In which a group of graying eternal amateurs discuss their passions, interests and obsessions, among them: movies, art, politics, evolutionary biology, taxes, writing, computers, these kids these days, and lousy educations.

E-Mail Donald
Demographer, recovering sociologist, and arts buff

E-Mail Fenster
College administrator and arts buff

E-Mail Francis
Architectural historian and arts buff

E-Mail Friedrich
Entrepreneur and arts buff
E-Mail Michael
Media flunky and arts buff

We assume it's OK to quote emailers by name.

Try Advanced Search

  1. Seattle Squeeze: New Urban Living
  2. Checking In
  3. Ben Aronson's Representational Abstractions
  4. Rock is ... Forever?
  5. We Need the Arts: A Sob Story
  6. Form Following (Commercial) Function
  7. Two Humorous Items from the Financial Crisis
  8. Ken Auster of the Kute Kaptions
  9. What Might Representational Painters Paint?
  10. In The Times ...

Sasha Castel
AC Douglas
Out of Lascaux
The Ambler
Modern Art Notes
Cranky Professor
Mike Snider on Poetry
Silliman on Poetry
Felix Salmon
Polly Frost
Polly and Ray's Forum
Stumbling Tongue
Brian's Culture Blog
Banana Oil
Scourge of Modernism
Visible Darkness
Thomas Hobbs
Blog Lodge
Leibman Theory
Goliard Dream
Third Level Digression
Here Inside
My Stupid Dog
W.J. Duquette

Politics, Education, and Economics Blogs
Andrew Sullivan
The Corner at National Review
Steve Sailer
Joanne Jacobs
Natalie Solent
A Libertarian Parent in the Countryside
Rational Parenting
Colby Cosh
View from the Right
Pejman Pundit
God of the Machine
One Good Turn
Liberty Log
Daily Pundit
Catallaxy Files
Greatest Jeneration
Glenn Frazier
Jane Galt
Jim Miller
Limbic Nutrition
Innocents Abroad
Chicago Boyz
James Lileks
Cybrarian at Large
Hello Bloggy!
Setting the World to Rights
Travelling Shoes

Redwood Dragon
The Invisible Hand
Daze Reader
Lynn Sislo
The Fat Guy
Jon Walz


Our Last 50 Referrers

« Older, Younger, Texan | Main | Spitzer Listens »

November 15, 2007

School Board Platform

Donald Pittenger writes:

Dear Blowhards --

Seattle is still a fine place to live for most residents. But the politics can be pretty weird for mindless right-wingers such as me -- especially within the city limits. I imagine San Francisco is even farther out, as might be student voter dominated places such as Berkeley and Santa Cruz, California.

Just for the heck of it, consider the District No. 3 race for the Seattle School District board ("District No. 3" is practically meaningless, as all voters in the school district area get to vote for candidates in each "district.")

The following is the candidate statement for David Blomstrom as it appears in the voters' pamphlet. The link is here, but I don't know how long it will be active.

America is being destroyed by corporate corruption, and we must fight back. Yet how can we bring George W. Bush and Bill Gates to justice if we can’t even reform our own local school board? In other news, did you know this may be Seattle’s LAST school board election? The media, public officials and school board candidates are complicit in their stunning silence on this issue.

A former Seattle Schools employee turned whistle-blower (see “The Olchefske Files” online), I’ve advocated an authentic audit of the district since my first campaign in 1999. (Our new superintendent hasn’t earned $250K!) Let’s replace the Seattle Education Association with a real union (e.g. the Wobblies) and ban the WASL, a tool used by corporations to keep children down.

I also advocate socialism - not Soviet-style, but more in line with Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez’ vision. The oil industry should be nationalized, and money spent on weapons used to murder civilians in Iraqistan would be better used to fund free medical care. (By the way, as a children’s advocate, I cannot support the troops who have slaughtered so many children in foreign lands. Shame on them.)

Our schools should similarly be un-privatized, and the Alliance for Education given the boot. (How many schools have been ruined or closed since Bill Gates began “donating” money to the Seattle School District?)
I say screw Seattle civility, and embrace children and democracy instead. Even if your only concern is rising property taxes, you ignore Seattle’s Education Mafia at your peril. Beware candidates who proclaim themselves “national education consultants” and avoid the issues yet are endorsed by our corrupt media. (Remember: The Seattle Times endorsed president AWOL.) (Continued at; Bonus: My adventure with the privatized U.S. Postal Service!)

Candidate David Blomstrom

I assume Blomstrom's statement is not satire.

And how did he fare when the November 6th votes were counted? As of yesterday, he had 24,785 votes, 22.85% of the total.



posted by Donald at November 15, 2007


Well, I will say this. Imagine how it must feel to be that "Morally Superior"? I am serious. He has found his religion. Granted, he probably hates religion and religious zealots.

Posted by: Ian Lewis on November 15, 2007 4:46 PM

I'll let you in on a Berkeley secret.

The students aren't the crazy ones. Berkeley students are quite possibly the most right-wing demographic in the area. This makes sense, as the school is full of Asians such as myself, and we tend not to be the ones spewing the above sort of stuff. Mostly we're engineering, science, and finance majors. When was the last time you saw protests lead by engineers?

The wierdness from Berkeley comes from a significantly older, whiter, and technologically incapable demographic - the wacky locals who certainly aren't smart enough for EECS or Haas, but move to Berkeley to recapture the 60's

Posted by: secret asian man on November 15, 2007 5:34 PM

Ah, so there is a politically worse place to live than Madison WI. This will be a great comfort to me! Thank you!

