Brewer to Obama:

Warning signs are not enough...

Coming up as a laggard from the rear, Governor Jan Brewer has made the best of an opportunity after signing S1070 the Immigration Bill, using it to push her to the front of the pack in her bid to become the actual elected Governor of Arizona. With her political wits about her she's managed to make people forget, at least for now, that awful sales tax she managed to push the voters to pass.

She did get a meeting with Obama and it's understood she was very direct and clear and he didn't like it too much. Good. His response so far has been these warning signs.


The Governor has handled some criticism for her statement that most illegal immigrants smuggle drugs and are drug mules for Mexican organized crime. There actually is a lot of anecdotal evidence, although not necessarily by their choice, that most illegal immigrants crossing well known trails are hauling drugs as part of the price they pay to come here. The Mexican drug cartels demand it of them as well as payment.

The du jour counter charge regarding her statements is the usual "Racism." It's fair to say that the truth is the majority of illegal immigrants are caught up in the web of drug smuggling and all of the other types of crime that go with it. I'm sure many of them never intended nor do they want to live that way.

(Reference: Arizona Capitol Times "Brewer sticks by 'drug mule' remark)

Arizona has been assaulted for decades by the drug cartels, the equivalent of the Mafia in NY and NJ, the Mob in Vegas and the political machine of Chicago. Why should we have to put up with that anymore than those places do with their criminal gangsters?

The fight she is picking is looming much larger than immigration though. It really is about States' Rights and the power the States hold vs. the power the Federal government holds. It is one that needs to happen but on a number of fronts. The Federal Government has grown too powerful and this Congress and Administration have taken it to an extreme that is unconstitutional.

Here is the thing...

Immigration is an important issue to me but my main one has always been the economy. The entire nation, indeed the world, is in an economic contraction that very few people alive have seen and it's getting worse. Arizona, especially Phoenix, is one of the worst hit. The Valley of the Sun is a modern day ghost town...very little traffic in the streets and stores. The dramatic slowdown can't be attributed to winter visitors and illegal immigrants leaving. The real reasons are well known and they're economic.

The next big issue Arizona (and other states) are barreling head on into is insolvency and bankruptcy. The Federal Government can't (or shouldn't) help because the Federal debt level is too high and can't be justified by GDP. Yet, it appears that the Federal Government wants to do just exactly that and float more fiat money, thereby exerting even more control over the states.

Most Arizonans, of all stripes, have one thing in common, an intense dislike for the Federal Government due to the the federal role in creating the state and owning and mismanaging a vast portion of our land.

The trick will be...

Can Governor (by secession) Jan Brewer, as elected Governor, maintain the stamina she will need get the contentious state legislature and other elected major office holders to agree on anything? We are in the budget crisis we are in today, due to the childish bickering of petty partisan politicians in the state legislature, partly because as an unexpected governor she didn't grasp the reins quickly and firmly enough. Has she learned from the lesson?

Looking at how well she is doing in the polls right now and her opposition, as it stands, we probably will get to find out.



3 Reasons The FCC Shouldn't "Touch" The Internets...

The very last thing we need is an analog electromechanical bureaucracy, from the last century, thrusting itself unwanted on a new digital technology for this century.

1. Where's the fire?




Go to http://reason.tv for downloadable versions of all their videos
Written and Produced by Meredith Bragg and Nick Gillespie


Yuma Territorial State Prison

Country Club or Hell Hole?...

To say that Yuma is an arid climate would be an understatement, it is one of the hottest cities in the US. It does have redeeming features since, unlike Phoenix, it doesn't have the Urban Heat Island effect. Actually for most of the year, the weather in Yuma is about the same as Phoenix. Yuma has several advantages also, it's the confluence of the Colorado River and the Gila River with water still running in them, the deserts cool at night as well as it has has very mild, pleasant winters.

