It all comes down to the race inside

"We're tired of writing endorsements.We're tired of scripted debates and cynical campaign ads on television, tired of achievements trumped up, voting records distorted, shortcomings blown all out of proportion.And we're really, really tired of the thousands of meaningless campaign signs cluttering up local roadsides - an unhappy irony, we think, that the road to our collective future could be so ugly.So we've decided that since most readers have already made up their minds how they're going to vote Nov. 7, we're dropping out of the madness altogether. For the rest of this campaign season, we resolve: no more endorsements. "

  • Wednesday, October 25, 2000 8:00pm
  • News

“We’re tired of writing endorsements.We’re tired of scripted debates and cynical campaign ads on television, tired of achievements trumped up, voting records distorted, shortcomings blown all out of proportion.And we’re really, really tired of the thousands of meaningless campaign signs cluttering up local roadsides – an unhappy irony, we think, that the road to our collective future could be so ugly.So we’ve decided that since most readers have already made up their minds how they’re going to vote Nov. 7, we’re dropping out of the madness altogether. For the rest of this campaign season, we resolve: no more endorsements.We did, though, want to call readers’ attention to one race that’s been largely overlooked by the press. The district represents Bainbridge Island and surrounding areas; the issues crop up in various contexts, although not always in the same contest.One candidate in this race drives an SUV, but finds himself annoyed by the number of similar vehicles in his way. Give me more freeways! he says. The other candidate rides the bus sometimes, and has neighbors who do too, and sees value in maintaining such programs for those can’t afford cars – or who’d just as soon not compete with the first candidate for lane space.One candidate likes to play the stock market and the lottery, and believes those would be a good model for the Social Security program. The other believes there’s an economic floor below which the nation’s elderly should not be allowed to slip, and that’s why they call it security, not risk.One believes we’d all be safer if more people carried firearms; if a few innocent people get shot as a result, well, what the heck – that’s why we have the death penalty. The other is rather saddened by all the killing, both on the street and sponsored by the state.One dislikes public school teachers and their unions, and thinks more kids ought to be in parochial schools anyway; the other wonders how anyone’s kids will learn anything at all, when the best teachers leave to find other jobs that actually pay.One demands the right to unfettered use of their land, regardless of what’s done to the environment. The other notes that there’s more to the waters of Puget Sound than the pretty surface, and thinks the critters swimming around out of sight might warrant some consideration, too.One hates taxes with a passion, and is confident that most people agree; the other isn’t wild about taxes either, but sees them, paradoxically, as driven by the public’s own demand for services.One favors the randomness of the market – freedom! initiative! – and finds the very concept of growth management to be an oxymoron; the other recognizes the inevitability of change, but wishes it could be a bit better organized.One candidate feels the pressure of the neighbors and the world pushing in on them, and pushes back to get a little more space. The other believes the only real frontiers left to tame are the ones between ourselves.Says one: I trust the people, not the government.The other hangs on to the silly old notion that the government is the people.The candidates in this bellweather race are actually fairly well known, and are named Me and We.Okay, one last endorsement: We’ll go with We. “

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