Posted by: sweeneyblog | September 26, 2014

Friday Odds and Ends: Panic, Preparation and Public Access

Hello Loyal Readers,

We are counting down to the final month of campaign season so prepare for the barrage of flyers, television ads and ridiculous accusations. As always, I will help you sort out the verifiable from the conjecture. Which brings us to our first Odd and End:

According to the Whatcom Republicans - this is Freddy Kruger

According to the Whatcom Republicans – this is Freddy Krueger

Whatcom Republicans are in full-panic mode over the potential involvement of Tom Steyer in the 42nd. Tom Steyer donated several thousand dollars to Washington Conservation Voters last year and some of that money was spent as independent expenditures in the County Council races. But as I pointed out after the Democratic sweep last year, it was not the glossy WCV mailers that won that race but the efficient and well-organized ground game that turned out voters in South Bellingham. One would hope that that the County Republicans “screw their courage to the sticking-place” and try doing some voter outreach for a change.

In the other Washington, Attorney General Eric Holder is preparing to leave the White House and the top rumored prospect for his replacement is from our home turf. U.S. Attorney Jenny Durkan from Seattle is on the short list to replace Holder. Durkan made headlines in the last couple of years cleaning house with the Seattle Police Department, pushing for vigorous reforms. She has been a leader on cyber sercurity reforms, and helped unravel a terrorist plot to blow up a military recruiting office in Seattle. She is also a lesbian – I mention this last because it is the least important part of her resume but would be one of the more higher profile LGBT appointments in the history of the United States.

Finally, my hometown of Olympia is celebrating the upgrade of their public access station, which just completed the conversion to High Definition. Using the funds provided by Comcast for a separate public access station, Thurston Community Television (TCTV) has been providing opportunities for locals to produce high quality television, gaining vital technical skills and documenting their communities growth for over twenty years.

Unlike the proposal by the Mayor of Bellingham which tethers our public access to a city-run television station, TCTV is a free-standing non-profit, allowing the organization the flexibility to charge membership dues, conduct fundraising and grow from a single broadcast channel to four station sharing content from around the community. Perhaps TCTV’s continued success will be a role model as we develop our video capabilities as a community.

The weather has finally returned to normal, leaving plenty of time for catching up on your favorite monster movies. I’m looking forward to that remake of Godzilla featuring our former County Executive.



  1. Suggested caption on the Godzilla remake: “With all due respect to my esteemed colleague, I think it would be fair to say that he has a conflict of interest in the county’s invasive species program.”

  2. “Whatcom Republicans are in full-panic mode over the potential involvement of Tom Steyer in the 42nd”. In your dreams Riley!

    • See panicked comments on this very blog from recent driving expert and Republican volunteer David Onkels.

  3. Thanks for the Public access TV plug Riley. As you may know, Dennis Lane at Whatcom Community Television and Communication (WCTC) and I have been plugging for it since we arrived here in 1995. Olympia’s work has been the model of “how to do it here”. Mayor Kelli’s actual step into the water is the first and bravest while Comcast and others have continually waved the “DANGER” sign to keep elected officials from taking advantage of using the cable agreement and agreement $ to allow development of viable local broadcast capability. Terry Borneman and Stan Snapp have been good allies in this effort. Hopefully, it isn”t too little too late for people to understand how valuable local programming can be to telling our stories.

  4. Ah yes, bye-bye Eric and as Dave Lindorff says at Counterpunch “Good riddance!”.

    Lindorff goes on to say, “A corporate lawyer with the Wall Street law firm Covington & Burling, Holder will be remembered for his timid defense of civil rights, his overseeing. and even encouragement of the massive militarization of the nation’s police forces, his anti-First Amendment efforts to pursue not just whistleblowers but the journalists who use them, threatening both with jail and in fact jailing a number of them (particularly in the case of whistleblower extraordinaire Edward Snowden, and Wikileaks journalist Julian Assange, both of whom reportedly face US treason charges), and his weak enforcement of environmental protection laws.”

    And further that Holder “will be best remembered for his overt announcement that there would be no attempt to prosecute the criminals at the top of the nation’s biggest so-called “too-big-to-fail” banks, whose brazen crimes of theft, deceit, fraud and perjury during the Bush/Cheney years and beyond sank not just the US but the global economy into a crisis which is still with us.”

    Holder’s record will be tough to beat but I am sure Obama and the Senate are up to the task of setting the lowest bar possible while making the appointment process into great theater featuring a faux struggle between the wicked Republicans and the virtuous Dems. As for Durkan, what better means to neutralize her effectiveness than by appointing her Attorney General. Read more of Lindorff on Holder at:

  5. To the Democrat any lie that advances their cause is,
    by definition, the truth. – EVAN SAYET

    • Zzzzzzzzzzz

  6. […] neither candidate delved into Ericksen’s ongoing ethical issues, they did quarrel over the latest Republican boogeyman, Tom Steyer. “I don’t have any California billionaires sending me big checks so yes, our system should […]

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