Friday, June 30, 2006

Whatcom County - New Growth Numbers

According to new estimates the state Office of Financial Management released Thursday:

Whatcom County had 184,300 people as of April 1, 2006, up 10.5 percent since 2000, making it the state's ninth-largest county and eighth-fastest growing county in the past six years.

Bellingham had 73,460 people, up 9.4 percent from 2000, making it the state's 11th largest city and 90th fastest growing.

Lynden had 10,750 people, up 19.2 percent, making it the 68th largest city and 38th fastest growing.

Ferndale had 10,280 people, up 17.4 percent, making it 71st largest and 45th fastest growing.

Blaine had 4,480 people, up 18.8 percent, making it 121st largest and 39th fastest growing.

Everson had 2,135 people, up 4.9 percent, making it 154th largest and 77th fastest growing.

Sumas had 1,125 people, up 15 percent, making it 191st largest and 55th fastest growing.

Nooksack had 1,004 people, up 16.3 percent, making it 198th largest and 49th fastest growing.

Details: go to and click on "population."

The state Office of Financial Management puts Whatcom County's Population Density at 86.95/sq. mi.. Which for state purposes makes Whatcom a rural county (density less than 100/sq. mi.). That rural designation is somewhat deceptive since of Whatcom County's 2,126 square miles about two thirds of the area is part of either the Mt. Baker National Forest or the North Cascades National Park [source]. That make the "private land" part of the County about 700 sq. mi. and the population density within that area about 265/sq. mi. Of the 184,300 people who live in Whatcom County, 56% (103,234) live in Incorporated areas. Nearly 40% of the population lives in the City of Bellingham.


U.S. losing terror war because of Iraq, poll says
Thursday, June 29, 2006
Bob Deans

WASHINGTON — The United States is losing its fight against terrorism and the Iraq war is the biggest reason why, more than eight of ten American terrorism and national security experts concluded in a poll released yesterday.

One participant in the survey, a former CIA official who described himself as a conservative Republican, said the war in Iraq has provided global terrorist groups with a recruiting bonanza, a valuable training ground and a strategic beachhead at the crossroads of the oil-rich Persian Gulf and Turkey, the traditional land bridge linking the Middle East to Europe. ...

... Asked whether the United States is "winning the war on terror," 84 percent said no and 13 percent answered yes. Asked whether the war in Iraq is helping or hurting the global antiterrorism campaign, 87 percent answered that it was undermining those efforts. ...
(full article)
The War on Terrorism (WOT) is run by Republicans and it's a disaster.

Wednesday, June 28, 2006

I-933 would let the foxes into the henhouse

If I-933 passes here in Washington, we could be subjected to far worse than what Oregon's taxpayers are facing right now.
Oregons Measure 37 is in force and costing taxpayers millions just to process the claims.
Funds OK'd to process Measure 37 claims

The money will allow the state to higher more staffing

Statesman Journal

June 23, 2006

A legislative panel granted $2.7 million in emergency funds Thursday to process a surge of compensation claims under Oregon's Measure 37 property-rights initiative.

The new money will enable the state to hire 18 full-time staff to process claims and meet a Measure 37 requirement to resolve claims within six months.

Property owners have filed nearly 1,900 claims with the state, and officials expect 150 new claims per month before a December deadline, said Lane Shetterly, the director of the Department of Land Conservation and Development....

... Collectively, claimants are seeking more than $4 billion in compensation from the state, Shetterly said. ... (full article)
If I'm figuring right, $4 Billion is about a third of Washington States annual budget. If I-933 passes in Washington, the claims will begin pouring in and $4 Billion may start sounding like a small number. Oregon's Measure 37 has time constraints and a deadline for claims, I-933 does not.

I don't see anything in I-933 that would limit the claims. A property owner could file a claim, get paid and then sell, the new owner could then file a claim, get paid and sell, ad infinitum. The only other alternative would be a waiver of whatever regulation the property owner objected to. For every property owner who receives a waiver how many neighbors will feel the use and enjoyment of their property has been diminished.

Initiative 933 is a civil litigators wet-dream, it would unravel civilization. Land-use regulation, Building codes, zoning codes are part of how We as communities protect ourselves; without them the alternative is to wait for the harm to be done and file a law suit.

I-933 isn't about protecting property rights, it's about using buzzwords and scare tactics to sabotaging our Representative Democracy.

Monday, June 26, 2006

No on 933 - Whatcom County Kickoff

Last Saturday the Whatcom County Grassroots No on 933 Kickoff was held at the Boundary Bay Brewery's beer garden, right across the street from the Farmer's Market. Eighty people turned out for the event. State Senate candidate Jesse Salomon. was there. Also in attendance were County Council persons Carl Weimer and Seth Fleetwood. It was a fine sunny day in Bellingham. Some speeches were spoke, some contributions were cajoled, some pleasing music was played, some excellent food was eaten and a good time was had by one and all. 'by golly'.

Thursday, June 22, 2006

more NO on Initiative 933

brace yourself effie!!!! here it comes....they even have a "How to" manual ....yikes!

This Land: The Northwest Property Rights Movement
The defining environmental controversy of the early 21st century in the Northwest states may well turn out to be the debate over property rights, and Oregon and Washington are taking center stage. A new Daily Score series. The defining
environmental controversy of the early 21st century in the Northwest states may well turn out to be the debate over property rights, and Oregon and Washington are taking center stage.A new Daily Score series by Sightline researcher Eric de

full post

Planned Confusion
Posted by Eric de Place on
06/16/2006 at 08:55 AM
Note: This is part of a series on the Northwest property rights movement.

Last week, I wrote about the torrent of look-alike initiatives in the Northwest--933 in Washington; 154 in Montana; and "This House is My Home" in Idaho--and I pointed out their eerie similarity to one another. All three Northwest property initiatives lead off with booming rhetoric about abuses of eminent domain. In reality, however, the initiatives are about an entirely different issue (one that I'll describe in a moment). And all three measures use the same bait-and-switch tactic to mislead to voters. Why would the initiatives all do the same thing? Could it be part of a coordinated national strategy?
In a recent how-to manual, helpfully subtitled: "Exporting
Oregon's Measure 37 to Other States," the Reason Foundation, a pro-business think-tank based in Los Angeles, laid out the strategy: confuse voters.
full post

Wednesday, June 21, 2006

Lip-Service vs. Real-Work

State Rep. Doug Ericksen (R) 42nd LD recently issued a press release saying:
Ericksen plans to send a letter to appropriate federal and local officials requesting that a new Community Based Outpatient Clinic for veterans be established in Bellingham. Ericksen has worked with veterans and veterans' groups on the issue, including a public forum, and the concept is overwhelmingly supported by the community. Veterans currently have to travel to Seattle and other areas to receive basic and specialized heath care
That sounds nice, but I happen to know that U.S. Rep. Rick Larsen (D) WA-02 has been working for years to get a VA Community Based Outpatient Clinic (CBOC) up here. In his April news-letter Larsen said:
The 2nd Congressional district is home to over 75,000 veterans, many of which travel up to 100 miles to receive medical, dental, and mental health treatment from the Seattle VA Medical Center. This cannot continue to be the only health care resource for veterans living in northwest Puget Sound.

I am dedicated to securing a Community Based Outpatient Clinic (CBOC) in Northwest Washington. During the veterans' healthcare workshops it was encouraging to hear that the Puget Sound Department of Veterans Affairs understands these concerns and will submit an application requesting a CBOC in the north Puget Sound area. I have been working hard to make this CBOC a reality. I am excited by this development and will continue working with the VA to bring health care closer to where our veterans live.
At the beginning of this month, the Bellingham Herald ran an article "Veterans closer to getting clinic in area". It talks about Larsens efforts but doesn't mention Ericksen at all.

In that light, Ericksen's press release starts to sound like he's jumping on the bandwagon after the works been done. But to be fair, I thought I should see if Doug had been doing good thing for Vets in the State Legislature.

I checked back and found that in the last session of the State Legislature there had been many Bills passed that help Veterans and military families.

The bills include:
  • - Veterans Innovations Program (HB 2754): provides crisis and emergency relief resources for veterans who are returning from military action. (Linville co-sponsor)
  • - Home sales/military relocation (HB 2439): provides an exemption from real estate excise taxes to members of the armed forces who are required to relocate due to military orders, if the selling price of the property is no more than 8 percent greater than the price paid for it. (Linville co-sponsor)
  • - Veterans/discrimination (HB 2564): prohibits discrimination against active military personnel or veterans as it relates to employment; credit and real estate transactions, commerce, and places of public resort, accommodation, or amusement. (Linville co-sponsor)
  • - Property tax exemption (HB 2432): provides property tax relief for veterans of the U.S. Armed Forces with 100 percent service connected disability with income of $70,000 and below, by freezing the assessed value of their home. (Linville co-sponsor)
  • - Tuition waivers for Veterans (HB 2233): will make waivers available to all eligible veterans; in addition, Higher Ed institutions must reach out to veterans.
  • - National Guard Business Loan (HB 2497): reduces the financial burden on members of the National Guard who are small business owners. (Linville co-sponsor)
  • - Check cashers & sellers (HB 2881): A payday lender may not threaten to contact the military chain of command of a military borrower in order to collect a delinquent loan. The definition of "military borrower" will now also include the legal spouse of a member of the armed forces, National Guard, or reserves.
  • - Military status/defendants (HB 3074): This bill creates a process to serve a notice on the defendant, which will give a service member an opportunity to assert his or her rights.
  • - WW II oral history project (HB 3078): By transferring the responsibilities for the World War II History Project from the Office of the Superintendent of Public Instruction to the Department of VeteransÂ’ Affairs we can make sure our veterans are a critical part of this project. (Linville co-sponsor)

Kelli Linville (D) 42nd LD co-sponsored six of the nine Bills, but Ericksen didn't co-sponsored any of them.

I searched some more and finally found a Bill (sort of) related to the military that Doug Ericksen (R) 42nd LD had co-sponsored: HB 1065 - Authorizing the armed forces license plate collection.

So, Congressman Rick Larsen (D) has worked to bring a VA Community Based Outpatient Clinic and to block increases to TRICARE health care premiums, deductibles, and co-payments.

State Representative Kelli Linville (D) has co-sponsored legislation to help veterans and military families.

State Representative Doug Ericksen (R) held a meeting, wrote a letter and tried to get credit for other peoples hard work.

- - It's time for Doug Ericksen (R) 42nd LD to GO. This isn't a partisan view, (unless actually supporting our Veterans has become a partisan issue). The Democratic candidate running against Ericksen is Jasper MacSlarrow

Tuesday, June 20, 2006

Freedom is on the March - right out the door!

AP Exclusive: Data Brokers Get by Subpoenas

Associated Press Writers

WASHINGTON (AP) -- Federal and local police across the country - as well as some of the nation's best-known companies - have been gathering Americans' phone records from private data brokers without subpoenas or warrants.

These brokers, many of whom market aggressively on the Internet, have broken into customer accounts online, tricked phone companies into revealing information and sometimes acknowledged that their practices violate laws, according to documents obtained by The Associated Press.

Legal experts and privacy advocates said police reliance on private vendors who commit such acts raises civil liberties questions.

Those using data brokers include agencies of the Homeland Security and Justice departments - including the FBI and U.S. Marshal's Service - and municipal police departments in California, Florida, Georgia and Utah. Experts believe hundreds of other departments frequently use such services. ...

... Congressional investigators estimated the U.S. government spent $30 million last year buying personal data from private brokers. But that number likely understates the breadth of transactions, since brokers said they rarely charge law enforcement agencies.

Neo-con's - your day (in court) will come.

Argentina holds 'Dirty War' trial

An Argentine police chief has gone on trial accused of murder and torture during military rule in the first such case since an amnesty was scrapped.

Argentina's Supreme Court ruled last year that legal immunity for former officers was unconstitutional.

