My View

DECEMBER 19, 2012

Connecticut tragedies • Local elections

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my viewThe devastating news about a young (likely mentally ill) man killing 26 people and himself in Connecticut will cause another round of attempts to further regulate firearms. Once again, if officials of the school had been trained and armed the body count would have been far less. The answer has been and always will be that voluntary training and available arms will reduce crime. Statistics have shown the more gun owners there are in a given location, the lower the crime rate will be. Australia for example had a liberal frenzy and gathered up arms so that only the criminals were armed and their crime rate has steadily increased. Criminals will always ignore laws and they will be armed.

The liberal press, TV and online sources ignore the many times a ready gun saved lives but wring their hands and argue for more gun control when murders happen.

I was surprised to read online statements from Rupert Murdoch arguing for more gun control despite the fact that few talking heads on his Fox News network would agree. Murdoch is an Australian and would only have to look at the negative results his country experienced by melting down guns and making gun ownership illegal. But no, he jumps on the first predictable liberal thoughts that assailed the media.

Texas has already preempted the insanity sweeping the country by deciding to arm their teachers and administrators. I hope Governor Jan Brewer adapts the Texas attitude and finds a way to pay for training in gun handling and safety for enough school employees to have a shield against the violence we have been shocked by in Connecticut. Gun-free zones are an invitation to the mentally ill and criminals.

The victims deserve our prayers and in their memories we should defend the defenseless.

Local Politics

It looks like the election battle lines are being drawn in Cave Creek and Carefree. Carefree has much less in expected change than the potential for Cave Creek.

In Carefree, the fact ex-councilman Bob Coady had pulled a packet for mayor seemed to indicate he would run against Mayor David Schwan, but he declined to run. Because Coady didn’t run, Jim Van Allen dropped out as a candidate for council, where he had served but resigned before completing his first term.

Both Cave Creek and Carefree will extend the council and mayor term of service from two years to three and one half years due to a change in the state law.

In Carefree Mayor David Schwan is unopposed. There are seven candidates for six seats. For council, incumbents are: John Crane, Mike Farrar, Glenn Miller, Melissa Price and Marty Saltzman. New candidates are: Michael Krahe and Les Peterson.

In Cave Creek Mayor Vincent Francia is unopposed. The entire six person council is running to retain their seat. They are: Shelly Anderson, Jim Bruce, Vice Mayor Ernie Bunch, Dick Esser, Steve LaMar and Thomas McGuire.

Opponents are: Mike Durkin, Reg Monachino, Steve Snider, Charles Spitzer, Adam Trenk and Eileen Ann Wright.

In Cave Creek a slate has developed, and long time readers of this column know what I think about slates. The last one I remember was when local attorney Bernard Buffenstein decided he wanted to take over the council and formed a slate to get majority voting power. It didn’t work, but he was voted in by the council as mayor and was subsequently recalled. That adventure formed the public opinion which resulted in a separate vote for mayor and a real town manager form of government.

When Enchanted Canyon was a local hot topic, east Cave Creek became aroused and a cadre of people came together and reputedly raised $40,000. A recent lawyer retiree claimed to have donated $20,000. The names of the people exaggerating the future of the resort project were familiar members of what is classified as the Dark Side of local politics. It appears these people, some of whom are running for council currently, were practicing the famous statement by Rahm Emanuel, that a crisis is an opportunity.

When the town canceled a planned meeting because the developers had withdrawn their application, the group was furious and demanded a meeting, which Mayor Vincent Francia arranged. Francia held the meeting and debunked many of the false assertions made by them. It appeared they were knitting together false rumors about Cahava Springs and the west side of town with the east side turmoil over the resort.

The upshot of the frenzied commotion was the group allegedly spent $15,000 of their $40,000 with a land use attorney from the Rose Law Firm. So now it is rumored a PAC is being formed and the remaining $25,000 will be used to fund it.

The fact the anger about the resort was more intense than the likelihood of it ever becoming a reality clearly indicated a larger vision – a political one.

We will begin to sort out the reasons for various candidates in our forums, which we are currently planning. In our next printed paper we will advise you of the upcoming forums for both towns. The primary elections will be held on March 12, 2013.