Traffic alert: Presidential visit under way

David DeSiga just shared that photo of Air Force One taxiing at Boeing Field (and spectators – they don’t just turn out for those six blue F/A-18s!) – and we got a phone tip with the reminder that motorcade shutdowns of I-5 can lead to West Seattle Bridge backups too (as is apparently the case right now). Per KING5, President Obama‘s quick visit is scheduled to end some time after 3 pm today.

61 Replies to "Traffic alert: Presidential visit under way"

  • sarelly August 17, 2010 (11:56 am)

    First Ave in Pioneer Square is closed (blocked off) at this time.

  • Scar August 17, 2010 (11:58 am)

    Took me an hour to get to work. Thanks, Obama!

    Can’t they use a chopper? Or hovercraft?

  • Carson August 17, 2010 (12:05 pm)

    Why couldn’t he just use a transporter? I saw one when I visited The Science Fiction Museum and I am sure Paul Allen would have loaned him one…

  • CandrewB August 17, 2010 (12:06 pm)

    Bush flew into Seatac in ’08 and had Tukwila/405 on lockdown for an entire afternoon. I also remember a Gore visit shutting down the Kennedy in Chicago in 1999 or 2000. I was stuck in both of them. It’s just one of those things.

  • StayAway August 17, 2010 (12:08 pm)

    Too bad he is wasting our tax dollars to inconvenience us. Let him stay in DC and save the carbon footprint, and do his job. 18 months of campaigning, vacations and golf isn’t enough?

  • mondo August 17, 2010 (12:19 pm)

    Dear Scar:
    On behalf of the President of the United States, I sincerely apologize that you were delayed in getting to work on this single day in history. You are obviously a very important person working at that job of yours that we all depend on so much. The fact that you took precious time from your busy work schedule to log on to a blog and post a comment describing your frustration is evidence of just how serious this matter is. Likewise, I am aghast that you are daily forced to obey traffic signals and wait in a line of customers at Starbucks, further delaying your arrival at your important job.
    From now on, we will all, including the President, step aside whenever we see “Scar” coming along, because we know you have important work to do.

    • WSB August 17, 2010 (12:21 pm)

      Thanks for the specific traffic observations … particularly, thanks in advance for the outlook when a few hours pass by and we see if this edges close to the evening commute.

  • RobertSeattle August 17, 2010 (12:25 pm)

    Walked down to Pioneer Square and saw him… from a block away. Congrats to the owner of that bakery shop – ka-ching!

  • Smitty August 17, 2010 (12:31 pm)

    Hopefully he can squeeze in 18 at Chambers Bay. He needs to play more golf.

  • Carson August 17, 2010 (12:49 pm)

    Chamber Bay is doing a shotgun today, so he is not playing there….

  • dsa August 17, 2010 (12:56 pm)

    Wake up. It can’t hurt to have a president visit.

  • RobertSeattle August 17, 2010 (12:56 pm)

    “Squeeze”? “Chamber”? “Shotgun”? Are you guys trying to get the Secret Service to visit WSB? :-)

  • Carson August 17, 2010 (12:58 pm)

    Hurt to have Obama here? I love it, and I love that it upsets the neo-cons even more!!!!!!

  • al August 17, 2010 (1:13 pm)

    Dear Stay Away,
    Please take your own advice and stay away from this forum. Your political vomit spewing isn’t appropriate here and frankly it’s just plain tired and boring anyway.

  • StayAway August 17, 2010 (1:14 pm)

    No Carson, it doesn’t hurt to have him here, it’s merely an inconvenience for some and a waste of more of our tax dollars. It hurts to see the damage his policies are causing our nation.

  • michael August 17, 2010 (1:17 pm)

    he’s just bill clinton —part 2

  • Carson August 17, 2010 (1:26 pm)

    Damage? Where do you live? Kansas? If you really want to start on wasting tax dollars….besides, if he is here and making campaign visits, taxpayers get paid back for the price of one full fare first class plane ticket!!

  • StayAway August 17, 2010 (1:28 pm)

    No, I live here. If he is here making campaign visits, why are the taxpayers footing the bill, instead of Patty Murray and/or the Dem party?

  • Eliza August 17, 2010 (1:30 pm)

    I heart mondo!!

