Saturday, May 30, 2015

Have a Great Weakened!

Alright then...It's the first weekend after the big holiday Memorial Day weekend, so let's do a little compare and contrast, shall we? Thanks so much to Tyler, who sent in the photos below. He took them downtown, last weekend, in the Center Of It All. There were millions of people on the move last weekend, and we all know the City of Port Angeles has spent millions (and counting) on their dynamic new waterfront esplanade and Nathan's Artificial Buzzsaw Beach. So does it look like those millions ever came together? From the "action" in these photos, they look like they might as well have been taken at midnight, not high noon.
Plenty of seating available. No waiting!
At least the street signs were out and about...
Weeds, yes; people, no.
Expended: A million dollars and no sense.
Ah ha! At last! (Or is it at least?) The Memorial Day crowds!
So...If that was last weekend, a holiday weekend, with the JFFA in full swing, what does it look like this weekend downtown? Does it look like the enlightened leadership in City Hall has found the secret to success? Does it seem like the new, improved PADA is firing on all cylinders? Or, to put it in terms that the morons in charge there might (might) be able to understand, do these look like pictures of The Best Town Ever?
(Thanks again to Tyler for fighting the crowds to get these pictures.) 

Sunday, May 24, 2015

A Candid Date

What follows is a cut and paste of a back and forth Q&A session with Port Angeles City Council candidate Marolee Smith. In the comments section below, I will first copy the question I sent to her, and then, as comments below each of those, cut and paste the responses Marolee sent in. Yours comments and questions will, I hope, follow those.

Thanks to Marolee for participating. And, one more time, let me extend an invitation to all you other candidates out there. This blog is a forum to talk directly to several hundred voters in Port Angeles and Clallam County. (The readership of this blog is certainly more than the margin of victory - or defeat - in many recent elections. That's something to think about candidates...)

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

One Dan Down...

You'll be getting rid of Dan DiGuilio this year. That will be an undeniable plus. But that will still leave Dan Morrison running "amuck" in the community, Dan Williams talking trams, and Dan Maguire making bad, bad, bad musical associations for the JFFA.
Oh, and it will also leave Dan McKeen in place as City Manager.
But should he be the next Dan to go? We know that City staff are a problem, and that the City Council can't hire or fire staff members themselves - except for the City Manager. So does it make sense to make that one (very important) position that is directly under the Council's control a campaign issue this year? As in, "I will only support candidates who pledge to hire a new City Manager, one who will be proactive in dealing with painfully obvious staff issues?"

Is it true that Nice Guys help their cities
finish last?

Let's be blunt: This will put City Council candidates, including unopposed incumbents like Sissi, in an uncomfortable position. No one wants to be "mean" to Dan McKeen, right? Like the previously described dopey dawdling droner Pat Downie, everyone seems to agree that McKeen is "a nice guy."
But is that enough to shield him from any and all criticism? Do candidates get spared an "uncomfortable" question, even though the many uncomfortable residents of Port Angeles get no such relief? Should Dan McKeen get a free pass, even though city residents are expected to pay full price?

Friday, May 15, 2015

Sorting the Crooks from the Nuts

Well, alright then...Here's what we have to work with. Filing is closed, and people have signed up. Some have been discussed here previously (like Shan Pak), and some have been mentioned here previously (like kooky Connie Beauvais), and some I have never, ever heard anything about.

So, while I sort out my information, and do my own sleuthing, feel free to pitch in with whatever you might know. Below I'll start some individual discussions for various people and positions...

Thursday, May 14, 2015

Deadline or Dead End? (UPDATED!)

As we approach the deadline for filing to run for office - just two days left - there certainly doesn't seem to be a rush to throw the bums out. So far there are mostly incumbents filing for re-election, and few contested races. Sound familiar?

So, some obvious questions arise...Is anyone here planning on running for office? Though there is clearly a desire to replace the existing order, does anyone believe that a few new elected officials here and there will be game-changers? In other words, will a complaining population turn out to be a compliant population in the end? If so, is that realism, cynicism, or defeatism? How complicit are the voters in Port Angeles and Clallam County in their own dissatisfaction?

