The right man for the job

Peter Goldmark is running for Commissioner of Public Lands.

He’s a rancher, a farmer, a geneticist, and through much of his life has served the public. He served as agriculture commissioner under Gov. Mike Lowry, and on the Okanagon school board. He was a regent at Washington State University, and founded a group that helps farmers and environmentalists to work together.. He invented a species of wheat used by his neighboring farmers, and raises (what I’m told) some damn tasty grass fed beef. But to really get to know the guy, you have to know the back story:

Goldmark’s father, John, was a popular farmer and state senator in the 1950s who championed public power only to be viciously slandered as a Communist tool by a former Spokesman-Review political editor and a former legislator who had both sided with private power companies. In this fearful time of the Red Scare, John Goldmark was turned out of office and saw his life ruined.

He sued for libel in 1963 and won a huge victory against his accusers. But the stigma and whispers of “communist” played out tragically in 1985 when, on Christmas Eve, a drifter who hung around right-wing fringe groups, murdered Charles Goldmark, his wife and two children — thinking he was John Goldmark.

The savage attacks on his parents (Peter Goldmark was 17 at the time of the libel trial) and the later murder of his brother’s family may have shaped Peter Goldmark and his views of public service and politics.

If anyone has earned the chance to retire to the front porch and stay out of the public eye, it’s Peter Goldmark.

But I don’t think that wouldn’t sit right with him. That’s why he’s running for Lands Commissioner this year:

[W]e agree that we need new and better management of our state’s public forests, our shorelines, our aquatic reserves and our mineral resources. [We] agree that without sustainable management of these natural resources, we risk losing what is so special about our state. We can and must do better—it is time for a change.

I’ve spent most of my life raising wheat and cattle in the high country of Okanogan County. I have served as Director of Agriculture for the state, bred new wheat varieties and been named conservation farmer of Washington State. I will be the first Lands Commissioner to be a conservation award winning and committed manager of our lands.

I offer a new direction and positive leadership.


  1. 1

    correctnotright spews:

    The story of the murder of Charles Goldmark (Peter’s brother) and his family should be required reading for right wingers in Washington state – hate talk can kill innocent people.

  2. 2

    Malcolm Muggeridge spews:

    Yes, at the time of the libel award, it was one of the largest judgments against a ‘newspaper’ at the time. That was the mentality of Okanogan, one of the most GOP counties in the country–if they can’t own it, kill it.

  3. 3

    YLB spews:

    a drifter who hung around right-wing fringe groups, murdered Charles Goldmark, his wife and two children — thinking he was John Goldmark.

    This mentality is more common on the right wing. A lot of right wingers have these murderous thoughts towards people who refuse to drink their kool-aid.

    Thankfully, only a handful act on these murder fantasies.

    Most settle for hate-speech which is constitutionally protected and doesn’t land you in jail.

  4. 4

    ByeByeGOP spews:

    This is why I advocate that Democrats carry legally-registered firearms. Let some right wing nutjob come after me and I’ll introduce him to my friends Smith & Wesson.

  5. 5

    I-Burn spews:

    @3 This mentality is more common on the right wing. A lot of right wingers have these murderous thoughts towards people who refuse to drink their kool-aid.

    You have evidence of this? Or just a “feeling” that it’s true? Because if you think your side of the great ideological divide doesn’t have at least as many nutcases, you’re sadly deluding yourself.

    You want to see “hate speech”? I’d challenge you to walk down the main street in the U-District, carrying a sign supporting Republicans. Guaranteed, you’ll get a quick education on the “tolerance” of the left wing.

  6. 6

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    @1 Do you think they care? It’s likely some of them applauded. I met Chuck Goldmark in 1985 in his capacity as Gary Hart’s campaign manager in Washington State. Of course, that by itself would be enough to prompt hatred from the right. Had a delusional paranoiac not murdered him, they would be gleefully vilifying Chuck to this day.

  7. 9

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    Goldmark’s opponent is the usual underqualified Republican lacking relevant experience. Doug Sutherland isn’t exactly what you’d call an expert in either science or public lands management: He owned tent and awning company.

  8. 10

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    Republicans complaining about hate speech is like Ted Bundy bitching about his neighborhood’s high murder rate. How’s that castor oil feel sliding down your blowhole, assholes? You fuckers started it, but we’re going to finish it.

  9. 11

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    I made $300 in the stock market today before getting out of bed, and I’ve made another $134 while posting on HA. According to my calculations, that works out to $54.25 an hour for an 8-hour work day, without doing any work or producing anything, and the taxes as 1/3rd as much. Capitalism, ya gotta love it! I gotta give credit to Republicans for one thing, they know a good racket when they see it!

