Port Commissioner Gregoire weighs in on Goodspaceguy, water on Mars

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When perennial candidate Goodspaceguy – who is vying to become a Seattle Port Commissioner in the general election – filmed the most important interview of his career with KCTS and Crosscut, current commissioner Courtney Gregoire welcomed the chance to address her opponent's claims, and discuss some of the same issues...

On Using the Port of Seattle for Space Exploration

Goodspaceguy: Space involves travel, and the Port of Seattle involves travel. Now, I don’t think I’m going to advocate for any launches from the Port of Seattle into space, because it’s rather noisy.

That’s the reason?

Um, no. You mean that’s the reason…

That you wouldn’t advocate for space launches from the Port of Seattle.

Right, the noise. Unless people said they really would like the noise. But I’m guessing people would say they don’t want the noise.


Commissioner Gregoire, what do believe are the main obstacles keeping us from using the Port of Seattle to launch rocket ships into outer space?

Gregoire: (Long pause) The main obstacle that I see, to be perfectly honest, is that the Port of Seattle is such a critical economic engine for our region. We need to make sure we are able to service the extra-large ships that are calling our port.

I also think that rockets may interfere with FAA regulations around the airport.

On Political Dirty Tricks

So I want to talk about the real Goodspaceguy. You’ve previously said “I’m from Phoebe, one of Saturn’s many moons.” What did you mean by that?

Goodspaceguy: I never said that, I never said that. There are people who claim to be Goodspaceguy, and they’re putting out things as if I produced it, which I didn’t...In politics there are dirty tricks, and one is to say that other candidates said this or that. So that is one of the lies that spread in a campaign to discredit me.


I'm told that people pretend to be Goodspaceguy in public settings in an effort to undermine his public image. Has that ever happened to you?

Gregoire: I heard that from him last night at a forum. I have not yet experienced that. He is the only Goodspaceguy that I have met.

Do you believe Goodspaceguy is from Earth, and not one of Saturn's many moons, as one of his alleged impersonators has claimed?

(Unprofessional laughter) Oh no. Um, um, I, uh, yeah, uh... My understanding is that he does come from Earth. He has some thoughts on space colonization. I understand that his number one concern on his name was it wasn't coming up enough on Google alerts.

On Being Cost Efficient

Goodspaceguy: ...Begin with colonies that orbit around the earth. And I want them around the earth because that’s the cheapest place to a build them for the people to learn how to colonize orbital space.

Cheaper than other planets, such as Mars.

Mars being more distance will be more expensive. And I’m an expert at keeping cost down.


Gregoire: My opponent has made the argument that the best way to drive down expenses is just to run down costs to the lowest common denominator. I've got to tell you that the best way to get a return on investment for our community is making sure we’re supporting quality jobs and a sound environment.

On Standing Out in the Race

In Seattle politics, so many races can feature candidates who seem very similar in many ways. How do you differentiate yourself from your opponent?

Gregoire: (Thoughtful pause) Ah. Um. First and foremost, I guess one of the primary reasons that I sought this out in the first place is I have a lot of experience in international trade with the federal government that I thought I could I could bring the bear at the Port. I would say that experience is not something that my opponent has been trumpeting on the campaign trail.

I think I bring to bear some sound experience. I think I have a real vision of where the Port should be going. And while I’m very, very, very glad to hear we found water on Mars recently, I think we've got some work to do right here at our port, to make sure we are a sound economic development agency, delivering on our commitment to keep middle class jobs in our region, and grow the pie for everyone.


The full Goodspaceguy interview can be found below, with a transcript here.


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About the Authors & Contributors

Drew Atkins

Drew Atkins

Drew Atkins is a journalist and writer in Seattle, and the recipient of numerous national and regional awards. His work has appeared in the New York Times, Seattle Times, The Oregonian, InvestigateWest, Geekwire, Seattle Magazine, and others. He also previously served as the managing editor of Crosscut. He can be contacted at drew.atkins@crosscut.com.