Was last year just a dress rehearsal? Today's anniversary of the Capitol Insurrection was marked by testimony, warnings, and candlelight vigils from Washington to Washington. In our Washington, progressives to the east of the mountains held small January 6 vigils in spite of their insurrection-attending neighbors. Just as there are Kshama Sawant supporters in Broadmoor, there are hippies in Stevens County. The reverse is obviously true, too.

To underscore today's weirdness, I submit this headline: Dick Cheney returns to the House and receives a warm welcome … from Democrats

In Biden's speech today, he chastised Trump and the GOP's "web of lies," saying Trump "can’t accept he lost, even though that’s what 93 United States senators, his own attorney general, his own vice-president, governors and state officials in every battleground state have said: he lost. That’s what 81 million of you did when you voted for a new way forward.”

And what does the twice-impeached former president have to say about all that? "Never give up!" (Yes, seriously.) And what about the elected far-right extremists Matt Gaetz and Marjorie Taylor Greene? Gaetz: "We’re ashamed of nothing." Or Steve Bannon? "Seize the day." Here's one of Trump's statements from today, if you want a headache.

Over here in the other Washington, Gov. Inslee noted that Trump "is still intent on continuing this coup effort" and announced his support for legislation that would make it a gross misdemeanor for elected officials and candidates in Washington state to lie about election results. I'm not sure misdemeanors can clot a coup, but, in any case, Republicans weren't thrilled about Inslee's comments.


"Ruse" news: Yesterday's news was consumed by this headline: "Seattle police faked radio chatter about Proud Boys as CHOP formed in 2020, investigation finds." Or, as we put it: "The Cops Just Made Shit Up During CHOP." This morning, Matt asked, "Which elected officials will have the nerve to call out lying cops?" We got an answer today, though it depends on how you interpret the next three blurbs.

In a statement published by Capitol Hill Seattle blog, New Mayor Bruce Harrell called the ruse "totally unacceptable" and said "this kind of tactic never should have been considered, condoned, or carried out in the first place. The path to de-escalation is never through the threat, real or fake, of further agitation." Then: "This cannot happen again, period."

What if it does happen again? Unclear. Bruce says he's marching down to talk to the interim police chief about this—"We will be meeting with Chief Diaz and command staff to ensure this does not happen again"—and working with Councilmember Lisa Herbold to hear the Council's recommendations.

Those recommendations are basically: Train 'em to do better ruses? In a statement released this afternoon, Councilmember Herbold, chair of the Committee on Public Safety and Human Services, called for SPD and the Office of Police Accountability to "immediately work together" to create "a clear policy requiring that SPD’s use of ruses be fully documented." So, go on and ruse, as long as we can peruse? At least Bruce said Never Again.

A quick break for some Vanishing Seattle fodder:

Down in Oregon: Hehe.

The story:

Oregon Democratic gubernatorial candidate Nick Kristof is not qualified to run for governor, because he doesn't meet the election's residency requirements, according to the Oregon Secretary of State's office.

"The rules are the rules and they apply equally to all candidates for office in Oregon," wrote Secretary of State Shemia Fagan Thursday morning. "As Oregon’s chief elections official, it is my responsibility to make sure all candidates on the statewide ballot are qualified to serve if elected."

Kristof, a former New York Times columnist who grew up in rural Oregon, formally announced his run for governor in October 2021. The announcement raised immediate questions around his eligibility, because Kristof had lived in New York state for the prior 20 years—voting as a registered New York state resident as recently as 2020. The Oregon Constitution mandates that candidates for governor must be an Oregon resident for at least three years prior to an election.

More here.

UPDATE: Kristof said NO!

Omicron cases have pushed Washington hospitals to the "brink," reports AP. Many local hospitals are experiencing COVID-19 hospitalizations at a rate higher than any point in the pandemic so far. A director at Harborview Medical Center told reporters that "we are entering, I think, the most challenging phase of this pandemic, period." You can help our hospitals by getting vaccinated, avoiding large crowds, wearing a quality mask, isolating when recommended, and, uh, not going to the ER to get a COVID-19 test. Come on.

The Grammys is postponed and Sundance is moving online due to the surge: In Seattle, you can still participate in Sundance through Northwest Film Forum, as well as virtually.

Peter Bogdanovich is dead and New York Times has a good, complicated obituary. I've somehow avoided watching most of Bogdanovich's movies (The Last Picture Show, Paper Moon), so I don't have much to say about this passing. "My friend Rux loves Bogdanovich," staffer Rich Smith told me today, "but I think he just loves saying Bogdanovich." Other staffer Jas Keimig fucking loves his movie Mask. Keimig is on vacation, but when reached for comment, sent: "He was cool." RIP.

Also dead:

Flowers next to a dead raccoon? Reminds me of my favorite Charles Mudede post:


I brought you flowers, big dead raccoon on the corner of 32nd and South Alaska Street. You have been there for about five days, and though the flies buzz about you, your coat is still handsome, and you don't really smell of the death.

Who or what killed you? What was the last thing you saw? Your family must miss you, and may come across you at night, pause, and wonder, like I wonder, why you are still there. But I do not think you died here. You must have met your end elsewhere and were brought here. But by whom? The construction workers on the massive development across the street or the ones who partially demolished the house that your dead eyes kind of stare at? I remember this house very well. Mexican Americans once lived here, and on Friday nights they would play music, drink beer, and repair cars. Those people are gone and are never coming back.

I brought you flowers, big dead raccoon down the street from where two black men once lived in a blue mother-in-law cottage behind a blue house rented by broke, pizza-eating students. During the weekends, the black men would have lady friends over and barbecue, play '90s R&B, and watch Seahawks games. They were also visited by young men and women. I guessed they were their kids. There was plenty of room in the mother-in-law cottage. It was almost half a house. But one day, the house was demolished. And a few months later, it was replaced by a fancy duplex—each house asking for $1 million. Those brothers are never coming back. But soon after the duplex was completed, a Black Lives Matter sign was posted on the very spot the black men lived and had a good time.

I brought you flowers, big dead raccoon on the corner. And I also brought you a candle, because I know your life once burned brightly. Did you hangout in the Cheasty Greenspace forest? Was that your spot? Did you enjoy eating the eggs of crows or baby crows? Of course you did. That is why you wanted to stay alive. There's nothing in death. No forest, no crow eggs, no city lights.

I brought you flowers, big dead raccoon. And maybe I should have brought some cigarettes and a picture. But I will see you at dusk, when I walk home from Columbia City Station. I will stop by your huge corpse and give it a moment of thought in the twilight. You belonged to the city.

I sent Charles, who is also currently on vacation, that dead raccoon pic: He responded: "I saw a huge dead duck today." Sounds like vacation is going well.

Charles comes back in a few weeks. Jas is back next week. Well, if Jas can get back over the mountains. Jas is currently in Spokane, and the mountains look like this:

All four of the winter highway routes between the east and west are closed at the same time due to whiteout snowstorms, reports the Times. "The closures essentially make cross-state travel nearly impossible," says KIRO. People aren't sure if this has ever happened before.