When 'Portlandia' first debuted, costar Carrie Brownstein insisted the International Film Channel show was poking gentle fun at Portland.
But during a series of interviews promoting the second season, it's clear that Brownstein has thought seriously about the people who live here and apparently is not completely enamored with them.
For example, in an online interview posted by Salon on Jan. 6, Brownstein says Portlanders are pampered: 'Portland does take itself seriously. It's a very sensitive city. Very self-reflective and it nurtures sensitivity here. People's special needs are taken care of at every turn … That's why people like living here. It's a highly curated city.'
Even the writer of the article, Gail O'Hara, gets into the act, saying, 'Yeah, Portland is better than you.'
In an earlier Salon article, Brownstein even questioned the commitment to local food and the plastic bag ban.
'You know, it takes a certain amount of good fortune, privilege and entitlement to have those things be what you're worried about. And I think that most of us know that. So I think it's a little bit of a stifling way to live, because it's so well-meaning, and so well-intentioned, but, like you said, there's part of you that knows that it's a little bit ridiculous,' she said.
Brady building support among buildings
The anti-corporate personhood movement argues that businesses should not enjoy the same rights as people to contribute money to political campaigns. So what do they make of New Seasons cofounder Eileen Brady, who appears to be receiving thousands of dollars from buildings in her campaign for Portland mayor? The most recent filing show Brady received from $3,500 from Shaker Square and $5,000 from the 1100 Building.
Turns out those are both limited liability corporations, however. Both are associated with real estate developer Al Solheim.
The contributions are a sign of the growing support Brady has been receiving from the business community since being endorsed by the Portland Business Alliance last month.
Voting's ranked choices
With the Charter Review Commission under pressure to wrap up its work soon, the time has come to ask whether those interested in election reform picked the wrong approach.
The committee can place measures directly on the ballot instead of submitting them to the City Council, which seems like the ideal way to propose electing the council by geographic zones. That idea has not been aggressively pursued, however, even though it seems like an easy way to ensure poorer parts of town are represented on the council.
Instead, largely at the urging of the Pacific Green Party, a subcommittee has been studying the complicated Instant Run Off voting process, also known as Ranked Choice Voting. It asks voters to rank the candidates they favor, then uses that information to determine who faces each other if no one gets more than 50 percent in the first election.
Oakland uses that system, but not everyone is happy with the results. Practically everyone has criticized Mayor Jean Quan for her handling of the Occupy Oakland protesters.