Saturday, November 30, 2013

FONSI Disconnect

Back in October, we mentioned that the National Monument had hard-armored part of a primo pocket-beach on Lopez ... Watmough Bay, and not even the insiders who had sat in Secretary Salazar's office to hatch the National Monument scheme knew about it ahead of time. No structures were at risk at Watmough Bay. Moreover, the shoreline consultant used by the Friends to oppose nearly every shoreline activity proposed by private homeowners in San Juan County -- Coastal Geologic Services -- performed some of the work and design. Before proceeding with the construction, the Bureau of Land Management conducted an Environmental Assessment of the shoreline stabilization and reached a "Finding of No Significant Impact" or FONSI. They also conducted an EA for trail-related site work that resulted in another FONSI.

This shoreline stabilization work is exactly the kind of project that would have been opposed by the Friends (and Coastal Geologic Services) if a private homeowner had tried to do it. There would have been howls about impacts. We have reached a state of affairs in our county where it is easier to do shoreline projects inside the National Monument than outside. On top of that, via the SMP, the county then imposes buffers on all National Monument shorelines whether they are armored or not.


  1. Also, this occurred during the government shutdown. While this was happening, we were prohibited from going into the National Parks in the islands, but we could go to Watmough and watch the government contractors armor the beach.

  2. SMP disconnect too.

  3. Anybody know what the ouncil is doing re the proposed SMP update? ? I thought we elected two of those guys with a view to putting a stop to such nonsense.

  4. I love this place, it never ends. Its time to just admit how screwd up this place really is. We need to change the name. Instead of San Juan County we should have a name more fitting. I propose Hypocritical County as our official name. We could get a nice big grant for the change. We could now have a Hypocritical area ordinance. It even has the word critical in the name. How great would that be? Welcome to the Hypocritical Islands. Were so glad you came! They said Hypocritacally. Hypocritical building department, county council,??? can you think of any?

  5. Remember that all our shorelines have been designated as critical, so Watmough Bay isn't any more critical than anywhere else. It's no more important than the ferry terminal on any of the islands. Just ask the Planning Commission members who said so.

    Bob Gamble - Kwiaht
    Steve Adams - Port of Lopez
    Barbara Dehlendorf - wife of David
    Barbara Thomas - Planning Commissioner for 14 years
    Karin Agosta - former President of the San Juan Preservation Trust

  6. Is the Port of Lopez a well-known local environmental activist group?

  7. they don't need no stinkin' permits,,they got badges

  8. @10:26

    Local dysfunctional public body.

  9. @9:48

    For Adams, you could have mentioned PC member for 8 years and Pratt supporter too.

  10. The shoreline plan is turd too. I'm not sure why it hasn't received its share of attention. It downzoned a lot of already developed parcels to "conservation." I don't know how that will play out. It's sizing up to be another playground for abuse by the Friends. It's open season on humans. No bag limit either.

  11. Remember, no other Federal agencies could possibly have exciting but quiet plans for the San Juans, the streets of Friday Harbor or that National Monument boundary wrapped around our collectivist necks like a noose.

    As long as our special children are paid to get the rest of us to shut up, life is good. The Hypocritical Area Ordinance seems like common sense these days.

    Quislings and collaborators, betraying the rural resistance. They'd turn in grandma if the price were right.

  12. If you have any viable candidate to run against Jaime next year, any road to victory would involve having Gordy not endorse the candidate.
    Actually, if he wanted to help, he should endorse Jamie. That would drive some supporters the other way.

  13. @10:26, 10:43, 10:56

    Well, no, what I meant to say is that, as a Port Commissioner, Adams should be interested in some marine development for economic purposes, and that responsibility would seem to be in contradiction to taking a position of all shorelines being critical for ecosystem purposes. I don't see how you can support both unless you are ... y'know ... a hypocrite.

  14. No problem, when Brian was running, Gordy was campaigning for Jamie as the only adult the room.

  15. Linked to the TH article is the environmental assessment for site improvements (parking lot, bathrooms, ditch cleaning) and there is a FONSI for the beach work. The FONSI refers to an environmental assessment for the beach that apparently is not described in the linked environmental assessment. All that said, there is no mention of the cultural and anthropological attributes of the area directly behind the beach (a pioneer's berm that impounds a small pond [it's not a wetland]). That said, the environmental assessment for the beach stabilization could have been accomplished by removal of the anthropologic features (artificial levee) but then it is completely understandable that CGS would have not noticed any of the historic changes to the vicinity of the project - too bad - the beach was performing well before CGS recommended anchoring large man-cut logs to the beach gravels and sands (by the way, what was the mortality rate of the fish kill as a result of destruction of eggs on the beach?). This is another fine example where CGS' measured recommendations with full-on blinders will not work out well. We'll be monitoring the beach to see how much it suffers in the coming years. Also, isn't the County the lead agency for a project impacting a beach full of fish eggs?

  16. Here is the link to the Shoreline Stabilization EA. Apologies. I fixed the links in the main post too. Thank you for bringing it to my attention.

  17. @1:13

    The "lead agency" construct does not apply to federal projects on federal land. Projects that are subject to SEPA, a state act, would identify a lead agency, but the feds don't follow SEPA, they follow NEPA.

  18. The EA impact analysis considered potential impacts to abalone, Olympia oyster, sea otter, gray whale, orca, stellar sea lion, and and pacific harbor porpoise but no other aquatic species. No mention of forage fish or their eggs or any of the other aquatic species, such as eel grass, that homeowners are usually tortured about -- by CGS and the Friends.

  19. Federal lands management need not consider state or local statutes or ordinances.

    Any questions?

    I'm beginning to sense that there is one thing the radical left and the radical right have in common: they both adore big government especially if its paying for the big planning grant or big lease.

  20. Re the EA.........there is no reference to an archaeologist reviewing or monitoring the project, there is no reference to the fact that state and federal law requires a permit from the army corps, fish and wildlife and ecology, and county planning.

    This was a complete and blatant disregard for the rules those who live here are forced to comply with.

    So, they will probably do what everyone does...ask for forgiveness, which I'm sure they will get. the corps and the state archaeologist can play hardball, and so can the indians.

    Keep us posted, TH

  21. I will not say why, but I had to dig a hole in the beach, a beach we actually own in private ownership, unlike the one on Lopez.

    It required an Army Corp permit and State and San Juan County permits.

    As you might imagine it took a couple of years and many, many consultant reports to get an OK to dig the hole. It was not a big hole or a deep hole.

    One thing was clear along with an impossible time line in the resulting permit to avoid any noise that might upset nesting eaglets.

    The clear thing was that NO mechanical equipment would be allowed on the beach. The hole had to be dug by hand. It was.

    So I was thrilled to see the large excavator with the wheelbarrow tucked under the leaking hydraulics over there on Lopez.

    Why thrilled? Because after you, as a home owner, jump through all the hoops and legit science you still get screwed while these pictures and the FONSI crap, show and document what I have always suspected. Total heresy.

    All this on(let me say it) a PRISTINE beach.

    Perhaps some of us are not nuts. It all does come together. Part of government = green light; private citizen = getting totally screwed.

    And now we managed to elect County Commissioners who are continuing and embracing all of the above.

    Let us rid ourselves of these milquetoast jerks.

  22. @5:29 Who should we run for County Commissioner next election?

  23. 5:57 A working wife and mother, that's who.

    For those who scoff, let me run it down for you. This lady gets the vote of her sisters County wide, she is not strident, but she is a woman other women can respect.

    The male vote? Well it would help a lot if she looked healthy. (Sorry about this but reality is almost all women in congress have had work done.)

    Add ons: Local family history, horses, chickens and a hard working husband in the back yard.

    Next up; a young man. Guilt and connection free, this guy is smart, is clean down to his back teeth (please note the woman does not get this exam) and he is truly independent.

    All this guy needs is evidence he does care about his community and he does the reading.

    That's a quickie 5:57. Great question, and I hope others will offer much better analysis than mine. Goodness we need someone, anyone.

    My dream ticket would be several candidates all under forty years old; both women and men.

  24. @ 6:50 PM

    Oh Yes. I don't really care what their personal political preferences are as long as they are problem solvers, know how to work with others and compromise, have worked in the real world, are building stake here, preferably under 40 and not drinking any extremist koolaid left or right.

    More than just a Lopez commissioner but a movement for all offices around here, Friday Harbor mayor and council, port commissioners, library, everything to 40th District representatives. Consider it a five year project to hose out the stalls.

  25. While we're on the subject of disconnect, we heard nothing from our friends, not even Janet Alderton, about the use of herbicide by the National Park Service at American Camp. HERBICIDE on 1.5 acres. Do you know what would have happened had a mere citizen proposed to do that?

  26. Here is the truthiness: Around here it has gotten to the point where the extremists both left and right are now nearly identical in their love of big government, and authoritarian tendencies to bully, shout down and demonize anyone who questions them. These extremist factions are so similar in ways that matter that we can now see evidence of power sharing between them. They have more mutual interest than you might think. It all boils down to one big protection racket.

  27. @ 8:41

    I'm puzzled by your power-sharing comment.

    Here we do have the eco-left in bed with the feds -- National Park Service (which funds Ron Zee's Madrona Institute) and EPA (which funds almost everyone on that side of the spectrum) and NOAA which also funds a lot of state people always snooping around.

    The BLM never seemed like a good fit with the eco-left; seems like it does what it wants to do without consulting every county, tribe, citizen, "stakeholder."

  28. $800,000 for National Park improvements here announced--"Additionally the money will provide paid summer work experiences for island youths via the San Juan Conservation Corps (SJCC), founded two years ago by the park and the Madrona Institute, Taylor said."

