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About The daily Astorian. (Astoria, Or.) 1961-current | View Entire Issue (March 24, 2015)
D AILY A STORIAN
Founded in 1873
STEPHEN A. FORRESTER, Editor & Publisher
LAURA SELLERS, Managing Editor
BETTY SMITH, Advertising Manager
CARL EARL, Systems Manager
JOHN D. BRUIJN, Production Manager
DEBRA BLOOM, Business Manager
SAMANTHA MCLAREN, Circulation Manager
Electric rail holds
Traitors to their class
By TIMOTHY EGAN
New York Times News Service
ou probably know from
his weepy reminiscences
that the speaker of the House,
John Boehner, once worked as a
bartender and a janitor, and took
seven years to get out of college.
Maybe you’ve heard that Gov.
Scott Walker of Wisconsin is a
preacher’s son who churned out
burgers and fries at McDonald’s.
And you had to catch that bit
from Sen. Joni Ernst about putting
bread bags over
her shoes while
kind of poor in
carry an extra
f an American rides trains in Europe or Japan, he gains the sen- load of empa-
sation of being an envious visitor from a Third World country. thy through the
success of their
When it comes to rail transport — for passengers or freight — enor- later lives, a
mous gains in capacity, speed and energy savings are achievable in
a few bad breaks, things could have
the U.S. rail network.
gone the other way.
Martha Baskin brought this per- gy exporter that we can easily forget
And there’s the party of tough
spective to our region, writing in the the enormous gains our nation could luck, pal. In the case of the three
Seattle-based news site Crosscut. make from large scale conservation Republican leaders cited above, and
%DVNLQUHSRUWVRQDVLJQL¿FDQWFUHG- measures such as electrifying rail most of those who aspire to be the
GOP presidential nominee next year,
ible proposal to electrify the main lines like Seattle-Chicago.
these Horatio Algerians for the new
northern corridor that runs from
$ WKLUG EHQH¿W IURP HOHFWULI\LQJ Gilded Age are working to keep the
Chicago to Seattle.
the northern corridor would be the downtrodden down. They are traitors
7KHEHQH¿WVRIHOHFWULI\LQJDOLQH momentum effect. Making a success to their class, with all the strutting
such as the Northern Transcontinental on a corridor of this length would moral superiority that comes with
the conversion. Ernst, the lump-of-
Corridor, known more familiarly as breed further success.
coal-hearted new senator from Iowa,
the Empire Builder route are twofold.
Passenger rail in the Seattle- and Walker, who always seems to
It would reduce energy costs and car- Eugene corridor has grown dramat- be promoting something that needs
bon use. Another startling observation ically over the past decade. As the actuarial tables to disguise, at times
that Baskin makes is from an energy 21st century progresses, this corri- sound as if they actively despise the
economist who notes that, “You in- GRU¶V VLJQL¿FDQFH DQG WKH QHHG IRU poor.
Last fall, Walker opposed rais-
crease speed because electric trains carbon reduction will only grow. ing the minimum wage in Wiscon-
have better acceleration and braking Both Oregon and Washington have sin from the poverty-level $7.25
than diesel trains.”
20-year rail transit plans. According an hour. After a group of workers
The Northern Transcontinental to Amtrak: “Oregon’s plans call claimed that the threshold violated
Corridor is a major freight artery. for six round trips between Eugene a state mandate to offer a “living
wage,” his administration slapped
Lately it is prominent for its transit of and Portland. Washington State’s them down. Even though a mini-
oil and coal.
plans call for 13 round trips between mum-wage worker would have to
Baskin quotes a Vashon Island ac- Portland and Seattle, and four round put in 81 hours a week to afford a
tivist named Bill Moyer, who is direc- trips between Seattle and Vancouver, two-bedroom apartment in Wiscon-
sin, Walker’s people saw no need to
tor of The Backbone Campaign. Says British Columbia.”
Moyer, “I can’t imagine that anyone
Washington state legislators are offer them a few pennies more.
Part of it is Walker’s fealty to
would think the highest role (this line) keenly interested in schemes to elec- the restaurant industry. Part of it is
could play is to be a fossil fuel corri- trify the northern corridor. If that his inaccurate belief that raising the
dor to Asia.”
moves forward, our north-south cor- minimum wage kills jobs. And part
of it is nostalgia for the days when he
There is such rejoicing and ridor should follow.
self-congratulation that America is
Read the complete Crosscut article under the Golden Arches. He made
on its way to becoming a net ener- at: http://bit.ly/1C5kOJ1
it. Why can’t they?
“In America, it is one of the few
THE DAILY ASTORIAN • TUESDAY, MARCH 24, 2015
Bold scheme to electrify the
Empire Builder makes sense
places left in the world where it wing at the church picnic if you’re
doesn’t matter what class you were hungry? Of course, she opposed
born into,” Walker said in Iowa in raising Iowa’s minimum wage. And
January. “It doesn’t matter what your she thinks subsidizing health care
for lower-middle-class families is
parents do for a living.”