86°F | °C
Current: Clear
Wind: SW at 9 mph
Humidity: 14%
103°F | 71°F
103°F | 72°F
104°F | 73°F

Detailed forecast: The Weather Channel - Weather Underground - AccuWeather

All of that was moot to the residents of Yuma between 1876 and 1909 when the Yuma Territorial Prison was in operation. Originally built when Arizona was still a territory and county jails were inadequate to keep prisoners, the prison was built mainly for that purpose. Construction was done by the prisoners.

In that era electricity, much less fans and blowers, were not available to the population of the town of Yuma. Not so on the hill where the prison was into a hard rock cliff. The prison had electricity and primitive blowers, a library and hospital and townspeople referred to it as "The Country Club." The prison in reality was an awful place but depending on how hot the day, how deep it was into summer, the view of it depended on which side of The Wall you were on. Inside, prisoners referred to it as The Hell Hole.


Video produced by John Booth for AZStateParks.com


For What It's Worth

Red State, Brown People, Blue State Ideas...

"There's something happening here, what it is ain't exactly clear."

Arizona is on the leading edge of a national discussion on illegal immigration due to it's passage of legislation known as SB1070 or the Arizona Immigration Law. The original law was amended within a week after passage to specifically prohibit racial profiling and stipulate that the request to "show your papers" may only made in the course of enforcing any other law and not solely for the purpose of checking immigration status. This amendment is rarely cited when any mention of the law is made by the media or anyone speaking out against it.

The next step in the State of Arizona's process of attempting to stem the flow of illegal immigration through the porous border on the south, is to introduce into the legislature next year, proposals to deny birth certificates to children born in the state, of parents who are illegal immigrants. This idea is based on interpretation of the original US Constitution, various interpretations of the Fourteenth Amendment of the Constitution and the intention of Congress, as well as court rulings. It remains to be seen how that will play out between now and the next Arizona Legislative Session.

Another piece of legislation afoot is to charge students of illegal immigrants tuition for attending public schools. Therein lies another legal conundrum due to the US Supreme Court decision in Plyler v. Doe (457 U.S. 202, 1982) which ruled against a State of Texas statute withholding funds to school districts that allowed the children of illegal immigrants to attend their schools. Over the years this ruling has been cause for much debate regarding the overreaching of the Supreme Court in interpreting the Fourteenth Amendment.

Regardless of what view anyone holds on any of these issues and what opinion someone may have of the motivations of the legislator instrumental in spearheading these pieces of legislation or supporters of them, one thing remains plain, simple and clear. You don't need to go very far back in history to see it either.

All of this is leading up to a confrontation between the State of Arizona (and probably other states who are following suit) and the Federal Government. The last confrontation of significance between states over States Rights and the Federal Government was over school desegregation by primarily Southern States and occurred over decades from the 1940s to the 1970s.

There are other factors involved this time around. We are likely beginning to fully enter an economic depression of a magnitude not seen since the 1930s. Additionally, after thirty years of Affirmative Action there is a resentment, rightly or wrongly, that is seething under the surface. In unfortunate concert we have the first black President of the United States, who seems to operate on the level of a Middle Manager at an ineffective Non-governmental organization  (NGO), with his priorities out of order. We also have a Political Class in legislatures and executive branches and Bureaucratic Civil Servants, on all levels of government, who clearly are so entrenched they do not see the people they were originally intended to serve. And then there's that Oil Spill...

The General Population is not happy generally. Make of that what you will. Let me be clear, I am only stating what I observe after careful watching, doing my best to keep an open mind and giving every opportunity to all sides to prove me wrong.

I can only see one result from everything that is building to a crescendo:

Civil Unrest

This video was taken on the Friday of Memorial Day weekend at Alto Arizona, an anti-SB1070 protest. The following day a pro-SB1070 rally was held. I view both events as the last opportunity I will spend time on for several reasons. Mainly I'm not sure what good comes from my attending any of them and I have a sneaking suspicion that any subsequent demonstrations will rival the civil disturbances and riots of the 1960s and 1970s and I experienced some of those.

This video is my own personal social commentary of what I saw at one event.


Red State, Brown People, Blue State Ideas... from JR Snyder Jr on Vimeo.