Monday, April 30, 2007

Intersecting Stories

There were some interesting intersecting stories in the New York Times today. One was about Barrack Obama's Christian beliefs and his relationship with his Pastor at his church. The Times said,

"He began his presidential announcement with the phrase “Giving all praise and honor to God,” a salutation common in the black church. He titled his second book, “The Audacity of Hope,” after one of Mr. Wright’s sermons, and often talks about biblical underdogs, the mutual interests of religious and secular America, and the centrality of faith in public life."

Okay, that doesn't mean he is going to impose his beliefs on us, but it does make me a little uneasy.

Now switch over to Istanbul, Turkey. The times ran a story today that over 700,000 people marched in opposition to what they saw as a threat to their secular form of government. They greatly fear that the current administration may slowly ease Islamic law into the government. Turkish citizens have relatively great freedom in that part of the world and they don't want to regress to a society that suppresses individuals rights.

One thing is for sure, at the end of the day religion is present in all things political to one degree or another. Only the citizens vigilance will keep it at an acceptable level.

Saturday, April 28, 2007

GOP Lament

Should I, a strong Democrat stay silent about problems in New Mexico Republican circles. Hell no!

The stuff circulating on the Republican blogs and now in the newspapers about the fight to run the Republican party is amazing. It is nasty and childish. I love it.

Instead of wasting time on this the Republicans should look over the state of affairs in their elected hierarchy. There are four high elected officials for the GOP in the state. Three of them are in some sort of ethical trouble. We know that Senator Domenici and Congresswoman Heather Wilson stand to lose much for their hatchet job on the US Attorney David Iglesias. (He was on Bill Maher's show last night and really dumped on Pete and Heather.) State Land Commissioner Pay Lyons is involved in a money laundering scheme that hid monies given to his campaign through a Political Action Committee. That money came from a developer in Las Cruces who got a sweetheart deal from Lyons. There is probably more to come on this issue.

The only GOP elected guy who isn't in trouble officially is Congressman Steve Pearce from down south. But he is still convinced that bush is a great guy and that we are winning the war in Iraq. Maybe he fits into the category that Bill Maher pointed to last night on his show. He said that 29% of the American People still think that bush is doing a great job. At the same time 25% of the American people think the second coming of Christ will occur this year. Maher thinks maybe these are the same people. So do I.

Friday, April 27, 2007

20 Months and Counting

Uh, 20 months of campaigning is a bit much to take, even when the future of the world is at stake.

Having said that I thoroughly enjoyed the Democrat's Presidential 'Debate' on MSNBC. I know I am partisan, but Bill Richardson really did well from the start by actually saying what he would do about the Iraq War. He would bring home the troops by the end of the calendar year and he would preside over an International effort, including Syria and Iran, to rebuild the sect driven country.

Those were concrete proposals than the others just didn't seem to be able to match. For some reason I got uncomfortable every time Clinton, Edwards and Obama answered questions. Don't think I wouldn't vote for them if they are the nominee, but they have helped preside over this mess in the Middle East and they can not just explain it away.

I am going to read former CIA leader George Tenet's book in which he chastises cheney and bush. After reading excerpts printed in the New York Times today I am more fully convinced that the President and Vice President should be impeached, or just resign. Seriously.

Thursday, April 26, 2007

Tough Talk and Silly Talk

Mayor Marty Chavez says he is going to 'take down' the senseless gang bangers that defaced the Petroglyphs at the National Monument on the west side of Albuquerque. This is strange in that no one did more damage to that Monument than his administration did by building a road through the middle of it for his west side development friends. Well, that is water under the bridge and it would be interesting to see if it has made commutes any easier. I doubt it has shortened trips to Albuquerque by much.

I am not sure what Marty means by 'take down', but it could mean something draconian. I am all for putting these gangs to rest but it seems it never happens. During my four years as Mayor and in Marty's prior term there were assurances that the APD gang unit could control and disband the gangs. That sure hasn't happened and their resiliency is disturbing. Kind of like Iraq's warring factions I guess.

