by Will, 02/28/2007, 1:43 PM

Liars! Liars! Liars! You guys are all liars!

City Councilman Nick Licata will be taking your questions over at the Seattle Times. Ask him about living in the PRAG house (nevermind, it’s ony viaduct questions).

Lee’s got issues with liberal bloggers writing posts about 9/11 conspiracy theories. Why, Lee? Are you a part of the conspiracy?

An update on what rural conservatives are spending your money advocating.

Does anyone know a good place to get a Reuben? I know one place, but I need to expand my Reuben universe. Put your suggestions in the comments.

by Goldy, 02/28/2007, 11:55 AM

Last week I publicly fretted that Governor Chris Gregoire might eventually paint herself into a rhetorical corner via public comments over replacing the Alaska Way Viaduct. I worried that the Governor’s increasingly adamant insistence that a rebuild is the only viable option could put her in the unenviable position of either defying the will of the voters, or appearing to cave to big, bad Seattle just as she prepares to head into what could be a tough reelection campaign. But in an exclusive interview with Lynn Allen of Evergreen Politics, the Governor has allayed my concerns.

[Is there] any way the surface and transit option would be entertained by the state?

Gregoire: Absolutely. We did entertain it earlier but couldn’t make it work. We have a set of criteria we have to meet. We have to maintain safety. We have to meet capacity for both moving freight and people in that corridor.

We’re not accommodating increases in capacity if we either rebuild the viaduct or build a new tunnel. There won’t be an increase in today’s capacity. It’s now somewhere in the neighborhood of 110,000 per day.

So, no matter what we do, we still have to maximize transit and surface. No matter what happens, there has to be a comprehensive transit component. We will need to be able to increase the capacity for moving the increase in population we are expecting.

Then, too, what we decide to do has to be fiscally responsible and friendly to urban design.

That’s why we’re working with Ron Sims. The state is saying, “Show me what you’re talking about here”. We’d like to see what the possibilities are.

As HA co-blogger Will points out, Gov. Gregoire appears to contradict herself in her use of the word “capacity” — but that’s the sort of verbal nitpicking I choose to reserve for Republicans. Taken as a whole, and in the context of the entire debate, the Governor is clearly leaving the door open to a surface solution. And I tend to agree with David Postman that this interview is entirely consistent with her prior statements, representing at most a clarification rather than a shift in position.

The Governor has repeatedly drawn a line in the sand, demanding that any Viaduct replacement must maintain capacity, a criterion some have supposed to rule out a surface alternative. But the key to accepting the surface option as both a transportation and political compromise rests on how we define the word “capacity.” WSDOT’s Environmental Impact Statement describes the purpose of the project as one that “maintains or improves mobility and accessibility for people and goods” — language the Governor clearly echoes in talking to Lynn about capacity.

As I wrote last week:

Hard-nosed rebuild supporters have mocked King County Executive Ron Sims as some kind of enviro-whacko hippie for stating that we should be focused on moving people, not cars — but that’s exactly the stated purpose put forth in the EIS. And that’s exactly the language the Governor needs, to join former tunnel supporters in support of a surface compromise.

It’s not a matter of redefining the word capacity — “mobility” was always the definition from the start, and accepting an alternative that improves mobility, while perhaps decreasing vehicle capacity, is perfectly consistent with Gov. Gregoire’s line in the sand.

That is what the Governor essentially told Lynn — she is focused on moving “freight and people,” and she is willing to work with Ron Sims “to see what the possibilities are.” I had been concerned that in championing a rebuild Gov. Gregoire might eventually paint herself into a corner, but by her own words, she has clearly reiterated that she is willing to consider a surface option, if she can be convinced that it maintains mobility. I can’t see how one can read this any other way. And no, it doesn’t represent a shift in position.

