Monday, October 02, 2006

More School Shootings

I am disheartened and sickened at the school shootings that have occurred over the past few weeks. From the Colorado tragedy resulting in the death of a 16 year old girl and the sexual assault of other teenage girls to the Principle who was shot and killed by a student upset over a disciplinary action to todays attack at an Amish school killing 3 and wounded 7 others. Folks, we must protect our schools. These are our children. When we as parents turn drop them off at school, we expect them to be safe. I have stated in a previous post that security needs to be addressed at our schools to ensure that our children are safe. Gunman and madmen should not be allowed to think that schools are easy targets. They should be stopped at the gates. Please write to your congressmen and state reps and ask them to make this a priority.

I have a headache...

In watching my Monday night television, I was inundated with negative attack ads by both Jim Pederson and Jon Kyle. For those of you who know me, I really dislike those types of Ads. It has gotten to the point where they are each responded to each others negative ads and are no longer campaigning on the issues they both seem to want to address - Immigration, health care, and national security. Both candidate's web sites are also promoting negativity. In the congressional race, I am seeing the negatively fly by both Harry Mitchell and J D Hayworth - again, more mudslinging and lack of issues. I understand that when one candidate strikes - the other must respond. I just wish they could respond without further mudslinging. For instance, instead of having a actor spout off negativity in the commercial - maybe have the candidate do an ad addressing the negativity of the opponent. I actually saw Jon Kyle do this in one of his ads and in my view it gave him some stronger credibility. Thoughts?

Saturday, September 02, 2006

Recent Rasmussen Report

A recent Rasmussen Report shows Jon Kyl with a 17 point lead in the polls (Kyl 52 - Pederson 35) - see Arizona Senate: No Concern for Kyl.
"Thirty-two percent of voters say they have a 'very favorable' opinion of Kyl. Seventeen percent have a 'very unfavorable' view of the senator. The numbers are less positive for the challenger - 17% have a 'very favorable', and 18% a 'very unfavorable' view of Pederson"
This is good news for us supportors of Jon Kyl ;-).

But - there is some bad news for Republicans - the total number of Americans calling themselves Republicans has fallen - see Partisan Trends: Number of Republicans Declines to 32-Month Low.
"Just 31.9% of American adults now say they're affiliated with the GOP. That's down from 37.2% in Ocotber of 2004 and 34.5% at the beginning of 2006. These results come from the Rasmussen Reports tracking surveys of 15,000 voters per month. The number of Democrats has grown slightly, from 36.1% at the beginning of the year to 37.3% now. Those who claim to be unaffiliated have increased to 30.8% this month. That's the highest total recorded since Rasmussen Reports began releasing this data in January 2004." -- see monthly data here.

Thursday, August 31, 2006

Sad State of Events

Over the past few months, I have read with sadness articles involving violent crime. It may be just my impression, but it seems to be on the increase. From the "Serial Shooters" to the "Baseline Rapist" to the Sexual Assault at Saguaro High to the Sexual Assault of a girl attending a party to the Rapist running rampant in the Ahwatukee Foothills....Not to mention all of the shootings and regular assaults. Do these crimes single a change in our community culture/makeup? Is this the price we, as a community, pay for our rapid growth? What ever the cause, I find it unacceptable! We should be able to live in communities where our wives can go for jogs without worrying about being assaulted; Where our children can go outside and play safely with friends; Where our children's schools are places of safety! So where do we start? More Police on the streets? Increased security in our schools? Stronger background checks on people who work in our schools? Neighborhood Block Patrols? These all seem like a good places to start. I would also go a step further with stronger sentences on offenders (with this comes topics on jail overcrowding). But how do we move forward with ideas like this?

Our first stop is to our communities. Strong neighborhood block watches can help decrease neighborhood crimes. These block watches should have volunteers who walk the neighborhoods beginning in the early evenings to a designated time at night. By having these folks (in groups of two of more) walk the neighborhood, there will be a greater sense of community and increase the overall security of the community. It will also show the 'bad guys' that somebody is always watching.

Our next stop is to our schools. Scottsdale is already working on increasing its security by mandating security officers are on campus from 6:30 am to 5:00 pm, mandating background checks be sent to the school district on all school staff, and changing the hours custodial workers are on campus. However, this should be the minimum standard and it should, at least, be law for public and private schools. I would challenge Tom Horne and Slade Mead to make this part of their individual campaigns.

