‘Why are we exporting billions of dollars around the state?’ The coming showdown over Seattle’s money
In all there are 33 counties that pay less than they get, and supposed leech King County provides 97% of the money boosting those counties.
The figures show King’s taxpayers sent the state $8.04 billion and got back just $5.09 billion in spending. Per capita, King paid $3,820 in taxes in return for just $2,419 in spending — or a net donation annually of $1,401 by each and every King County resident to the good people of the rest of the state.
Who are totally hacked off anyway. So much so they voted to slash transit and bus projects in Seattle in part out of sheer animus.
That’s some major league shade, NYT, and I tip my ball cap to you.
The umpires tried to raise Joe Torre, the Hall of Famer who moonlights as chief baseball officer.
See previous comment about small minds and enormous challenges.
Today’s monster fires result largely from three human forces: taxpayer-funded fire suppression that has made the forest a tinderbox; policies that encourage construction in places that are clearly prone to burning; and climate change, which has worsened everything. In the latest piece of evidence, a study published in July by the American Geophysical Union concluded that climate change is “very likely” the main reason that, between 1972 and 2018, the acreage burned annually in California jumped fivefold and the acreage burned in summertime forest fires surged eightfold. A warming climate has dried the ground and the vegetation on it, the study found, leaving them readier to burn.
Behind these three forces is a massive economic perversity: Society masks the costs of building on the edges of the forest, a zone that planners call the “wildland-urban interface,” or the WUI. With its vast forests and penchant for sprawl, California is the epicenter of WUI wildfire damage. Between 2000 and 2013, fire destroyed more buildings in California’s WUI than in all similar areas in the United States combined, and more than 75 percent of all buildings destroyed by fire in California were in the WUI, according to a University of Wisconsin–Madison study.
Absolutely frightening to imagine the small minds leading us as these enormous challenges bear down on us.
More than 20 million people in Vietnam, almost one-quarter of the population, live on land that will be inundated.
Much of Ho Chi Minh City, the nation’s economic center, would disappear with it, according to the research, which was produced by Climate Central, a science organization based in New Jersey, and published in the journal Nature Communications.
Here I am, 34 years old, and I learned more about TikTok than I ever knew before from reading this article in a print edition that had been sitting on my desk for more than three weeks. And here I am sharing the passage I most identify with on a pseudo-social network that, seemingly, only I use.
I already have enough digital tools to insure that I never need to sit alone with the simple fact of being alive.
At a time when youth sport participation is stratifying by income, one could argue that even soccer fields have become the domain of the upper-middle class and above. But true rich-kid sports include water polo, squash, crew, lacrosse, and skiing. One does not simply fall into the river and come out a water-polo star, and no downhill-slalom champions casually roam the halls of low-income high schools. These sports often require formal training, expensive equipment, and upscale facilities. No wonder they are dominated by affluent young players.
While there is nothing morally wrong with enjoying a game of catch in a pool, participation in these activities has come to play a subtle, yet ludicrously powerful, role in the reproduction of elite status in the United States.
At Harvard, nearly 1,200 undergraduates—or 20 percent of the student body— participate in intercollegiate athletics. That’s more student athletes than Ohio State University, whose total undergraduate enrollment of 46,000 is nearly seven times larger.
I delayed reading this because my own indifference-tending-toward-disdain for Joe Rogan, but it’s very worth the read.
There’s a tendency right now to make every single thing about Donald Trump, but if you don’t see the dotted line connecting the president to a wave of men who feel thwarted and besieged and sentenced to an endless apology tour, then you’re not paying attention. Lots of these panicked men, as it happens, despise Trump every bit as much as they love Joe Rogan.
It would be wrong, moreover, to portray French as innately inflexible. The language has, like any other, accepted many words from English over the years. Autobiographie, for example, was accepted as a borrowed term so long ago that it’s hardly considered a borrowed term at all anymore. More recently, les chips, le jogging, le bifteck, la vitamine and sexy have arrived in the French dictionary, without much enduring institutional resistance.
Someone asked me a similar question recently, but Klosterman is able to put into words what was just a bunch of flustered mouth noises from me.
You’re organizing a literary dinner party. Which three writers, dead or alive, do you invite?
