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If running for Mayor of Scottsdale at the same time your wife is Vice Mayor isn’t odd and craven enough for Bob Littlefield, we may have another example.

And, if circumstances are true, it’s disconcerting at best and disqualifying at worst.

According to various social media including that posted by the Catholic Sun, Scottsdale Mayor Jim Lane was apparently invited by Notre Dame Preparatory High School last month to address a group of students about how government works.

Elected officials get a lot of those requests, along with things like ribbon cuttings.

Apparently, candidate Bob Littlefield got wind of Mayor Lane’s appearance and demanded equal time of the school to speak, even raising the prospect of the school’s non-profit status being jeopardized.

When properly and ultimately denied his request Littlefield sent out an alert to supporters to attend the gathering bogusly claiming Lane was going to be discussing the Desert Discovery Center, a controversial north Scottsdale project that Littlefield has been on both sides of.

How sad. 

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It’s like a zit on the Mona Lisa.

Anyone who hikes what is arguably the prettiest trail in the Valley, Tom’s Thumb in Scottsdale’s McDowell Mountains, wonders when they ascent.  What is that house, albeit a very nice one, doing smack dab in the middle of Scottsdale’s landmark preserve?

Wouldn’t it be nice, most everyone surely thinks, to rid the preserve of the blemish?

And so it now shall be.

Every member of Scottsdale’s City Council ranging from Mayor Jim Lane to Councilman Guy Phillips saw fit to split the difference between the city’s appraisal and one produced by the private property owner.

It was a smart move – council Clearasil -- and a wise use of preserve funds.

 

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There’s no greater defender of Scottsdale’s ultimate politician, mayoral candidate Bob Littlefield, than John Washington, the political gadfly who lost to current Scottsdale Mayor Jim Lane by 30 points in 2012.

Like Littlefield, Washington thinks Scottsdale never does anything right despite public sentiment and evidence to the contrary.

And he, like Littlefield, love to dish it out but they sure have a hard time taking it when justifiable criticism arrives to refute his rhetorical incontinence.

Take a recent Washington missive where he pushes back after a Mayor Lane email broadside against Littlefield for being on all sides of just about every issue.

Washington takes his usual jabs at a Lane campaign consultant for owning a polo event and participating in a voter-approved marketing fund for the event for 3 years, seemingly oblivious to the fact that Littlefield himself voted for the funds all three 3 years he sat on the city council, even advantaging the event for complimentary VIP tickets.

Lane’s eblast also raised questions about Littlefield’s contributions and special interests he favors.  The incumbent said something along the lines of Littlefield’s largest contributors over the years being “anti-business unions.”

So what does Washington do rather than review Littlefield’s campaign reports?  He launches into la-la land suggesting Lane is referencing police unions because they crack down on bars and restaurants in downtown Scottsdale?!

Wow.  Someone actually wrote that.  Then again Washington was probably the first one in line at Harkins Theatres when Independence Day returned last month because he wanted to see on the big screen what his little head actually believes:  aliens are coming to Earth.

It would have taken Washington all of two seconds, as it did us, to see Lane was likely referencing a PAC contribution from the United Food & Commercial Worker’s Union. Lane probably needs to spell that out more clearly next time but there’s little doubt that union is no friend to business, even at one time trying to sabotage Basha’s grocery stores with an insidiously bogus claim about baby formula. 

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Art, at its best, makes us contemplate deeper.  That's what good politics can do too.  About issues, people and the direction of a community and country.  So take a look at this interesting read in today's New York Times about how enterprising artists are attempting to do and fuse both during these most challenging political times.

Click here to view the story.

 

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Recently, Scottsdale Councilman David Smith lambasted SkySong and its purported voracious appetite for city favor.  But in criticizing process and politic he seemed to ignore purpose and triumph.

Once upon a time Scottsdale and McDowell was the heartbeat of the southern city.  There stood Los Arcos Mall.  Then time passed it by.  Scottsdale Fashion Square ascended.

Various plans from hockey arenas to power centers promised renewal.  They didn’t materialize.  So ASU took a chance on the area with an “innovation” focus.  At a time when strip clubs and pawn shops were the most notable neighbors it was no small leap of faith.

Sure, SkySong took awhile to find its voice.  But now the chorus of buildings is impressive, as is its design.  It’s evolved over the years as any large project does and must.  To not allow the private sector to call audibles is to be an archair municipal coach of the wishbone.  That SkySong now includes housing is entirely understandable for students and employees that want to be near where they work.  Indeed, the unrelated Mark/Taylor Residential multi-family project nearby on McDowell has been so successful it’s acquiring nearby properties for more parking. 

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By Councilman David Smith

Dear Friends...

Scottsdale's fiscal year ended June 30, so it seems timely to share a report on some Council decisions over the past few months that will affect you and your city's livability.

Your Council adopted a Balanced Budget for next year...that's good! Unfortunately, the Budget isn't sustainable and hasn't been for several years. That's because the money we have for capital improvements is woefully short of the amount needed. The city was closely divided for/against the Bond Issue last November, so there's little new money for capital investments. For the third year in a row, your city's net depreciable assets declined, because we reinvested less than our assets depreciated. This problem will compound over time.

I tried to get rid of the city's sales tax on food, mindful that this most regressive tax costs every Scottsdale citizen about $50 a year ($200 every year for a family of four) and it hits hardest those citizens least able to pay. We managed a small step forward: over the next three years we'll pull food tax receipts out of the General Fund and put them into the capital program. Unfortunately, that won't give citizens the tax break they deserve. We'll try again next year.

