June 1, 2017 Dena Jensen
Time to talk to your friendly local businesses who are members of the Whatcom Business Alliance, but are unlikely to want to be part of a strongly pro-fossil-fuel-dependancy organization, and back up Stand.earth’s wise appeal to them. LIberty Road’s Kris Halterman is calling the request send out by Stand as (pretty sure caps are in order) a “THREAT LETTER!”
Ms. Halterman had Jim McKinney (Executive Director of Common Threads Northwest, which was an organizer of the May 16, Wake Up Whatcom County rally) on her KGMI Saturday Morning Live radio program on May 27, and one of the things they talked about was the letter that Stand.earth had sent out to selected WBA members. Likely it’s going seem like a long campaign season with material like what was on this May 27 show of hers going out into the Whatcom County universe. Please, help set people who may be on the receiving end straight!
The discussion gets off to a shaky start in the realm of reality as far as I can tell, because I can’t find any evidence that Alex Ramel “was part of RE Sources” or that he was “involved with Futurewise” and according to Stand’s Staff & Board webpage he is not a board executive for Stand.earth. I also can’t dig up evidence that Matt Krogh served a term on the Bellingham City Council. Maybe someone knows different.
Below is an excerpt from her show where that discussion took place:
Kris Halterman: Let’s talk about this letter being sent out by – and it is signed by Alex Ramel, who is, who was part of RE Sources. He’s been involved with Futurewise. He’s now one of the board executives on Stand.earth. And Matt Krogh, Matt Krogh who used to sit for one term on the Bellingham City Council was also a director and leadership at RE Sources and is now one of the Executive Directors at Stand.earth and their mailing out threat letters to people! Threat letters!
Jim McKinney: Threat letters to businesses,
Kris Halterman: Mmhmm
Jim McKinney: that were involved with Whatcom Business Alliance
Kris Halterman: Yes
Jim McKinney: that was involved in this rally
Kris Halterman: Yes.
Jim McKinney: that is helping to coordinate people for business
Kris Halterman: and educate them
Jim McKinney: educate them and advocating for business interests, non partisan issues, and they are threatening people to, um basically in this letter.
Kris Halterman: Read, read that first paragraph!
Jim McKinney: “We are writing to request that you immediately cancel your membership and withdraw your participation in the Whatcom Business Alliance. We appreciate the contribution you make to the community and are concerned that WBA’s ongoing promotion of fossil fuel interests will be detrimental to your reputation.”
Kris Halterman: And then the last paragraph.
Jim McKinney: Yeah, so, “Please con-” – see – “We would be amazed to learn that your company is affiliated with and directly or indirectly supports these kinds of inflamatory messages and divisive tactics. As the 2017 Council elections approach, these issues are likely going to garner increased attention. We will be working to daylight the deleterious role that the WBA is playing in local public policy. We urge you to take the opportunity now to avoid being caught up in this growing controversy.”
Unbelievable threat tactics to small businesses that are trying to go to an organization to help advocate for their interest, and in an absolutely non-partisan way. But, it’s important. This is what’s going on in our community right now. The threats and attacks and the overwhelming fearmongering on their part and then they turn around immediately and say oh you’re fearmongering ’cause you’re telling 3500 people that their mon- their life-savings was just destroyed.
Kris Halterman: And these two individuals, as well as everybody that’s on that board at Stand.earth all, they make a living. They get paid. They’re not workin’ for free folks. They get paid for what their doin’. And they are out there advocating every day for every anti-fossil fuel, ‘It’s going to destroy the earth”, uh, “You’re life is over and, and making people, uh, you know families, they’re causing problems with famililes, with businesses, with relationships by sending out this type of letter showing their total disregard for the community and the tax base. “
The discussion that is transcribed (by me, to the best of my ability) here starts at about 34:50 on the audio recording: http://smllibertyroad.com/saturday-morning-live-for-may-27-2017/
Heads up: also announced on the same show, another Wake Up Whatcom County rally is being tentatively planned for late July 2017.
I sent my own letter out to numerous WBA members in early April. Luckily I had compiled a list of WBA members I thought might be receptive to hearing the information I was sending out when I was working on my letters, because it appears that the WBA has since taken their member list off of their website now! Here’s the list (the links in the PDF seem to work, too) for you to use to contact whichever businesses you feel appropriate. 🙂
Also, here’s a link to the slide show that I attached to my letters: