Citizen Editorial: Is Couture the cure? I doubt it.

I really enjoyed Ms. Peet’s editorial in which she supports candidate Travis Couture for State Senator representing the 35th Legislative District. That’s not to say I agree with her, I don’t, but she makes a couple of good points:

Ms. Peet notes that Tim Sheldon has represented the 35th Dist. for well over two decades, and then asks the question, “Are we better off?” Well, Mason County makes up the majority of the 35th and we’re an impoverished community with high unemployment, high crime, few economic opportunities and a dismal public health ranking. So, no; I’d say we’re not better off.

I would add that, in addition to representing the 35th Dist. Mr. Sheldon has, for the past ten years, also served as a Mason County Commissioner. So now I’m the one asking, are we better off?

Let’s see. We’re millions of dollars in debt, we lost the fairgrounds, expenditures exceed revenues by $3M, and the $47M Belfair sewer treatment plant threatens to displace residents and bankrupt the county. So, no; I’d say we’re not better off there, either.

But here’s where Ms. Peet and I part company: Is candidate Couture the cure for what ails us? I doubt it. First of all, he’s not a Republican; he’s a Libertarian who discovered having an (R) in front of his name will get him more votes. In this way Mr. Couture is no different than Mr. Sheldon, a Libertarian who runs as a Democrat. Secondly, Mr. Couture brings no more to the table than any other follower of Ayn Rand: privatization of public services, unregulated markets, and a misguided notion that to be truly free we should be allowed to do anything we want with our property- regulatory standards, community values and the common good be damned.

Besides, Mr. Couture has no relevant experience and no credentials to make him a serious contender for any political position, much less State Senator. But I do agree with Ms. Peet in that we need new blood in the Senate. And if it happened that Mr. Couture should manage enough votes in the primary election, we’d be looking at a race between two political newbies in the general. And then, either way, we’d get our new blood.

Now that I think about it, maybe I’ll send candidate Couture’s campaign a couple of bucks.

Tom Davis, Shelton