Oops, we did it again. More people mad at us in 2015! You know, if we really cared, we'd give some of the grumpiest folks a space to lash back at us. And... oh, look! We do care. A little. (Editor's note: We regret that the women we reached out to didn't respond. We blame the patriarchy.)
It's unfortunate that the level of political discourse in this town is so low that, in 10 months of campaigning, candidates never had more than two minutes to publicly state what we would do about affordable housing, homelessness, transportation, or other complicated issues, let alone actually debate them. The Stranger disliked me so much that it was personally vindictive and untruthful about me, was unwilling to acknowledge my leftist policy positions, and endorsed the establishment Sinderman candidate in my race. Geez, I had to take out ads in your rag just to get something on record with your readers. I regret The Stranger is not the (late) Bay Guardian and Dan Savage is not Tim Redmond.
I also regret that I didn't bring that bottle of tequila to the SECB interview and that Alex Zimmerman wasn't invited, since he would have likely called the SECB a bunch of fucking Nazis.
I regret that The Stranger undermines its support for the legalization of marijuana by profiting from advertising for marijuana delivery services that are clearly illegal under both state and federal law. The change that The Stranger's writers—and many of us in city government—worked for is put at risk by the proliferation of these delivery services. The stakes in this legalization experiment are as high as The Stranger staff in the late afternoon. If we make sure it works, the nation will follow.
Stranger publisher Tim Keck responds:
Your regret does not fall on deaf ears. But consider my position. Twenty years ago, when nobody had even heard of "legal marijuana," I had a steady stream of "contributions" from elected officials, and now I have to go after advertising. Tina Pod? Her "contributions" paid for both Josh Feit's wage AND my subzero freezer. Do you think my son's teeth got straight on their own? Nope, that would be the kind contribution from old Mark "Sid Vicious" Sidran. So, Tim, I will happily say "no" to any advertiser as long as you're willing to pick up the slack. PS: Thanks for the sweater. It fits weird but my wife is using it as a nightgown.
While my campaign team regrets the relative lack of District 4 coverage from The Stranger (I get it, a boring race in North Seattle that lacked drama beyond crew necks vs. V-necks), I am perfectly okay with you having only quoted me a minimal amount while I was allegedly under the influence.
Beyond that, I find it difficult to find regrets in The Stranger's coverage. The Stranger was the only citywide news outlet in Seattle to take District 4 seriously—even if you didn't give the race as many serious words as I'd have liked—and it had the most wide-ranging coverage of issues facing the people of Seattle. And, along with Natalie Brand and Dan Beekman, it did a great job of not sensationalizing everything.
I do regret the lack of Candidate Survivor. (Google the phrase "candidate survivor Tim Burgess" if you're wondering what I'm talking about.)
Also regrettable: Seattle suffering an unfortunate parting shot from Jean Godden denying 12 weeks of paid parental leave for city employees. Clearly it's time for a statewide paid parental leave plan for all Washington workers to be introduced in Olympia. With much of the obstructionism to any idea Kshama Sawant supports gone (seriously, Kshama—just publicly oppose things you really want), I look forward to a more boldly progressive and collaborative city government. I trust that in 2016, The Stranger (specifically Heidi, Sydney, Eli, and Ansel's arms) will continue to keep a watchful eye on the council.
My regret with The Stranger's coverage is that your lack of trust of city government is only related to certain parts of city government—like the Seattle Police Department, which you view as part of the conservative Republican establishment, though none exists in Seattle. Or like your view of the Seattle Department of Transportation, which you seem to think of as part of the progressive part of the Democratic Party, and therefore believe must be supported at all costs. Unfortunately for The Stranger, both of those departments are controlled by same group of elected officials. It is healthy to be skeptical about all parts of city government.
I regret The Stranger abandoned its usual skepticism for back-room deals in its reporting of the "Grand Bargain," a scheme in which large downtown developers pay a fee but provide no on-site affordable housing. (Meanwhile, small-scale builders elsewhere have to produce 6,000 units with extra construction costs and rent restrictions that are not offset by the value of the Grand Bargain's proposed upzones.)
This redistributive scheme is supported by the nonprofit sector that gets the fees after they're laundered at the city and dispersed through a costly bureaucratic process. What about hyping using the city's bonding authority to build on city-owned land. We use city credit for stadiums but not housing?
I regret that The Stranger's resident rat catchers, usually seen poking around rental properties, didn't catch on to the fact the Council Member Sally Bagshaw's tower-spacing proposal would protect million-dollar views for residents of the Escala at the expense of new housing downtown and that it came after she held a fundraiser in their rumpus room (ask Bagshaw about her downtown view).
I expect Mad Lib reporting from the Seattle Times, but I wish The Stranger would do more to turn its skepticism of crony capitalism on these sketchy saliva swaps going on downtown.
I regret that The Stranger chose to project their blind, ignorant, prejudicial loathing of tech workers onto me instead of finding any of the myriad reasons to dislike me on my own merits. I regret that the SECB mistook a 10-year-old dress shirt for something that cost "more than their wardrobe." [Eds: Actually, a 10-year-old dress shirt might still cost more than the SECB's collective wardrobe.] I additionally regret that The Stranger likely threw away a perfectly good box of Edible Arrangements chocolate-covered strawberries due to their inability to recognize sarcasm that is not their own. [Eds: Actually, we ate the whole thing. Thanks for sending, Gus!] I regret being blamed for gentrification after living for 15 years in my neighborhood by journalists who haven't lived in Seattle for a year. I regret The Stranger blaming me for failing to take seriously a race against a well-funded incumbent that I could never, ever have won.
I do not regret winning the Strangercrombie auction in 2009 and ad-bombing the Slog for a day. [Ed: That was you???]
I regret that over the course of a one-hour, seven-candidate pre-primary interview with The Stranger—which provided me with little time to share my progressive views and priorities—I somehow was seen as a "mansplainy white guy."
The "white guy" label ticked off my Mexican American mother and showed The Stranger hadn't read Line 1 of my bio.
And "mansplainy"? The SECB gave me only a few minutes to speak in our jam-packed interview (is "concise mansplainer" a thing?).
That's all. Anything longer would be... well... you know.