Monday, October 24, 2016

There's a New I.E. in the TUSD Board Race

Posted By on Mon, Oct 24, 2016 at 1:00 PM

  • Courtesy of PhotoSpin
The new signs on the roadways say "Stop Stegeman Now." They just showed up recently, and you'll only find a few of them scattered among the yellow "Change the Board" signs, which, based on my recent drive through town, make up about half the signage out there—not half the TUSD board race signs, half the signs, period.

The anti-Stegeman signs are paid for by a new independent expenditure committee, Protect Our Schools TUSD, which filed its papers with Pima County last week. We don't know anything about its finances since it didn't exist during the last reporting period, but if the amount of signage it's put up is any indication, it doesn't have anything like the $35,000 amassed by TUSD Kids First, which is responsible for the yellow signs blanketing the city. We'll get a better idea of its funding by the number of signs that go up before the election and by its sponsored presence on social media.

Protect Our Schools TUSD has two goals: to get rid of Mark Stegeman and to reelect Kristel Foster and Cam Juarez. The group's website explains the reasons for its choices in bold letters on the home page, but for some reason, it hides its "Want to learn more?" link way down at the bottom of the page rather than creating the usual navigation bar near the top.

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Stella Needs a Home

Posted By on Mon, Oct 24, 2016 at 12:00 PM


Hi, I'm Stella!

I'm a beautiful 5-year-old girl and I need a new home! I was transferred to the Humane Society of Southern Arizona from a different shelter so they don't know a lot about my past, but they do know that I love being pet and I know how to sit for treats.

I would make the perfect dog for a family that is looking for a medium energy pet that loves to snuggle! If you have current dogs or kiddos bring them over to HSSA Main Campus at 3450 N. Kelvin Blvd. to do a doggy meet and greet!

Lots of love,
Stella (833538)

World View Case Update

Posted By on Mon, Oct 24, 2016 at 11:00 AM

Document fragment from Judge Wood's Gift Clause ruling - JONATHAN HOFFMAN
  • Jonathan Hoffman
  • Document fragment from Judge Wood's Gift Clause ruling

As you may recall, on Aug. 22, Judge Catherine Woods heard oral arguments regarding Pima County’s motion to dismiss the suit filed against Pima County by the Goldwater Institute on behalf of a number of Pima County business owners and tax payers regarding the deal with World View Enterprises. After reading the briefs and hearing the arguments, Judge Woods denied three of the four counts from the bench, the remaining count was taken under advisement. The count under advisement was in regards to Article IX, Section 7 of the Arizona Constitution, commonly known as the “Gift Clause.” On Oct. 14, Woods issued a ruling denying  the Gift Clause count. The Goldwater Institute gave the specifics in a press release:

...finding that we have successfully explained our position that the County “'unquestionably abused’ its discretion in spending taxpayer money and lending its credit when, among other things, it took on $15 million in new debt, commenced the construction of the headquarters and balloon pad to be used by a private for-profit corporation that had an unproven ability to conduct its intended operations, failed to obtain competitive bids, committed to lease the premises to the private for-profit corporation at below market rates, and granted to that corporation the right to operate, maintain, and control access to the pad (which would include keeping any profits it makes from allowing other third parties to use the pad).

But wait, there’s more! In the same press release, the Goldwater Institute announced:

... today we are asking the court to cancel the World View lease and force the County to comply with a state law that requires an appraisal, public auction, and a minimum price when the County leases property. When we were in court for the hearing on whether or not the case would be dismissed, the County admitted that it ignored this law, and Judge Woods has already ruled that the law applied. The County will have 30 days to respond to our request for the lease to be cancelled. 

Pima County has had much more luck demonizing the Goldwater Institute than it has had defending the World View deal. It has had some success in portraying the Goldwater Institute as a bunch of contemptible Maricopans who, when they are not pulling wings off of flies, entertain themselves by poking sticks at Pima County. It should be remembered that the Goldwater Institute cares not one whit if Pima County does, or does not, build a launch pad or manufacturing facility. What it cares about is the flouting of laws that are specifically designed to protect the taxpayers and businesses of Arizona. That is what Pima County has done by arranging contract deals in secret (Project Curvature), offering sweetheart financing deals that do not exist in the natural world, and dispensing with the legally required appraisals, competitive bidding, etc. Remember, too, that the Goldwater Institute is not representing itself; rather, it is representing the plaintiffs, also known as your neighbors.

