Elections 2023 Mar 13, 2023 at 9:00 am

The Sugar to Sawant’s SAlt

They would also be the first to represent Uncut Gems extras on council. Coty Tarr



Meanwhile, here on Planet Earth, Kshama voted FOR the redevelopment of KeyArena into Climate Pledge Arena:

"The agreement passed 8-0. Councilmember Teresa Mosqueda was absent."



Anyone replacing Sawant will be golden because she was the worst god-awful council member we have ever had.

Ry, don’t try relating to Sawant or you will lose all respect and credibility with the voters of the city. She was a failure and this city needs to repair her damage.


Converting a disused battleship into living quarters of any kind will be hideously expensive, far, far more expensive than building equivalent housing on land. Battleships are made for trained able-bodied 18- to 40-year-olds to subsist aboard while they shoot at some other ships. They are not built for the general public to live comfortably. They won't meet any kind of ADA code, any kind of land-based building code, or for that matter, any kind of passenger ship code. They're also chock-full of hazardous materials that would have to be cleaned out.

This is an idea that sounds great on paper but is absolutely not feasible in practice.


What does “formerly bi-costal” mean?


I am starting to think this could be the year Goodspace Guy has a realistic shot. There are some wildly unqualified candidates in the running.


Ooh but non-binary so that’s worth my vote, right?


They are a fount of questionable ideas. They isn't ethnic enough to get elected in that district. Nonbinary, bi-coastal pasty white guy won't cut it.


@3 the fact the battleship idea is completely unfeasible is the reason the council will get behind it.


Sigh, yet another intersectional candidate that only has pie in the sky "ideas" but no real plan to actually be a city administrator. If you want to be an activist then be an activist. Don't use the city as your social justice petri dish. We're tired of it. Still waiting for the serious candidates to show up.


The identity politics in these races is beyond ridiculous.

Why not scrub every candidate of any identifying names, labels, and/or demographic info and instead label them with random letters with their CV and policy platform?

That way, after the election, it won’t be ‘they lost because they’re fill-in-the-blank-demographic’ it’ll be ‘they lost because they’re an idiot with batshit crazy ideas’


This kid needs to learn how arena naming rights work.


So this person is basing a floating housing proposal on the example of the Intrepid, which is a floating museum. And wants to use battleships, which were last built during World War 2, and have all been either scrapped or turned into memorials or museums.

This is like when Richard Lee used to run for stuff all the time, but more crazy. Why is The Stranger writing fawning candidate profiles of people who are totally unserious? Have all the editors been fired?


@12: “Why not scrub every candidate of any identifying names, labels, and/or demographic info and instead label them with random letters with their CV and policy platform?”

This is actually becoming more of a thing in corporate hiring. HR gives the hiring committee resumes stripped of all identifying information, so only the applicants’ work histories show: no college or university affiliation, no information on ethnicity, age, sexuality or gender identity. It protects the company from lawsuits (if the hiring committee never knew any of those personal details, they couldn’t have decided on those bases) and reduces the question to, who really is the best person for this job?


@17 So you’re saying we should treat our government like business? I’m guilty, I have voted for individuals because they were POC over the non-POC individuals. Sawant was one of those votes I gave and regret it to this day. I will most likely do it again until the politics is balanced to represent all the people, but if we removed that bias and acted more as a business we probably would have better laws as a society.


I am interested in seeing more from them, but I'm pretty skeptical of their ability to be effective. When I looked at their website, it had very few details about what they planned to do in office and this article doesn't give me a lot of confidence. I'd only be able to vote for them if they were able to present a clear, coherent, and relatively detailed plan about how they wanted to address some specific issue that was important to them. This is what I really appreciated about Alex Hudon's website. She put up a detailed platform about how she intends to address housing. It's pretty readable and not too long, it's not like she's literally drafting legislation, but it contains enough details that I am confident that she has though it through and will be able to make competent decisions (even if some of those decisions change if she gets in office and acquires more information and access to more resources - I do not expect people to always hold the exact same opinion, although I am wary of people acting in bad faith and blaming "changing circumstances" or some other vague nonesense like that).

That said, if the election were tomorrow I would be voting for Andrew Ashifou. While I appreciate Hudson's transparency and I like what her ideas are to address housing as far as they go, the 3 things her website talks about are transit, housing, and neighborhood vitality. These are not trivial issues, but there are glaring omissions. Ashifou's website talks about addressing community safety issues supportive programs and addressing the root causes of crime, and is cognizant of the fact that institutions have to earn our trust, they can't just expect to automatically did it because they're official. And while Hudson says something about green being good, Ashifou has the environment listed as an independent priority, not an add-on to other things.

I'm looking forward to hearing more from all 3 of these candidates in particular as the moths go by.


@18: Due to public-disclosure requirements, we can’t have anonymous or pseudonymous candidates, so we voters just need to try to ignore irrelevancies, and focus on who can best do the job we have on offer. In both the later 1990s and recently, Seattle had a City Council on which women and POC were over-represented. The ‘90s were great and recently it’s been a disaster, so I can’t make a case for any preferences in gender or color.

@4, @5, @8: How about a nonbinary-coastal candidate who’s 100% dedicated to Seattle? ;-)


“For the sake of representation, Armstrong hopes that the gayborhood will vote two queer candidates through the primary. And they hope to be one of those two.”

Wouldn’t it be “two of those three?”


Non binary huh. What is he? Analog?


Battleships are completely unsuited for housing. Even assuming that they, out of ignorance, mean some other large naval ship than a battleship, said large naval ship would not be suitable. A cruise ship would make a lot more sense but the upkeep on it would be prohibitive. Anything on the water is vastly more expensive than the equivalent on land.

Also, I doubt any court anywhere would uphold a city carbon tax on corporations, especially here where the state cap and trade law would almost surely pre-empt it.

This non-binary dilettante needs to do some serious learning about how things actually work if they want to be taken seriously.

Having said that, a moronic third-grader would do less damage than Sawant.


I think "Regardless of your good intentions or progressive ideals, why should anyone vote for a candidate whose political career seems like a backup option after failing to become a successful NYC actor?" would have been a valid question for Hannah to ask.



Reducing Ry Armstrong to the labeling of "drama kid," or "failing to become a successful NYC actor" @25 completely misses the mark! The truth is that many would be envious of Ry's acting accomplishments while in NYC. (Also, the entire NYC theatrical community, including Broadway, has been suffering and failing over the past few years due to the pandemic!)

If the author had bothered to dig a little deeper into Ry's background they might have discovered that Ry's achievements include noteworthy, not to mention newsworthy, fund-raising efforts for Broadway, Seattle theatre, fighting AIDS, and serving on the board of directors of the Seattle-based non-profit: Queer Global Society. Even the short time they have been back in Seattle, Ry continues to participate in charitable events.

On top of those achievements, Ry’s small business experience includes the formation of RYCO Theatricals and being CEO of an Indie music production company.

Ry’s ability to organize, fund-raise, delegate responsibility, and their ability to speak eloquently and bravely before an audience are all qualities you should want in a city government official; not to mention the passion they have for preserving and improving Seattle’s beautiful environment, and a sincere desire to place the needs of others before those of one’s self.


@26 lol at this candidate Ry defending himself in third person with sham accomplishments. If you did research into the candidate like they suggest you’d notice that they have consistently jumped from one project to another, background actor, low level producer, disgraced student body President, even realtor!?
Seems like they are constantly trying to do new things, perhaps because of failure? Perhaps lack of commitment? Whatever the reason, I’m not letting the city council seat go to someone that has a track record of not following through and irrationally inflating their past successes.


@27 I'm not Ry and they had nothing to do with my post. As someone who has worked in the entertainment industry, I've been very impressed by Ry's productions' quality and their ability to follow through with the projects that have been successfully completed. I'm not familiar with how Ry may have been 'disgraced,' but I wouldn't be surprised if what you are concerned about has something to do with their gender or sexual expression, the way some commenters have been going on about it.


