It is time that Gov. Inslee and the tax & spend liberals began living within their means, just as we citizens of Washington State have to!
Received Mar. 28, 2015 by email
Somebody knows, of course, but aren’t speaking very loudly.
Some speculate if the plan isn’t to piecemeal the failed CRC light rail project into place before the voters that have rejected every single funding mechanism are wise to it.
Even though once declared dead by both Governors of Washington and Oregon, the zombie-like specter of the Columbia River Crossing light rail project continues to have new life pumped into it by those very Governors along with deep pocketed special interests hoping to reap millions on the backs of a struggling middle class taxpayer.
And one of those special interests is our own local newspaper of record, the Lazy C who has blindly supported the project since its inception and helped cover up many of the shortcomings as well as ignored concerns expressed by citizens.
We saw this as it became known the proposed replacement bridge to cross the Columbia River was to create a choke point for river commerce by an insufficient height, providing only 98 feet initially, upped to 116 feet later, still far lower than the current 178 feet when the lift spans are raised.
Instead of seeing the folly, considering how much commerce travels under the bridge, officials merely decide to ‘mitigate’ with the three manufacturers likely to be affected the most, Oregon Iron Works, Greenberry and Thompson Metal Fab.
Back from the Dead, like an old horror flick sequel, the monster we hoped was dead rises from the grave to once again taunt and torment taxpayers in Southwest Washington and Northern Oregon.
The Columbia River Crossing light rail project roars back to life as special downtown mafia interests quietly plotted against rejoicing taxpayers to give rebirth to the mega-project destined to bankrupt the middle class taxpayer in Clark County, Washington with ever increasing gasoline taxes, license fees, tolls and whatever other means they can dream up to force the struggling middle class to accept the burden of extending Portland’s ill-fated light rail a short distance cross state lines into our community.
All of the whining, crying and gnashing of teeth won’t help now, only divine intervention will breathe any life into the CRC and Inslee’s massive $10 Billion Transportation package to heaped on the backs of struggling middle class voters across the state with a 10.5¢ gas tax increase and other fee increases to fund it.
The Senate Coalition majority held fast and remained unified today as efforts get some to change their minds failed.
An AP report, Wash. Senate leaders decline $10B transpo plan indicated the final nail in the coffin late this afternoon.
Most all of us have played the game, Whack-a-Mole at one time or another. The little mole pops its head up and you try to smack it with a padded mallet before it drops back out of sight to core points.
I can’t help now but see the face of Rep. Jim Moeller (D. Portland/Vancouver) as the mole that keeps popping up and diving back down before voter smack him upside the head at the ballot box.
He talks big and often in vague terms when campaigning, admittedly hiding part of his platform from the voters to ensure he is reelected, only to then act against his constituents will and well-being, slyly letting them know he knows better and since they elected him, he is free to do as he pleases against them.
In any other district he would have been thrown out on his keester long ago, but he also know the district he decided to run in is so low-information and pro-Democrat that a road kill, dead raccoon running as a Democrat would win.
Representative Jim Moeller (D. Portland/Vancouver) sent out his usual spin the truth email this evening titled House Passes Budget – Senate Does Not Act laying all blame for a budget agreement not being reached on Republicans, as usual.
In the email, Moeller claims,
“Majority elected House Democrats have advanced substantial steps toward middle, compromise ground in striving for agreement with Senate Republicans.”
“I stand for our House budget that puts children-in-need before tax breaks, that maintains strong funding for our schools, and that preserves a stable foundation supporting basic human services while addressing our immediate needs.”
Ah yes, the usual “it’s for the children” again.
What Moeller leaves out is the steps the Senate Coalition Majority has taken to actually have another responsible budget and not just the regular burdening of the middle class with more tax hikes they can ill afford.
One time or another we have all heard the old adage, “Don’t take any wooden nickels” meaning to be cautious in one’s dealings. The exact origin of the phrase is debated, but we have come to accept a wooden nickel as indicative of something with little or no intrinsic value.
