthusiasm for the effort is lacking, as documented in this article. including outright opposition from the official neighborhood. Perhaps the history of Ms. Clark and her crew has something to do with this?

Continue reading "Legislating the Future - HB 1490" »

Seattle Red Flag Alert

I spent my pre-teen years in Southern California, a half hour or so from the Beach, a favorite destination, especially during times of hurricane generated waves - 'Red Flag' weather.

I never learned to surf, but still being in the rough stuff body surfing was quite memorable.

Politics in Seattle, dominated by tax dependent 'businesses' (many owned on the Eastside) has such weather, whenever the hegemony gets close to being held accountable. After the second defeat of the Seattle Commons was one such time - which begat the whole Nordstrom Parking Garage thing. So too were the WTO riots, which may well have begat the assasination of US Attorney Thomas Wales.

BE CAREFUL, BUT NAIL AS MANY OF THESE SLIMY BASTARDS AS POSSIBLE. LET'S MAKE SURE THIS NEVER HAS TO HAPPEN FOR QUITE AWHILE.

March 30, 2009

A Point of Disagreement with the Mainstream Media

Mainstream media has made a big point about protecting the recipients of corporate corruption in New York City, most notably in the AIG bonus matter claiming these were contractually 'legal'.

I'm sorry, but regardless of what a corporate lawyer tells you is legal you are still responsible for your actions. These folks **chose** to actively participate in a fraud and profited from it greatly.

These are not people to respect, nor do they deserve a penny of all of their ill-gotten gains. Via civil means it is time to move these people and their families into the homeless shelter as quickly as possible.

If they are in fact talented and not just sophisticated thugs they should have no problem working there way back to a comfortable lifestyle, if not, so be it. There are certainly families in homeless shelters right now for far less of a mistake.

These corporate practices have to end - using justifications of political correctness to cover scams is no more than puting a white sheet on a KKK member - accusing those who would hold you responsible of sexual harrassment IS a sex crime.

A Point of Disagreement with Bill Gates, Senior

Bill Gates Senior recently wrote an op-ed in favor of an income tax for upper bracket individuals and companies.

This is a good idea, but coming from Gates it is kind of like Al Capone making a $50,000 donation to M.A.D.D. Gates has profited greatly from government revenues through his former legal practice. I would go so far as to say Preston Gates and Ellis dominance in this field manifested itself as a typical abusive control freak - some of the worst of public/private interaction.

Thanks to their corrupt lobbying practices in D.C. through Jack Abramoff the firm has quietly dissolved. Some of the private practice folks split off to form Dorsey and Whitney, while the remainder were aquired by Pittsburg based K&L Gates, now one of the nation's largest firms.

The passive aggressive politically correct tools PGE used to manipulate bureaucracies at the worst were as poltically motivated and degenerate as Michael Nifong's prosecution of the Duke Lacrosse team in North Carolina. Worse, they've used their success as leverage to bring these practices into the private sector, along with others.

No connections to Enron have been established yet but their long time practice in privately owned utilities makes them suspect. Involvement in other matters is not even a question. What he and his did to the University of Washington as regent is sufficient justification for the faculty of that institution to string him up in self defense.

Another favorite of Mr. Gates senior is an inheiritance tax - kind of a way of bragging about the success of his son, in kind of a back hand way. Unfortunately the only legacy Mr. Gates will leave to his son is his sexually motivated abusive corruption, a son who made a very bad choice as to who to hire as legal counsel.

Right pop?

April 1, 2009

Very Smart Junior, but are you Human?

I take offense at the New York City financiers and Washington D.C. regulators who cooked up the ripoffs of millions of investors and employees being portrayed as the best and the brightest. The fact that they now seek to continue their illegal activities via a ponzi scheme against my generation on the US Treasury is more than outrageous.

These folks may well have graduated in the upper portions of their Ivy League classes, but they have chosen to apply their intelligence to enrich themselves not by improving the world buy by stealing from it.

Continue reading "Very Smart Junior, but are you Human?" »

April 11, 2009

The 'N' Word, #3

Nim-by acronym; Not In My Back Yard n. A perjorative stereotype with some basis in reality but more often used by those unable to communicate outside of the controlled confines of a public or private corporation - nor able to design a project worthy of survival outside of same. (Ed Note:Abusive behavior does occur in neighborhood groups, curiously though it is most often public servants, usually acting outside of their lower middle roles that do so. The other common type is a victim seeking revenge, rightfully or wrongfully. Note also rhymes with Quimby, a synonym for 'N' word #2, 'Nickels')

June 8, 2009

Good People, Bad Law

I just caught a timely radio PSA with State Attorney General Rob McKenna and King County Sherrif Sue Rahr concerning High School graduation alcohol usage - a good subject, but with a bad conclusion.

The gist of their piece is to discourage parents from hosting events where alcohol is served. I couldn't disagree more - regardless of the law this is a very appropriate way to handle the situation, so long as the proper precautions are made - keeping car keys, etc.

Alcohol is a legal drug and having more mature people teach its use is crucial. Sure, when the drinking age was 18 there were problems at High Schools as a result, but this is not the same thing at all - consider the anthropological record, for one.

More to the point Rob, Sue, what about the Republicans in King County who never learned how manage the use of the drug responsibly - like, for example, Jane Hague and Norm Satterberg.

Right? What about them?

This enforcement effort comes across as nothing but disrespect for the law revisiting prohibition at a crucial demographic.

Law is not written in stone from Moses in the First Ammendment, it is living thing based on human judgement and the application thereof. Rahr and McKenna are exhibiting much less of this than the parents buying alcohol for their graduates.

Implicitly holding the average citizen to a different standard than members of the government only justifies DISRESPECT for authority.

Given the historical role of the Republican party in US Business it also raises the question - are these folks really competitive or just drug addicted gang banging and extorting thugs corrupting the law rather than making America strong?

June 9, 2009

Bernanke without Hanke

Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke, nominated to replace Allen Greenspan during the reign of Bush's Treasury chief, Hank Paulson, made historical precedent in a first ever broadcast interview on 60 Minutes Sunday night.

He hit his marks in his interview and did bring a calm reassuring message to the airwaves. I, for one though, am sceptical.

Perhaps his speechifying is nothing but a defensive move, a la Dick Cheney, someone definitely on the outs in D.C. and 'in' when it comes to media appearances.

To me the central point concerns accountability for bailing out certain firms - a point Bernanke did make - that folks should be held accountable, once the crisis is past.

We have yet to see that. Most tellingly Bernanke completely avoided the question of Hank Paulson and any mention of his firm Goldman Sachs, the Haliburton of the financial world.

Bernanke also restated the need to bail out firms that were 'too big to fail'. Quick action was needed, but breaking up mega firms is very often easy to do. Consider, for example, AIG. The arm that was involved in the sub-prime mortgage scams was completely different from the relatively healthy insurance operations - why not split those up?

It may well be the case that we are in for a short term recovery. I, for one, don't believe we've solved the problem, we've merely taking out yet another loan, this time on the US Treasury as opposed to our personal houses.