  10. 12

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    And these fools think I’m stupid enough to be a commie? Little do they know … I’m laughing all the way to my neighborhood capitalist bank! Oh, and one more thing — if they need some work done, they’d better do it themselves, because I’m sure not gonna do their work for them!


  11. 15

    ArtFart spews:

    12 “I’m laughing all the way to my neighborhood capitalist bank!”

    Enjoy it while you can, until they padlock the doors.

  12. 16

    headless lucy spews:

    re 5: Yes, Mr. Burn. Now it all makes sense. Getting yelled at for carrying a sign is the same as an entire family being executed.

    Name one instance (besides the McKinley assassination) where a conservative was murdered by a liberal for their political views.

  13. 17

    ByeByeGOP spews:

    Thank you for pointing out Lucy what would be obvious to anyone who has an IQ that equals their shoe size. Obviously iBurn isn’t even that smart.

  14. 18

    ByeByeGOP spews:

    @10 Thanks Roger for reminding everyone who started it and for proclaiming the proper solution – which is for our side to finish it. Stop bending over for the republicans. They have no power. Bitch slap em, leave em to the side of the rode and move on. Time to govern from the Constitution – not the business plan of the right.

  15. 19

    BigGlen spews:

    Thank-you for the nice post about Peter Goldmark. Now to fill in a few missing pieces. Yes, the beef does taste nice from his ranch, been there ate that. And for those of you that want to know more about the libel case read: the Goldmark Case by Will Dwyer. It tells the whole story about the lies, dirty tricks and back room rumors that would make Karl Rove proud.
    And one of the defendants in that case would go on to form a group known as the Duck Club (a right wing nut case group). The loser that killed Charles Goldmark and family was a member of the club. (They tried to say that they had kicked him out before the murders but there was no record of that). And after the loser killed the family he had called the leaders of the duck club to tell them what he had done. (He called at least 3 members, only two call police).

  16. 20

    David Aquarius spews:

    Yep, big Seattle-Tacoma ‘subsidizes’ Okanogan Co. However, they sure enjoy the apples, the beef, the recreation like hunting, fishing, hiking, etc. The good people of Conconully, Omak, Tonasket, Riverside, Brewster, Monse, and a dozen other little towns in Okanogan say thanks for the roads every day at work.

    These are good people who seem to think that the GOP will care about their needs, their hopes and their hard work. All they get is wingnut speechifying, a truck load of fear and despair and ridicule from the likes of this guy.

    Enjoy your gold, hope you choke on it.

  17. 23

    dutch spews:

    Hannah, Hannah, you really need to start reading HA for entertainment purposes only. It’s quite funny to see the comments. And believing anything RR says…should be a no no. Especially his “income”. Just an example from yesterday
    Roger Rabbit says:
    I made $200 in the stock market today. I made $125 while taking a shit, another $50 while wiping my ass, and another $25 while picking my nose and occasionally hitting the F5 key on my computer keyboard to update my portfolio screen.
    As you can see, earning capital gains requires special skills and therefore deserves favored tax treatment.
    04/08/2008 at 8:48 pm

    but a few hours earlier…he said:


    Roger Rabbit says:
    @2 Oh, I’m doing all right with NOV and NE … I made $500 in the stock market this morning while taking a shit. It just amazes me how little respect our society has for honest work, and how much it worships a screwy economic ideology. I’m not against it, you understand, it’s just that the disrepect for, and devaluation of, work seems self-destructive to me. At some point, a lot of people will decide to hell with it and stay home and flip stocks instead of commuting to a real job, and then nothing will get done and nothing will be produced and the economy will go to zero.
    04/08/2008 at 11:09 am
    in reallity…well…:-)

  18. 24

    Hannah spews:

    Dutch, I do read this site for entertainment purposes and for insight (facts with data to support them). Thanks for pointing out the indisrepancies (sp?) there! I need to find another blog site with a more neutral base. Between the republicans at work and the democrats here…is there any in between? I’d like to see some qualities of both parties in our government!

    Besides there are how many true HA regulars? Maybe 15. Do you know of any other more neutral debate blog sites?

  19. 25

    I-Burn spews:

    @8 How very clever, Roger. Did you think of that all by yourself? Nice to see the level of discourse to which you are capable. Of course, given that you were a lawyer, I suppose I shouldn’t expect anything more intelligent. If you were capable of such, you’d have had a real career, afterall!

  20. 26


    Goldmark is a really neat guy. I supported him when he ran for the 5th CD seat against Cathy McMorris, and I’m happy to support him again for this office.

