An emotional response to an emotional issue

Hmm… I’m having a little trouble getting excited about the $220 million the new federal transportation bill includes for replacing the Alaskan Way Viaduct. On the one hand, we weren’t expecting anything, and every little bit helps. On the other hand… what a bunch of fucking cheapskates.

The federal money represents 5 to 8 percent of the total cost of the project. By comparison, $220 million is less than .08 percent of the $286 billion total the bill sends to states… or to put it another way, about 2.4 percent of the roughly $9 billion in unaccounted for cash that was stuffed into duffle bags in Iraq. Nice to know we have our priorities straight.

I don’t want to sound ungrateful, but let’s be honest, if a double-decker freeway was on the verge of pancaking a couple hundred Texans, there’d be a billion or more in federal dollars thrown at the project. And of course, if I-912 repeals the gas tax hike, then we can kiss even our paltry $220 million goodbye.

A lot of people are playing up the potential loss of this money as a selling point for defeating I-912, but I’m wondering if that argument might be counterproductive. Judging from some of the nastier emails and comments I’ve received lately, there are many in Eastern WA who would be absolutely giddy over the chance to deny Seattlites a couple hundred million in federal aid. Hell… there are some folk out there who could absolutely give a shit about whether the Viaduct collapses, a sentiment that was clearly expressed in the following missive from “James” with the fake email address:

“… I hope it comes down during rush hour. A few hundred dead liberals might make the difference in the next election.”

I suppose “James” thought he was being funny, and I certainly wouldn’t argue that all I-912 supporters are such total and complete assholes. But a comment like this is just more evidence that this has become an emotional issue, not a rational one, and that we don’t have a chance of defeating I-912 merely on the basis of sound public policy arguments. We need to start making it clear to people in Eastern WA, and other rural voters, exactly what they’re going to lose if I-912 passes. And I’m not just talking about the specific local transportation projects that the gas tax hike is intended to fund. I’m talking about what they risk losing in the future: our good will.

If they want to balkanize state transportation funding, fine. Because while King, Pierce and Snohomish counties have the majority of the infrastructure needs, we also own the vast majority of the state’s wealth, and in the short run, Seattle voters have the most to gain from spending all gas tax dollars locally. Ironically, if I were to seriously run an initiative that requires transportation revenues to be spent locally, its most fervent supporters would come from Eastern WA. What a bunch of dumb fucks.

But while we’re on the subject, why just balkanize transportation dollars? Let’s devolve the state portion of the property tax to local school districts, and let that money be spent locally too. After all, it’s not my problem if some poor kid out in Ferry County get’s a crappy education. If parents can’t afford private tuition, that just represents a moral failing on their part, doesn’t it?

I mean really… why should I give shit about you people if you don’t give a shit about me? Hell, I only drive east of the pass once or twice a year, and if the roads on the other side fall apart, I’ll just borrow or rent an SUV for those occasional excursions. So go ahead… split the state in two… divide King County between rural and urban… drop your taxes, raise your Confederate flags, and collapse into the ranks of a third-world economy. We’ll just sip our microbrews and lattes and laugh… before we buy up anything left of value, until all of Eastern WA is comprised of little more than the quaint vineyards and gentleman-ranches of dot.com millionaires.

See… we didn’t so much mind subsidizing the schools that educate your children and the roads you drive on and the ports that bring your products to market, until you started pissing on us in return. The Viaduct and the 520 bridge are crucial to our economy, and we’re going to rebuild them, with or without you… but if it’s without you, then Katie bar the door, because you’ll have driven me and a whole bunch of other urban voters firmly into the “fuck you” camp. And you know what? There’s more of us than there are of you… so prepare to be fucked.

And one more thing… nothing tastes better than a firm, crisp, tangy New Zealand braeburn apple… so hell if I’m going to continue buying mealy, WA state, storage apples out-of-season, simply out of some misplaced sense of loyalty. So there.

Comments

  1. 2

    Thomas spews:

    yawn….your mad…..yawn…..mean people suck….yawn….where that next petition?….see goldy dance about….

  2. 3

    righton spews:

    gotta love GOP odds w angry whiners like Goldy out there. You really think latte drinkers on capitol hill are subsidizing working stiffs in chelan?

  3. 4

    Thomas spews:

    the funny part is that you pretend you care about these people, and that if they only got with the program everything would be scones and lattes. Now if they were Foreign national terrorists, illegal aliens, child abusing parents, or brow beat compromising republicrats they would have nothing to worry about, play the game, vote the way we say, shut up, and we will throw some crumbs your way…kinda let them eat cakeish don’t ya think?

  4. 5

    GBS spews:

    The point is some Seattelites depend on the viaduct to get around downtown, I’m one of them.

    Everyone in this state depends on the wealth that is transported over, under and around the viaduct. Keeping the traffic infrastructure structurally sound is vital to the entire economy of our state.

    So why be against upgrading a portion of our states highway system that is vital to our economy and is a potential hazard to the citizens who use it?

  5. 6

    W. spews:

    You really think latte drinkers on capitol hill are subsidizing working stiffs in chelan?

    If those latte drinkers drive cars, they sure do.

  6. 7

    W. spews:

    So why be against upgrading a portion of our states highway system that is vital to our economy and is a potential hazard to the citizens who use it?

    Because thay involves turning off talk radio and looking past their own immediate self-interests.

  7. 8

    EvergreenRailfan spews:

    I can see why Some in Seattle would want the Viaduct replaced by a tunnel. The Viaduct itself was built when the Waterfront was a place where every inch of it was dedicated to loading and unloading of cargo. Containerization made a lot of that land surplus. The Watefront could be better without the Viaduct now. Also their is a Seawall that is even older than the Viaduct that needs to be replaced. Since the tunnel would be cut and cover, they would have to open up Alaskan Way anyway, and gives the city a chance to fix the Seawall.

    I am one that would like to see transportation planning and funding in urban areas be given to regional authorities, and leave the state out of it.

  8. 9

    Brent spews:

    Why do some of you think that those who vote for I-912 think it’s anti-tax, anti-roads? It’s hardly the case.

    When our DOT has the track record of continually misleading the public on the costs, what the hell are we left to think? We vote $350 million on a new Narrows bridge, yet are likely to pay in excess of $1 billion, heads need to roll. And that’s only one example.

    When the DOT gets their act together and actually builds some roads that serve the greater good (i.e. no HOV lanes, no mass transit, etc), then we can talk raising taxes. What pisses me off is seeing Hwy 18 and the next round of widening. Why didn’t they just do that 8 years ago? These DOT morons seem to enjoy dragging projects out decades rather than being cost effective and doing (gasp) more than 1 lane at a time. To me, that just leads to job security for them.

    In Pierce County, the tax dollars from the gas tax were to go for what? HOV lanes through Tacoma and to the Narrows Bridge? What a complete waste of money. If only 5-10% of traffic use them, how do they serve the greater good? We’re paying $1 billion plus tolls for 2 HOV lanes. Is that not asinine?

    If and when the DOT can present sound, logical plans for highway development, then I’ll listen. Otherwise, don’t ask for more money for aimless, useless projects. This isn’t about Democrat or Republican, this is about common sense. To only serve the minority of the population for a traffic mess is so absent-minded, it’s numbing.

    The lone exception I hold to this is the Viaduct. Yes, it does need to be replaced, and Mr. Nickels and his 2-cent head need to be cost-concious and scrap the tunnel idea. Hello, Big Dig redux!

    With regards to the 520, I’ll be honest. I don’t know enough about it to form an opinion. However, I certainly hope that plans don’t include just 1 lane or just 1 HOV lane.

    Let’s have projects that make a difference! That’s all I want.

    Is that too much to ask for?

  9. 10

    Ben Schiendelman spews:

    Brent…

    The 520 will only add one lane each way, and they’ll be HOV. Why not apply your logic about the Viaduct to that project, and recognize that a billion dollars for an extra lane each way isn’t cost effective?

  10. 11

    Heath spews:

    Righton:

    I’m a Capitol Hill latte drinker. I’d love to fist-fight you over your attitude, if you’re down with that.

    Otherwise, yes, I am really sick of subsidizing all you rednecks in Chelan and elsewhere.

    Please get Eyman to drive an initiative splitting your part of the state off. Here in Seattle, we are sick of all you leeches.

  11. 12

    Ben Schiendelman spews:

    Righton: Actually, Seattlites *do* subsidize eastern WA. Where do you think hundreds of millions of dollars worth of I-90 funding comes from? The 35,000 people in Kittitas county?

  12. 13

    zip spews:

    Goldy, you’ve finally gone the rest of the way off the deep end. Or are you purposely avoiding the real reason 912 has so much support, in order to continue preaching to your choir?

    The state plays a shell game with our taxes! That is the problem in a nutshell. People see through this BS about this one tax being repealed meaning the viaduct can not be replaced. Ever heard the term “fixed overhead”? Well there’s too much of it in the DOT budget. Naturally the regular gas tax pays for all the OH but the projects we really need have to be funded with an unpopular tax increase. This federal money being held out as ransom is just going to win over more cynics who are tired of our so called leaders playing these games on real issues.

    By the way, your school funding scenario is clearly unconstitutional. Maybe you should start an intiative for it.

    By the way again, the gas tax is REGRESSIVE! Why would a so called “progressive” get so worked up over keping a regressive tax? Because more taxes are the main goal of all you so called progressives, you don’t care who pays.

  13. 14

    Ben Schiendelman spews:

    zip;

    Do you have another suggestion for the transportation taxes?

    And actually, this tax being repealed would mean at least two years of delay on the viaduct being replaced.

  14. 16

    Ben Schiendelman spews:

    Prioritize what? Tell me, exactly what transportation projects can we wait on?

