News for the Damned
• A man named David Ishii—not to be confused with a deceased bookseller of the same name—says he's running for mayor, making him the eighth candidate in the race. Among the reasons to love him, Ishii's campaign website features an animated elephant that bounds across the screen while farting a cloud that reads "Happy Valentine's Day." Plus, Ishii's platform includes "fighting crime, drugs, corruption, racketeering," says the self-described poet, who adds, "Round them all up."
• Mars Hill Church pastor Mark Driscoll—Seattle's biggest Jesus nut, who manages to give regular Jesus nuts a bad name—outdid himself this week. First, he accused President Obama of faking Christianity when he took the inaugural oath on a Bible; then, Driscoll took to Twitter, offering his followers a chance to win an iPad mini if they write about his book on Amazon. Christ, what an asshole.
• Last Tuesday marked the 40th anniversary of Roe v. Wade. To celebrate, Planned Parenthood hosted a forum with Sarah Weddington, the then-26-year-old attorney who argued the case before the Supreme Court. Reached by phone, Weddington shared her strategy for dealing with religious conservatives: "You know, I don't try with those people. There are some people who are so mired in their own religion, there's no argument you can make," she said.
• Citing rising sea levels, Seattle Public Utilities recently released a map predicting that by 2050, much of Harbor Island and South Park could be underwater. Good thing local politicians secured $130 million last year for rebuilding the South Park Bridge.
• Speaking of bridges, Republican state legislators have proposed a bill that would partially fund future transportation projects by selling the naming rights for state bridges, highways, and tunnels. You know, like the "Toyota Tacoma Narrows Bridge."
• It's been 25 months since the city's contract expired with the conservative Seattle Police Officers' Guild, which represents more than 1,250 officers. Negotiations are closed, so it's impossible to know for sure what the holdup is. Regardless, a city hall source says that renewing the union's contract is "a fuck of a long time" overdue.
• A person who works in city hall pointed out this week that, with rents skyrocketing in popular neighborhoods, "no one ever talks about" rent control in Seattle. "I didn't say that," the source quickly added.
• Seattle City Council member Tim Burgess says that if he's elected mayor, he'll fire police chief John Diaz. The Stranger encouraged mayoral candidates last month to pledge to fire Diaz, a pledge we think Mayor Mike McGinn should have made a long time ago.