Thursday, January 23, 2014

A Political Desk Pop-Up

A pop-up, in foodie terms, is a short-term restaurant set up with a clientele notified by twitter, rumor, and social media. In short, a foodie rave. It gives chefs a chance to experiment, young talent to get experience and (the cynic in me is strong these days) a way of sidestepping unions, reviewers, and local health inspectors. One week there is a private supper club in that storefront, the next week it is back to being urban blight.

So too does the Political Desk suddenly shows up, makes a couple announcements, then beats a hasty retreat to its lair. But there are things that need to be noted.

First off, in the Puget Sound area, we have some (very) local elections coming up. Didn't we just have a bunch of these? Well yeah, but these are for school levies (read, taxes which have specific goals). In the case of Kent, where Grubb Street is now situated, these levies are to renew expiring levies to fund schools, maintain educational programs (like bands) and provide equipment (Really? What happened to those used Mac Pluses we gave you twenty years ago?). Naturally, I vote YES on such matters, since I tend to like to have children around who are slightly less dumb and more cultured than the American average, but my cynical heart notes that we get to vote on spending money on our childrens' future, but no one really asks us when we open our pants (and by pants I mean coffers) to fluff Boeing.

Second off, there has been a change in the Kent City Council. Previously, you will remember that one of the candidates for office was charges with stealing nearly $300,000 from his own mother. This candidate, Ken Sharp, won the position, though just barely. This blog did not endorse Mr. Sharp, noting, among other things, that even if these charges were found untrue, he would be a wee bit distracted. Two weeks after being sworn in, Mr. Sharp has stepped down, as the charges (seven counts of first-degree theft) would be, in his words, a distraction. Yes, we called it here.

So, what now? Kent needs its seventh member of council. Previously, as when there was a death on the council, the council will consider candidates and appoint someone for the term (so no, you don't have to vote on this - I know that's a relief). But, this is happening relatively quickly. Like by end of day on Feb 7. So if you happen to live in Kent, have experience in civic, professional or volunteer organizations, have a high tolerance for bureaucratic organizations, and want a part time job that pays around $13K, here's the link to apply.

Per the Kent Reporter, three candidates have already applied, all individuals who have lost in the previous election. Bailey Stober was narrowly defeated by Mr. Sharp, and would be a solid choice. However ALSO as noted in this blog, he's had some problems getting his election finance records in order, and is being investigated by the Public Disclosure Commission (and the cynic within me notes that this investigation was announced hot on the heels of Mr. Sharp's resignation). Deborah Raplee was a write-in candidate in the Stober-Sharp race, and a previous member of council, which gives her the probable edge (oh cynical, cynical heart). Wade Schwartz lost in another race, and were I to put my two cents in, be my choice. But I don't get that chance because, um, democracy.

If only there was some OTHER election happening right now that we could hook this to, but such is the nature of things.

And with that, the pop-up closes down, before the fire marshals show up. More later.