It all needs to be paid back, and the price of failure is still failure.

No one is above that law - the only question is how many innocent folks will pay in order to avoid the pain?

And, Mr. Bernanke, are you going to hold Hank Paulson accountable, or not?

June 29, 2009

Convicted Financier Bernard Madoff and the Jewish Community

Perceptions of Bernard Madoff as a member of the Jewish Committee at this particular moment are interesting. Certainly there is anti-semitism, but there is also condemnation from within the Jewish world as well.

I did a google search on the subject, perhaps most interesting was a story in the Huffington Post from an outsider about Madoff's exclusively Jewish Club in Palm Beach, Florida (December, 2008)- a retirement area for many wealthy New Yorkers.( And, perhaps as an example of the divine hand at work, also home to many of Madoff's victims.

Here's the google for 'Bernard Madoff Jewish Community', for some of the rest.

July 26, 2009

The Curious Case of the "Stupid" Americans

By now the whole case of the arrest of Harvard African Studies Professor Henry Lois Gates should have blown over - if it even had ever risen at all to the level of national attention. But it has not, and this is telling. Most revealing was Harvard grad President Barack Obama initially calling arresting officer James Crowley "stupid".

As comedian and commentator Jon Stewart noted, perhaps it was Obama who was stupid - not to mention Prof. Gates himself.

The Daily Show With Jon StewartMon - Thurs 11p / 10c
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If this were simply a matter of reverse racism without effect it would be easy to let this pass - that would be as appropriate as the dropping of charges against Mr. Gates by the Cambridge officials.

This case is not about race, but about class in America, it is about the elites of America calling anyone who dares to hold them to account "stupid" racists.

The sad fact is that the people who run this Country are smiley faced abusive alcoholics, the only difference between themselves and the stereotypical abusive trailer trash is the price of their booze, and the rest of their lifestyles - to you, me, and every honest, accountable American, born and unborn.

One thing for darn sure, the Cambridge PD understands this problem - and hopefully are setting an example for **every** officer in every department in this Country.

August 5, 2009

More on the Dome District -
Tacoma/Pierce News Tribune

Peter Callaghan has a great piece on the Sound Transit Berm through the Dome District of Tacoma. Instead of repeating myself I'll leave it to Peter to put his spin on matter. See also the piece in the Tacoma Weekly.

August 19, 2009

The Bankruptcy Trusteeship of the Proletariat

From January 11, 2009:

Harsh Reality in the Age of Obama, #1

August 21, 2009

Need any more be said?

In every stage of these Oppressions We have Petitioned for Redress in the most humble terms: Our repeated Petitions have been answered only by repeated injury. A Prince, whose character is thus marked by every act which may define a Tyrant, is unfit to be the ruler of a free people.

Judge Jack Nevin - A "Shocking" Resume?

You be the Judge.

September 15, 2009

World Trade Center - Too Big to Fail?

September 11 should stay as a day of reflection on the operation of our financial markets. As such I wonder if the massive removal of senior Financial professionals due the World Trade center disaster was a factor in the collapse of the financial markets last year?

Could it be that professional integrity was so concentrated in the industry that a single disaster removed the ability for the profession to self-regulate itself, to keep it's 'penis' in its pants?

Could be, but who knows?

October 9, 2009

A brief interlude of Responsibility

Army Officer Appointment Acceptance and Oath of Office

I (insert name), having been appointed a (insert rank) in the U.S. Army under the conditions indicated in this document, do accept such appointment and do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic, that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; that I take this obligation freely, without any mental reservation or purpose of evasion; and that I will well and faithfully discharge the duties of the office on which I am about to enter, so help me God.

And another moment of contemplation

From the Washington State Constitution, Article IV

SECTION 28 OATH OF JUDGES. Every judge of the supreme court, and every judge of a superior court shall, before entering upon the duties of his office, take and subscribe an oath that he will support the Constitution of the United States and the Constitution of the State of Washington, and will faithfully and impartially discharge the duties of judge to the best of his ability, which oath shall be filed in the office of the secretary of state.

October 11, 2009

Tom Wales - 8 years later

I'm remembering the assasination of Thomas Wales, assistant US Attorney for Western Washington, on October 11, 2001, one year after the World Trade Center bombing and just as George W. Bush appointed John McKay to be his new boss.

Liberal Wales was responsible for the prosecution of white collar crime in Western Washington and was becoming quite well known for his community work, including his leadership of the Queen Anne Community Council. As I recall he had been with the US Attorney's office for 11 years. According to this wikipedia article Wales was a roommate of Joseph Patrick Kennedy in prep school - not sure if it was before or after the assasination of Robert.

Press speculation has centered around the theory that it was a gun rights activist who shot Wales as he also led the State gun control group, Ceasefire.

There never has been a single identified suspect for this theory - and that Mr. McKay's older brother, Mike held the same seat during the Bush I term and is currently engaged in the business of white collar criminal defense. Also worth noting is the prevalence of criticism of inappropriate government funding of companies controlled by the Downtown Seattle legal establishment by Seattle neighborhood groups.

This is just speculation, but the criticism of the Seattle legal establishment being unable to find a killer most likely among its midst holds up in other areas as well.

November 23, 2009

Procedural Comments on the Tacoma I5 Environmental Impact Statement

Below are procedural comments on the I5 Tacoma HOV project, including a description of my own interests.

***********************************************************************************************************

Date: August 29, 2009

To: Carrie Berry, Tacoma HOV Environmental Coordinator

CC: Claudia Cornish, Communications Manager

RE: Tacoma/Pierce County HOV Program Supplemental Environmental Assessment

The following comments go to procedural issues concerning your current Tacoma HOV environmental review. My substantive comments will follow shortly.

I have received and preliminarily reviewed the IJR report for the Tacoma HOV projects. I had assumed that a report describing the WSDOT analyses direct access HOV ramps for Freighthouse Square and Downtown Tacoma would be included, apparently incorrectly.

Additionally appendix ‘E’, the Wetland and Stream assessment is missing from both the distributed CD and the website for the NEPA assessment. Lastly, please note that although I have lay qualifications read the environmental appendices associated with this project there is too much material to reasonably review in the time allotted.

Continue reading "Procedural Comments on the Tacoma I5 Environmental Impact Statement" »

Comments on the Interstate 5 HOV Tacoma Project

Below are my comments on the NEPA (National Environmental Policy Act) review of the current Tacoma I5 project, from August.

*************************************************************************************************

To: Carrie Berry, Environmental Manager I-5 HOV Team

CC: Multiple

Re: Tacoma I-5 HOV NEPA Comments

Some 2 years ago I was walking my dog near my residence, less than 2 blocks from this WSDOT project’s stretch of I-5, and noticed the almost natural grading suitable for a bike trail on the recently completed I-5 projects just to the South. As such I was inspired to restart my civic involvement starting with the analysis of the feasibility of a local connector bike trail at the periphery of I-5 between S. 38th Street and McKinley Avenue.

