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Get while the getting is good

OLYMPIA -- Gov. Chris Gregoire is ending her term as president of the National Governor's Assocation and starting her term as chairman of the Western Governors Association.

That sounds a bit backwards, going from the national to the regional, but remember that Gregoire was picked for the NGA in November to fill out the term of West Virginia's Joe Manchin, after he was elected to the Senate. So that wasn't the normal ascension to the top.

In any case, her first big initiative at the Western Governors Association is to boost tourism, recreation and conservation around these here parts, out where buffalo roam and the deer and the antelope play.

"Many of our friends and neighbors have lost their connection to the land just beyond the city limits --  especially the younger generation and poorer, inner city residents," she said at the WGA annual meeting in Coeur d'Alene. The initiative will "help restore that connection," she said.

The initiative has a slogan, as any good initiative must.

Get Out West!

The exclamation point comes with the slogan, it wasn't added just now for emphasis. Providing the correct punctuation is probably a good thing because with different punctuation, and varying inflection, one could convey different meanings entirely.

Get...Out West. Get Out! West? Get out, West. Get. Out West.

Punctuation was one of the problems with a slogan Washington had for a brief time, a few years back: Say WA. Too many people interpeted as Say WA?

OK, so that was a minor problem with Say WA, the bigger problem was the slogan itself. But still.

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Jim Camden
Jim Camden joined The Spokesman-Review in 1981. He is currently the political reporter and state government reporter in the newspaper's Olympia bureau office.

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