More specific questions I have include...Does anyone think that Shan Pak is going to get a free (and unopposed) ride to the City Council? Does Sissi Bruch merit re-election to that same body? Does Lee Whetham merit such a quick promotion? Does Cherie Kidd deserve anything other than shaming, shunning, and permanent banishment? Will the Democrats actually field an opponent for Dim King Jim?

And what do you think that the entrenched and (for lack of a better word) evil staff members at various governing entities think of all this? Are they worried? Anticipating change? Laughing at the thought of "change"?

Just two days to go, folks...
Ladies and gentlemen, we have a theme! Sort of!
Yes, in addition to looking like the Year of Uncontested Port Angeles City Council Races, Part II, it is also starting to look like the Year of the Longhairs. Yes, indeed. We already had ponytailed Shan Pak running for the Port Angeles City Council, and now Mark Ozias, executive director of the Sequim Food Bank, is running (as a Democrat) against Dim King Jim for County Commissioner. See photo of Mr. Ozias below, and expect to see said picture lots more during the campaign. Also be prepared to hear lots of hippie/longhair jokes from the local right-wingers.
But ha ha ha, the joke's on them. I don't know Mr. Ozias, but he doesn't look like someone who is ready to play hard, fast and dirty enough to beat Dim King Jim, who loves the art of attack and smear. But we'll see...

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Mike Chapman: The Buck Stops Here! (Before We Give It Away Willy-Nilly)

Arrogance is never attractive in a person.
It's even less attractive in an elected official, being that they're supposed to be "public servants" and all that.
So the latest spat over the Clallam County Commissioners sudden deep desire to give money away and make their once proud surplus a thing of the past is very interesting. Let's look at what has been reported, and some of the quotes from a couple of key players...
Clallam County commissioners today are expected to award nearly $1.3 million in infrastructure grants despite objections from the elected treasurer. The three commissioners agreed May 4th to give $1 million dollars to the Port of Port Angeles for the development of a proposed composites recycling center, and $285,952 to the City of Port Angeles for the second phase of the ongoing waterfront improvement project.
Commissioners plan to use Opportunity Fund money that was originally budgeted for the delayed Carlsborg sewer project to fund the grants.
County Treasurer Selinda Barkhuis said county policy and state law requires a public hearing to appropriate the funds for the grants. In addition, the county should have written contacts with the Port and the City to ensure that the money is spent appropriately, she added.
In a Thursday email to Board Chairman Jim McEntire, Barkhuis said there is “nothing in the adopted budget for the Opportunity Fund that anticipated making any grants to outside entities. This is why the budget needs to be amended, subject to a public hearing, as reflected in the county’s policies, before these grants can be funded,” Barkhuis wrote.
“I’m not willing to modify a process and overturn years, if not decades, of history in how we approach modifying the budget as opposed to newly authorized appropriations that are the result of an unanticipated emergency,” King Jim McEntire said.
Commissioner Mike Chapman, the dean of the board, took umbrage with the notion that the county has violated its own policy and state law in making budget modifications. “We have to be really careful when we start interjecting that the board’s not allowed to do things that have been done for 15 years,” Chapman said. That would mean former board members and former prosecutors and former administrators have violated the law. That just strains the bounds of logic that the board would have been allowed to do things illegally all these years. Now all of a sudden, somebody wiser, smarter who’s better than everybody else who’s worked here says, ‘No, it’s illegal to do this?’”
“The advisory committee made a recommendation. The board is going to vote in public tomorrow. It’s a done deal.”
So what do YOU think? Is it possible, even probable, that "former board members and former prosecutors and former administrators" have violated the law? Did you notice how Chapman used a semantic dodge by saying "former," as opposed to "current"? Do you think it "strains the bounds of logic" that there might have been things done illegally in the County Courthouse "all these years"? Oh, and how about the crazy, crazy notion of having contracts with the City and Port to ensure the money is spent properly? Ya think?

And how about that big finish from Mike Chapman, that sit down and shut up to another elected official, and a finger to the face of the tax-paying public: "It's a done deal." Yes, Mike, we know it is. Just like so many, many other deals have been "done" for "all these years." You know, if you're feeling a little defensive, Mike, maybe it's because, deep down, you know you've done wrong, and are doing wrong, but apparently you just can't control yourself.