Continue reading "Comments on the Interstate 5 HOV Tacoma Project" »

January 6, 2010

Amanda Knox - A Curious Case of Circumstantial Coincidence

Washington Senator Maria Cantwell, whom I usually like, has come out in support of Amanda Knox, convicted of murdering the mixed race Meredith Kircher in Perugia, Italy. Admittedly much of the evidence is circumstantial, but, nonetheless there is a dead body.

Curious how the University of Washington finds white males guilty of harassment **without** evidence, a policy and management attitude that would also facilitate arrogant female prima donnas that think they are above accountability. Just saying, Senator Cantwell - nothing more than circumstantial evidence, right?

Personally, I'm still wondering about the rapes by black football team members that were overlooked by the former black Dean of Students, Ernest Morris.

Just saying Ms. Cantwell, perhaps you should get your priorities in order?

January 8, 2010

Mark Sidran's Archives

Curiously coincidental with the Pete Holmes takeover of the Seattle City Attorney's office is is the release of Mark Sidran's archives, holder of that office from 1990-2002.

All the more curious for me is the fact that I am indexed in these archives, only one of eight individuals including also Michele Malkin and John Hoff.

http://nwda-db.wsulibs.wsu.edu/nwda-search/fstyle.aspx?doc=WaSMAR4400_02.xml&t=k&q=tooley

February 14, 2010

Treason in the Judicial Branch and all Legal Practice?

There has been much said about the recent five vote Supreme Court decision equating corporations with persons - including accusing the Five Supremes who voted in favor of this decision of treason.

The Constitution sets explicitly high and narrow standards for this crime, noticeably different from English statute and common law. However, for evidence, the Constitution only requires two witnesses.

Continue reading "Treason in the Judicial Branch and all Legal Practice?" »

February 23, 2010

Obama and the Tea Party

George Will made an interesting observation on the ABC news program 'This Week' claiming "1/5th of Tea Party folks voted for Obama and 1/3 express support". I quoted this on Facebook and was promptly informed that Will is known to pull statistics out of his ass. As such, I decided to research further. That Facebook friend may well be right, and an analysis of the motivation for the apparent fiction is disturbing.

Here's the clip:

(commenters on the video repeat that question about Will's numbers, but Wikipedia does not.)

Even if this 'analysis' is completely false I do think it is safe to say that Independent Voters, who tilted strongly for Obama in the election, have largely lost favor with Obama. This would include myself, and I am certainly NOT a Palin/Tancredo tea bagger.

Continue reading "Obama and the Tea Party" »

April 23, 2010

American Law and Order

I am so proud of the American legal system. Why, without it, we'd be just another corrupt third world Country with the super rich and the very poor masses - with nothing to keep us all in line but reactionary right wing gangs roaming the countryside...

April 26, 2010

A 'Bull' Market?

The stock market is plugging along, showing consistent gains - even while the total number of foreclosures go up (don't forget to count all the mortgages delayed in the name of 'mitigation') and so does unemployment (don't forget all the folks dropping off the 'official' statistic).

Sure, Goldman Sachs has a minor civil action against them, but if we hadn't bailed them out they'd be rightly bankrupt, not the new owner of a shattered economy - with a stock market buoyed by TARP bailout funds.

Do we have a Bull Market now, or just another taxpayer financed 'Pump and Dump' scheme waiting for the next round of Pension Fund and individuals to sucker up?

Bull Market? How about a Bull**Shit** Market?

April 27, 2010

What's Up in Olympia

The 2010 Washington State Legislative session has wrapped up - with both the Governor and the Legislature curiously 'closing' government to observing eyes - the results of which are already obvious. These are trying times, but hiding from accountability solves nothing and makes many things worse.

To a larger point, what does this say about our Democratic Party, which controls the Governor's Office as well as both legislative houses?

Does it say this generation of leadership are hypocritical failures only concerned with their personal 'entitlements'? Does it say Christine Gregoire and her many associates in the practice of Law are nothing but Corporate lackeys for the right wing?

Certainly, in Washington State AND Washington D.C., there is the same amount of freedom for an individual under a corporate controlled government as their would be under the government alone - and perhaps even less!

May 27, 2010

The Bar and the Public, #2 - Tooley v. King County Prosecutor's Office, et al

Click through for the text of a Bar complaint against the King County (Seattle) Prosecutor's Office, received at the WSBA Office May 26th, at 10:25 A.M.

Continue reading "The Bar and the Public, #2 - Tooley v. King County Prosecutor's Office, et al" »

The Bar and The Public #1, Tooley v. US Attorney John McKay (2007)

In the Spring of 2007 my last 'regular' work, an independent contractor arrangement ended and I began exploring new career options as well as revisiting previous issues that led to the end of my first professional career.

Addressing many of these issues was a Washington State Bar complaint I filed against the disgraced Bush 2 US Attorney, John McKay, one of 8 nationwide in this well know incident. Though John McKay is an okay guy, I do believe that the Bush administration got this one right, probably coincidentally and the only one of the 8 to be so - for reasons more to do with Washington State legal practice rather than McKay's own character. (His brother Mike, the office holder under Bush 1, is a completely different story.)

Here's a link to the Press Release I issued - not all that long before I started this blog.

Download file

Whenever I get the chance I repeat the story about the assassinated Senior Attorney in that same office at the start of McKay's term, Thomas Wales.

Rand and Rachel, Racist?

I've been considering the Rachel Maddow interview of Rand Paul over the last week considerably perhaps THE issue of the moment in these changing times. Here's the interview, what looks like a 'racist' ambush to me, if you missed it.

Maddow and Paul

Much of the media picked up on this particular meme very quickly, including the New York Times who quite deliberately misled readers about specifically what was said.

Most of what I've read has been very polarized, and I think missed the crucial issues. On my Facebook page I'm fortunate enough to have some great folks who come to those issues from each direction, but with an open mind. If you have the time to read this through I think you'll get a better sense of this particular zeitgeist issue than you'll get from anywhere else.

Tooley's Facebook Discussion about racism and Rand Paul

(Click through for my personal conclusions.)

Continue reading "Rand and Rachel, Racist?" »

June 6, 2010

What Motivates Us?

Dan Pink prepares a great summary about what really motivates the creative class. It leans to the left a bit, but bases that argument on an MIT study. Just my cup of Tea!

FWIW, the effect documented here may well be what it takes to end a recession. Certainly learning to be happy with zero dollars is not a bad thing.

August 8, 2010

Cascade Land Conservancy Shows its Cards?

The Seattle Times profiles fiscal moderates getting attacked in Snohomish County in today's Sunday paper, including the Cascade Land Conservancy lawyer Nick Harper challenging Jean Berkey.

With this year's early primary on August 17th, this weekend is perhaps most important timing wise, and this story follows only Patty Murray's likely first drubbing of Dino Rossi, in the estimation of the Times management.

What's the big deal about the Cascade Land Conservancy? Well, they are certainly fostering an **image** of being a progressive organization, but in the end their motives are clear - the capture of as much public as money as possible through political machinations and abuse.