I have a lot of issues with this question. I realize the purpose of the hypothetical is to reflect some deeper insight into the subject’s aesthetic sensibility, but I can’t help but take it literally. First of all, I have several friends who have coincidentally written books, and some of these friends I haven’t seen in years. I would obviously prefer having dinner with three old friends as opposed to three famous strangers, regardless of how talented they were as writers. Over the past 20 years, I’ve often found myself in professional situations where I’ve had to have dinner with arbitrary collections of random authors, many of whom were nice and a few of whom are brilliant. Yet the experience itself is almost always uncomfortable. It seems like the first half of dinner involves everybody trying too hard to be overly complimentary to everyone else at the table, and then the second half of dinner is just people complaining about how they don’t sell enough books or make enough money. It never feels like a real conversation unless everyone at the table is drunk. Moreover, the fact that this proposed scenario involves the possibility of selecting guests who are “dead or alive” really forces my hand. It seems insane to pick any living person if dead people are eligible. There is no author alive who’s a fraction as compelling as any dead garbageman, and there’s no theoretical discussion about the craft of writing that would be half as interesting as asking “What was it like to die?” to someone who could respond authoritatively to that query. The only problem is that dead people might not understand what was going on, why they were suddenly alive, or why they were being forced to make conversation with some bozo at a weird dinner party. They might just sit there and scream for two hours. And even if they kept it together, I’m sure they’d be highly distracted. If I invite Edgar Allan Poe to dinner, it seems possible he’d spend the whole time expressing amazement over the restaurant’s air conditioning.
I’m often asked to explain what makes internet culture different from some previous mode of human experience, and the maybe boring answer is that it is not always so different. There is a temptation to overemphasize the novelty of internet culture, but our media, economic system and values did not spontaneously appear in, like, 1996. I sometimes think about the internet as a fun house mirror, a tool for stretching and magnifying existing dynamics.
Anderson recalls an auction for pallets of robotic hamsters called ZhuZhu Pets, which were briefly hot in 2009, with a Disney Channel cartoon and video games. The pallet was number 20,000. “That means somebody imported 20,000 pallets at least. That is an insane number.” Doing the math, he comes up with almost 800 tractor-trailers full of robot hamsters that had become so unprofitable on Amazon that he told the auctioneer he wouldn’t take them if he was paid to.
A key player in the story of automobile supremacy is single-family-only zoning, a shadow segregation regime that is now justifiably on the defensive for outlawing duplexes and apartments in huge swaths of the country. Through these and other land-use restrictions—laws that separate residential and commercial areas or require needlessly large yards—zoning rules scatter Americans across distances and highway-like roads that are impractical or dangerous to traverse on foot. The resulting densities are also too low to sustain high-frequency public transit.
Further entrenching automobile supremacy are laws that require landowners who build housing and office space to build housing for cars as well. In large part because of parking quotas, parking lots now cover more than a third of the land area of some U.S. cities; Houston is estimated to have 30 parking spaces for every resident
While sulfide-ore mining techniques vary and continue to evolve, in the past some safety records have caused concern. A 2012 study by the nonprofit Earthworks reviewed 14 U.S. sulfide-ore copper mines—predominately open-pit—which produced 89 percent of the country’s copper in 2010, the most recent data available from the U.S. Geological Survey. All the mines experienced pipeline spills or other accidental releases. Tailings spills occurred at nine operations, and at 13 of the 14 mines, the study says, “water collection and treatment systems have failed to control contaminated mine seepage, resulting in significant water-quality impacts.”
That risk is more worrisome in Minnesota, where 6 percent of the surface area is water—more than any other state in the country. The three-million-acre Superior National Forest, which contains the Boundary Waters, holds 20 percent of the fresh water in the U.S. national-forest system. It also borders Lake Superior, the largest and least polluted of the Great Lakes, which holds 10 percent of the world’s fresh surface water.
