Last week, WW ran a profile of Seth Woolley, the good-government advocate who has been filing complaints against local and state officials for alleged elections law violations. Recently, he's been critical of Multnomah County Commissioner Loretta Smith's campaign fundraising practices. Here's what readers thought about Woolley's watchdogging.
Tangerine Bolen, via Facebook: "Three cheers to gadflies who swarm campaign finance reform! Serious public service there."
Joseph Brown-Womack, via Facebook: "Hey, Seth, Portland doesn't need any more white male cops. Thanks for your application, we'll keep it on record."
Jesse Liberty, via Facebook: "If [Smith] is violating the campaign rules, then the rules need enforced. This guy is a hero."
Thedeadtext, via wweek.com: "He is an opportunist, not a traffic cop."
Econline, via wweek.com: "When Smith says that what she is doing is fine because someone else did it in the past, even though it is illegal, it strikes me that she is admitting that Woolley is correct."
Chedward, via wweek.com: "I don't buy [Smith's] 'someone else did it so why can't I?' defense. Do what's right by the letter of the law and there is no problem."
SocraticMeathead, via wweek.com: "This really exemplifies the petty corruption Oregon Democrats engage in."
Bridger, via wweek.com: "I think [Smith] violated the letter while adhering to the spirit of the law. The spirit being: Politicians do what we want."
Portland's Changing Skyline
Enjoyed your article while thinking the headline presented a false choice.
• The crisis is affordability, and the root cause is income disparity and low wages. Portland's rental vacancy rate actually has been rising. Without huge subsidies, it is impossible to build housing that is affordable for lower-income levels.
• We'll only catch up with housing demand when population growth abates—another root cause no one wants to talk about. City dwellers still have huge impacts on the planet through their footprint—especially if they fly a lot or are major consumers. For every mouth to feed, whether in a city or a suburb, another little piece of a rainforest will be lost to farms. Stop touting urban growth as a cure-all.
• What about Gateway? Served by three transit lines, two freeways, and only 5 miles from the city center, and even a nice swath of parkland. Long penciled in as a regional center, the city has given up on it because developers want the quick profits downtown. Yet a Gateway midrise can have stunning mountain views. Gateway is the great opportunity to build a truly mixed-income, midrise village here. There isn't the will.
In short, Portland's myopic view is, most growth needs to occur within a 3-mile radius of downtown, but that wasn't so much the vision 20 years ago.