Saturday, May 9, 2015

NEW Journalism for Olde Port Angeles, a City that obviously doesn't "understand" that it's all about the CLICK CLICK CLICK

Let me string a few things together here, in the style of the NEW Internet "Journalism"...Let's start with a piece of a comment posted right here on Unearthed...

"Seriously, though, we're in trouble. Not having water is a REALLY, REALLY, REALLY big deal."

It's Port Angeles vs Bainbridge Island after PA beats Santa Barbara, Calif., in opening of Best Town Ever online contest

By Arwyn Rice
Peninsula Daily News

The voting for Port Angeles was promoted heavily by members of the Revitalize Port Angeles Facebook page. The Revitalize Facebook page was peppered with congratulations Friday night::

WE WON!!! by only 28 votes, whew," "There's no stoppin'' us now!!!," "Yay for the underdogs!," "That was intense, Bainbridge is going down," "Woooo! Whooo!"

One woman wrote: "My students were voting on every computer at school, on their phones.... Good job, teens! [?][?] I say we need to be organized about the next round. Game plan??"

Another posted comment: "Whew! That was exciting!! Thank you Revitalize Port Angeles! On to the next brackett!"

Meanwhile, back in reality...The neighboring headlines from the PDN were:

Blyn man arrested for investigation of arson at Sellin’ Style dealership, which was linked to meth ring

Record-low snowpack prompts dire expectations for North Olympic Peninsula water supplies

The above headline, as dire and important as it is, only got one comment, from deep thinker Jared Dickson:
Warmer and drier than normal. I'll take that.
Meanwhile, on Planet Ripley...
It's another Saturday and I imagine all you local readers are all awaiting with baited breath on what I have to say all of the local goings on! Let's start with this poll which the PDN was running on Thursday, and by the look of things majority of those who voted favored the oil rig fleet to winter here. But, we don't know the final result of the poll because the PDN took it down and replaced it with another poll result instead of posting the final result of the poll they had up! Guess they didn't like how the tide was going in favor of having the oil rigs docked here they just made that poll disappear! But, luckily yours truly got the numbers before they took it down and you can see the following results: 
PDN POLL Question 5.7.15: Since Seattle appears not to want to host the Polar Pioneer and other Shell Oil rigs for winters, should Port Angeles invite them to winter in the harbor?
yes: 73.2%
no: 22.5%
Undecided: 4.3%
Number of votes cast: 768 as of Thursday when published.
(As you can see majority of this town including yours truly is thankful in having the extra revenue from the visiting oil rig fleet. I would go far as saying if I were sitting on the city council, or Port Commission I would be on the horn with Shell oil negotiating with them to winter their rigs here, because it's quite clear by the tones of some area newspapers like in Seattle and Everett that they are less than welcome. That comes when you allow leftist environmental groups who often act like spoiled brats, have their way in begrudging others for whatever is their cause. Maybe these folks be better off traveling back in time and try their hand living in the late 1800's I doubt they would make it, because back then those people would treat them like kooks! Leftist usually tries to pin the blame of criminal activities such as drug abuse, or whatever the hot topic of the day on big business or whatever to put forth their agenda. Yours truly was in attendance at the last city council meeting when a young woman, who admitted to be benefiting from the Shell oil rig being here because she works at a local tavern. But, this didn't stop her from dishing out her leftist rant of trying to pin the blame of the increase of heroin addictions on big business, and drilling for oil! I was shaking my head with disbelief what I was hearing. She apparently assumes that Shell oil pays no taxes! Because she was asking the council to tax them if they stay! One media outlet in town was buying this liberal drivel, I wasn't because I saw this pony act before many times when liberals wanting their way would use something like Heroin addictions as an excuse to blame it on big oil companies! In essence what she was doing blaming the presents of an oil rig for the increase of Heroin addiction in town. In reality the Heroin addictions were around long before any oil rig came into town! After she gave her little speech however, Council members said nothing, and only one person in the audience of perhaps around 50 applauded, that pretty much said a lot on how the majority of folks in this town sees the value of these oil rigs being in town don't you think?  )
Open letter to city attorney & city council
"At city council this past Tuesday night a young 20-something year old lady came to the podium during public response and made an impassioned plea about Heroin use and other dismal facts concerning young people in Port Angeles. She ended her remarks with something akin to, “give us some hope” and “don’t sell us out.”---Dale Wilson, PORT O CALL
( Perhaps Wilson didn't notice that the majority of the audience attending the meeting along with yours truly didn't buy what this girl was trying to do, pin the blame on Heroian addictions on big companies, and oil rigs! Companies like Shell oil, and others which is needed badly here in this town, companies which keeps the taverns open so she can stay employed)
But, after wading through all that stupid and all those distractions and all the modern internet meme and buzz BS, let's end right where we started...

