Slog AM: China Floods, Russia Permafrost Melts, U.S. Women Lose First Olympics Soccer Match

Comments

1

That was pretty sweet from the mayor. I still miss your Wednesday morning updates from the sketchy alley behind that haphazard UD house you lived in.... Good luck, Nathalie!!!!!!!!!!

!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

2

Floods are not just in China, but every continent incl Europe, Africa, North America, Australia. Check out all the floods just in June and July 2021 alone: https://floodlist.com/europe

Nature Bats Last. And She's pissed.

3

«Encampent removal inevitable: [WSDOT], the stewards of our freeways, determined that at least some of the rock-throwing incidents are linked to homeless encampments near the hotspots.»
Obviously. They have lived there so long they see the freeway users as trespassers and are responding with their meagre physical force....

4

"State troopers say what's difficult is multiple people are doing these crimes"

Multiple people committing crimes is difficult for the police? Isnt it like, their jobs to deal with such things?

5

Wish you well in your next endeavor and hope you enjoy the time off.

6

Seems like a back-handed "au revoir" from Jenny D.
But that is a ringing endorsement from a weasel politician!

7

@4: Yes, horrible evil people dropping rocks onto cars from various locations at any time of the day or night is difficult to stop. If you have a miraculous solution, give them a call.

These crimes merit life with no parole.

8

@4 they probably mean it is difficult to get the evidence for a conviction or even book someone in jail when it is multiple people dipping in-and-out of various wooded encampments who go by street nicknames and the only witnesses are DOT cams perched high-up and people driving 60+mph who just had their lives flash before their eyes as some asshat on the side of the road is throwing shit at their windscreen.
State Patrol can't be everywhere all the time, luckily some fed-up motorists are taking things into their own hands and tracking said shit-heads down and hopefully making them eat rocks before the police show up. Oh really, "Skooter McMash", you were just trimming blackberries by the side of the freeway at 4am in the morning? Not chucking shit at cars? A likely story...nonetheless, hard to prove it was that person unless they were caught in the act is what their public defender would say.

9

Hey Nathalie, before you go, could you do me a favor and stop sourcing news links from NYT? They're paywalled. Not all of us want to give money to that blighted institution colloquially known as The Grey Lady.

Oh, and please tell your fellow copy-pasters in the newsroom to do the same. It seems your entire outfit has a recurring problem with chronically linking to paywalled sites. Kinda sometimes seems like you want us to get our news from other sources instead of putting in the work yourselves. Weird, right?

Thanks in advance!

10

@9: Well, if you're too cheap to pay for subscription you can always delete its cache in your browser and go right to it.

11

@9: Grow up and buy subscriptions, cheapskate.

12

Obviously the homesteaders of the camps are enforcing their property rights, seized by eminent domain, on the native population who continue to do their traditional modes of life.

Just hope they don't call in their own army, like we did to the First Nations ...

13

Flooding:
I can't believe how calm folks were in that subway. I won't say I would have been panicking, but god damn, I would have been really nervous! It even looked like the water was another foot higher outside the train window.

14

I think the solution here is to give these people a safe rock throwing space. I'm sure this behavior is a manifestation of their anger against the capitalist system that forced them out of their homes so we should not be suppressing this outlet for them. I would suggest we move them outside Seattle City Hall and provide them a large box full of rocks and let them work through their issues.

15

@9: "Hey Nathalie, before you go, could you do me a favor and stop sourcing news links from NYT?"

@9, would you kindly do the rest of us a favor and stop making inane requests?

I wanted to say something like, "Would you kindly do the rest of us a favor and go fuck yourself?" But I figure that would be a tad impolite.

16

Wishing you a Thelma and Louise future? That's pretty ungracious of Her Honor, I must say.

I'm thinking of Joni Mitchell's "Down to You":

Everything comes and goes
Marked by lovers and styles of clothes
Things that you held high
And told yourself were true
Lost or changing as the days come down to you

Thank you, Ms. Joni (heart heart heart).

And thank you, Nathalie. Very best wishes. Stay in touch.

