63 Replies to “Sunday open thread: DMUs”

  1. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Budd_Rail_Diesel_Car

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Michigan_Central_Railroad

    The red line from the bottom to the top of the mitten also known as Michigan’s Lower Penninsula – look in the freight door at the front of your coach, and see either a tractor motor or a hunting trophy. Ticket-holder, red plaid wool coat and rifle.

    Tough railcar, perfect for its use and it’s time-period in history, ending maybe mid 1960’s. For our use, circa 2020, if I had to ride a few feet over a train motor, I’d as soon it be electric.

    However, since this is Open Thread for 5/31/2020…..have we got any solid first-hand observations as to how transit came through yesterday’s events for the Sound Transit service area?

    Mark Dublin

    1. I did my duty as a journalist and managed to be on what was likely one of the most crowded Link trains of the day. It was around the time the curfew took effect, which I only found out about from word passing around in the crowd.

      I’d say load factor was ca. 1.0 (as many passengers as there were seats), but lots of people were standing and nearly everyone was wearing a mask. It was about 10 minutes from when I got down to the platform to when the train came, but most of the passengers were already down there when I got there.

      The passengers getting off the train at BHS waited patiently through several elevator cycles so as not to crowd the elevator.

      When my 60 came, it had the “full” sign on, but it had to stop to let off a few passengers, so those waiting got to board.

      Going downtown a few hours earlier, there were about a dozen passengers on my 132 (an artic). I witnessed one of my pet peeves: The one passenger who got on board decided to sit directly behind another passenger. Maybe not everyone has heard how they are supposed to behave in a pandemic, but he had other options for where to sit besides one where he got to breathe directly onto someone else’s neck for 20 minutes.

      Yeah, the crowds closest to the police line were mostly not practicing social distancing at all, but they were making a choice to prioritize one pandemic over another.

      1. Thanks for this comment, Brent, in addition to just being there. This is very important. I always considered my bus PA mike as much a part of my coach equipment as my steering wheel. As should every driver as a condition of keeping their job.

        So I personally would’ve had no trouble politely explaining that for safety’s sake, passengers should not sit where their breath would pose the least danger to someone sitting in front of them. Probably more as a general statement than an accusation.

        Though would’ve been a lot better to have enough personnel uniformed more like Passenger Assistance than police either stationed aboard or around the system, to make sure everybody gets the word.

        Anybody driving: is this pretty much like being the one to decide Essentiality? Appreciate the journalism. Any observations and consequences witnessed, please keep us filled in.

        Mark Dublin

      2. The crowd I was reporting on was at University District Station. Sorry I forgot to mention that.

    2. Mark
      We moved 3 years ago (family reasons) from Capitol Hill to the crook of the thumb and mitten – Bay City (the place put on the map by Madonna and the point of the Bay City Rollers’ dart). Lake State Railway runs close by our house with at least two trains a day (one is a BNSF unit coal train). Love the diesel horns even at oh dark thirty. Thanks for the link to Michigan Central’s history.
      BTW Ford’s restoration of the Michigan Central Station in Detroit is major — too bad Amtrak can’t move back (or maybe they will…there has been talk).

  2. Is it the city’s policy that all large-scale demonstrations should occur in downtown Seattle at Westlake? Or is it the organizer’s decision to hold the demonstrations in downtown. Either way, it’s time to re-think having demonstrations in the downtown Seattle in the retail core. Whether they are there because it’s more convenient for SPD to monitor the activities or because the organizers are leveraging the transit options, hoping to boost crowd size, it’s time to move peaceful demonstrations out of the soul-less corporate core of downtown Seattle.

    If yesterday’s demonstrations had been planned as a march from Franklin HS to Garfield HS, I would have been there. Or any other location not in downtown Seattle, I would have been there. But the chaos that ensued yesterday was completely predictable, (although not to the degree that occurred). Whether it’s city policy or the desire of the organizers, here’s a LESSON LEARNED: Westlake is not the place to hold peaceful demonstrations.