August 21, 2010

Opportunity Missed?

Last Tuesday, 8/17/2010, was the Washington State Primary - a crucial decision point in this crime of economic crisis, but not apparently in Washington State which did not 'turn the bums out'.

Washington is a largely Democratic State, and this makes dubious the common wisdom that the National Democrats will lose power come this November when final decisions are totaled and meanings therein prognosticated. The simple fact is this, voters are aware that the Republican party is the responsible party and in spite of the 'socialist' democrats are far likely to be much healthier under them than under a draconian Republican administration attacking its citizens to pay for its own corporate failings.

In the context of this gestalt comes an interesting op-ed piece by Seattle Port Commissioner Jack Creighton - 'Don't Waste a Good Crisis for Considering Consolidation of Municipal Services'. That's a strategic argument that makes apparent sense, and one that I'm supportive of, but consider the Port's own recent actions in the 'gestalt' of corporate and government accountability - being shown to have wasted hundreds of millions of public monies in crony contracting benefiting that particular establishment headquartered in Downtown Seattle.

This is exactly the governmental and corporate 'entitlement' behavior that has created the situation we are in - an authority that is both corrupt and bankrupt, though as of yet only profiting from their own 'mistakes' in the calculation of risk - financial and otherwise.

As such a counter-proposal
- how about we 'consolidate' the management of Downtown Seattle with the Port, including the assumption of adult financial overrun responsibility for the currently proposed 'Big Dig' project through Downtown?


August 28, 2010

Proposed for your Consideration; A Draft Manifesto

Respect for difference of opinion is the foundation of the Constitution, and what is sorely missing in America these days.

Much of the freedom in historical America has been through having a Western Frontier which allowed for the practice of those values, even if they were violated regularly in the Eastern Cities, and pre-civil rights South.

Even though that freedom existed only for northern and western white males, it did exist and the progress it produced was real.

It is a sad historical fact that the fruit that was the civil rights movement of the 60's coincided with the partisan political divisiveness of the Vietnam War and the final days of the frontier in the west. That tragic coincidence continued through the end of the last chapter of the frontier, the completion of the the oil pipeline in Alaska in 1977 and the Corporatist takeover of the economy by Reagan 80's investment bankers and lawyers. (FWIW, the folks running our economy now were sniffing coke at Studio 54 and fostering an continuing alcohol dependency at the time.)

The key to the success of the Libertarian Party, and the future of America is more than just a good PR strategy to counter the likes of the Rachel Maddow attack on Rand Paul on his primary victory in Kentucky early this summer, on civil rights grounds - it is also the Parties ability to include the left - i.e. non-violent anarchists (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anarchism_and_violence).

Consider this, what if the white male business America had embraced racial diversity without the need for a civil rights act in 1964?

Running to the government to protect your business is every bit as much an entitlement failure as the so-called 'welfare state'. The hard fact is that if you believe in the free market you **must** be okay with the fact that one of your employees will, one day, out compete you.

Relying on the Judicial Branch of government to create a barrier for your employees to compete by de facto creating a Corporatist Caste system in America contains every evil of Socialism, and more - witness today's America.

One thing this non-violent, limited government, Constitutional Anarchist believes in is the separation of powers among the branches - removing all 'officers of the court' from the legislative and executive branches of government, in as speedy a fashion as practical.

Since the 60's the left has evolved the law to deal with discriminatory abuse - this is a good thing, but misapplied under the direction of the courts. The cycle of abuse is a dangerous thing - in a 21st Century context the American Constitution is designed to prevent exactly that in its protections of individual rights.

There is nothing wrong with determining a persons economic value to society **in part** through governmental decree, including judicial findings of abusive behavior.

It is a true tragedy that it is the abused who becomes the abuser, and in a broader context this is what has happened in America, in the partisan employment spheres of the private right and the public left - under the control of our legal system.

And make no mistake, those individuals that make up our legal system are not victims tragically recreating a cycle, they are fully intelligent humans that have made a conscious choice to abuse via third party for their profit, and sexual control freak.

It is a fact of life that we are not all equal, for the Constitution, and America, to continue to evolve, survive, and succeed, we must do this on merit - and for no other reason.

There are many in right wing America that are using the economic situation they created in failing to realize the competitive economic global environment they operate in to create legions of new members to a financially disenfranchised class. The fact is that it is exactly these people, and these people only - who deserve a government determination of degeneracy - the worst of them no better than a homeless level 3 sex predator.

The word 'nigger' manifests a historical shame in America, never mind the attempts of those that have bought the Tea Party to re-instill racial politics. It is a word we should perhaps not let die - it is a hard fact of life that the human race does produce scum - we just need to make sure it is done justly.

And FWIW, our current legal system can't even manage it's own responsibilities, let along those of the other branches of government AND the entire corporatist economy.

The legal profession has created a monolith - that monolith is most certainly NOT comprised soley of scum, if though led by it. It is however bankrupt - with the responsibility lying along a continuation in direct reverse proportion to position.

There are those that would make it a crime in America today to be poor. But responsibility goes with authority, not the other way around, and if you aren't able to bear the same, you shouldn't be in the game.

Got a problem with that, Nigger?

October 19, 2010

Dr. Paul and the Racists

Dr. Ron Paul has his work cut out for him, attracting droves of the fanatic right wing. His mission here should be the same as it is with the rest of America, personal, individual, responsibility comes first.

Regardless of what the mainstream media tells you Dr. Paul is the real leader of the Tea Party, and one who is positively contributing to the civic dialogue. This October 9 speech to the Virginia Tea Party aptly demonstrates this.

The Ultimate Safety Net

Don't forget, the safety net of last resort is not the government, it is yourself.

November 22, 2010

Corporate, REPUBLICAN, Socialism?

In what now appears to be prophetic Ralph Nader penned a piece defining 'Corporate Socialism'. The article was originally published in 2002 in the Washington Post.

Here's an excerpt; point number one:

Consider the following assumptions of a capitalistic system:

1) Owners are supposed to control what they own. For a century, big business has split ownership (shareholders) from control, which is in the hands of the officers of the corporation and its rubber-stamp board of directors. Investors have been disenfranchised and told to sell their shares if they don't like the way management is running their business. Nowadays, with crooked accounting, inflated profits and self-dealing, it has proven difficult for even large investors to know the truth about their officious managers.

Here's the full text.

I was an active member of the Nader Campaign in 1996, about the same time as the more conservative local Seattle Commons issue - which some perceived as politically inconsistent. I would beg to disagree - and would hope that the best of the right and left would agree with above, and only the worst, disagree.

Ranger Shooting in Grand County, Utah

The shooting of a State Ranger in Grand County, Utah, last Friday night is a tragedy, but having just left Grand County on Wednesday let me add a bit more depth to the story.

