Politics from the Palouse to Puget Sound

Monday, June 09, 2008

"Green Party candidate challenges Schmick"

Unlike Kyana "Gee, I Haven't Lived Here Long But I Think I'll Run for the Legislature" Kelley, Christopher Winter actually has an agenda.

Unfortunately, it's nuttier than a Claxton fruit cake. Winter wants to turn Washington into France with:
  • Heavy taxation to pay for free college education for everyone

  • 30-hour work weeks

  • 30 days of mandatory paid vacation for all workers

  • Legalization of hemp for "food, fiber and fuel"
  • There's currently not a Green Party candidate in our state legislature, and if one is elected, it ain't gonna be from the 9th District.

    The sad thing is that due to our new "top two" primary system, Kyana and Christopher can't both be on the ballot to split the moonbat vote.

    From last Thursday's Whitman County Gazette:
    Clarkston sociology instructor Christopher Winter Monday filed his candidacy for the 9th District State Representative seat currently held by Joe Schmick, R-Colfax.

    Winter, 49, will run under the flag of the Green Party on a platform of reforms to the state’s tuition and labor systems and to the manner in which public lands are managed.

    “The working middle class is hurting because of the policies we are currently operating under,” said Winter. “In the richest nation in the world, this is ridiculous.”

    He added his decision to run was partly based on a need to overhaul the current political system.

    “Honestly, I didn’t want the incumbent, Mr. Schmick, to run unchallenged for his seat,” he said.

    Winter is calling for a “more European” approach to paying for education and in labor practices.

    In response to what he called a “phony” student loan program, Winter is proposing across the board tuition waivers for undergraduate students at state universities.

    “This would be a social investment that helps everybody,” he said. “The current system only benefits private investors and academic institutions at the expense of students.”

    He added the large debt load of student loans after graduation puts an undue amount of stress on young families.

    “Students come out of college, and they have to pay $700, $800 every month just to pay off their student loans,” he said. “That’s money that could go towards Tae Kwon Do lessons, piano lessons or even family vacations.”

    To pay for the reform, Winter proposes a new education tax.

    “This will benefit society as a whole,” he said. “Since everybody will benefit, I think everybody should have to pay.”

    To further pay for the waivers, he proposes a restructuring of state spending on education, especially from lottery proceeds, and less new construction on campuses.

    Winter is also proposing a 30-hour work week and mandatory 30-day paid vacations to rejuvenate workers.

    “If the French can give their citizens a 30-day paid vacation, certainly the state of Washington and the US can,” he said.

    If Washington’s workforce were more rested and less agitated, he added, the amount of alcohol and illicit drug used as well as the instances of spousal and child abuse would decline.

    Winter, a former park ranger and fisheries technician, also called for reform in the management of public lands.

    He said the state has turned over too much of that management to private companies, and that has lessened the appeal to quality employees.

    Winter also called for the removal of barriers to the agricultural production of hemp for food, fiber and fuel.

    Winter admitted his platform is ambitious, but added if reforms are to take place, they have to start somewhere.

    “You’ve got to start in order to get it done,” he said. “I can tell you that if I’m elected I’m going to go after these reforms as hard as I can.”

    Winter teaches sociology, both in person and online, at several colleges. He and his wife Christine have lived in the Clarkston area for 10 years. They have three children, Carson, Bridger and Hannah.

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