In case you haven't heard, a GRAND BARGAIN has been reached by a mayoral committee tasked with solving Seattle's housing crisis. How grand is this bargain? Stranger writer Ansel Herz is on the show to tell us exactly how grand, and to explain what this bargain's going to mean for apartment dwellers, single-family homeowners, and developers over the next 10 years. Also on the show: Leila Marie Ali, who managed to find $400-a-month rent in the midst of Seattle's housing crisis by living in a tiny, tiny house on wheels. What happens when a city inspector tries to figure out whether a tiny house on wheels deserves a permit, and if so, what kind? Leila tells all. And then Stranger art critic Jen Graves stops by to tell us about the upcoming Seattle Art Fair, borne out of a Paul Allen "fever dream." Plus the music of Girlpool, playing the Capitol Hill Block Party on July 25!
Did that New Yorker article blow up your nice, calm summer, too? You know, the one called "The Earthquake That Will Devastate Seattle"? Feeling freaked out about the article, we haul in Seattle Times science writer Sandi Daughton, a local earthquake expert and the author of Full Rip 9.0, to tell us just how terrified we really should be. Helpfully, Doughton also describes what she's keeping in her earthquake kit these days and tells us what to do when the shaking starts. We also bring Rich Smith back on catch us up on the latest batshit comments from Donald Trump and to tell us what he learned while reading Harper Lee's "new" book, Go Set a Watchman. (Which is really an old, old manuscript that was initially thought of as just a failed early attempt on Lee's way to writing her classic, To Kill a Mockingbird.) Wondering whether you should read the "new" book or just pretend you read it? Rich has the answer. Plus the music of Ephrata, a local band playing the Capitol Hill Block Party on July 24!
Pride weekend is upon us, so we asked Mayor Ed Murray—Seattle's first out, gay mayor—to come in and talk about the way Capitol Hill used to be. Like, in 1984 when Murray moved moved back to Seattle and started renting a room in the gay-friendly-ish neighborhood for a few hundred dollars. Murray talks about what's changed on the hill since then (beyond, obviously, rents) and weighs in on whether the LGBT community really needs a "gay ghetto" anymore. We also talk to Jason Schmidt, author of A List of Things That Didn't Kill Me, a new memoir that's set in 1980s Capitol Hill. His book centers, in part, around his gay father who was then dying of AIDS. Schmidt remembers several-hundred-dollar rents, too, and like Murray tackles the question of whether the neighborhood has changed for the better. Plus the music of Blood Drugs, a heavy/metal band that'll be playing at the Capitol Hill Block Party next month!
This week we talk to Seattle City Council member Mike O'Brien, who paddled out into Puget Sound recently to try to stop a Shell Oil rig from heading off to drill in the Arctic. He was hauled off the water by the US Coast Guard in the process, detained, and charged $250—along with a number of other activists. "Why is the law protecting Shell Oil but not the planet?" O'Brien asks. He says he'll do everything in his power to prevent Shell from returning back to Seattle after the summer Arctic drilling season is over. And Rich Smith is back on the show to talk about a big week in national politics—Hillary Clinton's "populist" speech in NYC, Jeb! Bush's campaign launch in Florida, and Donald Trump's amazing escalator ride into the Republican pack. Plus, the very first recording from a Seattle band called Draemhouse, which was formed out of the recently-broken-up Seattle band Rose Windows.
It's our 10th Anniversary special! Ten episodes of this podcast and we're still not canceled, so it's time to celebrate with University of Washington meteorologist Cliff Mass, who's on the show to argue with The Stranger's Sydney Brownstone over how best to talk about climate change (and whether ocean acidification is a real and present problem). Josh Feit, of PubliCola and Seattle Met Magazine, is also on the show to offer a theory about socialist City Council member Kshama Sawant's defacto support for the home-owning class—and to explain this great album of his, Teenage Machine Age, which was recorded in the 80s and 90s and then recently found in the back of a Stranger desk. We listen to Josh's album, and then we go on a road trip through the brain of Rich Smith, who just drove out to Seattle from Missouri to write about the local literary scene and national politics for the paper. Happy anniversary!
June 5, 2015
This week we talk to Dylan Orr, the man who was just picked to enforce Seattle's trailblazing $15 minimum wage law. He's a trailblazer himself, having served as the first transgender presidential appointee in US history before accepting this new job (in which he'll become the first transgender mayoral appointee to a cabinet-level position in Seattle history). Jen Graves, the Stranger's art critic, is also on the show talking about big staffing changes—and related gender and race concerns—at the University of Washington's art department. Plus, what Jen's looking at lately and the music of the Wimps, a "sweet 'n' sour" punk band from Seattle.
Blabbermouth, Episode 8: A worrisome shooting in Olympia, the young woman who tied herself to a ship, and rhubarb!
This week we hear from Stranger writer Charles Mudede on the shooting of two young, unarmed black men in Olympia and the fallout from the incident (which is still under investigation). We also talk to Chiara D'Angelo, the 20-year-old who tied herself to an Arctic drilling support vessel in Bellingham over Memorial Day weekend. And Stranger food critic Angela Garbes is back to talk about the laws around restaurant surcharges and, in addition, rhubarb!
Released May 29, 2015
Blabbermouth: Our Week-in-Review Podcast Has Feelings About the "Wreck of the Kulluk," Hillary Clinton, and More!