Such is the case with the Columbia River Crossing light rail project to force taxpayers in Clark County Washington to accept a financially ailing light rail extension from Portland, Oregon a very short distance into our community, even though voters have rejected it and all funding measures considered associated with it.
Since the collapse of the bridge over the Skagit River in Mount Vernon, Washington a week ago, proponents of the CRC light rail project have craftily used that collapse to urge swift approval of funding in the Washington State Legislature to ‘get going’ on replacing the aging spans linking Washington State and Oregon, completely ignoring the collapse had nothing to do with the bridge itself and was caused by an over-sized load on a semi-truck striking numerous structural beams holding the bridge section up.
Advocates of the Columbia River Crossing light rail project are pulling out all of the stops to coerce passage of funding to get moving on the project, ignoring citizen voices, pleas of the middle class to stop the bankrupting madness and throwing all caution to the wind that the current design calls for creating the lowest river clearance point on the Columbia River, making the new bridge more susceptible to collision from waterborne craft, unsafe in my estimation.
It didn’t take but minutes for proponents to grab hold of the Skagit River Bridge collapse to equate it to the need to replace the current Interstate Bridge with a light rail carrier. The Lazy C has run articles nearly every single day trying to tie the two bridges together and minimizing the collapse was caused by a semi-truck with an oversized load impacting and taking out structural support beams.
Waiting for results from the NTSB is out of the question when you have a crisis you don’t want to waste.
We even see the Lazy C running what can only be described as a ridiculous article claiming, Columbia River span could collapse if hit with big enough blow.
Since the collapse of the I-5 Bridge over the Skagit River in Mount Vernon, Washington, the rhetoric has grown increasingly heated over decades of deterioration of our highways and bridges. We all know hundreds, if not thousands of bridges across America have been allowed to fall into disrepair, jeopardizing the safety of our families as we commute back and forth.
With spending trillions of dollars each and every year, why have our roadways become tantamount to death traps for commuters? With well paid engineers, expensive equipment owned by states and state employed crews, as well as private companies fully capable of repairing, rebuilding or even replacing aging bridges, what possible excuse is there for our bridges to be in such poor condition?
Even with that, bridge collapses are rare. After the deadly Minneapolis Bridge collapse back in 2007, ABC ran a story Deadly Bridge Collapses Through the Decades listing such collapses at that time. But still, as rare as they may be, given the known condition of so many bridges, we are tempting fate with letting them continue in such condition.
There is little doubt that the Lazy C, legally known as the Columbian, the unofficial daily newsletter for the Democrat Party is one of the poorest excuses for a newspaper seen. Their bias reeks as does their contradictions in articles often published.
It’s not unheard of to see one article one day boasting of home values increasing followed the next day by foreclosures increasing. With Democrats largely in control over the past few years, the Lazy C spared little ink to try to convince readers how well off they were, even though they obviously weren’t.
Now we see them setting a new record in bashing of a Republican with some 24 articles in a week blasting State Sen. Don Benton (R 17) along with Clark County Commissioners Tom Mielke and David Madore, both elected by wide margins just this past November.
Even though the Lazy C admitted their act was legal and within the confines of a Commissioner’s duty, the two hiring 5 term Sen. Benton to also head up the County’s Environmental Department as set the Lazy C on a rampage as they have spent the last week whipping some people into a lynch mob frenzy over the hiring.
As we all know, Governor Jay Inslee snuck into town a couple weeks ago and issued marching orders to “increase the decibels” to shout down the struggling middle class taxpayers in Clark County who oppose being straddled with decades of increases in the gas tax, license fees, tolls and more to fund the CRC light rail project from Portland that they have repeatedly shown they do not want.
Apparently seeing an opportunity to try to derail the growing opposition, the Columbian mouthpiece is pulling out all of the stops to engage in a so called journalistic Kristallnacht assault on the choice of Sen. Don Benton to take over the vacant Dept of Environmental Concern for the County.
