Letters to the Editor

Bainbridge Island Review Letters to the Editor | Oct. 29

Election ’08

BITV’s airing of film shows partisanship

In any election or levy issue I applaud creative, hard-fought campaigns that bring sunlight to issues and inform the voters. Sunlight is the best disinfectant. However, I continue to decry efforts by politicians or agencies to shut down discussion. I furthermore decry campaigns that violate PDC laws or parties engaging in unfair and possibly illegal use of quasi-public agencies to tip the scale of public opinion through Byzantine alliances.

Case in point: Bainbridge Island Television (BITV) public-access station has aired since the ballots were mailed out more than four hours of a 26-minute documentary called “Forest in the City,” which is clearly a political pro-Proposition 1 (Parks’ lid-lift levy) film.

The documentary is an exaltation of the open-space ethos and testimonial for voting “yes,” and is clearly designed to lead voters. In my close following of BITV programming, it is more than coincidence the documentary has been airing prime-time each evening.

My letter of complaint to BITV Director (Scott) Schmidt drew a form-letter (Dear BITV Viewer) stating: ”BITV has a legal obligation to air programs submitted.” Mr. Schmidt ducked the main conflict: Why is he airing a partisan, political piece during the election window with unprecedented frequency? Yes, the piece in question is artistic and would be a welcome view throughout the rest of the year.

Could the reason for “Forest in the City” receiving first-class treatment be that the city is a BITV sponsor, a major customer and BITV is involved contractually with COBI as a licensed station from Comcast? Could it be because the documentary’s independent producer, Cameron Snow, wife of City Council member Chris Snow and a listed contributor to BNWS, submitted the piece?

The second issue is that the People for Parks Committee’s financial books fail to show any contribution for this documentary or the air time on their PDC records. The value of a 26-minute production plus five hours of prime-time air is not shown on the books of this committee. The value must be over $10,000. I also cannot locate any independent PDC filing by Ms. Snow for this pro-Proposition 1 production. People for Parks has been advertising but expenditures for the ads are not on thcommittee books. The People for Parks Committee has not had the “paid for” element in their ads to date, a clear violation.

During elections, our newspapers carry pro/con on political issues and letters to the editor. Voters’ guides have pro/con information, as do our public-forum political debates. Why should Comcast and area viewers of BITV see five hours of pro-Proposition 1 fare? Public-access television has a responsibility to be public-access to all and not a private network for the City of Bainbridge Island’s political agenda. Our voters deserve more. George Orwell in Animal Farm captured this BITV sentiment: “All animals are equal but some animals more equal than others.”

James M. Olsen

Shining City Media

Attorneys favor Dalton for judge

In this busy election season, a race for Kitsap County Superior Court judge has gone largely under the radar screen. The Kitsap County Bar Association polled its members in the race between attorneys Jeanette Dalton and Bruce Danielson.Fifty-ones found Dalton qualified or highly qualified; six found her not qualified. Eight found Danielson qualified or highly qualified; 38 found him unqualified.

You can find the results and the candidates’ statements at www.votingforjudges.org

Rob Crichton

Port Madison

County attorneys afraid of Danielson

Why is there an obvious well-organized effort to discredit Bruce Danielson’s qualifications for Superior Court judge?

The recent letters in the paper aren’t from concered idividuals. They are a calculated effort from the good old boys practicing law in Kitsap who are friends of (Jeanette) Dalton.

Danielson refused to accept money and endorsements from local attorneys. Why does this bother the local legal community? Are they afraid of a judge who will put the people’s interests first?

Danielson’s broad-base legal practice in various courts outside of Kitsap County and his extensive experience as an arbitrator make him a far better candidate than his opponent, who has a limited specialized practice. Bruce Danielson has the experience, impartiality, intergrity and judicial independence we should all want in our next Judge.

Cheryl Rawlins

Port Orchard

Dalton possess the necessary skills

We, the voters of Kitsap County, are fortunate to be able to elect Jeanette Dalton to replace retiring Superior Court Judge Len Costello. Ms. Dalton is a seasoned trial lawyer and substitute judge, smart, thoughtful, dedicated to the law, mindful of the complexity of diverse problems and litigants, hard working, and of the highest integrity.