17

Always cracks me up when people think a blogger linking to original reporting is failing at their job, like how lazy of you not to fly to china to independently source this story so I don’t have to pay a few bucks for a subscription to a paper that is actually equipped to do this?? Never gets old

18

nice note from Jenny
it means you’re gonna
go off a Cliff somewhere
but before you Do you’ll be meet-
ing up with Brad Pitt so there’s that

& thnx! 4 all
the Fishwrappings!

adios amiga &
via con Diosa

19

Can an entire state be nominated for a Darwin Award?

Asking for a friend.

20

Man, tough choices. Do we do the moral thing and try to save the unvaccinated or do we cut our losses and try to save ourselves from those who seek to destroy our nation?

21

Anyone with a brain could’ve told you it was foolish to condone/enable “camps” next to the highway, oh, years ago.

Also, anyone with a brain could’ve told you that, of course the rocks and debris were coming from these assholes at the camps.

Awww, so mean, right?

Innocent people could easily be killed by these assholes. Sweep the area aggressively and trespass anyone that returns. Do it over and over again if necessary and stop calling those assholes my “unhorsed neighbors”.

22

Alabama is gonna Alabama. Am I right?

23

It would be clarifying if all the anti-homeless-camp people would specify their preferred approach to the homeless crisis, since they're pretty sure everyone else is doing it wrong. Yesterday we had people coming out against administering life-saving health care for people experiencing overdose, which is certainly a thing one could believe is a "solution" if they were so inclined, ditto caitlyn jenner's "put them in a field somewhere" -- lots of big brains with even bigger ideas inside them! What's inside yours? Do tell!

24

What to do with the unvaccinated morons?

I’d really like to see us go the direction the France and Germany are heading and require proof of vaccination before allowing people to return to public life.

Certainly proof of vaccination should be required to return to work, perhaps tie it in with the other documents we need to provide when starting a new job.
Absolutely require vaccination before a boarding pass is issued.
Perhaps insurers could deny coverage to the unvaccinated?

Whatever we do it’s long past time to start playing hardball with the anti-vac crowd.

25

That's a nutty farewell.

26

Also, we'll miss you Nathalie! I'm guessing jenny mistook you for Charles and sent that photo thinking you'd appreciate a nice image of two fine ladies murdering a gasoline powered car.

27

@23

Actually blip we’ve stated it a million times before.
1 Offer shelter (and yea, I’m okay with the shelter being dilapidated old motels).
2 If the offer of shelter is refused then arrest them.
3 Once incarcerated check for warrants. Extradite to appropriate jurisdiction.
4 Anyone determined to be mentally unfit for trial is also mentally unfit to be released so they should be transferred to a hospital until such time that they are fit for trial.
5 Any tents set up on sidewalks or parks should be swept within 6 hours (1/4 day).
6 repeat steps 1-5 as necessary.

Yes I understand we’ll have to pay for steps 1 and 4 and yes I think that’s an appropriate use of tax dollars.
No I don’t actually want to help these people. Call me heartless if you want but I simply want them gone.

As for responses to ODs. No I don’t think we should be sending EMS to drug overdose cases. I have no more sympathy for the drug user than I do for the antivaxer. We need to exhibit less compassion when dealing with both.

28

@27 There are a few holes in the plan:
1. We don't have enough shelter. Building more costs a giant pile of money.
2. If we did this, we'd end up filling the jail too. Another even more giant pile of money.
3. That might get a few percentage points out of our hands. I'd guess that if the warrants are low-level, the receiving jurisdiction might well not want them back for trial.
4. Not enough mental health beds either. Another giant pile of money slightly smaller than the jail.
5. A 1/4 day standard probably requires a significantly larger police force. Not sure how giant this pile of money is, but it's not small.

You good with $200+ million in new taxes for this plan? What's your funding plan?

29

@28
1. You're assuming the shelter has to be in Seattle. It does not.
2. You're also assuming arrest = jail. Again it does not. Sometimes arrest can be the only way to get someone into a diversion program or somewhere that can diagnose their needs. Repeated arrest also wears on people and those who have no desire to actually improve will inevitably move on to a more lenient jurisdiction.
3. I'd add to this a concerted effort to connect people back with family/friends. Many of these people are homeless because they have burned their support bridges but there is also no way they are going to return to society without that support. Involving family/friends will also lower costs and improve recovery rates.
5. Not necessarily. Once word gets out that camps will be swept and not tolerated people will self sweep and move on.

