Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Dave On A Rope

I thought I would share this picture of one of my four sons. We only get one shot at life and it ought to hold some fun and excitement.

You have to make it happen. Experiences are rarely handed to you...unless you have rich parents. Dave did not have that kind of riches. But he did have good people around him. Dreams, a work ethic, and determination are picked up along the way.

Dave is a Eagle Scout, spent two years on an LDS mission to Argentina, earned an MBA, and is a married father of five.

I really like watching my grown kids. You don't have to do anything. They move on their own!

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Althea Lute (1951-2011)

The last time I talked with Althea she was yelling at me.

It wasn't me, it was something happening that wasn't right. That was her way, sometimes. She had an immense amount of life's wisdom. She was a passionate person who loved her family and was so loyal to her friends. I think sometimes "conservatives" and Republican leaders (certainly) don't have the loyalty that is so evident in union leaders. When there is trouble...a friend has your back. Althea always had my back. She is a person I loved, respected, and will miss.
On the surface I am sure we were an unlikely pair. But, every so often there is a mutual respect that comes together. I will be speaking about her on Saturday night at the Coalition of Black Trade Unionists. Her picture will sit on my desk.

Mrs. Althea (Jones) Lute was born February 5, 1951, in Seattle, Washington to the union of Josh and Josephine (Robinson) Jones. Althea was preceded in death by her parents and oldest sister Hattie Mae. She accepted Christ as a child and was christened at the Good Shepherd Lutheran Church.
Althea attended Garfield High School; and enjoyed playing basketball and baseball. She married and had three children. In 1972 she began working the night shift at University of Washington while attending school during the day. She obtained her diploma at Seattle Central Community College, and continued her education and later earned an AA degree. While working at the UW, Althea quickly became a shop steward for Local 1488 of the Washington Federation of State Employees/AFSCME Council 28, AFL-CIO; later becoming president; After years as a Local 1488 activist, vice president and president Althea won election as WFSE/AFSCME's statewide vice president in 1992. She was the first African-American elected to hold that post. Always involved in numerous job actions and rallies, Althea managed to meet and marry John Lute, the love of her life, and to this union came one child.
Althea was later employed at Harborview Medical Center as a patient registration representative. She stepped down from this position to take a position as an organizer with WFSE/AFSCME. She eventually became organizing director and then legislative and political action field coordinator.
In 2006 Althea retired from the union and at that time she stated: "I never say Goodbye, I just say see you later."

Althea was a member of Ebenezer AME Zion Church, she grew to love the word of God. Throughout her life she displayed empathy and compassion towards children
by reaching out to help them. Althea professed faith and hope in Christ and during her final days she expressed a desire to go home to be with the Lord "where the street of the city is pure gold, as transparent glass." She departed this life, June 22, 2011, surrounded by her devoted husband and loving
family at Swedish Medical Center.

Althea leaves to treasure her memory her loving and devoted husband, John David Lute, children; Michelle Antoinette, San Diego, CA, Willie Franklin, Jr., Seattle, WA, Nathan Andre, Tukwila, and Laura Joshett, Auburn, WA, Julian David, George Lee, Jr., Israel, Francis Xavier; Seven grandchildren; Christiana Marquedda, Christopher Jr. Layonna Neiyeera, Santino Vohari, Jeremiah David Andre, LaClyra Antoinette, Kingg LaRae; and one great grand daughter; Aliciana
Marie. Four sisters: Brenda Ann, Gloria Jean, Esther Mae and Pamila Lee, all of Seattle, WA, and a host of nieces, nephews, cousins and God children.

Friday, July 15, 2011

Stuck In Colder Weather

My backyard fundraiser in July 2010. The temperature was around 92 degrees. To my right are Dino Rossi and Rob McKenna. I thought I would document a nice July day in WA for us all to remember.

One thing I did not mention at the time was the near death experience that day. I was driving the jeep across our pasture which was being used as a parking lot for the backyard picnic. The pasture is bisected by a hot wire fence with pasture grass growing up underneath it. To get the property ready for the event I had a guy weed eating under the fence line but he ran out of time and only got about 10 feet to the right of the gate in the middle. I was driving a band member up to the party and having a great time rolling over the pasture grass as only a jeep can do. Accustomed to the grass along the fence line as defining actually WHERE the fence was...I didn't see the fence and thought I was headed for the open gate. Let me fetch a picture of what happened! (picture to come)

Bonney Lake Watershed Tour
Saturday, July 9th, I attended a tour of Bonney Lake's watershed. Dan Roach also attended. Four of my grand kids came along to learn with us. We were welcomed by so many locals who opened their property for us to learn about the habitat recovery efforts.
8 Mile Hike
I have been getting ready for a long hike so Sunday I walked from the farm to Enumclaw. There was a one mile hill involved and went a little over 8 miles. It was a beautiful day for a hike. ( I think it was the only day this month thus far.)

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Cortney Jean Roach 7-12-11 8lbs 2 oz

Cortney is held by big sister Hannah
Cortney looks like her dad to me! We are a very blessed family. Hannah will be two next week and is being kicked out of the nest. When asked to get a pamper for the baby she runs both going and returning. Cortney sleeps. Lindsay, Samantha, Davis, and Hannah have a new little sister. Jim and I welcomed #14 and will see her when blessed at church in just a few weeks. Can't wait!

