Councilmember Tammy Morales stumped for Nicole Thomas-Kennedy downtown this morning: After a bunch of right-wingers and civility trolls tried to get the city fired up over some inflammatory tweets, Morales highlighted the City Attorney’s primary role of defending Seattle’s progressive revenue streams and policies against constant corporate assault. TV reporters then did what TV reporters do (amplify the “concerns” of the safe and landed gentry, and then frame questions as if politicians create public policy based on extreme or outlier incidents). In answer to their questions, NTK argued that addressing root causes of petty crime would bring the city a better return on investment than jail, that jail doesn’t appear to deter people from stealing food and clothes because they keep going to jail and yet they keep being cold and hungry, and that people are not living in park encampments because of “Seattle’s progressive policies,” they’re living in parks because they don’t have homes.
Predictable. Pedestrian. 1 star
— Nicole Thomas-Kennedy for Sea City Attorney (@ntkallday) October 15, 2021
For the 100th time: Seattle has been thinking about homelessness for a while now. Election day will mark the 7th year since former Mayor Ed Murray and Executive Dow Constantine declared homelessness an emergency. “Progressives,” hobbled by a corporate mayor, gained a majority on the city council 1.8 years ago, about four months before the pandemic shutdown the economy, derailed everything, reduced shelter capacity, increased mental health problems, and ramped up income inequality. The idea that homelessness emerged from progressive city policy — and not, say, Reagan gutting federal funding for housing and mental health services and then subsequent presidents refusing to make adequate investments all while Big Pharma kicked off an opioid epidemic — is so fucking dumb that I can’t even type any more.
In the some of most consequential elections in city of Seattle, the incumbent refuses to say who he's voting for. Whether you agree with me or not, you'll always know where I stand on the issues. pic.twitter.com/uPN9Viytfy
— Joe Nguyen for King County Executive (@meetjoenguyen) October 15, 2021
Just say you're going to vote for each other and get on with it, cowards: Dow Constantine, Bruce Harrell, Republican Ann Davison, and Sara Nelson will not say who they plan to vote for in two crucial races. These kinds of triangulating non-statements let you know how serious these people are when it comes to ending mass incarceration, making big businesses pay for the problems they produce, protecting workers, or doing anything a corporation doesn't expressly give them permission to do.
Godspeed the day we stop organizing the K-12 experience around holidays: A Race and Equity Team at an elementary school in Fremont cancelled a Halloween parade, "saying the event has historically marginalized students of color who don’t celebrate the holiday," the Seattle Times reports. Even though they supposedly champion "local control" in school programming, the right wing is of course trying to stir up a culture war skirmish about this nonsense. I think cancelling a Halloween parade because kids from different backgrounds feel excluded is a fine reason to do so, and not just because I remember how many classes I couldn't participate in growing up (I was raised a Jehovah's Witness—long story). If kids want to participate in Halloween festivities, they can walk down half the aisles in a grocery store, walk into any retail establishment, walk around any neighborhood on Halloween, or attend any of the thousand Halloween events currently on offer around the city.
Or, hell, have the kids interview this bat: It would train them well for a life of interviewing politicians:
Why would a corrections officer ask his sister to shoot him near a courthouse and a school, and then call up the cops to report the shooting as an attack by an unknown assailant? KING 5 does not get to the bottom of it, but they do report that both people were arrested and held on suspicion of "conspiracy to commit assault in the first degree, conspiracy to commit a drive-by shooting, assault in the first degree and other charges."
Bus driver shortage and anti-vaxxers force Seattle school district to "suspend" 142 routes: They're maintaining routes for the most vulnerable kids (special needs, homeless), but parents of over 6,000 kids might need to send their children to school using some other means, the Seattle Times reports.
Not counting cops on leave, 138 officers at the Seattle Police Department have refused to turn in their vax cards. Another 100 are asking for exemptions; good Christian Scientists all, I'm sure. They have until Monday to show proof or else face the boot and go risk lives at some other department.
Here's the latest data on where SPD is at re: vaccinations, per mayor's office. That dramatic 350 number from last week continues to drop: pic.twitter.com/NMQZ7HA8Sa
— David Kroman (@KromanDavid) October 15, 2021
Anti-vaxxer cops is a problem around the country: Cops in San Diego, Los Angeles, Chicago, San Francisco, and Denver are refusing to protect their communities from the spread of a deadly virus, and the ones in Colorado and Oregon launched unsuccessful lawsuits to get their way, the Associated Press reports. Weird how these sworn public servants refuse to follow the orders of their civilian leaders. Wonder what's going on there.
District judge upholds Washington's vaccine mandate against lawsuit: Some cops, firefighters, and WSDOT employees argued the Governor's vaccine mandate discriminated against people of color and "categorically" denied religious and medical exemptions. Today they lost the fight to block the mandate, MyNorthwest reports.
“Hey [Person 1] im a capitol police officer who agrees with your political stance:” That was the salutation allegedly used by a cop who now faces obstruction charges for telling a Trumpian insurrectionist to delete some Facebook videos showing him smoking in the building. The Washington Post has the story.
FDA panel recommends a Johnson & Johnson booster: The actual FDA will need to approve the recommendation, but the team of scientists who offered it up said that anyone over 18 who received the J&J jab should score a booster after two months of the initial injection, according to the New York Times.
Rents are up all over the country: A report from Jeanna Smialek in the New York Times points the finger at years of under-building following the housing crisis leading to tight and hot housing markets, which aren't as sexy as they sound. "As buyers bid up prices on single-family homes and condominiums, many people who would have otherwise moved toward homeownership found themselves unable to afford it, increasing demand for apartments and home leases," according to the Times. Reason #381 why Seattle needed to re-legalize apartments everywhere yesterday.
We're opening our land borders to Canada and Mexico, but not to asylum-seekers. The Biden administration plans to reinstate Trump's 'Remain in Mexico' policy next month after a Trump-appointed judge sided with a couple states that had sued. As Biden goes back to the drawing board, immigration advocates warn the policy will "lead to immense human suffering ... continued cruelty, disorder, and violations of refugee law," according to Al Jazeera.
We're reopening our other borders on November 8, but only to the fully vaccinated and to those who can produce a negative COVID-19 test from 72-hours before the travel date. "The new rules will apply to Schengen countries - a group of 26 European nations - as well as the UK, Brazil, China, India, Iran, Ireland, and South Africa," the BBC reports.
Donors reward Sinema for trying to tank Biden's agenda: She raised $1.1 million last quarter with "a big assist from the pharmaceutical and financial industries," which amounted to "more campaign money in the last three months than in any quarter since she became a senator," Politico reports. Some speculate that she's amassing a war chest to break from the Democrats and fund an independent Senate run, which would be a dumb idea:
I'll leave you with some Francis Bebey: Not afraid to enter the weekend on a contemplative note: