Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Identity Crisis

This is a long post. Sorry, but the topic is a bit complicated. Thanks for tuning in.

One thing that the 2016 US Presidential Election has shown the world is that Americans are having an identity crisis. Shall I narrow this? Nominal American Christians (70%) are having notable identity crisis. Shall I go further? Evangelical, born again leaders and laity (30%) are having a shattering identity crisis.

Jesus Christ told his followers to make learners wherever they went. He gave them a message that turned the Roman world upside down a few short years after his death and resurrection, supplanting the lucrative market place pantheon of demi-gods with flesh and blood, still living, community benefiting saints.

What were some key principles that accomplished this?
Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth,”
was enlarged with
call to remembrance the former days, in which, after you were illuminated, you endured a great fight of afflictions…made a gazingstock both by reproaches and afflictions…took joyfully the spoiling of your goods, knowing in yourselves that you have in heaven a better and an enduring substance.”

Early Christians invested in local community with abandon and grace, not demanding a reward from their fellows, but being confident of a reward in the after life. This was a tactic that was irrepressible by their foes.

Centuries later, a church whose identity had shifted into empire, not charitable holiness, was turned upside down by reformers, who again made learners of the serfs and tradesmen that bishops and princes had used and discarded like face tissues. The reformers got down and dirty with “sinners” like Jesus did.

Leading reformers searched the Holy Bible for clues on successful governance and market place ideology. A stream of Biblically sifted public polity insights from the Hugenots in France, to the dissenters in England and Scotland, to the Pilgrims and Puritans in America, led through town hall governance to the Old World Order defying American Revolution and Constitution.

These past Christian pioneers in governance, over centuries, faced down tremendous opposition, even amid death of many of their number. In the Anglosphere—England, America, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, even India, the fruits of Christian governance multiplied. At the same time, as Christians indulged themselves, increasingly giving up on earning and saving to give, [aka John Wesley], progressive dons stepped into the void, and the socialist seeds of Voltaire, Rousseau, Hegel, Marx, Darwin and Sangor spread quickly in fertile soil.

Fast forward to today. Have you tracked the 2016 national evangelical debate over #NeverTrump? Have you have seen the parade of conservative and evangelical media, church, business and educational leaders who are staggering and roaring and moaning and sweating in the tug-o-war over a “binary choice” vs a third candidate protest vote?

The “elephant in the room” is that Christian “salt” has lost its influence on America. Whether by external, strategic anti Christian driven activism in the last 200 years (Mann, Dewey, Dawkins), or by internal supplanting of the sacrificial cross life by materialism and hedonism (Presley, Bakker, Driscoll, Sproul Jr., Duggar Jr.), Christians seem to be suddenly discovering their values are mocked and they are targeted for silencing, with fewer and fewer predictable political champions for Christian concerns.

As long as there was an “evil” political opponent, the nagging question of failing larger influence was quenched by short term, feel good, united posturing in political campaigns for “prosperity”, best seen in races against socialist, tax and spend candidates with Leninist/Frankfurt Marxist ideologies, or Wilsonian quasi-Christian progressive bona fides.

The current reality of two morally bankrupt candidates for president, exacerbated by media “reality show” news bombs in the last weeks of the presidential campaign has prompted many evangelical leaders to begin to jump from their burning ivory towers.

These “thought leaders” do not want to walk the gauntlet of government with morally “failed” leaders. Rather than scrutinize the failed “saltiness” of their own systematic theologies and denominational orthopraxies, as seen in lost influence in media and public educational venues, they plan to go AWOL from voting. They appear to hope that washing their hands of Trump and/or Clinton, will convince others they cannot be associated with any part of what has or is to come.

Why are Christian thought leaders now in meltdown over Donald Trump? Did not Jesus tell his disciples to find the “worthy” man (a locally recognized leader) in each village and bring help and blessings to that village? Was not Jesus’ test for involvement with secular leaders their openness to receiving help, and not their prior virtue?

Did not the patron apostle of Reformed Soteriology, Paul, say that the first communal priority of any church was prayers for holders of public office? And included in those prayers were even governors where power came often by corruptions of dagger and purse, not observable purity?

