Basking in the Sonics glow
The confirmation that Seattle-native hedge fund manager Chris Hansen has a deal to purchase the Sacramento Kings set off a political land rush to bask in the light. Seattle Mayor Mike McGinn and County Executive Dow Constantine seemed to be one-two out of the starting gate, with emails to press welcoming the nearly assured return of NBA basketball. City Councilmember Tim Burgess, a candidate for mayor and an architect of council approval for a new arena plan, also got off a quick release announcing his availability to discuss the purchase.
One day for celebrating? Sure. But soon will follow the necessary re-examinations and questions about where the team goes, whether it's really good for the city, etc.
What now, Key Arena?
The future of KeyArena will be one subject for debate. Some will insist that if it's good enough for the first two years — while a proposed new SoDo arena would be built — it's also a permanent solution. Perhaps more relevantly, there will be the question of whether to tear down the Key. As Crosscut's Knute Berger has been arguing, there's a big historic preservation issue involved.
Watching some 4,000 people enjoy themselves Saturday at the opening of the Rat City Roller Girls season (crowds tend to grow as the season goes on), it was easy to imagine that creative ways can be found to keep the arena, which dates back to the 1962 World's Fair.
Side note: For those of you interested in dipping your toes into the local roller derby scene, don't let your knowledge level (or lack thereof) keep you from attending a game. The league does a great job in person of explaining the competition.
Tacoma councilman arrested
Here's the kind of news no politician wants to be associated with: Tacoma City Councilmember Ryan Mello was arrested on suspicion of drunk driving over the weekend. A report on MyNorthwest.com says that he was polite throughout and avoided any suggestion that he was too important for the officer to mess with. In fact, he didn't even mention his political position.
Guess that's a start on political rehabilitation — and a lot better than sometimes may happen when a politician is pulled over.
Seattle business is U.S. business
Not to get all pompous or anything, but it sometimes feels like — aside from the little matter of Wall Street — Seattle business news is national business news. Three New York Times articles this morning provide a case in point.
The national news bigwig had a report this morning on the safety investigation into Boeing's 787 problems and, at more length, the potential business impacts for the company, a leading U.S. exporter. There was also a lengthy look at how Amazon's customer review system affects book sales. The system has faced scrutiny recently after livid Michael Jackson fans review-bombed a new biography that claimed the famous singer's plastic surgery reduced his nose to mere slits and that he died a virgin.
The book's content aside, if angry fans can effectively censor a biography they disagree with, what's to stop others from organizing to destroy the sales of other tomes they dislike? Is this the new way to ban books online?
In a unique, if not rare, move for initiative entrepreneur Tim Eyman, he apologized today to Wenatchee city council members. Eyman sent out a seemingly heartfelt email this morning saying he had gone overboard in calling officials in Wenatchee arrogant for blocking an initiative to let voters decide on local red-light cameras.
The Wenatchee World has a story noting the initial email was about an initiative he recently filed that would, among other things, block cities from refusing to put local initiatives, like ones he has run on red-light cameras, before voters. Eyman is usually genial in person, even while being an aggressive debater. But an apology? Is success mellowing him?
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