No doubt a rebuild overwhelmingly remains Gov. Gregoire’s preferred option. But if in the wake of a No/No March 13 vote Mayor Nickels can abandon the tunnel he’s championed, and campaign for a surface option without losing face (and the smart money is on exactly that,) then surely the Governor can give surface proponents the opportunity to persuade her that they can develop an alternative that meets the criteria set forth in the EIS.

And once Seattle voters speak, and the political food fight comes to an end, that’s exactly what I expect the Governor to do.

by Will, 02/28/2007, 9:21 AM

Lynn Allen gets an interview with Governor Gregoire. Here’s the Governor’s answer concerning the “surface plus transit” option:

We did entertain it earlier but couldn’t make it work. We have a set of criteria we have to meet. We have to maintain safety. We have to meet capacity for both moving freight and people in that corridor.

We’re not accommodating increases in capacity if we either rebuild the viaduct or build a new tunnel. There won’t be an increase in today’s capacity. It’s now somewhere in the neighborhood of 110,000 per day.

Gregoire says she wants to move “both freight and people.” She then cites the number of cars that use the corridor, not the number of people. I don’t know if Governor Gregoire knows the difference between moving cars and moving people, or why that’s important. Also, I have no clue how she can say that “we’re not accommodating increases in capacity” by rebuilding a viaduct or a tunnel. I don’t believe the facts bear this out.

Read the whole interview (thankfully, it’s not all about the viaduct).

by Will, 02/28/2007, 9:02 AM

Last night, at a meeting of his fellow architects, Seattle City Councilmember Peter Steinbrueck announced that he will not seek reelection this fall.

I first met Peter in the spring of 2003. I had seen an article in the Seattle Weekly about how the mayor had “targeted” certain councilmembers for defeat, and Steinbrueck was on the list. Peter was a very strong candidate; it was conventional wisdom that he would pose a serious challenge to Mayor Greg Nickels. While I liked Nickels for playing hardball (unlike previous mayors), I liked Peter more, and committed extra time to his reelection bid.

As it turns out, he was a shoe-in. Peter’s main opponent (husband of Deborah Senn, Rudi Bertschi) dropped out of the race, leaving only a token candidate (no offense, Zander). This turned out to be a great thing; I was an awful volunteer coordinator. But it was fun, and getting involved in campaigns is a great way for folks to make a difference. This is especially true in local races; you get the chance to meet and get to know the candidate.

Peter Steinbrueck will leave the city council to do what he has done during his time on the council; fight for his beliefs. He’s mentioned that he might yet run for mayor, or even Congress.

Congressman Peter Steinbrueck (D-Seattle)… I could get used to that.

by Goldy, 02/27/2007, 6:03 PM

State Sen. Janea Holmquist (R-Moses Lake) just introduced SB 6142, which very simply reads:

A member of the legislature may not introduce as prime sponsor more than fifteen bills during a legislative session, excluding committee substitute bills.

Hmm. Perhaps Sen. Holmquist has a point, considering this is the sixteenth bill she’s primed thus far this session.

by Goldy, 02/27/2007, 2:02 PM

The Seattle chapter of Drinking Liberally meets tonight (and every Tuesday), 8PM at the Montlake Ale House, 2307 24th Avenue E. Come join me for some hoppy beer and hopped up conversation.

In honor of Al Gore’s victory Sunday night at the Oscars, we’ll be screening An Inconvenient Truth tonight — the perfect antidote to the usual hot air that tends to emanate from us DL regulars.

Not in Seattle? Liberals will also be drinking tonight in the Tri-Cities. A full listing of Washington’s eleven Drinking Liberally chapters is available here.

by Will, 02/27/2007, 12:30 PM
  • Homeless people love the Viaduct. This is so very wrong, people. Very, very wrong.
  • For Lent, Nick gave up talking about the ’08 campaign. This, coming from a guy who once told me there are seven different kinds of Southern Democrats. What did Nick not give up for Lent? Astute political analysis at his blog, Electoral Math.
  • Postman:

    Chris Mulick of the Tri-City Herald writes:

    Longtime Richland state Rep. Shirley Hankins has repeatedly used the power of her office in the past five years to muscle state and local officials into directing business to her two daughters’ struggling tire baling company.