Identity drives choices of association. If a Christian identifies with Jesus Christ, with a view of sure reward in the life to come, he or she will not fear loss or shaming in this life, even forced association with one like Donald Trump. Jesus Christ said the soul of man was eternal, but the comforts and shout outs of this life were transitory and should be rated secondary and disposable.

When Christians adore loan and credit ratings, and despise having children by using contraceptives, they have lost their salt. When Christian thought leaders can rave and admire sex and violence laden story plots in Game of Thrones episodes, they have little ground to criticize Clintonesque peddling of influence or Trumpian pimping of fleeting pelvic and pocketbook pleasures.

Christian, what will you do when you wake up the morning after November 8, 2016? Will you roll up your sleeves and seek to influence public policy with grace? Or will you extend your abstention from voting and disappear from the public square for the next four years?

On the local level, will you shut your ears, eyes, and mouth to the skewing of local school board policy because the school board members are all hardened progressive activists and you cannot not find a sympathetic ear?

At the state level, will you refuse to vote for either Republican Washington State Treasurer candidate, because one has received funds from Planned Parenthood, and the other funds from SEIU?

This identity meltdown can only be addressed at the level of personal saltlessness. When our good works as Christians are funded by walking our own capital through hard work and savings and answered prayer to God, rather than prayers to bank loan managers, then we will begin to have an identity with clout.

When our educational guidelines promote wisdom and discard folly, when we can equally accept or disdain the shifting praise of elite educators, businessmen or media stars, even Christian superstar theologians, then we will become at the same time stable local community leaders and radical world change agents.

When we abandon “Beach Boys to Rap pelvic libido culture” in our recreation and youth groups and worship services, then perhaps we will obey the still small voice that builds lasting foundations of peacemaking that over ride human bankruptcy with God’s wisdom and workings.

Until then…the saltless meltdown and identity crisis of conservatives and evangelicals will only continue to grow.


I voted for Trump.
I voted against the EMS levy.
I voted against I-1501.

Last Tuesday, I took the day to testify in Olympia on solutions to improve the Growth Management Act, where I suggested that that the Growth Management Hearings Board be repopulated with one industry qualified specialist specific to each of the 14 elements. I would further suggest that these positions be elected, not appointed.

I voted for DeWolf, Zempel and Larsen for State Supreme Court. The Hirst v Whatcom County ruling should be a wake up call for all Washington citizens on progressive strongarm takeover tactics. Saul Alinsky is a viper, but so is Mitch McConnell. Property rights is Life 101. In the Bible it comes right after the 10 commandments (Exodus 20-23). Private philanthropy (vs government funding for everything) is Life 201.

In this above list, if Trump is the only thing that you as a Christian or “conservative” can talk knowledgeably about, you need to get out from under your rock. Please don’t lecture me about being judgmental of sinners when these observations above come after six years of quite close involvement in local and state public policy issues.


Thursday, February 11, 2016

You Will Be Made To Care

What happens when an ordinary family gets involved in public policy and elections at the city and county level? That is our story for the last four years.

What happens when a tell it all book is about to be published, and you can have a small part in spreading its message around? That is the focus of this blog post.

Whatcom Works has been a blog that the Kirk family (mostly Dad, me that is) has used to chronicle our efforts, observations, hopes and frustrations over the last 30 months of involvement in public policy service in Whatcom County, Washington.

We have been privileged to do a lot of door belling in GOTV, to work at phone banks, to provide live streaming services for several debates. Some of us have worked as campaign media coordinators, fund raising banquet assistants, website and social media support staff, and one daughter is currently session aide for our State Senator Doug Ericksen.

Some of us have gone to dozens of meetings at the Whatcom County Council, Whatcom County Planning Commission, Public Utility District #1, Farm Bureau, Whatcom Cattleman's Association, WRIA 1 Water Board, Whatcom CAPR board, and more. There have also been many bull sessions with various conservative activists. We have worked on policy language, having some passed into policy, and some rejected, even by other conservatives.

A year ago, my daughter and I flew to Colorado and California to take training that would facilitate recruitment and deployment of interested local citizens as observers and reporters of routine business in the dozens of committees that carry out the business of Whatcom County government. Public policy activists have to go to meetings, and what if that work load could be delegated to dozens of like minded peers, giving them a chance to taste, explore and sharpen their skills in local governance?

