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?



  1. In Port Angeles, the REAL contest is who can be the most stupid, most uninformed, in a public forum. Sure, Peter Ripley is an easy target, I grant you...But he gets real competition from the Chamber, from the City Council, from regular citizens (Hi, Jared Dickson!) and, of course, from the PDN, for their shallow and unquestioning coverage of it all.

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

    1. That a teacher would have her students waste their time to vote in this stupid, stupid contest is insane. Port Angeles schools and students struggle enough as is. Those kids need EVERY MINUTE spent trying to cram some actual knowledge into their heads. The last thing they need is another online distraction.

  2. You missed the "I TOLD YOU SO" rant from Steve Mazz about removing the Elwha dams on the previous version of the snowpack story, still available to read here:

    No snowpack is going to be the new normal. Seattle is will be fine this year because they have a lot of reservoir capacity. We need to start planning reservoirs NOW. There are a number of creeks and valleys running through Port Angeles that could work. Where is the city or county staff on this? They love these huge construction projects.

    1. No snow pack, coupled with the city council's no brain pack, coupled with the PDN's no spine pack...equals a shit pack of hurt for all of us. Soon.

  3. Seeing what passes for informed comment at all levels in this community, it is no wonder nothing ever moves forward.

    At the government level, they are talking as if it is business as usual. Was watching TVW last night ( which airs Washington State legislative matters, and related programs) . They had a panel of people involved in habitat restoration efforts around Puget Sound. Storm water run off, climate change impacts and land use issues were talked about.

    Now, I understand that restoration is big business in the area. Many millions are handed out to various groups via grants every year to survey, monitor , write reports and hold public meetings. Some actually do on-the-ground work.

    Coincidentally, I was subjected to a telephone survey on this very subject earlier today. The poor girl had to listen to me qualify my answers with responses like :" Yes, I support the intent of restoration efforts, but I think it is too late."

    As the PUD announcement this week highlights, Morse Creek is expected to be reduced to extremely low water levels " by spring and summer". By late summer it will be dry, along with hundreds of tributaries throughout the state.

    The Elwha and Dungeness are already low, the first week of May. And as posted elsewhere, the studies say this is the way things are going to be, and worse.

    So, with no snow pack as a regular event, and drying up streams, creeks and rivers the "new normal", what is going to become of all the habitat restoration efforts?

    All this information is readily available, and local decision makers have been told of these problems over and over. But nothing gets done. They pat themselves on the back, and tell each other what a great job they are doing.

    As was seen at the last city council meeting, the council members clearly didn't understand what they were voting on.

    They fawned all over the Revitalize group, as if they are doing anything of substance. Getting people in Port Angeles to vote THEMSELVES the "Best Town Ever" does little to change things here. It might have been more impressive if people who DID NOT live in Port Angeles, voted Port Angeles the "Best Town Ever".

    Next we'll see the City Council voting itself the "Best City Council, Ever".

    And Revitalize will be voting itself "The Best Business Improvement Group, Ever".

    And the PDN will vote itself "The Best Newspaper, Ever".

    By the end of this summer, it will be interesting to see what residents will be saying.

    1. Your post is wonderful, right on target. Thank you so much. You said it better than I could have ever hoped to.

      "As was seen at the last city council meeting, the council members clearly didn't understand what they were voting on." Not that it ever stops them from proceeding with the vote.

      "By the end of this summer, it will be interesting to see what residents will be saying." But will there be anyone saying they're sick to death of this and going to run for City Council BEFORE the end of summer? We need to clear the deadwood OUT.

    2. Hope both of you are running for office.

  4. Look out Japan! Here comes Cherie and Dan. I guess Cherie has gotten tired of kissing Nippon's ass on American soil, so she has to fly to their country to do it some more there. God, it's SO embarrassing having her "represent" the city. What a laughing stock.

    1. Cheri is embarrassing. I hope she didn't wear her southern hooker outfit.

  5. Headline in daily paper untrue--refused to correct it

    Clallam County to be a composite waste dump for the foreseeable future.

    Another multimillion dollar clean up just around the corner--this time it will be a pile of carbon fiber and filler no one wants.

    “Half-truths are the most cowardly of lies.”---Mark Twain

    On Sunday, May 3rd, a front page headline in the PDN reads, “$2 million composites grant ok’d.” This in bold faced, one inch, above the fold letters. This is a lie. The grant is not approved and there is presently no guarantee it will be approved. In fact, the letter from the Department of Commerce plainly states in its own bold and underlined sentence in the first paragraph, “does not guarantee final approval of legally bind EDA to make an award.”

