The Conservative's Corner
The 1988 Democratic nominee for President Michael Dukakis talked a lot about the “Massachusetts Miracle,” touting his perceived Bay State successes.
It’s a lesson that could play out this year in the 2014 Arizona gubernatorial campaign, either by Mesa Mayor Scott Smith’s GOP opponents, or presumptive Democratic nominee Fred DuVal.
Smith likes to espouse his achievements, and there are no doubt some, but there are also very big problems.Read more
Proximity to Sky Harbor, freeways, a great downtown, the Desert Botanical Garden, Phoenix Zoo, the Indian Bend Wash.
“South Scottsdale” should be a prideful label, not a derogatory one.
Or maybe the big talk but little action from both public and private sectors that has yielded an ASU office facility, but one without urban coattails.
Politically, there is no reason to keep doing the same thing. It hasn’t worked since the demise of Los Arcos Mall and the failure to realize the voter-approved arena district. Countless task forces and master plans aren’t getting it done.
Light rail has been put on the table as an area addition by a contingent on the council. Another idea is to connect the Indian Bend Wash and Papago Park via an elevated trail down the middle of McDowell Road.Read more
With the exception of Bill de Blasio’s New York City where the mayor there is declaring war on charter schools, educational choice is gaining more acceptance across the country to the constant displeasure of teacher’s unions. They can block for a time but not forever the tide of history. This is the lesson of all civil rights, of which school choice can rightly be called one.
Here in Phoenix a new group, despite protestations of cooperation to the contrary, are taking dead aim at many of the dead end schools in the core of Phoenix with an insurgence of new charter schools there.
But it’s in Glendale, Arizona where we gain another reminder of how far school choice has come, and why it ultimately will be the norm, as we see in higher education.Read more
As the narrative goes Mesa Mayor Scott Smith single-handedly willed a backward East Valley behemoth into America’s most progressive city.
That’s a slight exaggeration and there’s no doubt Mayor Smith has done a commendable job getting results. Additionally, he is an engaging fellow that’s got a little Chris Christie without bridges while being a tad more cherubic.
But if the justification for the GOP nomination for Governor in 2014 is the best performing East Valley Mayor doesn’t Smith get the silver medal to Gilbert Mayor John Lewis?
Smith’s results in Mesa resemble Sammy Sosa. The former slugger used steroids. Smith used subsidies. A lot of them.Read more
Recently an article in the Scottsdale Independent queried whether Scottsdale was losing its luster. It cited the election losses of the General Plan, a Scottsdale School District bond and the recent city bond package.
So let’s take stock.
The city just debuted an amazing new facility at WestWorld that just hosted the world’s largest car auction called Barrett-Jackson and is hosting the Scottsdale Arabian Horse Show, the largest in the world.
Just blocks away is the home of the world’s largest golf tournament.Read more
You don’t see this every day. And that’s the hometown newspaper of a Super Bowl host city harshly criticizing the costs of the event, as well as the local NFL team that makes landing the third largest sporting event in the world (behind the Olympics and World Cup) possible.
But that’s what the Glendale Star, the long-timer paper of record for Glendale, Arizona did in its most weekly editorial. It pulls no punches and makes for fascinating reading, even as we disagree with the premise and support Glendale’s call to be reimbursed for public safety costs associated with the big day in 2015. Here is a link to the editorial.
Courtesy of a front page article in today’s Arizona Republic (“New Charter School Push In Phoenix Core”) let there be no doubt about what’s taking place. Having pillaged upper income school districts like Scottsdale’s school choicers believe their moment has come to strut proudly and loudly in lower income areas, proving once and for all the superiority of their approach for students, parents . . . and teachers.
Oh, both the Phoenix Union District Superintendent and backers of the multi-charter school initiative said all the right things and played nice.Read more
Such a case can really be found in 2004. In the form of John Kerry. Not loved but viewed as quite competent Kerry was a weak frontrunner for the 2004 Democratic nomination for President, kind of like Ken Bennett who sits atop most polls for Arizona Governor in 2014 but who most observers think we will toppled due to limited fundraising and a boredom factor.
And Kerry was toppled . . . for a while. By Howard Dean before The Scream went too shrill. And John Edwards almost caught Kerry in Iowa, but didn’t have the juice to challenge in New Hampshire. He was apparently saving that for someone else.
But then the Democrats returned to Kerry having yawned about him in the first place. He waged a tough campaign against George W. Bush, like Bennett undoubtedly would against Fred Duval.Read more
And why shouldn’t the Grand Canyon State? After all, the competition is stiff with no income tax states like Texas and Nevada.