“Beauty has been so domesticated in our imaginations here,” Goodyear says. “We’ve cheapened it by making such a pop-culture product out of it, where it’s the background to every car commercial, it’s a sold image. I think that dulled the awareness that what you were looking at was a picture of danger. But anyone who thought about it for a second, or even who didn’t think about it, I believe, probably unconsciously could feel that in those pictures of the coastline in California — with the dramatic cliffs and the sparkling blue oceans — that the beauty is the danger. It is the expression of the danger, of the seismic activity, of the relationship between the water and the land, which threatens the humans who would build along that strand. You feel it there, and you call it majestic or stunning or any of the things you might call it. But what you feel is awe, and awe is terror.”
My existential dread in a nutshell.
Behind all of it, Yang sees automation, driven by the unstoppable will of the market. The story starts with the decline of American manufacturing, something politicians are used to talking about. But Yang thinks that decline is driven less by globalization and more by automated assembly lines, which have allowed the sector to maintain roughly the same output levels as 2007 while dropping nearly a million jobs. In a few years, self-driving freight trucks will follow, unlocking tens of billions of dollars for investors and displacing millions of truck drivers, to be followed shortly by cab drivers, clerks, service workers, and radiologists. There will be no profit motive to reintegrate them, no training program that can make their skills valuable again. Yang predicts an epidemic of depreciating human capital hitting profession after profession until society disintegrates, overwhelmed by the sheer volume of human despair.
It’s grim, with obvious echoes of Marx (who was writing about automation too). But where Marx saw a struggle between discrete classes, Yang sees a tidal wave hitting group after group in sequence. In his reading, no one is safe and we’re all in it together.
Cayenne stimulates the nervous system, awakens mucus, and can cause the heart to beat faster. The heat builds on itself. Jeffries likes to say that hot chicken will sober you up and clean you out. She calls it “a twenty-four-hour chicken.” Activities that may not pair well with Nashville hot chicken include a road trip, a long flight, a first date, work, sleep, and your wedding. First-timers have been advised to prepare for hot chicken by putting a roll of toilet paper in the freezer at home.
This isn't a dystopian novel; this is real.
The social credit system aims to incentivise “trustworthy” behaviour through penalties as well as rewards. According to a government document about the system dating from 2014, the aim is to “allow the trustworthy to roam everywhere under heaven while making it hard for the discredited to take a single step.”
The controversy has focused on penalties for those who do not pay for their transit trip, thereby committing “fare evasion.” Punishment can be stiff: in the District of Columbia fare evaders on the local transit system, Metro, could get a $300 fine and 10 days in jail. That’s hard to square that with a comparably light $30 fine for an expired parking meter in the District of Columbia—especially since transit riders are more likely to be minorities or have incomes below $15,000 than the general population.
There are 50,000 tourists to Antarctica every year?
Ever since Beijing approved Antarctica as a tourist destination about a decade ago, the number of Chinese visitors making the journey has jumped from zero to more than 8,000 a year (making up about 16 percent of all tourists to Antarctica in 2018).
It took a nearly six-figure helicopter ride for an excavator, some frustrating bureaucratic jujitsu, sleepless nights and lucky weather, but Jantzer and others managed to avert the immediate crisis by modifying the dam before it failed.
Now the excavator, marooned amid a dispute over how to get it out, is a symbol itself of the water problems deep in Pacific Northwest wilderness.
Better. Than. Fiction.
The Soviets took notice. Not long after his initial discoveries, Mr. Frey said, he was invited by the Soviet Academy of Sciences to visit and lecture. Toward the end, in a surprise, he was taken outside Moscow to a military base surrounded by armed guards and barbed-wire fences.
“They had me visiting the various labs and discussing the problems,” including the neural impacts of microwaves, Mr. Frey recalled. “I got an inside look at their classified program.”
Moscow was so intrigued by the prospect of mind control that it adopted a special terminology for the overall class of envisioned arms, calling them psychophysical and psychotronic.
Soviet research on microwaves for “internal sound perception,” the Defense Intelligence Agency warned in 1976, showed great promise for “disrupting the behavior patterns of military or diplomatic personnel.”
Furtively, globally, the threat grew.
The National Security Agency gave Mark S. Zaid, a Washington lawyer who routinely gets security clearances to discuss classified matters, a statement on how a foreign power built a weapon “designed to bathe a target’s living quarters in microwaves, causing numerous physical effects, including a damaged nervous system.”