    1. I don’t follow why holding the protests somewhere else would make the chaos any less. It would have just shifted it to somewhere else.

      1. I suppose there would be fewer targets. Downtown you have banks, government buildings, corporate headquarters. A gold mine for an anarchist.

    2. 1) More transit routes connect downtown than to anywhere else in the state, by far.

      2) Much of the property damage in Minnesota has been on family-owned/African-American-owned businesses. The 23rd Ave corridor does not need the treatment the neighborhood around where George Floyd was murdered has gotten.

      3) Garfield High School has very limited transit access.

      I don’t know what the organizers of the various marches were thinking, but matters have evolved quickly this week, and been chaotic. The property damagers have long been planning to take advantage of an opportunity like this, from what I could see of their tactics.

      Who knew that less than six days after a man who wasn’t resisting arrest and choked out by a police officer with a long record as a killer cop who had never been indicted, large protests would be happening in every major city in the US and several in Europe, even in the midst of a pandemic where people know they are supposed to be social-distancing?

    3. Protests should have a purpose to be successful, and that purpose should include actually locating the protest in front of the entity being protested. A police headquarters or a business owned by a white supremecist/ terrorist supporter would be conceptual sites for protesting what awful and mean thing happened this past week, for example.

      Just announcing an assembly location just because it’s convenient (without much thought about messaging) is essentially saying “we just want to encourage a general street riot” to the most deranged and destructive people in our City that feel compelled to riot and loot. Those people actually include some white supremecists/ terrorists.

      It seems to me that the most appropriate response would have been to host a “vigil” rather than a “protest” this week — and reserve the protesting to a time when it’s clearer what action needs to be taken.

      1. If Martin Luther King Jr had followed all the what-you-people-should-do advice he got, he would never have marched on Selma or in Chicago.

        If Rosa Parks had followed the advice about the appropriate way to protest, she would have been standing and holding a sign in the back of the bus as some middle-aged white person claimed her seat.

        If Colin Kaepernick had followed all the advice heaped on him, he would never have protested at all. He at least followed the advice that taking a knee was more respectful than sitting during the national anthem. I’ll let Shannon Sharpe (who is African American) ‘splain to Skip Bayless (who is white) what Skip should have done.

      2. MLK, Rosa Parks and Colin Kaepernick all identified and messaged what charges were needed, and promoted organized protesting in non-violent and targeted ways.

        Please don’t confuse them with a random looter that’s angry and enjoys destroying property. It’s an insult to their spirit.

        Specifically, the Chicago riots in 1968 were a result of the MLK assassination and not of his own organizing for protests.

      3. “I agree with X that protesters did, but Y is going to far.” But then you argued that the protesters shouldn’t even do X. Are you volunteering to help organize X on your timeline, or even W?

        I’m no advocate of violence, but you might want to review the history of how the Fair Housing Act got passed.

      4. I just heard an interview with Kampala Harris explaining how a new simple change in the standard of police use of deadly force was changed from “reasonable” to “necessary” and would affect the systemic reform on police brutality that is needed because all guidance and practice would change in every department in the country. Taking this one cause to the streets would be a much more effective “protest” outcome than being merely angry.

      5. I’m pretty sure the protest organizers have a legislative agenda. That may be part of it. I don’t know. Neither you nor I are experts on criminal justice. Some of the organizers probably are.

    4. The entire point of the protests is to protest in the soulless corporate core. Since the police care more about corporations than about black lives (in this specific example), doing so is seen as taking the fight to the belly of the beast.

      1. A Joy, the point you’re raising really calls for an answer from someone who’s ever been an officer on the winning side of an actual war of liberation.

        A situation where, for the sake of your own cause, in addition to your lives, you and your troops have to consider yourselves responsible for everything that happens to anybody else in the zone under your control.

        International rules of engagement may even require it. Since your enemies can certainly afford to replace damaged property, it’s plus-points for them to have you on camera breaking things. “Provocateur” is a job title, very much in demand for these occasions.

        Also. What Colin Kapernick really needs is for somebody knowing any history at all to point out the none of the pontificating scolding around the Flag has zip! to back it up.