Furthermore, the private sector constantly engages in a never ending quest to land the whales. At casinos. In hotels. Country clubs. Restaurants. New homes. Season tix. Sponsors. So if Adam Smith’s disciples understand the benefit of attracting the biggest wallets why shouldn’t government?
If politics is a concern be as radically appealing to aiding the poor as one might be to recruiting the rich. Just like anti-illegal immigration activists should be the biggest proponents for legal immigration and the ingenuity and entrepreneurs it yields, unless their true colors can be found on a Confederate flag.Read more
At a time when Paul Ryan and others are smart to be channeling Jack Kemp and re-engineering GOP messages for the lower and middle classes, it is an appeal to the highest crust that could be a good move here in Arizona.
This week Phil Mickelson is defending his Waste Management Phoenix Open. A Sun Devil, he is the most beloved golfer in Arizona and recently made waves talking about the onerous tax rates in California.
This prompted a national discussion. The Arizona State Legislature should act.Read more
Sometimes you just can’t make this stuff up.
The last time Paradise Valley paid much attention to the large, empty real estate between Mockingbird and Scottsdale Road and Lincoln and Indian Bend Roads was November, 2008. Then, Paradise Valley voters were wise to pass by a nearly 2-1 margin a mixed-use plan that had a new Ritz-Carlton at its core.
While the entitlement granted by the then Paradise Valley Town Council was aggressive it did not jeopardize the town’s character.
Fast forward to 2014. The developer of the project is now saying its generous entitlement wasn’t, and isn’t enough.
Why? Because what are they to do with a big chunk of their plan now that Scottsdale approved a large new apartment project that will stare into the back of its project? That 4-story project has now been built and opened on the northwest corner of Scottsdale and Lincoln.
The attorney and lead lobbyist for that apartment complex was none other than the same one the Ritz developer employs. And did the Ritz ever state any opposition to the apartment plan? Of course not. Why? Because it knew the increased density in Scottsdale could be used to justify absurd new requests of Paradise Valley.Read more
The cathedrals of Europe tend to be of the religious variety, serving both as cornerstones of faith and tourism.
Here in the United States our cathedrals are the shrines of sport. Wrigley Field. Fenway Park. Augusta. Churchill Downs.
They are magnets for economic impact.
In Arizona we do have a rather Grand, natural cathedral three hours to the north. Closer to home some of the country’s largest municipal preserves located in Scottsdale and Phoenix remind us of the Valley’s special nature.
When it comes to the man made variety we do have a mansion called Wrigley and a remarkable Frank Lloyd Wright winter home. But we don’t have anything that truly captures the bucket list imagination of the tourist besides the general concept of spring training.
The pool at Chase Field was a noble attempt but for the Los Angeles Dodgers pissing a little vinegar in it last year it hasn’t served as much of a discussion point.Read more
From Elect Bolick for Arizona
Michigan recently became the fourth state to approve Right to Try. On election day, Arizona voters will have the chance make our state the fifth to do so by voting yes on Prop. 303. I support Right to Try; but my liberal opponent, Eric Meyer, opposes it.
Right to Try was home-grown in Arizona by the Goldwater Institute. It would allow terminally ill patients to access experimental drugs, prescribed by their doctors, that have passed the safety phase of Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approval.
So far, Right to Try has passed overwhelmingly across the country with support from Republicans and Democrats alike.
E.J. Montini, one of our state’s most liberal columnists, wrote that “Prop. 303 isn’t about politics. It’s about hope.” Also endorsing the measure, the Arizona Republic says that Prop. 303 “provides doctor-confirmed hope to the terminally ill. This is easy to support.”
Apparently not so easy for Eric Meyer, who tried to prevent Arizonans from even having a chance to vote on Right to Try. Among hundreds of legislators in five states who so far have voted on Right to Try, he is the only doctor to vote no.Read more
Felicia Rotellini News release:
That is what major newspapers are saying about our campaign. I am honored to have their endorsement and support to return the focus of the Arizona Attorney General's office to its core mission: prosecuting criminals and protecting Arizona families.
Our team has been working hard these last 20 months and people are taking notice. Take a look at what some of the editorial boards had to say:
In close call, Rotellini for Arizona attorney general
"Having worked in the office, Rotellini will face no learning curve. She knows which divisions are most vital and need the most attention... She understands — and can mentor staff attorneys — on how to go after consumer fraud and the excesses of large companies. That makes her experience more germane to the work of the attorney general"
We are pleased to announce the launch of the first NO on Proposition 480 TV ad today.
Proposition 480 would impose a $1.6 billion tax increase on Maricopa County property owners for a new government run, county hospital. Many believe that the price tag for what amounts to a blank check is too high for a special district with a relatively narrow mission.
