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Originally published Sunday, March 2, 2014 at 5:30 AM

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Same City Hall clown car, different driver?

The Wrap by Ron Judd

Seattle Times staff columnist

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Actually he is funny, although in some cases, e.g. Murray's travails this week, our... MORE
When Ron Judd is good, he is very, very good. MORE
mihusky, if Ron is neither funny nor clever, why do you read his column? MORE


Just like everyone else, we tried to give fledgling Seattle Mayor Ed Murray, D-Mike McGinn, plenty of time to get his feet on the ground.

Sadly, it appears that a further step — the posting of directional signs differentiating ground from sky — might have been necessary.

We all own part of that blunder. And we can all see the result. In the span of one week, Murray managed to:

• Complete a stunning, Olympics-slopestyle-worthy frontside, back-flip, 360 fakie inverse reverse twist on a decision to overturn — or was it not to overturn? Re-overturn? Un-overturn? Re-un-overturn? Something like that — disciplinary action involving misbehaving Seattle police officers (pardon that last redundancy.)

• Express heartfelt condolences over the passing of a former city official who was still alive.

As is our custom, we prefer to look at the upside here. We can wallow in the degree to which this executive tomfoolery portends four years of chaos. Or we can celebrate the fact that the city is led by the nation’s first openly daft mayor.

More what’s-on-seconds:

Seriously: How many new mayors does Seattle have to elect before it gets just one who can control the Police Department?

Good News: Mayor Murray’s fresh approach to governance has drawn sponsorship queries from an advertising agency.

Bad News: It represents the guys who make those parade-model Shriners clown cars.

Boom, There it is: Two 13-year-old boys were testing a “new formula” for making model rockets when they caused an explosion that blew the windows out of a North Seattle home. Mission accomplished.

Maxwell Smart, Line One: Rumors continue to swirl that Boeing, formerly of Seattle, is working on a top-secret “black phone” for government agencies that will self-destruct if cracked open. The secret ingredient is said to be a scaled-down version of the self-exploding lithium battery that powers the aft 8-track tape players in the 787 Dreamsmoker.

Olympia, Line Two: Little doubt Boeing brass will slip one to Gov. Jay Inslee to text in their next order for a massive corporate tax break.

Thankful for Small Favors: Mr. Wrap was all prepared to rant about the state Department of Transportation’s tunnel-boring fiasco when word arrived that “non-tunnel” portions of the $3 billion tunnel project are coming along fine.

Um ... Mr. Wrap is no engineer, but feels pretty confident in speculating that those “non-tunnel” portions are probably the portions through which no cars can drive.

This Just In: Seattle Mariners CEO Howard Lincoln reportedly has hired himself to a new lifetime contract, noting that the “non-baseball” portions of his job are going extremely well.

And Finally: A couple local pols, after a hockey-themed visit to Vancouver, B.C., were gushing about an “increased appetite for professional sports in Seattle” after the Seahawks’ Super Bowl victory. Little doubt about that. But the giddyup-NBA/NHL boosters should keep in mind that the success of the football franchise — now worth about six times the $194 million Paul Allen paid for it in 1997 — is Exhibit A for the truism that the pro-sports machine generates more than enough of its own cash to preclude public welfare for facilities.

Ron Judd’s column appears each Sunday. Reach him at or 206-464-8280.

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