"Seriously, though, we're in trouble. Not having water is a REALLY, REALLY, REALLY big deal."
"Seriously, though, we're in trouble. Not having water is a REALLY, REALLY, REALLY big deal."

"Seriously, though, we're in trouble. Not having water is a REALLY, REALLY, REALLY big deal."
Best Town EVER? Anyone?


Thursday, May 7, 2015

Riddle Me This...

...How do you keep Cherie Kidd up and at her computer all night?
First of all, no, she's probably not up all night looking at online porn. (Probably.) No, all you have to do to keep birdbrain Cherie up all night is announce a new BEST TOWN EVER contest online, and boy, she'll stay up all night, clicking and voting away because, well, it's another great day in Port Angeles! Yes, a great day all night long!
Never mind, as has been pointed out already, that Port Angeles didn't actually meet the (very loose) criteria for the contest, and got in as a mild wild card. Never mind, as has been pointed out, that there is no prize, other than extremely dubious "bragging rights." Never mind, as has been pointed out, that this is such an obvious shill for driving web traffic (like Cherie's eterna-clicks) to a website to jack up their numbers, and thus, their ad rates.

We put the "con" in contest!
No, never mind ALL of that, because the leaders in Port Angeles can now say they're running a City that might be the BEST TOWN NEVER. Oh, oops! I mean EVER. Gosh, this is important! Drop everything and
Yes, from the mountains (of debt and garbage) to the seashore (where you can see the Turd Tank and the previously mentioned garbage), clearly Port Angeles is ever so great, ever so fine, ever so perfect, and ever so close to being...THE BEST TOWN EVER.
I began this with a riddle, so let's end with a modified version of an old joke. You know, it's the one about a cemetery being so popular people are dying to get in it. Well, Port Angeles is such the BEST TOWN EVER that people are jumping off bridges to get out of it. In fact, it's such the BEST TOWN EVER that unusually large numbers of people are doing drugs to escape it. That persistently high unemployment rate? Those people aren't looking for jobs; they don't want to work and pay their bills. No, they just want to have the luxury of simply living in Port Angeles, because it is the BEST TOWN EVER.
BEST TOWN EVER? Sure...If you've never been to another town.
A photo from the future...Proud Port Angeles
residents celebrate living in the BEST TOWN EVER!