    The damage is done. This false headline stampeded the county commission to fork over one million dollars the very next day. Soon our hapless governor forked over another three/quarters of a million for the composite recycling program.

    All of this without a feasibility study, without a plan in place for where the raw material will come from, how it will be recycled, either a heat process or a solvent process, and without any ready market for this recycled substance.

    Port O Call reached out to the publisher of the daily and asked how they squared the misleading headline with the reality in the letter. Their response, “we told them the port had to give more information to the feds.”

    I fear a more sinister hand at work here. It was about a year ago when the daily paper put forth a story that the Federal Aviation Administration was all set to hand over to the port a check for $4 or 5 million as soon as those pesky trees at Lincoln Park are cut down.

    Turns out there was never any offer like that. In fact the FAA has no problem with the trees in Lincoln Park. They even suggested to put lights on the tallest ones at night and even they would not need to come down.
    The FAA did offer to reimburse some of the costs but did not request such actions on their own. The FAA does not require any trees to be cut at Lincoln Park. Perhaps the port wants to take over the park land too. With all the trees cut no one is going to be much interested in visiting a cut-over moonscape.

    Why is the daily paper repeatedly reporting false stories. The cost to the public is the county commission, armed with false information, stampeded to raid the Opportunity Fund and give the Port of Port Angeles $1,000,000 to finish out an unfinished port building ostensibly for the upcoming composites recycling project.

    Even the governor's office has been brought in on the plan offering up even more tax money for what Bill Greenwood, executive director of the Clallam County Economic Development Council calls "a risky investment."

    More on the composites recycling project in the June print edition.

    1. I don't trust the governor one bit. He is too slick by half, and seems to have the integrity of a used car salesman. Our local state reps are no better, having been very involved in all manner of money grabs and political sabotage. Point being, there's a lot of rot here, to be sure, but there's also a lot spread throughout the whole state system. We are in trouble, and not just on a local level.

    2. Thanks for looking into these issues, and showing us, in black-and-white how the PDN is obviously complicit in creating the problems residents find themselves in.

      You ask " Why is the daily paper repeatedly reporting false stories". You answer your own question. It is all about money.

      As we saw with the suicide fence issue recently, Lee Whetham doggedly brought the issue back before the council until he got the vote he was looking for. Why was he so dedicated to this issue? He says because staff had told the council that Clallam County had the Stats' highest suicide rates. In fact, Clallam ranks about 6th in the State.

      By "stampeding" the public and decision makers with contrived information, information intentionally manipulated and mis-stated to create pre-determined impressions and conclusions, these people attempt to get decision makers to approve projects and proposals they desire.

      The Composites Recycling project being promoted currently is yet another example.

      As with other projects, the local representatives convince State representatives that what is proposed is such a great whiz-bang idea. The folks at the State level are dealing daily with, well, issues pouring in from hundreds of communities all over the State. They absolve themselves of any real responsibility by saying they are responding to the pleas from their constituents. Until the projects show success. THEN, the cameras come out, and the self congratulatory speeches are recorded for future election campaigns.

      It could be generous to say, as we witness at most meetings of local government, that these intentionally manipulated decision makers just don't understand what is going on, and what they are actually voting on. Unfortunately, we see that these also folks engage in the lies, manipulations and deceptions, as well.

      Getting rid of them isn't the sole answer, but it sure is a great start!

  6. Dear CK,

    Something must have attracted you to PA to entice you to come here. Somewhere along the way things turned sour for you and you moved. Good for you and best of luck. Now get over it.

    1. This comment has been removed by the author.

    2. Dear Anon 1:06

      Only you know what you see and think about what is going on in Port Angeles.First impressions, perhaps incorrect, is that you feel everything is fine, and the only real problem is that people say unflattering and less than positive things about Port Angeles.

      Perhaps you noticed that this isn't the only place this happens.

      Perhaps you noticed the story about the young woman that, after helping an unfortunate soul who was overdosing on heroin in the streets of Port Angeles, went to the City asking for help for the City's youth, and was ignored. You think she should should also shut up, and "get over it"?

      Perhaps you liked it the way it used to be, when the PDN had control over what the community conversations were about, and only the approved topics, said the right way, were allowed?

      Perhaps you're a member of Revitalize Port Angeles, where only positive comments about Port Angeles are allowed. Yes, I get it. Talking about our school children using and overdosing on heroin isn't a positive reflection of Port Angeles, so Revitalize Port Angeles leadership will just ignore that reality. That's how they think Port Angeles will over come it's problems. Don't allow people to talk about them.