For the tougher sentences, I turn to our State Reps. They need to make it known that Arizona is tough on Crime. We already have a media dubbed 'Toughest sheriff in the US' - lets put him to work by creating tougher laws and sentences! We need to do more then say we are tough on crime, we need to back it up with strong action.

These are my ramblings for tonight. Please comment if you share my frustrations!

Waste Transfer Station Deja Vu?

Jeepers. It seems that the trash lords are bound and determined to place a waste transfer station in SE Chandler. First, it was the Chandler City Council. That plan went up in smoke and forced out two city council incumbents. Now, its private company Allied Waste. Allied Waste has purchased land on Germann between Arizona Ave and McQueen and are looking into building a transfer station there. And, since they are private and the land is zoned appropriately for this type of industry, there might not be much that can be done - see full story on AZ Central.

I am personally opposed to these stations in neighborhoods and near parks (Tumbleweed park is on the corner of McQueen and Germann). I will be emailing both our City Council and our current State Reps about this issue in hopes to continue to shine light on this issue and to reiterate the opposition the community has to these stations. I would encourage you to do the same!

Sunday, August 27, 2006

District 21 Information

In doing some further research about the District 21 candidates, I came across the following articles and thought I would share the ones I found with you:

Chandler Voters Limited on Choice:

This article discusses the limit choices in the Republican race for District 21. It also gives short bios of the folks running for the house seats.

Arizona Conservative


This site lists out the candidates The Arizona Conservative endorses. The site also has links to state briefs, news, and legislation that The Arizona Conservative finds important.

Steven B. Yarbrough State Legislature Page, Jay Tibshraeny State Legislature Page, and Warde Nichols State Legislature Page

These pages list out the committees these two are assigned, the bills they sponsored, and bios.

Warde Nicols Interview from 2004 Election


Old interview - but still relevant.

Steve Yarbrough Interview from 2004 Election

Yes - old - but relevant.

Opinion Pages on District 21 House Candidates

This page lists out folks opinions on the Republican House candidates and contains an article from Chandler Mayor Boyd Dunn.

Az Central did an interviews with the candidate's running for a House seat in District 21. They asked some pretty tough questions in the interview and I will let you judge the responses.

Interview with Republican Warde Nichols
Interview with Republican Steve Yarbrough
Interview with Republican Donna Wallace
Interview with Democrat Phil Hettmansperger

Well - this is all I have dug up for now using Google. I have added links on the right of the page to each candidate's site as well to assist you with learning more about them. Hope you find this useful.

Friday, August 25, 2006

District 21 Mailing

I have to say I am disappointed with a mailing I received today regarding the District 21 State Legislature campaign. The piece I received today was a 'promotion' card for Warde Nichols and Steve Yarbrough. Unfortunately, this was a smear piece against Donna Wallace (who, by the way, I do not endorse for the position in which she is running). I should have stated from the outset, I am against smear pieces and smear campaigns. This particular piece states "A majority of all who have served with their (Nichols' and Yarbrough's) opponent (aka Donna Wallace) on the Chandler City Council endorse Nichols, Yarbrough". This could have simply stated that a majority of the recent city council members endorse Nichols, Yarbrough and avoided going 'negative'. However, the piece does not stop there. Nichols and Yarbrough obtained quotes from Jay Tibshraeny, Boyd Dunn, Lowell Huggins, Bob Robson, Dean Anderson, and Bob Caccamo. Of the quotes, Lowell Huggins, Jay Tibshraeny, Bob Robson, and, in affect, Boyd Dunn all gave quotes reflecting negatively on Donna Wallace. Only Bob Caccamo and (surprisingly) Dean Anderson gave endorsements without negative words against Donna Wallace. While I'm sure this piece is a response to the negative campaign Donna has been running against them, I had to express my displeasure in seeing their campaign slip to her level.

Sunday, August 20, 2006

Found This Interesting..

I was reading the San Tan Sun opinion pages (http://www.santansun.com/pdfs/081906/081906_Opinion.pdf) and noticed that all of the letters in favor of Donna Wallace we forwarded from her personal email (I know this because the editor made a special note of this fact). I find this both interesting and puzzling. Interesting that she would feel the need to personally forward three emails to the San Tan News and puzzling that she felt the need to do this as well. In the same opinion pages, two council members she served both promoted her opponents (not that I found comfort in the fact Dean Anderson is promoting Yarbrough and Nichols). At any rate, my personal opinion is that Donna Wallace will find herself on the losing end of this election. She did do some good things on the Chandler City Council, but her divisive personality has tainted her good deeds. Donna - you can catch more bees with honey than vinegar....

