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Mon, Jun 13, 2011, 1:44 am // Ham Hayes
The Whatcom County Executive race is very interesting. Whatever opinion you may have about the past performance of Pete Kremen no longer matters. It is a horse race and no one knows the outcome. Good times for political junkies and commentators, right?
But voters are going to be challenged to sort through the offerings. There appear to be two huge issues, the environmental impact of the Gateway Terminal operations (say coal train if you wish) and jobs. Will maintaining our quality of life win, or will rebuilding our depleted economy win? Underlying these issues is an ideological debate as well, conservative values versus liberal values. And if that doesn't add to our present divisiveness, then let's add urban versus rural interests to the mix.
I think ultimately we are going to have to come up with a well engineered solution, both politically and technically. I don't know what that looks like myself, but I'm going to vote for the person who appears to have the balanced perspective, experience, and wisdom to offer that well engineered solution. Ideological palaver needs to be set aside. Unfortunately, I expect we will see a lot of that palaver, if not from the candidates, then from other sources. And I'm not minimizing the severity or importance of the environmental issues or the economic ones. It is just that no one group or special interest has enough clout to subdue the other, hence expect pitched emotional battles. And I say this knowing that local elected officials and we citizens have no outright vote on the Terminal. We are and will continue to be challenged to bring about the best solution without benefit of the ballot box. As such, we need leaders who can lead based on their ability to articulate and influence ideas, policies, and decisions without their "normal" tools.
We are very fortunate to have four quality thoroughbreds in this race. I hope there are many opportunities to hear their ideas and for voters to ask them questions. We need an active media, active volunteers to put on debates, and a willingness of the candidates to debate each other. My hopes may be higher than my expectations at this point, but I will look askance at candidates who run from the challenge of exchanging ideas in public.
To be honest, I do have a favorite, Tom Anderson. What I said about debates still goes, especially for the benefit of undecided voters. But I like the cut of the man. Tom has a wealth of experience managing complex government and business issues from his 16-year stint as a public utilities district director. He is also way ahead on the future prospects and problems of energy supply for our region. Most important to me, he is known for his integrity and willingness to work with people who are on different sides of issues. I think Tom will stand tall and he's my man.
So the gates are open. They are off and running! May the best one win.
Mon, Jun 13, 2011, 1:44 am // Ham HayesThe Whatcom County Executive race
7 comments; last on Jul 22, 2011
Tue, Dec 21, 2010, 12:21 pm // Ham HayesClouds or not, the eclipse was there
1 comments; last on Dec 21, 2010
Paper Dreams in Fairhaven
Tue, Dec 07, 2010, 3:37 pm // Ham HayesA moment to be grateful.
Mon, Nov 15, 2010, 5:17 pm // Ham HayesThe next round of invasive security procedures is not too far away.
2 comments; last on Nov 19, 2010
Tue, Nov 09, 2010, 2:17 pm // Ham HayesA Hidden Bellingham Gem
Sun, Oct 17, 2010, 6:01 am // Ham HayesTsunami Alert - Election Predictions
Wed, Aug 11, 2010, 5:00 pm // Ham HayesFear and attack-rhetoric are leading us in the wrong direction.
1 comments; last on Aug 12, 2010
Mon, Aug 09, 2010, 2:49 pm // Ham HayesCandidates, o candidates - where art thou? Monday Updates
2 comments; last on Aug 04, 2010
Fri, Aug 06, 2010, 5:54 am // Ham HayesTom answers our questions
1 comments; last on Aug 08, 2010
Fri, Aug 06, 2010, 5:50 am // Ham HayesJeff answers our questions
Fri, Aug 06, 2010, 5:48 am // Ham HayesChuck answers our questions
Wed, Jul 28, 2010, 5:39 am // Ham HayesIt is time we gave “mud” back its good name.
Wed, Jul 21, 2010, 5:42 am // Ham Hayes“We have lots of robberies.” As I reported last week, that was the apocalyptic statement by the investigating officer to our recent plight in St. Petersburg.
Wed, Jul 14, 2010, 6:17 pm // Ham HayesHam's final post on his travel comments from Russia.
Wed, Jun 16, 2010, 5:56 am // Ham HayesOur society is out of its mind. Well, maybe not quite completely, but it needs to be.