        “I pledge allegiance to my Flag and to the Republic for which it stands, one nation, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all!”

        Reverend Francis Bellamy was a Socialist, who deliberately left the country’s name open because he considered the oath a gift to the world’s EVERY republic!

        “Under God” came from…. CONGRESS. Who’d based on God’s Will and its Proven Consequences are looking at some serious Liability for taking His Name in Vain!

        And not only does “Taking A Knee” signify no disrespect whatever, but in conditions where action requires caution, the meaning it carries across the board is: “Let’s take a minute and think about this!”

        Us Liberals’ Longtime Lamest is our decades-old right-ward gift of The Boston Tea Party. Which was not about Government spending, but Taxation Without Representation. Left lying there for decades waiting for us to enlist The Second Amendment to be sure that if it wants a penny more of their taxes, residents of Washington DC had better get to vote.

        Word to the Schools: Leave calculus to Community College and don’t let anybody out of Twelfth Grade without HISTORY!

        Mark Dublin

      2. The point of a demonstration is to give voice and visibility to people whose message may be unpopular or underrepresented. I don’t know how many people turned out yesterday to peacefully show their opposition to police brutality and stand up for human dignity and respect. Their message was overwhelmed by the actions of a few hundred anarchists and greedy individuals who came to loot and riot.

        If it’s the city’s policy to confine demonstrations to the Westlake area, then it’s time to re-think their policy. The people who wanted to hijack yesterday’s events for their own selfish interests certainly managed to outsmart the city and the police. The only people who are looking at yesterday as a success are the anarchists and looters.

        If the protest organizers chose Westlake because of the corporate backdrops, then it’s time for a new approach. We’ve seen protest after protest in downtown Seattle. But still the violence continues. I doubt that anyone who is truly motivated to change the status quo is going to be deterred by the need to navigate between Mt. Baker Station and the Central District.

        If yesterday’s demonstrations had occurred outside of downtown, would the anarchists have wanted to disrupt the events? There’s not a lot of corporate greed visible on 23rd or MLK that could serve as a target and the marchers themselves certainly would discourage graffiti and vandalism in family neighborhoods (if we believe in Jane Jacobs). The optics of a large, peaceful demonstration marching through Seattle streets would have also provided encouragement and solace to people whose hearts are hurting. Instead we saw the violence in Minneapolis bringing violence to the streets of Seattle.

      3. The first protests of George Floyd’s murder were in the neighborhood where he was murdered. It took the troublemakers a couple nights to prepare and do their thing.

        The only productive response I have seen by police faced with these protests was to join the protests.

      4. “The only people who are looking at yesterday as a success are the anarchists and looters.”

        Are you certain of this? Have you asked any POC NPOs if they thought yesterday’s protests were a success? Any of the peaceful livestreamers? What’s your sample size here?

      5. “The only people who are looking at yesterday as a success are the anarchists and looters.”

        I heard Carmin Best on the radio today and she definitely considered their response a success. Not A+ but compared to what’s happened in other cities and the no win situation I have to back her. SPD used the minimum amount of force necessary to achieve necessary results. Broken windows can be fixed. Burned cars replaced. Nobody lost their life and many of the ne’er-do-wells were arrested. Overall we’ve seen worse on May Day stunts.

        I question the wisdom of publicly announcing that National Guard troops will be sent out unarmed and surprised their commanding officer would allow it. If you need their help then you’ve lost control and should no longer be calling the shots (figuratively and literally). I am old enough to remember Kent State and we don’t want that. But if you call out the Guard then you should accept they are trained and will work as partners and not gofers.

    5. Westlake Park was built as a central plaza for the city, which previously didn’t have a well-defined center or large gathering place downtown. That’s one of the core features of a well-designed city: a plaza for people to linger in at ordinary times, and for occasional speeches, outdoor concerts, and demonstrations. All the largest parades and demonstrations occur around Westlake Park and along Fourth Avenue. The city’s policy has been to channel those to Fourth Avenue rather than to elsewhere between First and Seventh. But the city doesn’t need to channel them to downtown; that’s where any “Seattle” protest will naturally be. For photo optics at minimum. A picture of a Seattle demonstration is most effective if the background shows the department stores, monorail, and/or Pike Place Market sign to show that it’s really in Seattle, and something out-of-towners will recognize.