      Well, unfortunately, that isn't the way the real world works. That woman told the council that the youth in Port Angeles have no hope about their future. Not talking about the problems, or even acknowledging the children's pleas for HELP, doesn't solve problems.

      "Get over it"?? Nope. Not a chance.

    3. (FYI: I deleted my reply, because I think this reader says it a lot better than I did.)

    4. Weak?

      Riiiggghttt. Real credible.

  7. Dear 3:37,

    I hope you and all the others with ample time to devote to this forum devote at least as much time and effort to a real task that improves your situation, neighborhood or community.

    1. Well, I just wish that, say, our City Council and our local newspaper would devote as much time to governing and informing as they do to shilling for this stupid contest - a contest intended solely to drive up website traffic for the magazine in question. It's a "competition" without a purpose, and will result in a "winner" without a prize. I resent the time and energy being wasted on this, when so many other pressing issues could use that attention.

    2. Hmm, so the validity of 3:37's observations depend on the amount of community service he or she performs? This is called an ad hominem attack. Please try again.

      (Rest assured that I spend plenty of my free time volunteering in the community.)

    3. Dear Anon 6:52,

      Thank you. As you might deduce from reading the comments posted on this forum, the people writing are very well informed about the goings on in Port Angeles. You can see by the detail that these people obviously are very involved in their communities. How else would they know what transpired at City Council, Board of County Commissioners, City Council and other community affairs? Certainly not from reading the PDN.

      Making the required effort to inform yourself of what the real problems are in a community goes a long way to ensuring your success when taking action to address them.

      Wasting time telling yourself how wonderful you are, and trying to convince yourself you live in "The Best Town Ever" accomplishes absolutely nothing.

      Yesterday, driving through town a couple times for various errands, I saw the sidewalks as empty as they were the day before. And, as empty as the day before that.

    4. anon 6:52 -- Smug much?
      That is a very snarky comment. It is not only insulting (and no, I am NOT 3:37), but it is naive. You are assuming there is no purpose to posting on a forum with information and ideas, even if they don't dovetail to yours, to inspire conversation and a sense of community. This forum DOES improve our neighborhood and community, and it IS a "real task". Too bad you only want to deride an open forum.
      This IS the problem with this area. Closed mined bigots. Xenophobic that believe that we all must march to the same tune (chosen by you, I suppose).
      I applaud 3:37.

    5. Anon 9:50, when you drove through town a few times while doing your errands, did you stop and support any of your neighbors who have businesses there? My thought is no. Are you part of the problem?

    6. Dear Anon 10:05

      Oh, of course I would have, if I needed a wedding dress, or some beads. But, most everything that is for sale downtown, are not things I need in my everyday life.

      Incredibly, you say: "When you drove through town a few times while doing your errands, did you stop and support any of your neighbors who have businesses there? My thought is no. Are you part of the problem?" Do you really think the potential customers are "the problem"? Seriously? That I, and others are "the problem" because we don't buy stuff we don't need or want?

      Perhaps some day the merchants downtown will get a clue, and offer things people actually need? Do you really think people drive all the way to Sequim because they like spending the time, money and effort to get there?

      Do you think all the hundreds of thousands of people who drive through and past Port Angeles every year are all "the problem" because they don't see anything of interest downtown worth stopping for?

      And you wonder why the sidewalks are empty most of the time?

    7. You should have said "Yes, I am part of the problem." Costco and Home Depot are the only stores Port Angeles doesn't have. You can get everything from a gallon of milk to a butt plug downtown. You should go there sometime.

    8. Dear Anon 7:34


      Okay, then. I suggest Revitalize Port Angeles adopt a campaign based upon your views. Banners across the street saying "Port Angeles, you are the problem". Variations can be " You are a jerk if you don't shop in my store", and " I'm not successful, and I'm blaming you".

      I'm downtown every day. I don't spend a penny there.

      Thousands of people pass through downtown Port Angeles every day, yet the sidewalks are empty. They aren't spending a penny down town, either.

      Instead of voting yourself the "Best Town Ever", you might step back and do some serious thinking about why things are the way they are. Maybe some group counselling sessions to examiner the arrogant attitude that everyone is the "problem" but you. I know, this goes against Revitalize Port Angeles policies of having to ignore things you don't want to hear about. I would be kicked out of the group if I said there, what I say here. Tolerance? Open?