Except it does. Much of the new a terrible idea. She’s working, with
evidence on the causes of inequality most Republicans in Congress, to
¿QGVWKDWPRYLQJXSIURPRQHFODVV take away health care for millions of
to the other in America has gotten far Americans.
Bartender Boehner was prob-
members of said class, get the right ably a decent dude at happy hour.
tutors that get them into the right But Speaker of the House Boehner
has no tolerance for
schools where they
the kind of folks who
to get the right jobs.
Giving the might have wandered
into his family tavern
They never face the
peril of losing every- people who after losing a job. As
in one state
thing because of, say,
ﬂip burgers people
after another vote to
a large medical bill,
or the dead weight of
and clean raise
wage — red states
a college loan.
As for Walker’s
ﬂoors … a and blue — Boehner
will not allow a sim-
outdated take on wag-
few dimes ple vote on that most
es and prosperity, he
could look to states
more is not basic
to take place in the
that have raised their
He once said
minimum wage and
a handout. House.
he’d commit suicide
are creating jobs at a
rather than vote to
faster pace than those
raise the minimum wage.
holding to the lowest pay.
Meanwhile, Walker’s low-wage
fortress of Wisconsin lags behind HUV FOHDQ ÀRRUV DQG VWRFN JURFHU\
the national average in job creation. shelves a few dimes more an hour
If paying people next to nothing at is not a handout. Offering working
the entry level were such a design for people some help on their insurance
JURZWK HPSOR\HUV ZRXOG EH ÀRFN- premiums does not promote depen-
ing to the Badger State. Even Wal- dence. Nor do those things hurt the
Mart, which built the original busi- economy — just the opposite.
So where is this coming from?
ness model for how to make billions
on the backs of people who need The class traitors guiding the Repub-
state assistance for basic things, will lican Party, and the harsh new feder-
soon be paying its serfs more than al budget unveiled this week, usually
Scott Walker thinks is necessary to promote policies with personal anec-
dotes. Their condescension toward
Ernst loves to talk about growing the poor springs from their own nar-
up in the rosy patina of near-poverty. ratives: They are virtuous because
“My mom made all our clothes,” she they made it, or vice versa. Those
wrote on her campaign website. “We who haven’t made a similar leap
went to church every week, helped are weaklings. It’s a variant of Mitt
our neighbors when they needed it, Romney’s view that 47 percent of
Americans are moochers. Stripped
and they did the same for us.”
See, you deadbeats: Why can’t to its essence, it’s a load of loathing
you just stitch together your own for their former class, delivered on a
clothes and grab an extra chicken plate of platitudes.
Immunizations aren’t Why Jeb Bush could lose
just for children
thing that’s appealing about
cover of the latest Standard,
or, in a different way, Sarah
may actually do its subject
Palin before him — is ex-
f you’re keeping score during political good.
plained by this desire.
the endless 2016 preseason, this
But at the same time,
case of pertussis — better known can help us avoid sickness and death was a pretty good week for Jeb
voters are more responsible
ing for a chance to work
as whooping cough — at Ilwaco for ourselves and those around us.
than polling swings some-
for “45.” But the candidate
Pertussis, tetanus and diphtheria
High School this month is both an ex-
times suggest. They know
First, he watched Scott Walker, himself comes off very fa-
(or enough of them know)
ample of the nationwide controversy are all protected against by the Tdap currently his main competitor for the vorably. More important, he
that in the end they ought
over vaccinations and a reminder that vaccine. All adults should get this Republican front-runner slot, stumble
to support someone who
shot once, followed by the Td vaccine through another not-ready-for-prime-
immunizations aren’t just for kids.
actually has a chance of
to eventually see him — as a
A teacher was diagnosed with the every 10 years to maintain immunity WLPHPRPHQW¿UVWKLULQJDZHOOOLNHG politician who’s much more
being elected president and
LOOQHVVZKLFKLVPRUHFORVHO\LGHQWL¿HG against tetanus and diphtheria.
young consultant named Liz Mair authentically conservative than his cen- effectively governing the country. And
The human papillomavirus (HPV) and then sacking her one day later be- trist image and who has both the record when the tension between “want” and
with children because of the truly grim
“ought” can’t be resolved as neatly as it
and life-threatening ways in which it vaccine is relatively new and protects cause it turned out that she had tweet- and the scars to prove it.
Were I in charge of conservative was by Ronald Reagan in 1980 and the
affects the young. Students who lacked against a sexually transmitted virus ed intemperately about the sacred
outreach for the Bush campaign, I vintage Barack Obama in 2008, the side
a recorded immunization for pertussis that causes cancers in men and wom- state of Iowa.
ZRXOG EH EODVWHPDLOLQJ WKH SUR¿OH WR of “ought” almost always wins.
had to stay home. They either had to en later in life. It is recommended for
Second, he survived Andrew Fergu- doubtful right-wing activists, with “Jeb:
That’s why there hasn’t been a real
WDNHD¿YHGD\FRXUVHRIDQWLELRWLFVDQG women up to age 26, men up to 21, son.
He’s on Your Side” in the subject line no-hope nominee in either party since
Ferguson is a brilliant essayist and (or “Jeb: The Anti-Romney”).