    The Madrona Institute. Ron Zee.

  29. The BLM "Monument Director" position has been publicly advertised as well.
    Wonder what Zee or FOSJ stooge gets the nod for that?

  30. @ 2:03
    Who knows if BLM consulted county, tribe, citizen, "stakeholder".

  31. With and amongst the newfound wealth of hypocrisy, the best example certainly must be the prosecuting attorney, and his executioners.
    Where privacy certainly has been in the past a driving factor in the choice many of us made to reside here in the San Juan's. This elected office, delivers a wealth of activities bent not on protection of victims of crime or protection of that cause for which we chose to depend. No this elected office is devoted to the cause of denying those elements we consider as monument and testiment to the values we depend. This office is the driver and force behind ther ridiculous cao's with the rediculous reasonable use exception in protection and the only protection of the rights we hold in property. This some consideration of due process perhaps? I mean really you've got to respect the gall of this office, to express such hanious solutions to defend us. To allow a table of possible exempt activity within what was once a protected curtilage of your residence. One thing for sure there is not a councilman can hold an erection in front of him, or them. Whether they notice "which they must" previous and present councilmen will not stand up and say "NO" you will not instigate such activity against the citizens on my watch. San Juan county government would be the perfect subject of a new sitcom. I bet it could run for at least 7 seasons straight
    Sent from my iPad

  32. With and amongst the newfound wealth of hypocrisy, the best example certainly must be the prosecuting attorney, and his executioners.
    Where privacy certainly has been in the past a driving factor in the choice many of us made to reside here in the San Juan's. This elected office, delivers a wealth of activities bent not on protection of victims of crime or protection of that cause for which we chose to depend. No this elected office is devoted to the cause of denying those elements we consider as monument and testiment to the values we depend. This office is the driver and force behind ther ridiculous cao's with the rediculous reasonable use exception in protection and the only protection of the rights we hold in property. This some consideration of due process perhaps? I mean really you've got to respect the gall of this office, to express such hanious solutions to defend us. To allow a table of possible exempt activity within what was once a protected curtilage of your residence. One thing for sure there is not a councilman can hold an erection in front of him, or them. Whether they notice "which they must" previous and present councilmen will not stand up and say "NO" you will not instigate such activity against the citizens on my watch. San Juan county government would be the perfect subject of a new sitcom. I bet it could run for at least 7 seasons straight
    Sent from my iPad

  33. The Tribes should care about this transgression onto Watmough beach alot. When the Tribes learn that their sacred beach has been stomped on ... they pretty much can trade for whatever they want to trade for from the feds. Did you all know that Russel Barsh said (paraphrase) "on this beach it is believed that 100 Tribal spirits inhabit the beach and welcome all who visit" (except 235 excavators). From what is visible in the picture, it appears that the so-called "repair" is in an area of natural rock fall, so Coastal Geologic Services is placing an unnatural log on a modified beach. Now that is realllllly environmental. Someone call the Friends and ask Stephanie Buffum to bring her night vision googles and take pictures. Let's monitor the beach with photo documentation so we can demonstrate how much damage or how ineffective the big log has been ... ???? Thanks for taking care of the link(s) btw anyone besides me actually drill in to the data?

  34. Janet Alderton and the Friends won't pick on the federal government for dumping hundreds of pounds of herbicide on American Camp (half life - about 1000 years). But they will not hestitate to cold cut any poor resident for anything that does not fit their Agenda of bull.


  35. The sick thing is that we are forced to pay our taxes that enable randy and the county to abuse our rights. Fair play has been tossed out the window, the baby with the bath water.
    There is no one willing to just say no, or for that matter yes, in matters that affect "we the people".
    Russel Barsh, the head of kwiaht, catchy name huh. Is a fucking attorney ,sorry I know its not Friday.
    He was a attorney for The Samish Nation. He has already seized Indian Island in Eastsound, click here to donate, and is now going after Skull Island in Massacre Bay which is the northern end of West Sound. Both are owned by BLM, which I thought meant us.
    Seems like he is trying to control and get our money plus feds dough to keep us off and control, there's that word again, what we thought was ours to visit and make a landfall. Take a break, enjoy the remote beauty.
    But no, here comes a ranger, border patrol, friend or kwaiht volunteer asking what are you doing here!
    What kind of society pays for its own repression?
    I guess we will not be able to feel the pain of a child dying from a drone strike, until it happens to us, by our own hand.
    Our own people have become the enemy, that's you and me.
    This isn't about the friends csa, county, feds, state, randy. the list is getting endless, we , you me us, have been buried in the ?
    This used to be a paradise it has turned into a parking lot for individuals and groups seeking to get a money for whatever with total disregard for the people that have honored the reality of the seasons.
    This is not a 7/24/365 environment.
    The Lummis did not live here year around. The Hadia and First People knew they didn't want to spend the whole year on the isolated islands across waters of stormy sea, you gotta death wish?
    Garden, chickens, a cow, a shit load of fire wood.
    Got more to say, but the taters and onions are boiling over.

  36. Some crack head jacked the Victoria Clipper!!
    I don't know why that is so funny.
    No one got hurt and no property damage. Just funny the stuff that goes through people's minds.

  37. 6:01 I thought I was the only person offended by Russel Barsh appropriating Indian Island. First, who asked him? Second, why the heck is he taking young kids out there if it's such a delicate environment? "Indian Island Marine Habitat Observation Center" my rear end. He claims to have a "laboratory" on Lopez (not with any license) and claims to have these "observation Centers" on all the islands. But these are nothing but him and a volunteer showing up at low tide and "taking charge." I'm sure the foundations who give all think these are real operating places. What a racket. I for one would like to go out to Indian Island unmolested sometime.

  38. Anybody else getting really fed up with the "Park Service"?

    Such a delight. These folks just got another 800K to spiff up American and British Camps.

    Looking at the list of planned improvements shows a pretty shallow list for that kind of money, but gotta be more bucks from where those came from. (Overrun expense.)

    I think this sounds like a rag by a conservative wing-nut, but it ain't.

    Let's start a list:

    First this park management killed the rabbits, which killed the food supply for the eagle and fox populations.

    Then they got bent on some fantasia about a "historical grassland" and pulled out any native conifer that dared come to life.

    Interns, those looking for jobs, ranged out through the relatively small grass land of American Camp, (In Montana 10,000 acres is small) with clipboards in hand as they stared into the grass.

    Well, shit, there's stuff here that does not belong in a "historical grassland"!

    Get out the Herbicide!

    Here's how it works with our beloved park service:

    First, some fool comes up with a really stupid idea.

    Second, huge money is spend to justify action on the stupid idea.

    Third, the stupid idea is acted upon.

    Watmough Bay, American Camp...there is no difference only different idiots spending your money.

  39. So the TH has moved on, and that's good, but I'm not letting our wealthy Port off the hook for the DHS fiasco.

    There can be no excuse for the cash rich Port being unable to meet the needs of their long time tenant. YEARS went bye bye.

    It is much like Port Managements' lack of ability to focus on the big rather than the small in the insurance settlement for the burned down building owned by the Port.

    A complete dither about getting every insurance dime, rather than getting the mess cleaned up and marching forward with a new building. Seems like someone also thought buying insurance from the cheapest bidder had to be honored. Dumb.

    Regardless of tenant occupancy, this large delay in moving forward has cost the Port far more than any settlement value.

    Now these very same people are talking YEARS before they accomplish anything. This whole thing has really exposed the bad management of the entity that has to stand aside as the money pours down.

    Let us not take years to get rid of that management.

  40. Work for the government or a nonprofit tied in with the government equals control. Apparently anyone who knows how to "work" the system can manipulate it.
    Even a zero can go to a hero when we are not paying attention and create laws that force us to leave our homes and places we truly love and care about
    So, who is the "winner" in all this? The ones splitting fire wood, have garden -chickens or those that wish to create regulations and harvest their crop off our backs by going to meetings on the mainland.
    There job? Trying to decide if we should be allowed to exist here.

  41. The Port of Friday harbor will do nothing beyond paying themselves.
    Show me the money. Then they will form committees, do studies and hire consultants, and still do nothing for us.
    Easily distracted by "the carrot".
    The riff-raff can go away or starve. Well, until they need them again.


  42. The government of has nothing to do with us.
    They have moved on.
    To where?, one things for sure, we will be the last to find out.

  43. In today's Council

    Janet Alderton showed not once but twice! First to fuss about coal on the Columbia and how orcas visiting the mouth of the Columbia affects our local economy and so the SJC Council must do something now. She brought a handy visual aid to help Council to try and understand what the hell she was trying to say. And then she nattered on about the danger of property owners actually talking to people in favor of bulkheading when they actually should be receiving more information from who knows who about what that will mitigate that danger. I guess. Its really important to the food chain and so forth.

    Stephanie Buffer shows up with her first blush reactions on bulkheadish kind of stuff and apologized about her toxic computer breaking down and having to revert to stone age note-taking tools. She is concerned that the Council is loose and vague about what over water structures really mean. Really, what the hell does that mean?

    Sarin Kivisto rambled on about this and that and the sounds of freedom that jets make and corrected everybody to use the official name of the border patrol that she uses and other stuff about emergencies and that we now need some kind of a blinking lights emergency board so folks could wander up and stare at it during a disaster.

    Even more. Jamie Stephens came back from an Association of Counties conference with all kinds of exciting measures and metrics for us to better understand the state of our local economy. He went on to marvel that this kind of stuff never occurred to him before. He certainly looks forward to the opportunity to talk a lot about that kind of economical-ish stuff again real soon.

