The Big Takeaways from Washington's 2020 Primary


Facebook Fails to Dodge Washington State Campaign Finance Lawsuit

Washingtonians have a right to know who’s behind the ads seeking to influence their vote, reiterated Attorney General Bob Ferguson yesterday.
"Washingtonians have a right to know who’s behind the ads seeking to influence their vote," reiterated Attorney General Bob Ferguson yesterday. KAREN DUCEY / GETTY IMAGES

Back in April, which seems like ten years ago, Washington state sued Facebook for "repeatedly" and "openly" violating the state's transparency requirements that apply to political ads sold on Facebook.

This was the second time in two years that Washington state filed suit against Facebook for violating campaign finance law, in a case that originally grew out of reporting by The Stranger's Eli Sanders.

In the latest suit, Attorney General Bob Ferguson argued that Facebook has unabashedly continued to violate Washington law, which uniquely requires all political ad-sellers to make significant disclosures about who's paying for political ads that target state and local elections, as well as details about the reach of those ads.

Mark (Now-Worth-$100-Billon-Dollars) Zuckerberg's Facebook has claimed that the company is not even selling political ads in Washington state. The Stranger has searched Facebook's own ad library and found that to be untrue.

On Friday, a King County Superior Court judge denied Facebook’s attempt to dismiss Ferguson's latest campaign finance lawsuit. Ferguson celebrated the move.

“Today we defeated Facebook’s attempt to avoid its legal responsibility to Washington voters," Ferguson said on Friday. "Whether you’re a tech giant or a community newspaper, those who sell political ads must follow our campaign finance law. Washingtonians have a right to know who’s behind the ads seeking to influence their vote.”

In case you missed it, here's how we got here:

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Titus Is Unstreamable

Julie Taymors Titus was produced by Steven Bannon, cost $25 million dollars, and made just a few million at the box office.
Julie Taymor's Titus was produced by Steve Bannon, cost $25 million dollars, and made just a few million at the box office. Titus

Unstreamable is a weekly column that finds films and TV shows you can't watch on major streaming services in the United States. This week: Gore and tragedy in Titus, Allenian musical neuroses in Everyone Says I Love You, butt sex and melodrama in Making Love, and a horny performance in Amateur.

If you're thinking: "Unstreamable? In this pandemic?" Scarecrow Video offers DVD takeout and a great rental-by-mail service so you can safely rent rare DVDs during self-isolation. Click here to learn more about their program.

UK | Italy | USA, 1999, 162 minutes, Dir. Julie Taymor
Loved by Steve
Steve Bannon loves Titus Andronicus. That tells you what you need to know. CB
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We Know Too Much About Marijuana For It To Be Illegal

I won’t try to be subtle about this. When I say that we know too much about marijuana for it to be illegal, I am trying to make two points.

First and foremost, I am astonished that people in democratic countries that proclaim their commitment to individual rights at every possible occasion, have — for decades — accepted the legal argument that citizens should be arrested for using a plant because it might not be “harmless.”



The Seattle Police Department's Only Defense Right Now Is Propaganda

Can we get a fact-checker in here?
Can we get a fact-checker in here? David Ryder/Getty

The Seattle Police Department's public relations campaign to "reimagine policing" in Seattle boils down to a monochrome webpage and a stilted video. Neither the webpage nor the video offer a ~*detailed plan*~ for "re-envisioning public safety," and neither acknowledge the reasons the public is calling for change to come. They're merely the latest pieces of copaganda in SPD's growing misinformation campaign about policing in the city.

This nonsense comes after a summer of spin from SPD Chief Carmen Best and Mayor Jenny Durkan. Delivered by a multi-racial group of officers, the message in the "Bridging the Gap" video is meant to placate public concern and to distract from critiques of the department as the city considers serious cuts.

Let's dive in:

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Slog PM: Don't Drink Hand Sanitizer, Rove Exits The Hill, WAP WAP WAP

Buy local.

Cliff Mass got the boot from KNKX: The NPR affiliate said they would not continue to air his weather program, effective immediately, after he compared Seattle's protests to Kristallnacht on his personal blog earlier this week. "We abhor the comparison and find it sensationalized and misleading — it does not reflect who we are and what we stand for at KNKX," they wrote in a statement.