    A Herald investigation shows the Republican lawmaker’s efforts to promote Northwest Tire Recycling have ranged from carefully indirect to downright blunt, and the tactics raise questions about abuse of power.

    Hankins denies any wrongdoing or applying excessive pressure. Her hometown paper says that the work on behalf of the company included lobbying the state Department of Ecology.

    Who do I think should run against Rep. Hankins in ’08? This guy.

  • Seattle Mayor Greg Nickels is rocking the keyboard at a Seattle Times live chat tomorrow at noon right now!!!
by Will, 02/27/2007, 10:55 AM

Seattle is the sixth worst waterfront city, according to the Project of Public Spaces.

Seattle residents adore their scenic mountain vistas. But increasingly they are seeing them through windshields while stuck in gridlock on the Alaskan Way Viaduct, an elevated highway that divides downtown Seattle from the waterfront.

[...]

The situation is quite similar to what San Francisco faced in the aftermath of the 1989 Loma Prieta earthquake, which finally led the city to demolish the elevated Embarcadero Freeway. San Francisco made a difficult decision: They did not rebuild this busy artery. Today they are reaping the dividends with the greatest waterfront renaissance in the United States. Seattle could also make huge gains by taking down the Viaduct along the waterfront, and investing in transit service instead. The waterfront now feels disconnected from downtown, but the removal of the viaduct would open up new links between people and Puget Sound. Public destinations that are floundering today would flourish.

But what the fuck do they know? They’re just a bunch of people who know a lot about

“environmental design, architecture, urban planning, urban geography, environmental psychology, landscape architecture, arts administration and information management. The staff also collaborates on projects with architecture, landscape architecture and engineering firms, graphic design firms, transportation consultants, retail planners and community organizations.”

But Seattle is different and more special than every other place in the world! Nothing that worked in any other city could work here! Besides, it’s a state highway! That’s all that should matter! State highway! State highway! State highway!

by Goldy, 02/27/2007, 9:45 AM

2003590454.jpg

Come on… can anybody other than a newspaper editorial board or a stadium-struck state senator really take Sonics owner Clay Bennett seriously? Yesterday Bennett unveiled sketches of a proposed $500 million Renton arena, but….

Bennett said team owners won’t pay for any cost overruns [... and] he did not say how much owners would contribute…

So let me get this straight. The Sonics want a $500 million arena of their own design, financed by $300 million in state money, plus $100 million or so in land and cash from the city of Renton. Renton would own the arena, and be responsible for major maintenance and repairs, but the Sonics would keep all revenues from all events, and not be responsible for a penny of construction cost overruns. Of the remaining $100 million not covered by taxpayers, that would mostly be offset by naming rights, seat licenses and other such deals, bringing Bennett and his partners’ total contribution to… just about nil.

And Bennett calls a public vote on the proposal “problematic”…? No shit, Sherlock.

Given the political reality (you know… that state Sen. Margarita Prentice of Renton only has one vote,) you’d think Bennett might have tried to sweeten the pot instead of announcing that taxpayers would be stuck with the inevitable cost overruns. But then, I’ve never believed that Bennett ever seriously wanted to keep the Sonics in the Seattle area, but rather has always intended to move the team back home to Oklahoma City, where he will be welcomed as a conquering hero. In that admittedly cynical scenario the arena proposal must be just believable enough to keep gullible fans (and editors) in their seats until the Key Arena lease runs out in 2010, but outrageous enough to make the deal politically DOA.

That Bennett now says he might accept a public vote on his proposal fits in quite nicely with that strategy, dragging the process out even further while virtually assuring that such a grandiose act of corporate welfare is rejected at the polls.

