The Seattle area, once the trendsetter for the counter cultural movement complete with daring piercings, Doc Martens, and the heroin second hand smoke infused despondent guitar solo of the grunge movement, now readily imports chilling narratives of mind numbing politics leading to short-sighted decisions of governing bodies, and the grotesque craziness threatens to propagate in other regions with the fervid sociopathic enthusiasm of a copycat to a serial killer. The current culture of policy is truly this bad and there is no turning back.
The Seattle City Council, as residents search for answers of how these people were ever elected, passed a controversial business head tax Friday, where larger commercial entities will be forced to pay approximately $500 a year per employee for funding homeless programs. Although the city is already facing a deluge of bums, thanks to a system that basically enables individuals to live a rent free college dormitory lifestyle funded by the middle class, and complete with car camping privileges and nurse-assisted injection sites, the additional $75 million per year will certainly fuel a cottage industry of discontent as downtown streets are transformed into a post apocalyptic dystopian world of detritus, the constant harassment of consumers and tourists, and of course the needles. It’s all about the damned needles. The propensity towards socialism is simply a microcosm, when weighed against the overall level of corruption at the civic level.
Politically, if Seattle is Caracas, then Ballard, just to the North of downtown, is Port-au-Prince or maybe even Kinsasha. Portland and San Francisco would be the most apt metaphors, but that would entail giving too much credit to the powers that be. After a series of truly ugly events that merit mention, the historically vibrant Scandinavian fishing community is at the front lines of a nasty battle involving jobs, rights, bikes and beer.
Last Friday night, one of the dubious members of the Seattle City Council, Mike O’Brien, was ceremoniously tossed from a private reception, after he knowingly barged his way into an angry hornet’s nest of constituents and opposition. O’Brien and a non-profit lobby group disguised as an advocacy organization, the Cascade Bicycle Club, have been aggressively pushing for a bike trail extension along the Ballard waterfront filling the gap in a regional cycling route. The $12 million per mile planned development, has local businesses and residents up in arms, as the illogical route will adversely affect commerce and jobs. Ballard is not only a major hub for the local fishing fleet, but also boasts various industries. O’Brien’s bizarre decision to attend the soiree predominately consisting of fishermen and workers enjoying a beer or two at a local shipyard which will have to relocate if the trail is approved, is just the tip of the iceberg in a messy under the radar scandal. The whole incident smacks of a set-up conjured up the overzealous politician, who is appallingly out of touch with the majority of the population he represents. To culminate the evening, O’Brien’s wife shouted a few popular four letter words to the crowd as the couple was leaving. An alternative route a couple of blocks away and only 100 feet longer (a few more seconds when on a bicycle), that makes more sense logistically and financially, has been effectively shouted down by the downtrodden duo of O’Brien and the Cascade Bicycle Club.
According to Mynorthwest.com and talk show radio host Dori Monson, who is a lifelong resident of Ballard, the ulterior motives of the politically active bike club were clearly evident way back in 2014 as displayed in this pointed email from a staff member in regards to the trail extension. “Once it’s built, the operations of Salmon Bay Sand & Gravel and other light industry will likely have to be limited during evening hours due to noise issues — especially if the development is a hotel, apartment, or condo,” he wrote. “Once their hours are limited, it’s only a matter of time before they sell out and give up the litigation.”
When the author of the memo was questioned as to the real motives of the trail, the individual balked and claimed a faulty memory in failing to acknowledge the existence of the email.
But this is what it boils down to in cities that are overrun by progressives, thuggish ideological guerilla tactics where politics are dangerously intermixed with business ventures in targeting selected industries. In the case of Ballard the startling equation works out like this. The city benefits from replacing blue-collar industries with droves of tech workers and increased tax revenue, the bike club gets their sacred pathway, and “associates” of the bike club and the club itself profit from the multi-use developments. It’s the new mafia, marked with a twinge of socialism and fraud.
On the other side of the fence, the middle class non-techie demographic of society again takes a hit as skilled labor positions dissipate into the Puget Sound fog and the cost of living goes up in proximity to the luxury developments.
These pseudo-intellectual radicals elected into office only because of necessity, as reasonable and sane individuals understand that bureaucracy is implacable, continue to perpetuate a complete detachment to balance and what is best for the greater good, in caving to the minority and special interests groups in forming alliances which are borderline criminal. As residents in Ballard and other neighborhoods attempt to protect their families, homes, and businesses, they are continually shouted down by the elitist members of an extremism so noxious and counterproductive, that duty and accountability are completely obscured by overspending and the belief that government is the necessary force in ensuring a successful future.
What complicates the Ballard controversy, is that the quite liberal local mainstream media continues to recreationally bunk with the homeless and bike lobby, and any content that would be a detriment to the two causes goes unreported or is eloquently spun in favor of an agenda. The only possible recourse for residents is in organizing public outreach events and future voting efforts, however the powerful lobby groups on the opposite side, tend to spend large sums of capital in hosting protests and employing bullying tactics.
While the Seattle City Council just set a gruesome precedent in giving away the downtown key to a tens of thousands of nomads and potentially losing the Amazon corporate headquarters in the process, the reprehensible actions of O’Brien and the Cascade Bicycle Club completely redefine the concept of underhanded corruption in engineering society for selfish purposes. In the new Ballard, bikes supplant jobs and cars, as the priority.