The judgement cleared the way for hundreds of officials to be tried for crimes during the 1976-83 dictatorship.
This should be a "wake-up call" for everyone in the Bush Administration. The day will come when they too will be held accountable for their involvement in murder and torture.

Thursday, June 15, 2006

got grandchildren?? vote NO on initiative 933

No on I-933
I think we need to follow the native wisdom saying we should look ahead 7 generations to make the right decisions, ensuring a hospitable home for those to come. Initiative 933 takes us full speed ahead in the wrong direction
Small municipalities will not be able to enforce environmental regulations and it will cripple planning. Cities, counties and state agencies cannot charge a fee to claimants. Processing, studies, and litigation will be entirely shouldered by the taxpayer for claims made. The result will be "waive or pay."
This initiative is backed by out of state special interests. According to the Public Disclosure Commission, Americans for Limited Government, a group based in Illinois, has contributed $200,000.
Environmental protections are under assault at the federal level. We need to protect the State of Washington. This initiative will open the door for special interests to "do as they please." The "Property fairness initiative" is anything but.
Some people think Washington State will always be a beautiful place to live. It won’t be unless we citizens protect it. If I-933 passes, Whatcom County could resemble L.A. Say NO to unrestricted development with no regard to those who come after us. Say NO to Initiative-933.
(soon to be letter to editor...)

NO on Initiative 933

Grassroots Kick-off
When: 11 a.m. - 1 p.m., on Sat., June 24th
Where: Boundary Bay Brewery & Bistro, 1107 Railroad Ave. in Bellingham
Who: Everyone in the community. Families are welcome to attend.
To RSVP or for more information: Katie Ward, or 206.245.5644

the Bellingham Herald had this to say......

Wednesday, February 15, 2006
Property compensation: Who would
have to pay?

Supporters of a new initiative that would require the
government to compensate property owners for land-use laws must answer a lot of questions before they hope to get public support. Last week the Washington Farm Bureau filed an initiative it calls the "Property Fairness Initiative." The initiative would require the government to compensate property owners
for agency regulations that adversely affect the value of land. It would be retroactive, requiring payment for any regulation put in place since January 1996 that property owners can prove adversely affected their land values. Supporters have until June 7 to try to collect about 235,000 signatures in order to get the initiative on the November ballot. We suggest people
thinking of signing the initiative ask a lot of questions. For example: To which regulations does the initiative apply?

full article

this provides a really good analysis by Washington Chapter of the American Planning Association ..........

Chapter Board votes to Oppose Property Rights Initiative 933
At its March 14 meeting, the Chapter Board voted unanimously to oppose I-933. The Board authorized President Steve Butler to commit the Chapter to joining the Community Protection Coalition ( as soon as circumstances warrant and in the meantime asked the Chapter's Committee on Regulatory Fairness to continue its efforts monitoring and coordinating the Chapter's response to the Initiative. The Committee has prepared an "Analysis of Proposed Initiative 933 and its Consequences for Washington." Read more details here.

full post

very informative and well-sourced post on Washblog. man, all i can say is "how much is enough?????"

DeLay-Associated Group Spends $200,000 to Moot Out WA Laws
By noemie maxwell
Tue Jun 13, 2006 at 11:59:50 AM PST
Section: Washington State Topic: Environmental

Americans for Limited Government, a radical group from
Illinois associated with Tom DeLay and Grover Norquist, has poured $200,000 into a Washington State Initiative. I-933 proposes to moot out a substantial portion of Washington's environmental and zoning laws on private land. These are laws and regulations that the citizens of Washington State have
spent years negotiating into existence through our democratic process


Larsen (D) WA-02 - Speaks Up on Vets Healthcare

For Immediate Release Contact: Kimberly Johnston

June 15, 2006 202-225-2605

On Eve of Iraq Debate Larsen Reminds Public that Republicans have Cut and Run From Veterans Healthcare

Washington, D.C. - Rep. Rick Larsen (WA-02) released the following statement on the eve of the debate for a Resolution on Iraq & Terrorism (H.Res.861) in the U.S. House of Representatives:

“I am disappointed by the political fault line many in Congress have sought to create on the issue of Iraq. Congress has an obligation to find solutions in Iraq, not create phony fault lines. We must respond to the growing frustrations of the American people.”