  15. 17

    Heath spews:

    zip: Progressives are for PROGRESS overall, not specifically a progressive marginal taxation schedule. It’s true that we view a progressive marginal income tax schedule as progress toward a better and more economical society.

    You may be interested to know that last month’s issue of Futurist totally debunks the ‘trickle down’ propaganda your leaders have been feeding you.

    As for the gas tax, it is also progress if we create economic incentives away from gasoline. We excise tax alcohol and tobacco because they are wasteful and deadly; the same is true of gasoline and the internal combustion engine.

    If you’re going to attack us, you’ll need to make points that are true instead of just messing around with words that don’t mean what you are trying to say.

  16. 19

    EvergreenRailfan spews:

    How many lanes would a Viaduct Tunnel have? About 6. Also with SR520, it will be an entire new span, you cannot add an extra lane to a bridge that has no room on it. Also with I-90, the replacement Lacey V. Murrow, has only 3 lanes because of the requirement for a shoulder, why not do the same with the tunnel in Mt. Baker. They should have redesigned the tunnel to be at least 3 lanes, with 2 breakdown lanes as well. currently one tube has NO Breakdown lanes, the other has 1.(I am not talking about the Westbound Span, because it has a different name).

    I have heard ideas on the Internet about the Trans-Texas Corridor, and it could work well for improving I-90 in Eastern Washington, and perhaps be a great compromise on that I-605 proposal.(Personally I am against another Freeway in King County going NOrth-South, but if it were combined with a rail bypass for Puget Sound, it might work, especially if BNSF and UP invest in it.)

    I read about a cross-cascade tunnel proposal Northern Pacific RR proposed when the briefly considered a lower level replacement for Stampede Pass, and invited both the Milwaukee Road and the State HIghway Deparmtent to come along with their proposal, but all three seemed to give up as too expensive. NP’s problem was that freight trains were getting longer, and the Z-3 2-6-6-2 Mallet class engines were no longer able to handle Stampede without helper locomotives. Yellowstones and Challengers(NP’s most powerful steamers) could not fit through Stampede, and to ask for trackage rights on the Milwaukee and abandoning Stampede was out of the question(loss of land grants, still a big revenue for the Railroad even in the thirties), but GM came along with the Diesel-Electric, and all talk of electrifying the Stampede Pass line, using cab-forward Yellowstones(the big fireboxes designed to burn low-grade coal produced a lot of smoke for traditional cab Yellowstones), or the low level tunnel was over. Great Northern should have considered the idea of having a highway tunnel alongside the Stevens Pass Tunnel.

  17. 20

    NoWonder spews:

    Ben Schiendelman @ 12

    ‘Where do you think hundreds of millions of dollars worth of I-90 funding comes from?’

    The “35,000 people in Kittitas county” could care less if I90 was even there. I90 and I5 provide the supply chain for the larger metropolitan areas. Clip off I90 and I5 outside of Seattle and see how high your prices go. Most of Seattle’s goods would have to come by sea, which generally means China. How ironic.

  18. 21

    L. H. Smith spews:

    Here’s an idea: put a toll on the viaduct so the folks that use it the most can pay for it. That’s what they’re doing for the new Narrow’s Bridge. The folks in Pierce county get to pay for that one, three bucks at a time! Of course, I fully expect the toll to be $5 by 2010 and $20 by 2020.

    I’m sure the folks in the People’s Socialist Democratic Republic of King County don’t give a rip about us poor stiffs in Pierce County, though. After all, we’re just “253 people” and exist mostly so King County can have someone to look down upon.

  19. 22

    Brent spews:

    Ben @ 10 –

    I agree. I cross the Narrows Bridge daily (reverse commute) and it makes me sick to my stomach to see something so pointless.

    On a serious note, does anyone really think that adding 1 HOV lane each direction will solve anything? It should be 4 general purpose lanes.

    But then again, that’d just make too much sense. Plus, the DOT wouldn’t be able to come back and ask for more money to build the double-decker portion they’re enabling the new bridge to become…

    Ignorance and incompentince just don’t do justice to describe the DOT…

  20. 23

    Donnageddon spews:

    Why not just drain Lake Washington and pave it over? It would make a bitchin’ skatepark, and open up a lot of room for roads and freeways.

    Course the Mercer Island wealthy will not be pleased, but hey, we all gottas make sacrifices.

  21. 24

    NoWonder spews:

    ‘..if a double-decker freeway was on the verge of pancaking a couple hundred Texans, there’d be a billion or more in federal dollars thrown at the project.’

    I actually despise the greediness Congress shows when mining for pork. Yet the fact remains that Democrats in a Republican Congress get squat. If you want to solve this the old-fashioned way either get a majority of Dems in Congress (probably your preference) of elect some decent Repubs (my preference) in WA.

  22. 25

    HowCanYouBePROUDtobeALucyLesshead? spews:

    Get a clue Goldy – Washington is a pissant little nothing state represented by 2 useless pissant little senators and an illegitimate pissant governor (givernor?) who is too busy giving herself and her minions raises.

  23. 26

    Ben Schiendelman spews:

    NoWonder: Go see how many products you have that are made in another country. Seriously. You’re not typing on something made in the US. You’re VASTLY dependent on I-90.

    Brent: 8 lanes won’t do anything. The issues on 520 are not of capacity – a standard 4 lane highway on a flat can handle much more traffic than 520 sees now. The issue is that the right-of-way requires several dips and turns that blind drivers. Combined with minimal shoulders on the bridge, this causes drivers to slow down, creating a wave effect that castrates the highway’s effectiveness.

    The DOT recognizes that there is no way to move the alignment – but that HOV all the way across WILL get people to use transit as it becomes more reliable (a dedicated lane most of the way) and carpool. They will also be reducing use with tollbooths for single occupancy vehicles – and help pay for it that way rather than a long-term tax. Light rail to the east side will also reduce congestion – many commuters will choose that because it will be as fast as or faster than driving in traffic.
    The basic idea is that 520 is going to sink if we don’t fix it – and that would cause billions per year, possibly tens of billions, in negative economic impact.

  24. 27

    herbalizer spews:

    I’d absolutely love to split the state in two. Let all the red neck, trailer trash, bigots have their ultra conservative hell hole all to themselves. The educated blue state folks over here on the west side can make this area in into the most liberal place on the planet. Bye bye white trash! We hate you! Don’t call! Don’t come back!

  25. 29

    EvergreenRailfan spews:

    24

    I found this plan from an urban area in a Red-State in the Rocky Mountains. It got good voter approval last year, $4.7 Billion over 12 years is the cost in that region.

    http://www.rtd-denver.com/fastracks/

    Toll Collection technology has changed, allowing for fewer tollbooths, or even eliminating them enirely. Perhaps a toll plaza with 2 manned booths each way and 2 automated ones that do not even have the drivers slow down, as it is collected electronially.

  26. 30

    Brent spews:

    HOV just isn’t convenient, and when 5-10% (generously speaking) are the only ones using it, is that really effective?

    Or would having more general purpose lanes, which the remaining percentage use, be more effective?

    You can’t force people into commuting or mass transit. It simply won’t work. Regions like New York were developed around that idea, not something added after development.

    I’d love to use the Sounder or something of that sort to go to Mariner games, but the reality is that it’s just not convenient.

    The majority is a selfish society who prefers to take themselves to and from work, and the likelihood of people commuting from Tacoma to Seattle to work at the same place is just unrealistic. There are many more ‘fishes to fry’ on our roads before we worry about controlling the masses or forcing them out of their car.

  27. 31

    Ben Schiendelman spews:

    RailFan, I’m a railfan too, btw. :)

    Yes, DOT plans to use boothless toll recovery. Sorry, I didn’t mean real tollbooths. :)

  28. 32

    Ben Schiendelman spews:

    Brent, the reality is that the extra two lanes wouldn’t help congestion much at all – and that the buses running over the bridge are, for the most part, at capacity. The HOV lanes will add more capacity than two regular use lanes.

    520 Bridge users on transit account for over 10% already, and it’s expected that the numbers will double as reliability increases. It actually is convenient for Seattle residents to use the bus to get to the eastside, and that’s something the ridership numbers back up.

  29. 33

    bluesky spews:

    It’s painful to read the hate between the east and west sides of the Cascades. To you west side people spewing scorn to those living on the east side (“herbalizer,” e.g.), please keep in mind there are a lot of Dems over here trying to do good amongst some extremely established rightwing republicans. Would you close out all of us? Or would you rather work together to keep the state whole? Your stereotypes and vile are no different from those spewed by the rightwingers in these comments. Feh.

  30. 34

    Ben Schiendelman spews:

    By the way, Brent, the “selfish society” argument is a myth. Everywhere that dedicated transit systems are built (just look at Vancouver and Portland), ridership largely goes as high as frequency allows. Hell, downtown Seattle already uses something like 30% public transit.

  31. 35

    Ben Schiendelman spews:

    bluesky, thank you! I was disappointed by what I read there. We’re one state, and we have needs that intertwine inextricably.

  32. 36

    NoWonder spews:

    herbalizer @ 25

    ‘..can make this area in into the most liberal place on the planet.’

    You will have to get in line behind China, the old USSR, North Korea, Cuba. They have a head start.

  33. 37

    Richard Pope spews:

    $220 million for the Alaskan Way project may very well be just under 0.08% of $286 billion in federal highway money. But Seattle has just under 600,000 people, which is about 0.2% of the USA population. So we have nearly 40% of Seattle’s pro-rata dollars from the massive federal package going to Alaskan Way, but still covering only 5% to 6% of the total cost.

    Maybe a better question to ask would be WHY IS THE DAMN THING GOING TO COST OVER FOUR BILLION DOLLARS?

