bil canfield cartoon

Prop. 422 and 423

Prop. 422 and 423 “pro” arguments set to appear in the publicity pamphlet for the Carefree March 2011 primary election have been filed with the town clerk.

Prop. 422 argument:
Prop. 422 stipulates 2/3 (five votes) of the Carefree council rather than four votes (of seven) are needed to present any town property tax proposal to voters.
Prop. 422 is identical in intent to a successful 1992 statewide initiative that established a 2/3 vote requirement of the Arizona legislature to pass a tax increase.

Vote “YES” on Prop. 422 as an important safeguard against a property tax!

Prop. 423 argument:
Whenever Carefree council proposes a new property tax or an increase in an existing property tax, Prop. 423 requires a favorable public vote to approve the tax. Without a public vote the council imposed a 3 percent sales tax and issued 7 percent 20-year bonds for the water company.
Neither the Arizona Constitution nor any state law offers any protection from Carefree council establishing a secondary (full cash) values property tax. The secondary property tax would very likely be tied to a bond that could be sold just as council did with the water bonds.  

Prop. 423 establishes an essential legal protection. Vote “YES” on Prop. 423 as a critically important safeguard against a property tax!

Jim Peirce | Carefree

Afghans for the Taliban?

This poll, if accurate, is truly damning – not only of U.S. policy in Afghanistan, but also of Afghans’ ideas,” writes Elan Journo, a fellow with the Ayn Rand Center. “Last year, some 8 percent of Afghans said that insurgent attacks on U.S./Nato forces can be justified. This year, 27 percent of Afghans polled said the attacks can be justified.

“What makes this three-fold increase so astounding is that it comes after continual ratcheting up of restrictions on when U.S. troops in Afghanistan are permitted to use deadly force. Our soldiers are far, far more limited in when they can call in air support, for example, than just a couple of years ago (when their hands were still fairly tied). Yet for years, the premise of our strategy has been that, the more we tiptoe, appease the locals, and pull our punches, the more likely we are to win the love of the population. But in fact, pursuing this self-crippled policy (as I note in my book) leads our enemies and their sympathizers to feel contempt, if not greater enmity, for us.

“Notice, moreover, that there’s been 31 percent increase in civilian deaths in the first six months of the year – ‘largely caused by Taliban attacks, according to the United Nations’ (casualties attributed to Western forces have declined). And yet, 73 percent favor a ‘negotiated settlement’ with the totalitarian Taliban/Islamist groups.

“What does that say about the ideological sympathies of Afghans? What does it say about the assumptions behind U.S. policy in the region?”

Elan Journo | Ayn Rand Institute


Dear Senator Kyl

America is in crisis and only bold leadership will ensure our grandchildren the blessings of living in the America you and I grew up in.

I know you agree with this, but are you willing to show the required leadership?

Congress must immediately take a 15 percent cut in staff, cut in pay, and cut in retirement benefits for all past, present and future Congress persons and staff.  Additionally, Congress must agree to live under the laws they enact for "The People." There must be no special retirement plans, medical plans, or any other unique-to-Congress benefits.  It is a privilege to be a member of Congress and not some special right with special and unique benefits for Congressional members and their families.

Only after you enact these cuts will Congress have the moral authority to demand the same level of cuts from every Department of Government except the Military. The Military must be kept strong as they are truly the only branch of the Federal Government for which we have no alternative.

We only have a short time to turn our country around – do the Republicans have the guts to lead?  A Nation is watching!

Mike Doyle | Cave Creek


Cave Creek teachers

The Cave Creek School district received $974,886 from the $10 billion federal education-jobs bill, and it’s working out to about $2900 per teacher. That's less than the $3000 they lost over the last few years. The money will be paid in two payments and I bet they tax the payments. That’s funny – taxing tax money. And for the teachers to get this money they must submit paperwork proving that they have met goals they set for student achievement. Oh, please!

Stephen Takesian | Tatum Ranch


May we all strive to keep Christ in Christmas!

In 1223, St. Francis of Assisi simply and joyfully commemorated the scene of the Nativity according to the infancy Gospel, and the Crib thus became one of the traditional and best-loved symbols of Christmas.

In the crib we contemplate the One who stripped himself of divine glory in order to become poor, driven by love for mankind.

Beside the crib the Christmas tree, with its twinkling lights, reminds us that with the birth of Jesus the tree of life has blossomed anew in the desert of humanity. The crib and the tree: precious symbols, which hand down in time the true meaning of Christmas!