Just the Friday night before I was camped in the Kane Creek Springs area near the San Juan County line and was mildly harassed, by a couple of 'rangers' - jurisdiction as yet unknown. It was at almost exactly ten p.m. and the first of two official vehicles made it a point of stopping on a curve at the main road with his lights pointed directly at me, just as I was exiting (somewhat awkardly, half-dressed and half-awake) to pee.

Continue reading "Ranger Shooting in Grand County, Utah" »

February 1, 2011

'Don't Ask, Don't Tell' and the Egyptian Revolution

The recent civic debate over the Clinton era policy of 'Don't Ask, Don't Tell' has been a curious matter to me, the recent Egyptian revolution prompting me to articulate my thoughts.

Curious point number one is that DADT is not itself a discriminatory policy per se - credit for Homosexual Discrimination goes to the mass media darling Ronald Reagan. DADT is in fact a compromise program that was always intended to lead to the appropriate end of this unconstitutional policy of discrimination.

Consider also this curious fact: if the policy was really 'Don't Ask, Don't Tell' why weren't folks who **asked** booted from the military....? After all, sexual privacy is a good thing, yes? And aren't sexual politics potentially very damaging to any organization?

Lastly, consider the curious fact that we are having a civil rights discussion about the right to participate in global **war**.

Continue reading "'Don't Ask, Don't Tell' and the Egyptian Revolution" »

February 8, 2011

Is Citizenship an Intellectual Property Right?

Having lived in Washington State for the past 25 years I've witnessed, from a distance, the emerging field of intellectual property rights law. (Curiously, this was coincident with the emergence of family law and the rise of women in the profession of legal practice.)

One particular critique I have of legal practice in this State is that the profession itself has taken control over the constitutional property rights of its citizenry, providing them and withholding them as it sees fit.

Continue reading "Is Citizenship an Intellectual Property Right?" »

'Socialism', Law and the "Span of Economic Control"

Do the public own the practice of the law or do they own us, our jobs, our families, and our individual souls? 'Span of Control'; analyzing who really controls what is a good tool to analyze this.

It is a rather curious fact that 'Law and Order' Republicans rely so much on court records to determine wages, all the more so in this intellectual information age. Is this socialism?

Continue reading "'Socialism', Law and the "Span of Economic Control"" »

February 17, 2011

A Few More Thoughts about 'Don't Ask, Don't Tell'

In a recent post analyzing some of the curious sexual politics behind the recent repeal of Ronald Reagan's policy of homosexual discrimination I touched on the desirability of avoiding all sexual politics in every workplace. Doing this would actually be the outcome of 'Don't Ask, Don't Tell' if it were literally enforced, and not merely a media spun euphemism for discrimination also attributed to Bill Clinton.

Consider, if you will, the sexual politics of those Clinton years - where the right wing disrupted the government and nearly overthrew it with nothing more than gossip about consensual sex - under the leadership of Southern History Professor Newt Gingrich as a newly anointed Speaker of the House.l

Continue reading "A Few More Thoughts about 'Don't Ask, Don't Tell'" »

February 22, 2011

Alaskan Way Viaduct
-Before the Growth Management Hearings Board of Washington State

Below the jump is a 'Petition For Review (PFR) to the Growth Management Hearings Board concerning the ramifications and processes of the Alaskan Way Viaduct.

The jurisdiction of this PFR extends the envelope of practice before the board, consistent with the law and appropriate to the circumstances. These circumstances include the alleged victimization of the petitioner by King County, its Courts and officers (public and private) and the State of Washington as an inappropriate growth management practice. As such, State Courts massive jurisdictional problems over the matters at hand.

Please note that petitioners academic, civic, and professional experience in these subjects is substantial, likely in a preponderance of measures exceeding that of Board members in depth and seniority. Board members Paegler and Earling have direct familiarity with this history and petitioner in fact ‘trained’ them in some regards during the professional emergence of Growth Management.

Lastly please note that there are substantive and procedural matters regarding this case that must remain confidential to the Board and Respondents.

Continue reading "Alaskan Way Viaduct
-Before the Growth Management Hearings Board of Washington State" »

March 7, 2011

Memo to King County Superior Court (Seattle) re: Prosecutor Dan Satterberg

Here's the memo:

Download file

Besides the Judges of the Seattle Superior Court, listed below the jump, concurrent conformed copies were delivered to the Office of the King County Executive, the Seattle City Attorney, U.S. District Court, Seattle, and members of the King County Council.

Continue reading "Memo to King County Superior Court (Seattle) re: Prosecutor Dan Satterberg" »

March 12, 2011

Legal **In**Consistentcy?

Come with me a second as I 'dig' a little deeper into Seattle politics.

Consider the recent wrangling over the need for a completed Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) before starting the construction on the mega-project Downtown Seattle Tunnel, replacing the earthquake vulnerable waterfront viaduct. In that battle the Seattle Council is pushing the project prior to the completion of normal public procedure, including

Then consider this piece, concerning the EIS for a permanent, self-managed, homeless encampment in the industrial area just south of downtown. In this issue the Council is taking the position that an EIS is needed - the only legal difference that I can see is that the Seattle Council thinks some people are above the law and others below it - something I personally don't see.

As. thankfully, does not Councilmember Licata, making this vote now 7-2.

Now, for an even 'bigger' dig!

April 7, 2011

The Law and Seattle's Alaskan Way Viaduct

The replacement of the Alaskan Way Viaduct is turning out to be as much a legacy project for its legal precedents as it is for whatever civic edifice rises in its place - major issues so far include the State's ability to ignore environmental law before issuing contracts and contrary to public vote and the separate 'lead' authority of the Council and Mayor in that context.

This Seattle Times article concerns a third player rising to 'lead' status - the Seattle City Attorney, Pete Holmes, who has now filed suit on behalf of the City without explicit authorization from either the Mayor or the Council.


Continue reading "The Law and Seattle's Alaskan Way Viaduct" »

April 17, 2011

An Open Letter to Interim Hampshire College President Marlene Gerber Fried and Board of Trustees Chair Sigmund Roos

25 years ago today marks the closed circuit tv suicide of Andrew Hermann, protesting the overly aggressive political correctness that was somehow also supposed to bring the school back to the mainstream of the Reagan era - as perhaps best documented in Richard Rushfield's book 'Don't Follow me I'm Lost'.

But is attacking young white males on the pretext of battling 'patriarchy' really politically correct feminism? Or is it really spoiled rotten white women providing scapegoats to the real crimes of old, white male abusers?

Continue reading "An Open Letter to Interim Hampshire College President Marlene Gerber Fried and Board of Trustees Chair Sigmund Roos" »

June 15, 2011

Commission on Judicial Conduct Complaint against Pierce District Judge Jack Nevin

I've had four 'anti-harassment' restraining orders placed against me, the first two by State of Washington employees retaliating against fully lawful and 'respectful' accountability complaints. The first of these was in 1989, no long after the first of these laws were passed.

Below the jump is my response to the last of these, in 2010, a complaint filed with the Commission on Judicial Conduct another such lawless retaliatory accusation coordinated by the Cascade Land Conservancy.