Recently, we assessed our public policy involvements versus family responsibilities in home schooling and home maintenance. Volunteer service may be given freely, but someone has to pick up the tab for living. So, we have not been going to many meetings recently. For a number of months, Whatcom Works has been silent.

But there is something I really want to write about! Someone has written a new book that addresses the pressures I have outlined above. This soon to be published book also has a lot more to say. A whole lot more.

Conservatives and Christians in Washington State are hard to shock. Perhaps, in Washington State,  highly unchurched and agnostic, we have become like the proverbial frog in the kettle. Oh, yah, another case of abusing freedom of speech. So what! What’s on for sports tonight? Maybe next year we can elect a governor who is not in the pocket of Big Labor, the Eco Fascists, and the LGBT community.

Erick Erickson and Bill Blankschaen, living in the far away state of Georgia, have written a book that you really need to read. Actually, that you really need to buy and read. Actually, that you really need to pre-order now so a lot more people can hear about a very useful book that is having a high profile rollout. And, a book that you can discuss with your friends and church leaders and pastors.

I have read this book. (I am not getting money for writing this review.) I have read some reviews of this book. Frankly, it is a lifeline book. Especially for those who are not a part of the chattering class. You may know who I mean. Political activists who go to conferences and link to each others blogs and support each other well may not need this book. But those of us who are in the trenches and alone and wondering where the cavalry has gone need a lifeline. This is one!

Two years ago, our family attended a home school conference. One of the keynote speakers, a real “Mr. Big”, spent an hour outlining the plans of the LGBT community to “make us care” and fear and serve them. It was very depressing. He ended by saying he really did not have any answers or advice for us. Since then, I have heard he has taken a seminary service post in Africa. Cool for him!

When you read this book, you need to get to the last part. The first two thirds outlines the dire straits Christians are facing over the “pelvic wars”. It is painful. Really painful!  You will meet outstanding Christian conservatives, in business, public service, non profits who have been targeted and taken to the cleaners by LGBT activists and their friends in the judiciary, education and media.

But I would really like to give a shout out to the last few chapters. The development sequence is real. The book champions “resurgent” faith and conservatism. For you Biblicists, think “overcomer”, as in Revelation chapters 2 and 3. Think finding and serving the worthy man, as in Matthew 10:7-20. Even John the Baptist was granted resurgence when he was pinned down in Herod’s prison.

Our family has found the authors’ sequence of developing resurgence spot on. First is community. We have met many other Christians and conservatives from a very diverse range of persuasions. And we clicked with them. The problem is the conservative activist community is relatively very small!

So, we go to “school”. As individuals (secondly) we enlarge our parameters, we broaden our information base and theology, we hone our skills. Yet, solitary activists here and there, working in ones and twos, are still solitary.

So, thirdly, we add the family. Get the children, grandparents, and aunts and uncles involved. Suddenly, a multiplier comes into play that is huge. And has tremendous import for decades to come!

Here is where it gets dicey. When, fourthly, the church is challenged to be resurgent in the public square, our experience is that it frequently acts like the LGBT community, striking back, holding tightly to its “little earthly store, nor sending thy messengers unto some distant shore”. Coping with sour faith community responses takes patience. Organized, funded groups of Christians are slowly waking up to see that they ARE being targeted and made to care. Having this book on the church leader’s desk or in the church library will be very timely.

Lastly, the resurgent citizen is one who is not just about influencing culture by top down elected influence, but who rubs elbows with their progressive neighbors, who defuses bias and gives gifts that influence culture. They do this person by local person. The resurgent citizen is salt and light, regardless of their political connections or lack thereof. And, since elections do have consequences, resurgent citizens become engaged in elections and or public policy as they serve in the larger community..

The framers of the American constitution were largely Biblicists. It is no wonder that the LGBT community has targeted Christians, champions of freedom of speech and property rights, above all others. Christians care and don’t back down. The Christian Bible is a fountain of freedom and public policy wisdom. That is why socialists, communists and fascists have hated it, and hate the American Constitution. (Disclaimer: the US Constitution does not supercede the Christian Bible). Now, the maladies of socialism are content for another post.