“As Congress debates the issue of Iraq, we must consider the legacy that this administration will leave to our military. We are ignoring our responsibility to provide adequate healthcare to our returning veterans. That sends the wrong message to the men and women in our military.”

“The Republican budget for Fiscal Year 2007 cuts veterans’ funding by $8.6 billion below what is needed to maintain current services over the next five years. Congress must provide high-quality, accessible health-care and support services to those who have fought for our country.”

“Many Republicans have criticized Democrats for cutting and running from our responsibilities in Iraq. Tomorrow, I will ask those Republicans if they will continue to cut and run from our veterans’ and their healthcare.”

“As the next wave of combat veterans return from Iraq, Congress must continue our objective of putting Iraqis in the front seat of Iraqi security and moving our U.S. soldiers to the back seat.”

“We need to create stability in Iraq through a government of national unity. We need to remember our commitment to U.S. taxpayers as we spend reconstruction dollars. We need to combat sectarian violence. We need to crack the code on improvised explosive devices – the primary cause of U.S. causalities in Iraq. And we need to intensify the training of Iraqi police and military forces to combat and control counterinsurgency operations – enabling the U.S. to systematically draw down our troops.”

“I commend the Iraqi people and the U.S. military for their success and bravery in the recent strike on Abu Musab al-Zarqawi. The fall of Zarqawi is a victory, but there is little time for celebration. Much remains to be done.”

“The Administration has made countless mistakes since the start of the war in Iraq. As Congress looks to clean up the mistakes that have been made, we must speak out against this Administration’s tendency to overlook problems and push for a policy that centers on oversight of U.S. taxpayer dollars.”

“Congress must respond to the frustrations of the public by creating a secure future for our military and re-establishing a foundation for American efforts to fight terrorists and terrorism across the globe.”


Wednesday, June 14, 2006

Change is in the Wind

Abu Hamza al-Muhajir was named as the successor to Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, within a week and Bush's "Stay the course" is still a slogan not a policy. And to the rest of the World - US 'biggest global peace threat'
June 14 (Bloomberg) -- President George W. Bush's job approval rating is at 37 percent, up 1 percentage point, in a NBC News and the Wall Street Journal poll taken after the death of terrorist Abu Musab al-Zarqawi and the formation of a new government in Iraq.

Approval for Bush's job performance remains less than 40 percent for the seventh straight survey, NBC reported. The approval of the job of Congress was 23 percent, the poll found.

Forty-nine percent of registered voters want a Democratic- controlled Congress after November's elections, while 38 percent would like Republicans to retain control. That 11-point gap compares to a six-point advantage for Democrats in an April poll by the two news organizations. ...
The Republican majority in Congress has fail to do its Constitutionally required job of oversight and it's time for them to go.

42nd LD - Vote Jasper!

MacSlarrow still leading Ericksen


A former congressional aide challenging Rep. Doug Ericksen in the fall election continues to lead the state House Republican floor leader in fundraising.
Jasper MacSlarrow, a Democrat and former staff member for U.S. Rep. Rick Larsen, has raised $31,618 in campaign contributions, records from the state Public Disclosure Commission show. Ericksen, a four-term Republican representative in Whatcom County's 42nd District, has raised $23,395. ...(source)

Vote Jasper

Monday, June 12, 2006

Stupid Republican Tricks

WA State Rep. Doug Ericksen (R) 42nd LD is trying to sticking his nose into the Nooksack Tribes business...
... President Bush, responding to a question about what tribal sovereignty meant in the 21st century, said: "Tribal sovereignty means just that; it's sovereign. You're a -- you've been given sovereignty, and you're viewed as a sovereign entity."

To many Native Americans -- and Democrats, alike -- the president's answer spoke volumes about what they see as his ignorance of Indian issues. And to many, the operative word in Bush's response was the verb "given."

