Category Archives: General

Everything that’s not something else

Democracy Slouchers ~ Part 2

August 17, 2017 Seattle’s new Democracy Voucher Program has a long way yet to go to fix Seattle politics. One could argue that, rather than discouraging corruption, the program is actually rewarding it. The program gives qualifying candidates access to … Continue reading

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Democracy Slouchers

July 4, 2017 I-122, the “Honest Elections” initiative (aka the Democracy Voucher Program) was supposed to get money and corporate influence out of Seattle politics. It looked great on paper. The PROBLEM: “Wealthy special interests have too much power in … Continue reading

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The Testament of Christian Otto

June 24, 2017 Two months ago, I was contacted by a homeless man named Chris Otto. Mr. Otto claimed he had been in a position of authority at two homeless programs run by SHARE (the Seattle Housing and Resource Effort) … Continue reading

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Ghostwriter

June 5, 2017 What would you think if you discovered automobile executives had written a bill on auto safety and handed it to your senator to sponsor? And what if you learned those same executives had penned pro-industry letters to the … Continue reading

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Puff Piece

April 29, 2017 In my years of trying to bring the Low Income Housing Institute (LIHI) to justice, I have been repeatedly frustrated by their slick public relations operation. Here’s an organization that engages in a number of deceptive or dishonest … Continue reading

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Call Me Reverend

April 11, 2017 Call Me Reverend: The Bill Kirlin-Hackett Story Mr. Mild The first impression one gets of the Reverend Bill Kirlin-Hackett is of someone we’d expect to find singing kum-ba-ya around the campfire or handing out coffee and hugs at a … Continue reading

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The Margin Dwellers

April 4, 2017 A word of advice to aspiring reporters: Don’t ever volunteer for the poverty beat. It’ll tear the heart out of you. Meet Jennifer Allison (on the left). She’s the manager at the Georgian Motel on Aurora Ave N. … Continue reading

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Encampment Complaints: A suspicious pattern

March 23, 2017 The document in the link below was produced by Seattle’s Customer Service Bureau (CSB) in response to a public disclosure request from Safe Seattle. The document shows how many citizen complaints the City got in a six-week … Continue reading

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The Thin Veneer

March 13, 2017 In my time, I’ve been in some pretty bad places. Figuratively and literally. I was raised in an affluent home, but as a young man, I traveled to an embattled Third World country because I wanted to … Continue reading

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The tarnished halo of Rob Ferguson

March 12, 2017 Washington Attorney General Bob Ferguson is exulting in his successful court challenge to President Trump’s immigration ban. Ferguson obviously cares about immigrant rights, but has he been as diligent in protecting people who already live here? What … Continue reading

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Beyond the Pale: A neighbor’s view of the Ballard Locks homeless camp

March 10, 2017 The Ballard Locks (also known as Hiram M. Chittenden Locks) are a system of mechanically controlled channels that allow watercraft to travel between the inland waterways of Seattle (Lake Washington, Lake Union, the Ship Canal) and Puget … Continue reading

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Hello this is my daughter…

March 6, 2017 Seen in a Portland shop window in August 2017. It may have been there for some time, given the reference to winter clothes: HOMELESS IN DWNTWN PORTLAND Please help my ill daughter Hello this is my daughter … Continue reading

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Brandie Bright and Dark

February 13, 2017 Oh the irony! Seems that one of the ACLU’s two homeless plaintiffs – a woman who is crying foul over City crews removing her stuff from public land without due notice – is apparently quite the little thief … Continue reading

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ACLU vs. the People

*** TBQ Readers, your help is needed. Please read to the end to find out how you can help make us all safer. *** We were cautiously optimistic when we learned that the Mayor was moving ahead to clear dangerous … Continue reading

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The Great Enablers

January 12, 2017 Quick: What do you call a Detox Center, without the “De-” part? You’d call it a Tox Center, of course. And that’s just what it would be: a place where addicts could keep poisoning their bodies, free … Continue reading

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Ballard Bridge Status: 1/10/2017

The Ballard Bridge spans Salmon Bay to connect Seattle’s historic Ballard neighborhood with points south. The bridge and surrounding environs have been a long-term site of homeless camps at both ends. These camps, particularly the one on the north end, … Continue reading