Mr. Zaid said a N.S.A. client of his who traveled there watched in disbelief as his nervous system later unraveled, starting with control of his fingers.
I want to go to there.
Black Restaurant Week started in Houston in 2016 and has since spread to five other cities. The restaurant Kitchen 713 has been one participant in the promotion, serving “Global Soul” food from its location near Rice University. Another is Turkey Leg Hut, a wildly successful late-night restaurant owned by the couple Lynn and Kia Price. Music was already pounding at noon, when I sat at the bar. Behind it hangs a yellow neon sign: WHEN LIFE GIVES YOU LEMONADE, ADD HENNESSY. That apparently goes equally for when life gives you turkey legs. The Hut's signature item is a tomahawk-size leg, smoked until ruby red and ready to fall apart at the slightest touch; one version comes lacquered with a sweet, slightly spicy Hennessy glaze. (There is also a Cîroc Mango Habanero version that I felt would be too performatively woke to order.) The legs are also available stuffed with shrimp Alfredo or crawfish mac and cheese.
Sounds like my hometown.
Not everything is to be had for a dollar, but rarely is anything priced above $10. But there is a cost. Dollar General’s aggressive pricing drives locally owned grocery stores out of business, replacing shelves stocked with fresh fruit, vegetables and meat with the kinds of processed foods underpinning the country’s obesity and diabetes crisis.
Dollar Generals are frequently found at the heart of “food deserts”, defined by the department of agriculture as a rural community where one-third of residents live more than 10 miles from a grocery store selling fresh produce.
ICE is a division of the Department of Homeland Security, and therefore not an official branch of the American military. HOWEVER…you don’t have to be Nancy Drew here to glean that the president is attempting, in his characteristically blunt way, to troop-ify ICE. He’s trying to make them as bulletproof as our armed forces, and to frame them as brave public servants willing to do the dangerous work that you, the coddled civilian, are too weak and spineless to do. ICE agents are risking their lives to keep you SAFE. You are the beneficiary of their bravery fighting the supposed animals of MS-13. You want ICE on that wall, you need ICE on that wall, etc.
All you have to do is brand ICE as a quasi-military operation, and you’ll get Wingnut Facebook to fall in line. They have troop-ified ICE, among other entities. They’ve also troop-ified local police departments, even giving them military-grade equipment so that they look the part. And, of course, they have troop-ified the troops themselves.
Fucking titles. Preach!
This is why ad agencies are collectively wondering why the Deloittes and McKinseys of the world have been moving into our world. Someone with an MBA working at a consultancy with three years of experience commands respect, while a person with the same credentials at an ad agency receives none. Quite simply, the person at a consultancy firm is given a basic title and thrown into the trenches with very little optical oversight, and in so doing is effectively able to get things done. The opposite is true in an ad agency. A junior or intermediate account person or creative left alone with a client, without layers of oversight and safety measures, which of course creates the opposite effect.
But it’s not simply the scale of requests that is perplexing utility staff. Many would-be miners have no understanding of how large power purchases work. In one case this winter, miners from China landed their private jet at the local airport, drove a rental car to the visitor center at the Rocky Reach Dam, just north of Wenatchee, and, according to Chelan County PUD officials, politely asked to see the “dam master because we want to buy some electricity.”
This might explain how we’ve arrived at this improbable moment when microdosing LSD in order to increase workplace productivity is, in some precincts, more professionally acceptable than having a glass of wine. But it’s not LSD that has replaced our midday cocktails; it’s that other modern intoxicant: productivity.
I have no connection to it, and I cannot explain why, but I am endlessly fascinated by horse racing.
Promises Fulfilled went to the lead, but Justify never let him get away. In the backstretch, Smith let him relax a bit, but once he asked for Justify’s best around the far turn, the horse responded like a freight train.
Oh, Canada! 🚈🇨🇦
But it’s two votes, both 50 years ago, that still define the two cities’ transportation systems.
In 1967, Vancouver’s City Council voted against building a highway through its historic Chinatown and Gastown neighborhoods. It is the only major North American city without a downtown highway.
A year later, 51 percent of Seattle voters chose to build a regional light-rail system. But the measure needed 60 percent, and the defeat set light rail back by 30 years.