    Also, while rural areas do get some state “gas tax subsidy”, very little of it comes from King County. During the 20 years 1984 to 2003, King/Pierce/Snohomish Counties got back 98 cents out of every dollar in state gas tax that they paid in the form of local projects:

    http://www.soundpolitics.com/archives/004823.html

    Rural areas did get back $1.52 for every dollar paid, but this subsidy came from the other urban counties, not from Seattle/Tacoma/Everett. Spokane got back 74 cents, Yakima 74 cents, Clark/Vancouver 74 cents, Whatcom/Bellingham 61 cents, and Benton/Franklin/Tri-Cities 89 cents.

    And even this analysis overstates the benefits to rural areas. For example, Interstate 90 through sparsely populated Lincoln and Adams Counties is used primarily by folks in the Seattle and Spokane metro areas, and out-of-state travelers.

    In any event, the 9.5 cent per gallon tax hike will result in King County getting back nearly $2.00 for every additional dollar paid, while some rural counties will be lucky to get back a dime for every dollar paid.

  34. 38

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    I have a better plan to balkanize Washington’s transportation system. All we have to do is stop subsidizing rural gas stations. Then the rednecks in Chelan and Ferry counties won’t have to pay ANY gas taxes because they won’t have any gas to pay taxes on. Apparently James doesn’t realize it takes government dole to keep a rural gas station open because the small communities can’t support a gas retailer.

  35. 39

    NoWonder spews:

    Ben Schiendelman @ 24

    ‘Seriously. You’re not typing on something made in the US. You’re VASTLY dependent on I-90.’

    I actually live on the west side near Portland, OR, and my keyboard happens to be made in the USA.(I know that the USA keyboard is rare.) I would speculate, however, that most of the goods transported on I90 and I5 are just passing through. The goods to and from the counties on the east side could never justify the interstates.

  36. 40

    Richard Pope spews:

    RR @ 36

    Do we really subsidize rural gas stations? I thought they charged more in order to make up for lower volume and higher transport costs.

  37. 41

    Ben Schiendelman spews:

    NoWonder – your keyboard may have been *assembled* here, but the parts came from overseas. And it was still shipped to you – maybe even over I-90.

    Richard: SoundPolitics numbers are not a source.

  38. 42

    Diogenies spews:

    I grew up in Eastern Washington working in the apple orchards and the warehouses and the fields, and ninety-nine percent of the people I kenw were good, generous, loving people.

    I still have a lot of family and friends over there, and though they are pretty much all conservative, I get along with them famously.

    Now I live in Seattle I work in an office and drive the freeway and surface streets every day and I find ninety-nine percent of the people here are good, generous, loving people.

    So what happened? When did we become so divided? Are we dumb beasts incapable of communication?

    It’s sad really.

    As far as I can tell, no one is against maintaing the roads. I find the pro-I912 people’s logic that they wouldn’t mind paying the taxes if there was a clearer plan hard to understand. Surely we all understand that planning something as complicated as the viaduct replacement and 520 is going to be a long-drawn out process.

    I heard the head of the DOT talk about the plans for 520 and the viaduct and he was pretty specific.

    I hate to say it, but I think a lot of people have been swayed by John Carlson and Kirby Wilber into thinking the whole deal is a boondoogle and a good way to get back at Gregoire and the “liberals” for the election.

    Okay.

  39. 43

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    38

    That’s my undestanding, yes, that there’s a program that helps small communities from losing their only source of gas.

  40. 45

    NoWonder spews:

    Ben Schiendelman @ 39

    You missed my main point. The interstate highways, which are the major road money sinks in the rural counties, are not there to serve those counties. They serve the large metropolitan centers. If you own a house that is accessed over an easement on another property and pave the driveway it is not a subsidy for the neighbor.

  41. 46

    Ben Schiendelman spews:

    NoWonder, your point is really just invalid. Everyone, every little rural community, relies on an interstate to ship goods to them and to ship out the goods they produce. Do you know how far your food travels to get to you? Check it out sometime.

  42. 47

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    40 (continued)

    As far as I-912 goes, a rural backlash against the 9 1/2 cent gas tax increase must be expected. People in rural counties drive long distances just to shop for groceries or fill their gas tank. Many of the jobs in those areas pay under $10 an hour. The $2.50 gas is a real kick in the pants, and now the state wants another dime for projects in Seattle. You can’t expect them to support something like that. But eastern Washington has only 20% of the state’s population, and I-912′s fate won’t be decided by voters in Grant, Chelan, and Ferry counties.

    It will take affluent urbanites in King, Pierce, and Snohomish counties to pass I-912. The rest of the state can’t pass I-912 without a substantial number of votes from those 3 counties because over 1/2 the state’s voting population lives in those 3 counties. I-912 will pass if — and only if — a substantial number of people who would be directly and immediately affected by a transportation collapse in King County are willing to run that risk. Kirby Wilbur and John Carlson aren’t talking to eastern Washington listeners. KVI broadcasts in Seattle, and Wilbur and Carlson are making their pitch to King County listeners.

    They might succeed, just as kids playing with guns sometimes succeed in shooting themselves. The analogy is apt because I-912 is playing with fire. If this effort to stave off terminal gridlock fails, we probably won’t get another chance.

    We can’t wait for perfection, because perfection will never come. There is no such thing as a perfect project that satisfies everyone. The accountability and planning arguments are red herrings. There’s already tons of accountability and planning. The loons warbling about not knowing what DOT will do with our money are ignorant only because they choose to ignore the mountainous pile of information available to anyone willing to exert the effort to look at it.

    The truth is, the 520 bridge, viaduct, and seawall are relics of a vanished time designed for a much smaller population and with much less understanding of seismic hazards. Even if there is never another earthquake, they are crumbling from age. How many of the people who plan to vote for I-912 are driving cars with 250,000 miles on them? Yet, they’d vote to keep driving on a structure built in the 1950s until it falls down? That can only be attributed to irrationality.

    And — I-912 clearly are not thinking of the future at all. Washington’s population is projected to grow 30% — from 6.2 million to over 8 million — by 2025. The bulk of that growth will occur in the Puget Sound area. Without any expansion of the region’s existing infrastructure, today’s congestion will look like child’s play by comparison. Yet, if I-912 passes, we won’t just freeze the building of new capacity, we’ll actually LOSE capacity at a time of rapid population growth, because there is no chance at all that either AWV or the 520 bridge will still be in service 20 years from now.

    A vote for I-912 is a vote to wreck Washington’s economy, and the shock waves will be felt all the way to the Idaho and Oregon borders.

  43. 48

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    NoWonder doesn’t realize most areas of eastern Washington are growing animal feed or wheat for export to China. Without I-90, people in Moses Lake would be eating alfalfa for breakfast, lunch, and dinner.

  44. 49

    Thomas spews:

    too many people think, thats the problem.:)….cuz washington state guberment is so efficient remember Whoops!, and Sound Transit, and the “emergency” stadiums, and don’t forget the tabs tax “slushfund”. Its not “no”, its explain it to me, with hard numbers ….cuz if its too complex for us, guess what…its probably too complex for you as well.

  45. 50

    Richard Pope spews:

    Let’s don’t forget the ridiculous Port of Seattle tax levy, which will cost King County property owners $62.7 million this year. There are very few honest thinking people out there — whether liberal, conservative, or otherwise — who think it is appropriate to ding taxpayers so hard in order to subsidize shipping companies and cruise lines (and to a lesser extent, airlines as well).

    This is equivalent to six cents per gallon gasoline tax for King County. It buys absolutely nothing, since there is no reason why shipping and aviation can’t carry their own weight. (Most other port authorities are not tax-subsidized, and many even make a profit to return to local government.)

  46. 51

    Ivan spews:

    You know what? We used to have a way of raising transportation money. The ones who drove the biggest, heaviest, most expensive vehicles who put the most wear and tear on the state’s highways — the semis, the buses, the RVs — paid more than people who drove motorcycles, little cars, and old beaters that were worth less.

    It was called the Motor Vehicle Excise Tax, and the money the state got from it funded the ferries and other transportation, in addition to helping us maintain and repair and uograde our roads.

    It was a progressive tax, too. If you didn’t have a car, you paid nothing. If you rode the bus, Metro paid the MVET and passed it on to you.

    Then that piece of shit Tim Eyman came along with I-695, and all the dumb gomers who are pushing I-912 voted for it. Even when it was declared unconstitutional, Gutless Gary Locke and the gutless Legislature slashed the car tabs down to $30 because they were afraid of all the dumb gomers.

    Now we’re trying to repair and maintain our highways again, and the same dumb gomers don’t want to let us.

    Don’t listen to that crap about the DOT. Fact is, whatever the DOT does it will not satisfy these people. They are the flat earth, free lunch party. They want everything for nothing.

    Go over to Sound Politics if you can’t get enough of their rationalization. They only send their second string over here. All government is bad, it’s all LEFTIST PINHEADS. To hear them rant, only they work, only they pay taxes, only they create wealth. Our state should belong only to those who can pay for it, which of course is them.

    There’s only one issue in the I-912 campaign: “Do you want your state run by dumb fucking rednecks?”

    It’ll pass, have no fear, and we’ll be back to the drawing board, coming up with solutions. Because that’s who we are and that’s what we do. Sooner or later we’ll get our roads fixed, and Cynical and Chuck and Sharkansky and all the rest of them will either pay for it (of course it will cost more the longer it takes), or move to Pus Boil, Mississippi, or someplace where they can feel good about being the dumb fucking rednecks that they are.

    I’m for bringing back the MVET. Sooner or later we’ll get it. Meantime, I can’t wait till Zip or Mark or “Amused” or one of those other assholes hits a pothole that went unrepaired for lack of money, and a front-end alignment costs them more than their gas tax would have been.

  47. 52

    T.J. spews:

    Ben @ 13

    You make the same mistake in allocating dollars to regions as the Seattle Times and P.I. did.

    The I-90 project in Kittitas Co. (That is the county that borders King to the east after Snoqualmie Pass, for all you Seattlites) That is $435 million that you would allocate to E. Washington.

