canfield cartoon

Carefree Mayor Schwan

Recently Carefree Mayor Schwan wrote a bizarre letter to Sonoran News claiming he opposes a property tax. However, after I filed anti-property tax initiative registration papers he had ample time to propose town ordinances with the same objectives. Instead while I was gathering almost 300 initiative signatures each for what are now Prop. 422 (two-thirds council vote to pass a property tax) and Prop. 423 (requires a public vote to enact a property tax or raise the rate) on three occasions he adamantly refused to sign my petitions. He must hope his supporters will defeat my propositions.
Anyone who believes his absurd claim he is against a property tax may also believe his claim that he cannot recall any content from his exposed private meeting on Sept. 22, 2010 with ex-Mayor Wayne Fulcher, ex-Vice Mayor Lloyd Meyer, ex-Councilman Greg Gardner, Vice Mayor Glenn Miller and Councilman Bob Gemmill at the Carefree Water Company (CWC) office. Wasn’t that meeting about how to push through a Carefree property tax? What other topic would need secrecy and top-level involvement?
Mayor Schwan, president of the CWC, authorized the firing of an older CWC worker on January 21, 2011. Just days earlier I attended the January 4 meeting of the CWC board of directors where there was no discussion about a need to cut costs or reduce employment. Did the mayor retaliate against the worker for speaking about the Sept. 22 meeting? Will the mayor’s action result in a potentially costly lawsuit against the town?

Jim Peirce | Carefree Council candidate


Martial metaphors mulled

Ever since his appearance at the Tucson political rally, The Anointed One has been calling for “civil discourse” – (translation: language censorship). I am about to march into a minefield, perhaps as the point man, as I scout the field of battle before I charge into it. The political situation is a veritable powder-keg, which needs to be defused. No, I am not trying to saber-rattle or to undermine any move toward civility, but rather I wish to spearhead a campaign to shield our precious language against the slings and arrows of outrageous fortune, and to take arms against a sea of troubles, and thus, by opposing, end them - à la Shakespeare.

The Anointed One and his minions, especially those in his Pretorian Guard, are trying to scuttle use of proper martial metaphors in our speech and writings, and have been able to decimate some of the foe’s combatants, but I feel we can outflank them and torpedo their plans. Yes, we resistors are already in the crosshairs of the Orwellian task force the O-bummer has recruited to snipe at the use of proper language and to fire broadsides at the prohibited use of martial metaphors. We must gird our loins, don our intellectual armor, and prepare to suffer political sniping and a barrage of obfuscation launched by the Minister of Truth and the Thought Police. They have already fired a round across the bow of the Ship of Free Speech, but entirely missed the target (pinpoint accuracy is not a virtue in suppressive fire, no matter how much the battery feels it has its crosshairs dead-on upon the foe’s barricades).

We must remain alert, and keep a sentry on duty to detect the tip of the spear of any phalanx launched to cross the moat and assail our Libertarian ramparts. The Thought Police may wish to club its way into our sense of collective guilt, but we will shoot down its plans, through legal loopholes, if necessary. Let us not quiver, but rather let us keep our powder dry until we are successful in triggering a counterattack against the forces of linguistic suppression.

“¿Pa’ trás,? ¡Coño, ni pa’ coger impulso!” (Fidel Castro: “Pull back? Hell: not even to gather momentum!”)

J-P. A. Maldonado | Phoenix


Cut this out!

We all know him by sight as the EVER-PRESENT Sheriff’s Posseman in Carefree.


But prior to his significant volunteer contribution of time to our community … 24,000 hours in the past 7 years, unprecedented in Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office Posse history … Jim Van Allen was a distinguished member of Corporate America, a Senior Executive in the hotel industry for over 35 years and one of the Founders of the Embassy Suites chain of Hotels.

His background in on-going Corporate Management and the development of new properties and the understanding of the significant financial implications will serve the town of Carefree well.

Importantly, Jim Van Allen knows Carefree … he knows every street and every corner and hundreds of residents and business owners.