30

28 i see you conveniently forgot to subtract all the savings you get from leaving the homeless to die if they od

32

@28 “You good with $200+ million in new taxes for this plan? What's your funding plan?”

Actually I was expecting it to be more. But we’ll use your numbers.

Since Seattle is already budgeting on spending something like $160 million on the homeless we’d only need to come up with $40 million and half of that could surely be found in unaudited grants to nonprofits.

34

Seattle has property outside the city where they can just dump — sorry, “shelter” the homeless? And the resources to track down family members of homeless people, who can house them? And your homeless population hates being swept off the streets and into jail cells with access to food, bathrooms & showers, to the point that they will simply move somewhere else where they will be welcomed & not harassed for existing?

Fascinating stuff, surprised the city hasn’t taken advantage of these lavish resources and its notably sleeping-indoors-averse homeless population. So many simple solutions to chronic, structural problems.

35

@32 $200M was a lowball guess. I would have said $500M except people would have complained about overestimating and gold plating.

I'm sure you can find $40M in FraudWasteAndAbuse. Because every time people shake that couch cushion, they find so much money there. Yup, definitely.

36

Best wishes for your future endeavors, Nathalie. I can appreciate your wish for a break.

37

Fun fact - "some baseball player" Eddy Alvarez won a silver medal at the 2014 Winter Olympics in short track speed skating. Yes, he is a baseball play now for the Florida Marlins.

38

Good luck, Nathalie! And "Graduation" is a fantastic record. No need to apologize.

39

Nathalie, you are amazing and I will miss your wit and wisdom. Good luck!

40

@33 and there IT is. the moral superiority that comes with allowing people to live in filth and squalor until such time that we can solve the issue and magically build custom homes for every one of them in Seattle. That is never going to happen even if the will was there to make it happen. There are no good guys and bad guys in this story and sneering in contempt at those who suggest that we don't have the resources to solve this crisis and never will only serves to make you feel like you are better than everyone else, but you aren't. Your "solution" is to allow the filth and rot to continue with no end in sight. The sad truth is and always will be that we have limited resources to deal with this problem and some people aren't going to change unless they are compelled to do so. Even officials know this when they say we need regional solutions. Once you stop sermonizing and start acknowledging some of the actual truth in this crisis maybe then your voice will carry some weight in this discussion. Until then you're just another pompous, progressive blowhard who gets off by demonizing their neighbors.

41

@40
Well said.

42

Seems to me that if there is a problem with homeless campers next to a highway throwing rocks at passing cars, you clear out the homeless camps along the highways, immediately, with force if necessary. That is the minimum response I expect from the state. Innocent motorist lives are in clear danger at the hands of irresponsible and criminal campers. Clear them out. Arrest those that won't move on, immediately.

Does this solve the homeless problem? Of course not. But it does directly address the problem of rock throwing at cars on the Interstate highways.

You can now go back to yelling at each other about what to do with the homeless. But, one thing you don't let them do is camp or hang out next to the highway. You can at least fix that, and let the professor and his ilk howl as they will. But, fix it. Because you can.

43

A thousand best wishes to you, Nathalie!
You will obviously be missed!

44

@40:

"...sneering in contempt at those who suggest that we don't have the resources to solve this crisis and never will only serves to make you feel like you are better than everyone else..."

If you believe this, then why are you even arguing about it? If you've already made up your mind that nothing can be done, then your ONLY option is to learn to live with "the filth and rot", because you've as much as admitted there IS NO SOLUTION - it's never going away. And when has compelling anyone to change worked, ever? If that's the best you've got: let's force someone to do something against their will; something that history and experience has proven time and again won't make them change; something that won't actually solve whatever problem you see in them, aside from sweeping it under the proverbial rug so YOU can feel comfortable knowing you'll never again have to encounter it - then how does that make you in any way, shape or form superior to those who do in fact offer tangible solutions, albeit ones you yourself don't approve of? Because, if WE, living in one of the richest cities in the richest country in the history of recorded human civilization don't have the resources to solve this problem HERE AND NOW - what makes you think anyone else, anywhere else DOES?

