Morning Fizz: "I've Given You Homework."
Caffeinated News & Gossip featuring: the gray pot market, Hanauer's hire, and a council homework assignment.
1. File this one under cleaning up the legislature's mess: The Seattle city council voted yesterday to extend the time that medical marijuana dispensaries can operate, possibly until January 2016.
Last year the legislature failed—to the dismay of legit medical marijuana patients and to the dismay of neighbors who are pretty convinced that shops with green cross symbols are clunky fronts for pedestrian pot sales—to integrate the medical pot business into the 502 landscape of recreational marijuana sales.
The legislature's failure both threw the lives of bona fide medical marijuana users into a risky limbo and exacerbated a gray market that threatens to undermine the new regulated recreational market.
"You can't have three systems."
"You can't have three systems," council member Tim Burgess said yesterday referring to the 502 system (the voter-approved recreational market), the medical system, and a black market.
The legislature left the city with lousy choices.
By extending the timeline that the green cross stores can operate, the city is justly covering the butts of medical businesses that are caught in the legislature's incompetance, but the move also keeps the gray market in play.
2. Local left-wing billionaire Nick Hanauer has hired local left-wing blogger David Goldstein to do writing, research, and analysis. Hanauer, a TED-Talk liberal who has been leading the national charge to address income inequality and who pushes pet initiatives (currently 594, the gun control measure, previously a winning charter school initiative), already has former Bill Clinton speech writer Eric Liu in his intellectual arsenal.
Goldstein (aka Goldy) tells Fizz he'll be working on income equality and gun control for Hanauer and says Hanauer will have no say over Horses Ass, Goldy's longtime blogging home. (Goldy did a stint at the Stranger and their Slog blog before apparently getting fired in a blaze of glory over disagreements about his minimum wage and ridesharing coverage.)
Goldy says: "To be clear, Nick is not paying me to blog at HA, and has zero say over what I will or won’t write there. I retain total editorial freedom at HA, even to the point of criticizing portions of his agenda with which I disagree."
In making his "sell out" announcement yesterday on HA, Goldy wrote: "Nick is totally deluded about charter schools, so it’s not even worth the two of us having that conversation."
3. Our coverage of yesterday's council vote on Indigenous Peoples' Day is here, but one Native American who—as many did—began his remarks in his native language, stole the show by pointing to the image of Chief Sealth that adorns council chambers behind the dias and asked how many council members knew how to speak his language.
After an uncomfortable silence, he noted: "Not one. That is the language of this land. I challenge each of you. I've given you homework. Go and learn the language of this land."