Jim Van Allen is a volunteer and knows what “TO SERVE” really means … and was awarded in 7 consecutive years as the Posseman who donated the most hours to MCSO out of the entire Posse organization. And was awarded POSSEMAN OF THE YEAR IN 2005 out of a field of 3,000 POSSE MEMBERS.

Since this is a political race, politically Jim Van Allen is an Independent Conservative, with absolutely NO TIES to any group or lobby and is TOTALLY OPPOSED to ANY “back room politics” or any form of “deal making” said another way he will take all steps necessary to make transparent the business he will be involved with that affect the citizens of Carefree.
His mission will be to utilize his strength and ability to be a team builder, with significant focus on the key issues facing the town, particularly the budget.

We need Jim Van Allen on the council … for his business acumen, integrity and dedication.
You need to have his name handy when you vote. So cut out this editorial so you have his name in hand for the ballot. Write in Jim Van Allen … a very good man that will serve us very well.

A councilman that will protect our interests, as he has for the past 7 years.

Roger Grabske | Carefree


Cave Creek land preservation

Along with a $400 check for the preservation of Cave Creek land I wanted to write to Sonoran News to let them know why a resident of New York State believes Cave Creek land preservation is so important.

Every winter my wife Kay and I spend two weeks visiting my sister and brother-in-law, Nan and George Ross. A significant portion of our waking hours are spent hiking in the Cave Creek hills. We find the natural beauty unique and breathtaking.

Kay and I have been fortunate enough to have the pleasure of hiking in a number of unique areas around the world, and as a licensed Adirondack wilderness guide and Adirondack Park Commissioner I have spent a good deal of time in retirement both enjoying the wilderness and trying to protect it. Over the years we have learned some lessons in the Adirondacks, often the heard way, which may be applicable to the residents of Cave Creek.

The Adirondack Park which is the size of the state of Vermont is perhaps the most protected land in the world and the largest track of wilderness in the lower 48 states. It is greater than Yellowstone, Everglades, Glacier and Grand Canyon National Park combined. During the 1800s the Adirondacks weren’t the way we know them today. There were no conservation restrictions; they were cut over and trapped out. The fur trade was important and lumber was used for everything including fueling steamships, consequently there were few trees and even fewer animals. The streams ran brown with pollution from the paper mills and tanneries. It wasn’t just the Adirondacks but the entire Northeast. In Vermont there was no deer hunting season from 1865 to 1897 because there were no deer nor were there bears, coyotes or even beavers, for that matter.

Then the landmark Adirondack legislation was signed in 1894, the Adirondack Park established, the “forever wild” language added to the state constitution and everything gradually turned around. First the trees came back and then the animals. Old time Adirondackers will tell you stories of the first time they saw a bear sometime before WWII.
The moose came back in the 1980s. Maybe now even wolves are coming back and crossing over from Canada.

My point is the Adirondacks are not about land preservation but about redemption. The historical significance of the Adirondacks is that New Yorkers got a second chance and it took about a hundred years to bring the wilderness back. But Arizona residents aren’t going to have that luxury. Once the land is developed it will never be reversed. The beautiful, unique landscape that makes Cave Creek and Arizona so special will be lost for future generations. That is why Kay and I want to make the small contribution of $400 to help preserve this important place.

Bill Valentino | Delmar, New York


Lazy opportunism

The issue of imposing a property tax to pay for fire services raises a couple of questions. Firstly, why is it so important to bring up this issue now? None of my friends or neighbors are wringing their hands over it, so why now? Secondly, when in the history of Christendom has the interjection of government betwixt private company and the individual resulted in more efficiency or better service? For the customer I mean, not the politician.

Is now the time to impose a new tax? Aren't people taxed enough? We have seen how a mandate for health insurance has been received nationally. This is exactly the same situation. Fire Protection is readily available and is a personal responsibility, not a right!

The answer to all this is that it is a product of lazy opportunism with the pending expiration of the Spur Cross Bond Assessment. As a certain church lady used to say, "How convenient."

