Dinner is served and Skykomish is once again on the menu.
Lame stream media has recently been showering Sky with a series of warm and fuzzy articles, stories and newscasts.
Imagine, with hundreds of towns desperately craving media attention, little ole Sky gets an extra large portion of fluff and puff. What a fluke. What a lucky break.
No sooner did the Monroe Monitor articles fade to black, when along came this glowing story from John Langeler of Seattle’s KING 5 News.
Let’s take a close look at KING 5’s ‘Dog and Pony Show’.
King 5: “Years after a multi-million dollar environmental cleanup in Skykomish was completed, the town’s school still sits on contaminated soil”
The Facts: There was no cleanup. BNSF’s plan was to install a few sparging wells and place restrictive covenants on property owner titles in perpetuity. Plain and simple, BNSF planned on sticking it up Sky’s ass right from the get go.
This plan derailed only after the Skykomish Hotel’s loud and persistent whining caused Department of Ecology lap dogs to get out of BNSF’s bed, which they did, just long enough to cobble together their new and improved, ‘15 foot’ phony cleanup plan.
Removing the top 15’ feet of soil (77,000 cubic yards) may have cost BNSF tens of millions of dollars it hadn’t planned on spending, but it didn’t remove the pollution.
Videos taken throughout the cleanup scam clearly show BNSF’s black, oily pollution wasn’t even visible at 15 feet.
It only began coming into view at the 22 foot level during excavation to install a containment wall.
KING 5: refers to this as “diesel oil seepage”.
The Facts: ‘Seepage’, our ass! This gusher sprayed ugly black oil everywhere. It looked like West Texas Spindletop blowout of the 1920’s.
KING 5: “Streets and sidewalks are pristine”
The Facts: Yes, after six years of the town’s streets being torn up, BNSF finally repaved them. Does KING 5 think BNSF did Sky a favour?
KING 5: “the town benefits from a new sewer and utility system”
The Facts: KING 5 forgot to mention that the multi-million dollar wastewater treatment facility (only needed because of BNSF’s pollution) wasn’t paid for by BNSF.
Skykomish water and sewer rate payers got stiffed with construction and ongoing operational costs, which they cannot afford. Sky high (no pun intended) water and sewer rates will continue to hamper economic recovery efforts.
KING 5: “However, a small part of the cleanup remains. The Skykomish School”
The Facts: KING 5 should be asking ‘who benefited these past ‘ten years’ from the School District and BNSF failing to perform a cleanup?’
- BNSF obviously benefited by not having to perform a cleanup.
- School District attorney Stephan Tan and BNSF attorneys are obvious winners. How many of their own kids have they put through college on this gravy train?
- School District Directors appear to be winners, just like town officials before them who took BNSF money in exchange for doing the railway’s bidding. School Directors aren’t talking, but citizens now have enough experience to draw their own conclusions.
KING 5: “[councilmember] Weiderstrom (Weiderstrom) said the negotiations that have stretched for nearly ten years are keeping the community from moving on from its polluted past”
The Facts: Since contamination wasn’t actually cleaned up, Sky’s polluted past will remain its ‘polluted present and future’.
There will be no ‘moving on’, because Town Attorneys over at the Carson Law Group sat silently, while BNSF greased the palms of corrupt Town officials’ with railroad money.
Kevin: You obviously have no idea what’s going on, so please, mosey on back across the tracks and play with your taxpayer funded kiddie choo choo train (Great Northern & Cascade Railway).
KING 5: “One of the major hangups is the method of contaminated soil removal, according to BNSF and the school district. The current plan involves pumping hot water into the ground, pushing the oil towards a collection area near the river”
The Facts: The ‘current plan’ has more to do with ‘hot air’ than hot water. The ‘hot water’ or ‘in-situ’ plan could only have a prayer of working if the pollution plume beneath the School were isolated, which it isn’t.
Since BNSF covered over town contamination with new soil, asphalt and concrete instead of actually cleaning up the pollution, the School’s diesel and bunker oil pollution is surrounded by the town’s and railroad’s diesel and bunker oil pollution.
Attempts to ‘cleanup’ School District property will be for naught, as surrounding contamination will engulf any ‘cleaned up’ area, causing re-pollution of both soil and ground water, the same as has occurred throughout the rest of the town.
KING 5: “school officials are concerned this [hot water] method could create toxic vapors around the building”
The Facts: Hey KING 5, what about inside the building where children, teachers and staff habituate?
KING 5: “Washington’s Department of Ecology said the oil poses no health risk to humans”
The Facts: If that’s true, why has there been ten years of wrangling between School District officials and BNSF over a cleanup that, according to Ecology, isn’t necessary?
Hydrocarbon vapours do in fact pose a CANCER risk to humans! Check out the signs posted next to the gas pump next time you fill your car’s fuel tank.
Why hasn’t Ecology or the Carson Law Group required BNSF to install toxic vapour monitors in every house and habitable structure sitting on contaminated soil and groundwater throughout Skykomish?
While Mayor Alan A. (Tony) Grider and Town Council are doing their best to keep folks off balance with distractions like the ‘Deception at Deception Falls’, the real question is: Where has the Town’s legal counsel, the Carson Law Group and David S. Carson been this past decade?
Carson attorneys appear to have done an outstanding job representing BNSF Railway and Department of Ecology interests, but an absolutely horrible job representing Town of Skykomish interests.
KING 5: “The school district is asking for… legal protection from any further issues related to the issue, according to the school district’s attorney Stephen Tan”
The Facts: The School District knows better than anyone that there isn’t going to be a real cleanup, so children and staff could continually be exposed to deadly carcinogens, for which they [the District] don’t want to be liable.
Sky is going to remain a dysfunctional, corrupt, polluted, carcinogenic cesspool.
The Bottom Line: Who’s actually behind lame stream media’s efforts to put a ‘happy face’ on Sky’s gaping wounds?
Who’s trying to portray Sky as a clean, green, up and coming machine, rather than the environmentally polluted, politically corrupt, morally bankrupt economic disaster that it is?
Is it King County’s ‘4Culture’, Washington’s Department of Ecology or Warren Buffett’s BNSF Railway?
All three have plenty of blood on their hands, having played starring roles in the ‘Destruction of Skykomish’.
Can warm, cuddly lame stream media articles, stories and newscasts magically transform Sky from a busted up, polluted ghost town into a dazzling rainbow of harmonious economic success?
Can any amount of perfume cover up the stench of Sky’s corruption, folly, pollution and economic malaise?
If you’re thinking this lame stream media hype sounds like one more giant cluster f**k, designed to enrich attorneys, government officials and NGOs’ at your expense, you’d be exactly right.
Yes, dinner is being served, and once again, You are on the menu.
Before Skykomish can experience a bright, prosperous future, it must first abandon the dark side and come into the light.
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