    Your logic is flawed because you are not concidering the purpose of the project, which is to keep the pass open, making the transporting of goods (i.e. food) more cost effective. The project only exist so that folks in W. Washington don’t have to pay more for cherries and apples. I am not going to argue that E. Washington does not benefits from it because they do, but it is a project that equally benefits the whole state. You only assign those dollars to that one County.

    Take my logic and tell me the great economic advantage to folks in Chewelah (give you nickle if you know where that is) of having an Alaskan Way Tunnel instead of a viaduct on the Seattle water front.

  48. 54

    T.J. spews:

    Herbalizer @ 27

    You may want to take it easy on the herbs brother.

    How are you going to go on a tirade about calling folks rednecks and bigots, and then end your post by calling people white trash???

    And for your educated blue stater thing, let me ax ya dis, if I am a dumb piece of trailer trash (which by the way, is a moniker I wear with pride), who come I manged to make it through a 4 year degree in 15 months with a 3.8 GPA, without by the way, one dollar of financial aid or students lones.

    Man, I really am a dumb hick. And I know pleanty more just like me. Your worst nightmare, educated white-trash!!!

  49. 55

    Heath spews:

    You people. The interstate highways are there to allow our military to defend us against inland invasions.

    But as for cherries and apples coming over the pass, I’d rather have a buried viaduct than affordable cherries and apples. Frankly, the agriculture in the east side of the state isn’t that important. The east side of the state is a desert, for those of you who don’t know.

    The reason we need a tunnel and not a viaduct is to improve the view from the 619 building. I’ll give you a nickle if you know where that is.

    Yes, I’m being facetious in this post. I can’t take these opinions seriously, anymore. I’m sorry people aren’t into divisiveness, because truly we are already divided.

  50. 57

    T.J. spews:

    On the whole, I do sort-of agree with Goldy’s overall hypothesis that this is a gut emotional issue. (I don’t agree totally, but that overall theme seems to be sound).

    Someone earlier posted asking for an alternative campaign financing plan. Here it is;

    Local tolls, which stay local and are allocated with in a regional transit plan.

    Immediate cutting of the gas tax by 10 and eventually phase it down to about 10 cents total or to zero.

    A .5 cents a mile tax which is paid upon reregistering your vehicle anually. (for someone driving 25,000 miles a year, that would be $125 a year) By scaling down the gas tax you come out ahead, I’ll explain more on that in another post. This money would go to the state for the transportation budget.

    Farm equipment and tractor/trailers would be exempt from this tax. Any cost added to them only gets passed on to Joe Customer (that is you) anyway. Lets cut out the middleman. Later one this exception could be used to incourage folks to by hybreds or alternative fuel-cell cars (when they hit the market) by adding them to the except list.

    As much as I love $30 tabs, the price should adjust in $2 increments with inflation. Which means by 2010 our tabs should run about $34 to $36. This money would go to the WSDOT operating budget, with surpluses going to an “emergency projects fund”.

    And here is the best part; yes I am a Republican and yes I am suggesting a new government regulation, make this day in your books. We should have an annual state vehicle safety inspection. Once a year, all cars should be taken to a ASE certified inspection station (private sector fine by me), and have the breaks, lights, tires, etc… checked. Why not register a vehicle which puts out to much CO2 when we will licence one without proper brakes or bald tire. This also could lower auto insurance rates in the state.

    So there it is the T.J. Transit Plan. Don’t call us an upstructions or a minority party without an alternative.

  51. 58

    Bobblehead spews:

    NoWonder @ 36

    You will have to get in line behind China, the old USSR, North Korea, Cuba. They have a head start.

    And you conservatives will have to line up behind Iran, Syria, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Somalia, and Pakistan. They’ve got the whole screw the poor and imprison/torture/kill anyone that disagrees with you down pat.

    But then I’m making a stereotype and understand that only the uninformed bigots are unable to see that liberalism and conservativism is a spectrum. I also understand that because France arbitrarily decided that those that believed laws come from God, King, and the ruling minority would sit on the right side of the building and those that believe laws come from the people on the left side of the building, the fact that religious extremists reside on the right side of the building it doesn’t mean everyone on that side of the building share their opinions on everything.

  52. 59

    Curious George spews:

    Heath @ 55 -

    “…Frankly, the agriculture in the east side of the state isn’t that important. The east side of the state is a desert, for those of you who don’t know…”

    Really…. Have you driven between Moses Lake and Spokane lately?

    There’s an area there that’s about 100 by 150 miles that is mostly wheat. It’s not irrigated (assorted orchards & other vegetable crops excepted).

  53. 60

    T.J. spews:

    Why Gas Taxes Are Bad. By T.J.

    The gas tax is an example of what I call a “multi-point tax” (I have not copy-writed that term so feel free to use it).

    By this, I mean that you this tax at more than one place (not just the pump). By raising gas 10 cents (don’t kid yourselves, no gas station in the state will up prices 9.5 cents, it is a 10 cent increase). Every gallon of gas you by is 10 cents more. If you drive 20,000 miles year @ 20 miles a gallon, that is 1000 gallons of gas a year, that will cost you $100 extra a year for gas. That by itself does not sound bad. That is one point.

    The problem is that, the farmer growing corn, who uses around 100,000 of fuel a year has $10,000 added to his. In a business with very little margin for error (maybe 2%), that is a big deal. That cost is passed on the the farmer’s customer, the wholesaler/distributer. That is a second point.

    That distributer has now had his bottom line increased by making up the farmer’s fuel cost. The distributer also has to pay the increased cost of fuel. Imagine how much fuel that is a year!!!
    Those increases are passed on to their customers (your local grocery store), that is now a third point.

    Safeway, Freddies, Albertson’s Larry’s, whoever, now has to pay more just to get the product to them. That has now raised there cost of doing business. Your grocery store has all it’s products brought to a regional location and disperced to individual stores from there. That activity is now 10 cents more per gallon. They use a ton of fuel I bet. That is now a fourth point.

    All of those increases compile on eachother. And guess who is at the end of the line, that right boys and girls, good old Joe Customer (again, that is you). That is just corn, multiply that by every product you by. That is what I call a “multi-point tax)

    Now that everything is more expensive, I am sure you are going to want you boss to give you a cost of living adjustment. Guess what so does everyone else. Which means wages now increase at at every point discussed earlier just compounding the problem with soaring price of products.

    THAT MY FRIENDS IS CALLED INFLATION. NOTHING KILLS AN ECONOMY FASTER THAN RAPID INFLATION.

    Note: I’m tired, and that was a long rant, I am not checking it for spelling or grammer, feel free to make fun or me for that, I don’t care.

  54. 61

    T.J. spews:

    Dear Heath;

    I know you mean well, it’s ok. It is not your fault your a Westsider and have no clue that a back-hoe isn’t a hooker that likes it doggy-style.

    Did you know, Agriculture is actually the leading employer in the State of Washington. That’s right, not areospace, not software, not shipping at the Port of Seattle or Tacoma, it’s good old agriculture.

    And another interesting tid-bit. Farmworkers make more money than you might think, it is not just illegal migrant labor. I am willing to bet E. Washington has more millionaires per capita then W. Washington. All that land is worth something, believe it or not.

  55. 62

    headless lucy spews:

    We should tear down infrastructure that was built during the New Deal and end agricultural subsidies. The free market must reign supreme in the land of the Eastern WA Beetheads.

  56. 63

    T.J. spews:

    Also Heath, thank you for making my point on the economic advantage of a tunnel vs. a new viaduct.

    Again, folks in Chewelah don’t care if you stare at unicorns chasing after para-sailing bigfoots all day long out your precious 619 Building window.

    The feds stuck it to us because they could care less about Seattle City Beautification. FUNCTION OVER FORM. Or perhaps you prefer SHOW ME THE MONEY.

  57. 64

    T.J. spews:

    Goldy;

    Riddle me this;

    If the Viaduct is truly on the “verge of collapes” and “hundreds if not thousands will die a tragic death”, why has WSDOT allowed it to remain open??? If this is truly an “emergency” and lives are at stake, it should be closed down. If the problems with the viaduct are being exagerated for political gain, then those people doing so (that would be you) are hurting this state and should be ashamed of themselves.

  58. 65

    chardonnay spews:

    WOW, that was hell of a dramatic post Goldy. I’m still lauging. You forgot to mention Patty Murray terying to STEAL the credit. I heard she was busted by the Sheriff. hehe

  59. 66

    chardonnay spews:

    No Wonder at 24
    exactly. Besides we are still at War, gotta be tight with the budget. I tought it was the dems bitching about the big bad deficit. LOL. We spend to much, no we don’t spend enuffff?
    I just can’t figure out why Maria let Patty take all the credit when it is Cantdowell that is up for re-elction. They are falling all over themselves after the Rove bungle aren’t they?

  60. 67

    chardonnay spews:

    Proud @ 25
    LOL
    your comment are an asset to this site.
    FYI OT
    for a good laugh see the Wenatchee World online for a picture of Crissy hitch hiking. wednesdays fire story.

  61. 68

    Curious George spews:

    T.J. @ 52

    “Chewelah (give you nickle if you know where that is)…”

    North of Spokane, but closer to Colville (HWY 395, I believe). Up therewith Harrington & Bluestem….

    And I’m from NE Oklahoma.

  62. 69

    spews:

    If the Viaduct is truly on the “verge of collapes” and “hundreds if not thousands will die a tragic death”, why has WSDOT allowed it to remain open???

    Answer this… what has WSDOT done with the billions and billions it has already spent and have not accrued for future repairs to the Viaduct.