    And last but not least everyone is feeling pretty pumped about actually finding the names, phone numbers and addresses of the corporate officers of CenturyLink. Council has drafted a letter but weren't quite sure where to send it. Two Council members noted it took some time to track all that stuff down. Wasn't on speed-dial.

  44. 5:08 Correct!

    I wish I could enjoy it, however, I agree at this point "resistance is a duty."

    This is a thing us draftees know: Duty/Country. Those who sit idle and do nothing are, as stated many times here on the TH, most of the problem.

  45. Good report. Is there a good, secure, assisted living home anyone would like to recommend for Janet? (Hopefully, not in this State.)

  46. 49 years ago today:

    "There's a time when the operation of the machine becomes so odious, makes you so sick at heart, that you can't take part! You can't even passively take part! And you've got to put your bodies upon the gears and upon the wheels…upon the levers, upon all the apparatus, and you've got to make it stop! And you've got to indicate to the people who run it, to the people who own it, that unless you're free, the machine will be prevented from working at all!"

    Mario Savio
    "Bodies upon the gears"
    December 2 1964

  47. "I've been embedded in what I call the "Rural Resistance" for about 25 years".
    -Gordy Peterson (IG archive)

    "The division in our island society generally breaks down along the lines of authoritarianism versus libertarianism. "
    -Gordy Peterson (IG archive)

  48. Okay, but I’m not going to give it to you in baby steps. Big boy steps. This is what I am hearing. Life for the average American is going to change significantly, and not the change people expect. First, DHS is preparing to work with police departments and the TSA to respond to civil uprisings that will happen when there is a financial panic. And there will be one, maybe as early as this spring, when the dollar won’t get you a gumball. I’m not sure what the catalyst will be, but I’ve heard rumblings about a derivatives crisis as well as an oil embargo. I don’t know, that’s not my department. But something is going to happen to collapse the dollar, which has been in the works since the 1990′s. Now if it does not happen as soon as this, it’s because there are people, real patriots, who are working to prevent this, so it’s a fluid dynamic. But that doesn’t change the preparations.

    And the preparations are these: DHS is prepositioning assets in strategic areas near urban centers all across the country. Storage depots. Armories. And even detainment facilities, known as FEMA camps. FEMA does not even know that the facilities are earmarked for detainment by executive orders, at least not in the traditional sense they were intended. By the way, people drive by some of these armories everyday without even giving them a second look. Commercial and business real estate across the country are being bought up or leased for storage purposes. Very low profile.

    Anyway, I am hearing that the plan from on high is to let the chaos play out for a while, making ordinary citizens beg for troops to be deployed to restore order. but it’s all organized to make them appear as good guys. That’s when the real head knocking will take place. We’re talking travel restrictions, which should no be a problem because gas will be rationed or unavailable. The TSA will be in charge of travel, or at least be a big part of it. They will be commissioned, upgraded from their current status.

    They, I mean Jarrett and Obama as well as a few others in government, are working to create a perfect storm too. This is being timed to coincide with new gun laws.

  49. Man, I thought I was paranoid

  50. I'm with Gordy, thanks for the warning though,

  51. The FEMA camp conspiracy has been around longer than Oliver North and Iran/Contra. But anything is possible. We are now hearing reports of new equipment stationed at the Anacortes armory. This may be because the Canadians are massing at our borders. Or the Friends intend to protect eelgrass with sterner measures.

    The rural resistance betrayed. Sure a sovereign debt crisis is inevitable so in the meanwhile let Gordy take the money and run while he bloviates on government waste, fraud and abuse. Any real Republican around here ought to be appalled.

    The local Federalis need six times the space at a rather hefty increase in rates while we are being told no increase in staff or assets are coming? Not likely. And the top regional brass actually show up in force to tell the community they didn't have to tell the community beforehand? WTF?

    Remember, the simplest explanations generally turn out to be the correct ones.

  52. @12:51 C+ for effort. You however forgot to include the grey aliens, the Illuminati, the Rothschilds, the second shooter on the grassy knoll, chemtrails, and the orbital mind control satellites. FNORD.

  53. Actually one thing might happen.

    The Watmough Bay fiasco of government gone bonkers over an old rock slide, will be used as an example for the need to crack down on the rest of us.

  54. What was Janet's visual aid this time? Cookie sheets?

    No wonder she doesn't want homeowners talking to anyone about armoring--the Friends have been getting tons of cash for years to "advise" homeowners about the evil of armoring in anyway but their favorite contractor's plans.

  55. @ 8:26 PM

    Dial up the morning public access agenda item on the video.

    Janet seemed well prepared to present 27 8×10 color glossy pictures with circles and arrows and a paragraph on the back of each one explaining what each one was to be used as evidence against us.

    But she only had enough time to wave one around.

  56. Speaking of disconnects, I note two articles in the SJ Journal. One says the park service has scored $800,000 that will be used to spiff up American and English camps. The other notes that 1,100 island residents rely on the local food bank. Too much to ask, I guess, that some of the $800,000 be used to feed the local hungry. Just sayin.....

  57. For that kind of money, hire the local poor and give them some work. The hell with off island student interns. They'll just pocket the bucks take the money away and blow it on toga parties back at school.

    This way the money has a local multiplier effect, local businesses get business and locals don't starve.

    Can Ron Zee grasp this concept?

  58. Sorry but we can't have any poor or middle class person's living on OUR Islands. All of you have to go. You may come over and take care of our yards and clean our homes, but you need to go home at the end of each day, you are not welcome. FOSJ, etal.

  59. Pictometry. Whatever happened with that? Did they do the flight? Is the county using it? Can we access it? As I recall we paid for it, even after Randy's
    Just a endless series of "crises" that never get resolved or responded to.
    " A crisis after a certain period of time, just becomes the way things are". And that's how the county deals with us. This to will blow by, that is how we have done it for awhile, and it works.
    They truly don't care.

  60. Oh yah they flew, pictometry that is, but you gotta love their thinking. They won't share it with us, so we don't spy on each other. Only county employees are authorized to spy on us. That is unless you can pay for it. So understand. The citizen "as usual" is somewhat like the traveler being asked to walk through the chamber that produces a naked image to the security agent, but to protect your privacy you won't be shown what the county employees are authorized to review.
    Is this way sick and backwards, or what? I'm starting to think we have traded places with the old communist
    Russia, is it just me?

  61. Who is in charge here anyway Rick?,Bob?,? The county government? Or us citizens? Grow some

  62. This is why general public distaste to and distrust of a permanent Department of Homeland Security presence on Spring Street is so strong and so wide-spread and is not going to simmer down any time soon. The Pictometry issue is also going to come back, it's simmering as well. For similar reasons. We do need to move Jamie off the position of Chair, that will help, not by much, but it will help. Hey Rick: Honeymoon is over. You're up.

    Somehow all these issues -- along with the real issues underlying the renewed broadband debate -- are going to ignite this winter with the Shoreline Master Program update as the catalyst. It's all gonna hit the fan with the public at some point doing a collective "WTF??!!" A fine kickoff to election season.

    Don't you just love the islands in late January when cabin fever really kicks in, and the rabble rise up to storm the gates with their torches and pitchforks? This is where the Trojan Heron will have its opportunity to do its finest work.

  63. Well I dunno, this kind of "storm the Bastille" thinking sometimes leads to guillotines. But anyway ...

    Speaking of disconnects, how is that the Good Mayor of Friday Harbor can come out publicly opposing a Subway franchise because it sends the wrong message about our rural character but utters not a peep when the Federal government takes over the commercial downtown core?

    Maybe in some ways that is the current reflection of our rural character and if it is shame on the Town of Friday Harbor.

    Come on Carrie: Tell us what you knew and when you knew it. Did this altogether come to you as a surprise or did someone get to you before and warn you to keep your mouth shut?

  64. "when the Federal government takes over the commercial downtown core"

    Does this mean I need to apply to HUD or FDA or some such agency to view a movie at the Palace Theatre?

  65. Hey I hate Homeland Security as much as anyone, well maybe about as much as the EPA and the FDA/
    at some level they need to exist/ just not to the point we lost "everything" or ancestors fought for. However if they must exist I want them Transparent front and center not in the back woods. I’m glad they are moving downtown where they can keep out of trouble.

  66. @ 12:12 PM

    As long as your sustainability papers all seem resilient there should be no need for precautions.

    @ 6:11 PM

    Great, let's put the Friends, Land Bank, Madrona Institute and National Monument community-based management offices down there too so we can keep an eye on all of them. Throw out all the commercial businesses. They don't reflect our rural character anymore.

  67. @7:16pm Well, looking at the absence of thriving commercial businesses in FH the past few years, the vacancy rate for commercial space, the dusty empty storefronts, I'd say our rural character no longer includes a bustling seaside village.

    We'd have tumbleweeds in the streets by now, except for the heroic efforts of the Weed Control Board to keep that particular invasive species at bay.

  68. Thank you 7:34. Pardon me 6:11 but you are in a pollyanna dream world.

    We all got, or most of us, our assessment evaluations. As usual, because we try to improve our land, we got an increased assessment. I don't like it but I know property improvements are carte blanche for the Assessor.

    However, the matter of this post is that mine and many of you got your land measured by some f'ing aerial measurement system. Maybe you lost 400 sq feet or half an acre, maybe you gained.

    "Oh", she said, "it does not mean anything. If we get better technology it could change again."

    If we object, it was suggested we hire a surveyor. Since our land has been surveyed twice for permits this idea was not appealing. (One stamped copy supplied to the assessors office.)

    To me the real question is: What is the purpose of all this money spent on getting the latest DATA on land in SJC?