I resent my neighborhood being called a “hip, lock-side borough.” Also this is not reassuring.
Ballard, which sits just northwest of downtown, is representative of the city’s vulnerabilities. It is both low-lying and served by an outdated system that combines sewage and stormwater drainage. Polluted runoff shed by neighboring hills frequently floods this hip, lock-side borough. With pipes too small to manage, the system is forced to offload a mix of rainwater and sewage into nearby Lake Union—a serious public health and environmental hazard.
People feel compelled to make predictions about blockchains. Here’s mine: The current wave of coins will eventually ebb, because it’s a big, inefficient, unholy mess. It’s more ideology than financial instrument, and ideology is rarely a sustainable store of value. Plus, transactions are slow (everyone says they’re fixing that), and you shouldn’t have to use an aluminum smelter’s worth of power to make new currency.
Most things that the blockchain promises to do can be done more easily with other technologies, including good ol’ fiat currency. But I know a mind virus when I see it.
This warms my cold heart.
I hope you like living at St. Mary’s. Most of the time I like it too. I have exams coming up and I should be busy studying. You do not have exams because you are a tree. I don’t think that there is much more to talk about as we don't have a lot in common, you being a tree and such. But I’m glad we’re in this together.
Though Ms. Neumann has no background in education (on the website, she describes herself as “an avid student of life” and says her “superpower” is “intuition”), she has applied for accreditation from the state, has hired a team of career educators and is accepting applications for the coming school year. Tuition for toddlers: $36,000 a year.
“We all understand how complicated and regulated school is compared to the simpler business that we are already in,” Mr. Neumann said. “But we decided we’re going to go into education. If you really want to change the world, change kids when they’re 2.”
As he proselytized, Mr. Neumann was sitting on an enormous leather couch in his Chelsea office, which is bigger than many New York City apartments. It included a conference table, a video conferencing setup, several desks, a bar, spreads of food, a Peloton exercise bike, a climbing machine, a boxing bag hanging from the ceiling, a gong, an antechamber where assistants work and a private bathroom.
And what is the alternative?
Here’s one possible scenario: New York won’t die, but it will become a different place. It will happen slowly, almost imperceptibly, for years, obscured by the prosperity of the segment of the population that can consistently avoid mass transit. But gradually, an unpleasant and unreliable subway will have a cascading effect on New Yorkers’ relationship with their city. Increasingly, we will retreat; the infinite possibilities of New York will shrink as the distances between neighborhoods seem to grow. In time, businesses will choose to move elsewhere, to cities where public transit is better and housing is cheaper. This will depress real estate values, which will make housing more affordable in the short term. But it will also slow growth and development, which will curtail job prospects and deplete New York’s tax base, limiting its ability to provide for citizens who rely on its public institutions for opportunity. The gap between rich and poor will widen. As the city’s density dissipates, so too will its economic energy. Innovation will happen elsewhere. New York City will be just some city.
"It's not just the NSA," he adds. Other state-sponsored hackers likely have the skills—and had the time—to have potentially found the Spectre and Meltdown attacks, too.
The whole world has gone crazy.
The 130 year old Eastman Kodak company announced an ICO yesterday because it’s 2018 and nothing matters.
I feel personally insulted by its business model.
Over the years I’ve spent chronicling the ups and downs (but mostly ups) of the startup world, I’ve witnessed plenty of over-the-top parties, publicity stunts, and gift-lavishing. “This is why they hate us,” I used to joke. But in Lisbon, I realized the joke was true.
Yeah, why not trust Comcast to own the content and the distribution? 🤦♂️
By July 2019, the bitcoin network will require more electricity than the entire United States currently uses. By February 2020, it will use as much electricity as the entire world does today.
Going to miss the hell out of this place no matter how good the new location.
Collections of 13 coins embedded in the counters and tabletops honor the name, which came from a restaurant in Lima, Peru, called Las Trece Monedas — this according to Paul Mackay, who worked at 13 Coins before eventually becoming the owner of posh El Gaucho, which itself was opened by original 13 Coins owner, Jim Ward, in 1953. When Ward died in 1970, his finances were found to be significantly entangled with Seattle’s legendary organized-crime figure Frank Colacurcio Sr., according to a 1980 Seattle Times report. His wife — who, also per the Times, “favored expensive furs and rode around in a chauffeured, champagne-colored Lincoln Continental” — opened the SeaTac 13 Coins in 1976, then two more restaurants, before losing it all in bankruptcy.
