by Robert Herold & r & & r & Clarification & r & In last week's story, "The Final Act?", we incorrectly wrote that Karen Mobley of the Spokane Arts Commission was the city's point person to guide film production companies through the permit process. It is Suzanne Croft. Also last week, we incorrectly cited Idaho state representative George Sayler's party affiliation ("Bush v. Idaho"). Sayler is a Democrat -- the only one of his kind in the state Legislature from North Idaho.
Got a Nice Bing To It & r & In regard to William Stimson's guest editorial on naming the Met the Bing Crosby
Theatre ("Crosby Theater?", 3/23/06): I read Stimson's guest editorial with interest. Renaming the existing Met Theater after Bing Crosby is worth considering. It may even be a great idea.
My goal in purchasing the theatre one and a half years ago was to preserve this special entertainment house for the Spokane community. Not only is the theatre a great facility, it is a grand showcase of the history and memories that have built Spokane and the region.
Should a dedicated group of individuals decide to take on this naming project, I will be happy to give my blessing.
Mitch Silver & r & Spokane, Wash.
Caution: Men at Work & R & I am writing concerning the 2004 Spokane Street Bond Program. There are a number of misconceptions the commission would like to clarify concerning this program. The street commission is a volunteer citizen advisory body and has been charged with carefully overseeing the bond expenditures and rebuilding our city streets correctly. All of the members of the CSAC take this responsibility seriously.
Some people in the community continue to believe that the 2004 street bond program should also include spending for the very broad and unfunded goals of the comprehensive plan, as it relates to pedestrian safety, bike lanes and traffic calming. As much as we would all like to have more money for these amenities, this bond program was not approved for such expenses. I was a member of the original group, including the mayor and key city staff, which held seven public meetings before the street bond went to the voters. During those meetings, the citizens clearly and repeatedly told us that the money should be spent exclusively on road rehabilitation. The very purpose of the commission, which was created as part of the ordinance approved by the City Council, is to be accountable to the public and to ensure that the bond fund expenditures are restricted to pavement replacement. We strongly believe that we are doing what the voters have asked us to do, which is to fix our streets.
There are several street bond projects underway for 2006, including the reconstruction of 29th Avenue, from Grand to Southeast Boulevard. There will be a $5,000-a-day early-completion incentive for this project, which was approved by the commission on the advice of Engineering Services staff. This incentive is designed to reduce the number of days that our only major east-west arterial on the South Hill remains under construction, and will save construction costs for the project. Such incentives are a commonly used tool, which serves the public interest and will help minimize the impact to our local businesses.
Regardless of pressure by some people to do otherwise, the Citizen Streets Advisory Commission believes that we are correct to concentrate on what we have been charged to do. We will work to see that the city of Spokane rebuilds our streets properly and watch the taxpayers dollars carefully. We believe that we are on track and are very pleased to see many of our roads finally and properly rebuilt. Please go to www.spokanestreets.org to see the details and the current projects.
Dallas Hawkins & r & Chairman, Citizen Streets Advisory Commission & r & Spokane, Wash.
King of Tolerance & r & I wanted to comment about the article Joel Smith wrote in the March 23 issue. I usually enjoy The Inlander and have for years. I do not agree with the political views, but I like to hear others' opinions and feel it is important that we all have a chance to share our point of view.
I feel his remarks about the "best reason to keep driving once you hit
Spokane" is a view that I disagree with. If we really want to celebrate diversity, then let's do that. I'm sure there are plenty of people who like the mural. Just because you don't understand somebody's beliefs doesn't give anyone the right to belittle them.
I'll still read your magazine and believe Joel Smith is a good writer. Hope he can come to look at the mural with a sense of curiosity instead of dislike.
Susan Piccinini & r & Athol, Idaho
King of Gory & r & Thank you for letting your readers in on the history of that painting of a monster on the backside of the St. Claire Apartments ("Best Reason To Keep Driving Once You Hit Spokane," 3/23/06). I've wondered about that picture for a long time. Its nature and source now make perfect sense to me.
As most art lovers know, we project out into the world that which is inside ourselves, and that picture on the backside of a building like a demented tattoo reveals to the astute observer the true nature of much of the inside of Christianity. After all, that religion also created the hypothesis of Satan and projects that imaginary being into the world, too, and onto many an innocent person. Projecting that master of sin everywhere, they fearfully loose chaos and mayhem on the world. It's why George Bush had no trouble illegally invading a sovereign nation, spreading further murder and madness on the globe. When you've got that monster inside of you, hounding you, coloring your view of the world, you are not likely to be a man of peace.
I think it behooves us all to realize when we look at that picture that it accurately portrays the inside of many a Christian, a secret self hidden beneath the uneasy smiles they present to the world where they imagine sin and degradation everywhere. It's the monster inside of them, loosed visibly into the world.
George Thomas & r & Spokane, Wash.
The Spotted Owl Speaks & r & One of the hazards of making impromptu remarks to a reporter is suffering regrets of ill-chosen words, such as characterizing conservative transplants as "noxious weeds" ("Best Endangered Species," 3/23/06). These folks with negative views on social and environmental issues are more like "worrisome weeds" in the garden, cultivated to produce a harvest of progressive activity.
As I intended (but apparently failed) to inform Kevin Taylor, there is an equally important factor in the Rs taking over North Idaho. As well chronicled in George Lakoff's book Don't Think Like an Elephant, after Goldwater's defeat in 1964, the Rs initiated a well-financed and -organized campaign to take over the country. Generously funded think tanks and consultants with easy access to the media "framed" clever messages to persuade vulnerable voters that the Ds are responsible for all the ills of America, including the practice (loathsome to Rs) of taxing to pay for spending.
Rescinding "The Fairness Doctrine" under Reagan -- requiring equal broadcast time for partisan political commentary -- opened the door for Rush Limbaugh's manipulation of the easy ones. These combined efforts culminated in the Rs' huge gains across the country in 1994.
So, although the influx of conservatives played a role in the decline in the Ds' fortunes, that's not the whole story.