    Is there any real reason we need to do this?

    Or is this the continuing horse shit, that because we can do it we must.

  69. Hey, BOB, instead of laying awake worrying about oil spills, do you think you could possibly make a motion on a local action of concern here in your dear island nation?

    Make a motion, BOB, any motion!

  70. Has anyone considered trying to recruit Toronto Mayor Rob Ford to run this council?

    It could work.

  71. It has to be close to making nominations for the end of the year TH awards.
    We need to nominate then vote for the following.
    1) Dorf of the year
    2) most idiotic public posting/letter
    3) general village idiot
    4) hypocrite of the year
    5) the "are you kidding me" award
    6) lie of the year

  72. Isn't next year an election year for the Lopez seat?

    So who will be running? It's not too early to start the discussion.

    No offense, but I'm not sure running Brian again will do it.
    A.) I don't know that he can win.
    B.) Whoever it is, needs to be able to spur the current council to do something. Not sure that Brian has the political balls to make things happen. We need someone who's not afraid to speak out against popular thought and hang their ass on the line. Then fight when as the shit is blowing through the fan. Seems like there's not much of that in this county.

    Despite our reorganization happening in the planning department, it still takes 8 weeks to get a simple permit, and after 12 years the CAO is still nothing more than a pipe dream (or nightmare). From the council----- only crickets. Good to know though that Rick got his Christmas light up at the pharmacy and Bob still has a pulse.

    Our current council was supposed to result in a leaner more efficient operation. Instead we have two Used Car Salesmen and a Mute representing us. I'm starting to think that Rob Ford comment might not be a bad idea! At least he knows how the drug market works. He would be a HUGE asset in working in the new pot initiative!

  73. @11:14

    This is a good observation. Lopez's political leanings confuses me to no end. My perceptions are influenced to some extent by what I read in (used to be There is a very left leaning thread of comments, as well as a few strong anti-technology, anti-capitlism, pro-environment, and so on. I would expect the next candidate to be pro-FOSJ, pro-CAO, pro-SMP, pro land use regulation, etc. I'm confused by the fact that there were NO applications for weed production, processing, or retail. What gives?

  74. Why buy, when you're already growing your own?

    We would be lucky to get a candidate as good as Brian.

  75. No dig on Brian intended, but I don't think he has the strength to deal with the brick wall that is Bob and Rick. At this point it just doesn't seem like we can get a pulse out of the two stooges, which means the remaining live pulse in the room has to seriously raise blood pressure to get anything done.

    After last election, where we couldn't even get anyone to run and create a contest, I'm just hoping we can get someone to run who doesn't mind speaking up, even if it makes them unpopular!

  76. @7:35

    Are you going to run? Seems like you got a pulse...get in there!

  77. What are the odds that no one runs? Seems like the lockstep voters on Lopez like Jamie.
    It's going to take someone who is willing to be mildly to moderately shunned for going against the village mentality.
    Hopefully there is someone who will.
    No one ran against the FH mayor. Just afraid that might happen again.
    Is anyone going to run against the judges here? Have you witnessed any of the antics of one of these judges?
    Let's just say, based on the sentences they give out for serious felonies, if I was Colton Harris Moore's attorney, I would have done every thing I could to have the case tried here.

  78. And this in the San Juan Islander...

    "The Department of Agriculture and Department of the Interior have announced that Kwiáht is one of 91 organizations nationwide approved so far to help implement the Obama Administration’s 21st Century Conservation Service Corps (21CSC), a national collaborative effort to put America’s youth and veterans to work protecting, restoring, and enhancing our country’s natural and cultural resources.

    Kwiáht director Russel Barsh welcomed the announcement as “a breakthrough in our efforts to bring island youth and Tribal youth together to protect and enhance the new National Monument and other federal lands, shorelines, and small islands in the San Juan archipelago.” Barsh says that the first steps will include identifying priority actions with federal agencies, and devising recruiting strategies with high schools and colleges serving the islands and Tribes with historical ties to the islands."

    Hmmm...more grant money to "protect the National Monument and shorelines". Could such protection require some new "regulations"?
    Just sayin' ...

  79. @5:11

    More Federal muck to be involved in. Make up you mind don't want DHS here, but hey let's cozy up with another Fed agency. After's about helping the kids. Get into their minds early, yeah that's how you do it.

  80. "Constitution Free Zones" or CFZ
    You say that you’ve never heard of the CFZ? Well, you’re not alone. Much of the American population hasn’t either. That’s another aspect of this edict, which should give us both pause and suspicion about the actions of the federal government. The measures that define the CFZ were enacted by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) during the height of last decade’s terrorism scare. It was upheld by the congress, executive branch, and never challenged directly by the Supreme Court. Essentially, the CFZ defines a 100 mile strip of land, which runs along the interior borders of American territory. Within this zone, federal agents can conduct extra-Constitutional operations including, but not limited to, illegal search and seizure, detainment without charge or legal representation, and general dehumanization tactics to solicit private information.

    Yeah, sure, it's just a wee itty bitty customs office. Sure player, sure.

    All ya'll big Obummer supporters really still stand behind your man?
    We are screwed. Bigtime. The frog is being boiled and basically the reaction has been that the water feels nice and warm. Hell, in this case, we the frog have asked the government "hey, this feels good, can you turn the temperature up just a bit", to which they wickedly smiled and said "yes".

    I trust in Jesus and pray for all of my fellow islanders and countrymen that they may find the peace of the Lord in their hearts, for we face a dark enemy that will bring nightmarish tyranny very very soon.

  81. Is it true DHS cars must be secured in heavy wire cages in Gordy's building's underground garage?

    If so, one might wonder who is going to attack them? Who are they so afraid of? Seems extremely unlikely a terrorist would directly attack of bunch of armed DHS agents in a burg like Friday Harbor. (It could ruin the whole day for the nice coffee shop, upstairs.)

  82. @11:32
    Secured vehicle lockup is just SOP for Federal LE vehicles. Lots of expensive equipment and weapons.
    Don't worry, it's just a customs office.
    ROB FORD for Council!!

  83. Guess I'm not up on NetFlix; who the F is "Rob Ford."

    Mr. Ford, I do hope you run, along with many others.

    Everyone got the return envelope stuffed for FOSJ?

    (Note: the FOSJ office staff got tired of all the hate mail, so they went with the expense of listing your name on the mailing in an effort to shut you nasty people up.)

    A hand written note fits nicely in their return envelope. (These fools missed an ID on the return envelope.) You must put a stamp on the envelope, but you can express yourself as you like.

    Perhaps you might do this on a Friday.

  84. Barsh says that the first steps will include identifying priority actions with federal agencies, and devising recruiting strategies "

    I love the fact that these people can't generate a real action verb if their lives depended on it.

  85. Does this mean Barsh will be seizing more of our little islands for his own use, and keeping the rest of us off them, unless we drink his Kool-Aid?

  86. @7:00 Rob Ford is the mayor of Toronto. Based on recent situations that came to light, namely smoking crack, drunk driving, and comments during an interview that left everyone speechless, he will likely be looking for a new job.

  87. Wowser! The Planning Commission, (see Island Guardian), has been doing some thinking.

    And, guess what, they suggest some rational changes to the Shoreline development standards.

    READ IT. It actually seems to be a step toward letting homeowners and architects do reasonable construction on the shoreline. I believe most people with the huge capital cost of the lot want nothing more than to do a good job and do something they like.

    Unlike the FOSJ regulation sledgehammer, we maybe now can draw people into a cooperative discussion on siting and height. (Buildings have been driven up because of the existing rules.)

    Keep em coming PC, and thank you!
    (Gotta love the suggested change to the patio nonsense.)


  88. In less than a decade the customs and border protection agency has become the largest federal law enforcement agency in the nation. San Diego Union Tribune 12-8-13.

  89. Speaking of federal law enforcement agencies, landlords, be careful who you lease to:

    "Agents damaged buildings they rented for their operations, tearing out walls and rewiring electricity — then stuck landlords with the repair bills. A property owner in Portland said agents removed a parking lot spotlight, damaging her new $30,000 roof and causing leaks, before they shut down the operation and disappeared without a way for her to contact them."

  90. The "No DHS in FH" Alliance claim that Councilman Rick may be on their side:

    "Rick Hughes, councilman for Orcas, suggested citizens write letters to him and include signatures regarding their feelings about the Department of Homeland Security re-location to corner of 1st & Spring St. He's especially willing to back citizens up regarding the lack of due diligence and public process that the DHS, GSA (General Securities Administration) & CBP demonstrated during the re-location decisions. If you can't make it this Tuesday, have no fear, the county council meets every Tuesday. We'll just keep showing up!"

  91. Sounds like Rick is now an expert in government contract execution.

    Great that our local county council member is going to expend his time diving into the fun and simple world of government contracting. I'm sure with his VAST knowledge of the topic, he should easily be able to change the approach of the federal government.

    Seriously Rick, stick to what you know. Roller Skating and ESPN! If something was done illegally, hand it off to Randy, otherwise, stay the Fuc* out of it!

  92. Isn't the new location in the Town of Friday Harbor, and under the Town's jurisdiction, not the County's?

    Didn't the Town's government already issue an opinion on the matter?

  93. And in other news, see the IG, FOSJ got more money to pay their cronies to do bullshit studies and funnel money towards judicial activism.
    Nothing new. Speaking of bullshit, I wonder how Ed Hale is doing these days? He is in charge of what again? Oh yeah, utilities manager. Sounds like a serious job.


  94. @ 10:41
    "hand it off to Randy"
    Surely you jest.

  95. @ 10:41 AM

    F*@#! off ...