  63. 71

    thomas spews:

    ooh, ooh…since all the pro’s and pol’s have screwed this place up to the points its at now…I want the rednecks in charge, only place to go is up…:)

  64. 72

    Heath spews:

    Actually, TJ, I come from a farming family. However, they farmed in an area of the country with what is known as “topsoil.”

    Curious George had an interesting point if there really are 15000 sq. miles of unirrigated wheat farming around Moses Lake. That seems like a lot, since that would be 1/4 the state’s entire land area. *shrug*

    As for the 619 building, and what our waterfront looks like — we can tell you don’t care whether that area grows or not. Nevermind that we are talking the city’s farmers market or industrial access to Harbor Island. I know I gave you a lame gimme with ‘the view’, but my point wasn’t the view — my point was I don’t care where Chehoozit is anymore than you care what the 619 building is.

    A _good_ reason to bury the viaduct is so semi tractor-trailors from harbor island don’t have to cross the ferry terminal car traffic on the at-grade streets. This should help you get your cherries, apples, and (apparently) wheat, but let’s not forget wine, to our markets, where we buy them from you.

    And as for millionaires. I know, because my family came from farming, that millionaire farmers tend to have millions of dollars in capitol equipment, not millions of dollars in cash.

    That aside, if you want to get into an ‘illionaire’ waving contest, we have more per-capita billionaires. So, nyah.

  65. 73

    marks spews:

    Um, thomas @69,

    pro’s and pol’s? Hmmm…I have absolutely NO idea what you are talking about…

  66. 74

    NoWonder spews:

    Ben Schiendelman @ 46

    “..every little rural community, relies on an interstate to ship goods to them..’

    I agree to a point. They would not need roads as big or expensive as the interstates. You do not seem to want to admit the obvious – that the majority of the interstate benefit goes to the large cities. On and off-ramp traffic in these small areas is but a fraction of the total.

  67. 75

    Topher spews:

    Brent,

    I reverse commute the Narrows too, and, yes, it will dramatically help traffic. The problem isn’t capacity; why do you think traffic speeds up once you get accross (or at least did until the construction strated). The problem is that the lanes are two narrow and there is danger of ongoing traffic. Get rid of the oncoming traffic and make wider lanes and you speed things up, even if only a few cars use the carpool lanes. On top of that there will be a shoulder so one stalled car will no longer create an instant backup.

    Now, I personally do agree that the funding was handled poorly. I have no problem with tolls, if all new projects are tolls. IE, the viaduct and 520 should be tolls too. So should new highway construction. There is no more fair way to pay for roads and reflect the true cost of driving. But, if nothing else will be tolled, the narrows shouldn’t be either.

  68. 76

    NoWonder spews:

    Roger Rabbit @ 48

    ‘Without I-90, people in Moses Lake would be eating alfalfa for breakfast, lunch, and dinner.’

    With trains and other highways they would be able to still export rabbit feed for the bunnies, as well as the animal waste for distibution at horsesass.org. What about the majority of cities/towns in WA that do not have an interstate nearby?

    Sounds like we have aneed for more data – how much I90 traffic stops along the way for support versus through on their way to other destinations. I thought is was only us on the right that were simplistic.

  69. 77

    NoWonder spews:

    Bobblehead @ 58

    ‘But then I’m making a stereotype and understand that only the uninformed bigots are unable to see that liberalism and conservativism is a spectrum.’

    It was actually meant in jest. I have not really heard liberals fawning over China or North Korea for a long time. The USSR fans kind of went out when the wall went down. The Castro fan club is pretty small, yet does include several “progressives” in Congress.

  70. 78

    spews:

    These donks and there posturing about the state spliting up is hilarious. It is like a bunch of thugs displaying gang signs at little old ladies. If you donks ever want to put an inititiative on the ballot to split the state in two the East will be more than happy to vote for it. Of course they know all the donks on the west would not allow that to happen.

  71. 79

    Heath spews:

    Rufus, we’re sick of our taxes paying for your services. Yeah, I really would vote to get rid of that. If we weren’t subsidizing you, we would have $50M/year more in King County alone. That’s how much we subsidize you with taxes collected here and spent there.

  72. 80

    Heath spews:

    Hey, here’s a peace-making idea:

    Let’s pass a new initiiative. The title:

    “Tax money collected in a Washington State county shall equal money spent in that Washington State county.”

    Barring a disaster declared by the governor in accordance with such laws, no more money shall be spent by government within any Washington State county than was collected there in taxes.

    Do you eastern Washington residents have anything against that idea? If so, what?

  73. 81

    K spews:

    All capital infrastructure has a useful life after which it must be either significantly removated or replaced. Concrete, with the stress of continual loading from traffic and the occassional earthquake weakens. These are facts. (They apply to 520, I-5 and I-90 as well as the viaduct.) What cannot be predicted in when catastrophic failure will occur. We also cannot predict when the next earthquake will be. We need financial policies in this state which will allow for the replacement/major repair of infrastructure. This requires that sometimes we let the money sit and accumulate. Quite difficult- remember the “rainy day” fund.

    All that said, as an avowed liberal and environmentalist, I do not believe a tunnel is affordable. Fix/rebuild the viaduct.

  74. 82

    Heath spews:

    I just realized that Goldy is calling for a boycott:

    If you pass I-912, we are going to stop eating your apples and cherries. I’m down for that. I don’t usually look at the labels, but I could start just for the sake of sticking it to you if you’re going to stick it to us.

  75. 83

    spews:

    Heath

    I don’t live on the East side of the state I live in Edmonds. I just know how these people think. Believe me they would trade the subsidies they get for control over their own land any day. It wouldn’t even be considered a choice.

  76. 85

    marks spews:

    Heath,

    If you pass I-912, we are going to stop eating your apples and cherries.

    Great! You are in all 50 states? Man, what an eater!

    Obviously, I yawn at your plan. Unless you can apply it to all states, it will fail in such a stellar fashion…

    But to your point: You like fresh fruit, right?

  77. 86

    Mark1 spews:

    For some of us it’s also about sending a message to lil Crissy and Co. and all those other douche bags in Olympia that they WILL heed the will of the people. Creating the end run over 1993 voter approved I-601 to get their Seattle project funding is unacceptable and it will not be tolerated. This is 420,000 plus people evident so far. Put a toll booth on the fucking thing and do it that way. And I agreee with all the posts that are informing on the WSDOT’s past track record of fuck-ups and over-spending. Enough is enough.

  78. 88

    klake spews:

    Take that piece of junk down and let them walk to work. Better yet use sound tranit to get to work. Better yet just move next to you job. Not a real problem to solve you got to decide where you want to live and work. DON”T LOOK FOR THE GOVERMENT TO FIX YOUR PROBLEMS! Move to Canada? Russia? China? North Korea? Freemont? you figure it out but don’t ask someone else to pay for it. Get A life.

  79. 89

    Bax spews:

    Creating the end run over 1993 voter approved I-601 to get their Seattle project funding is unacceptable and it will not be tolerated.

    Did you feel the same way back in 1998 when the GOP put R-49 on the ballot? That was their end run around 601 to spend MVET money on roads. Of course, they then endorsed the de-funding of all the R-49 projects a year later with 695.

    Interestingly enough, that’s the sum total of the GOP’s road building efforts in the last 20 years in this state: endorse a package one year, and endorse its destruction the next year.

  80. 90

    T.J. spews:

    Heath @ 70;

    The point is not to start an “illionaire” pissing match. (I like that term by the way and I think I am going to steal it from you)The point is to answer critics that farmers are just a bunch of dumb hick, rednecks.

    If helping by pass the ferry terminal is the best justification for spending a billion (I am willing to bet it is actually 5 billion after all the project over runs, miscalculations, etc…) extra dollars to bury Alaskan Way, I think you can probably understand why the feds did not go for it.

    By the way, I am proud of Curious George. I will leave your nickel with one of the trust worthy citizens of Pioneer Square next time I am in the area. I am sure they will save it for you.

    And I still have not heard a good reason why this disaster in the making (Das Viaduct) is still open for us to drive on.

  81. 91

    Bax spews:

    Brent:

    When the DOT gets their act together and actually builds some roads that serve the greater good (i.e. no HOV lanes, no mass transit, etc), then we can talk raising taxes.

    DOT builds what the legislature tells it to build. Sounds like your problem is with the legislature, not DOT. Of course, given the fact that people overwhelmingly re-elect incumbents, it’s hard to make the argument that they’re that upset with the legislature’s transportation priorities.

    What pisses me off is seeing Hwy 18 and the next round of widening. Why didn’t they just do that 8 years ago?

    Because they didn’t have the money, largely because the GOP led legislature wouldn’t give it to them. Gary Locke was begging for a gas tax increase back in ’98 to fund transportation improvments. Had the GOP led legislature listened then, we’d probably be finishing up most of the projects we’re just getting underway now, and they would’ve been a lot cheaper then they are now. But they didn’t want to raise taxes, so the projects didn’t get done, and now that’s somehow the Democrats’ fault. Then there was the R-49/695 backtrack which wasted another couple years. Oh well.

    These DOT morons seem to enjoy dragging projects out decades rather than being cost effective and doing (gasp) more than 1 lane at a time.

    Like where? Name a project in this state that has been dragged out for decades, and then tell us how it’s DOT’s fault. And remember, be specific.

  82. 92

    Bax spews:

    And I still have not heard a good reason why this disaster in the making (Das Viaduct) is still open for us to drive on.

    Because they’re pretty much holding it together with duct tape and chewing gum, and the last time they shut it down after the earthquake the city basically went into gridlock. Don’t you remember when it took an hour and a half to get from West Seattle to downtown? I do.

    So you think it should be closed? Does the idea of I-5 at a dead stop for 13 hours a day appeal to you?

  83. 93

    spews:

    Interestingly enough, that’s the sum total of the GOP’s road building efforts in the last 20 years in this state: endorse a package one year, and endorse its destruction the next year.

