Category: Seattle


WASL Has Some Real Impact

Thanks to the WASL the Seattle School District is doing part of what it should have always been doing: One in four sophomores in Seattle Public Schools has failed so many classes that the district has “reclassified” them as freshmen. Nearly half the sophomores at Rainier Beach High School and about one-third of the 10th-graders at Cleveland, Chief Sealth and Franklin are now considered freshmen. The 827 students districtwide can remain with their peers in classes, sports and other activities but must make up the credits in night or summer school in order to graduate on time. The hold backs,...


Southwest May Move Headquarters

Southwest Airlines may move its headquarters from Dallas: Southwest has hinted that Dallas is a less-than-ideal city for its administrative offices because it’s inconvenient to move its people there for meetings. Southwest chief executive Gary Kelly has previously said that if the carrier were picking a new headquarters from scratch, Dallas wouldn’t make the first cut because of the Wright restrictions. Southwest is Dallas’ fifth-largest taxpayer, contributing $15 million last year. It provides 5,000 jobs and its activities at Love Field create $2 billion to $3 billion in economic activity, said Ron Ricks, the carrier’s top lobbyist. If they do...


Urban Transportation Projects as Market Failures

The Seattle Times today presented one of the best arguments I have seen for terminating the Monorail Project: • Operations would almost certainly have to be subsidized somehow, as no public-finance expert interviewed by The Times believes the monorail’s claims that it can support itself from fares, ads and self-generated revenue. “Typically, urban transportation projects in the United States are not self-supporting,” said Scott Trommer, senior director at Fitch Ratings, one of the nation’s three bond-rating agencies. “They require subsidy support, from some kind of dedicated tax or government grants.” And, terminate all the other analogous projects. Well, at least,...

Who Is the Seattle City Council Protecting?

The Binary Circumstance suggests that there may be more than “protecting the community” to Seattle’s strip club moratorium: Locally it has been suggested that the real purpose of the moratorium has been to insure that existing strip clubs don’t lose their monopoly on the market Well, sure, monopolies are the natural result of any government imposed restriction on entry whether it is stip clubs, hospitals, lawyers, pharaceuticals, or….well, the list is near endless.


No Seattle School Closures

For now: Seattle Public Schools Superintendent Raj Manhas apparently has changed his mind about closing 10 schools under a school-restructuring plan to save money. Sure there was a lot of backlash against his proposals. However, given shifts in demographics and a clear need to move beyond the long failed factory school system it is hard to visualize a scenario that does not include the closures that are becoming increasingly common across the US: The number of California public schools closing more than quadrupled in 2003 from the prior year, with most in Los Angeles and the San Francisco Bay Area,...