Monday, September 27, 2010

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Total Recall - 2010

It's official! In an clear statement of disapproval by the voters,
(And so quickly too!)
That's right dedicated readers, the petitions were recorded today and joining Babs and Machine Gun Joe will be Anderson, Kelley, Lukkasson and even Lizzarraga, the only Councilperson to receive enough votes to avoid last spring's run off. 

The record breaking voter turn out  in the Mayoral election meant that an unprecedented number of signatures was necessary (152), but that amount was easily exceeded by a third more than the required minimum for all four recently elected officials. An amazing feat for a summer "ghost town" 

Citizen outrage is at an all time high after the treasonous conduct of recently elected members of the Quartzsite Common Council and the malicious persecution of popular "People's Mayor" Ed Foster.

Let's compare May 18th votes to the verified number of recall signatures. With 1234 Registered Voters and 669 Cards Cast  (54.21%)

Patricia Anderson 317 votes, versus 217 recall signatures

Robert Kelley 316 votes, versus 209 recall signatures

Jerry Lukkason 322 votes versus - 211 recall signatures

and Jose Lizzarraga received 273 votes in the March 9th primary with:
Registered Voters 1346 - Cards Cast 506 (37.59%) 
211 recall signatures were easily obtained.

Hey Joe, it's not about "sedition"'s about accountability. You guys have been pursuing personal agendas instead of doing the PEOPLE'S business! You guys talk about "the Town" as the entity that needs protecting...but the PEOPLE are the Town and clearly, they need protection from corrupt public officials. YOU are the reason that recalls are a power vested in the PEOPLE. (So are initiatives and referendums.) A few thousand dollars spent on a recall is a cheap lesson in civics, compared to a hundred and eighty thousand for Pam Walsma to protect you from the PEOPLE you were elected to serve. There's an old political adage that goes: "Pay me now with your vote - or pay me later with your seat!"

Why do I have gleeful  visions of the Von Trapp Family Singers?
What is "Goodbye" ? I'll take epitaphs for a thousand, Alex...

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Ad hoc - post hoc

Just when you thought it couldn't be done, last nights Town Council meeting managed to lower the bar for Quartzsite politics yet again. How low can you go? I don't know..everybody limbo!

My, my, my, where to begin...the mayhem was brewing even before the meeting was called to order. When Mayor Ed Foster announced that he would be giving the invocation, Councilwoman Patricia Anderson and tho other haters began to wail...all Councilpersons refused to stand for the prayer. (Here's a novel idea, if you truly believe that our mayor is too unholy to bless the meeting, then I make a motion to actually separate church and state and do away with he invocation all together!) Councilman Jose Lizarrage made a motion that Vice Mayor Cowell chair the meeting. I guess he doesn't understand that legally, the position of "vice mayor" only exists in the absence of a mayor. These childish actions set the tone for what was to follow.

The only "new business" on the agenda was Vice Mayor Barbara Cowell's "Discussion and possible action regarding the ad hoc Ethics Committee recommendations concerning Mayor Foster's "official conduct" and " renounce and disclaim all of the actions and communication of Mayor Foster" etc. etc. followed by Mayor Foster's agenda item: "Discussion and possible response to the ad hoc Ethics Committee".

Let me preface the following recap by clarifying the fact that using the word "legal" or "ethical" in a sentence does not necessarily make it so. The Town's "Procedures and Policy Manual - Legal and Ethical Standards of Conduct" is not actually law, code, or statute of any sort, despite Alex Taft's defamatory insinuations to any publication that would waste the trees to print them.(which may be an ethics violation in and of itself as well as a crime under Arizona Revised Statutes 41-772)

Before proceeding to the new business, Mayor Foster explained that Council was "in illegal territory", and should the Council choose to proceed with that knowledge, they would be exempt from the "Executive Protection Clause" and could therefore be held personally liable in a civil action. Apparently, it's a "damned if you do, damned if you don't" situation our leadership has put the taxpayers in , where the only real winners will be the attorneys. Councilman Lizarraga commented that "We were told by our insurance that if we did not do something, we could be held liable."