The biggest point of law is the inappropriateness of assigning 'malicious intent' via a civil process, by common law precedent a very difficult thing to do and made too easy through these otherwise appropriate legal reforms. Applying these statutes to constitutionally protected free speech is of course statutorily exempted and the practice of ignoring such law shameful, conspiratorial, extortionary, and criminal.

Most evil in these practices is the way they have been used to take control of land use and transportation planning, and, increasingly, private business via these abusive practices. Many of these practices have arisen in the social service legal ranks, most notably the large number of Attorneys hired by current Governor Christine Gregoire during her tenure as Attorney General. There is an evident, and unfortunate, legal practice of treating some as second class 'trash' before the law in unwritten practice that is neither criminal nor civil in nature. It is the case that many social service clients have been inappropriately subject to these stigma, and worse. But reinventing the cycle of abuse for political and financial control is a whole level of predatory behavior that exceeds that of even a level 3 sexual predator.

There is precedent for standing against this politically convenient abuse, the Duke LaCrosse Player case as handled by the Prosecutor Michael NiFong.

But the situation in Washington State is much worse. It appears, in fact, that this technique has been politically successful, and has also made major inroads into many larger corporate businesses in the state, not just academia, government, and non-profits.

It is sadly ironic and illustrative that many so-called feminists have become 'hate whores' for the man allowing their once righteous concerns to be misdirected and manipulated unto the next generation of younger white males.

Continue reading "Commission on Judicial Conduct Complaint against Pierce District Judge Jack Nevin" »

August 11, 2011

Growth Management and the Alaskan Way Viaduct

Back in February, I wrote about a 'supplemental' court filing I did to the Growth Management Hearings Board regarding the controversial 'Big Bore' tunnel replacement boondoggle.

This complaint got tied up in some rather absurd procedural problems, including, on my end, problems with my mail forwarding due my current transient status and the USPS procedures regarding same.

Best to move forward; follow the jump below to a recent re-filing of what is substantively the same case.

Continue reading "Growth Management and the Alaskan Way Viaduct" »

September 4, 2011

How 'Healthy' is the legal Profession?

I've recently started reading the Columbian editorial page - at least on subjects that hit my google alerts. Here is a great one, on the recent battle between Gregoire and McKenna on the subject of health insurance

Consider also recent legal opinions which give the Seattle Legislative Body the ability to override Executive order AND avoid accountability to the fiscal accountability requirements of the STATE legislative body.

Me thinks Mr. McKenna has a few more things to accomplish as AG regarding the sorry state of health Ms. Gregoire left the profession in, before he asks us for a promotion..

September 8, 2011

Law and Philosophy #1

When several villages are united in a single community, perfect and large enough to be nearly or quite self-sufficing, the state comes into existence, originating in the bare needs of life, and continuing in existence for the sake of a good life. And, therefore, if the earlier forms of society are natural, so is the state, for it is the end of them, and the completed nature is the end result of them. For what each thing is when fully developed, we call its nature, whether we are speaking of man, a horse, or a family. Besides, the final cause and end of a thing is the best and to be self-sufficing is the end and the best.

Hence it is evident that the state is a creation of nature, and that man is by nature a political animal.

- Aristotle (384-322 B.C.) The Politics, Book 1

September 27, 2011

Tooley v. Cascade Land Conservancy, et seq

Click through for the complaint, filed in Pierce Superior Court, September 13.

Continue reading "Tooley v. Cascade Land Conservancy, et seq" »

Demand for the Resignation of Washington Governor Christine Gregoire

Are you capable of stopping yourself Governor Gregoire? That is, of course, self-governance in the personal, and corporate, sense.

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(Click image to see full size)

October 6, 2011

Law and Philosophy, #3

"For as a citizen who violates the Civil Law for the sake of present utility, destroys that institution in which the perpetual utility of himself and his posterity is bound up; so too a people which violates the Laws of Nature and nations, beats down the bulwark of its own tranquility for future time...."

Hugo Grotius (one generation after Martin Luther), The Law of War and Peace (1625) addressing the subject of lawful relations of the emerging nation states.

October 17, 2011

Law and Philosophy, #4

But he who is unable to live in society, or who has no need because he is sufficient for himself, must be either a beast or a god; he is no part of a state. A social instinct is implanted in all men by nature, and yet he who first founded the state was the greatest of benefactors.

Aristotle, 384-322 B.C. The Politics, Book 1.

Occupy Eric Holder, #2

Congressman Jay Inslee is leaving his Washington D.C. Office to run for Governor in Washington State. Here, the former Prosecutor writes to Attorney General Holder regarding his performance in the 'prosecution' of the Mortgage crisis.

November 1, 2011

A Truly Scary Halloween

I spent Halloween in a County Jail, thanks to a bad Federal Warrant.

From the top, Eric Holder, to the bottom, is there anything more scary than the Department of Justice.

***UPDATE***

I have received correspondence from Durango Magistrate that documents and acknowledges, without taking responsibility for, the false arrest. Follow the jump to see the letter.

I'm still out $2,000 directly (plus more ancillary and punitive damages) as a result of this action - which all could've been avoided had they done their job, before, during, or after the arrest, as requested.

Perhaps most galling was the DOJ Assistant U.S. Attorney moving for contempt of court upon my assertion of my constitutional right of recourse, and than asserting illegal 'property rights' over Forest Service land in seeking to get me barred from same as an extension of this same sociopathic argument.

Continue reading "A Truly Scary Halloween" »

November 28, 2011

Utah and the Feds

Never mind Mitt Romney's strong bid for the Republican party's nomination to be the next U.S. President, but do consider these three court cases between Utah and the Federal Government.

Perhaps symbolically most important is a case regarding public access to Federal Lands - of which there is an awful lot in Utah. I've touched on this issue in another area of the State, but not far away.

With greater business implications, but also symbolically revealing of corporate business practices in America today, consider the Utah based anti-trust lawsuit against Microsoft, for the benefit of the Utah based Novell, once the leader in word processing (Word Perfect) and computer networking.

Lastly, there is a Federal action against Utah for its current immigration law.

As you might recall, I'm having my own battle with the Federal Government over the abusive handling of a camping ticket in SW Colorado, less than an hours drive from that State, and perhaps the heart of the Four Corners region.

Occupy Access to America's Public Resources and PROSECUTE THOSE THAT TRASH OR PREVENT THEIR USE!

December 19, 2011

UPDATE: Alaskan Way Viaduct Growth Management Act Challenge

My somewhat Quixotic battle against the Gregoire power machine continues with my very symbolic Growth Management Act challenge of the Alaskan Way Viaduct Replacement Project.

Two key issues which go to the edge of the Growth Management Hearing Board's authority concern the financial aspects of the Comprehensive planning. RCW 36.70a.120 concerns internal financial requirements. Perhaps even more important for the future of Growth Management is the regional coordination requirements, including fair financial dealings, as in RCW 36.70.100.

