More Millennial Muddling

March 26, 2015

Steve Goldstein (Twitter) hosted a conversation Tuesday on KJZZ’s Here and Now program with Ben Casselman about the “narrative”being advanced by “the media” (and developers) about the economic impact of the millennial generation, particularly their supposed preference for urban living. Casselman is the chief economics writer for Nate Silver’s Five ThirtyEight website (Twitter). You may […]

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Battle of Wits, Cave Creek and Scottsdale

March 18, 2015

I’ve been a little busy lately, but I have been recently amused by the news of the Cave Creek council recall that saw four incumbents dumped this week. The Arizona Republic covered the story (“Final results“) with a thin veneer of “journalism” that lacked any depth of the issues underlying the battle of wits–or half-wits, […]

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Bond Peddlers

March 4, 2015

David Smith wants to raise your taxes. Yes, the same David Smith who wants to cut your taxes. And the same David Smith who has no problem giving away millions of dollars of your tax money to subsidize private businesses like the National Football League, the Professional Golfers Association, the Scottsdale Cultural Council, and polo […]

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Desert Water Crisis

March 4, 2015

In its continuing coverage of the great Southwestern Drought, which seems to magically disappear from our minds every time it rains, the Arizona Republic published yet another great piece of work by Brandon Loomis this week. It doesn’t help our awareness that the Republic buries a print front-page story in the muddled mess that AZCentral […]

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The Myth of Light Rail’s Property Value Impact

March 2, 2015

I recently had a tedious Facebook debate with Ed Casper about (or at least starting with) the notion that light rail has a significant positive effect on property tax revenue. The mechanism by which it is purported to do this is enhancement of property values along the light rail corridor. The original commentator reposted something […]

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Quote of the Day: Index to Character

March 2, 2015

The best index to a person’s character is how he treats people who cannot do him any good, and how he treats people who cannot fight back. Pauline Phillips, aka “Abigail Van Buren,” 1918-2013, writer of “the most widely-syndicated newspaper column in the world” (via ST reader AS).

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Quote of the Day: Shock and Honesty

February 25, 2015

It’s discouraging to think how many people are shocked by honesty and how few by deceit. Sir Noël Coward, 1899-1973, English playwright, from “Blithe Spirit” (courtesy of ScottsdaleTrails reader DB)

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Using Less Water is Good for AZ Business

February 23, 2015

This “My Turn” appeared in today’s Scottsdale Republic: How using less water is good for business in Arizona, region Water is without a doubt the lifeblood of the West and this is nowhere truer than in Arizona. The total economic value of the Colorado River to Arizona was recently quantified in a study conducted by […]

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Jim Lane does a Travolta

February 23, 2015

The following letter-to-the editor appeared in the Saturday Scottsdale Republic. It’s too bad that more folks like Mr. Jonas didn’t pay attention during Jim Lane’s campaign for re-election in 2011 (when he skipped more than half the debates, and badly goofed the events he did attend), or during Lane’s four-year term before that. This is […]

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David Smith’s Real Tax Reform is No Substitute for Real Budget Discipline

February 23, 2015

David Smith’s Feb. 24 Scottsdale Independent column “Scottsdale City Council to debate real tax reform,” describes nothing more than a publicity stunt. First of all, eliminating the food tax wasn’t Smith’s idea. It was first proposed several years ago by the late, great city councilman Tony Nelssen. Smith can’t even be original, let alone intellectually […]

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