[Update: Site Administrator has moved it under "Guest Opinion"]
(Author’s note: This is NOT a press release, it’s a Guest Opinion, but I don’t have that log-in. This opinion was posted anonymously for a reason: some people can’t express their opinions without endangering their jobs.)
Let me be brutally frank. You’ve been dazzled by good-sounding ballot initiative titles quite regularly and, in the end, the initiatives never do what their liberal proponents have duped you into believing they’d do. Let me give you some examples to illustrate and prove the point. According to “Clean Elections”’ liberal proponents, the measure was supposed to “level the playing field,” which has been an illegal purpose according to American jurisprudence for quite some time, but in the end, it got more conservatives elected. The recent proposal to increase sales taxes by 18% was sold to you as a measure to protect education, health care and public safety funding. Did it? No! The Independent Redistricting Commission was supposed to give us more competitive races. Has it? No! We’ve got more uncontested races and races that will be decided in a primary than ever before! Term limits were supposed to force turnover in politics so those “evil politicians” couldn’t accumulate too much power. In reality, politicians stay in power despite term limits by playing a virtual musical chairs of elected positions. Ultimately, you,. The voter, are directly responsible for killing institutional knowledge and increasing the power of unelected legislative staff members. Great job!
Certainly you have heard the cliché, “Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me.” Frankly, voters, you’re WELL PAST the shame on you stage! You voted for all the above measures and NONE of them delivered on the promises the liberal proponents made to you! Similarly, this “Open Government” initiative sounds great at first blush, but its liberal proponents will not deliver on their promises. They will fail you this time like they’ve failed you every time before.
If you read between the lines of the arguments that the sponsors and proponents of the jungle primary make, it’s plain to see that they have an agenda: to drag the political football to the left. The sponsors and proponents of the initiative argue that a jungle primary will fill the legislature with fewer extremists and more moderates will be elected. No Republican has any business voting for this initiative. Democrats? Well, what Democrat doesn’t want fewer Republicans elected overall and a greater percentage of those Republican office holders to be moderate? Independents, if you want to continue to be dissatisfied with the parties, go ahead and vote for this initiative. Do you, voters, honestly believe that extremist Democrats like former State Senator Kyrsten Sinema or current State Senator Steve Gallardo will be ousted by moderate Democrats? Extremist Democrats won’t be ousted at all, but what the liberals are hoping is that conservative legislators will be picked off by liberal “Republicans” like Senators Rich Crandall, Adam Driggs, John Nelson, Nancy Barto; Speaker Andy Tobin; Representatives Heather Carter, Karen Fann, Bob Robson; and former-Rep. Bill Konopnicki, etc.
So, with extreme Democrats and liberal Republicans in power, you can see that the ultimate result will be that the state will take a hard left turn because liberal “Republicans” will betray the party’s principles and side with the Democrats when it matters most. Big government is already a problem considering our national debt and deficit spending, this initiative will only compound our problems by adding irresponsible state spending on top of outrageous federal spending.
Recently, we’ve witnessed ultra-liberal Arizona Republic columnist Laurie Roberts embark on a “Dekookify” the state campaign. Laurie has heralded this “Open Government” proposal in her column and has argued, like the sponsors of this measure, that it will remove the “kooks” from the legislature and install moderates in power. Let’s be perfectly clear: the ONLY people Ms. Roberts considers “kooks” are conservatives and she is the Left’s willing “useful idiot.” Ms. Roberts is so benighted that she doesn’t understand that without the “kooks” she’d have nothing to write about and she’d be out of a job. People want to hear about CONFLICT, it’s what gets them engaged and interested in politics. If she got what she claims she wants, moderate legislators all holding hands and singing Kum By Ya and constantly passing “non-controversial” legislation that steadily grows the government, no one would want to read the stories about everyone compromising. It’s one of the reasons why Rodney King’s admontion , “Can’t we all just get along?” is so laughable. Like it or not, humans LIVE for conflict. It’s the common and uniting theme in our history, our music, or novels, our plays, our news, etc. Laurie Roberts would put herself out of a job because even fewer people would buy the Republic, subscriptions would decline even further and there’d be no money to pay Ms. Roberts’ salary because no one wants to read non-stories with no conflict. Idiot. I am ASTOUNDED that she is actually PAID to put her opinions in print!!