    If Hughes wants to make an issue of this, so be it. Frankly we'd be better off if the Council were more engaged with Federal activities around here.

    Even more "coordinated." The County should learn how to invoke the 10th Amendment and start coordinating with proposed Federal incursions.

    Someone tell Rick about the coordination process.

  96. @10:41

    I agree, he should be engaged in tracking Federal activities, but to be bitching about an entirely legitimate lease agreement in well beyond his scope. If Rick wants to create a better system of communication with the Feds, or create regulations that restrict their location then do that, but don't run around glad handing the huddled masses simply because it seems politically prudent. Rick knows it as well as I do, if DHS wanted to rent an office next to Rays Pharmacy, he'd have done it in a heartbeat, and wouldn't have asked for your, mine or Santa Claus' opinion. It's business people.

    This is a matter of a commercial lease that fully complies with the regulations in Friday Harbor. Rick has NO business interfering with legitimate commerce and especially claiming violations on the part of the GSA. Where was Rick while they were soliciting bids, which by the way, they did. Too late Rick, Gordy wins, accept it and move on.

  97. Rick also knows that the County has precious little authority within the bounds of the incorporated Town of Friday Harbor (Incorporated, and independent since 2/10/1909).

    Or he should.

  98. @5:55. I did read it, the short version anyway, written by a confused by Colin Maycock.

    I encourage others here to focus on the work of the Planning Commission in regard to the SMP and spend less time on the entirely dead issue of who Gordy will sleep with if given enough cash.

  99. @ 8:46 PM

    OK, let's ponder who Colin would sleep with if given enough cash. I bet a Federal grant or lease would work just as well for him too. Imagine a business cutting a secret deal with the Feds. What could possibly go wrong?

    Which reminds me very little of a famous conversation Winston Churchill was said to have had:

    Churchill: "Madam, would you sleep with me for five million pounds?"
    Socialite: "My goodness, Mr. Churchill... Well, I suppose... we would have to discuss terms, of course... "
    Churchill: "Would you sleep with me for five pounds?"
    Socialite: "Mr. Churchill, what kind of woman do you think I am?!"
    Churchill: "Madam, we've already established that. Now we are haggling about the price”

  100. We just cross-referenced Gordy with Churchill.

    Yep, it just hit 32 in Hell.

  101. @ 5:02. Perhaps. It could be said that "One should know. That, the county has precious little authority, within the bounds of the county."
    As an aside. I welcome the opportunity to work on my punctuation, as related to my right of free speech, albeit, in a written form.
    Please feel free to correct? my punctuation and such. Because it does, I think, have an effect on the drift of the thought sent out.
    Pause, think. Question, think. Stop , think.

  102. Meanwhile,
    while you were ranting on the local anonymous blog the FOSJ raked in bundles of cash, your cash to be exact, and yet not a soul show up to public access time to demand the council stop the madness..."actively manage" looks more like "passively accepting" to me.

  103. Churchill, no, seemed more like cross referenced with Colin. Separated at birth?

    Yes, meanwhile FOSJ, Kwiath and Madrona Institute collectively just raked in how much? Can you imagine strategic coordination?

    And what's this buggaboo about active management? Active management of what? Oh I get it. You just want to discourage everyone and convince them that Resistance is Futile. Given the recent betrayal of the Rural Resistance you are probably right.

    We are the EcoBorg. You will be assimilated.

  104. Watching the Clowncil session, as Lord Senator Rannker talks quite a lot about the fact that 1) he was aware that DHS was negotiating the deal months before it became public 2) Wondered aloud if it will become possible for the National Monument offices to share space with DHS right there on Spring St.

    And there you have it boys and girls. The Friday Harbor Federal Building. National Monument and DHS cheek by jowl.

    Does. Anyone. Have. To. Spell. This. Out. For. You?

  105. @9:42
    Yes, please spell it out for me. Forgive me, I have a degree in Individual Studies and have a difficult time grasping things such as logic and common sense.
    You don't have to dumb it down too far, I'm not like edhale stupid.

  106. Remember, the next step in the process is to elevate the National Monument to "World Heritage Site". Then, we can apply to the United Nations for grants!

  107. @ 10:32 AM

    Department of Monument Security

    Monument Border Patrol

    Department of Homeland Monuments

    Yep, ya know after awhile it starts to look like the same over-reaching Federal government doesn't it?

    Sorry to hear about your academic achievements, hope those student loans got paid off.

  108. Any chance we can rope this in people?

    I'm with you all. I do believe war makes war. Build a large "security" entourage, attract attention, become known as a target of opportunity.

    It all feeds the flack vested fear of an unreal reality. Yeah, gotta cage the cars.

    Continuing with this builds more net thread and nasty reading interest we might need to really worry about.

    It is done. The SMP is not.

  109. The Council along with the oratorical Senator Ranker spent better part of an hour yesterday raking the coals over this issue. Worth taking a look at. Done? Who knows. Jarman raises some excellent points.

    The SMP is going through the same propaganda maneuvers to manufacture consent as the CAO did. Plenty of interest out there to assure us that it too, is "done."

    Would anyone with some insight into this give the rest of us a real simple primer into the current status of the SMP update, what the problems are and why bother?

  110. @7:42am

    That is an excellent idea. I've tried to follow the whole CAO, SMP exercise, but feel like I've lost perspective. It feels like we've gotten to a point where we are saying "they (DOE, EPA, FOSJ, GMHB, etc) are making us do this, and we don't have any choice". For example, apparently we will use the DOE buffer definition. What does that mean? Is it the 800 feet FOSJ wants? Bigger, smaller, what? I don't see much quality reporting in the local media about details.

  111. Maybe if we all agree to shift topic the Guardian will agree to start posting the Trojan Heron again. Let's stop bullying the property collectivists. Truce, OK? It's important to unpack this SMP puzzle box right away.

  112. It appears the Island Guardian is experimenting with voice writing. (The report on the State utilities meeting...even the big KR showed up. He has gotten a lot bigger as most lunch politicians do. But are those shoulder pads?)

    Message to Island Guardian:

    I did not count the misspellings, the confused syntax, the general poor quality of your report, but I'd strongly recommend you drop this tech for at least a year. Perhaps by then you can get one that works.

  113. 8:11 You don't see much responsible reporting on the SMP, because there ain't any.

    A major problem we all must face is San Juan County takes no interest in truly informing land owners how they intend to screw them, from in front or from behind.

    Their constant net postings are a puny effort to obscure any real effort to tell anyone what the hell is planned to degrade their life's worth of net worth.

    As any real estate person will tell you, this place balances on the good will of outside the County land owners. (a lot of them don't even live in the State of Washington)

    There is a large number of people here that seem to think we should screw these people (see above) oh I forgot sideways, and this is, in my view a large mistake, why, because they mostly are planning to come here. (Take their money and trash their dreams, you say, sorry, I can't go along with it.)

  114. Often when the TH is on a roll of 100+ posts I go back and read a bunch of them. Ever time when I do this, there are thoughts and serious comments I wish would not get lost.

    But they do. They pass to never, never land, and we all get no lasting benefit from these bits of sometime middle of the night thoughts.

    The minute someone would cull them for a library, the person doing the culling would have a bad day every day. (Myself, I like the humorous ones, the best.)

    What should we do?

  115. @7:40 It would be interesting to have a running surveys on all things. Any comment person could throw out an issue with a specific question. Give it a number or a heading.

    Certainly the TH would get even more politician readers.

    A sample: Is Bob Jarman doing what you expected when you voted for him?

    YES= X

    NO= XX

  116. Did you see Lovell's great idea?

    Instead of DHS in the sacred core, she's asking our government to establish " a coordinated public lands information and interpretive center in Friday Harbor.

    This facility could showcase the San Juan Island National Historical Park, the San Juan Islands National Monument, US Fish and Wildlife Wilderness islands, and perhaps more of the state and county public lands that are located in the San Juan Islands."

    You can't make this stuff up.

  117. Is there ANYONE more disconnected from reality than Lovel? Seriously.

  118. Let's see here.

    The alliance wants no DHS (their aversion to big government)but it is fine to have other types of big government in their sacred core? Remember folks, the NPS rangers do pack heat. That must be acceptable to you then?

    Are they helping Gordy with the mortgage payments that he pays for THEIR sacred core?

    Another WTF!

  119. Holy Mother of God, I agree with Waldron!

    More than Drone surveillance by private outfits and the ubiquitous "non profits" like FOSJ, I fear our own blessed San Juan County Government.

    When will our employees stop spying on us?

    (Think they're not doing it...dream on baby.)

  120. @7:56 It all comes down to putting money in County paychecks. Bust em, means fines, more money in the County bank account, more money for me.

    This place has a horrendous budget in excess of 50 MILLION per YEAR, and our trio of the lost on the County Council found a little extra money and instantly spent it.

    Horrors, to my knowledge, there was no consideration of red lining the countless totally useless pursuits going on in County Government. If even a Council member had had a few reservations about some of this spending it might have been refreshing. No! None of them seemed concerned in pissing away these profligate funds. Earned money confiscated from the people who elected them trusting in their professed need to care for us.

    Didn't happen, did it.

  121. Wonderful. The prospect of Gordy's Gulag now exhumes Lovel the Hutt from her political grave. This entire protection racket has only one thing in common: They all complain about Federal government over reach until the money bags thump on the table. However you look at it it amounts to much the same thing: a Federal building in the downtown core.

    But of course, what does this all have to do with the SMP? More than you might imagine.

  122. Speaking about the downtown core, drove thru it last night, wonderful lights, beautiful decorations. Made me smile.
    Hopefuly the true meaning of Christmas is not lost.
    Celebration of the birth of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.
    May you find the peace of Christ in your hearts. I pray for all of us, even those who are non believers.