So, have I convinced you yet? Go pre order, and access the bonus gifts. This is a good thing. Thanks for coming back to Whatcom Works and reading this post.

JK (John Kirk)

Monday, June 29, 2015

Hoping For Nothing

Baltimore burns. Charleston prays. Two worldviews are at war in American communities.

Destroying to gain versus Gaining the destroyer.

Do these faraway realities touch Whatcom County? There is that takes for itself, and loses. There is that quietly gives amid pain, and gains.

What attitude rebuilds community after wars of aggression? It is “Hoping for nothing,” passing on to the next generation a legacy of selflessness in the face of ultimate sacrifice.

It is the ruler who submits himself to the rule of law.

It is the elected representative who sees community strife not as a shortselling moment to advantage his friends, but as a refinery that turns disparate metals into strong alloys.

It is the soldiering businessman who puts his life and business in the cross hairs of the bitter game of chance that is cultural war, tough love, risking the bullets of market retribution.

County Council has poured gasoline on local public policy again. Whatcom County’s Home Rule Charter has been made a burning rag in an ideological tug of war. Locals can go and watch the circle of fire Tuesday night, July 7, 2015 at the County Council Chambers.

What gives?  What is really going on? Do not the community fathers do all things well?

Frankly, after months of paying relatively close attention to the Charter Review process, and after working on two proposed charter amendments,  I have come to the conclusion that some leaders are ships passing in the night, and other leaders are privateers, ready to board and pillage.

Who have been the actors on the Charter Review stage? More importantly, who are the Geppetos, working the strings out of sight?

1. Elected leaders: the county executive and the county council.
2. Career city and county employees: managers of finance and natural resources, technical experts.
3. State and Federal bureaucrats: Department of Ecology, Conservation District, Environmental Protection Agency, Puget Sound Partnership, Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife, US Army Corps of Engineers…
4. Non profit, “third sector” ideologues, staffers, activists, lawyers: Whatcom Land Trust, ReSources, Futurewise, Sustainable Connections, Salish Community Solutions… oh, and the local Food Bank. Cathy Lehman could give you a list of twenty or more “key local players” she represents, including Tom Steyer.
5. Business owners and investors: Corporate globalists, small time entrepreneurs, farmers…
6. Media apparatchiks: Bored reporters, biased editors and owners, lucre seeking advertising agents.
7. Facilitators: legal counsels, clerks, facilities owners.
8. I almost forgot. The fifteen elected Charter Review commissioners.

Of course, if you’re reading this, you probably know that the major bones of charter contention are:

1) Should  the whole county vote for all elected council races, or should county districts have partitioned voting, each district voting for two positions plus one at large position.

2) Should the Whatcom County Council be prevented from reversing any ballot approved charter amendments detailing voter districting formulas in Whatcom County?

County wide voting appears to favor candidates that appeal to Bellingham’s clientele, and district partitioned voting appears to favor candidates that appeal to the non Bellingham clientele.

The elephant in the room that most of the above actors do not want to deal with is the growing cultural divide between Bellingham and the rest of the county. Or is it a growing cultural war? Do the grant and government funding models that pay many Whatcom County salaries bring people together? Or enlarge cultural ghettos with protective taboos and suspicions?

After the decision by the county council to place four proposed amendements on the ballot, largely mirroring and countering the likely charter amendments of the charter review committee, it is again obvious that the dialogue and mediation that brings diverse groups together is not happening.

Listening to citizen testimony during the public comment period is says it all. County “conservatives” speak of disenfranchisement and the need to restore parity. City “progressives” push back against “power plays”, against being forced to share the public square with conservatives. Horrors!

Why is there such a heightened sense of battle lines? Why has the county council intervened so precipitously? What back room deals have been brokered to sacrifice predetermined county groups on the altars of business status quo and progressive cultural fadism.

There are two books, among others, that shape today’s political plays. The Prince, by Nicholas Machiavelli, and Rules for Radicals by Saul Alinsky.