So enjoy the Seattle Sonics while you can. That is, if you can enjoy a team that can’t be bothered to put a quality product on the court, even while supposedly in the midst of fight to gain public support for a new, taxpayer-funded arena.

TANGENTIAL UPDATE:
After a similar Sonics “announcement” a couple weeks back, I compared the contrasting coverage in the Times and P-I, much to the irritation of Times reporter David Postman, who accused me of being a wrong-headed, fatuous drunk.

I like Postman, and think he’s a great reporter. But he’s more than a little bit sensitive, and he took my critique as a personal attack on the Times and his colleagues. No doubt I preferred the editorial slant of the P-I’s coverage (I often do,) but whether Postman accepts my explanation or not, my main goal was to point out that different papers covering the same event often impress in readers dramatically different perceptions of the key issues at hand.

So considering our previous media criticism brouhaha, it is only fair to compare and contrast the Times and P-I in their coverage of yesterday’s Sonics “news.”

Seattle Times:

OLYMPIA — Sonics owner Clay Bennett on Monday unveiled early sketches of a proposed $500 million Renton arena and softened his stance on whether it should go to a public vote.

But Bennett said team owners won’t pay for any cost overruns. And with a Legislature skeptical over the $300 million-plus bill to taxpayers already sought, it’s not clear whether the building will ever become more than ink on paper.

At a hearing before the House Finance Committee, Bennett offered few new details about the proposed arena beyond the sketches. He did not say how much owners would contribute and said many details would have to be worked out in a lease with King County.

Seattle P-I:
OLYMPIA — After months of conjecture, Clay Bennett and his partners put a visual face on their new arena concept Monday with the release of architectural drawings of the proposed Sonics facility in Renton.

“I’m open to whatever the right answer is, whatever leadership recommends and whatever’s right for this region,” Bennett told lawmakers.

The public — as well as lawmakers — can now picture the 20,000-seat building Bennett has planned for the site, which was announced two weeks ago.

Readers of the P-I were presented with a lede that pretty much tells the story Bennett wanted to tell: a politically conciliatory Bennett released architectural drawings that enable the public and lawmakers to envision the new, proposed arena. In fact, the P-I article never even mentions anything about cost overruns or owners contributions.

The Times lede is quite a bit more nuanced… and appropriately cynical. It too starts with the visual — the sketches of the new arena — but quickly dives into the political deep-end of the story: the team won’t pay for cost overruns or commit to a contribution, and legislators remain skeptical. While the P-I says the public “can now picture” the new arena, the Times ephasizes that “Bennett offered few new details.” And though the P-I leads with a propitiative Bennett quote, the Times merely describes the Sonics owner as having “softened his stance.”

My only formal journalism training occurred way back in high school, but I’m pretty sure the admonition to put the most important information near the top, hasn’t changed much these past twenty-five years. (A rule, by the way, which I often break.) Many readers never get past the first few paragraphs, so when it comes to the release of the architectural sketches, those who picked up the P-I this morning will simply learn what happened, while those who picked up the Times will learn what it all means. Score one for the Times.

As I’ve said before: one hearing, two newspapers, two ledes.

And all the more reason to keep this a two newspaper town.

by Goldy, 02/26/2007, 9:40 PM

The Tri-City Herald’s Chris Mulick digs up the dirt on state Rep. Shirley Hankins (R-Richland):

Longtime Richland state Rep. Shirley Hankins has repeatedly used the power of her office in the past five years to muscle state and local officials into directing business to her two daughters’ struggling tire baling company.

A Herald investigation shows the Republican lawmaker’s efforts to promote Northwest Tire Recycling have ranged from carefully indirect to downright blunt, and the tactics raise questions about abuse of power.

[... Hankins] denied she’s ever used her office to promote the daughters’ business [...] but multiple interviews, letters, e-mails and other documents reveal that Hankins has actively promoted Northwest Tire Recycling in Olympia and the Tri-Cities.