The Journal's Rene Romo had a good story on my former opponent in the Land Commissioner race taking lots of money from a Las Cruces developer that he made a sweetheart deal with. Pat Lyons took tens of thousands of dollars from this developer via a Political Action Committee. Lyons says he doesn't know where the Pac's money came from and the developer says he didn't know where his money went. I know politics and for them to say that strains credibility beyond comprehension. It is silly!

There needs to be a lot more work done on investigating business practices, or lack of them, at the State Land Office. Especially in the oil and gas area and the practice of unitizing leases so they don't have to be rebid. This could be costing millions to the State's Permanent Fund.

Wednesday, April 25, 2007


I don’t watch a lot of network television shows, but one I do like is the quirky “Boston Legal.”

Last night on the TV show one of the characters was musing about the upcoming presidential campaign and opined that for the last 20 years two families, the bushes and the Clintons had run the country. Now one of the two families, the Clintons, is trying to extend that to 24 years by running Hillary. Sometimes, it is easy to overlook the obvious which in this case is the emergence of ruling families in this democracy. It does make me uncomfortable. Maybe that is why I like Bill Richardson so much. He got where he is with out having to rely on a family dynasty. I like Obama too, but I really don’t get a clear picture of his positions. I know where Bill stands. It was a timely show in that Bobbi and I will soon be in Italy and on a cruise of the Greek Islands. We will see the greatness of the Italian and Greek dynasties on this trip.

My friend Rodger Beimer noted the other day the offspring of Bruce King, and his brothers Don and Sam are now all elected officials in the State of New Mexico. Bruce King’s son Gary is Attorney General, Don’s daughter Rhonda is a Legislator, and Sam’s son, one time strong Democrat David King, is now a Republican Public Regulatory Commissioner. I guess the King family genetic code is strong for politics too.

Monday, April 23, 2007


I will be filling in as New Mexico Natural Resource Trustee for a while for Martin Heinrich while he starts up his Congressional campaign. I performed those duties for Governor Richardson for three years and he called me Friday and asked me to fill in for the interim.

Martin is facing a real roller coaster ride. It seems like the only thing that matters any longer is how much money a congressional candidate can raise. It seems to be foremost in many people's minds rather than stands on the issues.

I am attaching a great note I got from my sister Carlota from Paris today. She stays there for a month in the spring while the Juniper pollen ravages Santa Fe. The note is self explantory and truly on point.

Dear Jimmy,

The elections have been fascinating!! Only one month of publicly financed campaigning, then on Saturday, a "day of reflection" with a blackout on all campaigning, then the election yesterday (a Sunday, so that everyone can vote), with the results announced at promptly 8pm last night which I watched on my cable TV

Fully 85 percent of the French voted in this election!! Can you believe it? The two top finishers were Tarkozy - a conservative and Royal - a woman Socialist. Everyone is very happy because these results have CLARITY, which the French love, and provide the French with a real choice for the run-off, which is in 10 days and then it is all finished. Also, the campaign demonstrated admirable civility - negative campaigning pretty much knocks one out of the race
What a difference from our system. How much we could learn from these Frogs!

Water Games

Apparently the rules are changing on development in Albuquerque. And it is being done in a discriminatory way. Let me explain. In my first term as Land Commissioner starting in 1982 I envisioned a planned community on state trust land south of the Albuquerque International airport. We named it Mesa del Sol. We commissioned a master plan of the area to build a truly planned community. When I left office at the end of my term the plan went no where. During my second term as Land Commissioner starting in 1991 I revived the project. My staff and I worked very hard at getting the 12,000 acres annexed into the city. We agreed that the development would have to be built at 'no net expense' to the city. That meant the Mesa del Sol developers would pay for the infrastructure. The city of Albuquerque would provide the water. That was the whole point of annexation. Now the city wants the development to obtain its own water rights. This is not what was agreed to upon the annexation 15 years ago.

