Every now and then we are blessed with the voters pamphlet in Washington state. It always makes for an entertaining read because every now and then we get an obscure local government race with 1 ‘serious’ candidate and a bunch of ideologues. I love reading these statements from our hardened libertarian and marxist comrades fighting to be elected to some obscure position. But part of me is a little disappointed at the same time. I want ideologues to be serious about changing the political world they live in, I want them to spark a serious dialogue about the direction of our future even if it starts in a small office.
In this case, the illustrious position is the “Port of Seattle, Commissioner Position No. 2.” The great thing about this race is we have one serious contender, the incumbent Courtney Gregoire, and 2 ideologues. In one corner is a libertarian known as “Goodspaceguy” (no seriously, he legally changed his name), and another is a hardened old Marxist by the name of John Naubert. Of course, turning the page we have Commissioner Position No. 5, which has a total of 9 candidates who apparently fall into the republican/democrat spectrum and write reasonable proposals. But that’s boring because they are all just trying to climb the politics ladder, wake me when it’s over, the No 5 race sucks.
Anyway, back to our more exciting Commission Position No. 2 race.
It may be the case that these gentlemen seek to use the voter’s pamphlet as a springboard to destroy the bourgeoisie and not actually to win this prestigious position. But I operate on the assumption that if these people are attempting to participate in ‘bourgeoisie politics’ then they fundamentally do not advocate the violent overthrow of the state; otherwise they’d be in jail. So I assume that these two candidates actually care about winning the position and slowly steering Seattle politics to become marxist of libertarian. I think that’s very exciting and awesome, I want this kind of debate to be thrust into our nightly news and energize people about the political axioms we rarely ever question.
So I’ll present the original statements by our two candidates, and my re-written version. The hope being that, maybe one day the candidate will google their name and this post will pop up, they’ll read it, and begin to consider more seriously what they could represent in local politics; a dynamic change and potentially the beginning of a different future for Washington.
Socialism: Step 1. Become Port of Seattle Commissioner No. 2, Step 2. Crush the Bourgeoisie
The Socialist Workers Party campaign stands for the interests of the working class against the crisis of the capitalist system.
The fight of the Black Community in Baltimore against police brutality made it impossible for the authorities to sweep the killing of Freddie Gray under the rug.
I support the fight by the ILWU on the docks, Los Angeles port truck drivers for a union, Menzies contract workers fighting for $15 an hour and a union at Sea-Tac airport. McDonald’s and Wal-mart workers are part of the same fight. Rail and oil workers demand safe conditions on the job and in surrounding communities.
The controversy around Shell oil needs to be explained from a working class point of view.
The toilers of the world need electrification, from the U.S. to India. We need light after dark to advance education, culture and political struggle. The reality is that coal and oil are not going away anytime soon.
The fight for more electrification around the world under capitalism must be coupled with a battle for workers control of conditions on the job to protect both land and labor.
Today’s struggles reinforce each other. The farm workers and oil workers support each other in Skagit, County.
Democrats and Republicans and “independents” who trail after them, aim to corral us into bourgeois politics. We need a labor party based on our unions.
We can look to the example of Cuba, where ordinary men and women, took power out of the hands of the capitalist rulers, changing themselves in struggle, and reorganized society based on human needs, not profits.
My campaign is about building a fighting workers movement that ultimately takes power out of the hands of the capitalist class.
I encourage you to read the socialist newsweekly at themilitant. com
This one is the most heartbreaking because I know that socialists can win in Seattle. Stop talking about Cuba, you are running for the port of Seattle commissioner No. 2, not the a state representative. Remove your reference to a socialist newspaper and please, for the love of everything holy, will socialists stop using 1920s socialist language in 2015? The fact is half of Seattle probably agrees with you, if you didn’t write your defense in such short sighted language you have a shot here. I argue that you can still be a hardened socialist and have broad appeal (i.e. maybe even win), if you take this seriously and show a professional face. The socialist message is an easy one, protect workers by supporting unions (popular in Seattle), engage in ‘democracy’ via collective decision making, and support a balance between environmental exploitation and domestic prosperity.