Mayor Foster inquired as to whether the ad hoc Committee was proceeding under recommendations or legal council made by Town Attorney Pamela Walsma, and made it clear that nowhere in Arizona Revised Statutes 9-240 Powers of Common Council was there a provision for the Council to take sanctions against one of it's members. Foster asked Walsma if she could provide legal justification for such action, and would she sign a statement approving the Committee's recommendation to do so. Taking a page from the Dan Field play book, Walsma waffled and back peddled just as we would expect. She stated "I do not approve of all the things they do" and declined to sign Mayor Foster's document.

Mayor Foster also offered the Council the opportunity to deal with the matter in "executive session", but the Council declined and a video and audio recorded public free for all ensued.

The unethical Committee's recommendations included a demand that, as Mayor, Ed Foster stop publishing The Mineshaft,  cease attending meetings which include the La Paz County Economic Development Board, and not travel at Town expense (something the Mayor has never even done). In addition, it was recommended that recalled Councilman "Machine Gun" Joe Winslow demand Mayor Foster's resignation yet again. Councilman Winslow said he didn't believe the Committee's recommendations went far enough.

Also, it was revealed that Pamela Walsma has been posting inquiries to the Municipal Attorneys  online help blog as to the possibility of sanctions and other actions against the Mayor which included withholding his stipend. Foster made public the responses to Walsma's internet inquiry from Attorney Mary Wade of Tempe, and Scottsdale City Attorney Bruce Washburn , advising her that the proposal of censure was illegal. Something Town Attorney Walsma had not bothered to disclose to the Council, according to Councilman Robert Kelley. All six members of the Council voted to approve the censure of Mayor Foster, who stated that he will be ignoring the illegal demands.

Allegedly, Walsma has posted numerous internet pleas for assistance in municipal law since being retained as Town legal council, and one wonders why the Town mismanager would increase the budget for her services from $35,000 to $100,000 annually, when it seems clear that Walsma is practicing far outside of her legal specialty (wills, trusts and estates). If Walsma doesn't approve of the Council's actions, is she just in it for the money? And why did the Town toss aside more qualified candidates like Glen Gimbut and Gerald Hunt anyway? (Walsma's expertise might be useful however,  if the Town was looking to engage in the eminent domain taking of property owned by residents unlucky enough to die without their affairs in order...)

Despite Mayor Foster pointing out to Police Chief Jeff Gilbert that he was in violation of A.R.S. 14-772 by engaging in politics while on the job and in uniform, Gilbert showed his blatant contempt for the law and insisted on opining on five, count 'em five separate occasions! Mayor Foster graciously told Chief Gilbert that "freedom of speech" was at work and indeed,  Foster seems intent on keeping his promise that he would allow anyone to speak their opinion of him during the meeting.

Resident Violet Kiss falsely alleged that the Mayor had specifically instructed vendor Jennifer Harris to "sue every person on the Council" at a meeting of the Citizens Coalition she attended in June. However, that meeting was recorded and the facts reveal that Harris had publicly notified the Town Council of her intent to do so at a Council meeting roughly a year earlier,  before she had ever met Mayor Foster.

"Point of order! Point of order" repeatedly cried Council and audience members who didn't want any opinion expressed but their own and the meeting was continually disrupted by.those who wanted to silence any criticism of the apparent conspiracy against Mayor Foster.Police Chief Gilbert demanded "we will have order" even though, if acting as "Sergeant at Arms" it is not his legal place to make that demand unless acting on the instruction of the meeting's Chairman (the Mayor).  Resident Ron Burch was even threatened with being thrown out of the meeting (at the direction of Councilman Winslow instructing Chief Gilbert) for trying to speak loud enough to be heard over the clamor. (He had asked that the entire discussion be tabled for review by the Attorney General ). Council members Bob Kelley, Jerry Lukkasson and Joe Winslow got up and stormed out, but were careful to keep a quorum of four members to avoid have the meeting adjourned prematurely. Mayor Foster rightly pointed out that Burch had the floor and should be allowed to speak his peace, and former Quartzsite Mayor Richard Oldham turned his video camera on Police Chief Jeff Gilbert and advised "I don't think you should Chief". Faced with the probability of yet another round of unflattering appearances on the internet, Gilbert backed down.