Is it wise, or indeed prudent, to sacrifice the integrity of past town council proclamations of a one-time tax for a laudable reason; to whit Spur Cross preservation, merely to bolster a for-profit private enterprise? An enterprise, I hasten to add, which by its own admission lacks the wherewithal to engage someone to promote their services. Such a business is doomed to fail. I'll give them a little hint. Tell people you remove snakes. Business will boom.

Also, is it a good idea to partner with a business which has at various times claimed 40 percent of the town as subscribers, whilst positing it may be 60 percent at others? A margin of error of a mere 50 percent. By the way, I say all of this as a Rural Metro subscriber. As a subscriber who would see his annual fire protection costs reduced by about 75 percent – so long as I force my neighbors to subscribe. I don't agree with it for health care, it would be hypocritical to support it now for my own financial gain.

As an aside, should you be foolish enough to attempt to monopolize garbage collection, again, these same arguments will apply.

In short we do not need to force fire protection on anyone. It is the thin end of the wedge at a time when the entire nation seeks less government, less taxes and less control. All in all, a remarkably tone-deaf proposal.

And on another subject …

The private sector is better equipped
Today, Friday, my wife and I were running errands and found ourselves at Home Depot. Sadly, we saw a badly injured javelina dragging its hind legs just outside the nursery section. It appeared both back legs were broken. Several people were milling around trying to help. The manager of Fry's supermarket was on the phone, and indicated he was on hold with "Fish and Game."

In the meantime, I asked my wife to call Dove Valley Animal Hospital to see if they could offer any help or suggestions.

The manager of Fry's got off the phone and related the information that he had been bounced around between "Fish and Game" and, I believe "Animal Control" to no avail, and both had fobbed him off and sent him away.

Dr. Mike from Dove Valley Animal Hospital showed up within minutes with an assistant. Noting that it was a months old injury, and that the animal was emaciated, he loaded it into his truck. He indicated it would likely be euthanized.

So, next time you are paying your taxes remember this. Your government loves to take your money: nay they insist upon it. However, when a job needs to be done you will usually find the private sector is better equipped to respond.

Seriously, what is the matter with the folks at "Fish and Game?" Disgraceful!

Gary Kiernan | Cave Creek


Use home mortgages to recover economy

Here’s some more thought to go with the way to use a home mortgage to recover the economic system in America. Why can't a home buyer have their payment on their home be considered a contribution to their IRA or 401K retirement account? Then in their retirement years they do a Reverse Mortgage and can access the money for their retirement and Medicare needs?

To build on this concept further, why not have the vehicle set up so all dollars contributed by the home owner be a true value accumulated into the home that is always a constant value regardless of real estate value fluctuations in market value? This way the base value of real estate would be always with a basic value so an economic collapse cannot happen as mood and risk in the mind of the Investors ebb and flow through the climates of economic trends.

Also to help recapitalize the real estate market with a Base Value and in conjunction with the New Banking requirements of one-third down qualifications for new home loans, we need to reset a base value under every home loan in America with a one-third value in the real-estate loan based off the current value of the Mortgage debt, and this will revalue the real estate market and Under Pin the Muni Bond market with some stability as well.

This would put a floor of value under pinning the overall markets and stabilize or at least have a better stabilizing effect on markets so Government bailouts are not as apt to be needed like we have seen in this current economic bubble. This would also allow for some better stability in the fixed asset classes as Interests rates would be effected by this as well.

Thanks for your time.

Tony Newbill | Wickenburg


Fix the Filibuster

It's time to end pretend filibusters, where one party threatens filibuster if the other party cannot guarantee 60 votes. Go back to senators who oppose a vote actually standing on the floor telling us why they believe a proposed bill should not be given open consideration and a vote. The proposal by Senator Tom Udall also would end the practice of one senator anonymously holding up a vote on nominations from judges to military promotions. The filibuster has its place, but only as practiced in real time on the senate floor, not in a behind-the-scenes bluff.

Judy Whitehouse | Phoenix