As the saying goes: if you're not part of the solution, then you're part of the problem. And throwing up ones hands, and then turning around, and in practically the same breath proposing to make it someone else's problem is most definitely NOT a solution anyone with half a brain or an ounce of compassion in their body would recognize as such.

45

@42 You’re making the common mistake that the history TA, and their ilk actually want to solve the problem.

They don’t. They like the encampments and the filth because they fit the narrative of the failure of late-stage capitalism. The camps make a great prop and backdrop for them.

They know the problem of the camps can be solved by not allowing them. They know if you sweep early and often the camps will go away.
But if the camps went away they wouldn’t be able to use the homeless in their fight against the system man.

46

Some choice data on housing from today's WSJ - I knew small starter homes were not being built to the extent they were decades ago, but wow look at the decline:

"Homeowners from previous generations had access to smaller homes at the start of their financial lives. In the late 1970s, an average of 418,000 new units of entry-level housing were built each year, according to data from Freddie Mac. By the 2010s, that number had fallen to 55,000 new units a year. For 2020, an estimated 65,000 new entry-level homes were completed."

https://www.wsj.com/articles/the-shortage-of-starter-homes-extends-beyond-major-cities-11626872400?mod=hp_lista_pos1

47

there's Alway bound to be
some Collateral Damage
in Capitalism's War on
the Poor* and Home-
lessness is just a-
nother Symptom
of Greed trump-
ing Humanity.

*you're Next
'middle class.'

48

RE: The homeless

Any so-called "solution" to homelessness is just a band-aid on a gushing wound.

The problem is that the wealthy control too much and the non-wealthy have been indoctrinated from birth to praise their oppressors. We could very likely solve many of the world's most terrible problems, homelessness and drug addiction included, if only humans were a little less self-centered and a little more empathic.

@45 makes a jab at it, but runaway capitalism really is fucking the world up. And spare me the platitudes like "capitalism's brought more people out of poverty... blah blah." Capitalism's got its uses, but it's not the panacea the wealthy make it out to be. It may be great for them but it's failing everyone else.

49

@44 C'mon man. No one is saying throw your hands up and waive them all around like you just don't care. We're simply acknowledging that Seattle doesn't have the resources to support EVERYONE. Activists act like we need to take in every case that rolls into town. Don't give me the bullshit about how they are all from around here. That is not true in the slightest. Many are from around the region and there is a good chunk from even farther away. They all need to go home. If you want services in Seattle you should be able to prove that you lived and worked in Seattle BEFORE you became homeless and by that I don't mean that you rolled up here on the Greyhound, stayed at the Y for a days while working at Burger King and then decided that was too much for you and threw up a tent. I want a tax return that shows you had an address and a job. And you're right, you can't force people to change but you also know what? People aren't going to change if you enable them either. No one should be forced into rehab but what should happen is if you commit a crime you should be held accountable for that crime, if you are a threat to yourself and others then you should be removed from society until that is no longer the case, if you don't want to get better or commit to being part of the social construct then you should go somewhere else. As you rightly note if you are not part of the solution you are part of the problem and its pretty clear to a great many of us the activists on the council and in the homeless community are not part of the solution. There is also the corollary that doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result is the definition of insanity and that my friend is exactly why the Compassion Seattle amendment is currently polling at 60%.

50

The crux of the argument against camps, in this exact instance, I’d the fact that the assholes are throwing large rocks, etc at random cars….is anyone really going to get all weepy about those assholes? What would you think about it if your mom, dad, wife, kid, etc died from this crap?

Just stop it, nobody needs to pretend this is remotely ok. You can still support actual services and progress and admit these assholes are indeed assholes and deserve jail for trying to kill people.

52

@50 Oh you naive waif.

If these most vulnerable neighbors who are throwing rocks and pieces of rebar off of bridges onto the cars below are assholes it is only because the cruel system of capitalism we live in made them assholes. They are not to blame for their actions, which are just a symptom of late-stage capitalism. In fact they are not assholes at all, they are misunderstood and unappreciated heroes who are speaking up for all living beings as they defend the Earth from the climate destroying machines.