Great reporting by Mulick, but will his paper follow up? Central WA blog The Other Side demands that both Hankins and the region’s editorial boards do the right thing.

The papers in the region should call for her resignation. And, of course, the only honorable thing for her to do……resign.

Hmm. I dunno. I mean, all Hankins really did was abuse the power of her office to benefit her daughters’ business, and as far as editorial-worthy scandals go, that pales in comparison to this session’s notorious Dogs-In-Bars Controversy.

As for my colleagues on the right — who fancy themselves watchdogs of government corruption — you just know that if Hankins were a Democrat they’d be screaming for her political necklacing. But I’m not gonna hold my breath waiting for cries of outrage from my friends over at (u)SP.

by Will, 02/26/2007, 2:48 PM

From the Times:

The trail would be designed as a “dual-use facility” that could accommodate a high-capacity passenger rail line sometime in the future, said one of the architects of the deal, County Executive Ron Sims.

If a final deal is reached in the coming months, the Port would pay $103 million for the rail line, then swap it with King County in exchange for county-owed Boeing Field.

The Port would also give the county $66 million to build a biking and hiking trail south of the Snohomish County line. Freight trains would continue to run between Woodinville and Snohomish.

The really important thing to remember here is this: before everyone starts arguing about what to do with the right-of-way, we had to acquire the right-of-way. Idon’t know if rail will be feasible, I don’t want the rail line eliminated in favor of a trail-only use. At least not right away.

Here’s what Goldy had to say about it back in January:

The pro-rail group wants the corridor to be converted to commuter rail now, using the existing tracks, but transit experts who have studied the route insist that it just isn’t economical. The tracks themselves have been neglected over the years and would require expensive upgrades, while current commuter patterns simply won’t support much of the route. Or at least, that’s what I’ve been privately told.

by Will, 02/26/2007, 1:16 PM

Who are these guys? The only Republicans who walk the talk when it comes to the environment.

Dan Evans made environmental conservation a priority during his three terms as Governor, and was greener than the Democrat who succeeded him.

Rep. Fred Jarrett (R-Mercer Island) is one of the few Republicans in Olympia who believes global warming is real. Heck, Fred’s one of the few Republicans who believes the Earth is more than 7,000 years old! Where do his views get him? Ostricized within the GOP caucus.

Jim Nobles currently sits on the Seattle Monorail Board, a governmental organization that won’t exist in three months. (did you think it still existed? I didn’t) Jim is an avid user of public transportation, and actually supports light rail. Jim is the only Republican office holder in Seattle in large part because he never had to run with an “R” next to his name. Still, Nobles is the kind of Republican that used to get elected to the Seattle City Council.

So, there you go, Eric. Can anyone else think of any?

by Goldy, 02/26/2007, 8:43 AM

The Seattle Times editorializes this morning, once again defending the initiative process status quo, and quite frankly its arguments are a stinking pile of shit so weak and unsupportable that they are forced to resort to the lowest of rhetorical lows… the anecdote.

In attacking efforts to impose some degree of accountability onto the process, the Times attempts to strike an emotional chord by propagandistically rising to the defense of the poor, embattled signature gatherer:

Jaye Anderson, testified about what it’s like. She said, “I’ve been spat on. I’ve had French fries thrown at me. I’ve had people following me to my car.” There are, she said, “a lot of weirdos out there.”

Like many signature gatherers, she is in her 60s, and not physically imposing. She has reason not to put her home address on the petitions, which are public documents.

Oh, boo-hoo.

I’ve had people call me up in the middle of the night threatening to come to my house and “beat the commie crap” out of me. I’ve had scores of anti-semitic comments and emails joyfully telling me that when “the Sweep” comes they want to be the first at my door, or laughing that I can have all my fancy words, “but we own all the guns.” I’ve had a load of horse manure dumped on my sidewalk, and the car tabs repeatedly scraped off my license plate in what I suppose is intended to be an ironic gesture. I’ve been falsely and maliciously reported to authorities for soliciting sex from minors online. I’ve received death threats.

