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May 24th, 2006 WW Editorial Staff | Winners & Losers
 

Read this before the tsunami hits!

     
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WINNERS

Looks like Blazers owner Paul Allen can stop panhandling outside City Hall. Local multimillionaire Mark Wattles, founder of Hollywood Video, told The Oregonian last week that he will bid on the troubled basketball team as well as the Rose Garden arena as soon as the Seattle multibillionaire decides to sell.

Former state Rep. Kelley Wirth (D-Corvallis), who was caught with meth in her car after a rival for the affections of a Statehouse janitor paramour tried to run her over, actually got some good news last week. Wirth is still serving probation for her meth conviction, but Oregon's ethics commission dismissed charges against her for quadrupling the pay of a legislative aide—who also happened to be her mom.

Dumpers of toxic waste got all giddy when the feds approved a new dump along the Willamette River for contaminated sediment from the Port of Portland's Superfund site. Enviros fear a flood or earthquake might re-release poisonous materials into the water.

LOSERS

Driving while black appears to still be a crime in Portland. New traffic-stop data show police pull over black drivers twice as often as whites. The data also showed that searches of black drivers' cars were less likely to yield drugs or other contraband.

Watch out for God's wrath if you're planning a trip to the coast this summer. Religious broadcaster Pat Robertson warns, "if I heard the Lord right about 2006," a tsunami is headed our way. But before you reserve space on the ark, know that Robertson's previous apocalyptic forecasts have all washed out.

Oregon's 8,000 National Guardsmen must be wondering what happened to "one weekend a month, two weeks a year." Between the 950 soldiers dispatched to Afghanistan on Monday and the untold hundreds heading to patrol the U.S.-Mexico border, the state's weekend warriors will be spread pretty thin for a lot longer than a weekend when the tsunami hits.

 
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