Nirvana bassist won't take on Washington congressman

Brad Shannon
McClatchy Newspapers (MCT)

OLYMPIA, Wash. - Critics of U.S. Rep. Brian Baird shouldn't look to Krist Novoselic, former Nirvana bassist and active Democrat, to run for Congress in 2008.

"Let me put it this way: No way. Brian Baird has made good decisions for the 3rd district. I was proud of his vote against the war" in 2002, Novoselic said Tuesday in a telephone interview from his home in Southwest Washington.

Novoselic, who wrote a book about returning to grassroots politics and considered a run for lieutenant governor a few years ago, said a Vancouver, Wash., activist approached him about running against Baird. Word of that solicitation has circulated in Olympia, where antiwar activists are looking for someone to take on Baird after the five-term congressman expressed support for keeping U.S. troops in Iraq for a longer period.

"I haven't supported the war," Novoselic said, adding: "Brian makes good decision for the 3rd district. He's very accessible. He travels the whole district - I don't think we should throw him overboard now."

The 3rd district takes in Southwest Washington, including Olympia, where Chris Stegman of the Green Party says progressives are looking for a Baird challenger. No viable names have turned up.

Novoselic, who plays in the band Flipper, had some appeal for left-of-center activists. He has advocated for instant runoff voting and more citizen participation in voting.

Novoselic said he is displeased by the direction of the Iraq War and doesn't care for the mullahs of Iran or ruling family of Saudi Arabia. But Baird took time to educate himself by traveling to Iraq and the Mideast, Novoselic said, so he supports the congressman's judgment.

"So if he says the surge is working and give it some time, I'm with him," Novoselic said.

It¹s not clear which Republican will take on Baird, who is looking stronger with every election.

Michael Messmore, a retired airline pilot and entrepreneur, ran last election but has abandoned his plan to go on campaigning through 2008.

"I've kind of segued on to other things. I think I figured out how to get elected - I have broken that code. Unfortunately, that code requires 20-hour days between now and Election Day," Messmore said Tuesday. "It would be a doable task." However, Messmore said he doesn¹t think national Republicans "are going to have their stuff together in `08" or that they¹ll make adequate investment in candidacies such as his.

"I don't see them making any meaningful progress in the House or Senate," he said.

Bottom line: Messmore says he'll sit out 2008 but might consider a future run, in 2010 at the earliest.

The June 30 reports at the Federal Election Commission, the latest available, show Messmore¹s campaign is $95,998 in debt from the 2006 run.

The other Republican who ran in 2006 is Daniel R. Miller, but he has raised no money and the state GOP had little enthusiasm for him.

Baird's campaign had $817,165 in cash on hand as of June 30.

So far J. J. Abrams and Rian Johnson resemble children at play, remaking the films they fell in love with. As an audience, however, we desire a fuller experience.

As recently as the lackluster episodes I-III of the Star Wars saga, the embossed gold logo followed by scrolling prologue text was cause for excitement. In the approach to the release of any of the then new prequel installments, the Twentieth Century Fox fanfare, followed by the Lucas Film logo, teased one's impulsive excitement at a glimpse into the next installment's narrative. Then sat in the movie theatre on the anticipated day of release, the sight and sound of the Twentieth Century Fox fanfare signalled the end of fevered anticipation. Whatever happened to those times? For some of us, is it a product of youth in which age now denies us the ability to lose ourselves within such adolescent pleasure? There's no answer to this question -- only the realisation that this sensation is missing and it has been since the summer of 2005. Star Wars is now a movie to tick off your to-watch list, no longer a spark in the dreary reality of the everyday. The magic has disappeared… Star Wars is spiritually dead.

Keep reading... Show less

This has been a remarkable year for shoegaze. If it were only for the re-raising of two central pillars of the initial scene it would still have been enough, but that wasn't even the half of it.

It hardly needs to be said that the last 12 months haven't been everyone's favorite, but it does deserve to be noted that 2017 has been a remarkable year for shoegaze. If it were only for the re-raising of two central pillars of the initial scene it would still have been enough, but that wasn't even the half of it. Other longtime dreamers either reappeared or kept up their recent hot streaks, and a number of relative newcomers established their place in what has become one of the more robust rock subgenre subcultures out there.

Keep reading... Show less

​'The Ferryman': Ephemeral Ideas, Eternal Tragedies

The current cast of The Ferryman in London's West End. Photo by Johan Persson. (Courtesy of The Corner Shop)

Staggeringly multi-layered, dangerously fast-paced and rich in characterizations, dialogue and context, Jez Butterworth's new hit about a family during the time of Ireland's the Troubles leaves the audience breathless, sweaty and tearful, in a nightmarish, dry-heaving haze.

"Vanishing. It's a powerful word, that"

Northern Ireland, Rural Derry, 1981, nighttime. The local ringleader of the Irish Republican Army gun-toting comrades ambushes a priest and tells him that the body of one Seamus Carney has been recovered. It is said that the man had spent a full ten years rotting in a bog. The IRA gunslinger, Muldoon, orders the priest to arrange for the Carney family not to utter a word of what had happened to the wretched man.

Keep reading... Show less

Aaron Sorkin's real-life twister about Molly Bloom, an Olympic skier turned high-stakes poker wrangler, is scorchingly fun but never takes its heroine as seriously as the men.

Chances are, we will never see a heartwarming Aaron Sorkin movie about somebody with a learning disability or severe handicap they had to overcome. This is for the best. The most caffeinated major American screenwriter, Sorkin only seems to find his voice when inhabiting a frantically energetic persona whose thoughts outrun their ability to verbalize and emote them. The start of his latest movie, Molly's Game, is so resolutely Sorkin-esque that it's almost a self-parody. Only this time, like most of his better work, it's based on a true story.

Keep reading... Show less

There's something characteristically English about the Royal Society, whereby strangers gather under the aegis of some shared interest to read, study, and form friendships and in which they are implicitly agreed to exist insulated and apart from political differences.

There is an amusing detail in The Curious World of Samuel Pepys and John Evelyn that is emblematic of the kind of intellectual passions that animated the educated elite of late 17th-century England. We learn that Henry Oldenburg, the first secretary of the Royal Society, had for many years carried on a bitter dispute with Robert Hooke, one of the great polymaths of the era whose name still appears to students of physics and biology. Was the root of their quarrel a personality clash, was it over money or property, over love, ego, values? Something simple and recognizable? The precise source of their conflict was none of the above exactly but is nevertheless revealing of a specific early modern English context: They were in dispute, Margaret Willes writes, "over the development of the balance-spring regulator watch mechanism."

Keep reading... Show less
Pop Ten
Mixed Media
PM Picks

© 1999-2017 All rights reserved.
Popmatters is wholly independently owned and operated.