Gingrich Speaks

As Oscar the cat waits outside the political hospice room of Senator John McCain, Newt Gingrich has gone out on a limb with a prediction for the Dems. The only thing I disagree with in his assessment, is the order of the nominations.

Giffords is sweet.

     Gabrielle performed right on queue after the sugar industry invested in her. She voted for the farm bill, which raises price supports for the sugar lobby as well as wheat and soybeans. These artificial pricing schemes lead not only to higher prices for consumers but also to overproduction. The excess sugar will be sold at below market prices for a cost to taxpayers of $1.4 billion. No wonder Giffords is raising so much money for her next campaign. She performs very well for those able to buy tickets to the show.

“Compassion Mongers” let down AZ’s children.

     State Superior Court Judge Edward Burke has ordered the release of CPS case files relating to three Tucson area children, two of whom are deceased and one who is assumed deceased.

     The judge sided with the Arizona Daily Star, which sued for release of the reports, and State Representative Jonathan Paton, who has schedule hearings regarding the CPS penchant for keeping secret the files of children who die while their situations are under investigation by the agency. A story in Sunday’s Star reveals that hearings might be a very good idea at this time. Paton, quite correctly, plans “on asking CPS directly what it needs to do to improve.”

     State Representative Steve Farley was on the John C. Scott show whining about hiding the files from the public eye in order to protect the safety of children. Of course Scott (Mr. Wiffleball) did not ask the obvious follow-up question of how do you protect the safety and welfare of a dead child. Farley likes to point out that he is eminently qualified on matters relating to CPS because he went on a ride-along. (I will let the absurdity of that comment stand on its own.)

     Farley also moaned that any hearings regarding CPS should be held by Pete Hershberger and the Human Services Committee. Maybe house leadership decided that after SEVEN years in the legislature working on children’s issues a fresh perspective was called for. To say nothing of Hershberger’s obvious conflict of interest overseeing an agency to which he so closely linked. When you build your campaign around the message “I care about children” you invite people to measure the actual outcome of your performance. (I personally sat through a Republican LD-26 meeting a few years ago where Hershberger droned on about how proud he was of a bill he worked on that would fix the problems at CPS. The children in question died well after Hershberger’s “fix.”)

     Thank you to the legislators who believe that a life lost is worth investigating instead of quietly sweeping the CPS file under the rug.

Rio nowhere.

     A private foundation and free enterprise achieve what an act of the legislature and the city council fail to create. The Tucson Citizen has an article about the success in creating an “urban pedestrian experience for shopping, dining, and services.”

     Maybe Rio Nuevo could spend a fortune to have a fancy consultant study why Main Gate Square has been a success.

Settling in.

McCain consolidates his solid 4th place showing in Iowa.