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Suggestions on voting - November 7, 2006 election

As a senior citizen now, and with a lifetime of deep involvement in politics (not deep, but I even shook hands with JFK) I have had one lesson drilled into my mind. Choosing who to vote for is always relative. We have two choices and we may not like either - but we need to make an intelligent choice that gives us the best possible future. Often it is the lessor of two lousy choices. Voting is not a time to make a protest or show how angry we are. It is a moment to make a sane and intelligent decision for the future. So - here is my advice to those who ascribe any value to it.

US Senate - vote for Maria Cantwell. Return her to the Senate. To my liberal and anti-Iraq war friends, especially - vote for Maria. While she has fence sat on the war and we may want to show our anger to her, we would be doing the dumbest thing we could if we allowed the Republicans to keep control of the Senate. If we dislike the war then we must do all we can to return Congress - House and Senate - to a Democratic majority control. Anything short of that and our loved America will sink further into a morass of war, terror, fear, loss of civil rights and all the other evils that the corrupt and criminal Bush administration is oppressing us with. Vote for Maria. Urge your anti-war friends to vote for her. On all other issues, she has represented us well - and even conservatives value her service.

US House Representative from the 2nd District - vote for Rick Larsen. Same reasoning here as for Maria. He has fence sat the Iraq war issue, but we need the Democratic majority in the House. Rick is an empty suit who drives around the district with multiple sets of suits and casual clothes so he can change at each stop and look like he belongs there. He pays more attention to polls than to the needs of his district. Roulstone is a viable candidate who - in another time - might make a good representative. He is intelligent and experienced in life. BUT - we as a country must get a Democratic party majority into the House of Representatives - and so we must vote for Rick Larsen if we want sanity to return to our country. I urge my liberal readers to please - swallow hard and vote for Rick. Hold your nose, but vote for him.

State Supreme Court Justice - vote for Susan Owens. Keep her on the court. She has done a good job, respecting our rights and writing opinions supported by the other judges. Her opponent, Stephen Johnson, is a special interests candidate backed by big property and developer big money.

State Initiative 920 - vote NO. Another proposed gift to the very very wealthy - - the multi millionaires. This initiative would end estate taxes - inheritance taxes - - on the very wealthy. We already have exemptions to protect family farms and small businesses. If this passes, we will lose $ millions of our school funds.

Initiative 933 - vote NO. Gawd - the developers permanent wealth machine. How to steal America. Dupe the citizens into voting away their rights, their money and their land. Poof - just like that. Oregon passed this a few years ago and are reaping a nightmare of absurd lawsuites and horrible projects. The backers of this say that while there is some problem wording in the initiative, it is a good law. Problem wording?? Bull. The wording was carefully crafted to screw the common citizens out of their money and land. The Seattle Times millionaire family is backing this and their newspaper is not to be trusted on what it says about this. Liberal or conservative in your politics, this is a very bad bill.

State Initiative 937 - vote YES. The big power companies have been very slow to develop green power - and this law will motivate them to develop wind and solar. It is funny how government protected monopolies always claim free market rights when it comes to customer service. Lets face it - they are profit motivated and will only develop green power if we mandate it to them. They asked for the monopoly and they have to take the regulations with it.

State constitutional amendment - vote YES. This will pass easily. No one objects to it. It adjusts 'head of household' tax exemption for inflation over the past many years.

Bellingham charter amendment to appoint the Finance Director - vote NO. We elect this finance watchdog now and we should continue. The mayor and council need watching. The city council put this on the ballot - and I guess they don't trust democracy. We people can best judge who is qualified - and motivated - to watch our city finances.

OK, now to Whatcom County elections for our representatives to our state legislature. We all live in either the 40th district - south Bellingham and Skagit County - or in the 42nd district - the rest of Whatcom County. We have six reps - but only five are up for election this year. Harriet Spanel serves for another two years of her four year term.

40th district reps - Dave Quall and Jeff Morris are shoo-ins for re-election. Morris is unopposed and Yoshe Revelle has not been a serious candidate against Quall.

42nd district rep - position #2 - Kelli Linville is a shoo-in for re-election. Craig Mayberry screwed up his campaign royally by running for office while owing over $200,000 in payroll taxes for some failed businesses. Yes, vote for Kelli just to make sure she is elected. Craig may be a viable candidate in the future.

42nd district rep - position #1 - vote for Jasper MacSlarrow. Jasper grew up in Ferndale, knows the legislative process, has a good work ethic and a good head on his shoulders. This is his first run for office and he should give us real representation in Olympia. Lets give him a try. Incumbent Doug Ericksen is too smart for his own good. Those who know him - and I do - know he is an arrogant and smug jerk. In Olympia he has the reputation of being the laziest representative in the legislature. It is time to release Doug into the private sector and let him earn a living by working. He may learn a few things.

42nd district senator - vote for Jesse Salomon. I was ready to think Jesse was just another liberal do gooder who had vague ideas about how fairness should rule the world. Instead I have watched a very savvy fellow with a good grasp of reality and the mental skills to hold his own and work for solutions for all of us. This guy is the real thing and we are fortunate to have the chance to put him to work for us. Dale Brandland after one term in Olympia has shown us what he showed us as sheriff - a very nice guy who is not very effective. Dale works with everyone but is not a rain maker. Jesse - as a challenger - has the odds against him. If you are not sure on this then trust me - give Jesse a chance.

That is it. Candidates not metioned are probably unopposed. I cannot add value to your thinking on Fire Districts and local issues. I am delighted that Mary Kay Becker is returning to the State Appeals Court as she is an outstanding person with a superb mind. I end by again urging my fellow opponents to the Iraq war to please vote for Larsen and Cantwell. If you don't and their Republican opponents are elected, then you become personally responsible for the continuation of the war.