Benny’s ‘Pants on Fire’ attack ad

Posted by AzBlueMeanie:

The Tucson City Council election ballots were mailed last Thursday, and timed to coincide with those ballots arriving in voters' mailboxes was an attack ad from Tea-Publican candidate Ben Buehler-Garcia that aired on cable channels in Tucson. (Video below the fold). The ad appears to be the exact same ad that Benny ran in 2009! Seriously, you are recycling four year old campaign ads?

Liar-LiarPer usual for Tea-Publican candidates, the attack ad includes distortions and "Pants on Fire" lies in 2013. Here is what the Arizona Daily Star said four years ago. Star takes closer look in race for seat in Ward 3 – Arizona Daily Star:

The image:

A camera pans over a construction site, while the screen flashes
"Over $150 million wasted."

The screen shows a police car with the words, "No funding for
basic equipment."

The screen cuts to images of closed businesses while the text
reads, "Forbes ranks Tucson worst for business."

Fact check:

• Define "wasted." Of the estimated $600 million in state sales
taxes the project is expected to receive by the time it expires in
2025, about $200 million has either been spent or committed. Since
the project was approved a decade ago with the promise of a host of
museums, a re-creation of Tucson's birthplace and a downtown hotel,
a healthy chunk of the money has been spent instead on plans and
consulting, in some cases for projects that never got off the
ground, like the scuttled Rainbow Bridge and the stalled UA Science
Center. Among the bricks-and-mortar projects: Money has been spent
on restoring the Fox Theatre, helping refurbish the Rialto Theatre,
re-creating a piece of the adobe Presidio Wall and developing
infrastructure for a new downtown subdivision.

Critics say that's not enough of a return on investment — a
sentiment that prompted the Legislature to pass reforms to strip
the city of its oversight.

• The term "basic equipment" might be open to interpretation. It
costs the department $3,052 to outfit a new officer. That pays for
five shirts, three trousers, two boots, a jacket, a tie, a
raincoat, a reflective vest, a whistle, a riot baton, one pair of
handcuffs, a helmet, a gas mask, pepper spray and a
fingerprint-identification kit. In addition, each is issued a
standard handgun. Officers generally have to buy their own
flashlights and flex batons, which are smaller and less unwieldy
than the longer riot versions. And although they get an equipment
allowance twice a year, and new recruits can take an advance on
future payments to assist in purchasing larger equipment, officers
often have to pay for some portion of their bulletproof vests. They
also aren't routinely assigned Tasers.

The Star's economic analysis from four years ago is obviously quite dated — as is Benny's "pants on fire" claims in this antiquated ad. In March 2013, Forbes Magazine named Tucson No. 3 Best City For Jobs This Spring (tie): Tucson, Ariz. And in September 2013, Forbes Magazine named Tucson No. 9 Best
City For Jobs This Fall (tie): Tucson, Ariz.

I know that GOPropagandists like to use the 1984 Doublespeak Dictionary (up is down, black is white) but most people understand that "Best" is the exact opposite of "Worst."

So what about this claim of "rampant" crime? The Merriam-Webster dictionary defines "rampant": adjectiveˈram-pənt — used to describe something that is very common or that is spreading very quickly and in a way that is difficult to control; growing quickly and in a way that is difficult to control.

Really? Here is what CityRating.com has to say about the City of Tucson's crime rate in 2013:

Tucson crime statistics report an overall downward trend in crime based
on data from 12 years
with violent crime decreasing and property crime
decreasing. Based on this trend, the crime rate in Tucson for 2013 is
expected to be lower than in 2010
.

Again with the GOPropagandists' 1984 Doublespeak Dictionary, this time "lower crime" means "rampant crime." There's even a handy-dandy graph from CityRating.com. (By the way, this claim was false in 2009 as well).

Screenshot from 2013-10-21 09:48:50

I want to add a word about this Rio Nuevo claim that the Star analysis failed to mention four years ago. Most of the "wasted money" in Rio Nuevo occurred between the time it was approved by voters in November 2009 and a new city council was elected in November 2005. Rio Nuevo – Final Report – Auditor General (.pdf).

During this period of time we had a Republican Mayor, Bob Walkup, and two Republican council members, Fred Rondstadt and Kathleen Dunbar. When Independent Carol West voted with the Republicans, the Republicans exercised a council majority. Councilwoman Karin Uhlich was not even elected to the Tucson City Council until November 2005. She bears no culpability for any decisions from 1999-2005. Benny would like you to forget who was actually on the city council and who was responsible.

The Republican controlled Arizona state legislature took over the Rio Nuevo District Board in 2006, appointing their Republican cronies to the Board. More waste, fraud and abuse occurred as the Rio Nuevo District Board engaged in audits and lawsuits, and fanned claims of criminal misconduct. You may recall Josh Brodesky: Rio Nuevo is troika's plaything:

Hard to imagine the public ever saying yes to Rio Nuevo in 1999 had they known it would become the shared toy of Jonathan Paton, Jodi Bain and John Munger.
The three are handling Rio Nuevo like kids handle Tonka trucks,
smashing it into anything and everything they can. I'll take that
sentence back if they grow up. Call it an olive branch.

* * *

But just look at the tangled web they've woven to save Rio Nuevo: a
threat of lawsuits against the city, demanding repairs in 30 days to the
Tucson Convention Center (or else!), and now the new vision for
downtown redevelopment that businessman Fletcher McCusker is peddling.

More recently, after the FBI investigation report was released to the public, finding no criminal misconduct, Tim Steller at the Arizona Daily Star reported, Like Rio Nuevo itself, probe produced a lot of nada:

The embarrassment in this case applies more to the instigators of it. Jette did not name former Rio Nuevo board chair Jodi Bain or existing board member Alberto Moore (or any other individuals) in the letter, but he sent these zingers their way:

Additionally,
very little information provided by the initial complaining members of
the Rio Nuevo Board proved to be either accurate or reliable
,” he wrote.
“Significantly, these same board members made public statements causing
intense media scrutiny which impeded the FBI’s ability to catch
material witnesses and potential suspects off guard with unannounced
interviews.”

Moore acknowledged that he and Bain brought
information to the Attorney General’s Office and FBI in 2010, the year
they were named as part of the newly constituted board running the Rio
Nuevo revitalization project.

So there was a whole cast of Republican characters involved in the Rio Nuevo "scandal." Councilwoman Karin Uhlich was not one of them.

There is no statement in this attack ad that was true in 2009, and is even more a "pants on fire" lie in 2013.

3 responses to “Benny’s ‘Pants on Fire’ attack ad

  1. Tucson’s crime rate is “high” because of larceny — primarily beer skips and other assorted shoplifting. Numbers don’t always tell the whole story.

  2. The ad did run on Cox cable while I was channel surfing football games this weekend. Occasionally Cox will cue up an ad that is not scheduled to run, so it could be Cox is the culprit. The Tucson Chamber of Commerce is running ads, even though local TV stations had said they are not accepting ads this year. I saw that ad run on KGUN 9.

    The Forbes reports are linked in the post, so . . .

  3. I guess we know Garcia is winning the election now that the last ditch lies have kicked in. Too bad nobody cares what nonsense is said here.

    Garcia isn’t doing any TV ads, neither are the other candidates. So you lie when you say Garcia has a TV ad. You say Forbes named Tucson as a best place for jobs. Another lie. Forbes never said that. Forbes simply did a story that cited some podunk organization saying Raytheon told them they plan to hire (since saying that, Raytheon has layed off hundreds) and since Tucson jobs pay so low, it should be easier to find a job here. And tea party? Has Garcia ever even been to a tea party event? And the list of lies goes on and on and on…