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DO NOT PRESUME THAT ELECTED OFFICIALS KNOW WHAT THEY ARE DOING

THEY DO NOT

Our elected officials are by definition popular. They won their elections. People believe in them. Otherwise they would not have voted for them.

However, popularity is not proof of complete competence.

Generally speaking, elected officials are experts at assembling a majority, climbing to the top of their party summit, raising money, running polls and adjusting strategy to say what the majority would like to hear.

Let’s talk about Governor Jay Insee. He is personable. He is photogenic. He has written a credible book. He has been an elected official at all levels. He knows all the important characters in the Democratic Party. He is a unifier.

He is capable of holding the governorship and keeping it out of the hands of the Republicans, which many would say is enough in itself. Given that the Republicans control the Senate, they can pretty much veto anything progressive he might want to accomplish. So it is a stalemate. At least Washington does not have to deal with a backward thinking Michigan Governor Rick Snider or a Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker.

Jay inslee is competent in the sense that he can keep things going as they are. But is that enough? Definitely. He lacks the vision we need in a governor. He lacks the knowledge we need in a governor. He is too reliant on the corporatist advisers who surround and “run him”.

Let’s take the traffic congestion issue. Radical structural change is needed. His solution for I-405 is elimination of choke points. That will take decades, and after today’s choke points are eliminated, new choke points will develop. We need a comprehensive transit system instead of the fragmented, disconnected transit system we have, one which does not pick us up where we are and which does not deliver us all the way to our destination. We need to supplement regional buses and light rail with flex vans which would link all the disconnected pieces of our transit system together. If we did that, people could leave their cars at home and not fill up the roads and freeways with single occupancy vehicles.

 

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