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The Hidden Persuaders

Dedicated to Larry Kaminsky December 27, 2016 Even as Seattle voters enact a flurry of laws designed to “get money out of politics,” the insinuation of paid political advocates into local government continues apace. This article looks at how that works … Continue reading

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C is for Vengeance: A blogger and politician team up to punish critics

December 21, 2016 Have you ever written an angry letter or e-mail to a government official? Most of us have at one time or other. God knows I have. But did you ever think, when you dropped that letter in … Continue reading

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Audit This! ~ Bringing Seattle’s Human Services Department to heel

December 7, 2016 The Seattle Human Services Department (HSD) dispenses city, state, and federal money to a hundred-odd contractors that provide various services to Seattle’s poor and homeless. HSD has regulations requiring the contractors to track and submit financial tracking … Continue reading

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Childhood’s End: Rape at a homeless camp

November 3, 2016 Warning: Disturbing content. Narrative In late 2012, a just-turned-16-year-old girl whom I’ll call Angel was staying at the Nickelsville homeless camp in Seattle’s Highland Park neighborhood, along with her mother and two younger siblings. One evening, she … Continue reading

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Tunnel? What Tunnel?

October 28, 2016 A friend whom I’ll call Sally is into good government. Like me, Sally is bafffled by the unending Tragedy of Errors that is Seattle’s Deep Bore Tunnel (aka the Alaskan Way Replacement Project). Sally recently sent a … Continue reading

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What’s the matter with Kshama Sawant?

October 21, 2016 Meet Kshama Sawant: Seattle councilmember. Socialist firebrand. Enfant terrible. For as big a hit as she’s been in Seattle, I’ve never felt that she really got this town. Oh she gets a part of it, all right. … Continue reading

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Seattle Shelter Contracts

October 18, 2016 – The document below is a summary report of Seattle’s homeless shelter and outreach contract payments for 2015. It was sent to me by one of my readers (Thanks, Deena!) who got it from Seattle’s Human Services Department (HSD) … Continue reading

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Risky Business: Is Seattle’s Encampment Bill un-Constitutional?

October 7, 2016 A hot mess gets hotter In each of the past several years, ever greater numbers of homeless people have been camping out on publicly owned land in Seattle. Conditions around the encampment areas have steadily deteriorated, and … Continue reading

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Ask the Experts

September 24, 2016 Seattle’s Task Force on Homeless Encampment Clean-up had one of its weekly meeings at City Hall Wednesday. I attended at the invitation of a friend who’s on the task force. It was not encouraging. But it was … Continue reading

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Anatomy of a Swindle: How a Rogue Non-profit Captured the Emerald City

September 13, 2016 The Set-up For four years I’ve been investigating a publicly supported non-profit homeless group in Seattle called SHARE. SHARE runs 14 indoor shelters around Seattle, for which it annually gets several hundred thousand dollars from Seattle’s Human … Continue reading

Posted in Crime, General, Homelessness, Media, Nickelsville, SHARE, Tent City | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 40 Comments

Tell the whole story please, Mr. B

September 5, 2016 On August 24, the Seattle Times ran a piece by columnist Daniel Beekman about the struggle between Mayor Murray and the city council over homeless folks collecting in hot spots around the city. In this post, I look at one … Continue reading

Posted in General, Homelessness, Media, Photos (Stuff), Politics, Squatters, Tent City | Tagged , , , , , | 2 Comments

Why I’m voting ‘no’ on the Housing Levy

July 29, 2016 Seattle Proposition 1 is a tax levy on the August 2016 primary ballot for Seattle voters. The levy would double the total amount currently levied for “affordable housing.” See the King County Voter’s Guide description on this … Continue reading

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The True Cost of Eco-Babble

Someone chucked an empty FIJI water bottle in my yard this morning. Before recycling it, I took a minute to read the label. The packaging is clearly targeted at the “green” demographic. Can you see how? The wording wraps around … Continue reading

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Rest Easy, Devin

At 2 AM on April 7, 2016 an unknown 16-year-old was whizzing downhill on Highland Park Way SW in a stolen car. The cops were on his tail. The odds were not in the kid’s favor, but he may have figured: What have … Continue reading

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