  123. Nice to have someone praying for me, not that I am special, but given the latest real estate report by the ever excellent Mary Ann Simonson,(I apologize for what I'm sure is a misspelling) we all need all the prayer we can get.

    TWO YEARS+ to sell anything over One Mil. OUCH!

  124. @ 3:13 pm I can only imagine what corner of the island the crazies will be sending the sheriffs' office to, once they relocate the customs guys. They also carry WEAPONS. PUBLICLY. IN THE SACRED DOWNTOWN CORE. I say send them all those monster enforcers to Waldron. Where the tourists won't see them and the children will be safe.


    Lovel's genius suggestion has received a bunch of excited "spontaneous" comments over at the Journal.

    "Cloud" says:
    Wonderful idea. I support the GSA here, but let us find a better suited site for their new space and use our downtown core to promote happy traveling to our islands!"

    "Juniper" says "I love it! Wow, and just think, they could have the coolest gift shop around with really nice quality souvenirs, maps, water bottles, hats, etc.! Win Win for sure! Customs should renegotiate with the Port for a forever home! A beautifully curated gift shop in a portion of the space to bring in additional revenue!(Maybe some of those Puget Sound Partnership vests and lip glosses?)

    And best of all, "Mr. Schulz" thanks Lovel for intervening on his behalf with CDPD (don't we wish we all had such influence with the permit process?) and then exclaims:

    I long to see you restored to local government. I will become a donor to any endeavor you may take on in the future. Please, keep up your efforts on behalf of our community. We need you."

  126. Am I mistaken? There appear to be readers of the TH who think the people of Waldron should succumb to machines looking at them as they sit in their many outhouses.

    You feel there is a need for this? I don't.

    The latest real estate numbers for this County are less than impressive to put it mildly. At least part of this is vested in the CAO debacle, but also in the disappearing basic attraction of these islands. PRIVACY!

    As the three unthinking well fed slobs on the County Council fiddle, well guess what, this place departs from why you came here. You want that?

    As much as I would never live on Waldron, I applaud the effort of those who do.

    AND, I suggest we have a County wide referendum to eliminate all the surveillance we can.

  127. The Waldron petition, while well meaning, is useless. As has been demonstrated in countless court cases, local government entities have NO authority over airspace. ONLY the FAA can regulate what and where anything can fly. And right now, the FAA is well into the process of setting rules for drone flights almost anywhere manned aircraft can fly. They are establishing flight rules and wrestling with the problem of VFR flight.
    The Waldron petition is another example of an emerging lust for "direct democracy", where "the people" get to "participate" in vote on everything, conveniently forgetting that we're set up as a representative republic, like it or not.

  128. Pratt will now clutch to this phony issue like a drowning witch to a life preserver. Jeff Morris is leaving his long uncontested seat in the district. She is well positioned, coming as she does from an east coast patrician political family married into old Hawaiian plantation money who bought up much of San Juan a hundred years go.

    Yes, a political position is part of the lifestyle of which she has grown accustomed. A National Monument knick-knack shop on Spring Street is a monumental vision that will rally the Brickworks Brigade in an election year and their counterparts on the mainland. The Madrona Institute will be awarded the concession so they might become financially sustainable. They will create tourism related jobs, Remember, this is economic development.

    Anyone who didn't see this coming should have their head examined.


  129. How about Pratt for President? Anyone? ;-) By the way, here's something for our compensation committee to consider: Paying politicians too much harms their work ethic, study claims.

  130. How about Lovel Pratt: National Monument Manager.

    A government job with health insurance.

  131. You can talk about Pratt taking Larsens position all day long, but she's not the one you should be looking at.

    Here's how it plays out:

    Ranker runs for Larsons seat. Likely wins
    Byers runs for Rankers seat. Likely wins wins.

    NW Washington gets a little more liberal.

    Oh yeah. The CAO is remains f'd up.

  132. Why would Larsen resign?

    Ranker is stuck. In so many ways.

    The Morris seat may be up for grabs if rumors hold that he is not running again.

    If there are any rumors that Larsen is not running for Congress again, let's hear them.

    But anyway, why should even the most knee jerk of 40th Progressive Dem koolaid guzzlers want to keep voting for howling lunatics otherwise safely locked up in the attic out here when there are plenty already in Bellingham choose from ?


  133. Mr. Rollins, re: your post on the Island guardian; well not quite, sir.

    While much of your stuff was thoughtful the "put their lives on the line every day" was complete fiction.

    Any veteran, would tell you the chance any of these people having their "lives on the line" is virtually zero.

    Only the cash rich Port of Friday Harbor has any responsibility in this matter. Anyone with feet on the ground knows they blew it.

    I am one of those who had complete respect for the Port. No longer. After the left burn down and this complete lack of good management, I will not vote for any of them, and I intend to remind people of this incompetence, if any of them run again.

  134. I think this is just a ploy to add $ to the conservation district. How clever of Lovel to turn a local concern into a...potential career for herself!! The "win win" is her own!

    Oh PLEASE Lovel! GO AWAY!!!

  135. Maybe I missed something. The County Council without much talk rubber stamped a budget IN EXCESS of ONE MILLION $,$$$,$$$ PER WEEK!

    I have to work twenty years to pay one week of this County Government?

    No thanks, I'm outta here, with the wife and the kids and all the volunteer stuff we do for the school and you fat cats can go F yourselves.

  136. The Department of Homeland Security, the agency over the Border Patrol and CBP, didn't immediately respond to a request Sunday afternoon from The Associated Press for comment .............Acting Deputy CBP Commissioner Kevin McAleenan said CBP doesn't control the release of information or pace of investigations, pointing to the FBI and Homeland Security.

    The Republic found the vast majority of Border Patrol agents and Customs and Border Protection officers respond to conflict with restraint. Even when facing potentially deadly force, most agents and officers don't turn to their firearms. But agents who killed mostly did so under circumstances virtually identical to hundreds of encounters that other agents resolved without lethal force and without serious injuries to either side.

    In the last four years, rock-throwing incidents at the border accounted for eight of the 24 instances in which agents killed people. The Border Patrol considers rocks deadly weapons that justify lethal force, even though it is rare for agents to be injured in such incidents, The Republic found.

    The vast majority of rock-throwing incidents occur in a few, well-known, mostly urban spots along the border. But the Border Patrol doesn't require agents working in those areas to carry or use less-lethal alternatives.

  137. @ 10:13 pm
    Interesting information about border patrol and rock throwing. One has to wonder, why is there rock throwing in the first place? And will we be seeing more of it?

  138. RE: the pile of burnt down trash on Port property.

    Is there any reason the businesses, especially those across the street, in Friday harbor should not bring suit against Friday Harbor Port Directors: Mike Ahrenius, Greg Hertel, and Barbara Marrett?

    Sue em! Have them served in the middle of the night!

  139. As one of the Port neighbors, it is a good thing there is no ready supply of rocks around.

  140. "Interesting information about border patrol and rock throwing. One has to wonder, why is there rock throwing in the first place? And will we be seeing more of it?"

    December 16, 2013 at 6:55 AM

    The rock throwing in question was a bunch of Mexicans at the border. How exactly does that relate to Friday Harbor and ferry passengers and visiting boaters?

  141. @2:18am

    The progressive thinking goes like this. If the rocks were thrown from the south to the north, it is ok. That is just a protest against an unjust, immigrant phobic, oppressive Government agency. If north to south, that is not ok, because that is unjust, immigrant phobic, and oppressive. The same U-IP- O agency is setting up shop to throw rocks at ferry passengers, boaters, and residents.

  142. Well I think that rock throwing by miscreants thousands of miles away from here is locally relevant for about the same reason that non-peer reviewed studies of mud in Mozambique becomes somehow locally relevant to the sizing of buffers. Which allows our local Progressive EcoDem Monumentalists to feel just fine about throwing rocks at all of us. Not that any of this makes sense. It's just that you must realize that in the Gaia of our Minds, everything is connected just exactly the way I say it is. Right?

  143. Nothing worse than stale Heron for the holidays.

  144. And still we have those, mostly the very rich, who do things that make FOSJ look like a necessity.

    The clear cutting on, I believe, Mud Bay on the SW of SJI. Really is a bit beyond what anyone here in residence would even dream of doing.

    And, of course, aerial photos and other surveillance will now be reinforced and used to justify this spying on all the rest of us.

    Gun Boats! Shit yes, we gotta have those.

    Stephanie is surely getting her rocks off in celebration of this newest fund raising photo op.

  145. In the latest butter your toast in the Journal, Port "Director" Marilyn O'Connor skidded by an effort by Port Commission president Greg Hertel to get the clean up done on the burned out building decorating Friday Harbor.

    Ms. O'Connor said the insurance company needed "a few more days" to " finish their work."

    Really, Marilyn? And what the F did you do over these many, many months to get it done. Seems you don't the skill or guts to walk down there with the insurance people and lay it on the line.

    Good bye, good luck, there is a free ferry waiting for you.

  146. Here is a nice juxtaposition to the way our co-opted county seems to have been operating in recent years: We Cannot Predict the Many Ways Freedom Will Improve Our Lives.

  147. Excellent letter in the IG written by Royce Meyerott.

    Meyerott clearly outlines the poor economic situation, long time bad management has placed us in.

    Currently, we have the "funnel" approach to "fixing" our CAO debacle to the satisfaction of the Growth Management Board. Most would prefer calling it the "Bandaid Approach."

    Continuing such bad management only sinks us closer and closer to the bottom. And yes there is a bottom. And when we get there you're not going to like it.