Today, amid a politically correct and consumerist Christmas attitude, we are allowing ourselves to be stripped of our traditions, the dearest and most venerable, the oldest and sweetest, the truest and most beautiful, so that carelessly, through neglect, we are abandoning Christ to follow the latest futile fad.

A sensitive Christian would not let anything replace the Crib and Christmas tree.
Commemorating these means passing on the history of popular piety and religiosity. Putting up the Crib and Christmas tree in homes and public places, not in a folkloric manner but as symbols of faith, prayer and offering, means rediscovering joy and the solidarity of friendship, the human tenderness of relations and the piety of souls of enchanted children and adults.

In advancement of faith, family and fraternity may we all strive to keep Christ in Christmas!
With respectful and cordial best wishes I remain,
Sincerely yours,

Paul Kokoski | Hamilton, Ontario, Canada


Christmas donations

Keep these facts in mind when "donating" for Christmas this year, or even when giving for yet another natural disaster.....

American Red Cross – Marsha J. Evans, President and CEO's salary for the year was $651,957 plus expenses. (That's $74.68 an hour IF she works EVERY hour of EVERY day.) 

Brian Gallagher, President of the United Way receives a $375,000 base salary, plus numerous expense benefits. (That's $42.95 an hour IF he worked EVERY Hour of EVERY day.) 

UNICEF CEO receives $1,200,000 per year, plus all expenses, and a ROLLS ROYCE where ever he goes. Only cents of your dollar goes to the cause. (Or $1369.86 an hour IF he works EVERY hour of EVERY day.) 

On the other hand, The Salvation Army's Commissioner, Todd Bassett, receives a salary of $13,000 per year (plus housing) for managing this $2 billion dollar organization. 

No further comment necessary. I guess who you give your money to this year is a no-brainer. Please share this information.

C.O. Jones | Desert Hills


Your newspaper

I just love your newspaper. I live in Whitefish, Montana now and will be moving back to north Scottsdale after the New Year.

We have a weekly paper here that I enjoy as well. Visit It is owned by Maury Povich and Connie Chung.

Don, we too have some very passionate, opinionated folks.  I've have been known to add my (un-welcomed stance) on some articles over the four years I've lived here, especially on how they regard out of town visitors or new residents. I prefer small town life in Cave Creek/Carefree where newcomers are welcomed … and of course the great weather.

Thanks again for the wonderful job you do. Happy Holidays.

Rose Mary Dolce-Skarphol | Whitefish, Montana


Capitol Hill Democrats just do not understand economics in a free society

Thank you Minority Leader Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-KY), for your intelligent input on the US Senate floor concerning the Capitol Hill Democrats' leadership in preventing the extension of the G.W. Bush tax relief legislation. The Capitol Hill Democrats just don't get it!

America's cry in the November 2 election was to "stop the spending" and "create jobs, jobs, and more jobs." These liberal Capitol Hill Democrats continue to spend more of (y)our tax revenues, then increase taxes on the very ones who have the abilities and that includes resources to create more jobs. Do Capitol Hill Democrats plan to find lower-income and middle-income persons to create new jobs and the expansion of existing jobs? Capitol Hill Democrats will give their all to Labor Unions and their leaders who destroy jobs, but refuse to help the very ones who create jobs.

The Obama/Reid/Pelosi team continues with a totally failed economic plan as the Capitol Hill Democrats choose to persist on "taxing the rich", rather than encouraging the enticement of creating more jobs.

Their "scam" is to blame upper-income taxpayers for the Capitol Hill Democrats' own failures. American workers want jobs so as they can go to work. Capitol Hill Democrats continue to weaken our economy with their destabilization approach.

How does tax relief assist would-be middle-income workers who do not have a job?  All higher-income and middle-income taxpayers need tax relief. Capitol Hill Democrats just do not understand that higher-income taxpayers do create new jobs and expand existing jobs.
Capitol Hill Republicans are insisting that legislators continue the G.W. Bush tax cuts to all indefinitely. The tax relief is needed to encourage middle-income individuals and families to maintain their families, their homes, etc.  Higher-income taxpayers need tax relief to invest in new businesses and expand existing businesses.

One percent of the higher-income taxpayers pay "38 percent of all taxes" collected. Ten percent of the higher-income taxpayers pay "70 percent of all taxes" collected by our government; 47 percent of all households in America owed no income taxes for 2009.

Are Capitol Hill Democrats legislating redistribution of America's wealth by taxing the higher-income more and more rather than encouraging the higher-income taxpayers to invest in more and more jobs?

Some Capitol Hill Democrats suggested that Sen. McConnell is insulting their abilities. For whatever the Capitol Hill Democrats believe and/or practice, each and all should take a short class on "Economics 101" so as they may understand growing an economy in a free and open market.