      The interaction between peaceful and violent protests follow a predictable pattern. The peaceful demonstrators, union members, and civic leaders go first. Once they presented the mayor with a cake as an ironic gesture of ostensible respect. After a few hours the union members start to go home and a more violent group takes their place. Year after year since WTO, the peaceful protesters hold a demonstration midday and express their dissatisfaction with some policy or another. And then the violent protesters come in and basically egg the police to arrest them, and their message degenerates from whatever the original protest was about to a nihilistic opposition to police as if they’re two sides of a soccer match. That’s when breaking glass and looting happens. And the looters, who knows if they even care about the cause, or if they just want free stuff. Much of that was nihilistic too yesterday, harming independent and minority-owned businesses. And the chief of police is black, in case they hadn’t noticed.

      If you move the protests outside downtown, then there would be fewer high-end stores to smash. But at the same time, the protests won’t be elsewhere for the same reason. Downtown is too symbolic, the center of the region’s identity, the easiest to get to on transit, and has the most infrastructure for accommodating large crowds. There was a secondary demonstration around Nathan Hale High School in northeast Seattle, but that could never have been the main demonstration, and I think it was mostly Nathan Hale students.

      The first Women’s March wanted to start from Cal Anderson Park but the city couldn’t accommodate that logistically so it offered Judkins Park instead. That left many people looking at a map to find out where Judkins Park was. And dismayed because it’s in an out-of-the-way location with little transit, highway, or parking access. (Link will change that but Link’s not there yet.) And concerned that the neighborhood was “unsafe”. But they went there anyway and managed to walk two miles to the regular Fourth Avenue route. (And it probably cured some people of thinking of the Central District as unsafe.) So a protest can start outside of central Seattle, but it will inevitably end up downtown.

    6. Imagine a riot in a residential neighborhood, though. Besides the very real danger of burning people alive in their wood-frame homes, the riots would be destroying people’s homes, not “corporations.”

      That changes the dynamics entirely. Nordstrom wasn’t fighting back, but neighborhood residents won’t stand idly by while their homes are ransacked. They will fight. And the outcomes will be more injured and dead.

      1. “Besides the very real danger of burning people alive in their wood-frame homes”

        That’s unrealistic. The protesters wouldn’t just transplant the fires to people’s homes. The point of the destruction was to send a message to the corporations as representatives of “the system”, and to get free merchandise. It would take a very different kind of protest to burn people’s houses; there would have to be an overwhelming rage at the homeowners. That hasn’t occurred in my lifetime: not in the mansions along Lake Washington Boulevard, nor in the middle-class neighborhoods in northeast, north, or west Seattle.

    7. The high point of last night’s demonstrations was Atlanta’s mayor saying, “If you want change, go register to vote, and show up in November.” (paraphrased). I actually clapped at the TV at that. If liberals and multiculturalists and young people voted in the same numbers as conservatives, xenophobes, and older people, and in non-presidential elections, it would turn the country around. Voter suppression is part of the problem, but that affects a few hundred thousands of people, while millions of people just don’t bother to vote or say it won’t matter anyway. But the analyses suggest that it takes just a 5% majority spread to overcome voter suppression.

  3. A video comment: I have always appreciated how British trains have high platforms. They figured out the benefit way before efforts like the ADA existed. It seems to some like a trivial feature, but it’s legacy to improve the user experience as well as the speed of how riders get on and off trains is significant.

    1. The British railways also have many 3 track stations where the middle track is a through track with no platform. This allows freight to go through the station without hitting the platform.

      Unfortunately in the USA, freight car clearance only allows high platforms in a very limited set of circumstances.