He and others scouted out suspicious plots of land, looking for signs of slightly upturned earth. When they found one, they hammered long metal crosses six feet into the ground, then wrenched them out to sniff for the smell of decay. This is how the poor search for their dead.
“You wake up, get the shuttle bus, go to the bubble of campus and order food via an app when you get home. You are not a citizen, just a bizarre leech who makes money,” he explained.
When I called the Rustlers Inn to make a reservation, the woman who picked up the phone asked if I was a construction worker. I said no. She paused and said, “You’re not one of the homeless, are you?” I said I wasn’t—that I was a writer coming to report on the town’s resurgence. She repeated her suspicion that I was a vagrant and hung up.
West Seattle voters remember this. Politicians hostile to the press should be kicked the hell out of office.
Herbold, who chairs the City Council budget committee, did not respond to repeated interview requests sent over the last three weeks to discuss the streetcar.
This guy gets me.
Sleep is really one of the last pure joys in my life now that I’m 44 ½. Eating tacos is second.
Nearby, the new Hilton London Bankside on Great Suffolk Street has made an effort to inculcate itself into the neighborhood by bridging past and present. While its lobby and facade are standard contemporary faux-chic, its Victorian steampunk bar, the Distillery, is named after the old Stevenson & Howell fragrance factory that occupied the site in the 1800s. I ordered one of its fragrance-inspired cocktails, “Thus With a Kiss I Die,” a delicious amalgamation of mezcal, amaro, sweet vermouth and chocolate bitters combined by the bartender in front of me with a great flourish. The problem was drinking the thing. I sipped my potation in one section of the bar, only to be told that it was reserved for a corporate party. When I moved to another part of the bar I was informed that it was also reserved for a corporate party.
“Where can I sit?” I asked. The waiter sheepishly pointed to a lone chair in the corner. “There, I think, is O.K.,” he said. Next to me, I could feel the ghost of Jane Jacobs cringing.
“Rick and Morty” gets New Yorker-splained and it is fucking brilliant.
In early October, McDonald’s took the further step of preparing regular packets of the sauce for distribution in restaurants, and things fell apart. The corporation supplied its franchisees with far too few packets to meet the fanatic demand, and the good vibes of an improvised viral-marketing scheme soured like a Disneyland acid trip gone bad. Thousands of would-be Szechuan-sauce dippers had empty hands as they turned their backs on the golden arches. This week brings word that a “Rick and Morty” fan in Michigan has traded his Volkswagen Golf for one packet.
Postman today is best remembered as a critic of television: That’s the medium he directly blamed, in Amusing Ourselves to Death, for what he termed Americans’ “vast descent into triviality,” and the technology he saw as both the cause and the outcome of a culture that privileged entertainment above all else. But Postman was a critic of more than TV alone. He mistrusted entertainment, not as a situation but as a political tool; he worried that Americans’ great capacity for distraction had compromised their ability to think, and to want, for themselves. He resented the tyranny of the lol. His great observation, and his great warning, was a newly relevant kind of bummer: There are dangers that can come with having too much fun.
You don’t need to go all the way to Israel to see the world of post-work. If you have at home a teenage son who likes computer games, you can conduct your own experiment. Provide him with a minimum subsidy of Coke and pizza, and then remove all demands for work and all parental supervision. The likely outcome is that he will remain in his room for days, glued to the screen. He won’t do any homework or housework, will skip school, skip meals and even skip showers and sleep. Yet he is unlikely to suffer from boredom or a sense of purposelessness. At least not in the short term.
Hence virtual realities are likely to be key to providing meaning to the useless class of the post-work world. Maybe these virtual realities will be generated inside computers. Maybe they will be generated outside computers, in the shape of new religions and ideologies. Maybe it will be a combination of the two. The possibilities are endless, and nobody knows for sure what kind of deep plays will engage us in 2050.