George Bush (R) and Bill Clinton (D) know The Prince well. Dedicated to Lorenzo di Medici, the rules of The Prince led to the St Bartholomew’s Day massacre of emerging Hugenot Protestants at the hands of Catholic queen Catherine di Medici, a generation after the book was written. In the power plays of corporations, triangulation still makes and breaks men and their fortunes.

Hilary Clinton (D) and Barack Obama (D) know Rules for Radicals well. A protégé of Frank Nitti of Al Capone fame, Saul Alinsky absorbed mob methods, then modeled them, framed with legal cover for the New Left before his death several decades ago. Behind the disarming smile of progressive non profit advocacy is a cold dagger and the tightly clenched fist that seeks power.

Is Jack Louws a The Prince man? Is Carl Wiemer a Rules for Radicals man? I can not say for sure. I could try to interview them, but to what end? Would they tell me their secrets? What about Ken Mann? Pete Kremen? Rud Browne? What about the circle of power brokers in natural resources such as Steven Jilks at the PUD? Or George Boggs at the Conservation District? Or the leaders of ReSources, Whatcom Land Trust, Futurewise, and Sustainable Connections? What about the various bureaucrats embedded in city, county, state and federal agencies, lusting for the grant streams fed by the growing national debt?

The point is this. If the sharing of spoils in The Prince type proposals coming out of the County Executive Office do not pacify the power hungry Alinsky radicals on the County Council and  local “green” non profit boards, the radicals and the triangulators will end up eating each other and us, leaving a burnt earth legacy. Just review the fractured path of the proposed Whatcom County Jail.

So, will Bellingham be Baltimore? Or will it be Charleston? Will we burn each other with anger? Or will we face down haters with determined, rebuilding openess?

Non profit agencies? Who grew the legacy of the non profit tradition? Francis of Assissi? Bernard of Clairvaux? William Carey of India? The Salvation Army in the slums of London? Lighthouse Mission? Catholic Community Services? These were and are people who largely “hope for nothing”. But, wherever there are givers, there are pretenders.

The “green” non profits of America are a different breed. Flying on the coat tails of good will of past generations, the current enviro activists talk kindly, but underneath the smiles clench fists of green, sustainable power. Their non profit vehicle is temporary, until government is fully socialist and communitarian. Their advocacy for first nations peoples destroys both the tribal youth and their own youth. Bake into their cake a fascist flavor of markets with triple bottom lines, and the world is redefined into a gray, grim Orwellian nanny state.

Churches? Redefining themselves as Lyndon Johnson 501c3 non profits, many churches act like monkeys, clutching peanuts in a gourd trap, waiting to be captured and eaten. American courts are systematically removing the hedge of honor increasingly saltless American churches have enjoyed. Persecution in the public square will unleash self persecuting churches, but until then, public policy is piously delegated to “others” by a majority of Christians. Most Christians are more concerned about paying back their loans on their single family homes, about pushing their children to get degrees from socialist educators who turn their Christian legacy of “hoping for nothing” on its head.

Educators? College appears now to be where environmentalist activists first learn to write grants, then maybe do a little work—not really hoping for nothing.

What is hoping for nothing?

It is delighting to give rather than get, trusting that the Creator of all men and means will repay sacrificial service in His time.

It is deferring immediate gratification for much larger, delayed benefits.

It is choosing to give, after working to earn, and leading others to work to earn.

It may be waiting long for the siren songs of materialism and power, progressive or capitalist, to be replaced by hoping for nothing, by giving away, yet ultimately gaining much, much more.

Baltimore or Charleston? Which will Whatcom County and Bellingham be?


Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Please Walk in and Vote at the Conservation District for Larry Helm, Supervisor

There is an important election for Whatcom Conservation District Supervisor, 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. on Tuesday, Mar 10, 2015, at the CD Office, 6975 Hannegan Road.

Five Conservation District Supervisors  provide board level oversight of the Whatcom County Conservation District [CD] and its approximately 12 employees. Typically, Whatcom County CD provides most of its services to local farmers. Two supervisors are appointed by the Washington State governor, and three are locally elected.

Any registered voter, urban or rural, may vote in this CD election.

Whatcom County is different. Most Washington State Conservation Districts have very low profile elections for Supervisor positions, with farmers casting 100 or less ballots per district to choose their supervisors.