    That letter made me smile.

  • Kayleigh August 17, 2010 (1:30 pm)

    Someone is actually complaining about being inconvenienced by a visit from the President? You’re kidding, right?
    Nice to see the right-wingers suddenly concerned about a president working rather than vacationing (Bush was quite the workaholic *cough*) and about the environment and carbon footpritns.
    PS My stupid-o-meter just broke.

  • Gina August 17, 2010 (1:35 pm)

    I didn’t know Dino was doing so well in the polls.

  • Isaac August 17, 2010 (1:45 pm)

    Obama’s kinda ‘preaching to the choir’ for showin up in Seattle… but good for him! Also, pretty smart for him to show up on election day; wonder if this will effect the polls at all?

  • Carson August 17, 2010 (1:46 pm)


    Taxpayers are not footing the bill. Duh. The party picks up the tab when its campaigning.

    Please, also, enlighten me as to the damage Obama has done.

    Afghanistan? Not his war
    Iraq? Not his war
    TARP? He didn’t sign that bill (not that its all bad)
    Stimulus? Yes, and most economists agree it saved us from a full depression
    Healthcare? I suppose if you are healthy, wealthy and white (I am) you might call it damage, I say it was about time

    So what damage has he caused? Did I fall asleep, aka Rip Van Winkle?

  • marty August 17, 2010 (1:49 pm)

    al: So, you get to decide what people have to say in this forum? I don’t think so….

  • StayAway August 17, 2010 (1:57 pm)


    Bush was an idiot, and has been gone for 18 months. Enough of blaming/comparing to him already.


    I want to see those reimbursements.

    TARP – Obama voted for it.
    Stimulus – Where are the jobs (unemployment wouldn’t go over 8%, Obama’s words not mine – it’s at 9.5% right now). And another $1T we are indebted to the Chinese for.
    Healthcare – healthy, yes, Wealthy, no. Insurance rates significantly higher now since it passed, yes. Horrible legislation. “Taxed” for healthcare till 2014, then seeing “benefits” kick in.

    The damage he’s caused: bad legislation, increased unemployment, larger government, and more spending than in the 8 years prior to his election. Oh, and no one hiring.

    Maybe you did fall asleep, or have blinders on.

  • Carson August 17, 2010 (2:22 pm)


    You need to open your mind a little. For every right wing wacko that claims the stimulus is not working and use 9% unemployed as an example, there is an equal left wing wacko that says it would be much higher if NOT for the stimulus. Of course, if you only listen to one view, thats the view you believe. You don’t know, I don’t know and if a single economist knew, we would only need his opinion to solve everything.

    Me thinks you just like to complain…..

  • LinWS August 17, 2010 (2:29 pm)

    “he’s just bill clinton —part 2”

    Wish he was, michael, we’d be having boring peace and prosperity. He’s doing a great job of being Dubya 2.

    Carson, take a look at his record. He & his admin is still spying on us, no closure of Gitmo, still funding 2 huge wars, no habeas corpus. His health insurance “reform” plan is more conservative than Nixon’s. Now go pony up $10,000 for one of Oprecious’s fundraisers.

  • StayAway August 17, 2010 (2:37 pm)


    With all due respect, my mind is open. I’m simply tired of hearing politicians who clearly don’t have a clue. I am watching as they are spending away our children’s future with spending policies that haven’t worked in the past and aren’t working now. If they really wanted to stimulate the economy, they would have given taxpayers back large amounts of our cash, which we would have spent, which would have driven business and truly created and saved jobs. Instead, they are feeding our money to the same Special Interests that caused the problems to begin with. Like to complain? Not at all. And I don’t like to be stolen from, lied to or fleeced either.

  • livingundertheWSbridge August 17, 2010 (2:42 pm)

    He’s staying at the Westin Hotel for your info..

  • Carson August 17, 2010 (2:47 pm)


    I guess we have different views. I have never felt more confident than I do today. My wife and I will make more money this year, than last year, and last year we make more than the year before. If I had a 2012 ballot I think I could vote for Obama, again, in pen!!

  • StayAway August 17, 2010 (2:55 pm)

    Well Carson,

    I’m very happy for you and your wife. You are among the very few. Do you work for the government?

