Friday, June 30, 2006

What even happened to protecting communities?


In the last few weeks the Protect Communities Coalition has evolved into the No on 933 campaign, which was bound to happen, but I wish it didn't have to when it comes to their message. It seems like the No on 933 folks are taking too close of a look at the old messages from the Take Another Look Oregon folks, the No on Measure 37 campaign.

Measure 37 was the ballot initiative on which Washington's I-933 is based.

The problem with No on 37's campaign was that its argument was not taking into consideration the voter's best self interest. By boiling down their stand to "It is complex, it will cost too much money," and putting that up against the oppositions "It is fair," they were bound to lose. Sure, it will cost the government money, but they essentially let Yes on 37 make the case that is was money owed to land owners anyway. And, they let the Yes campaign portray voters as the main beneficiaries of the initiative.

In Washington, though, we seemed to be taking another tack, shooting straight for the "this initiative will screw your neighborhood, your community, so far up... well, you won't know what to do. And, they're giving money away to developers."

But, now with the new No on campaign up and running, they seem to be going back to the old no on Measure 37 message:
Cost taxpayers hundreds of millions of dollars
Create a “pay or waive” system that makes local communities decide whether to waive laws for special interests or force taxpayers to pay them to follow the rules
Cause loopholes for special interests that lead to irresponsible development and more traffic congestion
The above image, which is being used as a blog button, is even worse. It makes no mention of protecting neighborhoods or communities.

The deeper you go into the No on 933 website, the more they mention the Protection angle, but they need to move it front and center.

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