Recall - 'Called Off'

After a long battle (and few signatures) the recall of the embattled council members Martin Sepulveda and Matt Orlando has ended. Matt Orlando stated he had attempted to meet with recall organizers, but they declined offers to meet to work out their differences - "They were just throwing things out there to see if it sticks. That's unfair to me and my family". Matt Sepulveda, in his typical condescending, arrogant manner had this to say "At the end of the day, they were a small group of very naive, very vindictive people who didn't have the money, didn't have the signatures and lost traction on whatever issue they did have. I didn't enjoy being used as a punching bag by these people. It was a waste of my time."

It should come as no surprise (as I have stated this before) - I am not a fan of Martin. And his comments (at least to me) continue to shine a light on his lack of concern for the people of Chandler. At least Matt stated he attempted to meet with the recall organizers to work out the issues. It seems that Martin either didn't care or - as he put it - didn't' feel it was worth his time....What else isn't worth your time Martin? Schools? Spending Chandler money in a wise and fruitful way? What has happened to the Issues you stated you would deliver on? Did you stance on Mr. Pentz help with 'Creating a user friendly environment for citizens and business to interact with city government"? Has your divisive, condescending nature helped with the other issues you listed on you website (http://martinsepulveda.com)?

- Enhance safety and ease traffic congestion by requiring that major road construction projects be done during off-peak hours

- Committed to improving public safety standards and keeping our neighborhoods safe and crime-free.

- Create partnerships with neighboring communities and businesses to address transportation, downtown redevelopment, and sustained economic growth.

- Partner with the school districts in development of more parks and recreational amenities.

- Develop a business attraction strategy with the Chamber of Commerce and Arizona State University, that will bring the next generation of high paying jobs to Chandler.

Anyway, as I said, I'm not a fan. Anybody who continues to talk down to the people who put him into office and spurs divisiveness instead of open communication does not rate high on my list of good politicians.

Back after a long absence

Sorry everybody - work has been a bit hectic lately and I haven't had the opportunities to update this blog. I am planning to do some updating this week with the latest news in Chandler and, as always, with my thoughts on them. Look forward to hearing from you as well.

Sunday, June 18, 2006

Tired of Partisan Rhetoric..

Over the past few weeks, I've read numerous news articles and blog entries surrounding AZ and National politics. These items contain much of the same old mud slinging and name calling I've come to expect. Republicans bashing Democrats and Democrats smashing Republicans. Both of our political parties claim to have the answers to our nation's problems. Both parties state they will lower taxes and the debt - both parties believe they can solve the immigration problem - both parties claim the other party has ethic problems. The problem is, both parties want to be the 'White Knight' and, seemingly, are unwilling to work with each other to solve these problems. Political infighting, finger pointing, name calling, special interests, and rambling speeches do not help solve our problems. We need smart people who are willing to work together, regardless of party affiliation. We don't need one-upmanship - we need leadership.

Unfortunately, I fear this will only occur with a changing of the guard. For Arizona, I believe this change needs to occur both at the State and Federal level. At the State level, I believe change is needed in both our legislature and executive branches. I say this because neither branch is willing to work with each other on the big issues (Education and Immigration). Am I proposing a same party structure (ie. one party majority in legislature and executive) - NO, I'm not. I'm stating we need to find and elect representatives who listen to the needs of the people and do what is in their best interests and the best interests of the state - rather than follow a party line or doing what is in their best political interest.

At the Federal level - I'm not sure a changing of the guard will be so easy. There are so many 'in-trenched' Congressmen and Senators with huge war chests I feel it will be difficult to push them out. However, it is not impossible (one needs to look no further than our state to see that there can be serious competition to 'entrenched' politicians). This changing, however, needs to be done with care. The electorate needs to cautious with who replaces these individuals and then hold these individuals to their campaign promises and ensure they are acting in the best interests of both the electorate and the country. In addition, the electorate should not stand for any partisan baloney

In short, I'm saying either our elected officials need to start working together or be voted out of office for individuals who will stay focused and work together.

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