Oscar Y. Harward | Monroe, North Carolina


More paperwork for job creators

After all the wrapping paper is put away this Christmas, job creators will have to start stocking up on a different kind of paper: tax forms.

When Democrats passed their health care bill earlier this year, they claimed the legislation would be "paid for" and would, in fact, reduce the deficit by $100 billion. They achieved that price tag with accounting gimmicks and by scrounging for revenue, or, in Washington speak, "offsets" wherever they could find it: new taxes, Medicare cuts, and dumping costs on the states.

Now, however, it turns out that one of the offsets creates so much paperwork for job creators that many Democrats want to repeal it – but they don't want to "pay for" the $19 billion it was supposed to raise.

The provision is known as the 1099 reporting requirement. It requires all businesses to file a 1099 IRS tax form for each purchase they make over $600. Beginning in 2012, each business would have to file a tax form detailing its annual transactions with its paper supplier, bottled water distributor, office supply dealer, phone and Internet companies, and every other vendor with which it contracts. The provision will be especially burdensome to the small businesses that have fewer resources to deal with the piles of new paperwork.
The Wall Street Journal provided the example of what a midsized trucking company would face under the new reporting requirement. Its office would have to collect "hundreds of thousands" of receipts from every gas station where its drivers filled up, determine where the drivers spent more than $600, and then file countless forms with the IRS.

The bill's authors claim this requirement will help the federal government collect new revenue from business income, but it's questionable whether the federal government would benefit at all.

The Treasury Department's National Taxpayer Advocate says the costs will be "disproportionate as compared with any resulting improvements in tax compliance." The Taxpayer Advocate Service also says it is "highly likely the IRS will improperly assess penalties it must abate later, after great expenditure of taxpayer and IRS time and effort."
In other words, this requirement is an expensive headache for small businesses and for the government.

Last week, two amendments were offered to repeal this provision. One, offered by Republican Senator Mike Johanns, would have absorbed the estimated cost of the repeal by trimming other costs associated with the health care bill. He, like all other Republicans, does not support the health care bill, but believes we must repeal the 1099 provision now to avoid dumping new burdens on job-creating businesses.

The other amendment, offered by Democrat Senator Max Baucus, would have repealed the provision without an offset. Both amendments failed.

Some Democrats now say they didn't initially understand the implications of the 1099 provision when it was added to the Obamacare bill. That's not surprising, given the hasty manner in which the overall measure was written and passed.

Much ado was made about the supposed affordability of this bill. But as Democrat House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said, the bill had to pass so we could find out what's in it. Now we know and shouldn't be surprised as the costs start piling up.

By U.S. Senator Jon Kyl | Senate Republican Whip
Senate Finance and Judiciary committees


Security requires a strong military

The Obama administration is contemplating major reductions in the Defense Department budget to help cut into the huge deficits incurred by the President and his Washington cronies.  They plan on reducing our conventional military forces, and increase special operations units to combat the terrorist threats around the world.

An increase in special operations forces is warranted to target terrorist organizations, including al Qaida, the Taliban, Hezbollah, Hamas and other radical Islamic extremists in a number of countries.  Additionally, large scale conventional military operations are necessary to pacify areas in host countries that house the terrorists, and staging bases are needed to launch targeted operations against the terrorists.

Let’s not forget about the threats posed by the large ground forces of Iran; the North Korean army poised against South Korea; and the massive Chinese Communist conventional forces available to threaten Taiwan, Japan and other Asian countries.  Due to its vibrant economy, which is growing 10 percent annually, China has embarked on a significant upgrade of its land forces and strategic weapons systems, and has implemented a naval shipbuilding program that includes aircraft carriers and submarines. Russia is also upgrading its military.

We need to maintain robust military forces, both special operations and conventional forces, to combat terrorist organizations and deter countries from hosting terrorists, and to oppose the forces of totalitarian regimes in the world that threaten our national security and the security of our allies.  History has taught us military weakness is the breeding ground for wars.

Donald A. Moskowitz | Londonderry, New Hampshire


Republicans holding America hostage

The Republicans are holding everything hostage until they get their precious tax cuts for the rich: not just don't-ask-don't-tell, which of course you'd expect of them, but now relief funds for sick 9/11 workers. And everything else. Everything – those babies! Folks, this is what they do. This is how they think. This is who they are. And this is what Americans voted for? There's only one word for Republican voters: Stupidi-Tea.

J. Andrew Smith | Bloomfield, New Jersey