Morning Fizz

"It's Not a Pretty Sight."

By Morning Fizz November 4, 2010

1. With a strong (record-setting) turnout in King County, U.S. Sen. Patty Murray pulls even further ahead of Dino Rossi statewide—50.84 to 49.16, a margin of 27,464 votes. (She led on election night 50.5 to 49.5, or by 14,000 votes.)

Murray is now beating Rossi in King County 62.4 to 37.27, better than her initial showing in King County, 61.82 to 37.84, after the second King County batch itself on Wednesday was going Murray's way 66.88 percent. Enthusiasm gap?

I-1100, the Costco-backed liquor privatization initiative, has officially tanked after yesterday's count. Full results on all the measures here. The rundown is: Tim Eyman's two-thirds legislative majority rule for tax increases wins; workers' comp privatization loses; the second liquor privatization measure, 1105, goes down; the soda, candy, and bottled water tax repeal wins; and R-52, the green retrofit of schools loses.

Also: U.S. Rep. Rick Larsen (D-2) pulls ahead of Republican opponent John Koster, 50.13 to 49.87 and state Supreme Court Justice Richard Sanders inches slightly further ahead of challenger Charlie Wiggins 51 to 49.

And in one other piece of election news you may have missed: State Rep. Dawn Morrell (D-25, Puyallup) has pulled ahead of girl scout hating Hans Zeiger, 50.02 to 49.98. Out of 39,478 votes, Morrell, the Democratic house caucus chair, leads by 16.

And while all eyes have been focused on elections, things have been getting a little crazy at city hall: Serious ethics violations, peace summits, dog shit, and Satanists!

2. At yesterday's Seattle Ethics and Elections Commission meeting, commissioners declined to pursue criminal charges against a former permit specialist with the Department of Planning and Development, agreeing with commission director Wayne Barnett that firing was sufficient punishment for his ethics violations.

According to commission records, the permit specialist was simultaneously drafting permit plans for private businesses (including a bar that paid him $1,300 to design its outdoor seating area) while approving those plans for DPD---a clear violation of city ethics law.

3. City council member Mike O'Brien, the council's leftiest environmentalist, is the keynote speaker at tonight's meeting of the Seattle Builders Council, the local branch of the (decidedly not-left-leaning) Master Builders' Association.

According to the invitation, which features an image of deer and bunnies in the forest (environmentalists) and guys in hard hats (builders) under the slogan "COMMON GROUND," O'Brien lives "with his wife, two sons, and chickens in Fremont."

O'Brien, who was invited into the lion's den by the master builders themselves, will talk about carbon neutrality, urban tree regulations, and housing issues.

4. After an audit found that dog shit cleanup in dog parks costs the city more than $150,000 a year, city council member Tom Rasmussen says he may propose charging dog owners and professional dog walkers a fee to use city dog parks.

"It's not a pretty sight," Rasmussen says. When PubliCola pointed out that his suggestion would appall the former occupant of his office, dog lover and dog park advocate Jan Drago, Rasmussen chuckled, "I expected to see the lights flickering and the walls shaking, but I don't."

5. James Keblas, the current director of the Mayor's Office of Film and Music, has been tapped as interim director of the city's Office of Arts and Cultural Affairs---prompting some to speculate that Mayor Mike McGinn plans to merge the two offices, an idea that has long been controversial among both filmmakers and the city's arts community.

Not so, says mayoral spokesman Aaron Pickus: Keblas will continue to head both offices, while a seven-member committee chooses a replacement for former OACA head Michael Killoren, who is heading to Washington to work for the National Endowment for the Arts.

6. Another reason to oppose funding public-access television? In a 20-plus-page letter to city council members, a woman who opposes funding Seattle Community Access Network (SCAN) TV with city dollars laid out a unique case against the public-access network.

The short version: SCAN is being run by Satanists and CIA "disinformation agents." The letter, replete with references to the Masons, the Illuminati, the Rothchilds, UFOs, and the New World Order, reads like a field guide to conspiracy theories.

We're guessing that if the council agrees to cut SCAN's funding (they're talking about putting the contract currently held by the public access channel out to bid), they too will  be implicated in the Satanist plot.
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