Our "liberal media" here in Seattle is something else -- particularly the Republican-owned Seattle Times, which is astute enough to include a few liberal voices on its editorial page and among its columnists. Our TV stations are pure mush. And don't get me started on the subject of local talk radio.
The worst, though, has to be the Times. Because, those handful of liberals notwithstanding, its editorial content (especially its editorials) is relentlessly right-wing. This was embodied in their endorsement yesterday of Republican John Koster in Washington's new 1st Congressional District.
Indeed, their rationale was enough to make you laugh out loud:
We disagree with Koster on social issues, but in Congress right now, his fiscal viewpoint and elected experience are what’s needed.
Koster’s reputation and performance as the practical conservative who can articulate and act on those views and find common ground is needed and welcome.
Actually, Koster's "reputation and performance" make irrevocably clear that he is a Tea Party fanatic, a fiscal extremist who, in his six years in the state's Legislature, voted against five of six budgets. It's entirely predictable what he'll do if elected to the House: Sign up with the Tea Party caucus and immediately link arms with the bloc that has refused to pass any kind of jobs bill or face up to the problem of unemployment, simply because doing so would ensure a difficult re-election for President Obama, and who already tried to drive the American economy over the cliff with their brinkmanship on the debt ceiling.
And that's just on the fiscal side of things. Koster is so extreme on so many other issues -- particularly on abortion and education -- that the notion of him "finding common ground" with Democrats on anything is endlessly risible.
What the Times didn't tell its readers, though, is that Koster has a long history of far-right extremism -- not merely with the Tea Party, but back in the 1990s, with the far-right Patriot/militia movement.
The Times' softball profile of Koster made an oblique mention of this fact -- so we know that they have to be perfectly aware of all this:
His record also shows a steady streak of conservatism: He voted against five of six budgets and introduced legislation to allow a group of people in northern Snohomish County to secede and form a new county, "Freedom County."
Actually, it runs much, much deeper than that.
John Koster played a significant role in helping promote far-right "Patriot" movement property-rights organizing in the Puget Sound region in the 1990s – organizing that in many cases involved recruiting militias, extremist "sovereign citizen" schemes, and efforts at secession. Koster's role was important: As a state legislator, he introduced bills that promoted and legitimized the far-right agenda of these groups, particularly their efforts at forming new counties, carved out by "secession" from larger urban counties in western Washington.