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Cinema Clips: In a Valley of Violence

Posted By on Mon, Oct 24, 2016 at 10:00 AM

Horror fans know director Ti West for his cult classic horror film House of the Devil, and the horror films V/H/S, The Innkeepers and The Sacrament. His latest, starring Ethan Hawke and John Travolta, is a major departure from his usual projects, a capable, full-on homage to Sergio Leone westerns.

Hawke plays Paul, a drifter who finds himself in a frontier ghost town with a few remaining inhabitants. He and his dog immediately get into some trouble with Gilly (James Ransome), the son of the town marshal (Travolta).

Bad things transpire (this is sort of John Wick set in the old wild west), and Paul sets out for revenge. The resultant gunfights are nicely staged, accentuated by good work from Hawke, Travolta and Ransome.

While Hawke is always reliable these days, Travolta’s film career has been on a bit of downslide (one of a few his career has endured). His performance here as a semi-crooked lawman with a small streak of decency is actually funny at times, and consists of his best work in a film in over five years (It must be noted that he was also quite good as Robert Shapiro in The People v. O.J. Simpson: American Crime Story).

The film’s biggest surprise would be Taissa Farmiga, providing solid comic relief as a fast talking hotel operator. West does admirable work on the western playground.

The movie doesn’t feel all that original or groundbreaking, but it does look good, has some solid acting, mixing in some nice dark humor for an overall good time.

Be a Voter! (Then Vote)

Posted By on Mon, Oct 24, 2016 at 9:00 AM

  • Photo Illustration

One of the things I read as a young teacher which stuck with me was, be careful of your use of the verb "to be" when reprimanding a student. If a student lied to you, don't say, "You are a liar." Say something more like, "You told a lie." If a student cheated, don't say, "You are a cheater." Say something more like, "You cheated on that last test." If a student regularly disrupts class, don't say, "You are nothing but a troublemaker." Say, "I won't let you continue to disrupt class," or, "If you keep causing trouble in here, I will . . ."

The reason is, the statement "You are . . ." is very powerful. It is a statement of being, referring to your essential nature (I just checked to see where the word "essential" comes from. It's from the Latin "esse," "to be.") So if I say to a student, "You are a liar," I'm saying that lying is an essential part who that student is. If, on the other hand, I call a statement a lie, I'm dealing with one specific statement at one moment in that student's life, which means the student has the opportunity to stop lying by making a change in behavior, which is far easier than changing his or her essential nature.

It's probable that the other side of the "to be" coin is true as well: if you can get someone to identify with a positive trait by saying, "I am a . . .," you can increase the chance of that person acting on it.

I read a short piece recently that said people are more likely to vote if they consider themselves "voters," as in, "I am a voter," than if they say, "I vote." It cited a study indicating that people who accept the label of "voter" are more likely to cast their ballots than people who simply say they vote. It makes sense to me. If you think of yourself as a "bowler"—"Yeah, I'm a bowler"—you're more likely to hit the lanes than if you say, "Yeah, I bowl now and then." Bowling is part of something you are, not just something you choose to do when the mood strikes, when you have some spare time.

Bowlers bowl. Voters vote.

So I say, let's all be voters, people who act on that essential part of our being whenever the opportunity arises, which happens to be between now and Nov. 8—or a few days earlier if you mail in your ballot.

Continue reading »

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Saturday, October 22, 2016

American Babylon: Former GOP Chairman Michael Steele at the Third Presidential Debate

Posted By on Sat, Oct 22, 2016 at 9:00 AM

American Babylon caught up with former GOP Chairman Michael Steele, who says he doesn't rule out the possibility that he will be Michelle Obama's campaign manager in 2024.

Friday, October 21, 2016

Song of the Day: 'Cosmic Love Song No. 23' by Louise Le Hir

Posted By on Fri, Oct 21, 2016 at 11:16 PM

"... like some lost Byrds track when Gene Clark was burning up songs like cigarettes."
  • "... like some lost Byrds track when Gene Clark was burning up songs like cigarettes."
Louise Le Hir is one of those people you meet and you’re not for sure where it is she’s going but you’re damn sure she’s gonna get there. She called early one fall morning two years ago, asked if I’d like to go with her to a studio where she was making her first record, meet the owner and take in some music, see the setup. I was drinking my first cup of coffee when she pulled up in a small car that wouldn’t shift into first or second gear, making a short drive more dangerous than usual. But there’s little that’s usual about Louise. She’d been in Tucson seven years, give or take, playing, singing, drinking men under the table, and doing her music slow and patient. She stands out, a natural with long wispy brown hair, a low pitch in her speaking voice, a hint of the Midwest twisting through a throaty laugh, long legs that carried a complex life full of people and places where you don’t go but rather end up, just the same.

