Thursday, August 16, 2012

On the Road Again

No, Hawaii is not an option. This is the way I dress for work.
Things have been quiet on Grubb Street for a while, primarily because we're going to release Guild Wars 2 at the end of the month. Yes, it has been sucking up nights and weekends as we tack down all the final bits. We're real excited, and you should be too.

And reporting here will continue to be spotty, as I will be out of town next week, on a promotional tour for the game in four European cities - Munich, Hamburg, London, and Stockholm. We will be talking to mainstream press in a lot of these places, and are doing four cities in five days - very little down time. It will be a rock-star lifestyle, by which I mean that we will be shutting down and heading the next venue overnight. OK, it's more of a roadie lifestyle. I expect to learn how to sleep on airplanes. Wish me luck.

More later, but likely once I get back.

Thursday, August 09, 2012

The Political Desk: Primary Results

We come to the conclusion of what feels like the most expensive push-poll in the world, where we winnow down the candidates to (generally) the Expected Republican versus the Expected Democrat. 

Conventional wisdom states that for a low-turnout (seriously low) primary, the GOP in general should do better than the Dems, who muster more effort on their GOTV (Get Out The Vote) for the November election. The results look fairly dismal for the Republicans in this light, as they in many cases trailed their Democratic challengers. This may be in part to the miserable state of the national campaign at the moment (Their motto: "He said WHAT?"), but I think this is rather the result of the state not making a voters' guide available in print to the bulk of the state. A number of the more populous, left-bending counties did pick up the slack, and given the numbers, had a more engaged electorate. In short - a low-information electorate is a low-engagement electorate.

OK, on to the result. 

United States Senator - Maria Cantwell (D) and Michael Baumgartner (R). Cantwell comes in at 55% and should be good for re-election. 
United States Representative Congressional District No. 9 - Adam Smith (D) and Jim Postma (R), with "Wealth of Nations" Smith getting 60% of the vote. 

Governor - Jay Inslee (D) and Rob McKenna (R). The weird thing here is that everyone expected the better-known McKenna to win handily - at the moment he's trailing by three points. Strange.
Lieutenant Governor - Bill Finkbeiner (R) and Brad Owen (D)  The more liberal one is the Republican, but Owen posts in at a meaty 50%.
Secretary of State - Kathleen Drew (D) and Kim Wyman (R), shaping up to a "no-lose" election in fall. Jim Kastama is a distant third since why would people vote for a Democrat who sides with Republicans when a real Republican is running?
State Treasurer - Jim McIntire got all the votes and had no opposition. Oddly, he'll still be on the ballot this fall since Treasurer is a "political position". 
State Auditor - James Watkins (R) and Troy Kelly (D). Pridemore didn't make it. OK, I can live with that.
Attorney General - Bob Ferguson (D) and Reagan Dunn (R) with Ferguson at 50%+. Both men are on the county council, making it for a direct comparison of apples and apples. 
Commissioner of Public Lands - Peter Goldmark (D) and Clint Didier (R), again with Goldmark at 50%+.
Superintendent of Public Instruction - Randy Dorn got 50% plus for this "Non-partisan position" (we don't tell you whose side they're on), so I think he just keeps the job, and the state saves on printer's ink for the fall ballot.
Insurance Commissioner - Mike Kreidler (D) at 54% over John R. Adams (R)

State Legislative District No. 11, State Senator - Bob Hasegawa (D) and Kristen Thompson (R), just like before the election.  Hasegawa at 68% and pretty impressive
State Legislative District No. 11, Representative Position No. 1 - Jim Flynn (D) and Zack Hudgins (D), with Hudgins at almost 70%
State Legislative District No. 11, Representative Position No.2 - Sarah Sanoy-Wright (R) and Steve Berquist (D). Wait, what? OK, its a crowded Dem field so the die-hard GOP votes will bring forward the only listed Republican, but Berquist was not even on my radar, and was overspent by Stephanie Bowman, who had a list of endorsements as long as my arm. I was not swayed by Berquist's "Put a teacher in the state house" argument, but apparently many were, and he takes in the lion's share and advances to the general. Congrats. 

State Supreme Court - Justice Position No. 2 - Susan Owens at 63% keeps her job
State Supreme Court - Justice Position No.8 - Steve Gonzalez at 57% keeps his job, though the highly-endorsed incumbant lost in every county that did not provide a voters' guide. Low-information voters, indeed.
State Supreme Court - Justice Position No.9 - Sheryl Gordon-McCloud and either Bruce Hilyer or Richard Sanders. It is still close, and while Hilyer had endorsements, the ... um ... quirky Sanders has name recognition. 
Superior Court Judge Position No. 25 - Elizabeth Berns at 50.17% MAY get the gig, or will have a run-off with Roger Davidheiser
Superior Court Judge Position No. 29 - Sean O'Donnell at 76% will not appear on the ballot this fall.
Superior Court Judge Position No.30 - Doug North at 57% will not appear on the ballot this fall.
Superior Court Judge Position No.42 - Sue Parisien at 44% will run off against Chris Washington (talk about your name recognition).
Superior Court Judge Position No.46 - Judy Ramseyer at 61% gets the gig. 

And that's it for a couple months, until the election heats up again. 

Wednesday, August 08, 2012

Not the Political Desk

Yes, election day was yesterday, and most of the races for the general are settled, but there are still a fair amount of ballots that will show up (the ballots had to be postmarked by yesterday, so there's always a rush). So I'm going to wait for the state to release a few ballot counts before summarizing here. So instead, here's a video of Felicia Day (voice of Zojja) opening the Guild Wars 2 Collector's Edition.

More later,

Saturday, August 04, 2012

Cello Wars

There are moments in my life where I regret having stopped practicing the cello. This is one of them.

More later,