    I agree Bax that the republicans havent done much to help improve transportation is this state. That is the main reason why this state is in so much of a mess. Donks having too much influence in government is always a disaster.

  84. 96

    Heath spews:

    T.J. -

    I don’t think those of you who want to stick it to us in Seattle are a bunch of dumb, hick, farmers.

    I think you are a bunch of reactionaries who have a chip on your shoulder. We support you, and you whine about us.

    Living in a city is cost-effective. That is why it’s possible to spend less on us than we pay in taxes — because we live in a compact area with tight infrastructure.

    Yes, farmers have to live in rural areas, and there is good reason to support them. But there are trade-offs being made, and one of them is distribution of tax moneys from us to you.

    Now, we in Seattle have a serious need. Our viaduct and the 520 bridge are soon going to fall down and sink, respectively. Not only will people die, but our economy will suffer.

    When our economy suffers, your economy suffers. Our excess $50M/year would turn into a deficit of massive amounts should either of these roads fail on us (especially the 520).

    It’s in your best interests to support us at least to a certain extent.

    I have heard people make rational arguments that burying the viaduct is too expensive. You picked a nit with my comment about access to the ferries.

    Why did you neglect my point about access to Harbor Island? In case you don’t know what Harbor Island is, it’s the PORT — you know, where ships full of cargo come and go.

    You should want there to be easier traffic to and from the port. As things stand, road traffic to and from the port is at its limit.

    Another valid reason to put 99 underground is this: then it can’t fall over. Seriously. The area where it’s built is in-filled sawdust and a major liquefaction zone. Surprisingly, putting the 99 below grade makes it more stable in an earthquake that putting it on pilings which are like stilts.

    Someone asked why we still drive on the deathtrap. Well, I don’t. As for why we still allow driving on it: if we didn’t the amount of man-hours wasted would be equivalent to killing more people than if we risk it.

  85. 97

    Thomas spews:

    Marks @ 71

    No problem, my shorthand…..

    pros’s —–professional non-elected goverment types
    pol’s ——career elected goverment types

    typical in this state, neither has held a non-goverment job in their entire career.

  86. 98

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    T.J. @ 52

    I stopped reading your nonsense when you said I-90 was built to make apples and cherries cheaper in Seattle.

  87. 99

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    By the way, T.J., your grammar and spelling make me wonder whether you graduated from a 4-year high school, let alone a 4-year college. If you’re a college graduate then they sure have “dumbed down” our colleges! Where do you go to school? Draft Dodger University? What’s your degree in? Basket weaving?

  88. 100

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    61

    If eastern Washington has more millionaires per capita than western Washington, it’s because of massive federal investments in dams and reclamation projects — paid for largely by urban taxpayers — that make E.W.’s agriculture possible. Without those projects the land would be nearly worthless because it wouldn’t grow anything.

  89. 101

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    67

    “Answer this… what has WSDOT done with the billions and billions it has already spent and have not accrued for future repairs to the Viaduct.”

    Gee — build thousands of miles of roads in the other 38 counties? You are 1 dumb fuck, Rufus.

  90. 103

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    Reply to 74

    “What about the majority of cities/towns in WA that do not have an interstate nearby?”

    This is a bullshit statistic. The number of cities and towns is irrelevant. Most of Washington’s population lives within 10 miles of an interstate. After you subtract Seattle, Tacoma, Bremerton, Everett, Mount Vernon, Bellingham, Olympia, Vancouver, Ellensburg, Yakima, Tri-Cities, Spokane, and all the smaller cities and towns along the I-5, I-90, and I-82 corridors there’s not much left. The only cities of any size NOT on an interstate are Bremerton, Anacortes, Port Angeles, Wenatchee, and Pullman, and these all have major state highways connecting them to the interstates. I doubt the percentage of Washington’s population living more than 10 miles from an interstate is much over 15%. It’s certainly far less than 25%, because over half the state’s population lives in King, Snohomish, and Pierce counties.

  91. 104

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    My bad. Bremerton belongs in the second category. That was an editing mistake, not a geography mistake.

  92. 105

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    75

    Why do you wingers insist on spouting absurd bullshit? Name one congressman who “supports” Castro. ONE! You can’t, because there aren’t any.

  93. 106

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    79

    I agree — go with the cheapest option, which I understand is rebuilding the viaduct. I do NOT support the tunnel concept. It’s just too expensive.

  94. 107

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    81 & 82

    Rufus, I spend a significant amount of time in eastern Washington and have lived there, and they can pretty much do what they fucking want to over there, short of dumping cow shit in salmon spawning streams. So I don’t know what the hell you’re talking about. Eastern Washington’s relationship with Olympia consists mostly of applying for and receiving grant money for everything from sidewalks to police cars.

  95. 108

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    To Cheesy Chuckie and all the others who say, “We’re not against AWV or 520, just leave us out of it,” I reply:

    I’ll be glad to. My preferred financing plan for these projects is (a) don’t raise the gas tax, (b) keep King County gas tax revenue in King County.

    King County currently sends $125 million a year of gas taxes to the other counties (including yours). That money is enough to make the principal and interest payments on bonds to finance these projects. Of course, that means kissing goodbye to the road subsidies you’ve been getting from Seattle drivers for the next 50 years, but that’s your fucking problem.

  96. 109

    Donnageddon spews:

    Ok, so you all don’t like my plan of draining Lake Washington and paving the lake bed over.

    How about we go back to the old city planner ways and just take water cannons to Capitol hill and fill in Elliot Bay? We could put a 16 lane freeway on the new reclaimed land and be done with this transportation problem once and for all!

    In order to do this we will have to raise gas taxes to the $10/gallon mark, but who will care? Maybe eastern Washington, but they will quickly be distracted by another prized sow in heat and get ready to ride her.

    Everyone wins!

  97. 110

    Curious George spews:

    Heath @ 72

    “…if there really are 15000 sq. miles of unirrigated wheat farming around Moses Lake. That seems like a lot, since that would be 1/4 the state’s entire land area…”

    I stand by my guess of the area. Think (if possible) of the area bounded on the north and west by the Columbia River; the east by Idaho; and the south by the Snake River. If that’s not 1/4 of the state, what is?

  98. 111

    Mr. Cynical spews:

    The Alaskan Way Viaduct Tunnel is merely a beautification of the Seattle Waterfront disguised as a transportation “emergency”. The cost overruns WILL be astronomical. If you start the project, you pretty much HAVE to finish it no matter what.

    If it is truly the “emergency” heath and others cry (like the fucking Chicken Little’s they are)….then the AWV should be closed immediately. It’s a lie. The AWV Viaduct is ugly. Tough shit you Seattle LEFTIST PINHEADED Assholes!!

    Funding soluton:
    1) Take the $220 million from the Feds.
    2) The WSDOT kicks in ONLY the cost of necessary REPAIRS…let’s be generous and call it $1 billion (NO MORE).
    3) Seattle Developers and landowners who will benefit from this tunnel are assessed.
    4) Seattle floats a bond issue for the balance and charges tolls to pay for it.

    Seems reasonable…but the LEFTIST PINHEADS want the rest of the state to pay for their “ASTHETICS”. They are so stupid these LEFTIST PINHEADS cannot see Paul Allen and the other big buck white boys are going to profit bigtime….on the backs of an alleged “transportation emergency”.

  99. 112

    NoWonder spews:

    Roger Rabbit @ 105

    ‘Name one congressman who “supports” Castro. ONE!’

    The two most prominant are Charles Rangel and Maxine Waters.

    http://www.free-biscet.org/bis.....isoner.htm

    http://www.amigospais-guaracabuya.org/oaghb026.php

    http://www.babalublog.com/archives/001704.html

    http://www.haciendapub.com/castro9.html
    In Harlem, Castro was cheered and applauded by the roaring crowd yelling, “Fidel, Fidel, Viva Cuba, Viva Cuba!” He was warmly bear-hugged by Rep. Charles Rangel and told by the presiding church minister that he was one of the greatest leaders of the world and that they joined him in opposing the U.S. blockade. Then the noted cleric consecrated Castro: “God bless you,” he said, although Castro is an atheist and Cuba officially is an atheist state where the faithful are persecuted.

    http://www.findarticles.com/p/.....i_65913443

  100. 114

    Bax spews:

    Funding soluton:
    1) Take the $220 million from the Feds.
    2) The WSDOT kicks in ONLY the cost of necessary REPAIRS…let’s be generous and call it $1 billion (NO MORE).
    3) Seattle Developers and landowners who will benefit from this tunnel are assessed.
    4) Seattle floats a bond issue for the balance and charges tolls to pay for it.

    Yet I don’t see you making the same demands for other road projects in less populated areas of the state. Why is your standard different for Seattle than it is for everywhere else?

  101. 115

    Chuck spews:

    Roger Rabbit@102
    You have got to be kidding me, ever since 912 came along it has been nothing but a giant Seattle whine tasting! Would you like some cheese with your whine, Roger Rabbit?

  102. 116

    Chuck spews:

    Roger Rabbit@107
    And you know what? If that grant money wasnt there they would get along fine without it…so, King County, leave the state and do both of us a favor!

  103. 117

    Chuck spews:

    Bax@113
    The second Narrows is another example of pissing money away. The only thing it is going to add is carpool lanes and one lane in each direction AND that isnt why the Narrows bottlenecks, it is the lolygagers. The people that either stare out of facination or lock up out of fear are the bottleneck problem.

  104. 118

    Richard Pope spews:

    Mr. Cynical @ 111

    Excellent analysis. However, the people you call “LEFTIST PINHEADS” and the people you call “big buck white boys” usually tend to be exactly the same folks in today’s political climate in our wonderful state.

    One other excellent idea is the Sierra Club proposal to simply replace the Alaskan Way viaduct with an ordinary surface street. I don’t think that is such a bad idea.

