Is there anyone left in this town who we haven't pissed off yet? All year we report on neighborhood squabbles, the soap opera at City Hall, the so-depressing-it's-almost-comical mishaps at the Seattle Police Department, and more. We don't pull punches and, when our regrets issue comes around, they don't pull punches with us. Here's what they regret about The Stranger.
Republican King County Council member Jane Hague regrets our endorsement of her opponent, Richard Mitchell, who Hague beat in the November election.
I regret that Goldy spoiled a perfect record of epithet-spewing adjectives about me with a (mildly) kind of "atta girl" regarding my car-tab vote for Metro. I might have gotten another percentage point in my favor on Election Day!
Michael Ennis, transportation guru for the conservative Washington Policy Center, regrets that we're all gay (we're not) and we don't have families (huh?).
I'm surprised The Stranger asked for my opinion on the quality of their coverage this year. I am everything they hate. I am a Christian. I am a man married to a woman. I live in a suburb. I drive an SUV. I believe in free-market principles. I own a home with a yard. I believe I have the right to be successful. I can take care of myself. I go to church. I'm in the 99 percent but I want to be in the 1 percent. Public transit doesn't work for me. I own a firearm. I own stocks. I am a veteran. I have a family. I can pay my own way. I don't take over banks or march in protests. I wish people Merry Christmas. But since you seem to care about my opinion, I would say much of your coverage reflects an intolerant and judgmental attitude toward people who are different from you. Much of your local coverage is interesting and informative, but it is diminished because of the hypocrisy of narrow-mindedness and prejudice that are too often displayed in your stories.
Ian Finkenbinder, an Occupy Seattle activist, regrets that in The Stranger's 500 articles in print and online about the Occupy Wall Street movement, which were mostly news items and glowing support, critical pieces didn't parrot his preferred talking points.
From Dominic's histrionic characterization of our activists as stinky louts at the Town Hall panel to Eli's snide dismissal of our Black Friday action targeting Walmart (which is rich, as Christopher published a piece which basically reveals Walmart to be the devil not long after), The Stranger has demonstrated over and over that their focus, instead of reporting and thoughtful analysis, is to slam OS because we don't do exactly what they want every time.
Of course, they could just show up to General Assembly and propose actions their own damn selves, but that would require actually participating in something that might get them dirty (gasp!). [Eds. note: The Stranger actually joined and reported on over a dozen stinky general assemblies.]
Michael Wells, executive director of the Capitol Hill Chamber of Commerce, regrets that we didn't support his calls to eliminate benches in Cal Anderson Park where some homeless people like sitting.
I regret that The Stranger continues to mock community organizers who are trying to make their neighborhoods better. The Stranger's concept of a healthy, happy community is often at odds with what really makes neighborhoods livable. The Stranger's romantic attachment to crime and grime as a true urban experience is not a vision that I share for Capitol Hill. I also regret the distinct lack of an actual journalism education in the Stranger news department.
Finally, I regret that The Stranger referred to me as Michael "Bench Killer" Wells. Everyone on Capitol Hill knows that my actual nickname is "Kitten."
Seattle City Council member Jean Godden, who ran for office in 2003 on a platform of mocking Judy Nicastro for being too immature, regrets that The Stranger repeatedly noted how mature Godden had become at the age of 80.
I regret that The Stranger didn't support my successful reelection campaign, which means I now can't invite the writers to my 225th birthday party celebration. I also regret that Goldy has spent his entire writing "career," since unsuccessfully trying to brand Tim Eyman "a horse's ass," lambasting the editorial board of the Seattle Times. Heck, I could have put in a good word for him to get a job as an apprentice ad salesman at a real newspaper. I regret that Dominic was forced to decorate Joel Connelly's Christmas tree in a thinly veiled attempt to curry favor with the establishment. On the good side, he actually questioned whether it was evidence of "bias" that he contributed to a political candidate. And finally, I regret that the "pro-union" Stranger remains a bastion of nonunionized labor.
Michael Maddux, proud member of the 43rd District Democrats, seems to share our regret that a position such as "Representative to the King County Democratic Central Committee for the 43rd District Democrats" actually exists in a world already groaning with bullshit political bureaucracy. Maddux also regrets that when he ran for said position early in 2011, he accepted the Stranger Election Control Board's invitation to come in and debate his opponent, Will in Seattle, live on Stranger camera.
I am a man of few regrets. However, while I may be pompous, and wrong about many things—not quite "everything," as the Stranger Election Control Board contended in its January 18 endorsement of my opponent (or, more accurately, my opponent's turtleneck) in the hot, hot race for a spot on the King County Democratic Central Committee—I thoroughly regret the SECB, and ever having taken time out of my day to play in their little game.
For those who don't read Slog daily (and who the hell is that?), I ran against Will in Seattle to represent the 43rd District Democrats to the King County Democrats (boring, intraparty stuff that's more complicated than it should be).
While it was a learning experience about how to be a complete d-bag with a smartphone (the SECB dinged me for checking mine during their interview, which is fair), it also provided an opportunity to educate myself on transgender issues—and highlighted my complete and utter inability to articulate a thought while sober (as in when I spoke inelegantly about transgender people, even though, as I told the SECB, "I have plenty of transgender friends," and as a result was misunderstood to suggest to the SECB that being transgender is just a psychological problem).
However, I am happy to have provided entertainment in some fashion. Like watching a fucking train wreck. I also regret that Dominic Holden never pulled through on the martini promise. This in turn reminds me that I regret not having a drink in hand right now.
All of this bullshit said, I almost regret running even more. The complete clusterfuck of disorganization, saying to hell with the rules, and 100 percent lack of effectiveness of the King County Democrats makes those Tuesdays that I spend in Renton all the more pointless. If there is one thing that the current KCDCC proves, it is that legislative-district organizations are far superior. Especially the 43rd.
Joel Connelly, a columnist for Seattlepi.com, regrets the blasphemous whining that appears in our paper weekly.
I regret that Stranger editorial director Dan Savage did not enter the race for the Republican presidential nomination: A series of Dan Savage–Rick Santorum debates would have raised the speaking honorariums of both men. I further regret that Stranger news editor Dominic Holden did not use the phrase "batshit crazy" while moderating the debate between Seattle School Board candidates, since several qualified.
This article has been updated since its original publication.