Category Archives: environment

Democrat Arizona Mine Inspector Candidate Bill Pierce wants to protect the states citizens from mining contamination in our soil and water supply.

 

Democratic Candidate for Arizona Mining Inspector Bill Pierce

In the very nicely air-conditioned offices of Legislative District Office 18 in Tempe, Arizona Mine Inspector Candidate Bill Pierce urgently conveyed that the Mine Inspector’s Office is in immediate need of greater oversight funding and staff so abandoned mines can be found and secured, current operating mines could be adequately inspected and monitored, and environmental contamination to our ground and water supply could be halted before potentially adversely affecting the lives of all the people dependent on sources like the Colorado River.

Continue reading

Donkey Feed, August 8, 2018

By Michael Bryan

Welcome back to the Donkey Feed. Those who feel I’m too verbose will be glad to see I have just 7 Arizona stories, 8 national stories, and 5 world stories for you to enjoy today.

But first, I found some cool tools this episode: Native-Land.ca has fantastic interactive maps of the native peoples, territories, and languages of the native peoples of North America and Australia, which I found fascinating and informative; Also interesting is this illuminating (and infuriating) comparison of income inequality in the United States vs. western Europe (this is not “natural” market forces at work, these charts are the result of political choices we have made):

We are still in a fundraising push, so please consider a small donation (or a gigantic one if you are in the 1%…) if you like what we do here at BlogForArizona:





Support volunteer citizen journalism at the Blog for Arizona with a donation today. Your PayPal contribution keeps the Blog online and sustains a free press in Arizona.


Click on “Continue Reading” for the full Donkey Feed…

Continue reading

Democratic Senate Candidate Elizabeth Brown Will Fully Fund Education

Democratic LD 12 Senate Candidate Elizabeth Brown

Over beverages at the IHOP at Sossaman and Baseline in Gilbert, Clean Elections Legislative District 12 Senate Candidate Elizabeth Brown conveyed the reasons she is making a second run for the State Senate after losing to Warren Pedersen in 2016. Ms. Brown is an experienced public servant whose campaign message centers on four themes. These are:

  • Promoting public education.
  • Protecting our environment.
  • Modernizing and expanding our local and state Infrastructure.
  • Guaranteeing ethics and equality for all.

Arizona LD 12 (see map) includes parts or all of Gilbert, Queen Creek, and San Tan Valley. This has normally been a reliable Republican district that has attracted minimal Democratic opposition in the past. In 2012, Republican Andy Biggs ran unopposed for this Senate seat. Ms. Brown did lose to Mr. Pedersen in 2016. However, Democratic enthusiasm has surged since 2016. There are three able and energized Democrats vying for the two State House seats and Ms. Brown seeks to ride that momentum to a Senate victory this November. A progressive, she feels that “if people would just take the “D” and “R” away and people see what I stand for, the people would see a lot of common ground with my positions.”

Who is Elizabeth Brown?

A former drama teacher, Ms. Brown, a wife, and mother of two daughters is an experienced public servant whose experiences start in 2004 when she volunteered for the Kerry and Edwards campaign. From 2004 to 2008 she worked for the Maricopa County Democratic Party as an office manager and executive assistant whose main responsibility was to recruit volunteers and assist legislative district chairs. She worked in Governor Napolitano’s and Governor Brewer’s office in the Constituent Services Department, observing how policies were formulated. Afterward, she was an assistant to former State Senator Barb McGuire and saw how bills were written. She also saw Republican heavy-handedness in burying Democratic bills and, later, constitutional amendments like the Equal Rights Amendment.

She believes that a lot of our legislators are in office for “personal gain” and “are out of touch with reality with what is happening with people. They are living in a bubble and do not treat people with dignity and compassion.” This is especially problematic because it is in the local sphere of the city, school and utility boards, and state level where most decisions affecting lives are made.

She believes that for too long, only men have represented the Legislative District and she feels that it is “time for more diverse representation.” She is running for the State Senate because she “believes our state is at a crucial crossroads and we can choose to continue the status quo of corporate handouts or we can reclaim our state government for all Arizona’s.” She pledges to be a “true public servant who will not look the other way when I see corruption or anything that seems unethical.” She wants to be the voice of the people and their concerns as their advocate at the capital, relying on “community engagement while seeking real and practical solutions for all Arizonans that create the policy that will ensure the wellbeing for all.”

Continue reading

Call the Republicans what they are on fiscal responsibility: phonies

Former Presidents Bill Clinton and Barrack Obama, the only two Presidents in the last 40 years to preside over falling budget deficits while growing the American Economy. Clinton left this country with a budget surplus.

When Ronald Reagan raised the national debt from one trillion which took 200 years to accrue to over four in eight years, where was the Republican outrage on deficits?

When first-term popular vote loser George W. Bush took an inherited surplus and blew it on two unpaid tax cuts, an unpaid war in Iraq and a partially unpaid Medicare Prescription Drug Benefit, where was the Republican outrage on deficits?

When the current popular vote loser President and his allies passed a major tax cut without paying for it, where was the Republican outrage on deficits?

Over the last 30 years, there have been two general reactions by Republicans when Presidents try to prudently manage the economy.

The first reaction on deficits is when they ridicule Presidents like George H.W. Bush, Bill Clinton, and Barrack Obama when they pass tax increases on the rich to bring deficits down, saying it is the wrong strategy to combat the national debt because it will bring down the economy. Here is a quick history lesson. Economic expansion occurred after Bush, Clinton, and Obama tax increases (the Reagan ones too but Republicans seem to have a memory lapse when it comes to that inconvenient truth.)

Continue reading

Democratic Candidate Profiles to consider when voting this month

Dear reader,

Below are the links to the profiles of Democratic Candidates interviewed up until July 30, 2018. Future profiles will be added for study. Please use this valuable resource to help make the best-informed choice when you vote in August either via a mail-in ballot or in person on August 28, 2018. Above all, please do not forget to vote. There are many exceptional Democratic candidates to consider so please take the time to vote for the ones that you feel will best move your local community and the state forward.

Federal elections

Statewide elections

Continue reading

Some Preliminary Thoughts on Conscience and Biophilia

By Michael Bryan

Humans arguably have a genetically determined capacity to empathize to some degree, to consider themselves from the viewpoint of another, and to imaginatively place themselves in the viewpoint of another. Together with our prosocial nature, these capacities are called conscience and underpin ethics, much of religion’s moral precepts, politics, law, and human social life.

While we have a psychological basis in the brain for such feelings and intuitions, our culture develops, refines and conditions our actual ethical/moral behavior by building upon that biological bedrock. For instance, the circle of a human’s ethical concern might naturally be constrained to those just like them, i.e. their own tribe, with outsiders falling into a category of “other” not requiring or eliciting the same level, or any, ethical obligations.

Some have theorized that the cultural phenomenon of religion has hijacked, or built upon our natural capacity for conscience to widen the circle of ethical concern to co-religionists, and even to the universe of all humans. Thus does culture reinforce, reify and widen the reach of our natural capacity for conscience, and turns it into the basis for ethics, religion, morality, philosophy, politics, law and hence into large-scale cooperative behavior. In recognizing that a fallow, culturally-undeveloped conscience is limited in its application to the complex social constructs and questions of a modern society, we might consider the innate capacity for love of the natural world that E.O. Wilson has termed “biophilia”.

Continue reading