    My wife and I will make less this year than we have in the last 30 years, and it is getting worse, not better.

  • Carson August 17, 2010 (3:03 pm)

    I don’t know anyone that works for the goverment who is doing better, thats a myth! I am self employed and my wife works for a large, fortune 100 company. I have also spent the last 2 years re-doing my house, while its not the best investment we have made, we have saved a ton on supplies!! Ignore what Smitty says, its never about working harder, its about getting a great education and working smarter.

  • sarelly August 17, 2010 (3:06 pm)

    Obama inherited a mess. All things considered, I think he’s doing as well as could be expected. The war is still going on, we don’t have health care, we don’t have jobs, Gitmo is still open, and the country’s financially screwed – but what could Obama realistically have done in the short period of time he’s been in office? I’m not saying he’s perfect – but no president ever is. The best we can hope for is someone who won’t make things worse – unlike Bush, who spent his full eight years screwing things up.

  • homesweethome August 17, 2010 (3:14 pm)

    When I was in school we learned to respect the office of the President, regardless of their political party. I am saddened to see this is clearly, no longer taught.

  • Kayleigh August 17, 2010 (3:24 pm)

    Stayaway, I’ll stop the blaming/comparing when Obama and the other grown-ups finish fixing the mess Bush made of our economy and our country.

  • StayAway August 17, 2010 (3:29 pm)


    So clearly you will be blaming Bush until after Obama is out of office.

  • sarelly August 17, 2010 (3:35 pm)

    The office of the president hasn’t been revered since the Watergate scandal (if it ever truly was.) When our leaders don’t to adhere to ethical standards, they don’t deserve admiration. There is no knee jerk respect of anyone any longer, regardless of station in life. Respect has to be earned. Values trump status, dear Home.

  • Carson August 17, 2010 (3:56 pm)

    I blame Obama today for not being a better leader. Great ideas, but his delivery need a little help. the good news is he has 6 more years to get that detail figured out and I am sure the rest of the mess he and we all inherited.

  • StayAway August 17, 2010 (4:04 pm)


    You are getting ahead of yourself. Last I looked, Presidents are only elected to 4 year terms. He only has two years left in this term. In 2012, he will need to convince the majority of Americans that he is worthy of another 4 years in order to be re-elected. Although you may be doing well, if you look at the polls, the majority of American’s don’t share your enthusiasm. Besides, by then, even you might be accepting the fact that the rest of the mess is the one he has made out of the one he and we all inherited.

  • Isaac August 17, 2010 (4:21 pm)

    I hear two sides of the story. I hear the dems saying the recession is over, and I hear the repubs saying it ain’t.
    All I know is that both me and my dad, who owns a national construction company, are suffering heavily because of this.
    @Carson, it’s great to hear that you and your wife are doing well! But I must say, you’re one of the few.

  • Carson August 17, 2010 (4:21 pm)

    Actually, I don’t think it will be that tough. I am sure it will be turned around even more, and at this point, there is yet to be a clear and credible opponent. 2 years is panic time when you don’t hold the office!!!!

  • Carson August 17, 2010 (4:25 pm)

    Issac, when have you ever heard anyone say its over? I have heard we have more pain ahead, never that its over. If you are in construction I hope the one thing you might have learned is when things get white hot again, like they did a few years back, trouble is just around the corner.

  • StayAway August 17, 2010 (4:33 pm)

    This is the Recovery Summer. Isn’t that what Biden said? I think the difference between you and me is, I don’t see it being turned around now, and it is only getting worse, not better. My business revenue has never been worse than it is right now. I see my cost of doing business increasing because of more regulation, more taxation and even a risk of worse should cap & trade be passed, and not something I can pass on to my customers. Credible opponent? While they are no doubt lining up, I think everyone is focused on the midterm elections, not worrying about 2012. The only panic time I have (and many others I know) is trying to figure out if we can make it through two more years of the policies our current government is shoving down our throats, which are holding back my ability to invest, not helping me to invest.

  • Carson August 17, 2010 (4:39 pm)

    Stayaway, I am not sure what you do so its tough to comment. If you are in a business that polutes then you have really gotten a free ride for a long time, and its everyone else who has paid that price. Part of me hopes the Repubs win the mid term, because if the Dems hold control and it doesn’t turn around, even an idiot like Palin could win.

