Slog PM: A Book Burning, A Gas Fire, and A Big Ass Avocado squib

by Rich Smith
Avocados are used as currency in some areas of Brooklyn AMIRIGHT FOLKS?? Justin Sullivan / GETTY

Trump turned the U.S. Department of State into a swamp: This according to testimony from Marie L. Yovanovitch, the former U.S. ambassador to Ukraine. At the risk of losing her current job with the department, the veteran foreign services employee said the President personally recalled her after some flunkies spread lies about her disloyalty. She said she did not take kindly to Rudy Giuliani going around her back in an apparent attempt to enrich himself, and she also mourned the damage Trump has done to the state department in general.

Airstrikes on Kurdish-held territories continue: Since Trump withdrew troops from Northern Syria earlier this week, the chaos of a Turkish invasion gave five ISIS militants an opportunity to break out of jail and bomb a Turkish city, according to the New York Times.

And here I thought conservative students were too afraid to speak up at college: After Latina novelist Jennine Capó Crucet spoke about white privilege during a recent reading at Georgia Southern University, a group of offended students burned her book, which was required reading in some first-year classes, and posted video on social media, according to The George-Anne, the school's student newspaper.

Though the First Amendment rightfully protects the act of burning books: Historians associate the practice with Nazi students throwing big old book bonfires in an attempt to intimidate Jews and destroy all "un-German" work.

Now, I know what you free thinkers are thinkin': Is burning a few copies of a book by a latina author in the era of Trump really, truly—when you really do some freethinkin' on it—any different than private bookstore owners removing from their own shelves books written by living authors who have been credibly accused of sexual harassing people so as not to financially support authors whose behavior they find repugnant? Yes, those two actions are different, and that difference is important. The bookstore owner taking the bad man's book off the shelf is participating in a principled act of protest at some risk to their own bottom line, whereas the group of college students burning an anti-racist collection of essays is carrying out a hateful and intimidating act in response to an idea that challenged their worldview.

Speaking of snowflakes: New York Times columnist and climate change skeptic Bret Stephens pulled out of a scheduled debate at George Washington University with the guy who compared him to a bedbug, reports Slate. Stephens backed out after his opponent insisted the debate be open to the public.

Look at this big avocado: Could you imagine? If I bought this avocado, I wouldn't have to go avocado shopping for a week!

Me when I see this giant avocado:

Chase is on vacation, but the WeWork beat never goes on vacation: The desk-share company might go broke as early as next month, and Bloomberg cites two sources saying it's going to take $5 billion from JPMorgan Chase to dig the company out of the very deep and very dumb hole they've dug for themselves.

Natural gas fire in North Seattle injures three workers, according to the Seattle Times. An excavator dug up and pierced the gas line, but the Seattle Fire Department doesn't yet know why it caught on fire.

Stay outta Green Lake: Seattle Parks and Recreation closed the lake due to unsafe levels of cyanobacteria, reports the Times. Next week the agency will check to see if the bad bacteria levels have dropped. Until then, keep your dogs and your kids and your cats and yourself out of that thing.

The Chamber of Commerce's PAC is paying for canvassers: You might soon see paid surrogates at your doors shilling for Egan Orion, Heidi Wills, and Jim Pugel. If your canvaser isn't the candidate, ask that person how they know the candidate! It's a fun game.

Tis the season for disinformation campaigns.
Tis the season for disinformation campaigns with bizarrely specific claims.

Speaking of fake bullshit: Someone has been taping up deceptive campaign posters around Columbia City and Capitol Hill. The posters appear to rip off the design from a Facebook event page that promoted a forum with three Seattle City Council candidates way back when Tammy Morales was flirting with the idea of running as a socialist. As it turns out, none of the candidates are running to add 40 more encampments. If you see one of these signs, go ahead and recycle it.

Surprise! The Seattle Times endorses Egan Orion: Hah, what's next? The Seattle Times Editorial Board throwing its weight behind a Republican Congressional candidate while Trump's the president? Ha ha ha. That'll be the day. All non-joking aside, this endorsement reads like all Orion endorsements read: way more anti-Sawant than pro-Orion. Though I guess it is kinda hard to make a strong positive case for a guy who just says whatever the Chamber tells him to say. He's "evolved" on so many issues—accepting an endorsement from CASE, safe injection sites, rent control—that I'm starting to lose count. If you want to read some endorsements, read the only ones that matter.

Phil Tavel has $1,000 in unpaid traffic tickets, according to the Seattle Times. Surely some philanthropist or small business will help him pay the tab.

LIGHT RAIL SERVICE INTERRUPTION REMINDER: Starting Friday night at 11 p.m, light rail will be closed between Capitol Hill Station and SODO Station. The closure will last through the weekend, with buses ferrying passengers between those two destinations. WHY? Because they have to build the light rail to Bellevue. That's why.

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