The Road to Hell

I don't envy our elected representatives. The issues they have to deal with on the public's behalf often seem insurmountable. Regardless of the tough tasks facing them, they sometimes make thought-out, well-intended choices.

Then there are the choices that are about as dumb as lobotomized stumps.

For evidence of these latter choices, I refer you to two articles in this week's newspaper. First, check out "Head Games," this week's cover story, by local freelancer Joe Bavier. He writes about a well-intentioned law, passed by the Legislature last year, which has the potential to go horribly wrong. A law going into effect July 1 will make it so that psychiatric counselors have to be state-licensed to practice in Arizona; before, Arizona was one of the most lenient states in the country in terms of counselors' standards. This law is a good thing, right? Yes, except that a whole bunch of experienced, respected counselors are going to be up the figurative creek on July 1, because they won't get licensed by the state, which is showing some horrible judgment on who it is accepting and rejecting. Case in point: It rejected a UA faculty member on the grounds that he didn't meet academic standards, because he never took a class--the very class he is currently teaching.

Then read a piece by Jim Nintzel regarding a proposal to privatize trash-collection services in the city, in order to cut city costs. This is OK, except that the idea is being floated as a compromise to appease council members who refuse to institute a city trash-collection fee. Here's the thing: Does it make a difference whether a citizen is paying a fee to the city, or to a private company? NO, IT DOES NOT.

And I won't even go into the ineptitude of Councilman Fred Ronstadt's idea to eliminate city courts.

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