As you will recall, the State Legislature required the City of Seattle to cover any cost overruns. Numerous legal authorities have said this is unenforceable, including Rob McKenna and former King County Prosecutor Sally Bagshaw who infamously stated that "virtually every Attorney in Seattle" concurred. I argue, Pro Se, the contrary, extending the Growth Management Act to the full (and appropriate) limits of its authority.

Here's the original petition:

There were some interim pleadings, refining issues and the like that I believe are safe to omit. The Central Puget Sound GMHB's final response was in a PDF:

Download PDF File

Follow the jump to see my response, a 'MOTION FOR RECONSIDERATION'.

Continue reading "UPDATE: Alaskan Way Viaduct Growth Management Act Challenge" »

December 29, 2011

Is Ron Paul anti-gay?

Now leading the Republican pack in Iowa Ron Paul has become the focus of media scrutiny, most of which is focused on whether his anti-government approach equates to racism. Alex Jones summarizes these efforts nicely, and I, personally, am reminded of the Gingrich attacks against Bill Clinton in the 1990's.

As always attempting to stay one step ahead of the media machine Motley Tools asks, is Ron Paul anti-gay?

For the full story on this Sacha Baron Cohen (Borat) moment in the movie Bruno, see the full story here.

Seriously, I do believe this is an important subject for debate - and personally, I do believe that we need government involved in establishing basic protections such as in 'civil unions' - for everyone. Marriage should go further than these basic protections, but that is up to the couple themselves, and any church they choose, or choose not, to associate with...

Occupy Eric Holder, #3

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Occupy Portland is establishing itself as one of the smartest, and effective, mass 'occupy' movements - take note of their protest strategy, as many others have done, including with over 15,000 shares on FaceBook. The basic idea here is not one of resistance, but of a fluid response - appropriate for this rain soaked pinnacle of Pacific Northwest ecological urbanism.

And this fluid 'Occupy' response is now going exactly where it should, to the Courts.

After all, we are constitutionally guaranteed recourse against our government, no?

April 30, 2012

Rocky Mountain Roundtable, 2012

Utah Governor Gary Herbert hosted a 'Rocky Mountain Roundtable' with Governor Otter of Idaho and Mead of Wyoming, all Republicans, last Friday April 27. Designed to loosely build political support for Utah challenges of Federal regulations and land ownership the event was more of an extended free form press conference than anything, and in that, it succeeded.

Personally, I think there is a non-partisan balance point on Western Federal land issues, but it will be difficult to reach.

June 29, 2012

All Roads Lead to Healthcare: John Roberts and Obamacare...
'Socialism', Business risk, and the Rightful Role of Legal Practice

There are those that are saying Chief Justice John Roberts decision was really a duplicitous conservative strategy - defeating the liberal legal commerce clause argument and galvanizing political support in opposition to Obama, but I disagree.

Continue reading "All Roads Lead to Healthcare: John Roberts and Obamacare...
'Socialism', Business risk, and the Rightful Role of Legal Practice" »

August 17, 2012

Back to School with Julian Assange
An Open Letter to Swedish Studies Professor Christine Ingebritsen

In a curious case the husband of University of Washington Swedish Studies Christine Ingebritsen prosecuted me, in 1994, in a case of striking political similarity to that of the current Julian Assange controversy. I was an employee of the same County at the time as the Prosecutor, involved, through my studies as a graduate student at the UW, in the distribution of government records as part of a neighborhood education effort.

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Former Prosecutor Jim Rogers, now a King County Superior Court Judge (Seattle, Washington) and his wife, UW Jackson School Professor of Swedish Studies Christine Ingebritsen.

After many years of consideration, I've corresponded with Professor Ingebritsen about this conspiracy of abusive sexual politics, of which she is, possibly, an unwitting party. The letter is after the jump.

Continue reading "Back to School with Julian Assange
An Open Letter to Swedish Studies Professor Christine Ingebritsen" »

August 29, 2012

Secrets of Our Republican Corporate Masters, Revealed

The leadership 'strategy' of the Republican corporate elite is much simpler than you might imagine, simply put all they do is send their Democratic abusers on anyone, including independents like moi, who does not toe their political line.

In such a case, you have two choices - either hate the Democrats and start toeing the Republican Party line OR become one of their abused Democratic Pit Bulls. Doing otherwise only guarantees you a spot in America's corporate concentration camp, the streets of our big cities.

The cycle of abuse, racial and sexual, is a dangerous thing and our Corporate masters have pandered to the degenerate in order to divide and conquer. Though they think they are building a military industrial **empire**, they are, in fact, nothing but "Uber-Perverts" and the font of evil in today's modern world. Not just failures, but f***ing failures.

Christian religion is based on Jewish attempts to fulfill an ancient prophesy, that a 'Son of David' would defeat the Roman Empire. It is time for the Christians to stop being hypocritical spinners and get that job done. FWIW, as far as I'm concerned, I'd be okay with crucifying the lot of them, from 'Herrod' on down. And it shouldn't be all that hard - though our military is by far the toughest in the world the domestic arm of the machine is really nothing but pitiful and disgusting.

January 10, 2013

Chuck Hagel and the Anti-Semites

Secretary of Defense designate Chuck Hagel (R) has recently come under attack from certain individuals, unnamed here, for being an 'anti-semite' because of constructive statements regarding Israeli behavior.

Though many have commented on the inappropriateness of this, I do not think they go far enough. This sort of whining defense of unjustified military actions is about the most despicable behavior possible in today's world. These 'politically correct' murderers should show some adult responsibility, take their right to bear arms in hand, and blow their own heads off.

Failing that, how about we do a common law/equal justice legal action citing the case law of the Military Industrial Empire's crucifixion of the Jew, Jesus, and all involved?

Public Notice to Washington Governor-Elect Jay Inslee
and his Transition Committee

Civil rights of individuals are essential, no one will deny this; personally, I argue that they are very similar to one's sexual integrity - the violation of either civil or sexual rights, rape, are very comparable malicious acts.

Defending civil rights is a noble activity, but just like with sexual violence the victims of civil rights violations run a very high risk of becoming offenders themselves later in life.

This is what has happened in Washington State - to, I believe, the entire corporate body of the State itself, not to mention an increasing number of it's private members - corporate and individual.

Partisan politics, the legal profession, and leading members of the corporate leadership community, public and private, are responsible for this, in the final analysis. First among these are the former Attorney Generals Republican Rob McKenna and Democrat Christine Gregoire (a law school cohort of Ted Bundy) - not to mention the lawyer controlled Jack Abramoff conspiring Corporation, Microsoft and it's chief Counsel, Brad Smith - curiously selected by Washington D.C. refugee Jay Inslee to head his transition effort.

Continue reading "Public Notice to Washington Governor-Elect Jay Inslee
and his Transition Committee" »

February 2, 2013

Law and Philosophy, #5

Formerly the wealth of individuals constituted the public treasure; but now this is become the patrimony of private persons. The members of the commonwealth riot on the public spoils, and its strength is only the power of a few, and the licentiousness of the many.