    It would be much more productive to spend some money to widen Interstate 5 to four lanes in each direction through downtown Seattle.

    Roger Rabbit @ 108

    I don’t think King County sends anything near $125 million per year in gasoline tax money to other counties. This would be nearly half the current gas tax collections from King County. Where do you get these numbers from?

  105. 120

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    Dimwits @ 111 & 112

    You’re not being asked to pay gas taxes for a tunnel. The gas tax will raise at most $2 billion for both projects, which is only a down payment — not enough to pay for basic replacement. Any frills will be on local taxpayers’ dime. So kwitcherbellyachen.

  106. 121

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    Cheesy Chuckie @ 115

    Chuckie, from what I see, they can’t get in line fast enough to get their hands on that grant money.

  107. 122

    Richard Pope spews:

    Chuck @ 118

    You are probably right. Much of the pre-695 license tab fees went to non-transportation purposes — such as revenue equalization for poorer areas that didn’t generate much sales tax revenues. Goldy and others were right that I-695 involved poorer rural areas voting against their economic interest, but it carried those areas by a wide margin anyway.

    I-912 should win those poorer, rural areas by a much bigger margin, since most counties will be lucky to get 10 or 20 cents back on the dollar for the new gasoline tax, while King County will be getting nearly two dollars back for every dollar paid locally.

  108. 124

    Richard Pope spews:

    Roger Rabbit @ 122

    That $125 million per year was for only a two year period of time — namely July 1, 2001 to June 30, 2003. And also a projection done in August 2001. King County would pay $921.6 million and receive $667.4 million in benefits for this period — or pay $254.2 million more. That is where you got “$125 million per year” from.

    For the 10 year period of July 1, 1993 to June 30, 2003, King County paid $3,742.6 million and got back $3,198.2 million — a shortfall of $544.4 million. This is only $54.4 million per year averaged over the 10 year period.

    http://www.metrokc.gov/exec/ne.....0years.doc

  109. 125

    Richard Pope spews:

    Roger Rabbit @ 122

    Also, I wouldn’t trust statistics provided by Ron Sims in a press release, especially when there is no source given for the alleged study generating those statistics.

    Nor do the figures contained in the “Ron Sims” study appear to comport with reality. The “Ron Sims” study actually claimed that the state gasoline tax was ONLY “about 12¢ per gallon” during the FY 2002 and FY 2003 time frame. And also claimed this 12 cents per gallon generated $2,689.5 million statewide during these two years.

    In reality, the state gasoline tax was actually 23 CENTS PER GALLON during the time period July 1, 2001 to June 30, 2003. (It was raised to the current 28 cents per gallon sometime later in 2003 by the 2003 legislature.) So RonSims was off by nearly a factor of two on knowing what the state gasoline tax rate is!

    The full 23 cents of gasoline tax generated $727.4 million in FY 2002 and $740.3 million in FY 2003, for a total of $1,467.7 million (just over half of the $2,689.5 million amount estimated in the RonSims study):

    http://dor.wa.gov/Docs/Reports.....Table2.pdf

    Once again, not only was the state gasoline tax nearly double what RonSims thought it was, but RonSims also estimated that the state was receiving nearly double the actual amount of gasoline tax revenues.

    I don’t believe anything RonSims has to say. And neither should you.

  110. 126

    NoWonder spews:

    Roger Rabbit @ 105

    ‘Name one congressman who “supports” Castro. ONE!’

    How about Charles Rangel and Maxine Waters. Tried to submit some links but they have not been accepted. I am not sure how these blog things work with links.

    Charles Rangel – Praises Castro frequently

    Maxine Waters – Not sure how much she like Castro. But she frequently pleads with him to keep that Black Panther who killed a New Jersey cop in exile in Cuba. It may be that she supports the Panthers who murdered cops more than she actually supports Castro.

    There are lots of other outside of Congress as well who sing praise on Castro.

  111. 127

    bf spews:

    Mr. Cynical at 111.

    Absolutely, the developers in Seattle are converting, expanding and building residential condo’s as fast as they can, and those units are selling at an even faster rate than they can build them. The values are increasing at astronomical rates. If the developers would benefit from the tunnel, which they absolutely would, then a mediation fee makes perfect sense.

    That in conjunction with some state funds, the 220 million from the federal government, some tolls, and all the money left over from the monorail debacle, and they could have their pretty little tunnel!

    Goldy…
    Go ahead and close the gate, most of us who do not absolutely have to go to Seattle, Bellevue, Redmond, et al. avoid them at all costs. We just get so jealous, when we see all the really rich liberals parading around in their Eddie Bauer clothes, riding around in their Eddie Bauer Hybrid wheels and looking down on anyone who does not fit their arrogant, angry, snobby little world.

  112. 128

    W. spews:

    Hell, just close the gate. If Eastern Washington thinks they are an island, then let them see what one really is.

  113. 129

    bf spews:

    It is not only Eastern Washington that feels alienated…..
    How many counties did Gregoire actually win, was it two or three? And of those counties, how much actual geographic area did she win?

    You can pretty much guarantee that all of those counties and cities that did not vote “blue” feel alienated! So if you stay out of our “red” areas, we will happily stay out of all your “blue” areas. Of course, you may have a little trouble filling Safeco and Qwest field without us. But we will really appreciate camping and fishing and hunting and logging without you whining about which species of little flowers or spotted owls we displaced.

  114. 130

    Goldy spews:

    Um… gee… you do all realize that I was being somewhat sarcastic, right? That I don’t actually advocate splitting the state or the county in two, that I think strictly spending revenues in the county in which they were raised would be bad public policy? You do all get that in addition to just venting, I was trying to illustrate to you pro-912 folks what your irrational anger and emotion looks like to us on the other side?

    I-912 should be about whether the specific projects the gas tax hike pays for are worth the price… not about whether you’re unhappy that Gregoire won, or pissed off that you are in the minority, or you just don’t like us city folk. It shouldn’t be about what DOT did wrong 15 years ago (they’ve become vastly more efficient in the past decade, completing many projects on time and under budget)… it’s should be about what they are going to do in the future. It shouldn’t be about sending messages, but rather about maintaining our roads and improving unsafe intersections and interchanges.

    That said, I also want to make it clear that we can get angry too, and there’s only so much effort we’re going to put into trying to bridge the “urban-rural divide” when you guys are laughing about the prospect of our actual bridges collapsing during rush hour.

  115. 131

    bf spews:

    Goldy,

    I too was being sarcastic. It has almost reached the point where sarcasm is the only method by which to demonstrate the frustration on both sides of the aisle.

    My comment about the Gregoire counties was essentially to point out to “W” that it is not only eastern Washington that feels hosed by King County.

    I just read an article in the Times regarding the Federal matching funds for the viaduct. I was happy to see that the congress was reasonable, in that they would assist with the cost to fix the viaduct, but that they were not interested in helping to fund a tunnel. The construction of a tunnel would only benefit a few wealthy Seattle developers.

    I don’t live in Seattle, but the conversation begs the question…. If Seattleites were so worried about the Viaduct, why would they fund the multi billion-dollar monorail? Why not spend that money on the Viaduct?

    While I would agree that the transportation department appears to have become more efficient over the last 10 years. (As an aside, I was pretty pissed on my 20 mile drive home yesterday, typically a 45 minute drive, that took two-hours and 45 minutes, all because of road construction – yes during the middle of rush hour on a Friday evening, every single road in University Place, Lakewood and Tacoma were under construction!!!!!) I would also like to note my frustration with the astronomical costs involved with all of the environmental studies. There is a little project in Fife that people have been talking about forever, the State has spent MILLIONS of dollars on environmental studies, and it turns out the project is not even slated to be completed, or designed, or …..

    I am very impressed however with the progress on Highway 16 and the new Narrows Bridge. Any impact on traffic appears to be minimal. I may be wrong, but I believe that project is being completed with the combined effort of both public and private entities. It appears to be the most efficiently run, fastest moving transportation project I have ever seen. It will be interesting to look at when all is done and see if they have stayed within their budget.

    I know that the DOT is obligated to follow the legislative guidelines, and that is likely where any changes need to be made. There is a much more efficient way to build roads, we have to limit the say that special interests have, it is costing our state greatly. In fact, if the Viaduct were to fall on commuters, the blame would really have to lie with the all the environmental, ridiculously expensive red tape, put in place by special interests. Because without that we would have ever so much more money to spend on pretty roads in the lovely Emerald City.

    By the way, I would never laugh about the viaduct collapsing. I was in San Francisco when the Nimitz fell.

  116. 132

    Dan B spews:

    I’ve got to agree with you Goldie, even though I’m rural. One of those “little” projects is even in my county.

    The ignorance of these gomers is apalling. Half of the heavy [truck] traffic in the three counties feeds the hinterlands. Any of you red-state refugees remember that term?

    But one thing, and please, somebody help me here: What the hell is wrong with a couple of hundred tall Texans squashed to goo in a freeway collapse???

    PC be damned. There is no virtue – or Karma – in wishing your enemy well. I’ll wish them in their own hell.

  117. 133

    Richard Pope spews:

    Goldy,

    I don’t think that the people of eastern Washington (or anywhere else for that matter) should be indebted to King County for our (read our elected Port of Seattle commission) decision to subsidize our port by imposing $62.7 million in property taxes on King County property owners. This is about 3% of the average property tax bill in King County, and equivalent to a six cent per gallon local gasoline tax.

    Instead, this is simply a plain stupid policy, which mainly benefits cruise lines and shipping companies. If the Port of Seattle spent less and/or charged higher rates, we would still export our wheat and apples and import our automobiles and clothing. A small amount of this business might shift to other ports (like Everett or Tacoma).

    There is no need to have a port subsidy in order to import or export goods. If international trade is valuable — i.e. our apples and wheat are cheaper than what they can make, and their automobiles and clothing are cheaper than what we can make — it will happen, even if the costs of shipping goods are not subsidized.