If that is going to be the case then there should be a total building moratorium put on the table in city and county government. All west side development should stop until the Mayor's west side developer friends obtain their own water rights. All activity at Journal Center should cease until they get their own water rights. Surprisingly, the Journal's usually pro development editorial board supported the rule change in an editorial today.

I am not saying this new way of doing development in Albuquerque would be wrong. I just think it should be done fairly and across the board. It bothers me that a master community developer like Forest City would be singled out for this treatment when the property they are developing has been in the city limits for almost 15 years. (About the same time as Journal Center I think and longer than most west side sprawl areas.) Also, the city was supposedly planning for the future when it purchased the San Juan Chama Project water which is now ready to come on line. Has that water, which was said to allow the city to have a population of over a million, just evaporated?

If the city doesn't require equal treatment on this matter then there is something else afoot here. This little bombshell dropped by the City/County water authority is highly suspicious to me.

Sunday, April 22, 2007

Brian, Luisa, Lola and Courtney

We had a nice Sunday afternoon. We went to celebrate with Brian Morris and his friends. Brian was just picked by the Board of the Downtown Action team to replace Luisa Casso as the DAT Executive Director. Both Brian and Luisa served as my Communications Officer when I was Mayor. They both went to work for DAT after I left office. Luisa served for seven years as ED and Brian will now replace her. Luisa is now Vice President for Economic Development for SunCal. That is the firm that bought out Westland Development a few months ago.

We discovered that two Dachshunds live with Brian in his home in the north valley. These two little dogs are incredibly laid back! Lola and Courtney run the place I think.

Friday, April 20, 2007

$400 and Other Stuff

Jeeesh! Talk about a way to separate yourself from the voters! A $400 haircut is a perfect way to do it. John Edwards is a good guy with the right instincts, but he is running for President and you really shouldn't charge $400 haircuts to the campaign when you have a lot of small donors sending money. This small little thing will really hurt Edwards I think.

The more I think about these kinds of things happening the more I think Bill Richardson might win this Primary election. Pretty soon, it will only be Richardson, Obama and Clinton in this race. Clinton and Obama will chew each other up and one will fall by the wayside. Then it is just Bill Richardson and the survivor. Of course, the Governor has to be careful too, and not make any small but deadly media fed mistakes.

Rick Homans has dropped out of the Congressional race against Heather Wilson. It is beginning to look like an easy race for Martin Heinrich. I plan on being one of his first donors.

Here is a blog from Heath Haussamen in Las Cruces that shows how corrupt the development process down there might be and Land Commissioner Pat Lyons role in it. It seems everything down there with the city, land commissioner, and developers is meant to stifle public input. It really isn't a good situation and this story will continue to grow. Someone at the AG's office or the Legislative Finance committee needs to look at the loss of potential income to the School Permanent Fund because of these 'sweet heart deals' that the Land Office is handing out to developers.

Thursday, April 19, 2007

Good Reading

A friend sent this great piece by Lee Iacocca yesterday. It is worth reading because it is full of common sense observations. After reading the front page of the New York Times this morning it is a breath of fresh air.

I was happy to see Governor Richardson make a strong statement on the Supreme Court's decision to deny women the right to control their own womb. The thing is, Bill Richardson recognizes that the majority of people in this country don't want these choices taken from them. However, it takes courage for the Governor to make such a statement because of the influence of the Catholic Church in New Mexico. The pictures of the Governor and the Archbishop on opposite sides on the front page of the Journal demonstrates the Governor's courage.

This whole situation also demonstrates the danger of electing people like bush and cheney. Now, we see the real lasting effect of these disastrous personalities on the well being of our country. We are surely moving backwards on America's civil liberties thanks to them and, an up until now a weak Democratic Party.