  4. Guy, I hope you’re not suggesting that Westlake should be reserved for violent demonstrations. Awful enough I had to watch Patriotically-Praying right winger Joey Gibson fake a showdown with a Chinese Communist on stilts.

    But the way I look at it, from the transit-history days when people said “Downtown” instead of “Retail Core”, willingness to accommodate public assembly has always gone with a business license in a location with a major regional subway station in your basement.

    Where the First Amendment’s Founders doubtless also intended to give you, your customers, and everybody else the right to be safe from personal violence. A right definitely guaranteed to the peace officers who put their own lives and safety on the line for public protection.

    In return for an agreement on their part to forebear from strangling a helpless captive, or putting seven bullets into a tiny pregnant mental patient whose knives their trained strength should’ve been more than sufficient to seize. Mainly, I’m wondering if The Age Of Reason didn’t presume a view of citizenship we’ve been waiting ever since to adopt.

    Someone who’s commanded men and women at arms….what would you think of universal conscription giving the choice of service in the police? And across the political spectrum, sworn-in volunteer parade marshals as a condition for a Constitutionally-guaranteed permit? 1960’s street actions included a fair number of those.

    Since many of our Founders saw themselves as restoring the Roman Republic as it was before it got corrupted into an empire, their pantheon’s Goddess of Panicked Terror would’ve been named COVIDIA.

    Necessitating that our Temporary National Anthem become Otis Redding doing: “A Change Is Gonna Come” on YouTube.

    Mark Dublin

    1. “Downtown” instead of “Retail Core””

      Downtown is ambiguous. Some people use it to mean Yesler Way to Denny Way; others Yesler Way to Stewart Street; others Weller Street to Mercer Street. “Retail Core” means just what it says: the Pike/Pine area. It was hilarious to hear TV reporters say City Hall wasn’t downtown (meaning the retail district).

  5. Video of at least one, and possibly two, Metro Transit supervisor vehicles on fire. The first one is clearly a Metro vehicle at 1:11. A few seconds later at about 1:15 you hear a load explosion, and the camera pans right to another SUV. The reporter identifies it as another transit vehicle, and says the explosion came from that vehicle and blew the bumper off.

      1. Somehow I don’t think it was only in the cowboy movies for editors to have a revolver under their desktop ink-blotter. Especially if they didn’t like slavery.

        Too bad it’s no use for reporters looking at rubber bullets. Common in Chile, happened in Minneapolis last night. Anybody in uniform capable of doing that….why would you expect that when her kids can legally “Buy”, they won’t use copper-jacketed lead?

        ‘Til the COVIDS fly away, maybe our National motto should be: “Melius Est Ut Sis!” Because at our dead worst, The United States of America and We Its People are certainly Better Than This.”

        Mark Dublin

  6. For the first time in two months, I decided that at least the eastside buses would be empty enough to start riding again, so I rode the 255 to my afternoon walk and the 231 back. Both directions, I was the only passenger on the bus the entire trip.

    Question for the crowd: If you are sitting in the back and are literally the only passenger on board, is it still necessary to put on a mask. Or is it good enough to just carry a mask in your pocket and take it out in the unlikely event that someone else gets on. The buses on the eastside have become empty enough that this is not a straw-man question, especially routes like the 231 that don’t go to Seattle. For my trip, I did end up wearing the mask the entire ride, but I couldn’t help feeling that, with no other passengers, it was probably overkill.

    1. Definitely don’t need the mask if nobody else is. Was the driver wearing a mask? I had an Amazon Prime delivery and the driver was wearing a mask. Next day UPS tried to mis-deliver a package, no mask.

      Friday I took Old Redmond Rd to 148th. The 245 I followed made no stops and one going the other direction was empty. Saw one RR-B on 148th that was also empty. Driving past Microsoft at 4PM the road was deserted! Like I’d been transported back in time to the mid 70’s.

    2. It probably isn’t necessary for your safety, but as a courtesy to the driver it might be a good idea to wear a mask, even if you are sitting in the back. I’m speaking as someone who hasn’t been on a transit bus since March 12th, however.