    We need more Peter Goldmarks in this world.

  21. 28

    I-Burn spews:

    @16 Getting yelled out is about the least you could expect, and I hope you know it. Would you be killed? Probably not. Would you be threatened, assaulted, battered, abused, and possibly savagely beaten? Pretty goddamned likely.

    Name one instance (besides the McKinley assassination) where a conservative was murdered by a liberal for their political views.

    How about every time some illegal commits a crime? Y’all are certainly culpable since you’re the ones preventing the implementation of any kind of a solution.

    Actually, claiming the action of some disturbed individual was in reality a political assassination makes about much sense.

    The fact of the matter is that historically, leftists tend to murder on an industrial scale, rather than an individual. I’m sure you know the examples just as well as I do. Fortunately, the incidence of either side resorting to assassination has been fairly rare in the United States. Hopefully it’ll remain so.

  22. 29

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    @14 Market’s closed now and I made only $130 today, but that still works out to $16.25 an hour (based on an 8-hour day) without doing any work, and I have no commuting expense, no bosses hassling me, no snotty co-workers or hostile customers to deal with, no office politics, and I didn’t do any work or produce anything. The best part is the government rewards me for adding no value whatsoever to the economy by giving me a 66% discount on my taxes! =:-D

    And, tomorrow is another day …

  23. 30

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    @15 “Enjoy it while you can, until they padlock the doors.”

    Well yeah, there’s that problem, but you know the big capitalists are always going to steal back whatever you took from them, anyway. Easy come, easy go. Bank failures are merely part of a broader conspiracy to chain us all to desks and assembly lines.

  24. 31

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    Liberals not only must arm, they should also become shareholders! What we need to do is wrest control of corporations away from the rightwing fatcats! When we control the boards of directors, the first thing we’ll do is institute reasonable CEO compensation policies. I have no problem with paying a CEO $90 an hour, let him keep the company car, and give him the same medical benefits the workers get as long as he’s making a 20% annual return for the shareholders. That sounds fair to me. If he doesn’t like that deal, then I can find work for him on the chicken processing line.

  25. 32

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    @22 You don’t have to infiltrate this blog. We welcome trolls with open arms! One more wingnut ass to kick around the block.

  26. 33

    Ekim spews:

    @28 I-Burn the Idiot speaks again. Lots of noise. No facts. No wonder the reich wing is going down in flames.

  27. 34

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    @23 I wouldn’t fib about something like that. I don’t have to, because the actual facts work just fine for me. Of course, it goes without saying that I don’t give a rat’s ass whether you believe me.

  28. 35

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    I mean, if I were going to tell a lie, I probably wouldn’t do it by telling people I’m picking my nose when I’m not.

  29. 36

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    @23, Part 2 – The $500 was the previous day.

    dutch, if you’ve somehow gotten the impression I win the stock market every day, let me disabuse you of that false belief right now. Nobody can do that. There are up days and down days. My oil stocks are going up this week ahead of earnings reports which are bound to be robust. NOV is one of the world’s leading rig builders, and NE is one of the world’s leading rig lessors. Three supergiant oilields have just been discovered offshore from Brazil, and it takes a billion-dollar deepwater platform to reach that oil. I own stock in the companies that build and rent out those platforms, and their prices just went up and their order backlogs just got fatter and we’re looking at year-over-year earnings increases in the 30% to 50% range when they report over the next few weeks. It’s not my fault you’re stuck in a $2.13 an hour job where the boss keeps the tips — you should’ve gone stock hunting instead of job hunting, and you should’ve voted for Cantwell instead of McGavick. The mistakes guys like you always make is you think, for some inexplicable reason, that if you suck up to Republicans they’ll pay you what they get paid. It don’t work that way, pardner. To them, you’re just cheap labor like the rest of us.

  30. 37

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    @24 “Between the republicans at work and the democrats here…is there any in between?”

    Someone (I forget who) once said that a person who won’t take sides is a person with no principles, or something like that.

  31. 39

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    @25 “How very clever, Roger.”

    Not really. I’m just a reporter. I merely write about what I observe.

  32. 40

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    @25 “Of course, given that you were a lawyer, I suppose I shouldn’t expect anything more intelligent.”

    Hmmm, you’re not COMPLETELY dumb after all, although you certainly do a fine imitation of a brain-dead regard. But given your apparent grasp of the true nature of the law, maybe there’s a ray of hope for you after all.