Monday, July 11, 2011

Roach Leads The Way On Newspaper Advertising

The committee on Senate policy is meeting soon to determine if my using newspaper advertising will continue to be allowed. Rep. Chris Hurst liked what I was doing so much that he followed suit.

Most legislators currently use their communication budgets on newsletters that are sent only to registered voters (good voters at that). My choice was to use newspapers and reach everyone, even non voters. Here is how the press reported it.

Politicians turning to newspaper ads
ALTERNATIVE: Newspaper ads better inform district during time of budget cuts; limitations pose problems


Last updated: July 11th, 2011 03:12 AM (PDT)

Two state lawmakers have found a novel way to spend the public money they receive for keeping their constituents up to date: Advertisements in local newspapers.

The cheaper alternative to mailing newsletters to voters is likely to catch on in a time of budget cuts, predicts Democratic Rep. Chris Hurst. He followed a fellow 31st District lawmaker, Republican Sen. Pam Roach, in buying ad space instead of postage.

It’s something city governments and school districts already do, said Hurst, of Enumclaw.

“We’re trying to communicate with people in as cost-effective a way as possible,” he said. “There are a whole ton of members that are considering it.”

Roach, of Auburn, published at least six ads in the first six months of this year using a communications budget of a little more than $8,000, which she said wouldn’t have covered even a single newsletter mailing.

But there are limits that may make it hard for others to follow.

Lawmakers who follow the advice of House or Senate administration will find the House restricts where the newspaper ads can circulate. In the Senate, a committee of leaders is considering what should be allowed.

The Facilities and Operations Committee could call for ads to be reviewed by Senate administration and published only in papers that stick to a single Senate district. That’s what the House does, which prevents the ads from appearing in larger papers such as The News Tribune.

“You’re supposed to be directing your expenditures at your constituents,” said Sen. Karen Fraser, the Thurston County Democrat who chairs the committee.

“It’s frankly to keep the peace,” House counsel Tim Sekerak explained. “If one member starts mailing partisan material into someone else’s district, we’re going to have a little border war break out.”

An exception is made if House members in the neighboring district give permission, Sekerak said.

Roach’s ads ran in three Sound Publishing weekly papers that are distributed free to homes: The Bonney Lake & Sumner Courier-Herald, the Enumclaw Courier-Herald and the Auburn Reporter.

The reach of the Auburn paper crosses political boundaries, including parts of as many as four legislative districts. Roach said that should be allowed, just as lawmakers are allowed to create radio and online news releases that can reach anyone.

“Get over it. We communicate freely and openly with every other medium. Every one of them bleed into different districts,” Roach said.

Hurst so far has run two ads in two papers: The Bonney Lake & Sumner Courier-Herald and the Enumclaw Courier-Herald.

Lawmakers are talking to the people back home in new and less expensive ways, such as inviting voters to dial in to telephone conferences.

It’s partly due to budget cuts. The 98 House members get an average of less than $20,000 for their official publications this term, less than half as much as in the 2007 term.

The Senate suspended publication spending last year before restoring more than one-third of the original $24,000 that each of its 49 members was to receive for the year. The Senate’s operations committee has yet to decide how much to spend this year.

A Visit With Mitt Romney

Romney In Washington State
This evening I attended a fundraiser for Mitt Romney in Medina. Some of the biggest Republican donors in WA politics were in attendance. In the last quarter Romney brought in more funds than all his opponents combined! And, yes, Obama will raise one billion dollars.

Romney is the only viable business person in the race having spent 25 years running Bain Consulting.

He gave a speech that covered the economy and foreign relations. I asked him about Cyber defense.

In my conversation with Mitt it told him I would be attending the FOX News Iowa debate and straw poll. I asked if he would be participating in that and he said he would. Then added: "Be sure to cheer when I say something smart." I thought that was insight into his personality. He would rather be viewed as smart than be viewed as someone who just wanted to be saying the right things.

I was on the Romney Steering Committee in '08 and will support him again.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Cyber Attack On Richland National Laboratory

Son, Captain John Roach, will be leaving Germany and his next station is Fort Meade, MD. Ft. Meade is the center of Cyber Command. Cyber War is the next and greatest threat to our security. You are noticing reports like the following almost weekly.

Posted today
Seatttle Times, AP reports:

The Pacific Northwest National Laboratory at Richland is restoring its computer system this week after a cyberattack.

Spokesman Gregg Koller says when officials became aware of the sophisticated attack Friday they shut down most computer services for employees, such as email and access to the Internet.

KONA reports computer experts have been analyzing the attack and installing a security patch.

The national lab conducts scientific research, including nuclear science related to the Hanford nuclear reservation.


Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Casey Anthony Grows Up...Or...Headline News Reduced to Soapbox Central

I really don't know anyone who can believe the verdict in the case against Casey Anthony. Anthony's case will go down with OJ's in the textbooks.

