Politics from the Palouse to Puget Sound

Monday, July 10, 2006

"Wal-Mart must be resolved as soon as possible"

This puerile drivel appeared in today's Summer Evergreen:

The topic in the Pullman community which has garnered the greatest debate since 2004 is the proposed construction of a Wal-Mart Supercenter.

The decision to lengthen the proceedings until a hearing in October comes as both good and bad news to The Evergreen Editorial Board.

Whitman County Superior Court Judge David Frazier’s decision to send the case back to the city examiner invariably lengthens the process and means a loss of interest in the community.

The Evergreen has received fewer and fewer letters to the editor on the topic, and has not received any in quite some time.

While the hearings have come to a standstill, the Editorial Board urges the citizens of Pullman to continue to participate in the process.

We urge you to continue to take an interest and do not let the timeline sap the momentum of interested participants and bystanders.

Concerning the date of the next hearing, we have mixed feelings.

We applaud the decision to continue with the Wal Mart hearings during the school year when students are at WSU and better able to express their sentiments.

However, we urge the board not to continue to delay in making a decision and lengthen the process even more.

Debate on the topic has been going on for two years, and as interest wanes, city officials may not get a clear idea of what the Pullman community wants in this matter.

The public will not be as effective as time goes on and other issues come to the attention of the area. This could lead to a decision made not on behalf of the public, but a decision made to satisfy city officials and Wal-Mart representatives.

The Editorial Board does understand the importance of the issue at stake and asks city officials to weigh carefully their decision.

With a Wal-Mart already in existence in Moscow, the Editorial Board sees another establishment in Pullman as wasteful and unnecessary.

If a large corporate chain is to come to Pullman, we believe it should be one that is not already established close by.

A Wal-Mart in Pullman will have repercussions on both local area small businesses and big businesses.

With these considerations in mind, the Editorial Board urges lawmakers to vote the proposition down.

Overall, however, we back the speedy resolution of this case, as well as continued support and interest from the community.
I do agree with the general sentiment that the whole process has gone on too long. In fact, as this editorial proves, it has gone on so long that the Evergreen editors have no idea what the hell they are talking about.

1. The only party reponsible for this delay is PARD. We wouldn't be here without them and their UFCW attorneys. It's not the city's fault or Judge Frazier's fault. The Evergreen should be attacking them. Judge Frazier knows the jihadis will appeal to the last union dollar is spent. No judge wants to be overturned on appeal, so he is merely making sure that any decision that leaves his courtroom has an iron-clad defense. That will take a certain amount of time. It is unfortunate and disappointing, as people do lose interest, but it is necessary and will result in fewer delays down the road.

2. Where is the mention of the costs to taxpayers of this delay? Even students pay sales taxes and property taxes indirectly through rent. That's the real issue with the delay. All this tilting at windmills is costing us big time when we can least afford it.

3. Receiving fewer letters? The Evergreen should print some of the letters received from Wal-Mart supporters months ago that that never got published ( I can think of four off hand). No wonder people stopped writing. It's pure sensorship. Plus, the Evergreen is so blatantly anti-Wal-Mart, why bother anymore?

4. What difference does it make if school is in session for the appeal hearing or not? No further public testimony will be allowed. Students had their chance last January and stayed away in droves The sad reality for the liberals is that most WSU students don't care that much one way or the other. Heck, half of them have graduated and left in the two years this has been going on anyway.

5. What "board" is making a decision? It's up to Judge Frazier now. For that matter, public opinion and city officials' "decisions" don't matter either. The decision has already been made and Wal-Mart has been APPROVED. Judge Frazier will only determine if any administrative errors were made.

6. Ah, the old mantra of "We already have a Wal-Mart in Moscow" again. Look, a Wal-Mart Supercenter is a completely different store than the Wal-Mart discount center in Moscow. It will have a much bigger retail selection, as well as groceries, which Pullman desperately needs. This is the free market. We don't pick and choose who opens a store in Pullman. That is up to investors, not 20-year old college kids. Target has turned down Pullman on several occasions. I presume Costco, Fred Meyer and others have also looked at and rejected Pullman. We are not a desirable location for a lot of reasons (demographics, location, sales taxes, minimum wages, etc.). We should be thanking Wal-Mart for taking the chance on us so others will follow.

7. "The Editorial Board urges lawmakers to vote the proposition down." That's too stupid to even dignify with a response. One more time, with emphasis: NO LAWMAKER HAS OR EVER WILL VOTE ON THIS PROJECT!! IT HAS ALREADY BEEN APPROVED BY THE PULLMAN PUBLIC WORKS DEPARTMENT AND THE HEARING EXAMINER!!! It's this kind of ignorance that shows why students shouldn't have an input in the process.

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Scotty said...

Now, now, Tom, be nice! :) Not all students are as illadvised as the editoral board. I think as I student I was pretty well informed and made good decisions.

"This could lead to a decision made not on behalf of the public, but a decision made to satisfy city officials and Wal-Mart representatives."

What is interesting is that quotation would make someone believe that the public doesn't want WalMart. When really it is a subset of the public that doesn't want WalMart. If EVERYONE in the public did not want a WalMart it would not come as it would surely go out of business.

But the reason for fighting WalMart now is that people know if WalMart makes it to Pullman it will thrive and survive.

This is the same reason people try to stop initative gatherers from getting the necessary signatures to get an issue on the ballot. Generally once it makes it to a ballot the public as a whole gets to decide by voting rather than not giving the public the chance to vote.

This is what would happen with WalMart, the public would vote with their wallets, and those against WalMart knows that the vote (money spent) would be in favor of WalMart.

Sarcastic Housewife #1 said...

I firmly believe that Timmy's job as Associate Dean of the College of Liberal Arts directly influences what the paper writes - no matter what he claims. Heck, Chris is probably one of their advisors and if not he has his hand in the pocket of advisor, wink wink.

Uncle Bubba said...

A rather bold statement from the staff of the "EVERWIERD".

"The Editorial Board does understand the importance of the issue at stake and asks city officials to weigh carefully their decision."

Well now let's reword this a bit.

The People of Pullman do understand the importance of the issue at stake and asks the Editorial Board to weigh carefully their decision.