      Remember the phase "People vote with their pocketbooks"? YOU may think you are the Best Town Ever, but obviously few other people agree with you. The sidewalks are STILL empty.

  8. The "Best Town Ever" would have a functioning movie theater. All we have is the Lincoln, which is still for sale.

  9. There is no smugness in running a forum that berates the elected, reverts to name-calling and offers no solutions?

  10. We do have a movie theater, the multiplex at Deer Park. It's less than 8 minutes away from downtown PA. Virtually no small towns have the kind of movie theater represented by the Lincoln anymore. The multiplexes and the malls drove them out of business decades ago. Occasionally, you see something truly special like the Rose, but those are rarities.

    The problem with the Lincoln is that it sits there like a giant poster advertising a dying downtown. Nothing says "Last Picture Show," like, well, a last picture show. You might as well have tumbleweeds rolling down the street. It would actually be better for the town to have the building demolished than to have it stand there, empty and accusing, before tourists and prospective residents alike.

    1. No, no, no. Port Angeles does not have a movie theater. Deer Park is out on county land. If you don't believe me, just try walking there.

      I also challenge the "virtually no small towns" have movie theaters any more. Sure, lots of them are gone, but lots of them also made the transition to digital just fine. How did they do it? Well, two things.

      One was that they had owners who gave a damn. You know, people who actually wanted to make things work and make money and all that. Unlike the burnt out owner of the Lincoln who just let it run into wreck and ruin because he was too cheap to invest a single cent in the place. He made his money, and then some, and now he doesn't care. If Scott Nagel can scrape together enough suckers to raise the inflated asking price, great! He makes even more money. If not, well, as stated before, he's made his money already, and hello write off.

      The other thing that allowed many, many theaters to survive and transition to digital was that they, duh, saw that they needed to do so, and planned for it. They saved; they raised funds. But what they didn't do was wait until their theaters were closed, out of business, and for sale, before trying to save them. Once the patient has died, it's pretty hard to bring them back. You have to act while they're still alive, operational.

      But no. That would take planning, and forethought, and require acknowledging that things are changing - none of which are things that are encouraged or done much in Port Angeles. And so there it sits, the Lincoln Theater, STILL FOR SALE.

      Which means, the truth of the matter is, Port Angeles does NOT have a movie theater. Sure, there's one - ONE - in Clallam County. But that's not Port Angeles. Sure, there are two - TWO - in much smaller Port Townsend, plus the drive-in in the summer, but that's not Port Angeles, either.

      In closing, let me say that I do agree with you that all the Lincoln does now is advertise what a dead town Port Angeles is. It's like a giant headstone with a marquee.

    2. Yeah, but that's like saying Port Angeles doesn't have a Walmart because it isn't in city limits.

    3. I guess you don't understand the idea of city limits, Anonymous 9:15 AM. Because, if it is outside the city limits, it is, uh, NOT in the city. End of. Full stop. Sure, it may be near the city, people from the city have access to it, but it is not in the city.

      And, per your example, you can at least walk to the Wal-Mart from Port Angeles. Trying to walk to the movies at Deer Park would put your life at risk.

  11. The "Best Town Ever" would have elected leadership that looks out for the residents and the taxpayers instead of their good ole boy buddies. Leadership has ripped off the taxpayers for so long they now feel entitled to rip-off the taxpayers at will. And it works. That is the value of this forum. However, it would be nice if more of the bloggers here raised hell with the electeds--getting up in their stuff and reminding them who is paying the freight. But of course there would have to be competition on the ballot for that to do any good. Some of the bloggers here should declare for office. Several meaty spots are up for grabs. Must sign up by this coming Friday or it will continue as is.

    1. Not sure how you got ' Best Town Ever' out of it, but it is 'Best Outside Town.' Not sure if you have looked out the window recently, but if Port Angeles has one thing to offer, it is the great outdoors! Put all of our rotten leadership aside. The Olympic Mountains and the Straits. God's Country.

    2. Dear Anon 10:12

      Perhaps you might look beyond Port Angeles to see what the rest of the world has to offer. Or, what people in Washington State and Canada have available, deemed "Washington's Playground". Here is a site that may help you:

      You will see they have much more to offer people interested in the "great outdoors".

  12. Anon 10:12. I travel extensively and have been to Chelan. It is a mud puddle in the desert compared to Crescent and Sutherland. Thanks for the link, though. Oh, it doesn't work.

    1. Obviously, you are right. That is why Port Angeles is so prosperous.