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Different Brands

I have always thought there were different brands of political corruption. They are treated differently by the media and the voting public.

Of course, everyone one is now familiar with allegations of corruption against former State Senator Manny Aragon and former Mayor Ken Schultz and their friends. They got away with $4 million or so according to the U.S. Attorney's Office. That is a lot of money. But it pales beside a different kind of corruption of another large New Mexico employer that has gone unheralded except for a small article today in the New York Times. I am talking about Lockheed Martin. They and another contractor had a 25 billion dollar job to refurbish and replace the Coast Guard's aging fleet and aircraft. They did shoddy work and got away with hundreds of millions. In one case they rebuilt a small fleet of boats for over $100 million. The boats were unseaworthy from the outset and now are being retired by the Coast Guard after being told it would cost another $50 million to fix them. Any one who works for Lockheed Martin should be a little embarrassed.

Where is the U.S Attorney on this kind of stuff? I suspect both corruption and sheer incompetence are present in this situation, but it looks like President Eisenhower's fear of the military industrial complex was well placed and that they are protected in a way that other folks are not. I have always felt that the bigger the scam the less the potential liability. It is amazing. I would like to see Lockheed Martin apologize to the American Taxpayer for this malfeasance. Fat Chance!

Monday, April 16, 2007


Not long ago I got a note from someone who was researching my mother's family tree. Her maiden name was Sapp and she was born in St. Joseph's, Missouri. Today he sent this picture via email of my mom. He didn't know if it was her. It was. We figure mom couldn't have been more than 19 when this photo was taken. She was born in 1918.

My mom, Dixie, met my dad Fermin in Washington, DC in the early 1940's. My dad was one of many young men who Senator Dennis Chavez would bring to Washington from Northern New Mexico to further their educations. My dad's room mate in Washington was another young guy from Pena Blanca named Joseph Montoya, who later became and Lt. Governor, Congressman and Senator. My dad told me he was always upset with Joe because he would wear my dad's good shoes without permission. My dad went to the nation's capital in 1936 or so and worked and went to accounting school. He had his own bookkeeping service for his entire career after working with the IRS.

My dad and mom returned to New Mexico in 1943 after the birth of my sister Carlota. It must have been a shock for mom to end up in New Mexico and its more basic lifestyle. She worked for Sandia Labs and the Atomic Energy Commission for many years before transferring to the Department of Energy. She eventually became the Chief of Payroll services for DOE when she moved back to DC in the 1970's after she and dad divorced.

Mom eventually returned to Albuquerque after having lived in Florida after her retirement. She died in 1993. I have been thinking a lot of her lately and it was interesting this photo came along when it did. I wish I had been there for her a little more in my younger years. Many of us just don't think about that when we march out on our own to careers and lives in other places. Our kids, Justin and Noelle, call a couple of times a week to check up on us. It means a lot.


I just sat down to write a little for my blog and checked out the news online first. It seems some maniacs have shot to death at least 20 people at the Virginia Tech campus in Blacksburg, VA. It is horrendous and shocking news and will be headline news that will dominate the media for weeks. It should be big news but it will also move even further back into the background the constant death stalking our service men and women and civilians in bush's war. It will do so because unlike the Iraq war, this will have some sense of affecting us all. It could happen on any campus in this country, so we all feel some sense of sacrifice and fear. That is good, but we need to have that same sense over the Iraq war.

Thursday, April 12, 2007

Imus and Vonnegut

I had coffee with a friend this morning who said that Imus had been caught in the perfect storm. bush hates Imus because Imus calls him a war criminal, the Clintons hated Imus because of his disrespect for them. So, everyone who has power hates Imus I guess. Yes, he said a really stupid thing as he has often done, but shouldn't it be up to the listening public to vote on whether he should be taken off the air? They can easily do that by simply switching off. I did that several years ago for the most part, although I do like what he says about bush.