  • Isaac August 17, 2010 (4:50 pm)

    lol Carson, massive ‘second’d’ to that last part.

  • StayAway August 17, 2010 (4:54 pm)

    I’m a technology consultant, not a polluter. I work with technology firms, as well as technology-leveraging green energy firms. Their businesses are off (even the green energy firms) because the cost of doing business in the US is growing higher, and from uncertainty due to an overzealous, over-regulating set of policies. The green businesses are seeing interest, but not any growth, because of costs and inability for customers to invest. Many of my former clients have moved to offshore models, to escape the business climate here. You and I agree completely on the repubs getting control of Congress in November. Then of course, I expect we’ll see the President of No.

  • Carson August 17, 2010 (5:17 pm)


    So you would be against increased regulations that would force companies to green up now, instead of sitting around while China figures out a way to price us right out of the jobs before we even get started? If I was a green energy consultant, I would tell my clients to get retrained in a new field today. When gas hits that over $4 gallon price again, and it will, and we all go looking for alternatives they will be coming in via boats from China. You can blame the business climate here, I blame lack of proper force to get them going. Of course, the good news is I expect WalMart to sell cheap solar panels soon!!

  • David Cooke August 17, 2010 (5:29 pm)

    Scar, thats not very nice….. agree’d with Mondo!

  • Scar August 17, 2010 (5:30 pm)

    Stayaway: It took the Bush admin 8 years to destroy our economy and you blame Obama for not fixing it in a year a half? Nice!

  • Kayleigh August 17, 2010 (5:32 pm)

    Stayaway, yes I plan on blaming Bush along with conservative doctrine, ideology, and policies for most of the country’s ills. I include Democrats who act like conservatives, bigots, corporate suckups, and greed monkeys in this circle of blame. Until conservatives stop holding back the progress of our nation and instead put forth ideas that actually work, I will probably continue to feel this way.

  • Scar August 17, 2010 (5:35 pm)

    I just wanted Mondo to know that I was mondo kidding. Did me asking Obama to think about using a hovercraft not tip mondo off? I was not being serious. I honestly don’t mind sitting in traffic if its for the business of the President. And he should look into the hovercraft — could be stimulative for the hovercraft companies.

  • Cclarue August 17, 2010 (5:57 pm)

    Seeing the folks on the news boo-ing the Presidential motorcade at the Westin is shameful as far as I am concerned. I think W was a horrible President but never in a million years would I boo or holler at him or his motorcade!!!! That is the president of our country…. Have some self respect and show a bit of class people

  • haha August 17, 2010 (7:15 pm)

    Glad he’s gone. I was in LA for work and his campaigning screwed traffic beyond belief. And it seems somewhat a a mess happened up here.

    Also this isn’t a republican or democrat thing, why do tax payers have to pay for a president to campaign? We all know how expensive it is to fly a 747, C-5 and all the other cars and trucks that go with it. Tax payers shouldn’t be on the hook to pay for one parties campaigning. Again, before this gets heated, every president does this, just wondering why we have to pay.

  • StayAway August 17, 2010 (8:45 pm)

    Actually Carlson, yes I am against regulations that “Force” businesses to raise their spending. When we regulate things it invariably raises costs, and raising costs limits hiring and growth or forces business to go to a more business-friendly climate (such as outside the US). When I work with my clients, we identify business models and approaches to best fit into today’s market, and not to rely on government regulations to make a more receptive business environment. It’s foolish to build a business case or business model relying on regulation. Regulations are often fluid or not well defined, which means what regulations apply today can change tomorrow. As well, regulations that are advantageous today, could turn to disadvantageous tomorrow. You can be opportunistic in leveraging a regulatory climate, but that isn’t necessarily a viable business plan.

    Even if you double the price of fuel oil, that still really doesn’t help… it means fewer jobs, which invariably means less disposable income, which means neither companies nor individuals will be able to AFFORD green technologies. If we take Spain as an example, a focus on green business has caused a loss of 2 jobs for each job created. That’s not an effective way to drive an economy or green technology adoption.