Athens was possessed of the same number of forces, when she triumphed so gloriously, and whe with so much infamy she was enslaved.

.
.
.

The severity of punishments is fitter for despotic governments, whose principle is terror, than for a monarchy or a republic, whose spring is honor and virtue. In moderate governments, the love of one's country, shame, and the fear of blame, are restraining motives....

...Let us follow nature, who has given shame to man for his scourge; and let the heaviest part of the punishment be the infamy attending it.

But if there are some countries where shame is not a consequence of punishment, this must be owing to tyranny, which has inflicted the same penalties on villains and honest men.

-Baron de Montesquieu (1689-1755)
in 'The Spirit of Laws', 1748

March 11, 2013

MOTHERF#@%&R MOUNTAIN

Okay, in the winter this really is not a super tough climb - but given I'm knocking on 50 years of age, and well past 350 pounds in weight I ask you to pander to my delusions of toughness.

Regardless, this is a classic hike, especially in the Winter, the only sane time to visit this furnace of a biome. It climbs 3200 odd feed over 5.5 miles, one way. Unfortunately, the trip is also a good example of the failures of Federal Public Land Management so much in the news these days.

Yeah, there is a great trail head, even a bit overbuilt with railing and concrete parking blocks - but it is pretty much hidden - as sort of a private reserve only for the friends of the rangers. There is basically no signage out on Hwy 160 and what signage that is there is misleading. There are detailed interpretative displays, but none that give credit to the miners that built the trail and what mention of them is disrespectful of their entrepreneurial spirit, not to mention damn hard work.

March 13, 2013

Press Release Concerning my 10th Circuit Court of Appeals Case

As some of you may recall I currently have a self-represented appeal of a camping ticket I received in SW Colorado, during June of 2010. That case is now before the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals. I've recently put out a Press Release, click through for the text.

UPDATE: A decision was issued March 20, unfavorable - the 10th Circuit continuing to refuse to answer to my arguments, nor to take responsibility for the consequences of the lower court's failure. Here's the Court's decision: 10th Circuit Decision on Camping Ticket

Continue reading "Press Release Concerning my 10th Circuit Court of Appeals Case" »

March 26, 2013

THE MEXICAN DRUG WAR
A US 'Counter-Insurgency' against the American People?
A Crazy Allegation, Which Just Might be Right

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Like war in the Middle East, southern border violence has permeated the otherwise satiated and obese American mind. We have been presented a consistent set of perspectives, but is it really the truth?

Among the educated and still thinking citizenry criticism of American actions in the Middle East is well known, such as the moral hypocrisy of the state of Israel. Once the victims of a genocidal holocaust Israel has become the perpetrators of an identical atrocity against the Palestinian people.

In a recently released video the BBC's Arabic Desk, in conjunction with the Guardian website, details the counter-insurgency tactics of the US in Iraq. BBC and the Guardian allege a divide and conquer effort utilizing Shia militias to battle Sunni resistors, utilizing specialized strategies and personnel developed in El Salvador and Vietnam, including the infamous 'Death Squads'

My question for you: Is the American Military, and whomever actually controls it, is engaging in an ongoing relationship with the Drug Cartels of Mexico creating a holocaust zone of genocidal death on both sides of the US border?

Continue reading "THE MEXICAN DRUG WAR
A US 'Counter-Insurgency' against the American People?
A Crazy Allegation, Which Just Might be Right" »

April 22, 2013

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ON THE ROAD WEATHER REPORT: Moab, Utah

Breaking from a week plus of frequent rain, a glorious sunset over the slick-rock, transitioning to a waxing crescent moon peeking silver through sublime cumulus over glimmering pale Navajo sandstone.

Local conditions at the Behind the Rocks area just south of Moab: predominately motorized use, though mountain bikers and hikers are still present. Thanks to the addition of designated campsites on Utah State land chalk this area as a victory for the off-road crowd, but one also still suitable for non-motorized use, especially mid-week or off-peak. Some divisive 'redneck' attitudes were present among these users, but no worse than I've witnessed from mountain bikers, as of late. Sub-surface passive aggressiveness present, but was either challenge-able through conversation and/or other members of the party.

In the growing, popular Moab this is an area to focus more intensive use upon - improving some of the main access roads which would make hiking in the adjoining areas easier, likely also is additional space for more motorcycle/ATV/Jeep Trails. All in all has the potential to be a first class example of multiple use management.

Also, the near term forecast for wildflowers is excellent.

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A Tip of the Hat to Timothy DeChristopher

Congratulations to Utah Gas Lease activist Timothy DeChristopher on his release from Federal Prison, and on the documentary about the Story - including the jury precluded facts that the sale was in fact illegal AND that supporters of his actually came up with the money to fulfill the financial obligation. Below is the Amy Goodman interview on Democracy Now.

May 6, 2013

Bill Gates, On Education

TED, and PBS, have chosen Bill Gates as their lead speaker in the premiere of the video broadcast version of the iconic Technology, Education, and Design lecture series.

Having Bill Gates talk about education is like having Ted Bundy talk about women's rights, the prognosticators only revealing the core of their evil. Education for Bill Gates is like his company, not meant to empower creative individuals but to build monoliths of bureaucratic automatons.

Continue reading "Bill Gates, On Education" »

January 23, 2014

2014 SuperBOWL Broadcast Pronounciation Guide

The coincidence of Seattle and Denver appearing against each other on the 'kickoff' of historic Marijuana legalization in both of their respective home States has led to many a comment in today's social media universe. Such comments, tongue in cheek among friends, are fun - even if they are at the level of a Cheech and Chong bit - but not appropriate for broadcast TV and Radio.

Yet, still, the historical significance of this coincidence is the top piece of 'color' commentary for the entire mega-event.

As such, a suggestion - place an emphasis on the word 'BOWL' (as in smoke a bowl....) to whatever degree, style, and context you wish. Those in the know will catch your nuance, and those who might be offended will most likely miss the reference.

Here's to a great event, great coverage, and a great 2014!

January 31, 2014

The Curiouser Case of Amanda Knox

The infamous Washington State native, University of Washington student, Amanda Knox is in the news once again regarding the brutal murder of her BRITISH roommate Meredith Kercher., in Italy.

With the overturning of her appeal she now stands convicted of Murder, but as she has remained outside of Italy she is still free. This may well have been negotiated in advance, we shall see if Italy attempts to extradite her.

It is truly amazing how much of the legal pull in Seattle was used to free her defending the reputation of the premier State school - the same school that also produced Ted Bundy. Curiously, this is not the only international play by local law, the other was the Martin Pang Arson/Fireman Death case which involved an extradition in violation of existing agreements.

This unprecedented global legal presence was built upon the business transactions of the Boeing Corporation with just about every global government, a presence that remains even after the departure of Boeing Corporate for Chicago. These days the control of that presence lies first in the hands of Microsoft, and their legal Counsel -K&L Gates (Gates, Senior), a firm which most curiously, has a proclivity for female character assassination.

Curiouser and curiouser.

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