But fear not. This is Seattle. Pete Holmes and Dan Satterberg will make sure that they are not overly inconvenienced. Dan and Pete have probably already made sure they have been released as they are just not mentally capable of being held accountable for their actions. They will soon find another encampment, perhaps in Northgate, where they can continue their campaign against the system by throwing rocks and rebar off the newly constructed Progressive Posturing Bridge.

53

Happy trails, Nathalie. I hope you find your bliss. I always enjoyed your writing.

54

@51 I wouldn’t wish death on anyone, for sure.

As sad as it is, I also don’t sit awake at night feeling weepy about junkies. I know it’s hard to avoid needles full of heroin - they sneak right up and inject you like ninjas. Guess I’m terrible.

Outright condoning rock throwing assholes or not, the city just sat around hoping the dipshits would just stop on their own or something for over a month. Jenny just passed the buck to DOT instead of even remotely offering a solution.

55

@49:

Why shouldn't we take care of them? Why does it even matter where they came from? They're HERE, and so that makes it our problem to deal with, whether you like it or not. A person in need is a person in need, regardless of where they were born. Establishing some sort of "former residence criteria" is simply another tactic for people like you use to further separate the "deserving" (locals) from the "undeserving", when in fact you've demonstrated time and again with your statements that you don't really want to help ANY of them - you just want them all to go away, to be someone else's problem, or at the very least to remain out of your sight so you don't have to be constantly reminded they exist.

Last I checked, unless Seattle is being overrun by unhoused AND undocumented people, they're citizens of this country, not to mention fellow human beings. In Mark 10:21-22 Yeshua didn't exhort the rich man to give his money ONLY to the poor who could prove they were born in Jerusalem. Hell, if people like you had their way you'd "reducto ad absurdum" this down to individual neighborhoods or even streets - anything to avoid taking care of other people.

56

@55 that's an admirable take on the situation but I don't think there is any realistic way you could actually make that work. We have finite resources and good governance demands you allocate those resources and that is going to be mean you just can't help everyone and will need to prioritize. Even if funding wasn't an issue you still could not build enough "affordable" housing to meet demand. After all why wouldn't anyone who wanted to live in Seattle just show up and ask for a subsidized place? I respect your opinion but labeling me some cold hearted bastard simply because I'm acknowledging there are realities to the situation won't make things better. If anything its those types of attitudes that are going to push the charter amendment to pass this fall.

57

@56:

You sound like that character, the appropriately named Glum, from the 1960's "Banana Splits": "It'll never work! It's hopeless!" You never have anything positive to contribute yourself, but you're always absolutely certain nobody else could possibly ever find a solution to any given problem.

If we left things up to people like you, The Wright Brothers would never have built an airplane, NASA would never have sent astronauts to the moon, Jonas Salk would never have invented the polio vaccine, Ada Lovelace would never have written the first computational algorithm. You apparently lack any of the qualities necessary for solving problems: imagination, perseverance, adaptability, or the ability to seek out people with more knowledge, expertise and experience than yourself. So, of course YOU find the problem intractable, because you don't seem to have the capacity to envision it any other way.

58

@57 I never said the problem was unsolvable simply that Seattle lacked the resources to do it themselves. Do you honestly think if we build 20,000 units of affordable housing and say there are no residency requirements to qualify for such housing you won't be flooded with 100k applicants from all over the country? You can be noble. Just don't be naive.

59

Interesting Thelma & Louise film image Mayor Jenny Durkan sent you with her farewell wishes, Nathalie. Perhaps a wild night of reckless passion with Brad Pitt (oof!)?
Nonetheless, wishing you all the very best in your new endeavors, Nathalie. You will indeed be greatly missed.

@19 COMTE: Congrats again for beating me to it.

@20 Tmplknght: I vote for Door # 2.

No surprise that blood-red pro-Trumpist Alabama has the lowest vaccination rate and the highest percentage of misinformed citizens in the U.S. How sad, too, that dying patients seeking vaccinations there are now told by doctors that it's too late. They were warned, at least by Dr. Anthony Fauci and the CDC if nobody else (certainly not Kay Ivey!). They refused to get vaxxed, wear masks, and practice social distancing, claiming it's their "right". And now these same people, among those guilty of extending the COVID-19 pandemic into extra innings are paying the price for their willful ignorance.