New York is pushing it: Gov. Cuomo believes New York state's transmission rate is low enough that public schools can re-open for in-person learning this fall. “All schools can open,” Mr. Cuomo said this morning at a news conference. “If anyone can open schools, we can open schools," adding, "we have the best infection rate in the country.” It's ultimately up to the state's local districts whether or not to reopen.

And in Seattle, School Board members are pushing for a new option: “We sent you 45 questions last week and we received an answer to none of them,” said Zachary DeWolf, Seattle School Board president, in regards to Seattle Public Schools' plans on reopening. “We continue to be confused.” Dahlia Bazzaz has more for the Seattle Times about the tense negotiations—there's only one week to decide on what to do about remote learning this fall.

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The Death of the $600 Unemployment Benefit Is Not About Economics; It's About Discipline and Power

The story of this book I bought not long ago.
The story of this book I bought not long ago. Charles Mudede

The question we must ask right now: Why is the GOP so determined to expire for good the extra $600 a week in federal unemployment benefits? The answer is not so obvious. For one, economists are certain that reducing unemployment benefits "will pull the rug out from the economic recovery." The pandemic is clearly not going away any time soon. The job market is still in the gutter and not looking at the stars. Of the estimated 40 million jobs lost during the first months of the pandemic, about 9 million have returned, and returned in a climate that daily batters any job opportunities that are out there.

In June, 4.8 million jobs went online because of the aggressive reopening push. But the sharp increase in infection and death rates caused by the reopening has predictably reversed the recovery. The job market is once again in decline.

The White House's economic adviser Larry Kudlow is not in the wilderness. What he said clumsily on CNN (workers do not want to work because the benefits are so good) is consistent with what almost all of the members of his party and those who support its political program believe. But this thinking, this insistence that workers are inherently lazy, makes no economic sense. But it does make sense when we seriously consider the essence of capitalism.

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Their Health Care Cut, Hilton Workers Stage Die-In

Welcome, can I get your bags?
Welcome, can I get your bags? Unite Here Local 8

Look, obviously, it’s ridiculous that your ability to get health care — to live — depends on the whims of your employer in this dumb, dumb country. But that’s the system we’re stuck with, and that’s why you might see piles of dead bodies outside the Hilton Seattle.

Yesterday dozens of Hilton workers staged a die-in outside the hotel, protesting Hilton’s decision to cut off their access to health care in the middle of a global pandemic. At the protest, a Grim Reaper walked the workers out to the sidewalk alongside a black casket. I can’t even imagine how stressful this must have been for the participants, for whom death isn’t just some abstract far-off possibility, but a very real threat now that their bosses have decided they shouldn’t be able to afford to go to the doctor.

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A New Shave Ice Spot on Capitol Hill, Salare is Back, and More Food News You Can Use: August 7, 2020 Edition

The newly opened Kakigori Dessert Cafe is now serving shave ice and other warm-weather treats on Capitol Hill.
The newly opened Kakigori Dessert Cafe is now serving shave ice and other warm-weather treats on Capitol Hill. Kakigori Dessert Cafe via Instagram

This week bring a slew of new (and newly reopened) places to eat, like Chef Eduoardo Jordan’s Salare (now offering three takeout options), Monica Dimas's Little Neon Taco (now open for outdoor dining), and Sip House (a new Vietnamese cafe on the Ave). Read on for all that and more of the latest food-world updates. For more ideas, check out our full in-person dining directory, our takeout & delivery directory, and our guide to Seattle farmers markets.


ANJU Bar and Eatery
Dig into kimchi jun, japchae, crispy tofu, and other Korean street food-inspired bites at the White Center spot's outdoor seating area. Those who still prefer to stay in can continue ordering food for pickup.

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Don’t Worry, Donald Trump Didn’t Just Ban Video Games — Just a Couple of Other Apps

Youll probably be seeing these logos together a lot more often.
You'll probably be seeing these logos together a lot more often. Cindy Ord / Getty Images
For a brief moment today, The Gamers™ were all extremely on-edge about some bonkers news that Donald Trump might have just accidentally banned all Americans from playing some of the most popular video games: League of Legends, Fortnight, Call of Duty, and even some variations of chess.