I never to cease to be amazed by how so many groups and individuals claim 'victim' status when this kind of thing happens. Many try to be a victim and are egged on by professional victim advisers. Sad.

I am sure glad no one ever silenced Kurt Vonnegut. He died yesterday. I actually got to meet him when I was in New York at Columbia University in 1970. His books were decidedly unique and they had a large part in my anti war views. I am thinking I should read them again. My favorite book was "The Sirens of Titan." It may be the funniest book I have ever read. He creates in that book the religion that I often believe most in. He called it "The Church of the God of the Utterly Indifferent." His "Slaughter House 5" is a classic and should be read by every highschool student.

If you haven't read his books they are still speak to the human condition. For a good Obit on Vonnegut, read this.

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Heinrich is the One

I first met Martin Heinrich when he and Julie Hicks marched into my campaign office in 1997. I was running for Mayor and was considered to be a candidate with little chance of winning. The powers that be, the Chamber of Commerce and development community, had decided they wanted City Council Vicki Perea to take over for Marty Chavez. I won the race in a wild and crazy campaign that saw eight candidates running. Perea, who has now cloned into a Republican right winger, came in second.

Martin and Julie came to work in the campaign because of my stands on the importance of common sense development that did not threaten the sustainability of our water and air resources. I also felt it was important to reinvest in the older areas of the city that had been left on the side lines as the west side sprawled.

Martin and Julie were strong conservationists and moderate on many other issues. Julie worked as my Communications director after I was elected. She did a great job and she and Martin became our good friends. I remember going to visit Martin's place of work several times at a place called Cottonwood Gulch! He ran a camp for kids from all over the country to introduce them to nature and our wild lands in the west. He did great work for those kids futures and engendered a love of nature in them.

When Martin decided to run for City Council I whole heartedly endorsed him because of his progressive thinking and honesty. He easily won. I always kid him that his victory was because of his being tall and handsome. We all know tall guys always win, right? But really he won every vote because he had a vision for his mid heights city council district and he was able to articulately communicate it.

Now, he appears to be ready to take on Congresswoman Heather Wilson. I think he will win easily, even in the Primary against respected folks like Rick Homans and Al Park. Certainly, he would be a breath of fresh air. Martin is currently working as the New Mexico Natural Resource Trustee for Governor Richardson. That is a plus for him and I for one don't think the Governor will have much time to take sides in that Primary election for Congress.

He will be more articulate than any candidate that has run against Heather and he will not be afraid to take her on over issues like Iraq, the US Attorney embarrassment, and Heather's absolutely ghastly energy policies which are mainly centered on helping bush and his big oil friends.

I am going to work very hard for Martin and hope many of this blog's readers will do the same.

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Neighborhood Leaders

When David Rusk was Mayor many years ago he believed that it was important that there be Neighborhood Associations in Albuquerque. I think there are about 300 of them now in the Duke City. Generally, it was a good idea and when I was Mayor I tried to work with them. Often though those associations were really comprised of just a few people who were elected by just themselves to be officers of the associations.

City Councillors always worried about these folks and it is good for the most part that they did. However, what the associations wanted sometimes was not good for the city as a whole. I often found that these groups existed to protect the status quo. No changes, not ever, even if it was best for the city. I know that we would not have a vibrant East Downtown and Downtown scene right now if some of these associations had their way.

It was sad to see this morning in the Journal that badly needed infill development is being criticised by some northeast heights association officers. As I blogged yesterday, because of global warming there needs to be some changes on how development occurs in the Southwest and more dense housing is one of those options that are badly needed. Lets hope the city council doesn't overreact to a few people being upset about changes in their neighborhoods.

Saturday, April 07, 2007

Earth to Mayors and Developers.....

"Danger Will Robinson, Danger!" Remember that "Lost in Space" refrain as the Robot warned of pending doom? We need that robot now more than ever and he needs to be in the Mayor's Offices of the the Southwest and the offices of our tunnel visioned developers.