    As for solar, it’ll have to come down an awful lot before it can be cost effective here. The best solar technologies in the market today have at best a 15 – 20 year payback here in the Seattle area. Even if you double the cost of electric (which will kill a whole lot of jobs here), the payback is still likely around 10 years, an unlikely investment for the average home owner.

    By the way – Scar, while Bush was a moron, he didn’t destroy the economy in 8 years. The problems with the housing bubble that caused this stem back to Clinton’s era. Bush allowed entirely too much government spending – especially that last two years of his presidency, when the Dems controlled both Congress and the Senate.

    Kayleigh, blame away. The conservatives aren’t holding back progress, they are holding back progressive programs which don’t work. You cannot spend and spend – sooner or later the piper has to be paid. Just remember, the government doesn’t produce revenue, it only consumes it. Who’s going to pay the bills when there are few rich people and few businesses left?

  • nmb August 18, 2010 (12:15 am)

    StayAway: You are a mondo troll.

  • mar3c August 18, 2010 (6:31 am)

    stayaway, et al: the bush tax cuts are still in place, and, in fact, taxes are lower in the u.s. than many other first world countries. lower than they’ve been since this country’s inception. which explains deficit spending and crumbling infrastructure. there’s no inheritance tax this year. capital gains taxes are at an all-time low.
    so if lowering taxes truly stimulates the economy and creates jobs – i.e. “trickles” down – why is unemployment at 10%?
    jobs get off-shored mainly for cheap labor. taxes are a red herring. besides, if you can’t run a successful business and abide by the laws and regulations of this country – and pay a decent wage to boot – good riddance.

  • StayAway August 18, 2010 (10:10 am)

    nmb – I’m not a troll. I’m a citizen, a taxpayer and a businessman.

    mar3c – low taxes alone don’t drive growth or hiring. That said, higher taxes do drive businesses to more business-friendly places. Ask California and New Jersey, who have seen an exodus of businesses moving away to other states because of the burden of doing business there.

    Unemployment is so high, and businesses aren’t hiring, for a number of reasons. Consumer spending is very low, because with 17+% REAL unemployment people are tightening their belts. Consumers are responsible for 70% of our economy, and we, the people can’t spend cause we’re broke. The massive amounts of spending that the government has done has not been “creating” jobs, but has been propping up special interests and sucking capital out of the market. Businesses aren’t hiring because they see increases in costs coming down the pike with Obamacare, and the end of the Bush Tax cuts, along with other uncertain regulatory costs such as the financial reform bill and Cap & Trade, as well as a VAT. Banks aren’t lending because of an uncertainty around what the Financial regulation reform bill means, as well as the government taking a more active role in what they can and cannot do.

    I’ve had to cut my business expenses down immensely in order to keep the doors open at all – I’ve eliminated office space, as a last resort had to lay off people, and not purchase new equipment that we could use because I can’t do that without laying off another person. I abide by the laws and regulations and pay my taxes, something many in our government clearly don’t do, but am finding it harder and harder to run a successful business because my costs keep going up. I can’t keep raising the rates my customers pay, with my costs rising from more taxes and more regulations. as they then will go to offshore firms who can pay lower salaries and have much lower costs of doing business. Is it advantageous for them to? I’ve run a successful business for 20+ years, and the climate the idiots in DC are creating is making it more and more difficult to keep it afloat, not just because it is impacting my cost of business directly, but is impacting how my customers are running their businesses and spending. How are you going to fix unemployment if you say good riddance to the many businesses like mine? My employees are well-cared for as we have always run a successful business, but I can’t invest in growth in this climate, as I can’t see a retunr for that investment.

    Tell me marc3c, have you ever run a business?

  • sarelly August 18, 2010 (11:10 am)

    We get at least a couple of resumes every week, either from recent college grads or people who’ve been in the field for a long time and are clearly older. Big architecture firms are going after little jobs they’d have turned their noses up at before, which cuts into the territory of the smaller firms for whom those little jobs are their bread and butter. Engineers are also having a hard time, as well as construction companies. There’s a whole slew of college grads from hifalutin architecture and design programs who can’t find work. It’s scary out there. And it costs a lot of money to keep employees.

    So, StayAway, what would you recommend? What do you think the solution is? If you were in Obama’s shoes, what would you do?