Raised in a military family, Ms. Dalton worked her way through college and law school. She served many years prosecuting crimes for he late Norm Maleng. She also engaged in private practice, focusing on real estate law, families, and small businesses, and, most recently, defending the accused.

My job as a Court of Appeals judge is to review superior court trials for errors. A trial that follows constitutional and other legal standards requires a well-prepared fair prosecutor or plaintiff’s attorney, a vigorous defense attorney, and an experienced judge who can manage a courtroom, jurors, witnesses, rules of evidence, and a wide variety of legal issues and human conditions. Trials involving significant legal errors require remand to the superior court for a new trial, requiring additional resources and delaying final resolution.

Ms. Dalton is the only candidate who has recent and substantial jury trial experience both as a lawyer and as a judge. She has earned the respect of numerous diverse citizens with whom she has come in contact both in the courthouse and as an involved member of our community. She deserves our votes and we need her on the bench. Please join me in marking our November ballots for Jeanette Dalton, Kitsap County Superior Court.

Judge J. Robin Hunt

State Court of Appeals, Division Two

Happy to vote for Phil Rockefeller

I’ve known Phil Rockefeller for over 30 years and have had the opportunity to realize what a fine person he is, and how fortunate we are to have him representing us in Olympia. Amongst his desirable traits is his tenacious attention to details on the many bills he must address.

He has experience in the regional office of the Federal Department of Health, Education and Welfare and as the former regional commissioner of education, as well as having been a previous governor’s point man on educational matters,.

This background provides him with an exceptional awareness of many issues confronted in his current role as our senator in the 23rd District.

I’m pleased to give him my vote

Bob Campbell

Harborview Drive

Soft mailers are insulting, disgusting

I’d like to express my opinion of the political mailers Charlie Bermant (Port Orchard Independent) reported on in his recent column, “Abel, Angel backed by ‘soft money’ mailers.”

These mailers are disgusting and I believe they are very damaging to our American election process.

Not only do they insult hard working public servants but they are poisoning the well for future candidates who want to seek public office. Who would want to run for office and subject themselves and their families to such defamation and humiliation?

Any candidate on whose behalf these insulting mailers were distributed should publicly apologize not only to the candidate whose honor has been so brutally maligned, but also to the public for filling our mail boxes with this garbage!

Angel and Abel both should immediately notify the Citizens Action Group and the State Democratic Party and whoever else is sending out this trash that they will not tolerate such reprehensible tactics.

The party chairmen should do likewise. Democratic Chairman Carl Olson hit the nail right on the head: “Silence implies consent.” And recipients who are outraged by these mailers should return them to the sender with harsh words of rebuke.

The only way to stop these “dirty tricks” is when good people in both parties refuse to tolerate them and refuse to fund them!

I think I can speak for many who believe these mailers are very damaging not only to their “intended” target but to the “unspoken” candidate the mailer is supporting We all know who that candidate is. And we all know the “facts” are grossly misrepresented and border on lies.

When citizens donate money to political organizations they should find out if this is how their money is being spent. Is this how you want your donated political dollars spent? Your dollars could be working to get a candidate defeated in Ft. Dodge, Iowa.

An anti-Angel piece I received came from “Citizens for Change” out of Wichita, Kan. What business has Wichita Kansas got meddling in our Kitsap County elections?

Vivian Henderson

Port Orchard

Islanders support Charlotte Garrido

Many citizens on Bainbridge Island may not realize that an important vote we cast this year is for the commissioner representing South Kitsap

County (as well as for one who represents us in North Kitsap). Ten percent of our property taxes goes to Kitsap County, but due to the high property values here, this turns out to be 20 percent of the cash the county collects in property taxes. Among other activities, these funds support the court system, jails, the auditor and the assessor (reminder, property taxes are due.)

For good representation at the county level we recommend Charlotte Garrido for South Kitsap Commissioner.

Her opponent, Tim Matthes, was past vice president of the Kitsap Alliance of Property Owners, an anti-environmental organization now suing the county.

Please vote for Charlotte Garrido.

Vince Mattson, Charles Schmid,

Connie Waddington

Bainbridge Island

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