Posted by: sweeneyblog | September 7, 2012

Friday Odds and Ends: Rising Stars, Jobs, and a Police Chief

Hello Loyal Readers,

It is time again for the Friday Odds and Ends. It will be a bit lighter today because I’m all metaphorically hungover after gorging myself on political speeches for the last two weeks. I love political conventions, on both sides of the aisle, because you get to preview some of the up and coming political talent.

1) To that end, I really recommend you watch some of the speeches of people who are running for big offices in the future. On the Republican side, Condoleezza Rice spoke quite eloquently and is clearly preparing to do something bigger in the next couple of years. She is currently a professor at Stanford University, but she owns a house in Birmingham, Alabama and could pretty easily run for governor in 2014 when the current governor, fellow Republican Robert Bentley, is up for re-election.

On the other side of the aisle, I point you toward Brian Schweitzer, Democratic Governor of Montana. You want someone who is authentically blue-collar mountain west Democrat? Schweitzer is your man. He is on my short list of “People Running in 2016” and he should be on yours.

2) Job report came out today and I am still amazed that people mess this up when they report the story. Since March 2010, we have had pretty much two straight years of net job growth. Each month there are more jobs out there than the month before and almost all of these jobs are coming from the private sector. Even though the number of jobs gained fluctuates, we are still gaining jobs. It is like someone running up to you each month and handing you some cash. Some months it is $50, some months it is $5, but you know what? They are still giving you money. I am constantly disappointed when the Jobs Report numbers are framed as “disappointing.” I’m not disappointed that our economy is growing. Sure, I want it to grow faster, but it is going up – steadily – and this is something we should all be proud of.

Jobs Report numbers

3) Finally, a bit of local rumors. Got that? Rumors. Todd Ramsey, Bellingham Police chief, announced his retirement rather suddenly a couple days ago. Word on the inside is that the Bellingham Police Guild had come to Mayor Kelli Linville with some concerns about his job performance recently, and when Kelli asked to meet with him to address some of those concerns . . . he suddenly requested to take some unplanned vacation time. I will be digging into this a bit more, but a sudden retirement at the ripe age of . . . 47 . . . doesn’t quite pass the smell test. More details to come, hopefully.

That’s it. Short and sweet. By the way, if you want more follow up on the SWAMPGraph, check out the post over on the Whatcom Excavator, I’m pretty sure I doubled their views in the last couple of days and they put up a pretty entertaining response in the comments. I just might have to make myself another achievement award.



  1. In my very soul I’ve always felt that BPD is totally corrupt and rife with the kind of assholes that definitely should NOT be in a police force, and I would not at all be surprised if the chief has been a part of that.

  2. I’ve read that this is the best August jobs figure since 2006.

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