02 January 2009

Questions for Thurston County Commissioner Position #3 Candidates

Below is an edited (mainly for clarity and strength) version of an email letter I sent to 11 Candidates for County Commissioner. These Candidates are: Corinne Tobeck, Ed Crawford, Erik Landass, Gayle Broadbent, Jack Turner, Jeff Dickison, Karen Valenzuela, Richard Emde, Russ Lehman, Susan Bogni, and Walt Jorgensen. More information on these candidates, including their application for Office of Commission: Commissioner District #3 — Applicants | Thurston County Democrats

Two changes are in square brackets (i.e. *[]) and italicized or striked through. Some minor changes in punctuation from the original letter are not indicated.

Here's the letter:
To: Candidates for Thurston County Commissioner Position #3

From: Robert F. W. Whitlock
[address redacted]
Olympia, Thurston County, Washington

Friday, January 2nd, 2009

Dear Candidates for County Commissioner Position #3,

Greetings and I hope that this message finds all of you to be well in the new year. I have a question relating to your candidacies for the Office of Commissioner. The question relates to environmental policy: I am deeply concerned about the grievous harm and destruction—essential[ly] acts of violence—that this society, of which this community is part, is causing, and committing against the natural world.

My question is: If you are elected to the Office of Commissioner, would you—and if so, how would you—govern in a way that will move the community substantively and expeditiously toward a harmonious (non-destructive, life-serving) and truly sustainable relationship with both natural and human-made environments?

Please tell me what specific policies that you believe will be the most important, both in terms of protecting ecosystems from human-caused degradation, and also in terms of ameliorating existing harms and damages (e.g. global warming/climate disruption, extinction of species/loss of biodiversity, invasive species, water earth and air pollution, poverty, economic and social inequality/inequity/injustice/prejudice/discrimination, etc., et al.). [—that are already on the record.]

For example, to emphasize the creation of a truly local, benign, sustainable and life-serving economy that would be based virtually entirely on locally sourced and renewable raw materials, as well as local means for production/manufacture (everything from food, to clothing, to shelter, to education and entertainment.) I envision a vertically integrated local economy capable of meeting the basic needs of every one in the local community. The economic vision I have is for a community that is ecologically benign, as well as [socially and economically] equitable and just. Is this a vision that you share?

Thank you and best wishes,

Berd Whitlock
[email redacted]
[phone redacted]

P.S. In their applications, I could not detect email addresses for either candidates Tobeck or Landaas. I was able to find one for Ms. Tobeck via an Internet search, but I am unsure if it is a working address. I have telephoned and voice-mailed Mr. Landaas, to request his email address, and I will forward this message to him as soon as I am able.
Additional apology to Ms. Tobeck, whose email I failed to detect in the cover letter of her application.

Also [3:55pm]: Mr. Landaas just returned my call to notify me of his e-mail address.

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