As the continent's first societies, American Indian tribes hold their status as sovereign nations with an almost sacred reverence; an inherent standing as self-governing, independent bodies dating back millennia, something that's always existed. ... (Friday, August 13, 2004(source))
Confusion about Sovereignty isn't confined to George Bush; WA State Representative Doug Ericksen , (R-Ferndale) is having trouble too.

The Nooksack Tribe is planning to build a new Casino on trust land North of Lynden in Whatcom County and the neighbors don't like it.

Even though the State has no jurisdiction over Tribal Land, Rep. Ericksen (R-Ferndale) has decided to get involved:
Date: June 08, 2006
... Ericksen also plans to send a letter to the Nooksack Tribal Chairman requesting that his tribe abandon its plan to build its new Northwood Crossing tribal casino in the heart of rural farmland north of Lynden. Ericksen has led public forums on the controversial issue. The proposed casino has drawn the ire of many area residents who are worried about various problems evolving from the increased activity in the rural community.

"These are very important issues to our communities and I'm encouraging local elected officials and community leaders to get involved. I've offered them a vehicle to do so - they can sign on to letters that I'm sending to appropriate officials by going to my website," said Ericksen. "This sign-on option isn't an end-all though. Concerned citizens are also encouraged to write their own letters and make their own phone calls about these issues. If they need contact information, my office can offer assistance." ...
Ericksen is responding to (or perhaps stirring up) citizens worries like:
“Our concerns, in a nutshell, are that economically, socially, agriculturally, it is a poor siting,” said 37-year-old Colleen Wolfisberg, yelling over the occasional horn of a passing car or semi truck near the existing Nooksack River Casino in Deming. (source)
BUT - Where was Rep. Doug Ericksen (R-Ferndale) a year ago when Ferndale citizens were trying to get their concerns addressed?
Ferndale Citizens for Wise Growth
We are opposed to a regional mall located along I-5 between Axton and Smith Rd. for the following reasons:
1. Increased taxes
2. Increased traffic congestion
3. Increased crime
4. Negative impact on historic Ferndale & Local Businesses
When it was Ferndale's citizens struggling to get the Mayor and City Council to listen to what worried them, Rep. Doug Ericksen (R-Ferndale) was nowhere to be found, he was uninterested and unresponsive. Could it be that in this election year he has suddenly found his sense of community involvement... especially when it doesn't involve bucking land developers who've traditionally backed him.

Thursday, June 08, 2006

Washington Citizens, Fight for Your Privacy

Protect the privacy of your phone records!

With the help of some phone companies, the National Security Agency may be collecting records of calls made by millions of innocent Americans. That's just plain wrong. The government shouldn't track when you call your mother, order pizza, or make other private calls -- and your phone service provider shouldn't help them without a warrant. This illegal spying includes domestic phone calls; contrary to claims by the Bush administration, it is not directed solely toward terror suspects or international calls.

You can take action to curtail the violation of your privacy: (click here)

Wednesday, June 07, 2006

Glow in the Dark Republicans


Yakima, WA– - May 26, 2006

• • Support resumption of safe nuclear power plant construction.
Oh yeah! Incredibly expensive, incredibly dangerous nukular energy... With uncontained, continuously spreading, deadly by-products that last forever.
DOE demands contractor return money for Hanford plant

By Shannon Dininny

The Associated Press

YAKIMA - The U.S. Department of Energy has notified the contractor hired to build a waste treatment plant at the Hanford nuclear reservation that it must return $48 million it was paid on the project, which has been mired in cost overruns and delays.

The so-called vitrification plant will convert highly radioactive waste into glasslike logs for permanent disposal in a nuclear waste repository. The plant has long been considered the cornerstone of cleanup at the highly contaminated Hanford site.

Under its contract with the federal government, contractor Bechtel National could earn up to $200 million for meeting the plant's $5.4 billion budget. That money is to be paid out as a so-called cost-performance fee over the course of the project.

So far, the company has earned $48 million. The Energy Department notified company officials by letter Wednesday that they wanted the money returned, saying it was now clear that Bechtel will not qualify for any cost-performance fee.

