Politics from the Palouse to Puget Sound

Saturday, September 17, 2005

Clang, Clang, Clang Went the Trolley, Ding, Ding, Dong is the Candidate

Yesterday, Mayor Greg Nickels of Seattle finally put the stake in the heart of the multi-gazillion dollar monorail boondoggle.

Pie-in-the-sky liberal social planners need not despair, however. Pullman City Council Ward 3 candidate Judy Kruger just proposed this today in the Moscow-Pullman Daily News: "Build a rail trolley system from the Compton Union Building to the corner of Main Street and Grand Avenue."

What???????? How could Pullman ever afford anything like that?? We can't even afford a $90,000 fire truck. A 2-mile long trolley line would cost millions. It's laughable. Even more laughable is her contention: "Pullman as Leavenworth” (stronger commercial architectural/zoning codes.)

That's right folks, time to break out the lederhosen and sauerkraut. Judy Krueger's model of "smart growth" is a corny, overpriced tourist trap versus the thriving, high-tech center we are becoming.

See, I told you these people see Pullman as a "Disneyland", or in this case, "Mister Rogers' Neighborhood." Judy Krueger wants to give us our very own trolley that will take riders to the "Neighborhood of Make Believe," where perhaps they will make purchase from King Friday or Henrietta Pussycat.

From Day One, PARD has droned on about Wal-Mart's low wages and bad health benefits. PARD has even proposed a "living wage" ordinance of $10.50 an hour aimed at Wal-Mart. But does Krueger honestly believe the boutique shops, sidewalk cafes, small food marts, and drugstores she wants for downtown will pay any better or have better benefits? I can't say I've ever seen such malodorous hypocrisy. Stepped in it a few times, but never saw it publicly proclaimed by a candidate for the city council.

Krueger says Wal-Mart is the antithesis of smart growth, but says it should be relocated. Which is it? The PARD board member is apparently trying to play both sides of the court. But we know what she's all about.

Don Heil, aka Mr. 1958, another candidate for Ward 3, says that "Wal-Mart presumes a more ambitious growth assumption." Personally, I want a city councilman that is ambitious about city growth.

Finally, there is the Ward 3 candidate of reality, Ann Heath. She states, with absolute accuracy, that Wal-Mart is consistent with the city's comprehensive plan. She also asserts: "Allowing substantial retail business development in other Pullman locations will help attract/retain "niche" businesses downtown by keeping resident shoppers in town and attracting shoppers from outlying areas". Amen.

The choice on Tuesday is clear. Vote for sanity. Vote Heath.


April E. Coggins said...

It's clear that Ms. Krueger and Mr. Heil have never owned, run or even worked in a business. As a downtown business, I find it insulting that my business is not welcome in their vision of Pullman. And where are they going to get the money to displace my store and replace it with a more "human scale" store?

Tom Forbes said...

The liberal elitist gobbledygook was flowing freely in the Daily News today. "Human-scale community?" As opposed to what? The small scale Christmas villages you can buy in Leavenworth? What the heck does that mean?

"Irrevocably shifting center of mercantile gravity?" No, that already shifted to Moscow years ago when a previous generation of Kool-Aid drinkers rejected the Palouse Mall.

Ray Lindquist said...

WOW, were do these people come from?? I am not sure where to start, I will have to think about this one for a bit before..... WOW

Sarcastic Housewife #1 said...

I meant to buy the paper and didn't get time. Guess I really missed this one. A trolley?!!! You've got to be kidding. I don't see how that will help Pullman build responsibly.

Readers, just so you know - I am a Pullman resident, but due to my job connections I've had to leave myself as the Sarcastic Housewife. I spent more time dealing with people trying to change my way of thinking rather than my job.

Tom Forbes said...

That's okay SHW #1, I totally understand the need for discretion. This is a small town with a very big and controversial issue.

April hit the nail on the head. These people have no business experience whatsoever. They are academics and bureaucrats. Hmmmm, let's see. How can we revitalize downtown? The answer is Business 101: MORE CUSTOMERS, which will generate MORE CAPITAL, which lead to INVESTMENT IN NEW AND EXISTING BUSINESSES.

What problem would a trolley address? Moving students we already have from one place to another? Is it so hard for them now to walk/bike/drive the few hundred yards down the hill? Students don't even have that much money to spend. Let's concentrate on getting some working adults into downtown as well. Typical New Age Leftist approach to any problem: A big, taxpayer-funded public transportation project.

Another liberal favorite is "aesthetics." Maybe if we "beautify" more, people will spend their money downtown. Look, I'm all for having the place look nice, but I personally have never spent a dollar based on a hanging flower pot. People spend their money based on convenience, prices, selection, service, and quality. Adequate parking downtown, to me, is more of an issue than a "riverwalk."

April E. Coggins said...

Apparently, Ms. Krueger is completely unaware that Pullman already has in place a very nice transit system. They are called BUSES!!

Tom Forbes said...

Ah, but April, Judy Krueger and her treehugger social engineering friends will tell you that "buses are not good for the environment" and "contribute to global warming, which as we all know, caused Hurricane Katrina." And "any fossil fuel based form of transportation is not sustainable" anyway. That is why we need "green electric streetcars" and more "bike paths leading to downtown."

Then, when they have gotten rid of everyone's car (and therefore independence) and forced everyone to live in "dense urban housing," they can tell us where to shop, how to act and what to believe, just like in that other "urban paradise," Moscow. Soviet Union that is, not Idaho (although it is getting harder to tell the difference.)