Speaking of money in politics, it seems obvious from this week’s election results that billionaires come in very handy. Those seven-figure supporters don’t guarantee victory, there are a few losers around who can attest to that, but they sure make things easier. If you want to run an initiative, for instance, it helps to have millions to get it on the ballot and millions to campaign. It helps to have a stockpile to avoid the time-consuming hassle of groveling for donations. On the flip side, an opponent with billionaire backers ...
Most of us just assume that given enough money you can buy votes, and therefore buy elections and purchase political power and influence. We know that political advertising has irresistible persuasive power, enough to lure the malleable swing voters who very much wish to be lured, the bloc that so often decides elections. Politicians seem to think this is the case, judging by how much time they spend begging for contributions.
The people of Chelan, both civic and commercial interests, genuinely and fervently wanted Lake Chelan to stay a foot higher in September. The higher lake would enhance the appeal of their greatest asset at a most beautiful time of the year. The Chelan County PUD, which lowers the lake in the fall to capture runoff and manage its Lake Chelan hydroelectric project, was asked to accommodate this request.
You probably have never heard of the William D. Ruckelshaus Center. No matter. It doesn’t seek a high profile. But it represents an approach to solving problems and conflicts that you should know better. It provides the means for adversaries to come together, to find the resources that can point to possible solutions and to compromise. It endeavors to do this for both small conflicts and huge longstanding, seemingly neverending public battles.
On the walk to work this morning I passed the usual groups of children trudging to school, headed toward the elementary school to the south and the middle school to the west. They must be out for some early activity or the breakfast shift. Many heft backpacks filled, I presume, with books, heavy enough to cause them to waddle like little bipedal turtles, if there were such a thing. I had to swerve around one lad who had pencil in hand, writing in a notebook as he walked, deep in ...
It is not news. Washington’s economy, as it is in most every modern industrial state, is dependent on moving goods and people from place to place efficiently. Time really is money. Time lost, with products or employees stuck in traffic, is money lost. Money lost reduces profits, from which all our financial strength derives.
Our friends at Upper Valley MEND (Meeting Each Need with Dignity) in Leavenworth are doing some nice community partnerships to help those in need. What they are doing could be replicated in other communities in support of building more compassionate and resilient communities.
Wenatchee may have the distinction of being the smallest community in America to offer a leadership training program by ONE.org, an organization dedicated to alleviating poverty and preventable diseases across the globe by mobilizing grass roots support.
Next Saturday morning a carpool of the willing, volunteers and Rotarians, will set out from the Grace Lutheran Church parking lot on their way to the Methow Valley, to face the scars of the horrible Carlton Complex fires and do what they can to help.
Background checks are a sensible precaution when selling firearms. They are no cure for gun violence and mayhem, and no threat to the rights of legitimate gun owners, but it is possible they might keep some guns out of unwanted hands, namely away from convicted criminals and people with a certified mental illness. That in some degree is a boost for public safety.
This will be Quincy Valley Medical Center’s year of decision. The hospital lost $800,000 last year, managers say. It owes nearly $4 million to Grant County and the county treasurer says if the debt is not reduced he’ll recommend the commissioners approve no more hospital expenditures. Comes that reckoning, and Quincy Valley Medical Center would have to cut services so severely it essentially will cease to be.
Initiative 1351 on the current ballot is an irresponsible, self-serving, budget bashing measure that exploits a soft spot with voters while hiding the enormous, untenable price they will be forced to pay. Worse, the research suggests all that expense and sacrifice will bring little or no improvement in the education of their children. Nothing.
I do not worry about Ebola. It all looks scary with those poor people dying in Africa and all the horrible suffering, but I do not worry about it. The experts in communicable disease tell us that everything’s fine, that my chance of contracting Ebola is less than being stuck by lightning three times during my lunch break Friday. You can’t catch it except when an infected person shows symptoms, like fever, and even then you only get it through contact with their contaminated bodily fluids, like blood and vomit ...