For the last week the Planet's scientific community have been crying, Danger Earth, Danger! And, it seems, Danger for the American Southwest especially. Think long term and permanent drought. And yet sprawl development plans are steaming ahead full speed with out any thought of their impact on our water resources. A perfect example right now is the annexation in Las Cruces that will essentially triple the size of the city with mostly state trust land. There has been little or no planning done on this resource. The feeble planning that is going on has been turned over by the land office to a developer who contributed over $30,000 to Pat Lyons in the last election. It was not bid out for a master plan so that the Land Office and citizens of Dona Ana County can be sure their tax dollars and water supplies are being looked after. It has been on the fast track and aided and abetted by the Las Cruces City Government with little public involvement.

In the meantime, I wait for a voice of reason to come out of some Mayor's office somewhere, or even a city councillor, to put a brake on things and ask some tough questions about future growth options in the face of global warming being real. Have Marty Chavez of Albuquerque, Mayor Mattiace of Las Cruces, other Mayors and city councils just decided to check out on these hard questions? Or are they so afraid of the developers that caution can just be thrown out the window to rest in a potential dust bowl.

Here is a simple thing to do. A Mayor of one our bigger cities should call together a panel of scientists, planners, citizens and yes, even developers, to look over current sprawl development practices to see if they are in our best interests. How hard can that be? Or do we conduct this giant experiment in the southwest to see if it all doesn't really matter that we change sprawl behavior?

Thursday, April 05, 2007

Four Weeks

I have been looking forward to our first long vacation since November of 2005 when Bobbi and I went to Thailand to see our daughter Noelle who was attending school there. (Noelle gets home for Easter tonight from Phoenix where she works for INTEL as a financial analyst. She sent me a note a while ago saying we should pick her up on the curb at the airport and that we would proceed straight to the Frontier Restaurant.)

Regarding the vacation thing, four weeks from today Bobbi and I will leave for Venice, Italy for a few days before picking up a Holland America Cruise bound for all of the Greek Isles and the Dalmatian coast. I have always wanted to see the Parthenon and I will now get to do it.

I remember I did an essay on the Parthenon when a student at Our Lady of Fatima School. I got a good grade on it. I didn't get many good grades so I remember that. I also remember the May Day ceremony when we were crowning the Virgin Mary. The crown burst into flames when it brushed the candles around the statue. The brave young girl who was anointed to do the crowning held on the burning tiara and looked around wondering what to do. Sister Bridget extinguished the blaze with water from a vase full of flowers. Those Dominican nuns were fast on their feet! They also scared the hell out of us guys with their disciplinary whacks with the blackboard pointers. If someone did that today they would end up being sued and put into the poor house.

While we are gone we have a full time house sitter. It makes more sense to pay a house sitter than to board the Beagles, who are now shedding two bales of hair a day. House sitting is actually cheaper and someone is around to take care of the place and blast any burglars. Besides my regular burglar alarm system I have a Remington and Mossberg back up system.

Have I mentioned Beagles snore really bad? I will record them sometime and post it in a blog.

Happy Easter.

Wednesday, April 04, 2007


I am enjoying this semi retired life since the campaign. This past two weeks has been spent going to Board meetings of Environmental non profits that I work with and doing major work around the house. I have been inhaling polyurethane fumes as I refinish weather stressed windows around the house. Just two more to go! Wheeze.

Today I made a trip to Western Organics for a pickup load of decorative bark chips for the flower beds and garden. I took a picture of this beautiful Tulip in my back yard. Nature has a symmetry we often overlook.

I had to chuckle today on seeing a headline story on Ken Shultz' campaign donations to politicians. Somehow the Journal didn't mention republican Congressman Steve Pearce and Congresswoman Heather Wilson as recipients. I had blogged on that yesterday. In fairness, those were on federal campaign reports and the Journal appeared to only check state records.