But you can all relax. The executive order that Trump just signed does indeed significantly curtail speech, blocking U.S. users from downloading TikTok and WeChat. But your games are safe. For now.

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Where to Celebrate National S'mores Day 2020 in Seattle

Sawyers smore choco tacos are available for takeout, in case you were wondering.
Sawyer's s'more choco tacos are available for takeout, in case you were wondering. Starchefs via Sawyer Instagram

If you're like us, you're looking for ways to make this summer feel as normal as possible, as safely as possible. One of the best ways we know how to do that is by indulging in quintessentially summery treats, and National S'mores Day on Monday, August 10 provides us with a particularly special occasion to do just that. Below, we've rounded up all the places to get your fix of that sought-after mix of graham crackers, chocolate, and marshmallows, whether it's sundaes, cookies, or the classic, unadulterated version. Most of the options below are available year-round (with the exception of Theo Chocolate's dreamy DIY s'mores kits available just for the occasion on Saturday, August 8), but note that many restaurants are closed on Mondays, so plan ahead accordingly.

“Mackles’more” at Hello Robin
Capitol Hill’s Hello Robin features the “Mackles'more” regularly—it’s a s'mores cookie with Theo chocolate chunks, and yes, it’s named after that Macklemore (also reportedly a Capitol Hill resident). Their takeout window is open daily.
Capitol Hill

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City Closes Waterfront Park to "Assess Instability" of Pier 58 and Adjoining Uplands

We got some instability here.
We got some instability here. Courtesy @streetphotojournalism

On Thursday Seattle Parks and Recreation fenced off Waterfront Park between Miners Landing and the Seattle Aquarium to investigate some apparent "instability" in the area.

A spokesperson for Seattle Parks said a waterline break near Pier 58 initially drew them to the area. Once crews showed up, they noticed "a need to assess the stability of the Pier and adjoining uplands."

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The 43 Best Things to Do in Seattle This Weekend: August 7-9, 2020

Pulitzer Prize-winning author Isabel Wilkersons new book, Caste, has the ultimate stamp of approval: Its the 86th selection for Oprah’s Book Club. Tune in to a livestreamed discussion with the author on Friday.
Pulitzer Prize-winning author Isabel Wilkerson's new book, Caste, has the ultimate stamp of approval: It's the 86th selection for Oprah’s Book Club. Tune in to a livestreamed discussion with Wilkerson tonight. Courtesy of Oprah Winfrey

With the number of COVID-19 cases increasing across the state, it's more imperative than ever that you wear a mask and keep your distance at the in-person events listed below (like Georgetown Art Attack and a Tonnemaker Farm Dinner). With that in mind, there are also lots of great events happening that don't require leaving your house, from round two of Christopher Frizzelle's Gay Misérables to a chance to see Seattle's own Pam's Kitchen on Food Network's Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives, and from a virtual drag show with Joe Torres at Julia's on Broadway to the Weeknd on TikTok. Read on for all of our top picks for the weekend, or check out our guides to movies to stream this weekend. For event more options, check out our complete streaming events and protests & resistance calendars, as well as our guides to the best movies to stream at home this weekend and anti-racism resources and events.


Solitude Social Club
Hugo House's bookish happy hour gives the digital floor to guest writers every Friday evening. This week, tune in to hear how author Rone Shavers (Silverfish) is finding happiness and meaning through literature during this period of isolation.

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The Encore Presentation of Gay Miz Is Tonight!

Sara Porkalob!
Starring Sara Porkalob and four other scorching-hot theater actors. Tickets here.

The Stranger is innovating like crazy as we try to respond to life in the stupidest country in the stupidest year on earth.

One of the crazier—and by crazier, I mean MOST AMAZING—things we've tried so far is Gay Misérables, a streaming theater spectacular that actually has nothing to do with Les Misérables.* If you don't like Les Miz, you will be right at home in this show. If you don't like SPD, you will REALLY be at home in this show.