Three years ago, this particular Whatcom County Supervisor position election had over 3000 votes cast, with the winner’s margin being approximately 60 votes.  In that election, the Bellingham environmentalist community almost elected their candidate to the CD board, but were defeated last minute by a large number of rural and small town voters who voted in person at the CD office on election day. On election day, more than 600 people walked in to vote at the CD office, mostly for Larry Helm.

Bad Cows + Rain = Big Money. Why does Whatcom County have this unusually high turnout? Why is control of a farm service agency being sought by non farm environmental activists?

Environmentalist groups pay their leaders and staff out of federal, state and local grants that address environmental problems. More problems mean more grants, and that means more “envirocrat” jobs.

Cow (dairy and beef)  farms in Whatcom County are targeted as the alleged primary culprit for varying levels of coliform pollution in tidal shellfish beds. Bellingham’s large group of enviro activists want to use the CD to promote their agenda, giving the “public” and the Lummi nation the “benefit” of attacking farmers with cows in Whatcom County.

To compound this, in the last months, the Whatcom Conservation District has been initiating plans to become the service agency managing storm-water runoff grants and programs for the City of Bellingham. De-prioritizing farm services for city services looks like a good business money move. However, farmers may become second class citizens in their own service agency.

Storm-water runoff management is a very lucrative grant stream. Your taxes administer and salary technicians with vast government oversight of rainwater running off your property. There is lots of rain in Whatcom County. Again, this money is coveted by envirocrats and increasing numbers of university grads seeking jobs in line with their environmental degrees.

Grant streams are also the lifeblood of the Conservation District. The under the radar issue in this election is direction and prioritization of grants. Should the CD get any and all grants possible, such as EPA and Puget Sound Partnership urban and farm storm-water control grants, or focus its grant writing towards less lucrative farm service issues such as ditch cleaning, and soil and manure management services.

Local farmers do not want EPA grant strings impacting their farm plans. Period. Grants come with strings. The EPA and other state and county agencies offer large funding incentives to farmers who will let them move closer and closer into overseeing farm management plans.

As well, farmers are facing increasing fees and mitigation costs by Whatcom County Conservation District and Whatcom County Planning Department. CD technicians have a lot of power to levy fines and rulings. These technicians are currently under significant criticism for allowing environmental activist pressure to skew their farm site assessments against small farmers and small farm profitability. Farmers need a supervisor who will quickly and strongly address rules over reach when it happens.

Wildfowl. It is a fact that various technicians in state and county storm-water runoff monitoring positions are refusing to calculate how much coliform pollution comes from wild fowl such as ducks, geese and swans. Large water fowls, such as geese, produce 5 pounds of poop per day. 500 swans could deposit 2500 pounds of excrement close to a drainage ditch in one day, and then the cows get blamed.

In spite of this, Fish and Wildlife officials routinely refuse state funding grants to help them test coliform food source DNA to identify what coliform came from cows or birds. Cow farmers rightly feel unfairly targeted as the main coliform pollution source when wildfowl poop on fields by ditches is totally ruled out by activists and technicians. It’s the “bad cow” grant stream, stupid.

No one escapes. This is not just an issue for dairy or beef farmers. It is an issue for any small acreage family who has animals. It is an issue for home owners in towns and cities. Not only has the EPA put rules in place to regulate the puddles of rain on your driveway, but when farm neighbors are subject to the whims of urban regulators, the resulting uncertainty also hurts town and city businesses that supply farms.

The incumbent for this position is Larry Helm, a small beef farmer in the Squalicum Creek watershed east of Squalicum Mountain. Larry has consistently resisted the urban grant stream influences, trying to focus CD services to farmers. He runs a clean farm with minimum stream buffers, and with stream coliform levels at one quarter of the current pollution threshold level.  Even so, Larry is being misrepresented and smeared as a polluter by environmental activists supporting his opponent.

The issue is not whether Larry’s opponent sells locally grown vegetables at a roadside stand, but which former public official can be trusted to use grants to serve farmers first, not the salaries of non profits and public officials, and the multiplying rules police that stifle farm economies in Whatcom County.