    Read Mr. Meyerott carefully; he is telling the unvarnished truth.

  148. Here is a commentary I hope will be of interest to TJ readers, speaking about inflation (which is certainly experienced here).
    Keeping It Real.

  149. Let's move on to something else.

    We need some fresh meat. Let's visit the Mar Vista developing saga?

    Gordy, take a rest. Next up!!

    Let the hate begin!

  150. 7:18. Sorry, don't agree. Obviously there are many bright people on this site and surely you are one of them.

    Attack the declining economic situation and population dynamic we face with your good ideas. (Got none, please be quiet.) Here's a few:

    The Chamber of Commerce could easily make this the most Family Friendly place in seven Western States.

    1) Children 12 and under accompanied with two paying adults eat free, including a beverage.

    2) The Chamber demands WSF to allow children 12 and under to ride free.

    3) Real estate offices pump up their efforts to profile San Juan County as THE place to raise children. (This would really be easy, because it's a fact.)

    4) Here's an unsubstantiated factoid that is my personal favorite. Women wanting to get pregnant, get pregnant here. Maybe it is the relaxed atmosphere, maybe just the clean air, maybe the boredom, maybe wine with dinner, maybe, maybe; but just tell that base of thousands of women who want to get knocked and, well, this is the place to give it a try.

  151. @8:02
    Sorry you had me going until #4. You lost me with your caveman analysis and the "knocked" comment. Are we 15 years old?

    Face it there is no leadership here. The only ones leading are the alphabet soup committees or what have you,i.e follow the money. Most people are sleepwalking and not paying attention. Why should they care? Ignorance is bliss.

    And so it goes...

  152. @ 7:18
    What do you propose the parents do to earn a living?
    All the jewelry making poetry writing life coach positions have been taken.

  153. There are very rare instances where a federal agency is NOT required to obtain permits for construction. For the rare instances where a federal agency is NOT required to obtain a permit, it's even rarer that the proponent of the permit at a minimum does not fulfill all of the local requirements in good faith prior to commencing construction activities. In this instance, the federal agency views the locals on the islands as a bunch of backwater hicks that are not recognized with any more respect than the fish eggs they may have crushed when using heaving equipment on the beach. The irony is that the Tribes were fully aware of the beach activities but with a County willing to work the other way (Tribes, Ecology and Federal Agencies are the puppeteers and the County is the puppet)when they are completely briefed about the project (after all, a FOSJ employee was working on the project and FOSJ IS the County), it's another case of nothing less than disheartening dishonesty on the part of the County, the Tribes, the Feds, and the companies that undertook the work. Shame on them all for disrespecting the folks that endeavor to protect the environment and sensitive areas (uh, there's spirits on the beach and bones in the burial site - all the more reason to inform the public about the necessity of the project - not to mention the fact that the burial sites were not protected by the customary orange fencing during log chaining). Did anyone stop to think that the bones remains found belonged to the Pioneers that occupied this area for many years and the bones may not be Tribal remains at all?).

  154. 7:26, As I understand, here in the State of Washington it matters little if the bones on a site are Asian, African American, or even Russian or European, only our blessed "tribes" rate the $150 per hour archaeologist watch when you dig more than six inches deep.

    Be advised, your bones will never get the attention their bones do.

    Every septic installer knows on the one hand there are old systems that need work, and on the other hand the County will make it as expensive as possible over this constant worry about "sacred sites."

    And then you have the government hegemony paying little attention to these matters. Maybe that should be the way it is. I know my bones are not important and never should be.

  155. Always wondered why we separate religion and government in most ways but one: tiptoeing around the edges of Indian mythology. We have to respect their tribal burial grounds and their creation stories and all that, with a straight face. Why is that? And we have to pretend that they have "traditional" knowledge that is superior to science. I guess that includes overfishing the rivers that are home to the very fish they claim to want more of.

  156. I wish the British would give back what they took from my Irish ancestors.

  157. Anyone see the council agenda posted on the IG?
    I think it's open season on "So the County Council walks in to a bar....." Jokes.

  158. So Jamie, Rick and Bob walk in to a bar....
    Wait, who are we kidding? Rick was already there.

  159. Honestly, as disappointed as I am in Rick's actions on many matters, I see no point in the cheap shots about drinking. One person keeps saying that over and over. why?

  160. Rick is not buying rounds for the house?

    Agreed, because it is my guess, Rick, despite his lack of robust leadership, has very little time to spend on a bar stool.

  161. Golly has the "robot" gotten some upgrade? I admit my sight is not the greatest, but this fade out deal is a bit over the top.

  162. I think they should conduct more sessions at a bar with a few drinks in them. It's worth trying.

  163. Incompetence has won. At this point we'll take ANYTHING; any movement more than a twitch.

  164. So which would be a shorter list?
    A) SJC council 2013 accomplishments
    B) Ed Hale's core compententcies

  165. Ah...seriously...dead Heron? Gone for the winter? What up? The conversation continues...but doesn't anyone wonder if the bird has flown the coop?

  166. Fun thought in the early am...

    Should We Fight Climate Change By Taxing Meat?

    Meat should be taxed to encourage people to eat less of it, so reducing the production of global warming gases from sheep, cattle and goats, according to a group of scientists.

    "Influencing human behaviour is one of the most challenging aspects of any large-scale policy, and it is unlikely that a large-scale dietary change will happen voluntarily without incentives," they say. "Implementing a tax or emission trading scheme on livestock's greenhouse gas emissions could be an economically sound policy that would modify consumer prices and affect consumption patterns."

    The FOSJ should love this. "Influencing human behavior" through coercion is fun!


  168. @10/28 10:28 PM

    He's been busy on his other blog: . Not many people commenting on that one. Maybe you folks want to get involved down there?

  169. Some time ago - never mind how long precisely - having little or no money in my purse, and nothing particular to interest me in Friday Harbor, I thought I would sail about a little and see the watery part of the County. It is a way I have of driving off the spleen, and regulating the circulation.

    Whenever I find myself growing grim about the Friends; whenever it is a damp, drizzly December in my soul; whenever I find myself involuntarily pausing before Council sessions, and bringing up the rear of every committee meeting I attend; and especially whenever the planners get such an upper hand of me, that it requires a strong moral principle to prevent me from deliberately stepping into the street, and methodically knocking people's hats off - then, I account it high time to get to the Salish Sea as soon as I can.

  170. The Irish should have fought harder, the Scotts fought each other more than the English, and the American Indians had a bad immigration policy.

  171. Wow. Excellent editorial by Sharon Kavisto regarding the CBP office and lease by Gordy.
    Basically she tells the "alliance" (are you listening Lovel??) that 1) there is a process, 2) the process was followed and 3) the time be involved in the process is, well, during the process, not after it has concluded.
    Bravo Sharon. Thanks for trying to reach the Pratt types that are udderly clueless.
    Perhaps you could consider changing your name from Sharon to Sheron? :)

  172. And here it is, the holiday week and Heron hasn't published anything in nearly a month. Our betters keep hoping this thing will die down but it just has legs, doesn't it? Maybe we should all just face this reality. Cabin fever month is right around the corner.

    Tell me please, how the public and their locally elected officials as for example the Town Council should have become involved in a process the CBP chose to keep secret from them? Sweet Jesus gimme a break.

    Let's review: 1) Individuals have property rights, this is the basis for all civil rights in this imperfect world while at the same time 2) Individuals also have the right of free association, assembly and petition.

    What we have here are these rights being robustly exercised. Isn't this a wonderful thing? This is why I love it here. Something new will emerge and this is far from over. The notion of Federalization of downtown Friday Harbor leaves a funny taste in the mouths of an awful lot of folks in the mainstream, in the middle who have no patience for the extremist rhetoric of the lunatic fringe on either side.

    Lovel is kind of a weird and pathetic little opportunist trying to take advantage of this fact, positioning herself as the adult in the room with a reasonable solution that would actually expand Federal presence downtown and make matters worse. She is sort of creepy and hopefully she will leave the building but I doubt it. She has a bone to pick with old Gordy and she is not alone. How many times in depositions overseen by Gordy did Lovel claim no recollection of her secret manipulations that sickened the public with a malignant CAO? And the case drags on, in appeal. We will see.

    Ultimately this is about the presence of Big Federal Government changing the ambiance of downtown Friday Harbor. That the Brickworks Brigade picked up on this is of course a sick joke but it is election year and they need an issue to clutch to. As for the rest of us who just want to be Left Alone, we are trying to figure out what we are dealing with:

    Is this the Nonsense Alliance vs the Commonsense Alliance?
    Monumentalists vs the Patrolists?
    Brickheads vs the Islanders?
    Democrats vs the Republicans?
    Hippies vs Rednecks?
    Progressives vs Regressives?
    Authoritarian collectivists vs Greedy individualists?

  173. So Rick, Jamie and Bob walk in to a bar.....
    Bartender says "what can I get ya?"
    Rick says "I'd like a backbone"
    Bartender says "come on man, I'm a bartender, not a miracle worker.

  174. I wonder who planted the fake bomb at the CBP office at the Port of Friday Harbor?

    And what their motivation was?

    I hope law enforcement managed to get some good evidence off the item.

  175. @ 1:52 p.m. Do not get too excited. This is at least the THIRD "fake bomb" that has been hovered over and exploded by the mainland bomb squad. Everywhere but Friday Harbor we call it trash. But no . . . in the drama capital of the Northwest, it has to be a fake bomb.

  176. While we await the return of the Big Blue Bird, will someone explain to me what constitutes the "Federalization of downtown Friday Harbor"?