Since it came out Wednesday evening, we have been subjected to no less than 12 screeds objecting to the hiring, from articles, an editorial and Stephanie Rice’s hit pieces, 4 in a single day on the lazy c’s blogs.
Sunday’s John Laird rant can only been seen as the icing on the cake, or maybe better as the major window smashed by the jackbooted thugs in print as he falsely claims to have extinguished fires in opposition to the deeply troubled project.
As we see more and more Washington citizens and businesses joining in opposing the Columbia River Crossing light rail project, the desperation seen from Oregon in wanting to tap into our tax dollars to bail out their folly of light rail increases.
From Governor Kitzhaber’s proclamations published in the CRC mouthpiece Kitzhaber: Without light rail, new span across Columbia is history and Kitzhaber: Removal of light rail will kill CRC project to now an editorial in the April 25 Oregonian, Hey, Olympia: Suck it up and help build the CRC demanding we just ‘get onboard’ and do as they say.
Kitzhaber’s call showed that the calls of “decrease congestion,” “unsafe bridge” and “improve freight mobility” have been nothing more than lies and reaffirmed what this blog and several others have been saying for several years, light rail is the only factor driving this project.
More and more it appears as if proponents are following Washington Governor Jay Inslee’s admonition of “increase the decibels” in a late effort to finally ram the Columbia River Crossing light rail project off onto Clark County citizens, even though every indication shows they strongly oppose it.
Of course, “increase the decibels” we know to mean shout down opponents, marginalize them, ignore them and just blindly push ahead, shortcomings be damned.
Editor of the Columbian mouthpiece, Lou Brancaccio says, “There have been so many missteps on this Columbia River Crossing project that if it was entered on ‘Dancing With The Stars,’ it would be voted off before Mike Tyson. It’s just mess after mess. The tomfoolery is epic. Even its most ardent supporters would agree with this. For me, I hold my nose and close my eyes, and say we should move forward.”
49th Legislative District Representative Sharon Wylie says, “We can always wish for a better process, however, we wound up with a process of our own making, based on the quantity and quality of our participation. The process may not have been perfect, but it was open and it was fair.”
Unable to read the tea leaves, by all appearances proponents of the costly and controversial light rail project, falsely promoted as a bridge project, the Columbia River Crossing are responding to the call of Governor Jay Inslee to “increase the decibels” as if they were trained seals blasting on a horn to be rewarded with a small piece of fish.
Increasingly we see elected officials fall in lock-step along partisan lines to promote this boondoggle, falling back on all of the disproven talking points and at times, gross exaggerations if not outright lies.
Early last week we saw outgoing Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood parachuted in to manipulate the State Legislature into voting for and supporting this project where he said, “This is the 11th hour. Fish or cut bait. Make a decision.”
The Columbia River Crossing appears to be in a death roll.
We first read of the actions of the leadership in the State Senate Coalition Majority, who have been pressured all week to roll over and fund $450 Million to be used as Washington’s portion to begin work, calling upon Governor Jay Inslee to convene a fully independent, outside audit of the Columbia River Crossing project.
Music to my ears as I and several others have been making the same call for some time.
This past Sunday, April 3, 2013 saw yet another insulting editorial written by soon to be retiring Columbian Editorial Page Editor, John Laird: We should all live as long as the Third Bridge Cockroach.
Laird, a strong supporter of the Columbia River Crossing has now added “cockroach” to his repertoire of derogatory titles assigned to taxpayers that dare actually look behind the shroud of secrecy long enveloping the CRC and stand against it.
BANANA (Build Absolutely Nothing Anywhere Near Anything), Ankle Biters, Hounds of Whinerville, NIMBY (Not In My Back Yard), CAVE (Citizens Against Virtually Everything) and now Cockroaches to describe those who they also want to buy their newspaper.