We just thought it was a funny title for a show featuring queer theater actors and music. Each cast member got to pick two or three songs to cover, out of all the songs in the universe, and The Stranger hired Steven K. Tran to create original arrangements and karaoke tracks (and Steven has a brief appearance in the show as well).

All of them are geniuses, and they will blow your mind. And tonight's the night! After its original presentation during Pride weekend 2020, we proudly present the encore presentation of the show everyone's been talking about all summer.

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A Pantry Full of Chef Edouardo Jordan's Jams, Mixes, and Stocks

Chef Edouardo Jordan says hell keep his new pantry program open when they open in-house dining again. Because now people in Texas and Florida and South Carolina can enjoy our products, he told us.
Chef Edouardo Jordan says he'll keep his new pantry program open even when his restaurants open in-house dining again. "Because now people in Texas and Florida and South Carolina can enjoy our products," he told us. JONATHAN VANDERWEIT

“Like every other restaurant owner in this city, we’re just trying to figure it out.”

So says Edouardo Jordan, the chef and restaurateur behind Ravenna destinations JuneBaby, Salare, and Lucinda Grain Bar. Except that Jordan is, of course, not like every other restaurant owner in the city. The chef—a multiple James Beard Award winner featured by everyone from the New York Times to Esquire to People magazine—enjoys a form of national restaurant prominence that comes along only once, maybe twice in a generation for a Seattle chef. He’s part of a continuing vanguard of Black restaurant excellence with deep roots in the American culinary tradition, one that’s put him in rare and lauded company. Put simply, Jordan is a star.

So when a chef like Edouardo Jordan tells you, in no uncertain terms, that this is a wild and terrifying moment to be in the restaurant business, we should all be listening. “We’ve had discussions with landlords, reviewed all of our books, and we’re trying to determine next steps,” Jordan tells The Stranger, “but there are just so many unknowns.”

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Youryoungbody Throw a Sherbet-Colored Space Rave in Their Latest Music Video

Were all in our own party bubbles lately.
We're all in our own party bubbles lately. "OD" by Youryoungbody

I first met the darkwave duo Youryoungbody at Capitol Hill Block Party three years ago, when the band's vocalist Duh Cripe came out in a singular outfit—a black cowboy hat, a Shania Twain t-shirt, and bondage pants—and announced the duo was about to make their set "satanic." They did, and I was an immediate fan.

Since then, Cripe and the duo's other half Killian Brom released Youryoungbody's debut album, Devotion, which made many local critics' end-of-year lists (including The Stranger's Jasmyne Keimig and Kim Selling). Some of those critics have described the album as "intensely throbbing" and "deeply melancholic," which is all correct. The quickest route to a goth rave in 2020 is to wear black, turn off the lights, and blast Devotion.

But Devotion's standout song "OD," which kicks off the album's final act, takes listeners on a different journey, bringing the album to the early-2000s dancefloor. Its y2k pop-techno sounds are a little brighter, like dawn cracking through at a rave. So I was excited to see all these sherbet-toned pinks and oranges in the band's new music video for "OD," which just dropped today:

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Slog AM: Washington State Will Have to Shut Down Its Economy in October, the US Job Market Is Re-Collapsing, Swallows Are the Best Birds Ever

Public transportation getting too grizzly...
Public transportation getting too grizzly... CraigRJD/

If Washington Continues to Refuse Near-Universal Mask-Wearing: Then it will have to shut down its economy in October. This depressing scenario, predicted by a University of Washington’s Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation model, is likely to become a fact of life because even here in Seattle face masks are still far from universal. Go into a store, there are violators of state's mandate; go into a bus or light rail car, and there are the violators again. It's the law to wear the damn things but so many Americans are just so damn tiresome, even in our progressive city.

Speaking of Public Transportation: It will be destroyed by Uber if face masks are not enforced. Order an Uber, and they don't play. Masks must be on all the way to where you’re going. Get on a bus, and there you go: several people behaving like it's the summer of 2019. Because I don't want to play with these fools, I, a devoted user of public transportation in the pre-pandemic days, now strictly use Uber to get around the city.

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