When Mayor Foster pointed out that under state law, the only recourse for any allegations of ethics breach was a recall, Councilman Jerry Lukkasson's wife Michelle cried out "November 25th!" (Silly woman! In her haste to pull recall papers on the Mayor, she doesn't even realize that Town Hall is not open on that day because of the holiday.)

Perhaps pandering to advertiser pressure, wanna be journalist Shanana "Rain" Golden-Bear stated that she was putting the next issue of her free campfire kindling to bed, and for now, would be scaling back her print coverage of Town politics...and then went on to post a lengthy internet dissertation with her biased spin on the meeting. You didn't really believe she could keep her anti Foster opinions to herself now, did you?

Foster allowed supports and critics alike to speak their mind and now (in my opinion) has ample prima facie evidence against his critics to seek possible criminal prosecution in addition to civil damages. Thousands of dollars have reportedly been raised by outraged citizens in the hope that Mayor Foster will use the donations to sue Taft, Gilbert, and the Councilpersons as individuals since Foster has vowed to not sue the Town for the actions of it's officials. The meeting was finally forced to conclude when Al Johnson announced that the timer for the air conditioning would be shutting the system down in five minutes. I'm just impressed it could keep pace with all the hot air as long as it did!

It should also be noted that earlier in the day, the Council held a work session to discuss vendor permits and requirements. Although no action is to be taken this season, Building Official Al Johnson wants the permits changed from the current annual renewal to a permit that would expire every 180 days. This would effectively align the vendor's "temporary structures"  with the current definition contained within the Town Building Code, and Johnson could then use the permit records to target long term vendors for citations. Mayor Foster took a stand for the vendors, stating that they might feel short changed, whether they intended to stay and create revenue or not. Police Chief Jeff Gilbert stated something to the effect that "we should not live our lives for the vendors".  The La Paz County Health Dept. was in attendance and proposed a plethora of new regulations for the food vendors. These proposals were not actually rejected and may possibly be put into effect for the following winter season...that is, if the currently recalled Council members are not removed from office and replaced with "vendor friendly" candidates. So vendors, make your presence felt this winter and attend the meetings!

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

One of original Navajo Code Talkers dies in Ariz.

The Associated Press
Allen Dale June, one of the 29 original Navajo Code Talkers who confounded the Japanese during World War II by transmitting messages in their native language, has died. He was 91.
June died of natural causes Wednesday night at a veterans hospital in Prescott, his wife, Virginia, told The Associated Press on Thursday.
His health had been failing since earlier this year when he was hospitalized for a urinary tract infection and kidney failure because he wasn't drinking enough water, his wife said. He was hospitalized again two months ago after visiting family on the Navajo Nation and was transferred from a Flagstaff hospital to Prescott, where he was under round-the-clock care.
The Code Talkers took part in every assault the Marines conducted in the Pacific from 1942 to 1945. They sent thousands of messages without error on Japanese troop movements, battlefield tactics and other communications critical to the war's ultimate outcome.
Several hundred Navajos served as Code Talkers during the war, but a group of 29 that included June developed the code based on their native language. Their role in the war wasn't declassified until 1968.
June, who attained the rank of sergeant, received the Congressional Gold Medal in 2001 along with other members of the original Code Talkers.
With his death, only two of the 29 are still living.
"The Navajo Nation lost a great warrior," Tribal Council Speaker Lawrence T. Morgan said in a statement. "His unique service to his country brought positive attention to the Navajo Nation. He will be missed."
June first tried to sign up for the Marines in his hometown of Kaibeto on the Navajo Nation, but a recruiter told him he was too young. He then traveled to the reservation town of Chinle to enlist _ because he figured people there wouldn't recognize him _ and he could lie about his age and forge his father's signature, Virginia June said.
Even after the code was declassified in 1968, June said little about his role as a Code Talker because he viewed it as bragging, his wife said. Anyone who saw him in the past several years might have been able to guess he was a Code Talker, as he wore a red Navajo Code Talker cap with his name on it wherever he went and a black leather jacket with "Marines" written across the back. He completed his look with a bolo tie that had a large turquoise stone.
Virginia June routinely handed out cards bearing Allen June's picture and rank in the Marines that he had autographed.
Besides his wife, Allen June is survived by 10 children. Funeral services were held yesterday in Page, with burial in Kaibeto.