    Moreover, it is extremely unfair to have King County property owners subsidize a major portion of the costs of shipping apples, wheat, automobiles and clothing. These costs should be borne 100% by the hundreds of millions of consumers, both here and in other countries, who consume these products, and by the farmers and manufacturers who produce these products.

    The Port of Seattle is one of the few port authorities in North America that actually SUBSIDIZES its operations through general tax revenues. (The next highest port tax subsidy anywhere in North America is Tacoma, at around $10 million per year.) Most are designed to AT LEAST break even. Some (unlike our port) actually pay property taxes to local governments. And many actually make a PROFIT — Los Angeles, for example, returns nearly $100 million per year to city government.

    This $62.7 million per year can certainly be put to better uses. One of them (very popular with conservatives) would be to let homeowners simply keep this tax money in their own pockets. Another of them (popular with traditional liberals, as opposed to vin et fromage nouveau liberals) would be the various local social service programs which are chronically underfunded and need this money much more than cruise lines, shipping companies, manufacturers, etc.

    However, if we took this $62.7 million per year in property taxes (which will grow each year as property values go up, if the levy rate is not reduced), it would generate $2 billion in current dollars over the next 30 years. This happens to be the same amount that other counties will be subsidizing King County with the 9.5 cent gasoline tax — King County pays $2 billion, but gets $4 billion in project money.

    So we could impose the 9.5 cents gasoline tax rate only in King County, stop subsidizing the Port of Seattle, and achieve the same money for King County road projects as would the current 9.5 cent statewide gasoline tax.

    And the projects outside of King County could be funded with probably only one or two cents per gallon (at most) of additional gasoline tax. (There are a lot of fee increases in the transportation package which will not be repealed by I-912, which would cover most of the projects outside of King County.)

  118. 134

    Curious George spews:

    Richard @ 133

    “…this $62.7 million per year in property taxes (which will grow each year as property values go up, if the levy rate is not reduced)…”

    That looks good on paper, but wasn’t there an initiative a year or 2 ago that limited levy growth to 1% per year – without a vote of the people?

    Notice I said “levy growth” not levy rate growth. The levy is the amount of revenue generated by the tax.

  119. 135

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    133

    Richard, George is right. Current law automatically adjusts levy rates downward as assessments rise. That’s why I’m paying only $20 a year more property tax than I did 4 years ago, even though my house has appreciated 50% in that time.

  120. 136

    Richard Pope spews:

    CG @ 134 RR @ 135

    I thought exactly the same thing when they increased the tax collection by over 50% in November 2002 for the 2003 calendar year — i.e. isn’t there a 1% limit?

    Whichever initiative that adopted the 1% limit still allowed governments to imposed “banked” taxes. It used to be that governments could increase total tax collections by 6% per year before that, and then something greater than 1% but less than 6% before the initiative was approved.

    The Port of Seattle left tax collections at $35.6 million per year from 1992 to 2001, so they banked quite a bit of taxing authority. At the present time, the Port could impose a $75.8 million property tax for 2005 — without a vote of the people.

    http://www.portseattle.org/dow.....vy2005.pdf

    (Keep in mind this document is prepared by Port of Seattle staff, and contains all sorts of rationalizations for imposing a property tax levy, instead of making the port self-sufficient or even profit-making.)

    I am predicting, at current Port spending and subsidy rates, that there will be an increase for 2007 up to the maximum allowable tax (without voter approval), which would be $75.8 million plus 1% for 2005 and 1% for 2006, plus the value of new construction.

    Unless, of course, there is a significant change in the political makeup of the Port of Seattle Commission.

  121. 137

    Curious George spews:

    Richard @ 136

    A point well taken… I forgot about “banked” levy capacity – along with new construction and state assessed property value increases. (It’s been a year or so since I dabbled in property tax in such detail.) But the increases that were imposed after the passage I-747 were an aberation and can’t continue at the same rate. After all of the banked capacity is imposed, the rate of revenue increase will be limited to 1% per year.

    I suppose that generates $2 billion over 30 years (current dollars), but… what about inflation over the same time frame? The last time that I checked, the governmental expenditure IPD was increasing at a rate of 2.5% to 3.0% per year. That’s still 2 to 3 times greater rate of expense growth than the rate of allowed revenue growth.

  122. 138

    Richard Pope spews:

    CG @ 137

    Probably I am making too many assumptions. If the Port of Seattle Commission actually had the wisdom and backbone to eliminate the property tax subsidy, this property tax levy would likely be completely eliminated. I don’t think the Port would use the money to finance road construction instead.

    With either (1) a new law authorizing additional local tax levy, or (2) perhaps a vote of the people to increase the King County property tax levy collection, this same $62.7 million could then be available for other purposes, such as road construction.

    As for the 1% limit, I don’t see it lasting too far into the future. I-747 will probably be amended by the legislature in the next few years to allow property tax collections to increase by the rate of inflation, even if that is more than 1% — perhaps subject to a 2/3 requirement of the local governing body (which usually is not a problem).

    On the other hand, the vast majority of the levy lid increase votes since the adoption of I-747 have been approved by the voters. If they think government is wisely spending their money, they will vote for a reasonable tax increase.

    It is just too bad that the Port of Seattle has been able to increase property taxes by 76% in the last four years without the people being able to vote on it. And they could be increased by another 37% (measured by the $35.6 million charged in 2001) without the people voting on that either.

    If the people had been required to vote on these, it is extremely unlikely they would have passed. And if we could have a vote on totally eliminating this tax, I think that would pass as well.

  123. 139

    Curious George spews:

    Richard @ 138

    “….If the people had been required to vote on these, [banked levy increases] it is extremely unlikely they would have passed….”

    I agree 100%. Pierce county tried a levy “lid lift” last September by saying, “We’re not going to increase your property tax levy (rate).” (The propsition failed)

    You’ve got some interesting ideas. Perhaps we should take this discussion private. It doesn’t seem as contentious as most threads on Goldy’s blog. :)

    If you’re serious about legislative change, I might have a name or two that you may find helpful.

    Curious George: wsac2@netscape.net

  124. 140

    Goldy Loves Terror spews:

    Well, if it does pancake, let’s just hope your on it at the time. At least then you would have been right for once.

    A whole lot of whining that illustrates your progressive mindset. It’s not enough that your getting entitlement. You want more. More from the Nanny State.

    Worrying about the Viaduct should be no greater and if fact far less than worrying about being in a car accident or any of the many other daily dangers that have far greater odds.

    Sensationalism sells, and given how much you’ve been spewing lately Goldy, posting reasoned arguments must not have worked to well for you.

  125. 141

    cfang spews:

    reply to #57

    Ok, TJ, interesting plan.

    Its your job to sell it to the voters.

    Good luck trying to get anything passed that requires tax to be charged.

    Oh, they will vote to cut their taxes, but not the other way around.

  126. 142

    Bax spews:

    So now we should repeal the gas tax because the Port of Seattle levies a property tax? This is getting awful tenuous. This is illustrative of the problem with government by initiative — everybody believes that their own pet idea is the one that government should do in response to their vote, and everyone ends up getting disappointed and more pissed off when their own pet idea isn’t implemented.

  127. 143

    Mr. Cynical spews:

    Using Banked Capacity is a TAX INCREASE!!!
    Property Taxes need to stay at a 1% increase. PERIOD!

  128. 144

    T.J. spews:

    I know this is a few days late so I doubt anyone will see it.

    Roger Rabbit: If you will notice at the end of my post, I mentioned it was late, a long day, and I was not checking my grammer or spelling. So your ability read is now in question.

    And FYI on your Draft Dogger U. comment. Since the draft ended 5 years before I was born, that would have been difficult for me. Also, if you would like a copy of my Honorable Discharge, DD-214, Honorable Discharge for my year recalled for Operation Enduring Freedom, 3 Navy Achievement Medals, Navy Accommodation Medal, or any other of the various awards I earned while serving in the Middle East, let me know. I will mail them to you. I will also send a copy of my Assoc. in Forensic Tech., Assoc. in Criminal Justice, Bach. in Workforce Ed & Dev., or my Master’s in International Relations (when it is complete in another 6 months). But yup, I’m just another dumb friggin hick redneck, huh. I love you so-called educated elites.

    Now back to Heath – who for the record, I find to be a curtious and respectful debated. I appreciate your lack of name calling, insulting, or degrading of people you disagree with. Maybe we all (myself included at times) could learn something from you. Sincerely, I thank you.

    I however @ 96, I personally (not all republicans though) don’t disagree that Hwy 99 & 520 need work. I do disagree with raising gas a dime and budgeting billions of dollars (a) with out a plan, (b) when other, more cost effective ideas are on the table, (c) we have not begun to audit the process to see where money could be saved and (d)we have not begun to discuss how we are going to fund transit for the next 50 years (because obviously gas taxes are not going to do it). We are just asking for another $2 billion dollar project that ends up running $11 billion.

    On the Harbor Island issue and as it relates to the port; R.I.P. Port of Seattle. Tacoma is already out growing Seattle 10 fold. With a Alaskan Tunnel (and the beautiful water front park that will follow- which I would like to visit, honestly) The port is not going to be developing. If Mayor Greg plans on making That area into a commercial/recreational park, the last thing anyone wants to look at are more cranes and Group 3 merchants. Tacoma is the fasting growing port in the Western Hemisphere. Already, half a dozen companies a year leave Seattle for Tacoma. I don’t see the trent changing anytime soon.

  129. 145

    k2 spews:

    TJ,
    Where I agree with your sentiments and am impressed with your myriad of degrees, I have to agree with RR. Your spelling errors, mutilation of the english language and persistent misuse of homonyms undermines your intellectual credibilty.
    Just a note.