Thursday, December 6, 2012

The Party's Over

From my perspective, neither political party has been able to offer anything constructive on local issues like the CAOs, and personally, I know many people from both parties who have opposed the numerous fatal flaws in our CAO process. Frankly, I think most voters here are independent anyway, with tendencies certain ways depending on the issue at hand.

Nevertheless, there are die-hard partisan candidates around here who attempt to muster support from party loyalists for their positions. I suppose that is to be expected. I understand why struggling candidates would want to curry favor with the political parties, but I cannot understand the converse. Why would the political parties want to be associated with some of our public figures?

Why on earth would any party want to be associated with anyone having a connection to the Friends of the San Juans, for instance?  For that matter, why would any authentic environmentalist want to be associated with them either? Why would any political party want to be associated with our lollyscrambling, people-hating, flat-earth-society Clowncil? Most of our councillors have demonstrated on a weekly basis that they are tin-eared, scientifically illiterate, fiscally irresponsible, legally challenged, poorly educated, uncaring, haughty, and dysfunctional. When did those become values that any political party would want to embrace?

A political party would have to have a death wish to associate itself with some of our public figures.

Below is a response by Howie Rosenfeld (posted on Facebook) to a letter written by John Evans.  You decide who poses the better argument about partisanship.


Please what Council rules are you referring to? The Charter only mandates non-partisan elections, not non-partisan anything else: candidates, endorsements, etc. If you are referring to the spirit of non-partisanship, while that may be a noble concept, it is not a rule. 

My race in particular was a good example of a flaw to even that noble concept. Because of my support for the CAO and my opponent’s opposition, he was generously supported by members of special interest groups and individuals who, with a few exceptions, are mostly property rights types, typically Republican leaning. You can see this from his PDC documents online. There are many developers and realtors as donors. Yes, there was no Republican endorsement but he was de facto their favored choice. He was invited to the Red Barn and I wasn’t. So in this care was the non-partisan label being used more as a fig leaf over what was more of a partisan issue?

My Democratic endorsement didn’t overcome the onslaught of anti-CAO sentiment in these District races, but it is liable to be more important in the upcoming countywide races. Are you trying to lay some groundwork to make partisan endorsements unacceptable? I don’t blame you. It is to the advantage of the Republicans, developers, Builder’s Association, etc. to do so.

Meanwhile, other Charter counties like Whatcom have politically endorsed candidates. It is not unusual and certainly not illegal.

Howie Rosenfeld


  1. Pissed Off DemocratDecember 6, 2012 at 10:59 PM

    It's fascinating to me that Howie assumes that all realtors and developers are Republicans. Is Wally Gudgell a Republican? I could name several other realtors and developers who probably view themselves as liberal Democrats and environmentalists who, unlike Wally, detested the CAO process.

    I also know many people labelled as Republicans by the Howie's of the world because of their CAO opposition. Those of us who are Democrats and who despised the CAO process because of its corruption, because of its community-destroying provisions, and because of its baseless environmental claims, we have been betrayed by Howie, Lovel, and Jamie. I am sickened by nearly everything they say.

  2. As far as this Democrat is concerned, Democrats who support Jamie, Lovel, or Howie, that's just as bad as Republicans who supported Dubya Bush. It is just as untenable, in my opinion.

  3. "Condescending @$$hole" isn't the right phrase...
    but it's the first one that comes to mind.

    The name "Clowncil" has been justifiably earned.

    Blue ribbion, olympic class clown.

  4. With a nod to E.M Forster, this post should be entitled "Howie's End".

    I am, though my room with a view has just been appraised with a value 25% lower than in 2011, Nick Power.

  5. Yet Another Angry DemocratDecember 7, 2012 at 7:39 AM

    Howie, I fear you will never get this through your mean and sour little mind but it is worth repeating: Hell hath no fury like a Liberal scorned. I voted for Obama, but not for the likes of you or Lovell Pratfall.

    You melodramatic progressive pansy. You are no Democrat.