Council took several actions that are going to increase density and congestion in your city:

More and more apartments were approved...sometimes with building plans; other times with only promises. Your Council seems determined to provide living quarters for newcomers, regardless of the effect on current citizens.

The ASU Foundation lease for SkySong was amended to increase the building height from 60 feet to 90 feet at the corner of Scottsdale and McDowell Roads. Citizens will see a massive structure...and a precedent has been created. I argued for the City's 1.5 acre at SkySong to be designated as a city park on the corner, forcing the building back further from curb; I wasn't successful.

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Flamboyant boxing promoter Don King used this phrase liberally to describe his rise and that of fighters in his sted who found fame and fortune.

But it can also be said about Javier Munoz.  Son of a doorman.  Raised in a "scary" housing project in Brooklyn.  Openly gay.  H.I.V. positive.  Cancer survivor.  And now playing founding father Alexander Hamilton on Broadway.

Today, Munoz replaces Lin-Manuel Miranda, founder of the uber-hit muscial "Hamilton" as the show's title character.

Only in America.

Read more in today's New York Times.

 

 

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*There’s been a lot of talk (and evidence) of southern Scottsdale, specifically near and along McDowell Road, being the next hot Valley neighborhood. And here’s more evidence: Mark/Taylor Residential’s new apartment community on McDowell is so successful it’s started purchasing adjacent properties for additional parking. And up the street a respected developer is putting in for-sale, contemporary-style condominiums for upwards of $500,000 a pop . . . on Granite Reef.

*There’s a big disparity in cash on hand between the long-shot campaign of Bob Littlefield trying to unseat the popular current Mayor of Scottsdale, Jim Lane. Littlefield reports $24,000 whereas Lane has $140,000.

*The campaign to legalize marijuana is going to lose in November 53.5%-47.5%.

*After Lane defeats Littlefield for Mayor this year (and it will be his last term due to term limits) will Scottsdale’s 2020 race feature Virginia Korte vs Guy Phillips? Speaking of Phillips, is he going through a political transformation? Typically railing against any and all development proposals in the community he just voted to increase height and add 1,000 apartments to a well-connected developer in Scottsdale.

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We didn’t start this opinions courtyard years ago to belabor Bob Littlefield, a former Scottsdale City Councilman and failed Republican candidate for the Arizona State Legislature.

But his fodder has just become so rich, or rather so mendacious.

His hypocrisy knows no bounds.

He was for the Desert Discovery Center before he was against it.

He voted for the tallest and densest project in Scottsdale history before proclaiming he’s against such things.

He says he is for the people yet voted with powerful development interests to take away citizen’s rights when they wanted to challenge his supportlittlefield fb post for them.

We could go on.  And on.  And on.  Which is why it’s necessary to write about Littlefield so much.  He’s the ultimate politician.

But his latest campaign deceit may be the most repulsive yet, even worthy of a new nickname:  Lyin’ Bob Littlefield.

We hate to co-opt Donald Trump’s moniker for primary opponent Ted Cruz after his campaign was so dishonest about Ben Carson, but it’s justified.

Just take a look at this social media post from Littlefield on June 29th.

We get exaggeration in political campaigns.  But Littlefield just flat out lied about Scottsdale Mayor Jim Lane on light rail.

Lane has repeatedly voted against light rail plans and proposals his entire time on the Scottsdale City Council and as Mayor.  He even did so just last month.  Lane was in the majority quashing plans for Scottsdale light rail. So how can Littlefield claim otherwise?  Only with a stunning lack of integrity that comes with a flailing campaign.  Littlefield knows better.  He should be better.

His claims about Lane on the proposed Desert Discovery Center are nearly as bad.  Lane supports a public vote on the project.  In fact, this is how he has laid out his position:

Public Needs Final Say On Desert Discovery Center
"The public should decide whether or not the Desert Discovery Center is built on McDowell Sonoran Preserve land and/or use Preserve funds. That’s my position. I want this process to be up front and transparent on this issue because that’s what our residents deserve before the city spends tens of millions of dollars on the project."

If Littlefield’s numerous flip-flops, hypocrisy and anti-business positions (which are almost autarkic) weren’t disqualifying enough, his latest antics surely do the trick.

 

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Former 12-year Scottsdale Councilman and failed state legislative candidate Bob Littlefield sounds more like he’s running for Mayor of Detroit than Scottsdale.

Everything is wrong in our fair city, his wonting bemoans.  And he alone is the guy to fix it.  He, the campaign trailing, self-professing walking combination of Bernie Sanders AND Donald Trump.

We digress in noting the stunning political gymnastics required of someone calling himself cousin to both a redistributionist and repulser of Mexicans, all the while lacking the philosophical consistency of Sanders and the business acumen of Trump.littlefield at desk

Yet, Littlefield waxes ineloquent to his audiences, trust him and utopia is just around the bend.

He’ll stop more development even though he approved the biggest one in Scottsdale’s history.

He’s anti-business now yet ran in 2002 as a pro-development substitute for George Zraket.

He stands for citizens yet took away their rights for a developer.

He’s for the taxpayer except when he’s voting for subsidies and spending on himself and financial backers.

For 12 long years Bob Littlefield sat on the Scottsdale City Council.  From 2003-2015.  Either he’s to blame for the purported problems, or he was wildly ineffective in being able to bring about the change he says is needed.

So, whether he was politically incoherent or a political invalid it certainly suggests he has little to no ability to actually do whatever it is he says he’ll do.  After all,  if a person can’t prove themselves after three Olympiads, there’s little sense in talking about them as captain of next year’s team.

 

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