  33. 42

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    @26 He’s a VERY neat guy. Peter Goldmark exemplifies what is right with this world, and with this state, and what good people are capable of. Contrast that with what we get from the right and it should be no contest, ever. Unfortunately, when Ma Nature bolted together human beings, some of the screws got lost, so we have people who hate knowledge and intellect simply because they don’t have any. And, under our democratic system, they get to vote. I wouldn’t change that, but I hope the Rapture gets here before the election.

  34. 43

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    @28 I agree you’re at substantial risk of being threatened, assaulted, battered, abused, and possibly savagely beaten anytime you venture into the U District, but not because of any political views. All they want is your cash and credit cards.

  35. 44

    YLB spews:

    Guaranteed, you’ll get a quick education on the “tolerance” of the left wing.

    You’d get some dirty looks but that’s about it. How often do you get over there? Probably not very often.

    You’re such an angry guy I-Burn. What’s eating you? Just go to any right wing blog and it’s nothing but “moonbat” this, “marxist” that.

    Just go to (un)SP. Extremely intolerant place. Any contrary view is eventually greeted with the epithet of “idiot”, “moonbat”, “leftist”. If you get into it with the regulars eventually someone calls for a banning.

  36. 45

    I-Burn spews:

    @33 I give just as many facts as I get. Can you claim the same? If you were interested in anything more than opinion, you sure as hell wouldn’t be trolling for it here, now would you. And whether you like it or not, my opinion is worth just as much as yours. Too bad, eh?

  37. 46

    I-Burn spews:

    @44 YLB, you really don’t get it, do you? I’m not angry, this is entertainment. I do read right and left wing blogs, every day. And no matter how much you deny it, or wish otherwise, they’re mirror images! Anywhere you go, there’s a RR, or a BBG, etc… The only difference is where they come from.

  38. 47

    ByeByeGOP spews:

    Well hopefully the next time a “leftist” decides to murder – iBurn will be close by.

    What utter bullshit. From a guy who claims to use FACTS – all I see is shit.

  39. 48

    slingshot spews:

    @38 It’s even in the Bible, RrrrRabbit.

    I know thy works, that thou art neither cold nor hot: I would thou wert cold or hot. So then because thou art lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will spue thee out of my mouth.

  40. 49

    dutch spews:

    RR at 36: Roger, Roger…now now…tsk tsk tsk…I would have expected better :-)

    on 4/8 at 11:09 AM you wrote you made 500 bucks this morning, then on 4/8 at 8:48 PM you wrote you made 200…
    now unless you live in a different time zone (which is entirely possible giving your view points), to me that is the same day :-)…So please, use a more intelligent excuse than “That was the previous day”. At least Goldy then retorts with…”this was satire”…:-)

  41. 50

    dutch spews:

    Hannah, you are looking for a more neutral discussion base ? Hmmm, unfortunately, there aren’t any real good ones I know of. HA certainly isn’t neutral or has much insight/meaningful discussions. There are a few I would certainly sit down with and discuss things with, people who keep an open mind, even though they are on one side or the other. John Barelli one and Piper Scott on the other are the two coming to mind. The rest of the HA regular posters are more or less spouting off …or have no other live like our friend RR :-)

    Unfortuantely, as you might have realized, neither John, nor Piper have been posting for quite some time. Especially when people like John get blasted and insulted by people of his own side because of different opinons…

    There are some other blogs with a more “cordial” visitor base, but quite often you find the nutcases on either side posting behind the veil of being annonymous. The garbage and foul language you find here and at other places speaks for itself.
    So it’s back to entertainment :-)

  42. 51

    ewp spews:

    The Democratic Party needs to do a better job of recruiting people like Mr. Goldmark to run for public office. People who walk the walk are much more effective than the “activists” who like to tell everyone else how to do their job, but lack actual experience. It’s that old adage, actions speak louder than words. There are a lot of progressives working in all fields, but too often they get labeled as right wingers, facists, etc. by the “activists” because they work instead of talk all day. Mr. Goldmark has a great story and seems like someone who will have credibility across party lines because he’s lived his values instead of just flapped his gums about them.

  43. 52

    Hannah spews:


    Funny you bring up Barelli, he is one of the very few I have been able to talk politics and campaigning with. he was the only one who pointed me in the right direction to do phone campaigning for Obama. Thanks! Glad I’m not the only one who sees the entertainment value. Plus I like reading the links provided by most here as they are great news sources.

  44. 53

    correctnotright spews:

    @52:And the quality of republican candidates is so great in the state of Washington?

    Gee- We have three republican reps in stateide national offices, no governor and no Senators:

    Doc Hastings: the king of ethics violations and ignoring the page scandal – not to mention illegal and unethical contacts to screw over republican USAA John McCay.