    You and Pratt tried to wrapped yourself around the Democratic Party like Jimmie Swaggart around Jesus or Nixon around the American flag. All the while selling our remaining civil rights off for a few lumps of coal disguised as grants.

    Rich Peterson won handily -- a true nonpartisan, while his opponent wallowed in party favors and endorsement, even bringing in Ranker and Morris to campaign on her behalf. That is beyond disgusting. And it did not work here. Look at his list of endorsements. Knuckle dragging Republican Neanderthals? Nope, lots of Democrats actually, along with many others who might pull the handle the other way more often then not. In otherwords, a nonpartisan candidate receiving nonpartisan endorsements from independently minded islanders.

    Do you not sense a pattern? Are you that blind and simple minded?

    The elements that have captured our local Democratic machine fell off the extremist left edge years ago. The rest -- and vast majority -- of local moderate Democrats are finally waking up to your chicanery.

    You and your ilk sir have abused us. You have used our inclination to prefer the Democratic party against us, while milking our trust, corrupting our government, and taking our civil right5s. But we see through you and your Friends now. And we are incensed.

    For shame, sir, for shame.

  6. Rich Peterson won by about 100 votes.

  7. I just don't get the party thing. Miller and especially Fralick are probably right leaning. Pratt, Rosenfeld, and Stephens are partisan Democrats. They all stink. As far as I am concerned, the CAOs were the mutant eco-monster from the bowels of the dregs of the losers of both parties.

  8. Yet Another Angry DemocratDecember 7, 2012 at 8:35 AM

    To my point. They are small districts, and yes he won handily by the percentages despite the huge partisan effort to unseat him, the ripping up of road signs, the threats, even the large demonstrations in that district, bonfires in the night and so on. Good grief.

    Margins in the recent San Juan elections were in the same range, and for the same reasons, the Democratic machine was in full red alert all the way through, but still couldn't muster the votes.

    The Orcas "landslide" is a different matter, curious how that will play out. I wonder how many votes Patty Miller would have received, had she actually run a real campaign for office. Would she run for a party endorsement as well?

  9. Jarman and Forlenza didn't win because of Republican support. They won because they are not Pratt and Rosenfeld. What have Pratt and Rosenfeld done for this County except sell it down the river? It is not difficult to understand at all, but if Pratt and Rosenfeld expect association the the Democratic Party to absolve them of all their sins of omission and commission, then they are not expecting absolution. They are expecting a miracle.

  10. Count me in as an Angry Democrat!December 7, 2012 at 9:44 AM

    Howie suffers from the fallacy of the false dichotomy. Not an unusual situation in the US, and de rigueur here on Lopez:

    On Lopez you're either in lock-step with the Fiends and Kwiaht, or you are a Tea-Party member. There are no alternatives (this is not hyperbole, I've been called that here on Lopez for simply reading the Trojan Heron).

    I worry that the Pratt and Howie will squeak by in a county-wide vote with the Lopez vote sweeping them in. I don't think there is much chance of changing Lopezian minds in the short term, so, come on San Juan and Orcas! You've got to do your part in being a moderating force in this County.

  11. One of Will Rogers' famous quotes is a description of pancakes that were "so thin they only had one side."

    Speaking as a Lopez Democrat, I do not like associating with my fellow home-island Democrats because they engage in purity tests about local issues. As the last commenter noted, the primary purity test is whether you are a believer in the Friends or KWIAHT. I would also add the LCLT to that list. If yes, you believe, you're viewed (and treated) as a Democrat. If not, you are viewed (and treated) as a Republican Tea Partier.

    The Lopez Democratic Tent is so narrow that it only has one side.

    As a Democrat, I feel that is a pity. The ingrained prejudice and intolerance among Lopez Democrats (something we criticize Republicans for all the time) is leading to our own downfall.