Remember packing houses? How many new packing houses have come to Whatcom County in this last year after the envirocrats worked over packing house policy?

Whatcom County Farm Bureau, the GOP, and the Cattleman’s Association have endorsed Larry. His opponent is supported by the Democrat party circle. Democrat voters from Alabama Hill and the Columbia District have heavily responded to Larry’s opponent’s doorbell campaign to use mail in voting.  Do you get the picture? Where might Futurewise and ReSources and Whatcom Land Trust be in this?

Floodplains by Design is being cued up. With characteristic doublespeak, an extensive program grant application by Whatcom Land Trust targeting prime farmland for wilding in the South Fork area has been filed with the Washington State Department of Ecology. Note the promises that prime farmland is only going to be moved away from the river, not taken away. Really!! Do the farmers of Whatcom County need a friend of farmers on the CD board of supervisors, or a friend of progressive, Democrat, urban environmentalists?

Note the letters of support in the appendix from Whatcom County Public Works (Paula Cooper),  Whatcom County Parks (Mike McFarlane), and the Nooksack Tribe (Bob Kelly)

GreenLinks is here! The Squalicum Creek watershed, from downtown Bellingham out to the Rome area on SR542, is being set up for an intensively managed water runoff program called Green Links, jointly administered by the City of Bellingham and Futurewise, the recent litigant against Whatcom County’s exempt well policies. Would not the Conservation District better the public interest by electing a supervisor who would check and balance intensive environmental advocacy (salmon are the emotional hot button in the above joint venture) rather than smiling while urban eco activists collectively rezone the Squalicum Creek watershed.

Larry’s challenger in this election is an Everson area resident who worked for the City of Bellingham Public Works, and runs a summer time vegetable stand from her garden. As a past Democratic party candidate, she is most notable recently in her loss to Vincent Buys for District 42 State Representative. Larry’s opponent has benefited from considerable resources to door bell neighborhoods in Bellingham environmentalist hot zones, people who are NOT farmers, and adversarial to most current Whatcom farmers.

Monday, February 9, 2015 was the cutoff date to request a mail in ballot from the Conservation District office, which manages this election apart from the Whatcom County Auditor’s Office. As of that date, over 3600 ballots had been requested, most to Bellingham addresses. Ballots may also be cast by people who walk in and vote in the Conservation District office on March 10, 2015. Last year, 600 people voted in person at the CD office.

Walk in and vote. If you don’t want to see farmers, big or small, significantly damaged by Bellingham eco activists, please take the time to go to the CD office in person and vote for Larry Helm on Tuesday, March 10, 2015. His opponent may have a very pleasant demeanor, but her handlers and supporters are determined to turn local cows into “the” environmental scapegoat and grant stream. You can read their words here, and here, and here.

Please pass this walk in voting information on to people in your rural and small farm town circles. This election will determine who manages CD grant programs, urban shell fish guardians or farmers. Your tax money, your rural farm profitability, and your freedom to manage your own storm water runoff costs is at stake. This is a very pressing issue, even for those living in town lots.

Please walk in and vote for Larry Helm for CD commissioner at the Conservation District office at Hinotes Corner, (Pole and Hannegan),  6975 Hannegan Road, 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m., Tuesday, March 10, 2015.

Thank you,

John Kirk
Whatcom Works

Post Script:

Do you see the shell game?  The straw man here is having to choose between shell fish (or salmon) and cows. That is just the current version of a much larger shell game, using the Marxist dialectic to establish fascist communitarian socialism for nihilist narcissists. Chew on that for a while.

In other words—

One party (globalist dialectical power brokers) gets two other parties (cow farmers and salmon/shellfish environmentalists) to fight, and then lives well off the two weakened parties.
Collecting juicy fees to manage perpetual reparations (socialism) perpetuates the outcomes of the fights.
Rules that tax “offender's” profits (fascism) return more than taking their assets (communism).
The expectation of no ultimate consequences for making such a mess (nihilism) trains people to only talk, think, act and care about their own desires and comforts (narcissism).

Thus, a key milestone in the enviro terrorism program is ruined “trust” between urbanites and farmers. The key movers are quiet, eco activist, grant funded, power base building community organizers who do public policy by Alinsky rules—deceive, flatter, fatten, divide—then defund and enslave the middle class (BOTH farmers AND urbanites) before they know what hit them.