@26 Anyone can form a non-profit and appoint themselves to the board. Based on the information available at the Secretary of States website, it looks like that’s exactly what Ry did, adding, I assume, their parents as other board members? Whatever this global society thing is, it doesn’t have a website and only has a bare bones Instagram account so I’m not sure it’s really worth qualifying as an accomplishment. At most it was a virtual film festival?

As for Ry’s disgraced past, it looks like they were asked to step down from their role as CWU student body president after a unanimous vote of no confidence. Ry refused to resign and tattled to the provost to put a stop to it and preserve CWU’s and Ry’s reputations alike. If you read through the CWU newspaper coverage from the time, the consensus from fellow student government participate seemed to be that Ry had a lot of big ideas and was always looking for ways to take credit for other’s success, but did very little work of their own.


@29 In reading through CWU newspaper articles, it's not clear that Ry "tattled to the provost," however, it does sound like the provost was extremely angry with the student board for breaking their own code of ethics. According to Ry's LinkedIn profile, "there was a large uprising amongst the Arts programs at CWU that were demanding they be treated the same as Athletics in terms of instituting a college wide "arts fee" for students. In support of this policy, I found myself running for and being elected to represent the student body at my school for one year. I was able to work with and get to know the President of the University along with the Washington State Governor's office in my time of service as President of the ASCWU. This was both a fulfilling and tumultuous time as I experienced my first bout of political and work place adversity toward the end of my tenure in the office."

Being a gay man myself, I know very well what it's like dealing with adversity in the workplace and trying to work with or supervise fellow employees who may have an aversion to your identity or politics. This is why LGBTQ+ representation (as well as advocating for the arts) is so important, particularly in city government where action can make a difference locally.


To be clear, I’m pro lgbtq+ representation in local government, and fortunately there are multiple queer candidates to choose from. The difference is, those candidates have platforms beyond “I’m queer, please elect me”.

Ry having “big ideas” about fixing a city they’ve only actually lived in for a couple months max judging from their Instagram, is not the same as having a thought out political platform. Ry literally has four sentences worth of policy on their website. It’s easy to walk through freeway park and say, “we need to fix the shelter problem in this city.” It’s another thing to understand the deeply rooted problems in this city and come up with actionable solutions. Whimsical ideas like “put unhoused people on an asbestos filled boat” are not enough.

Ry emphasizing their empathy and willingness to listen to their potential constituents is noting more than a guise to cover up the fact that they don’t know this city, as evidenced by their clear obsession with NYC, and that they don’t have any concrete solutions to its problems.


@31 perhaps you missed the background info where Ry grew up and lived in Seattle before moving to NYC? In fact, their album produced in NYC, "Crossroads: Ry Armstrong and Friends," (successfully completed and downloadable from multiple sources) provides all proceeds from the album being donated to Seattle’s 5th Avenue Theatre: Rising Star Project at 5th Avenue Theatre, The Northwest Choirs, as well as Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS.

Also, you seemed to have skipped over the part where: "One idea they would borrow from that town [NYC] is a right-to-shelter policy, born out of a landmark class action lawsuit brought to the City of New York on behalf of all homeless men in town.
Armstrong wouldn’t file a class action lawsuit; they would propose a policy that mandates that the City provide shelter to anyone who calls a hotline. If the City can’t swing it, then it would be on the hook for a fine, which would fund housing and homelessness services. Armstrong would propose a vacancy tax to pay for the additional shelter to fulfill this obligation. They also had a[n]...idea where landlords could opt out of the vacancy tax if they let the City assign an unhoused person to the unit."

"Willingness to listen to their potential constituents" is a very important starting point. As Ry is becoming so close to qualifying for the Primary ballot, their ideas will undoubtably become more refined as their campaign evolves.


@32 with each comment it becomes more and more obvious that you are the candidate Ry themselves and just trying to defend yourself from people calling out the truth. Honestly quite a hilarious thread to read through haha


@33 how wrong you are, and if you look through their list of donors its probably not too difficult to figure out who I am. Ry's campaign does need broad support, however, and as the candidate is about to qualify for the ballot, they will further demonstrate just how serious they are.

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