Runors are whirling that many more government projects that were awarded to Marc Schiff's architectural firm are coming under scrutiny. That might include city and county projects.

Tuesday, April 03, 2007

Who Gave Who Money

Lots of news stories today on the fact that the Governor is giving back donations that some of the principles involved in the current Metro Court House scandal gave to his campaigns. I wonder if anyone checked out if the accused also gave to Republicans. Why, yes they did. I went to the Federal Election Commission website and put in Ken Shultz' name. He gave money to Heather Wilson, Steve Pearce and lots to the Republican Party.

Political Agendas

The Albuquerque Journal had a story today on people's comments about Manny Aragon. The people were all customers at the Barelas Coffee House. I go there often for the best Huevos Rancheros in this quadrant of the Universe.

One of the commenters said she was disappointed that tax dollars were going to 'political agendas' rather than important things like welfare or students. Am I missing something here? Or is the word political so tainted now that its real meaning is lost on most folks?

I for one hope this country has a strong political agenda in the next two years that centers on reform and removal from office of people like bush. We need a political agenda that strengthens our economy, has a fair tax program and some international common sense. We need a political agenda that goes after terrorists rather than fighting unnecessary and stupid wars.

What we don't need is corruption and cronyism. Possibly the most effective way of dealing with those problems are real ethics and campaign reform where violations are treated as felonies with meaningful fines and jail time. I do hope the Governor calls the legislature back into session to get this done. He shouldn't let them go home until it is done and every legislator's home town media should make a big deal out of their position on the issue.

I can tell you right now that one of the biggest opponents of this reform in New Mexico is the oil and gas industry. They know their money has clout in politics in this state and if you look at the legislators from the oil patch they will never vote for limiting campaign contributions in this state. Just watch and see what happens!

P.S. Here is a note I got from a reader in reference to my comments on Senator Linda Lopez' vote on Campaign Reform.

Jim, I was reading your Friday Blog concerning Linda Lopez' vote on campaign finance reform. I'm not sure if you had all the details so I thought I'd fill you in on what I saw happening. Linda did vote for the bill, first getting it out of the Rules Committee (by one vote I believe) and then voting for it on the Senate floor (I think this would been a tie without her vote). What Linda would not vote for was a last minute (literally) concurrence because nobody could explain what changes the House had made. In context you should know that Linda had just been burned on the Gift Act when the House stripped her amendment that made the law apply to all government officials (local, state, school board etc.). The Senate voted concurrence without being aware of this change. Hence her caution in wanting to know what the House had done to public financing before giving it her vote. Keep on bloggin',

Sunday, April 01, 2007

Chickens in the Pot

The attorney for Toby Martinez, partner of former Mayor Ken Shultz and Senator Manny Aragon in corruption charges, told the Journal Sunday that he was surprised there weren't more indictments! As my Sunday morning coffee mates said, he is either getting ready to cop a plea for his client who will then flip more guilty parties the Prosecutors way, or he is just trying to make his client look like a minor player. I don't think he is a minor player since he got half of the $4 million dollars that was pilfered from the Metro Court construction kitty.

Now, as I understand it many other large construction projects using state appropriated funds might also be looked at. However, the statute of limitations might have run out on most of them. But those limitations don't apply if they involve racketeering. So if connections with some of the main players can be drawn to those other projects then this will get to be a huge case. Some of these could involve the Bernalillo County Court House, the District Attorney's Office, the National Hispanic Cultural Center, the new Bernalillo County Jail to mention a few.

I have heard a lot from my non political friends about all of this over the weekend. My golfing friends are all disgusted and all feel that all politicians are crooks. (I guess they think I am not or they wouldn't be playing golf with me.) They feel both Democrats and Republicans are just as guilty of corruption but that Republicans do it on a more sophisticated and grander scale. Think no bid contracts for Halliburton.

And the legislature went home without enacting meaningful campaign and ethics reform. Only in New Mexico!