The port of Seattle employs nearly 200,000 workers who are the life blood of our diverse community. Fair wages, safe working conditions, and collective bargaining are the foundation of my fight to protect and represent the interests of our community. This fight is a necessary one because year after year our port comes under attack from corporate interests via Shell oil and self-serving politicians. Democrats and republicans alike continue to infringe upon the rights of unions to represent the hardest working members of our society.
My mission is to protect the balance between utilizing the environment we enjoy and jobs with living wages for those struggling to survive. This balance is only possible when we hold corporations accountable for their actions and engage those who know the port best, its workers, in the decision making process. If elected, I would include collective labor in every decision I make as commissioner; for the workers should be our most trusted source of information.
The workers of Seattle must stand united against the relentless onslaught of profiteering politicians and the ever growing Capitalist oligarchy selling our port to the lowest bidder. The delicate balance between infrastructure development and environmental protection is only possible through collective decision making and not the never ending pursuit of profit.
The purpose of government is to protect its citizens from exploitation and represent your interests in the institutions we depend on. So please join me in my fight to protect Seattle’s dock workers and the greater Seattle community.
Libertarian: Endless Power! Commissioner No 2 Controls the Minimum Wage!… wait a minute…
You the people of King County are the owners of the Port of Seattle, a governmental business, which you subsidize. Are you getting the prosperous King County that you want? Improving the economy and increasing jobs are goals of the port, so let’s make it easier for the long-term unemployed and the homeless and the many, many beggars to get jobs somewhere. These problem people aren’t being hired. The job-destroying minimum wage is forbidding them to work.
The minimum wage law produces unemployed people and homeless people and beggars who pester you and even criminals. We should abolish the job destroying, life-destroying minimum wage and return to supply and demand to set wages and prices. The effect of the minimum wage is to tell poor, unemployed problem people that they may not work. Abolish this unjust law which forbids work for problem people. Defend the right of free problem people to sell their labor at their low market rate. With more people working, problems decrease and the living standard rises. As we work for each other in our exchange economy, prices are largely determined by wages. By abolishing the minimum wage, we can get increased employment and increased production, which will raise the living standard and will lower prices.
Please study economics and listen to radio talk show hosts and read the news. When you vote for big spending candidates, you are voting to increase the waste. Big spenders become big taxers. The bigger the government, the bigger the waste. Government grows. Allocative efficiency falls. Blowing up the people’s Kingdome was wrong. Big taxers who you have elected have not implemented Goodspaceguy’s small government program. Warning: There are several people (some brilliant) who have been writing and producing under Goodspaceguy’s name. Increase election excitement; mail voters’ guide pamphlets early.
Commissioners cannot change the minimum wage… This guy has been running for government positions for decades now, a libertarian can win in this state you just have to pitch it right. Please, do the state a favor and present Libertarians with a professional face. You could be the catalyst of a movement, instead you turned yourself into a joke.
Libertarian Revision-Turn the Tables:
I am a firm believer in opportunity. I want the most vulnerable of our society to have the opportunity of working hard for an honest wage; in the process they get the training they need to provide stable living conditions for their families. The Port of Seattle is being bogged down by self interested groups who want to stop the most vulnerable from providing for their families. Port unions want to control who gets whose job, turning the labor market into a game of who you know, rather than what you know; a dangerous spiral toward oppression for the immigrant community in Seattle. These policies virtually guarantee that those who come here without connections, remain poor and exploited as job opportunities remain non-existent.
As port commissioner, I would support policies which open the Port to bring aboard the best workers, irregardless of what ‘connections’ they have and in the process I would bring down costs and improve our competitiveness against the Port of Tacoma.
I want to treat your tax dollars as a precious resource; to be used wisely and never wasted. We can cut costs, improve competitiveness, and provide job opportunities for all walks of life. I would work together with small and large businesses alike to ensure that the port of Seattle works for Seattle, by providing fulfilling jobs for our community and by protecting the environment we love.
The livelihood of Seattle depends on a thriving port, so please, vote for me to say “Yes” to jobs, opportunities, and the continued well being for our community.