Patrick McGrath
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Jun 28 Patrick McGrath commented on They Did It! Save KPLU Campaign Reaches Deal to Keep Station Independent.
Cool! I'm glad we won't be losing the local journalism. The jazz & blues on the other hand...oof. Let's take this opportunity to bring some more zest to those playlists, shall we?
Jun 16 Patrick McGrath commented on Did We Learn Anything From Seeing Footage of the SPU Shooting?.
We saw that it can be effective to fight back in an active shooter situation, and that the outcome would have been different if the shooter hadn't needed to pause to reload.
Jun 8 Patrick McGrath commented on Ijeoma Oluo on "Trickle-Down Progressivism".
What bugs me here as a comfortable middle-class liberal is not who's speaking up but the lack of basic organizing strategy: 1) Identify the objective (specifically--as in what law/policy/rule needs to change), 2) identify who affect that change, and 3) identify what it takes to secure the support of the person(s) who can affect the change. Until those questions are answered no good will come from screaming in the face of some poor guy at a Sanders rally.
Jun 1 Patrick McGrath commented on City Council Likely to Ban Rent Increases at Substandard Apartment Buildings.
@7: I'm sure we humans can devise a system that gets rent money into the hands of those who need it while avoiding the flaws of Section 8. Its problem is that it doesn't pay enough, and landlords are permitted to discriminate based on income source. Those would be better targets for legislation IMO.
Jun 1 Patrick McGrath commented on City Council Likely to Ban Rent Increases at Substandard Apartment Buildings.
@5: Exactly.

Housing vouchers are much better policy. Boost people up into a higher quality bracket while incentivizing maintenance and construction of new units. Of course there's a downside: the price tag means that if you're a certain Councilmember you wouldn't be able to tantalize your most vulnerable constituents with promises of a free lunch (don't worry, the next generation of poor folks will pick up the tab, plus interest).
Jun 1 Patrick McGrath commented on City Council Likely to Ban Rent Increases at Substandard Apartment Buildings.
So what happens when the apartment is low-rent to begin with and needs to raise prices to pay for the maintenance in question, or service the debt from an improvement loan? I'd bet that most of the truly affordable housing in this area is run by local owners who run on thin margins--exactly the types that this ordinance would hit the hardest. I don't suppose Sawant is proposing a new grant program to help with that.

That's the thing with rent control, it looks like a no-brainer and a free lunch (no public funds needed!) but in the long run it leads to all sorts of unintended consequences that hurt the people it purports to help. There are better ways to deal with this.
May 27 Patrick McGrath commented on As 23rd Ave. Construction Drags On, First Cup Coffee Closes Its Doors.
I've heard a lot of angst about this issue but not much in the way of realistic solutions. The City can't be expected to pay out to every business that claims damages each time it does a major infrastructure project -- nothing would get done. I suspect that's why they resisted for as long as they did, to avoid setting an unsustainable precedent.

A low-interest loan program with a long repayment period makes some sense. Or maybe some sort of civil construction insurance plan.

Could make for a good article, Stranger reporters.
May 18 Patrick McGrath commented on The Very Best of Lindy West! In Honor of Her Memoir Shrill Being Published Today!.
@2: Amen. Remember all the Fnarf vs. Will in Seattle? Good times.
May 6 Patrick McGrath commented on Why Cliff Mass Is a Very Dangerous Weatherperson.
Goldilocks my ass. Mass's logic about the relationship between weather systems and climate change only goes one direction: denial. Because it only can go in that direction. We don't have anywhere near the modeling sophistication to prove that individual weather events are directly caused by climatic trends. But weather trends can be demonstrated statistically. Just ask, you know, a climatologist.