    3. Wearing the mask is still a courtesy to the next customer who will sit down in your seat or the seat in front of you, or touch the seatback or bar onto which you were breathing. Wearing the mask while walking around when nobody else is around you is a better time to get fresh air.

    4. I would wear a mask because the recircilated air goes back to the driver, and because Metro asks everyone to.

      I can believe that many Eastside buses are completely empty, but it’s not like that in Seattle. Most buses in central Seattle have at least a few people, and some have only a few spaces left below the limit. The 522 was like that. However, the 73 had nobody but me.

      1. Peaking in windows, that’s about what I’m seeing. Seattle buses have a few people on board, Eastside buses are 1-2 people at most, and routes that don’t go to Seattle that might carry 5-10 people on a pre-COVID day often have zero.

        Right now, it means I can ride the bus and feel pretty safe while onboard. But, it does not bode well for the service change looming in September. I’m bracing myself for massive service cuts on the Eastside in an effort to try to preserve as much service as possible in Seattle and South King.

        For the time being, I can at least enjoy the service we have while it lasts.

      2. Yes, Mike is right. There is no reason to wear a mask outside, if you are far away from someone. But inside, you should always wear a mask. It reduces the amount of germs put into the air.

  7. The bus cancellations yesterday was astounding. I only read email once a day so I only saw it this morning, but:
    * 41 and 522 were truncated at Northgate. Ongoing travelers were suggested to take the 40.
    * 40, 70, and D “will serve their stops on Sixth Avenue S, but will not serve downtown Seattle south of Denny Way.”
    * I-90 routes turned back at Mercer Island.
    * 520 routes terminated at South Kirkland P&R, except 545 continued to the U-District, and 255 goes to the U-District anyway.
    * 7 & 49 diverted to Boren.
    * 10 & 12 were canceled.
    * 36 turned back at Jackson Street and was “not serving Queen Anne”. I guess that means the 1 was canceled.
    * Northern and southern routes turned back at Denny Way or Edgar Martinez Dr.
    * Through routes like the 5/21 and 24/124 skirted downtown non-stop.
    * Link had “some station closures and changing conditions”.

    1. The same reroutes that were in place last night are back in place tonight and now buses are not serving the Bellevue area from 100th Ave NE to the west, NE 12th to the north, 405 to the east and Main St to the south. This is due to the peaceful demonstration and a group that was determined to cause trouble which they did by invading Bellevue Square breaking windows and doors and looting various stores. They also caused damage to other stores in the area.

    2. “Metro Route 41 and Sound Transit Express Route 522 are not traveling south of Northgate Transit Center or the University District respectively”

      I’m not sure where in the U District the 522 is going. Maybe following the 73’s route after 85th street to connect to the campus parkway buses or Link? Or maybe Metro just means the 522 turns around near 85th street?

      1. Metro says that the # 522 is not traveling south of the Northgate Transit Center and that means that they are terminating there as is the #41 and both routes are then going back north. The information from Metro says that anyone needing to go south of Northgate need to take the #40 which going south and near downtown.

    3. I’m just not seeing the logic in having no express route from Northgate Station to downtown (unless it was to intentionally deter protesters). If the 40 takes three times as long as the 41 to get passengers from Northgate to downtown, it takes three times as many additional buses on route 40 to provide that ride as it does on the express portion of the 41. Or, more likely, those passengers just drive downtown.

      If Link weren’t running on life support, having the 41 go to UW Station would be a tolerable alternative.

      1. Northgate Transit Center that is. Oh, can we fast forward to the opening of Northgate Station? By which point there will be a vaccine available to the general public hopefully, PoTUS will have signed several bills to undo the systemic causes of all the George Floyd protests, and the sale of new CO2-mobiles will have been banned for reasons other than the pandemic?

      2. Probable the reason that the # 41 was not going to downtown was that I-5 was closed through downtown and traffic SB has to get off at either Roanoke or take the 520 exit. Roanoke would have been the choice but it then meant that the buses would not have a lot of options to get close to downtown so not going further then Northgate was the best way to go as it was for the # 522.