Wed, Jun 09, 2010, 9:35 pm // Ham HayesSuccess often comes in small steps spread over time. A recent article from the local Seattle office of the FBI underscores one of those moments, “SEX TRAFFICKING CONVICTIONS,…
Wed, Jun 02, 2010, 5:22 am // Ham HayesThe unfolding story through time and space in France
3 comments; last on May 19, 2010
Wed, May 05, 2010, 5:24 am // Ham HayesHam is preparing for another fun filled trip by air.
1 comments; last on May 05, 2010
Wed, Apr 28, 2010, 5:54 am // Ham HayesMandatory voting - Worth it, or too high a price ?
3 comments; last on Jun 09, 2010
Wed, Apr 21, 2010, 11:20 am // Ham HayesOver-the-top cleric blames women for earthquakes.
Wed, Apr 14, 2010, 5:58 am // Ham HayesProcrastination, thy name is Self
Wed, Apr 07, 2010, 5:58 am // Ham HayesThe Tea Party reflects a major shift in citizen political participation.
7 comments; last on Apr 14, 2010
Wed, Mar 31, 2010, 5:59 am // Ham HayesSandhill Cranes: the Columbia River Basin's swallows of Capistrano
Wed, Mar 24, 2010, 5:48 am // Ham HayesFrom the earliest known writings of humanity, we hear the voices of distressed peoples.
2 comments; last on Mar 29, 2010
Sun, Mar 21, 2010, 5:45 am // Ham HayesIf you are going to visit the heron nesting area at Post Point Lagoon in the near future, you are in for a pleasant surprise.
Wed, Mar 17, 2010, 5:59 am // Ham HayesPublic approval of Congress continues to slide and for good reason.
Wed, Mar 10, 2010, 5:49 am // Ham HayesHow we, the public, choose to respond to growing polarization in our society is crucial.
1 comments; last on Mar 10, 2010
Wed, Mar 03, 2010, 6:00 am // Ham HayesEnough has been revealed, written and said about “Climate-gate” for me to be alarmed.
7 comments; last on Mar 07, 2010
Wed, Feb 24, 2010, 6:00 am // Ham HayesHockey night in Canada may be replaced.
2 comments; last on Feb 25, 2010
Wed, Feb 17, 2010, 6:00 am // Ham HayesLeaders in government need to rethink their approach.
Wed, Feb 10, 2010, 5:59 am // Ham HayesUnlike other species, we need more than basic survival strategies.
1 comments; last on Feb 11, 2010
Wed, Feb 03, 2010, 6:00 am // Ham HayesHam is vacationing in Costa Rica. He sends us his observations.
Wed, Jan 27, 2010, 5:59 am // Ham HayesIssues are no longer relevant when secrecy is the name of the game.
1 comments; last on Jan 27, 2010
Wed, Jan 20, 2010, 6:00 am // Ham HayesThe earthquake in Haiti is a new reminder that we must also be prepared.
Wed, Jan 13, 2010, 5:59 am // Ham HayesWhat will New York's proposed salt reduction laws do for us?
Wed, Jan 06, 2010, 5:59 am // Ham HayesThe screening of several million airline passengers a day is a huge task--and not being very well done.
2 comments; last on Jan 09, 2010
Wed, Dec 30, 2009, 8:00 am // Ham HayesPaul Krugman of the New York Times calls the now departing decade, “Decade Zero.” My wife and I are traveling this week to visit three of our six…
1 comments; last on Dec 30, 2009
Wed, Dec 23, 2009, 8:00 am // Ham HayesI recently heard Nicholas Kristof speak on the oppression of women and girls around the world. He and his wife, Sheryl WuDunn, have just published a brilliant book,…
Wed, Dec 16, 2009, 8:00 am // Ham HayesIt’s the Season. As a country and a society we come from many diverse cultures and belief systems. And few other countries in the world protect the right…
Wed, Dec 09, 2009, 8:00 am // Ham HayesMost companies depend on customer satisfaction to stay in business. If our U.S. Congress were a company, it would be in deep trouble on that count. Few would…
10 comments; last on Dec 12, 2009
Wed, Dec 02, 2009, 8:00 am // Ham HayesA news article appeared just before Thanksgiving on banning land mines. The Obama administration has decided not to sign the Mine Ban Treaty after recently completing a policy…
1 comments; last on Dec 02, 2009
Wed, Nov 25, 2009, 8:00 am // Ham Hayes
I’ve been to Los Angeles many times. I even remember the Red and Yellow electric street cars that served the city from after World War II until…
Wed, Nov 11, 2009, 8:00 am // Ham HayesWe certainly do need healthcare reform. The “debate” in the House has been a fascinating and conflicting mix of ideology, political power, idealism, facts, pragmatism and occasiona
21 comments; last on Nov 14, 2009
Wed, Nov 04, 2009, 8:00 am // Ham HayesFew of us advocate for the suppression of the human spirit. In fact we would be shocked if others characterized us as miserly, mean spirited or oppressive.…
1 comments; last on Nov 04, 2009
Wed, Oct 28, 2009, 8:00 am // Ham HayesWe are looking at the all but certain demise of printed newspapers, and the conversion of TV and cable news into entertainment. Our last, best hope for getting…
Wed, Oct 21, 2009, 8:00 am // Ham HayesCompassion: We get it, and then we don’t get it. Merriam-Webster defines compassion as the “sympathetic consciousness of others' distress together with a desire to alleviate it.