Amongst chords, equipment and a drum kit, I met Matt Rendon, the young, motivated music lover who had made a sort of umbrella of different bands, his bands, mainly The Resonars, and projects all out of Rendon’s midtown studio. A large amount of his work comes out on super-buzzed Burger Records in California. He seems inspired by singles, A and B sides that once stood for creative achievement in three minutes, that blew out of the radio like a precious sledge hammer. He also relates to ’60s pop, but he ain’t stuck in a decade long gone; nah, he just has earnest love affair with music. He is unpretentious and warm. He’s recording music that he feels makes a difference.

So I took a chair in a corner of the room and asked if I could hear a finished tune from the month they’d been working slow but steady. Matt gave me headphones and Louise asked him to que “Cosmic Love Song No. 23” for me. The snare drum rolls into an uptempo groove, Lana Rebel holds up the bottom on bass guitar. It is full on. Louise chipping away at her Les Paul Jr. as she begins a narration of a lover’s ups and downs, free of metaphor or apology. Harmonies come strong and large behind her words, an amalgamation of Billy Sherrill’s production sound adjoining some sharp lost Byrds track when Gene Clark was burning up songs like cigarettes. The first verse ends and the chorus busts wide open, pedal steel solo fresh, free of indulgence, just lonesome hearts splashed against Jackson Pollock’s canvas. Connor "Catfish" Gallaher’s solo rings to the heavens and the next verse is moving as we try to stay with it. Louise belts out grace without pretense and we hit that chorus one more time: And I only fall in love to feel the pain/Ain’t no ordinary thing I can explain/I need life to keep on livin’/I love you for your misgivin’s/And I only fall in love to feel the pain. It’s like one beautiful paper cut you bear for its magic and then the song slows and a single chord rings.

This is a haunting, gorgeous song, comes in under four minutes, and later this month a
video of this pearl will be out for all to watch, once and then again and again.

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Will Hispanics Help Elect Hillary in Arizona? 'Nah,' Said Jan Brewer, 'They don’t get out and vote.’

Posted By on Fri, Oct 21, 2016 at 3:12 PM

  • Courtesy of
Here's something to add to "Taco trucks on every corner" and "Nasty Women" on social media. "Jan Brewer says, Hispanics don't get out and vote."

Everybody's writing about Arizona right now, with Hillary looking like she's edging past Donald in the polls. If Hillary takes Arizona, that means a lot more than a few electoral votes. It could mean a purpling, maybe even a bluing, of the state. And one big reason would be an assertion by a growing number of Hispanics of their power at the ballot box.

Former Governor Jan Brewer says she's not worried.
Some Republicans dismissed the notion that Democratic-leaning Hispanics will become a significant enough force to tip the balance to Clinton.

“Nah,” former Arizona governor Jan Brewer said in an interview. “They don’t get out and vote.’’

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Staff Pick

CATArt! Auction benefiting PAWSitively Cats No-Kill Shelter

CATArt! Silent Auction; fabulous food and beverages; lovely courtyard. 10% of purchases donated to the cats. Beading… More

@ La Cocina Restaurant, Cantina and Coffee Bar Tue., Oct. 25, 5-9 p.m. 201 N. Court Ave.

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Popular Content

  1. Will Hispanics Help Elect Hillary in Arizona? 'Nah,' Said Jan Brewer, 'They don’t get out and vote.’ (The Range: The Tucson Weekly's Daily Dispatch)
  2. There's a New I.E. in the TUSD Board Race (The Range: The Tucson Weekly's Daily Dispatch)
  3. Stella Needs a Home (The Range: The Tucson Weekly's Daily Dispatch)
  4. World View Case Update (The Range: The Tucson Weekly's Daily Dispatch)
  5. American Babylon: Former GOP Chairman Michael Steele at the Third Presidential Debate (The Range: The Tucson Weekly's Daily Dispatch)

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