      3. If conditions persist that force no downtown express routes, then why not divert routes 41 and 522 straight to UW Station?

  8. The Bellevue protests are on TV. It looks like on Bellevue Way there’s a regular bus and cars, and around the corner another bus signed “21 SPECIAL”. Any idea what it is?

    1. I saw a picture of that bus signed “21 SPECIAL” on the KOMO 4 News site. Going by the paint job (what little I could see of it), it appears to be an Everett Transit bus (not sure if that particular bus is still part of their fleet or was retired).

  9. This is turning into a shitty year. Ongoing Trumpisms, a pandemic, Depression-level unemployment, and now 1960s-level riots and looting. Plus Brexit, the fall of democracy in Hungary, leader-for-life in China, growing autoritarianism in Russia, a Trump-lite “what, me worry?” leader in Brazil, little climate action, and probably other things I’m forgetting. I hope it doesn’t remain like this for years.

      1. I don’t know what Hillary would have done. It probably would have been more deplorable than what her supporters imagine and less deplorable than what her hard-core critics could dream up. I’m no fan, but she at least unintentionally helped expose the open malignant cancer of Jim Crow / institutionalized racism we commonly refer to as the Electoral College, even if she hasn’t lifted a finger to help the Compact, or ranked choice voting for that matter, while trying to make millions off her pity-party book. Too much Not-Us-Me for my taste.

        I have significant disagreements with Joe Biden’s politics and the way his son gets backdoor emolument-ish jobs, and will most likely exercise my non-swing-state privilege to vote for someone I really want to vote for. But in comparison to the 2016 two-party-Sithdom choices, Biden outwardly exhibits a lot more humility. In an age dominated by Karens and Chads, that counts for a lot.

    1. Mike, I’m with you. My anxiety and depression are both through the roof with what is going on in my community and the world.

    2. Are you serious? Not taking emoluments. Not cozying up to dictator. Supporting our democratic allies. Being pro-active on climate. Not treating half of Americans as enemies. Not sowing chaos. Not appointing yes-men to head agencies. Regarding the pandemic, Hillary would have listened to the experts and supported them.

      1. “Franklin Pierce (November 23, 1804 – October 8, 1869) was the 14th president of the United States (1853–1857), a northern Democrat who saw the abolitionist movement as a fundamental threat to the unity of the nation.

        He alienated anti-slavery groups by supporting and signing the Kansas–Nebraska Act and enforcing the Fugitive Slave Act, yet he failed to stem conflict between North and South, setting the stage for Southern secession and the American Civil War.”

        -Wikipedia

        Our country’s seen worse, Mike. Too bad his Successor In Chief can point to him as proof of what happens when you elect a Democrat!

        One thing people opposed to slavery did was to take up both the Abolitionist cause and also guns, and risk their lives escorting fugitive slaves to Canada. John Brown’s bumper-sticker would’ve read: “When the Slave-Catching Starts, We Start Shooting Back!”

        Not advocating violence, or combative gun ownership by anybody who hasn’t been in the Armed Forces. But soon as it “airs” online, guarantee a certain Disgruntled Employee of mine will start tweeting to a different t(w)une. Fortunately, I think I’m seeing the start of a new remedy:

        Young people looking steadily into the camera and expressing the sentiment that in addition to the fact they’re being bled to death by student loans, unarmed black people are going to stop facing Death for Disobedience over a missed turn signal.

        The Class Project for the Class of 2020, high school and college, will be to take over two political parties from the grass roots, with the philosophy and agenda that for Us the People, our politics and our economy are Ours to Run.

        The Democrat I mentioned above did eventually help create an antidote to his awful self. Google Wikipedia for “The Radical Republicans.” Will be a badly-needed giggle to watch the other side fault them for their attitude to firearms. The ones on Union warships say it all.

        Mark Dublin

  10. With problems with destruction and looting in and around the Southcenter Mall routes # 128, # 150, # 156 and the F line are not serving the area defined by I-5 to the west, I-405 to the north, SR 167 to the east and S 180th to the south.

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