The ability to anticipate is one of the hallmarks of leadership. When it comes to Communications in Conflict, knowing how offending parties are likely to respond and planning accordingly is part of leadership. Editors and publishers engaged in exposing criminal corporate conduct or sociopathic social movement behavior can expect to be threatened.
The SSA Marine versus Whatcom Watch affair, in which SSA public relations consultant Craig Cole issued a baseless threat to silence exposure of SSAs criminal and sociopathic behavior, serves as a warning of things to come. Yet, the Wise Use/Tea Party alliance led by Cole is not omnipotent. It is extremely vulnerable to the power of moral sanction.
Knowing the history of Wise Use terrorism in Whatcom County helps, and this is what Whatcom Watch enabled by publishing Sandra Robson’s articles in October 2013 and January 2014. Make no mistake, this is why Cole threatened the Watch, because these articles exposed the reality of what SSA is up to in a coherent and comprehensive manner.
Over the next few years, the SSA Marine/Tea Party alliance will undoubtedly continue disrupting the lawful and orderly public process, much like the Wise Use/Property Rights alliance did in the 1990s. More threats will be issued, more racist propaganda promoted, more subversion of Freedom of the Press pursued.
In the end, the ability to anticipate combined with the willingness to once again say “Not In Our Town” will determine whether Whatcom County returns to its racist roots, or evolves to a more cooperative, compassionate, public mindset.
SSA Marine/Tea Party Alliance Timeline
Nov 2012-Mar 2013
Tea Party leader Kris Halterman hosts CERA anti-Indian activists on her KGMI radio show Saturday Morning Live
Tea Party leader Kris Halterman promotes CERA celebrities live on KGMI from anti-Indian conference at Bellingham Lakeway Inn
Tea Party leader Kris Halterman registers PACS with Public Disclosure Commission
SSA Marine funnels funds into Tea Party leader Kris Halterman PACs
Tea Party leader Kris Halterman PACs fund Tea Party slate
SSA appoints Craig Cole to lead Team Whatcom support for Tea Party slate
Whatcom Watch exposes SSA/Tea Party alliance
Craig Cole threatens Whatcom Watch with SLAPP suit
Whatcom Watch editor resigns in fear