As a blogger and journalist (yes, journalist) I’m at least as integral a part of our democratic process as an itinerate signature gatherer, and yet I don’t see the Times demanding that the state protect my anonymity.

Yes, initiative petitions are public records. Everybody and anybody who signs a petition is potentially putting their name and address out there for all to see. And the signature gatherer should be no different.

What the Times doesn’t tell its readers is that there have been documented cases of signature fraud throughout the nation, and that the only way to track down the perpetrators is to have them identify themselves on the petition. The Times wouldn’t protect the rights of poll workers and elections officials to remain anonymous (at least I hope they wouldn’t,) so why should they protect the anonymity of signature gatherers? Everybody who participates in the electoral process can be identified in the public record… except for the migrant, piecemeal workers who collect the bulk of our signatures. What sense is there in that?

There is nothing inviolate about the statutes currently governing the initiative process — which I should remind the Times were written by, you know, legislators — the same sort of legislators the Times now mocks and excoriates for attempting to update our laws to meet the demands of modern times. But then, I have trouble taking the Times’ holier-than-thou grandstanding seriously. Personally, I can’t help but wonder if it’s just another one of their occasional bouts of faux populism intended to cover up and facilitate (and perhaps, make themselves feel better about) the corporatist agenda their op/ed page routinely promulgates.

by Goldy, 02/25/2007, 5:38 PM

I love to talk policy, and that can get kinda wonky, but tonight on “The David Goldstein Show” I’ve got a couple of issues guaranteed to a raise few hackles… including a few of my own. So tune in to the fireworks from 7PM to 10PM on Newsradio 710-KIRO, and give me and my guests a call.

7PM: Is the WA State Legislature the proper place to debate presidential impeachment? State Sen. Eric Oemig (D-Kirkland) thinks so, and he joins me for the hour to talk about why he introduced SJM 8016, “Requesting an impeachment investigation into actions by President Bush and Vice President Cheney.” Is Sen. Oemig’s Joint Memorial a goofy waste of the Senate’s time, or a bold effort to hold the White House accountable?

8PM: Is it time to elect our Elections Director? It was my coverage of the contested 2004 gubernatorial election that first made HA a must-read blog — an election whose problems I believe were grossly exaggerated by Republicans and the mainstream media. Now with the much anticipated Gregoire-Rossi rematch coming into focus, former state Rep. Toby Nixon is rekindling the controversy by filing an initiative that would make the King County Elections Director and elected officer. Oy. I like Toby — for a Republican — which should make disagreeing with him all the more fun.

9PM: Did you watch the Oscars? I didn’t. (Because I was, um, on the air talking about politics and stuff.) So give me a call and fill me in on what happened.

Tune in tonight (or listen to the live stream) and give me a call: 1-877-710-KIRO (5476).

by Will, 02/25/2007, 4:23 PM

James Vesely, the Seattle Times columnist who referred to Darcy Burner as “Miss Bruner” several times during the Reichert-Burner debate he moderated last fall, comes to some odd conclusions in his Sunday column:

Winners: Anti-incumbents; legislators who see Seattle as losing some of its power; Dino Rossi; eager challengers to City Council members; King County Executive Ron Sims, who is working on a surface and tolling plan; and maybe the Port of Seattle by staying out of this mess.

I’m not sure which incumbents Vesely is talking about. David Della, a rebuild supporter, is the biggest target in this fall’s city elections. With every single Democratic legislative district declining to endorse a Viaduct rebuild, Della will have to clam up about his support of a big freeway on the waterfront.

Dino Rossi doesn’t seem to understand the basic parameters of the debate. Why Vesley makes him a winner is astounding. The Seattle Times seems to be going out of it’s way to make the irrelevant former senator relevant again.

Then there’s this:

The most passionate, emotional voice for the tunnel is Peter Steinbrueck’s; the calmest and most logical against a tunnel is Nick Licata’s. Go figure.

That’s weird. I was standing 10 feet away from Peter at a Friends of Seattle event when he bashed the hell out of th tunnel. You see, Peter’s for the “surface plus transit” option.

by Goldy, 02/25/2007, 10:26 AM

On the biography page of his legislative website, state Rep. Glenn Anderson (R-Fall City) proudly notes his “active” participation in Encompass (formally Children’s Services of Snoqualmie Valley), an organization whose stated mission is to “value” and “nurture” children and families.

Hmm. Perhaps I’m missing something, but I’m wondering how one nurtures children by protecting the use of products that strangle them?

A few days ago the state House passed by a 95 to 1 margin HB 1256, “Preventing serious injury and strangulation from window blind cords or other significant safety hazards in child care settings,” and Rep. Anderson cast the lone vote in opposition.

Since 1991, the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission has received 174 reports of strangulation involving cords on window blinds, including the December 2005 strangulation death of Jaclyn Frank, an eighteen-month old baby girl from Washington State, who got caught in the cords of a blind near her crib at a residential day care home. According to the House Bill Analysis, HB 1256 would update the safety standards at child care facilities:

The prohibition of the use of window blinds or other window coverings with pull cords or inner cords capable of forming a loop and posing a risk of strangulation to young children is added to the minimum safety requirements for child care licensing.

The bill would be known as the Jaclyn Frank Act.

I’ve emailed Rep. Anderson asking him to explain his vote, and I’ll post an update as soon as I hear back.

by Goldy, 02/24/2007, 6:51 PM

I’m rested, I’m tanned and I’m back. Okay, I’m kinda jet-lagged, and I’m my usual pasty-white self. But I am back, and I’m talking politics as unusual again tonight on “The David Goldstein Show” from 7PM to 10PM on Newsradio 710-KIRO. I like to go with the flow, so things could change, but here’s what I have lined up for tonight’s show:

7PM: What’s up (or down) with the Viaduct? Seattle Mayor Greg Nickels joins me at the top of the hour to talk about the latest developments in the ongoing debate over how to replace the Alaska Way Viaduct. Is WSDOT trying to bury tunnel? We’ll ask the mayor.

8PM: TBA

9PM: Did you ever get a really big break? And what did you do with it? The man who gave me my break at 710-KIRO is moving on, and I can’t thank him enough. I want to hear from you on how a big break might have changed your life, and give you the opportunity to thank your benefactor. (Or maybe, I’ll just rant about a bunch of stuff.)

Tune in tonight (or listen to the live stream) and give me a call: 1-877-710-KIRO (5476).

by Goldy, 02/24/2007, 4:03 PM

by Goldy, 02/24/2007, 9:29 AM

While sitting on the tarmac in Atlanta, I learned that yesterday was Program Director Tom Clendening’s last day at 710-KIRO.

I suppose you don’t bring in a new program director to leave the programming unchanged, so I have no idea what the future might hold for me at the station, but whatever happens I’ll remain eternally grateful to Tom for giving me the extraordinary opportunity I’ve had so far.

In truth, my brief radio career has been rather charmed. One generally doesn’t break into this business at a 50,000 watt legacy station in a major market. Most aspiring hosts work their way up from small stations in smaller markets, or through various on- and off-air jobs at larger stations. But understanding that a local news/talk audience is best served by hosts who are passionate and informed about local issues, Tom occasionally took a chance trying out raw, local talent like me.

If I have a long career in radio I’ll always have Tom to thank for giving me my start, and… well… if I don’t, then I’ll still have Tom to thank for the amazing run I’ve had. All one can ask for in life is the opportunity to succeed or fail on one’s own, and that’s what Tom gave me.

So thank you, Tom. I hope you land on your feet.

by Will, 02/23/2007, 7:52 PM