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Monday, August 15, 2011

Silence the Majority

As time runs out to put the proposed Coal Terminal and its associated rail impacts on the ballot for a vote by Bellingham citizens, it appears, once again, Kelli Linville wants to silence the public, and just work something out with her friends.

Already throwing her prodigious political weight around, she has pressed her followers on the city council to keep a vote off the November ballot.

As she seems ready to successfully run out the clock, there appears little chance that her supporters will let this issue see the light of day.

Hoooooray for democracy !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

(to be continued)

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Sunday, February 13, 2011

Not Exactly Kelli Green !

The desperation of a few to get even with Dan Pike is creating some sort of psycho ward for strange bedfellows.

The strangest of the bunch would be defenders of the environment, protectors of Lake Whatcom, and guardians of our resource lands who are trying to create some fictitious draft for Kelli Linville. What a hoot!

Still others, not Pike haters per se, would have her instead run for county executive in the hope, at long last, of ending the droning of His Mellifluousness.

Talk about "pick your poison." What is more laughable than replacing would be developer, Kremen, with Building Industry Association darling, Linville?

Even worse would be throwing out the mayor who stood up to the UGA scamers intent on Bellingham sprawling into the rural county; the one who leads an effort, more promising than just continuing to sleep with the enemy, aimed at stopping the wholesale rezoning, subdivision and build-out of the land around the city's water supply.

Well, certainly, first find someone at least passingly committed to controlling growth and protecting the environment; not another step and fetch it for the BIA.

Has it occurred to voters, especially those who understand the city's need to control development around the lake, when Linville represented so many local water drinkers, she didn't lift a finger to end the over appropriation of water in its watershed.

When Bellingham proposed to do just that, she stopped the effort with empty promises of action of her own.

Had she encouraged Ecology to enforce instream flows, she'd have, at the same time, stopped the ill managed development that has damaged the lake for decades now, while she and Kremen ducked the issue and happily collected contributions from the growth lobby.

Of course, what sense in expecting help from her. She was busy undermining the courts and helping the BIA loophole laws to get around their decisions and continue a vesting blitzkrieg statewide. The Municipal Water Law was only her most egregious effort on the BIA's behalf.

Let's not let a lack of water, the rights of existing water users, or the importance of current uses get in the way. We got land to subdivide, and lots to flip!

Why, you ask, would Linville carry their water? Just review her campaign contributions for the last few elections. She played a prominent role in the "roadkill caucus", the blueish dems in Olympia with a slightly different definition of "going green."

That propelled her up the committee ladder. The BIA doesn't just make contributions, they collect lots of favors when leadership jobs are decided.

You might also ask what is Linville's motivation for returning to public service. It could be a lot like Kremen's, a nice big pension to vest.

You can't, after seeing the fat on that hog up close and in person, not think about getting yourself a meal-ticket on the gravy train.

But Pete's already made his deal, gone full bore Republican, and has the developers behind him. Kelli's not going to shoulder him out of the way at that trough.

But those folks would be happy to get rid of the mayor now. Only reason they supported him last time was he weren't named McShane. Gotta make you chuckle though. They actually had a better deal with the other Dan!

One of the funnier things I've heard lately, was a remark attributed to Kelli grousing about voters and her recent fall from favor. She complained, after compromising her principles all these years, conservatives still picked a Republican over her.

Guess you could call that, the Blue-dog Blues!

But then, I thought principles were what you stood for even when it meant the goin' would be rough. If you don't stand up for 'em, maybe they're not really your principles.

So, there's the queen bee of local dems, and patron saint of the David Syre Memorial Wilderness, still lookin' to sting Pike.

Then you've got the bald Russian, still trying to foist off his development on the city and hoping to knock off the mayor and get into the UGA.

They're joined by the Fairhaven "progressives" who feel snubbed or disenchanted because the mayor hasn't sufficiently embraced them or adequately pursued their favorite causes.

And of course, there's the good ol' boys from the BIA.

Have I left anyone out? That's the Draft Linville for Mayor movement in a nutshell. As schizophrenic union as might be imagined.

I'm sure the BIA wants to push hard and save the 100 Acre Woods, start enviornmental remediation and keep more yachts off the waterfront. And certainly, they'll be opposed to sprawl, expanding UGAs, and impairing resource lands. Above all, they surely want to save the city's water supply from development!

Hell, the draft Linville crowd doesn't even really care if it's Linville. It's really anybody but Pike for them, and they're thinking Buchanan's just an also-ran. So, bye bye Barry. We ain't gonna let principles get in the way of beatin' the mayor.

Terrified at the prospects, you have the conservation voters desperately hoping to head-off the race. After the last elections, the election of the worst county council in memory, and faced with the return of Crawford and Kremen to continue their damage, the prospect of the developers taking over city hall is too much.

And I'll bet Pike's wondering, whatever possessed him to take a stand and piss these people off! Well sorry, Danny Boy, the goin's gonna be gettin rough.

complete article

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

A Seemingly Unseemly Side of Sam

Sam Crawford's oft repeated pledge, to protect property owners from the egregious regulations of government, and his undying defense of property rights even where they offend the public interest, seem to have, if embarrassingly, put our fearless council leader front and center again.

And again, his Little Shop of Favors, Emerald Lake Consulting, appears to be where the rubber meets the road, in this instance, as usual, it's the vehicle for the constituent to pay Sam for his representation.

According to reports, a company inappropriately known as Standard Properties (inappropriate as it clearly appears they're really sub-standard properties) was just fined some $21,000 for myriad zoning infractions for property they owned and rented along the Guide Meridian. Still more fines and violations are expected as other locations belonging to the company, owned by one Murray D. Wood, are investigated.

County officers received a complaint about the property at the end of November and began their investigation shortly thereafter, finding a business operating out of a cargo container, and people living in illegal apartments that lacked windows and sufficient doors to allow them to escape a fire. These just some amongst a long list of other violations.

One might say Wood was something of a "slumlord."

Being so discovered apparently prompted Wood to seek legal help; and, it seems that took him to Sam Crawford and Belcher-Swanson. (not necessarily in that order)

Nonetheless, and notwithstanding such savvy advisors, the fines did roll.

How many readers think it was our council chairman, Crawford, who advised the Health Department of the sewage that was surfacing there?

You have to wonder how Mr. Wood discovered Sam's quiet little consultancy? Was it Sam's confederate, Jack Swanson, as Wood's attorney, who advised of Crawford's usefulness? Curious. Did Sam introduce Wood to Jack, or did Jack introduce Wood to Sam?

I don't think Wood introduced Sam to Jack. They know each other pretty well!

According to Crawford, he hasn't interceded directly with Planning & Development Services on Wood's behalf. That's reassuring. Seems Sam has become sensitive to these conflicts of interest and may stop abusing the planning department staff for free help, and consideration for his clients.

It's been months now since Crawford offered to disclose the financial dealings of Emerald Lake Consultants. Months with nary a whisper of information. But, we see, it's still business as usual for Sam and his pals.

Rest assured fellow citizens, surely our ever attentive county prosecutor must be more than a little uncomfortable with such a system and its potential for abuse. He must be quietly investigating these matters and will certainly be subpoenaing Emerald Lake Consultants' bank records to assure us no graft's being practiced here. Sure he is!

But local conservatives must be very proud of their man Sam, who clearly seems the unwavering defender of property rights and property owners ... no matter how unseemly.

complete article