Friday, September 10, 2010

If Gabrielle Giffords wasn't serious, this might be funny!

Another ugly example of what's wrong with Arizona incumbents! I can think of a lot of questions to ask General Petraeus, but alternative energy in a war zone isn't on my list! One thing is for certain, it looks like a knock down, drag out battle between Giffords and Jonathan Paton, her Republican opponent. They both come across as slimy mudslingers to me. Disclaimer: this was emailed to me from a friend who said:

Can this be actually true? Oh my! Tell me it ain't so!

"She aint the dumbest in congress but gaining in that direction. Maybe
she should ask her buddies in Phoenix what they are doing about the smog there. Thought I would pass this on...."

This woman could win any debate because after listening to her stupidity any opponent would be speechless.

Poster-child for
what is wrong in Washington , DC You will simply not believe this.
Our 8th District US Congressional representative, the Hon. Gabrielle
Giffords, in a meeting of the House Armed Services Committee, asked
General David Petraeus the following question: "General
Petraeus, what are you doing to reduce carbon emissions in the war
on terror?" Wow.. I had to read, and re-read this several times to
believe it. Folks, there are American sons and daughters dying every
week on the foreign battlefields of southwest Asia . The nation is
completely bankrupt and ... quite literally, borrowing 43 cents for
every dollar in federal spending. We have the largest environmental
disaster in the nation's history in the Gulf of Mexico , and we have
Mexican drug armies invading our nation. And yet .... A member of
Congress from Arizona 's 8th congressional district took the time to
ask our battlefield commander what he is doing to curb carbon
emissions in the war. Gabrielle Giffords is the poster-child for
what is wrong with the US Congress.. We are being led by imbeciles.
To the rest of America reading this blog, and to Gen. Petraeus if
this e-mail makes it to your inbox ... my sincerest apologies for
the stupid question asked of you by my US congressional
representative. General ... I am sure you have better things to
worry about than carbon emissions on the battlefield. I assure you,
as a registered voter in Arizona 's 8th congressional district, I
will do everything I can to ensure Rep. Giffords is voted out of
office in November, and I pray you'll get back to business of
fighting the war on terror without worrying about such petty and
nonsensical matters as your carbon footprint in the war.
Mark Beres, Maj. USAF (ret.) Tucson , Arizona FYI: The 8th
District surrounds Tucson to the north, south and east (Tucson is in the
7th District) and covers the south-east corner of AZ. What Google
says about Rep. Giffords: Representative Gabrielle Giffords (D-Az)
took Afghan Commander, General David Petraeus, to task for what she
characterized as "willful disregard of the environmental impact of
our war effort." "There is no policy, no plan to minimize carbon
emissions in our military activities," Giffords charged. "Bombs are
dropped and bullets are fired without considering the environmental
impact." Giffords insisted that she was "not demanding an immediate
halt to current military operations in the Middle East . I'm just
saying that battle plans should include an environmental impact
assessment as a regular part of the process before attacks are
launched." She also suggested that the Army "put more emphasis on
less environmentally damaging methods, like stabbing or clubbing
enemy forces in order to minimize the carbon output."
New Rules of Engagement: I think we ought to put her on the front
lines so she can stab or club the enemy. God help us if this is the
type of idiots that are elected to office. Walk softly and carry a
big knife or big stick to save the environment.

Saturday, September 4, 2010

Gov. Brewer defends private prisons despite recent escape by 3 murderers!

According to the AZ Republic "The escape of three inmates from an Arizona prison will bring sweeping changes to the privately run facility near Kingman and could alter the way the state's prison system handles dangerous criminals in years to come."