So, the big protests against Shell Oil happened last weekend. They were successful in getting attention around the world, but they didn't cause the global oil company to scrap its Arctic drilling plans and yank its Polar Pioneer drilling rig out of Seattle's port. So what does a company like Shell pay attention to?
We hear from McKenzie Funk, who has been following Shell closely for a long time and wrote "The Wreck of the Kulluk," a gripping New York Times Magazine exploration of what went wrong the last time Shell used Seattle as a homeport for its Arctic drilling pursuits. (Funk also wrote a more recent piece on Shell's visions for our planet's future.)
Ijeoma Oluo is also on the show, and talks about the latest on the Somali remittance crisis (including Mayor Ed Murray's recent conversation about the crisis with John Kerry). And Charles Mudede and Sean Nelson are back to tell us what we should see at SIFF this weekend—and through the rest of the festival. Oh, and Charles also has a heartwarming lesson / film recommendation to share in honor of Memorial Day. Really.
Plus the music of Jenn Ghetto and her project S, which plays at the Sasquatch music festival this weekend!
This Week on the Blabbermouth Podcast: Former Mayor Mike McGinn Criticizes Current Mayor Ed Murray Over Shell Deal
Former Mayor Mike McGinn is back on Blabbermouth this week. McGinn talks about dusting off his kayak in order to join this weekend's Festival of Resistance against the arrival of Shell Oil's Arctic drilling fleet in Seattle. He also tangles with this Danny Westneat column, which questions whether kayak protests will accomplish anything at all, and he criticizes Mayor Ed Murray for not taking a stand against Shell back in November, when—as the mayor told Blabbermouth last week—he first heard the Arctic drilling rigs were headed our way.
"The best way to have stopped Shell would have been sunshine," McGinn says. "If Shell's actions had been known well in advance, in time for the activists to bring the pressure on the port and be heard, this would have been stopped. And it turns out that the port commissioners were keeping it a secret. It turns out Ed Murray was keeping it a secret, too."
Sydney Brownstone is on the show, too, talking about the "two-faced" vote taken by the Port of Seattle's elected commissioners on the Shell issue this week. Ansel Herz ticks through his fact-check of the statements police and the mayor made about May Day last week. And Lindsay Hood talks about escaping New York and landing in Seattle as The Stranger's new music editor.
PLUS the music of Detective Agency, which is playing on Sunday, May 17 at El Corazón.
This Week on the Blabbermouth Podcast: Mayor Ed Murray on May Day, Shell, and His Seattle Times Scolding
Mayor Ed Murray is on Blabbermouth this week! And he has a lot to say about the scolding he got from the Seattle Times editorial board over his stand against Shell's Arctic drilling rigs and the permitting wrench his administration just threw into the plan to host those rigs at Seattle's port. The Mayor doesn't agree with the Times' criticism of his actions, and says the paper's editorial board engaged in some "unconscionable reasoning."
Murray also has a lot to say about May Day, the many styles of protest it drew into the city's streets, his own philosophy of social change, and the unfair criticism he believes the Seattle Police Department has received for its handling of the protests—particularly from Seattle City Council members.
Turning to the particular rage of young white men, which was on display during an evening May Day protest on Capitol Hill, the mayor offers a theory for the starkly different tenor the (largely white and male) May Day evening protest had as compared to the protests earlier in the day, which were led by and focused on communities of color. The mayor also compares some of the Black Bloc protesters to ISIS, which I'm gonna go out on a limb and say will be the most Tweeted snippet of this show.
Sean Nelson and Charles Mudede are also on the podcast, talking about all the Seattle International Film Festival movies they've been screening for our SIFF calendar—and about the way the festival has been changing as Seattle changes. PLUS, the music of Katie Kate the Stranger Genius nominee who's playing May 8 at LoFi with fellow Stranger Genius nominee Erik Blook and Aeon Fux.
Dan Savage is on Blabbermouth this week talking about the tip and how to use it. Kathleen Richards is on, too, talking about risk-shifting in restaurants. And former Seattle mayor Mike McGinn is on as well. He says he can kinda identify with Kshama Sawant these days. She got in trouble this week for not being Seattle nice enough with her council colleagues. "They've never liked Kshama," explains McGinn. (He also has some interesting things to say about who's getting what done on the council, and about Tim Burgess's "patronizing" talk of needing "adults in the room.")
We also hear the former mayor's take on May Day and the line police should draw when responding to protesters. And finally, Sean Nelson, author of a book on Joni Mitchell, explains why she's so important, and why rumors of her being in a coma blew up the internet this week.
Plus! The music of iji, which Emily Nokes calls a "dance-pop project that will keep you in the deepest groove." They're playing on Saturday at the Monkey Pub.
Rent control, anyone? Or how about no housing market at all in Seattle? This week on Blabbermouth, we put former Tenants Union director Jonathan Grant and Smart Growth Seattle's Roger Valdez in a tiny room together and let them try to solve the problem of runaway apartment prices. We also hear from Angela Garbesabout more restaurants that are eliminating tipping. And Sean Nelson and Emily Nokes talk about Montage of Heck and all the feelings and in-theater shouting it's provoking in this city.
Plus! The music of Seattle rock band Posse, who areplaying at the Columbia City Theater tonight at 9 p.m.