  12. Wow. These comments are really interesting. Thanks everyone!

  13. The thing to remember, unpleasant as it can be to speak against the grain on Lopez, is that it is only a very few people who create and maintain that caustic atmosphere. Most Lopez Islanders either don't pay attention to any of it. And we are blessed with many level headed, fair minded people of all ideological stripes. They just don't get the airtime the others do. Given the idiosyncratic nature of Lopez politics, however, I do understand the angst on SJ and Orcas regarding the reversion to the commissioner structure. I vote we dredge up a moderate, rational Lopez Commissioner candidate and see what happens.

  14. What is so crazy about partisan candidacy at the county level is that it means NOTHING. It is not like these council members are going to do anything based on the party platforms. I mean seriously is a council member going to weigh in on abortion, or general tax policy, or welfare reform or any issue that a national party has staked out? Heck no. They are deluding themselves. Those decisions and policies are for the contemplation of politicians WAY above their paygrade (err, ok not that much above their actual pay anymore -- but you know what I mean. Accordingly, there is NO VALUE to the label that a party moniker brings to a candidate. It is just pure pandering and claiming to have some sanctification from a party who couldn't give two hoots what we do in our county. Frankly, I hope candidates run and seek (tacitly or overtly) the support of a particular party -- because that is the candidate I will not vote for, and that is the candidate that the other guy can make eat his endorsement.

    I am, independently, Nick Power

  15. Howie can only hold two thoughts in his head at one time. You are either with him or the devil. You are either Ron Zee/Lovel Pratt so-far-left-it's-beyond-Green Democrat, or a Tea Party, Bile-thumpin' homosexual hatin' Republican. You cannot think for yourself. That would require THINKING, something that Howie is not known for. Lovel and Howie have to believe that they lost due to a vast left right wing conspiracy, otherwise they have to deal with the fact that people of all stripes found their smugness repulsive.


    Independent, Gay Marriage Approving, Obama-Voting, Citizen Ashamed That We Had Pratt and Rosenfeld Representing Us

  16. WOW! The TH hits it out of the park again.

    Don't understand the "Tea Party" reference used here as this element is so over with. Clowncouncil is getting tired too.

    What is LCLT?

    We need to stay focused on John Evans comments in the Island Guardian.

    Candidates who want to seek party endorsements do so at their own risk.

    Go ahead, but do not expect to be elected.

    Howie needs to be very quiet, or his wife is going to get tossed just like him.

    (but it has been fun with you Howie. You are truly, well, "one of a kind.")

    There is some great clear thinking going on here at TH, keep it going.

  17. Apparently "Tea Party" is now some sort of local code word for "Neanderthal Right Wing Male Who Eats Raw Meat And Must Be Shunned". It's a thought-terminating cliche at this point (as per Lifton).

    The ideas of limited government, fiscal responsibility, personal responsibility, and the rule of law seem well out of fashion in the County these days, so I can see why the demonization occurs.

    Did you ever notice how our County Council or certain members of the Planning Commission consistently roll their eyes whenever someone simply points out text from the US or Washington Constitution, or even the County Comp Plan?

    Musty old reactionary documents...

  18. LCLT stands for Lopez Community Land Trust, which is the organization run by Sandy Bishop and Rhea Miller (you know, Jamie's handlers). They run five high-density affordable housing complexes on Lopez.

    Didn't Howie mention something about developers? ;-)

  19. It DOES seem strange that the only people "developing" land are the subsidized "affordable housing" folks. The rest of us build one house at a time, and pay for permits and experts and all that. The affordable housing people get exempted from a lot of that annoyance.

  20. Reportedly the Friends/Dems had a crisis management meeting the day after we threw the bums out, and it was decided that Lovel would run on her "record" of Olympia connections. So who did the Friends/Dems choose to run as their puppets on Orcas and Lopez? I can hardly wait.

  21. Reportedly the Friends/Dems had a crisis management meeting the day after we threw the bums out, and it was decided that Lovel would run on her "record" of Olympia connections. So who did the Friends/Dems choose to run as their puppets on Orcas and Lopez? I can hardly wait.