Let me ask you, voters and Ms. Roberts, if the electorate is so dissatisfied with our elected officials, why do we have so many uncontested races? Why are so many contests being settled in the primary? Why isn’t EVERY race contested? Why aren’t ALL races settled in a general election? The fact that we have so few contested races reflects that people aren’t as unhappy as you, Ms. Roberts, and the sponsors of this initative (and even the proponents of the IRC initiative) like to intentionally mislead the public into believing. The lack of any real contests proves that you are a bald-faced liar, Ms. Roberts, and that goes for the sponsors of this initiative as well. Shane may have treated you with kid gloves on Sunday Square Off, Ms. Roberts, but I won’t because you’re threatening the state that I love dearly. I take my patriotism very seriously.
If the proponents of this “Open Government” initiative aim to get more Democrats elected and, of the Republicans elected, more moderates, think about what the impact would be on voter registration. It would energize the Democrats and they’d recover their flagging registration percentages while disenfranchised and discouraged conservatives would flee the Republican Party to re-register as Independents. This initiative is insidious and it’s a liberal’s wet dream come true. I cannot urge voters enough to reject this initiative.
I know you, voters, are also familiar with the cliché, “Sunshine is the best disinfectant.” As stated above, no one would pay attention to politics if we all elected a bunch of moderate, compromising legislators that had no guiding principles. Basically, you would lose any interest in politics and that, my friends, would breed corruption. Is corruption really what you want?
I know you’ve also heard the adage that, “There’s not a lick of difference between the Demopublicans and the Republicrats.” This measure would fuel that cynicism and continue to drive people away from the parties. In essence, it is a lack of adherence to a set of guiding principles that has driven voters from both parties. Former President Ronald Reagan likened strong adherence to principles to, “bold colors” and likened a lack of guiding principles to, “pale pastels.” He wanted stark contrasts between Republicans and Democrats. It is a LACK of differences between the parties that breeds cynicism, opacity. Bold colors have served BOTH parties very well. Democrats are energized by liberal politicians like President Obama and Republicans are energized by strong conservatives like Ronald Reagan. Democrats have been critical of both Clinton and Obama for not being liberal enough! Similarly, conservatives castigate moderate Republicans for not being conservative enough. To further illustrate the point, no one gets excited about moderate elected officials. No one cares about liberal RepublicanU.S. Sens. Lindsay Graham or Olympia Snowe or Susan Collins. So, if you vote for the “Open Government” initiative, you’re going to be voting to replace our current elected officials with boring officials that prove the old cliché about there being no difference between the parties and you’re going to be asleep at the wheel (or voter booth as the case may be…if you even bother to vote in the future). Is that really what you want?
As stated above, elected officials’ lack of adherence to a clearly defined set of guiding principles has driven liberals out of the Democratic Party and conservatives out of the Republican Party. Not only will this initiative promote opacity in government because it will breed apathy because of boring elected officials, but it will also breed opacity in that it will continue to drive voters from the parties and thereby make it much more difficult to identify and target voters for contact by those seeking office. It’s easy for Republicans to target Republicans in an election and easy for Democrats to target Democrats…but how does a campaign identify exactly what an “Independent” believes and get information to like-minded independent voters to turn them out to vote? If you vote for this, people are going to become increasingly dissatisfied with the parties and you will receive less information on the candidates. In other words, you’ll not only be voting for a lack of enthusiasm about politics if you vote for this initiative, but you’ll also be voting to make yourself more ignorant about candidates since you can’t be as easily targeted for contact. Apathy, ignorance, opacity. Sounds like just what we need!
One concept that you, voters, seem to fail to grasp on a regular basis is that we are guaranteed a republican form of government. The initiative process is a democratic form of government. We’ve been warned since Plato and even by our Founding Fathers that democracy is an inferior form of government to a republic. Your consistently poor votes on initiatives are proof of that fact. You’ve heard the cliché that, “elections have consequences.” That cliché is absolutely true. WAKE UP, people! Quit falling for soundbite arguments and do some critical thinking for once and REJECT this utterly stupid proposal! I know my arguments are counter-intuitive, they take some time and thought to understand, but I believe the points are valid because they’re supported by evidence. If you pass this initiative, you get what you deserve…and I’ll be observing the results and waiting in the wings to excoriate you again when I’m proven right.