    Cathy McMorris (wingnut from the Eastside) – who thinks plan B causes abortions (wrong) and global warming doesn’t exist (just plain stupid).

    Dave Reichert: soon to be defeated ex-sheriff hwo couldn’t catch the Green River killer that was right under his nose – and his boss said he “impeded” the investigation.

    Gee – and those are the “winning” candidates – what a bunch of losers.

    Dino (whines alot) Rossi – the candidate for governor – in the pocket of the BIAW wingnuts.

    The no taxes, support the deficit and the war platform is working soooo well – you think people can’t see through the borrow, spend and make endless war policy that will bankrupt our kids?

    13 billion/month (minimum) for Iraq – what a great investment in chaos. Not to mention the countless lives lost – priceless….

  45. 55

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    @45 “And whether you like it or not, my opinion is worth just as much as yours.”

    Not really.

  46. 56

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    @55 Wingnut opinions are deeply discounted these days. For example, Coulter can’t even give away her books.

  47. 57

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    @48 Thank God I got myself right with the Great Mother Rabbit Spirit in case I get run over by an SUV or something.

  48. 58

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    @49 “on 4/8 at 11:09 AM you wrote you made 500 bucks this morning, then on 4/8 at 8:48 PM you wrote you made 200…”

    So? My gain yesterday dropped by $300 between 11:09 AM and the close. What’s your point?

  49. 59

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    @50 “Hannah, you are looking for a more neutral discussion base ? Hmmm, unfortunately, there aren’t any real good ones I know of.”

    Sure there are. The MSM media. You know, the news sources righties refuse to read because objectivity offends them.

  50. 60

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    Why aren’t the righty trolls who said Burner should stay home with her baby calling for McMorris to resign from Congress and stay home with her baby? Fucking hypocrites.

  51. 61

    YLB spews:

    46 – Not mirror images at all. A right wing blog on a good day is much more unhinged than a left of center blog on its worst day.

    Roger Rabbit is happily eccentric in his retirement. Just as I hope to be when I retire. He brings a tremendous amount of wisdom and experience to the table. He’s our conscience here.

    You right wingers attack him because he knows the right inside out. He calls it as he sees it and what “it” is, is pretty ugly.

  52. 62

    harley 'wrapped in the bloody flag' fouref spews:

    re 46: With a moniker like’I-Burn’, you can hardly call yourself the soul of sweet reason. You only come here to provoke, you have nothing meaningful or constructive to contribute.

    To combine some public words of wisdom from your own side of the aisle: “Go fuck yourself! …you fucking cunt!”

  53. 63



    A somewhat more polite, although still rather liberal forum is over at WashBlog, although it is more of a post and comment forum, rather than an open discussion.

    I haven’t been posting as much because my business has been keeping me busy, and adding in evenings phone banking, caucuses and the upcoming county convention, I just haven’t had either the time or inclination to put up with Mr. Esser’s minion.

    After working hard to actually help Democrats get elected and trying to bring more folks into the party, it gets frustrating reading Mr. Minion’s posts where he’s trying to get people to think that we’re all a bunch of angry, bitter losers.

    Closer to the topic of this thread, Mr. Goldmark is running in one of those races that get very little attention from most folks, but will probably get a lot of attention from our “friends” over at BIAW.

    I’m glad that Will is bringing this to our attention, and hope that he and Goldy will keep a close eye on this race.

    Apparently Mr. Sutherland considers anyone within the environmental movement to be an “extremist”, at least according to his website:


    Extremists Are Gearing Up Again Against Doug

    The Seattle P-I recently noted that Doug’s re-election “has become a hot topic among environmental leaders who are watching at least three prominent Democrats who say they are seriously considering taking on Sutherland.”

    (Gotta watch those extreme Sierra Club types, after all.)

    Something tells me that Mr. Sutherland will have very little difficulty raising the money for his campaign.

  54. 64

    FricknFrack spews:

    Thanks Will! Nice uplifting YouTube for Peter Goldmark.

    Even before seeing that, though, from everything I’ve read of him already Goldmark’s got MY vote. Will be talking to friends and neighbors. It would be fantastic to see an educated, land EXPERIENCED, and knowledgeable person in the position. After seeing Bush & Bush-lites raping the environment, we need a person that can offer reason for both sides of the Public Land issues.

    Need to rattle my piggy bank to see if there’s anything I can produce to help his efforts.

  55. 65

    I-Burn spews:

    @62 You only come here to provoke, you have nothing meaningful or constructive to contribute.

    Said alias number 5,347 of whom? I understand that most of you would rather have a tame little circle-jerk here, obviously including yourself. That’s alright, you go right on ahead….