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Doug Clark: For a total of 22 flawed propositions …

Envision Spokane, a small group of smug naval-gazing social meddlers, has been working on establishing a charter-changing “bill of rights” for the Lilac City.

Their proposal includes 11 pipe dreams (er, I meant amendments) designed to grant rights such as the environment’s “right to exist and flourish.”

What a strange stroke of coincidence.

I have released Zip It, Spokane. This is my 11-point plan for improving the city and keeping it safe from condescending loons like Envision Spokane.

Isn’t it odd how great ideas sometimes burst on the scene at the exact same time?

I don’t want to get metaphysical. But it’s almost as if there is some all-seeing force or cosmic Twinkie at work.

And so …

1. Never trust glassy-eyed do-gooders who spout New Age gobbledygook about how they can make life a big blooming bed of petunias.

2. The local environment’s right to exist and flourish extends as far as the cord on my electric chain saw.

3. There’s nothing wrong with thinking of the environment. As long as you make sense. For instance: You can’t buy phosphate-enriched dishwasher soap in Spokane County. So I can take your orders and pick up boxes of Cascade detergent next time I go to Coeur d’Alene. This could save a lot of gas.

4. Trying to make Spokane a utopia is a flawed proposition. Have you forgotten about the curse laid on Spokane 20-some years ago by the now deceased Jimmy Marks and his late father, Grover? The Gypsy Curse should be part of the curriculum taught in all Spokane schools.

5. Envision Spokane wants to give neighborhoods the right to “determine their own futures.” What redundant drivel. We already have a perfectly fine system of numbskulls ruining Spokane. It’s called the City Council. Duh.

6. Envision Spokane also wants to give workers the right to a living wage. Oh, yeah? Well, tell it to my publisher. He thinks he has the right to take back 5 percent of my living wage.

7. Here’s the deal. I lose 5 percent of my living wage? You lose 5 percent of the living length of my column. How’s that for fair?

8. City Councilman Steve Corker says Envision Spokane’s guaranteed health care and housing ideas could “bankrupt the city of Spokane.” Mark this moment as the wisest thing Citizen Corker has uttered in his long and checkered political career.

9. Cuba Gooding Jr. is shooting his third Spokane movie. We should rename the Bing theater “The Cuba” to show our appreciation. Bing, after all, has been dead a long time.

And Cuba has made more films in Spokane than Crosby ever did.

10. National studies show that 1 out of every 200 children is a vegetarian. It’s time for our meat-and- potatoes town to take a lead in reversing this disturbing trend. I hereby declare the Domini turkey and salami with Swiss on French (mayo and sweet-hot mustard optional) as the official sandwich of downtown Spokane.

11. Oops! And that’s 95 percent of a column. What a shame. And here I had such a terrific ending.

Doug Clark is a columnist for The Spokesman-Review. He can be reached at (509) 459-5432 or by e-mail at

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