That patchouli-wearing hippie who likes to set houses on fire? He's just a misunderstood "anti-sprawl activist" to the Times. Here's how the paper started a blog post about a string of arsons near Seattle:

For people who are anti-sprawl activists - or have baser motives - a new-built house sitting empty in a previously rural area evidently makes a ripe target for an attack by fire.

You have to love the distinction between people who want to burn down a house for morally pure anti-sprawl reasons and people who want to burn down a house for "baser motives."

In this case, the "activists" left a sign saying they were from the ecoterror group "Earth Liberation Front" and also left graffiti saying "burn the rich." NB to ELF: Wanton destruction of the lives of the rich and powerful has now shifted to blogs and is, for the moment, perfectly legal.

Times: House Fires With a Message in the Northwest

[via NewsBusters]