  • mar3c August 20, 2010 (5:26 am)

    no, i haven’t run a business, but i am employed by a small business, and i’m watching the bigger firms with which we compete “buy work.” i.e. submit bids that garner them a net loss just to get work. besides, we don’t all have that entrepeneurial spirit; someone still has to cook and wash the bottles. that doesn’t make me ignorant or unqualified to discuss economics, though.
    it is a crappy climate right now, especially for construction. but it isn’t taxation that created this climate. it’s supply-side economics.
    the government is spending money on a massive scale, yes, but not as a permanent solution. it’s a stop-gap to keep businesses afloat and employees solvent. yet conservatives will find any excuse to call democrats “socialists.”
    trivia question for you supply-siders: when reagan cut the top marginal tax rate by almost 50%, what happened to deficits and debt? bonus question: what happened to employment?

  • StayAway August 20, 2010 (10:23 am)

    marc3c –

    The current economic climate was caused by the housing bubble, which was a direct result of conditions ultimately created by the Community Reinvestment Act. The continued decline in employment is a result of supply-side economics, since when no one can spend money on goods and services, businesses can’t continue to support employment and wages. When consumers don’t have disposable income, we don’t spend. That, by the way, is not different here than it is in England, Canada, Russia or Venezuela – if you don’t have money to spend, you don’t (unless you are a government).

    Most of the money the government is spending is not going into consumers hands, so we’re not seeing any value from it. As well, once the government starts spending, it doesn’t step back, it only increases. Show me something the government does that is intended to be “temporary” that is. Income taxes were originally “temporary”, we see how that has worked out. The costs of government continue to rise – more and more government employees, higher wages than private sector, pension costs, liabilities such as Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, programs that admittedly (by the government) enable fraud and waste, and INTEREST we have to pay on the debt the government is generating in order to fund that spending. The government is a CONSUMER of capital, not a PRODUCER of capital. When we are paying $100B’s in interest rates, this is WASTED money that has to come from somewhere, and is taken from consumers and the capital market, where it could be used to CREATE jobs. Look at Greece for a great current example.

    Government is great at starting things, but it’s horrible for the most part at running things. Government has NO incentive for efficiency.

    Under Reagan, after the tax cuts, GDP grew approximately 23% over his term. Tax revenue increased by approx $100B over the 10 years after the tax cuts went into effect. Employment increased 2% or more per year. Reagan’s big mistake was he didn’t CUT government spending, thereby creating a deficit and debt. However, our debt to GDP ratio was around 19 – 20% during that period, not 25+% as is current.

  • StayAway August 20, 2010 (10:58 am)


    If I were in Obama’s shoes, I’d be doing things that would put money in the hands of the taxpaying consumers, the very people we need to spend in order to incent hiring.

    I’d cut taxes beyond the Bush Tax cuts.

    I’d put the government on a MAJOR crash diet, and cut government spending by 10% per year for the next few years.

    I’d ask the Congress to repeal the HealthCare bill, which doesn’t lower costs (it will raise them), only adds people onto Insurance roles (or fines them if they don’t get insured).

    I’d lead by example, and cut ALL government employee salaries by 10%, including The President, Vice President and Congress, as well as eliminate Presidential, VP and Congressional pensions. Let ’em have a 401K just like the rest of us, most of them are millionaires anyway.

    I’d stop giving taxpayer money to special interests, corporations, unions, and friends of politicians to buy votes and support.

    And I’d stop jetsetting around in a 747 on the taxpayers dime.

    I’d open up more short term oil and gas production in the US to drive hiring and to stop sending money and jobs overseas. I’d be smart in investing in next generation technologies to wean us from all and gas, such as nuclear and hydrogen cell technologies. We’re ingoring the problems of electric battery powered cars will create in terms of adoption, generation capacity in the electric grid, and what we’ll do to dispose of tons of electric batteries that expire every few years in these vehicles.

    I’d penalize companies with taxes on each H-1B visa jobholder they have on staff, and put a moratorium on any new H-1B visas in the foreseeable future.

    And I’d incent companies to hire, by making our corporate tax structure competitive with other countries whom we are losing businesses to.

Sorry, comment time is over.