Tuesday, May 5, 2015

Outrageous Stupidity Only Encourages Even MORE Outrageous Stupidity

Incredible! And not in a good way, either. Or should I say ways...
Clallam County, aka Drunken Sailor County, has committed $1,000,000 to the Port's highly, highly suspect composites recycling center. "Nothing ventured, nothing gained," slurred sloshed King Jim McEntire. "We've got to take prudent, intelligent risks and manage them."
King Jim apparently forgets that, as mighty as he currently is, he does not, in fact, have the ability to manage Port projects and/or property. He also clearly forgets, as he always does, that he is not, in fact, prudent and/or intelligent.
Continuing with their drunken spending spree, the County has also committed to giving the City $285,952 for their pretty-but-pointless waterfront improvement project. (Or, the Primo Construction employment project if you like...) Now having fallen off the wagon and gone off his meds, former fiscal conservative Mike Chapman said of the waterfront project: "This is definitely drawing people to the waterfront."
Yeah, sure, Mike. Maybe because a few hardy souls want to watch the streets being paved with gold bought with their tax dollars. But look at the conditions of the streets and roads they have to take to get down to the waterfront. Look at the lack of greenery and amenities and anything else that would make the City of Port Angeles really worth looking at more than once. Oh, but oops! I forgot. Everything looks great with beer goggles on.
So the County is spending your tax dollars and their own reserves with abandon. As in, abandon all hope ye who enter here.
Meanwhile, across town, land rapist and all around thug Dan Morrison is going to be fined the paltry sum of $14,000 for intentionally and knowingly destroying nearly an acre and a half of wetlands. The fine started up at $177,000, and has been whittled down to this pittance.
What lessons can we learn from this? Well, for one, the rule of law in Clallam County is weak, so weak. It is apparently better to ask for forgiveness (and a tiny fine) rather than permission. This also allows you to laugh in the face of authority, something a goon like Morrison undoubtedly enjoys. Finally, it's better to spend big on stupid than it is to penalize someone for breaking the law.
If, like me, you think that this fine is a slap in the face to pretty much everything decent, please do feel free to contact EPA Enforcement Coordinator Chan Pongkhamsing directly at Perhaps you will join me in telling him that the only thing he is "coordinating" is Dan Morrison's continued disregard for the environment and the law.

Dan Morrison: Land Rapist, Lawbreaker
and All Around Idiot

Sunday, May 3, 2015

Can't We All Get Along?

Score another one for the astute and informed (and mildly psychic) readers of this blog. The very thing I was going to put up as a topic today - the bickering and infighting between Clallam County's titans of "economic development" - has already been commented on here. Those comments go thus:

" other news (and by news I mean the same thing we always get) EDC bigwig Bill Greenwood is objecting to the composite recycling site. Okay, fair enough, doesn't hurt to look at these things objectively. But what's he mostly worried about? Using public funds to startup a business. Really? The EDC recently had their own hand out for some Opportunity Fund money, while they publicly recommended investing in the slowly-dwindling, not-producing-jobs timber industry.

But it's his alternatives that crack me up. The EDC is spending good money to put up an official from a hotel company who MAY want to build here, and an official who MAY want to train bush pilots. Say what you will about the recycling center, at least there appears to be a plan in place. Do either of these "officials" have anything more substantial than a memo scrawled on a hotel napkin? Or are these like all the other empty promises we get fed year after year?

Honestly, this sounds like simple infighting between the Port and the EDC on which gets known as the bringer of JOBS! JOBS! JOBS! We may ever be seeing the beginnings of a good ol' Clallam tantrum. We'll see if it reaches Madsen levels. That was epic to watch, in a dysfunctional sort of way."

This is an interesting development, given the collusion that is usually going on in Clallam County between all the crooks in charge of things. It's also hot on the heels of the Port stabbing inside goon Lee Whetham's campaign in the back with their Lincoln Park pronouncement.

"There are a multitude of risks associated with this project," said Greenwood in an email sent to Clallam County Commissioners on Wednesday. "I firmly believe that no venture investor or normal investor would give consideration to (the composites recycling center) in its present state."

His comments came under harsh criticism from proponents who say the proposal would generate growth and create jobs.

Meanwhile, Jim McEntire is supportive of spending the money, even if the composites recycling center goes belly up, because it still leaves the Port with an "asset that's usable by the Port no matter what happens." Translation: If we don't build something then none of us get our graft.

So the County props up the EDC, whose director is now undercutting the Port, to the consternation of the County Commissioners, and on and on. Lee Whetham does the dirty work needed to get on the City Council, where he's being positioned for bigger and better things, only to have his budding campaign for Port Commissioner spiked by the Port's airport manager. This makes all the infighting with the PADA, and between the PADA and the City, look like a group hug.

What gives? I thought all you crooks and conmen were singing from the same songbook? So why the bickering, sniping and general discord? Could it be that you're all in dire financial straits? Could it be that you're all seeing the grant gravy train leaving the station? Could it be that there are fewer suckers to fleece, and fewer State and Federal dollars in circulation? Could it be that, instead of circling your wagons, you're all watching out for your own wagon, and the hell with everyone else?

In other words, now that these snakes and sharks have fed off of the public all they can, could it be they're starting to feed on each other?