    Cause the rumors about parking space, external cameras, bars on the windows, jackboots and high-powered rifles have all been disproved.

    How is it that an office where international travelers report their entry into the country by water and with nothing but the regular Customs sign on the door of the existing building has become the "Federalization" of anything, much less all of downtown Friday Harbor?

  177. Read about "constitution free zones" where the CBP has declared it has extra ordinary access to search and seizure. This has gone unchallenged in court. Read about it carefully.
    I'll admit I'm paranoid to a degree but this doesn't help ease the fear.

  178. Merry Christmas to all the Heron readers, friend and foe alike. May the Peace of Christ find your heart and provide you eternal comfort.
    May God bless all of the islanders here on Christmas Eve.

  179. @ 6:29

    And the movement of the customs office two blocks from where it has been for decades affects the abuse of the constitution you describe how?

  180. @9:01 -- seriously. It's Christmas. Give it a rest. Full on tomorrow. Or in three hours.

  181. @9:01
    No mention of the location or change of location was made in the comments you reference.
    And your childish rhetorical twist question technique littered with false accusations is useful to this dialogue how?

  182. Turns out all this yammering about jack boots actually comes from our favorite right wing gun lovin' National Rifle Association. Yep. How many conservative local members/sympathizers of the NRA are actually in favor of the largest Federal law enforcement agency setting up shop on Spring Street? Under the guise of property rights? Huh? What a joke.

    "1995-05-01 04:00:00 PDT Washington -- The National Rifle Association's top official defended the inflammatory language his organization has used about federal agents, saying yesterday that references to "jack-booted government thugs" are accurate.

    "Those words are not far, in fact they are a pretty close description of what's happening in the real world," NRA Executive Vice President Wayne La- Pierre said on NBC's "Meet the Press." LaPierre denied that there is any dissension in the 3.5-million-member group over the stridency of its positions.

    The six-page NRA letter signed by LaPierre and sent earlier this month singles out lawmakers who are pressing for gun control legislation and says: "It doesn't matter to them that the semi-auto ban gives jack-booted government thugs more power to take away our constitutional rights, break in our doors, seize our guns, destroy our property, and even injure or kill us."

    It goes on: "Not too long ago, it was unthinkable for federal agents wearing Nazi bucket helmets and black storm trooper uniforms to attack law-abiding citizens."

  183. And the NRA is right wing why? Because you say so? Because MSNBC says so?
    They are a single issue civil rights organization. They routinely endorse candidates on both sides of the aisle, regardless of their stance on immigration and abortion. And based solely on their position on the second amendment. Hell, they have even endorsed Harry Reid. Yeah, nothing says right wing like endorsing Reid.
    Oh yeah, I forgot, island of Oz. Spout off half truths and run with it.
    On a side note, other than your incorrect characterization of the NRA as right wing, I agree with the point of your post.
    Have a nice day.

  184. So, other than you don't believe the NRA is right wing (ask Harry Reid) you say you agree with the point the commenter is making?

    Ain't that somethin'

    Fantasy Island, truly ...

  185. OMG! Rick Hughes just took a principled stand on an issue.
    Just kidding folks.
    Lovel Pratt for Sheriff.

  186. The New Year is coming and we must start to march. Encourage every young family mom or dad with a backbone to get involved.

    Gotta, bury all those condescending old farts who are jealous of those with a phone, and kiss all those old farts who are not.

    Gotta get young family people involved in POLITICS! UGH.

    It will be tough, but we CAN do it!

  187. You will get dope-smoking Xbox playing 20-30 somerhings involved when you get Lovell Pratt to stop eating cake.

  188. @6:35
    So, given our islands demographic, what is considered young? Younger than 60?

  189. This community has exactly the government, and law enforcement, that they deserve.

  190. Yeah, what is a "young family."?

    I'd suggest those with children living with them year round and those children are under the age of eighteen.

    As for a "young" electable demographic suitable for this place, how about 28 to 52 or thereabouts.

    John Evans is smack on with this place needing to become much more focused on the people living here and a whole lot less focused on things we have a gnat's worth of impact on.

  191. So what's with the "young family" diatribe?

    Any real estate person will tell you that good sales values are usually associated with good local services and good schools.

    Good schools might be the #one driver of home values. It's simple, good schools got kids, lots of em.

    And, as much as I think a lot of over 60 people would prove to be valuable on the County Council the opposite has proven to be true.

    Problem is, we only have three. If we had five, two or three could be young balls to wall types with fresh ideas that could be fleshed out and strengthened by their older more experienced mentors.

    However, it's easy to see; not one major idea in a year; the moribund three we have now are pathetic. Maybe it's not just age, but that's certainly part of it. (In my view.)

  192. Is the Heron still functioning at HQ? It is smelling rather stale with at a month since a new topic. We are floundering without our rudder! Did you fly south for the winter?

    We have some fresh "meaty" topics to delve into:
    - The Mar Vista cluster with every alphabet soup agency lining up and of course the "Fiends" (misspelling intentional) and the DOE sniffing blood in the water. Just like SJC to let the DOE take the lead on this one. They know better than we do. Bad move SJC.

    - The Citizens for the Core wanting to play nice with Gordy now. They're looking for an "angel" to buy Gordy's building & follow Lovel's plan to make it into a visitor's center for a gov't alphabet soup of agencies. WTF?

    - Loose cannon cop going haywire over an Xmas eve hayride?

    There. I've spotted you three topics. Any takers?

  193. “I deplore brutality. It's not efficient.

    On the other hand, prolonged mistreatment, short of physical violence, gives rise, when skillfully applied, to anxiety and a feeling of special guilt. A few rules or rather guiding principles are to be borne in mind.

    The subject must not realize that the mistreatment is a deliberate attack on his personal identity. He must be made to feel that he deserves any treatment he receives because there is something horribly wrong with him.

    The naked need of the control addicts must be decently covered by an arbitrary and intricate bureaucracy so that the subject cannot contact his enemy directly.”

  194. Can there be a better way to end the year than to witness our very own ocean hero on the job? Dr. Easterbrook testimony re global warming back in March 2013:

  195. We could end the year with the muh loved and yet deplored TH songs.
    I actually wrote a version of "Lovel got run over by a reindeer" but decided not to post it.
    Guess you will have to wait for the tribute to Rick H, a TH version of "Candle in the Wind".

  196. We want the TH? We gotta start paying, maybe? A New Years Resolution? Start dropping a few bitcoins in the old bitcan. Maybe anything worth paying attention to these days is worth paying for. I am not a shill for the TH, by the way, but have wondered for a long time how the quality and output of this blog could be sustained as purely a labor of love, or bile. We'd all better start figuring out a way to put our money where the mouths are in this new year or we're all gonna wind up like the Scots going against Longshanks. Even if freedom, God the American way and apple pie are on our side. This is an election year. Be mad as hell and don't take it anymore. But start to crack open those piggy banks and look for ways to equip a good mercenary force.

  197. @6:49
    Just get a grant. Duh.
    Even edhale knows this.


  198. The big joke of the year is that Gordy turned out to be the best grantsman of all. edhale is a wet sneeze by comparison.

    Gordaaaay: Man of the Year. Voice of Friday Harbor. Charter Executioner. Anything you can say, he can say louder. Next thing you know, they'll line the children up against the wall and bring the sirens screaming through the streets on Xmas Eve. Uh. Oh, they did that already. OK.

    Yes in 2013 we got the Big Damn National Monument and Big Damn Law Enforcement we desperately deserve. Hell, Google Maps even has us all inside a National Monument now. Don't worry, "It's just a map. Reality is on the ground." Sure pal.

    Wake up chipmunks and remember the council that endorsed this Grand Falloon without dissent or debate because maybe it'll bring some more grant money. Oh you bet it will. Just ask the Madrona Institute and Kwiath. Uh. Oh, they did that already too. OK.

    Movin' on.

    And finally, let us give credit where credit is due: the rather shadowy "Committee for Stable Government." Remember them? Thank you Senator Ranker. Thank you John Evans. You joined forces and you will not be forgotten.

    Remember what arrived in your mailbox right when this opinion piece published around election time? No time for responsible opposing views to organize. And then you voted. How did you vote? Uh. Oh, we all did that already. OK.

    Remember the Vote NO on Prop One campaign signs in seductive sustainable green that popped up all over the county? Remember the names on that anti-Prop One mailer? Do you?

    Gordy Peterson. Bob Gamble. Rhea Miller. Tom Starr. Lisa Byers. John Evans.

    That one-two punch of the eleventh-hour Ranker/Evans opinion piece combined with that mailer warned you that "County Charter Prop 1 is the first step in a two-step process to disenfranchise you from voting on all council members."

    WTF???? Would any of these rascals like to share a bit after the fact on just what that "Two-step process to disenfranchise you from voting" was about?

    As reported in the Trojan Heron ...

    I guess I should be grateful that these wise and civic minded elders were able to swallow their differences to come together and warn the common folk of this shocking Two Step Conspiracy.

    I always thought the Two Step was a dance move. Now I'm not so sure.

    Happy New Year

  199. Any talk about Gordy getting a grant is just plain idiotic. You can hate Gordy all you want to, and if you want to, but he has a government contract, not a grant. There is a world of difference. Contracts have terms and conditions that both parties have to live up to. Contracts require performance. Grants throw money over the fence with no measurement of performance. Contracts require someone to have skin in the game. Even if grants sometimes require skin in the game at times, as in a matching grant, there is no measurement of performance.

    Grants are barely more than charity, especially to those who abuse them. Contracts are not.

    If you want to hate Gordy, go ahead, but the way you are hating him shows that you are a moron.