Wed, Oct 14, 2009, 8:00 am // Ham HayesIt is time to change the guard at the Port Commission. Our two incumbents running for re-election just don’t get it. Commissioners Walker and Smith have been in…
1 comments; last on Oct 16, 2009
Wed, Oct 07, 2009, 8:00 am // Ham HayesHealthcare and other socio-political dueling monologues are beginning to wear thin. Not because the topics aren’t worthy of our consideration. Far from it. What is discouraging is how
3 comments; last on Oct 29, 2009
Wed, Sep 30, 2009, 8:00 am // Ham HayesOne good way to better understand our society and culture is to visit another country. Many questions and a little bit of trepidation can arise before and during…
Wed, Sep 09, 2009, 9:00 am // Ham HayesYou know you’ve failed when your action of last resort is to attack. Attacking is, in fact, a defensive response to the inability to persuade others to a…
Wed, Sep 02, 2009, 8:00 am // Ham HayesThere is a sense that in recent years our political and social discourses have become meaner. Our political system is increasingly seen as being more about gaining or…
2 comments; last on Sep 07, 2009
Wed, Aug 26, 2009, 8:00 am // Ham HayesThe challenger for the Port Commissioner District 1 seat, John Blethen, has an uphill race ahead of him.
John is certainly to be congratulated for an excellent…
1 comments; last on Aug 26, 2009
Fri, Apr 24, 2009, 1:25 am // Ham HayesPosted Thursday, April 23, 11:25 pm
This last Wednesday I reported my observations of the Monday, April 20 joint Port-City Council meeting. I expressed my concern that some council…
7 comments; last on Apr 24, 2009
Tue, Feb 03, 2009, 12:54 pm // Ham HayesTax cheats, lobbyists and crooks
Lined up at your door.
Struggle, struggle, cook the books
How ya gonna get off the floor
Come on Prez
Toss the bums out
Clean up this mess
4 comments; last on Feb 05, 2009
Sat, Jan 10, 2009, 11:08 am // Ham HayesThere is a lot of grit and fortitude on Bellingham's streets this winter. Not the grit deposited by COB sanders, but the dedicated bicyclists who ride in rain…
Fri, Dec 19, 2008, 12:22 pm // Ham HayesYou probably can't be anymore politically incorrect than this. I would like to thank ALL of our elected officials for their efforts this year. I know, I…
2 comments; last on Dec 22, 2008
Tue, Nov 11, 2008, 11:14 am // Ham HayesOK, citizen readers...what's going on here? Are we witnessing a new war, right here in our backyard? It would appear so, and of course, we citizens are funding…
2 comments; last on Nov 11, 2008
Tue, Aug 19, 2008, 11:03 am // Ham HayesObama's campaign may have reached its zenith. The emerging story about his position on partial and live-birth abortion could be the unraveling of his reach for history. A…
12 comments; last on Aug 31, 2008
Thu, Jul 17, 2008, 6:11 pm // Ham HayesAt the Port of Bellingham meeting this week, the Commissioners voted to sue the City over failure to resolve a water connection issue at the airport. It would…
7 comments; last on Jul 18, 2008
Mon, Jun 09, 2008, 10:52 am // Ham HayesI had to travel a long way to become mindful of the importance of math. Not calculus nor trig nor geometry….just math. With grandkids in tow this week,…
3 comments; last on Jun 10, 2008
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