Posted by: Lester Hunt on November 15, 2007 6:30 PM

asian man -- I have to assume that you are correct because I haven't been to Berkeley much since the early 90s. It was an odd place then (1980-95), with at least three different "towns" within the city. There's the Berkeley Hills with very expensive houses and those who could afford to live there. Then there were the people living down on the flat part who weren't students. Finally there were the students. I recall that ideological twists and turns got so complex that once upon a time a black, female city council member wasn't allowed (by the others) to vote on an issue because she owned properties and had renters. Apparently being an eeevil landlady trumped sex and race.

Has Berkeley gotten any more mainstream in the last few years?

Posted by: Donald Pittenger on November 15, 2007 6:34 PM

Socialism, not Soviet, but Chavez's style?
Trotsky help us.

No, seriously, Donald - 22+odd percent of vote? That's a fine Zoo to live in, worse than NY.

Posted by: Tat on November 15, 2007 8:23 PM

David Blomstrom for president!!!!

He looks like he just stepped off the boat in 1873 and is ready to start hacking down trees.

Posted by: Charlton Griffin on November 15, 2007 8:23 PM

Woodstock's just as crazy.

The critical issues in our recent Town Board election were the Iraq war and global warming.

The Woodstock Times stage managed the Town Board candidacy of Jay Wenk, who is famous locally for trying to prevent kids from enlisting in the military. (This is considered clever and daring by the Woodstock left.) Wenk wants desperately to be a martyr, but no judge will put him in jail. Wenk has tried every 60s theater bit he can think of, but no go. The judges keep letting him go. So much for the repressive Bush junta.

The Times printed a full page story about an anti-war demonstration that Wenk organized. The demonstration drew one participant... Wenk.

Posted by: Shouting Thomas on November 15, 2007 9:23 PM

Hilarious. My guess is that most people who voted for him are not in a position of any sort of power (thank god!!!).

Posted by: thehova on November 16, 2007 1:30 AM

Democracy gets what democracy deserves.

Posted by: The Social Pathologist on November 16, 2007 6:36 AM


This kind of plant grows in Seattle along with the moss that sprouts out of walls and cracks in the sidewalk.

Trouble is, Blomstrom is not all that different from Seattle's own congressman, Jim McDermott. Only a city surrounded by Fort Lewis and the Stryker Brigade, Whidbey Island Naval Base, Everett Naval Base, Trident Nuclear sub base, Sand Point Naval base can afford to take on such trippy-hippy-dippy postures, with Marx n' cornflakes for breakfast.

Seattle is so ideologically charged; I swear that mildly conservative thoughts set off smoke alarms in hipster coffee shops. It's unbelieveable up here; hang in there Donald.

Posted by: Doug on November 16, 2007 10:11 AM

All of you live in Bushland when you compare your locales to the People's Republic of Cambridge!

Today's paper reports that the local Boy Scouts, after a few weeks of handing out informational fliers at the local stores and public buildings about their Election Day collection boxes for donated necessities they were sending to troops in Iraq and Afghanistan, had the boxes removed by the city commissars when some anonymous comrade complained that the local troop was "promoting war"!!!

Of course, what would you expect from a city with a gay, black "honorary" mayor who lives in subsidized housing (after the state outlawed rent control).

Posted by: Brutus on November 16, 2007 12:50 PM

He does look somewhat, ah, unevolved.

Posted by: PatrickH on November 16, 2007 4:07 PM

Hey Donald, would you prefer to live in a red-blooded, real American town like Plano or Sugar Land? I'm sure they'll love to talk with you about art over there, maybe even let you know how happy they are you're a member of the homosexual community. (Which you must be if you're interested in art.) ;)

I mean, these people are silly, but that is what you put up with living in a large coastal city. The question in my view is how much damage these people can do to the day-to-day running of the place. Cambridge seems pretty healthy, and as for Seattle, they're making tons of dough last time I heard.

Posted by: SFG on November 17, 2007 7:51 AM

Yeah, Cambridge is pretty healthy, even though it's now just a Disneyfied version of what it once was. Well-off lefties like to gather together in their own exclusive tribes; the People's Republic has more million-dollar properties than any locale in MA. Of course, not many of the children of these people are attending the local public schools, either.

Even their crime is different-biggest case there now is the Harvard grad student who stabbed to death a local Hispanic kid in a drunken rage after the kid made a comment about the drunk staggering down the sidewalk. Drunk punk wants a new trial because the original jury that convicted him wasn't given enough information about the fact that the kid he killed had a criminal record. Of course it all right for Harvard kids to stab a prole that pisses them off!

Posted by: Brutus on November 17, 2007 11:09 AM

Why are the most liberal enclaves also the most desirable places to live? ST, why do you live in Woodstock? I'm sure natural geography plays a part, but why else? Donald, why Seattle? Michael, why NYC?

Posted by: the patriarch on November 17, 2007 11:15 AM

Man, was I ever glad to leave Seattle. The only thing I miss about the place is Scarecrow Video -- I doubt I'll ever see a video store that good again in my lifetime.

Posted by: Dirk Deppey on November 17, 2007 3:01 PM

Easy. Desirable means people want to live there, which drives prices up and people get sick of the inequality. Mike said as much with people getting interested in aesthetics when their basic needs are met.

Besides, artsy types tend to lean to the left. Conservatives, by and large, care a lot less about culture (present company excepted, of course).

Posted by: SFG on November 19, 2007 10:29 PM

Post a comment

Email Address:



Remember your info?