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Shoot Yourself in the Foot Day -- If you're reading this on Thursday, it might not be too late. Anti-war protesters are calling for a nationwide ban on consumer spending on Inauguration Day, Jan. 20. The mass e-mail movement, dubbed "Not One Damn Dime Day," urges Americans to send a message to the president and all the political leaders who "don't have the moral courage to oppose" the Iraq War by not spending a dime on anything and, hopefully, "shut[ting] the retail economy down."

So drop that pair of shoes, Jimmy. Hands off that carton of eggs, Laurie. Do your part. Help cripple Spokane's retail economy. It's your duty as a progressive American. We'll teach Bush and all of his retail business-owning friends a lesson or two. Hyah!

Big Ideas on the Web -- While we've been busy cranking out this week's cover story on Big Ideas for the Inland Northwest, an eerily familiar discussion has been lighting up the Rant and Rave board over at Spokane's new craigslist site. Posters there have been jawing back and forth for days about the relative merits of the bike-friendly city, about what kinds of businesses might jump-start Spokane's creative scene and how to build this city into a livelier, more vibrant place. Check it out and join in the discussion. We're all in this together.

Bouncing Back? -- After three straight years of tough times, maybe Washington is finally turning around. According to the Employment Security Department, more than 60,000 jobs were gained in 2004 (from December 2003 through December 2004). That's the biggest jump since 1998. Washington has now seen five straight quarters of job growth, which might partially vindicate Chris Gregoire, who, as a candidate, said Washington's economy wasn't as bad as Dino Rossi was making it out to be.

Publication date: 1/20/04

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