What would the results be if the national media spent that much time on how the government can lie in the court rooms about grandparents and then steal babies from entire biological families!? In WA State it happens all the time only on the word and lies from CPS workers.

In any event...Jose Biaz and eight others of the defense team will go down in history and have all the royalties book sales can produce and the speaking circuit will bear.

Casey will put her black hair back down on her shoulders and go back to whatever she was doing. Except now she can do all that with her pockets lined with the money that will come her way.

Hey, I wonder if OJ's friends have run out of money and patience. Maybe OJ, also in Florida, would like to date Casey? That would be justice!

I would think Casey would have this all forgotten in about three weeks...but the book deals and few selected media print articles...will keep the incidents in her mind for a while.

Mr. and Mrs Anthony will soon divorce. There is no way out of that.

What I liked about the case was that there was a clear opportunity to have your day in court and with representation. That doesn't happen in legislative bodies. You never meet your accusers or have a chance at going before impartial people or anyone for that matter. They call that a Star Chamber and it is used to publicly and politically skewer someone with the aim of taking them out of office. Rather ironic that individuals charged with securing our rights should deny such rights to their members.

The national news media had plenty of stuff more worthy to broadcast than the Anthony trial. It was all about selling ad time and making a good time for themselves. And, oh yes...they did enjoy the excitement of the coverage. CNN and FOX and particularly Nancy Grace reduced Headline News to Soapbox Central, or, Comedy Central as prison inmates are laughing right now.

Can you believe how the media, almost 100%, miscalculated the whole thing? For them it is a fitting end. Maybe they are the ones who got justice. They worked the American public up into a frenzy and then crashed. This was the penalty for wasting this much time on this story.

Excuse me...I gotta go mow the lawn with 10 million other people.

Fantastic Fourth...One to Remember

Jim and I had to agree that we had one of our most enjoyable Independence Days ever. The culmination was attending a military families day at Joint Base Lewis-McChord.

My most unusual Independence Day was in Deli, East Timor at the U. S. Embassy. But the most patriotic was at JBLM.

Jim Delivers Keynote
We started the day with Jim delivering the keynote address at the Enumclaw LDS church celebration. He did a great job bringing the occasion to all age groups in the crowd. I skipped the homemade cinnamon rolls. Jim ate mine and several others.

Red Jeep My Ride In Parade
We dashed home, washed and waxed the red jeep, and drove back to Enumclaw for the most well attended parade there ever. The perfect weather had the whole town outside! Driver Jim's green John Deere hat was part of Americana in our small town. I was very warmly received and I loved waving directly to the little children on the route.

Military Hosts 4th of July Celebration
There is something about life on base and the military in general that makes a base celebration really close to the heart. There are kids and lots of people like any other gathering on the 4th. But these kids and families have been doing the sacrificing.

Jim and I stayed 6 hours. A band played behind Cowan Field, carnival rides were high above the crowd and a vast number of booths and food carts lined the walkway. There were three kids to every two adults...the average age was eleven!

On CNN this day there was coverage of Lieutenant Dan's Band. CSI New York's Gary Siniese has a band which he put together to tour for the troops. (Siniese played Lt. Dan in Forest Gump .) The band has been all over the world and the states. I had noticed on the invitation that Lt. Dan's Band would be playing and had no idea what that was. Imagine the coincidence when we figured it out!

How close did I get to Siniese? Well, I lent my "Rascal Flats" hat to his daughter to help keep the setting sun from her eyes. And, I chatted with his wife who assured me there actually are conservatives in Hollywood.

Our group included only Lt. Gov Brad Owen and his wife. As invited "VIPs" we sat center front for the presentation of each state flag and the 1st Corps Band concert. Wow! All patriotic music, grand and loud... perfect weather... thousands of America's service families from around the country...followed by the most fantastic fireworks display accompanied by Tchaikovsky's 1812 Overture "with cannon"....

I thought several times of Captain John. I know he and his family enjoyed their 4th on at USAB Spangdalhum, Germany. Around the world, our military celebrated the 4th of July, even in Iraq and Afghanistan. When the blasts were the loudest I heard a troop behind me, "Yeah, tell em who we are!!!"

It was a get day.

DSHS Employee Admits To Voyeurism

It takes one to know one, as the old saying points out. So you gota appreciate the KING 5 headline:
DSHS youth sex offender counselor arrested for voyeurism.

Drew Mikkelsen, KING 5
TUMWATER, Wash. -- An Olympia man who works with juvenile sex offenders faces a sex-related criminal charge.

Tumwater police said Joshua Allen Black, 32, admitted he took pictures up a woman's skirt in a grocery store parking lot Thursday night. He did not know the woman.

Black is in the Thurston County Jail on one charge of voyeurism.

He has worked for the Department of Social and Human Services since 2002 working as a youth counselor. Some of his clients are serving time for sex offenses.

Investigators say he told them, "Okay, I did it."

The accuser, who did not want her name published, said she was surprised someone would take her picture like that but said it was more surprising to learn what the man did for a living.

“It’s a shame someone people look up to actually went and did what he advises people against,” said the 21-year-old accuser. (edited for space. PR)