George McGovern in 1972. That’s why
then get a doctor’s letter reporting that and men ages 22 to 26 who are im-
But I wouldn’t fool myself with the Mitt Romney, unloved and unwanted,
they were symptom free, or else stay muno-compromised or who have sex reporter for the Weekly Standard, and
away from school for 21 days after their with men. This is a measure that can lately he has been an angel of death notion that Jeb’s biggest problem in the was still the Republican pick in 2012.
for Republican presidential hopefuls. primary season is his policy positions. And that’s why if Jeb could just run
last potential exposure. That’s a lot of avoid unimaginable tolls of suffer- During the last presidential preseason, His stances on immigration and Com- against, say, Carson, Huckabee and
class time to miss, and yet a small price ing in later life, while protecting our KHSUR¿OHG+DOH\%DUERXURI0LVVLVVLS- mon Core will hurt him with conserva- Cruz, it wouldn’t matter that voters
to pay to make sure whooping cough loved ones from the same fate.
pi and Mitch Daniels of
tives, and his record in don’t want to be represented by another
Florida will help him, scion of the Bush dynasty. In the end,
Other shots we should all be certain Indiana, and both gov-
didn’t gain a foothold in the area.
but his biggest prob- they wouldn’t really have a choice.
There is much public discussion we’ve had include those for menin-
But right now, in Walker and Mar-
Barbour let slip what
lem right now is iden-
about the social obligation to immunize JRFRFFDOGLVHDVHIRU¿UVW\HDUFROOHJH
sounded like praise
WL¿FDWLRQQRWLGHRORJ\ co Rubio, Bush faces two opponents
and protect one another against infec- students living in residence halls, along for the civil rights-era
There just aren’t that whose backgrounds and identities —
tious diseases, versus individual choices with those for hepatitis B, hepatitis A, White Citizens’ Coun- responsible
many Republican vot- the working-class slayer of unions, the
ers who want to vote self-made immigrant’s son — match
to decline vaccinations for ourselves chickenpox (varicella), and measles, cil in his native Yazoo than polling
for a dynastic heir in the way Republican voters want to
and our children. For some, shots rep- mumps, and rubella, according to the City; Daniels told Fer-
guson that the country
2016, and it isn’t clear think about their party in a way that
resent an unacceptable personal risk in federal Centers for Disease Control.
needed a “truce” on
yet if they’ll decide a silver-spoon politician, whatever
Adults of all ages can help our- social issues. Not coin- sometimes
return for a vague public good. Much
that they ought to vote his record, never will. And notwith-
resistance to vaccinations is, however, selves and society at large by making cidentally, neither man
for Bush in spite of standing Walker’s recent stumbles,
EDVHG RQ VFLHQWL¿FDOO\ GLVFUHGLWHG QR- sure we get shots for pneumonia, in- ended up even mount-
neither he nor Rubio obviously fails
ing a presidential bid.
Voting for pres- the “ought” test, since it’s possible to
tions about side effects that don’t exist. ÀXHQ]DDQGVKLQJOHV
,QD)HUJXVRQSUR¿OHRI7HG ident is a political act, but it’s also a imagine either man doing better than
Immunizations are, in fact, one of the
In busy lives, immunizations are the
included a devastating section in relational one. As the presidency in- Bush against Hillary Clinton in a gen-
great lifesavers of the modern world kinds of things that slip off the to-do lists
which the journalist, trapped in cars creasingly dominates our politics, peo- eral election.
and something we owe each other.
of people who are otherwise smart and and green rooms with his subject, re- ple want a nominee who will somehow
That doesn’t mean either can over-
Beyond this thoroughly well-aired responsible. But now that pharmacies, alizes that Cruz only speaks in stump personally represent all the virtues that come Jeb’s institutional advantages.
matter, the Ilwaco case points out a health fairs, public health departments speeches, and won’t . stop . giving . they associate with their country, their %XWKHQHHGVWKHPWRÀRXQGHUDELWDQG
somewhat separate situation — the and other venues all commonly offer them. Then, just last month, Ferguson political coalition and their world view. to look unready; failing that, he needs to
need for adults to remain conscious appointment-free shots that are often decided that three 2016 hopefuls didn’t They want an archetype, an inspiration, ¿QGDZD\WRVKRZWKHPXS
Because otherwise, Rubio or Walk-
HYHQ GHVHUYH IXOO SUR¿OHV DQG ¿OOHWHG D ¿JXUH ZKR FDQ VRPHKRZ SHUVRQLI\
of our own vaccinations. This is es- completely covered by private and pub- the ambitions of Chris Christie, Rand liberalism, or conservatism, or America er might start to convince Republican
pecially true for young adults. But at lic insurance, it’s easier to get it over Paul and Mike Huckabee in a single itself.
voters that this time, how they want to
each stage of life there are shots that with. Let’s do, for everyone’s sake.
Among Republican voters, every- vote is also how they should.
Ilwaco whooping cough makes
case for adult protection
By ROSS DOUTHAT
New York Times News Service