The lesser "appropriate fee for this performance incentive is zero," the letter said. The company has 45 days to respond. ...

... The current cost estimate for the project is more than $10 billion.

Friday, June 02, 2006

Diane Tebelius, liar or dunce?

There's been lots of Media coverage of the Washington State Republican Parties new anti-Brown-People/anti-Constitution Platform. And many prominent Washington State Republicans have been scrambling to justify and/or excuse the clearly racist statements made by delegates at the State Parties Convention.

Wednesday, Lou Dobbs (infamous race-baiting demagogue) did a segment entitle "Arguing Against Anchor Babies". When Lou began the segment by saying:
"...Let me turn you to, if I may, Diane. Why was it -- why did you take up the issue?"
Here's how she began her rationalization of trashing the Constitution:
you have to understand what's happening in the state of Washington. There's
a total lack of frustration about what is happening on our borders. In 2000,
across our border, came the millennium bomber. He was undetected and but for
the good eyes of some federal employees, he was captured. People are
frustrated and angry about this is happening.
So what does that have to do with the 14th Amendment or immigration? Why nothing, of course. Ms. Tebelius just followed the Republican/Racist fearmongering formula of mis-direction by opening with a story about 'terrorists'. And here's were the question of whether Diane Tebelius is a liar or a dunce comes in. The millennium bomber (Ahmed Ressam) was 'detected' and arrested at a point-of-entry by U.S. Customs Agents doing their job of protecting our Border.
Dec. 14, 1999 + Ressam arrested near Seattle

Ressam says that on the morning of Dec. 14, he called Meskini and told him he would be in Seattle that evening. That afternoon, he took a ferry from Victoria, B.C., to Port Angeles, Wash., with more than 100 pounds of explosives stashed in the wheelbed of the trunk of his rental car. His accomplice, Dahoumane, did not travel with him.

At Victoria, U.S. immigration pre-clearance agents were mildly suspicious of Ressam. They made him open his trunk, but saw nothing. He presented his fake Canadian passport, and the computer check turned up no previous convictions or warrants in the name of Benni Noris. Ressam drove his rental car, with its concealed bomb, onto the ferry heading for Washington state. Upon his arrival at Port Angeles, a U.S. customs agent became suspicious of his hesitant answers to her questions, and she asked for identification. Agents began searching the car. As they discovered the explosive materials -- which they at first took to be drugs -- in the trunk of the car, Ressam tried to run away. He was caught and arrested.

Tebelius got the story completely wrong; she got the year wrong, said Ressam was 'undetected' when actually he was 'exposed' and mis-identified "U.S. customs agents" as "some federal employees". So is Diane Tebelius an untalented liar or is she a dim-bulb amongst the low-wattage radical-right?

Thursday, June 01, 2006

Hispanic Republican Leader Speaks Out

Who knew the Convention over in Yakima would be such a window into the dark and shriveled souls of the Washington State Republican Party. David Postman has interviewed Raul Diaz, chairman of the Washington State Republican National Hispanic Assembly and Raul is pissed off! - but gee, who could blame him?

Raul Diaz statement from "Postman on Politics":
I'm no longer going to sit here and be the puppet for the Republican Party, for a few small-minded people who came through and did this. The 14th Amendment, you cannot take that away. You cannot take away these laws written by our forefathers.

If you took Diane Tebelius and you took these people who passed this agenda and put them in Alabama, slavery would come back in our lifetime.

Diane didn't have the guts or the leadership skills to make sure that the platform would reflect the true reform that President Bush's bill has. When President Bush had called us, and called everyone together, particularly Hispanic Republicans together, we worked our ass off. Forty nine percent of registered Hispanics voted for President Bush in Washington. Forty three percent of the Anglos did.

We cherish the same things any other Republican does. We love the freedom we have. But there has been a backlash of late. Not only of illegal aliens but now we have been shut out of the party.

As the chairman of the Hispanic Republican Party, I'm coming out and taking a stand against the Republican Party of the state of Washington and the platform. It hurts because they went after the kids. They didn't go after the parents. Shame on them. Shame on them.