A second problem is well meaning, sophomoric urbanites with ruinous ideas for how farm families should run their farms, significant ignorance of how Whatcom County farmers are improving in environmental stewardship, and the gross delusion that heavy regulations on farmers will improve urban outcomes, and never come to be applied to their own free wheeling urban lifestyles.

A third problem may also be farm families, in debt to their eyeballs, whose fewer and fewer children do not want to assume the pressure cooker of large scale farming in a free falling society, parents whose retirement income can only be secured by corporate culture, selling out or hiring in. What stops the free fall? Who will feed you or me, my corporate farmer or urban environmentalist friend, in ten, twenty, forty years?

Really now, How will you get vegetable garden dirt out from under your finger nails?

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Replacing Sam Crawford

Council member Sam Crawford has resigned from county council, effective March 1, 2015. A video of his statement and some of the other council member's responses can be seen here.

There will be time to review council member Crawford's 16 year legacy of public service. There will be time to say, “Thank you!” and ask “Why?”. Sam will become a full time, Westside Building Center manager. Best wishes, Sam!

But what reality presses hard?  A position needs to be filled. The council will choose a replacement. There will be no election. An appointment will be made. If council cannot agree on a replacement in thirty days, the county executive has fifteen days to appoint a person to fill out the balance of Mr. Crawford’s term.

Six elected council persons will either cross swords intractably (remember Bob Kelly), or will collaborate to make an appointment.

What do you expect? How many candidates will apply? How will council members frame their favorites?

Here is my prediction.

There is one determined, progressively aligned council member who heavily supported a progressively aligned District 2 person who lost the race for District 42 State Representative in November, 2014. 

This council member is one of four progressively aligned council members who vote as a progressively aligned bloc on appointments for key council appointed boards. It is highly likely we will see this district 2 council position filled by this district 2 progressively aligned person who was soundly rejected by district 2 voters.


When Bob Kelly resigned, Pete Kremen wisely avoided appointing the progressive favorite who had lost elections two times just before that event. Conservative voters picked Tony Larson a few months later, and the retired Pete Kremen, as a new councilman unseated Larson a year after that.

However, the business world operates bone on bone. Free markets pick winners and losers. Canny business men buy low and sell high, and delight in extending their business reach. Patronage works. The only problem is that an unbridled drive to “control” ends up destroying both patrons and heirs. Successful public policy thrives, not on bitter force, but on trust built through servant leadership.

Tonight at county council, this same council member pressed very  hard to deny $30,000.00 for WRIA 1 planning unit quarterly operations. He said to wait for the state to fund this unfunded mandate. This is chump change. $20,000.00 for a two day, one time water seminar was freely given to WRIA 1 naysayers in the recent past.

This was nothing but a thinly disguised effort to crush dissent and irregularity. Rud Browne proposed a new “water council” that would supersede the WRIA 1 planning unit, an advisory only board totally synchronized by the executive’s office. Bone on bone. Crush “employee” dissent. Fire those who are shouting “fire”.

Tonight, two new, progressively approved persons were appointed to the planning commission, shutting out the reapplying conservative planning commission chair. David Onkels, known for challenging progressive planners and their dogma, with experience and counter balance, was tossed on the trash heap by county council.

Time will tell if the progressive Gang of Four on County Council have shown foresight in appointing only their own ideological kin to the leading Whatcom County advisory boards. Time will tell if the WRIA 1 planning unit’s contrarian instincts truly adds value or just angst to the WRIA 1 Joint Board, which has operated outside the RCW legal framework since 2009.

Time will show who truly can meld
  • fair, big government, mercy minded progressives,    (give to gov't charity)
  • free, big market, justice minded conservatives,        (give to private charity)
  • USING “humble” servant minded leadership.           (invest in adversaries).
It is the model and values of the servant leader Christ on the cross that gave us our western civilization. It is both the progressive AND conservative abandonment of that model for self actuated nihilism in the “new”, Post Modern West that is steadily leading us into a new dark age.

JK, Whatcom Works


Sam Crawford Resigns from Whatcom County Council