John McCluskey, Tracy Province and Daniel Renwick escaped July 31 with  help from Casslyn Welch. The Associated Press reported "Authorities say the accomplice to an Arizona fugitive was acting as a drug mule for white supremacists before she helped him escape from prison. Mohave County sheriff's spokeswoman Trish Carter said Friday that officials at the state prison in Kingman were randomly checking vehicles in the parking lot in June when they discovered marijuana and heroin in Casslyn Mae Welch's vehicle. Welch was visiting her fiance and cousin, John McCluskey, at the time. Welch wasn't immediately arrested while deputies investigated further. But she's now charged with six narcotics violations after being tied to the escape of McCluskey and two other inmates July 31. Authorities say Welch threw wire cutters over a prison fence to help the men get out."

Even the warden has resigned in disgrace. This is all too little, too late for the grieving friends and family of Gary and Linda Haas. McCluskey and Welch were sought in connection with the deaths of the Tecumseh, Oklahoma couple. Their bodies were discovered Aug. 4 in the charred remains of their RV near Santa Rosa, N.M. The dogs belonging to the couple were the only witnesses to the crime. They were found by investigators after spending two days in the desert.The Haas' truck was later found in Albuquerque.Yet our tax and spend Governor wants to shirk her duty to keep Arizonans safe by continuing to support private prisons!

"Gov. Jan Brewer has said that she remains confident in the ability of private prisons to house certain inmates but that only the "most serious" maximum-security offenders need to be held in public facilities."

Daniel Renwick was taken into custody after an early morning shoot out with police, ironically, in Rifle, Colorado.  Renwick had been serving a 22-year sentence for second-degree murder

Tracy Province was apprehended in Meeteetse, Wyoming after being identified mowing the lawn of a community church in exchange for $40 and a jacket. Province was serving a life sentence for murder and robbery

White supremacists McCluskey and Welch were captured in a campground in the Apache-Sitgreaves National Forest, only 300 miles from the prison after a three week manhunt that made them two of the most wanted fugitives in the nation.

When he escaped, McCluskey was serving a 15-year sentence for second-degree murder, aggravated assault and discharge of a firearm. "The state's method for determining which inmates are housed in minimum, medium and maximum levels was designed after the notorious 1978 escape from Florence of Gary Tison and Randy Greenawalt. Their escape led to a 13-day crime spree and eight deaths."

Does anyone still remember the family murdered near Quartzsite by the Tison gang?

Democrats appear to have have seized on the publicity by opposing private prisons with sudden enthusiasm. A savvy political maneuver, because Gov. Jan Brewer’s campaign chairman and policy adviser is also a lobbyist for the largest private prison company in the country. Perhaps it's because that same private prison company has the contact to incarcerate illegals rounded up by Brewer's SB1070? Caroline Isaacs from the American Friends Service Committee, which advocates for social justice issues, says "private prison companies have been buying influence in Arizona politics for years. The number of private prisons and jails operating across the state shows the result of that influence". See:"Brewer Linked To Private Prisons Housing Illegal Immigrants - New Questions Raised About Lobbyist Advice"
Democrats, just say no to Terry Goddard, who refused to investigate our corruption because of  "budget" concerns! Republicans, say no to Brewer and everyone please, vote for Barry Hess!

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Brewer chokes - Barry Hess wins "Clean Elections" debate!

As yesterday's soundbites and brain farts from the televised debate for the AZ Governor's office are replayed across the National evening news, one thing became clear, Republican Jan Brewer choked BIG TIME! A quick internet search for "Jan Brewer debate" results in an amusing array of descriptions; "cringe worthy", "meltdown", "train wreck", just to name a few.
In a surprising turn of events, morning talk radio was buzzing about Barry Hess!
 KFYI mp3 podcast
Not surprising to me, of course, as I've already perused his website;

Brewer was harshly criticized for immigration fear mongering at the expense of jobs and the sorry state of Arizona's economy.. "Brewer has failed to take decisive action to create jobs and should have lawmakers in special session right now to craft stimulative tax relief", Democrat Terry Goddard claimed. "This is an emergency." "The recession, not the immigration law, should be the focus of the campaign, stated Libertarian candidate Barry Hess  "It's not the issue when ... people are out of work."

OMG! Did Jan Brewer just say "there but for the grace of God I arrived"? Yup!