Supporters of Prop 480 don’t want to talk about the price tag. Neither do they want to explain how they are spending $600,000 of taxpayer money to run a feel good branding campaign in conjunction with the referendum campaign.
If you agree that Prop 480 is a bad idea at a bad time, please forward this ad to your friends via e-mail, Facebook, Twitter or other social media outlets. Please help us get out the word that the price of Prop 480 is just too high.
Click here to view the ad, coming to a TV near you. Also please go to our website, www.VoteNOon480.com for additional information.Read more
By Felecia Rotellini
With the campaign heating up, I want to make sure you know what this race is really about and, if elected, what I will do as Arizona’s next Attorney General.
Here are a few of the issues I will focus on:
Consumer Protection Initiatives to Protect Arizona’s Senior Citizens
We need an enhanced Senior Fraud Unit within the Consumer Protection Section of the Arizona Attorney General’s Office. This Unit will work closely with the Arizona Department of Economic Security’s Adult Protective Services; local, state and federal law enforcement agencies; the criminal division of the Attorney General’s Office; private sector attorneys and non-profit organizations to focus resources on the scams and fraudsters who pose the greatest threat to Arizona’s senior citizens.
Protecting Arizonans from the Mexican Drug Cartels, Human Smugglers, and Organized Crime
I propose a two pronged attack of simultaneously and vigorously prosecuting and demanding harsh prison sentences for cartels and human smugglers, while at the same time destroying the ability of the criminals to financially profit by utilizing Arizona’s RICO statutes to seize their assets.
Over the past four years, the Scottsdale City Council has worked to keep taxes low, costs down and our quality of life the best in Arizona. None of these decisions happened in a vacuum. It required a team effort from a dedicated and responsible Council. I’m pleased to announce an integral member of that team has endorsed my campaign for Scottsdale City Council – Mayor Jim Lane.
I am excited to continue our great work together on the Council and proud to have his endorsement.
“I equally support Linda Milhaven for Scottsdale City Council. Linda possesses the leadership ability and strong work-ethic Scottsdale must have to continue to be the best city to live, play and work. Her proficiency at understanding complex issues and providing clear solutions makes her a valuable member of the City Council. She is dedicated, passionate and effective at improving Scottsdale’s quality of life.”
- Scottsdale Mayor Jim LaneRead more
Maricopa Integrated Health System is spending $600,000 of YOUR tax dollars so you will give them a taxpayer funded $1.6 billion blank check.
"Even ignoring the potential legal issues, using $600,000 of taxpayer money to fund an ‘image campaign’ while simultaneously running a campaign asking those same taxpayers for a billion dollar bond is unseemly,” said Victor Riches, VP of External Affairs at Goldwater Institute.
Please see the Arizona Capitol Times story below. ____________________________________________________________________
Hospital district pursues taxpayer-funded ad campaign
Published in the Arizona Capitol Times on October 3, 2014
A hospital district has spent $570,000 on an ad campaign launched two weeks after its board called for a nearly $1 billion bond election.
The taxpayer-funded advertising campaign is running at the same time a separate, political group pushing for passage of the bond proposal launches a nearly $800,000 television ad campaign.
Included in the tax-funded ad campaign are a series of television commercials that promote areas of the Maricopa County Medical Center the bond proposal promises to improve. The advertisements don’t mention Proposition 480, the Nov. 4 election or advocate for a vote, any of which would be illegal.
The advertisements feature testimonials of people with real-life experience in the county’s mental health system and burn unit, and feature doctors who work in the trauma center and in the residency program.
Mike Robertson, senior vice president of marketing and public affairs for Maricopa Integrated Health System, said the ad campaign was not designed to win votes.
“What you’re seeing is me fulfilling my responsibility of getting a communication campaign out there to start educating Maricopa County residents with regards to what we do, and this is but chapter one,” said Robertson, who joined MIHS in March.
The political ad features Bryan Jeffries, president of the Professional Firefighters of Arizona, a firefighters union, stumping for a yes vote to improve the trauma center, burn center and mental-health system. A voice-over says the Maricopa Medical Center is where first responders are taken when they are injured. Other than that, however, there is no mention of the hospital or the proposed $541 million to $548 million reconstruction of it.
The MIHS board unanimously approved putting the public financing on the ballot May 28. The $935 million in financing, which will cost the owner of a $150,000 home about $18 per year, would pay for a new, scaled-down Maricopa County Medical Center, an improved mental-health system, improved neighborhood clinics and upgrades to the hospital’s nationally renowned Arizona Burn Center and the hospital’s trauma center.Read more
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