Monday, May 30, 2016

Land of Disenfranchisement

Peruse this new data and think of Governor Susana Martinez, Congressman Steve Pearce, State Land Commissioner Aubrey Dunn, and the members of the state legislature who act as lackeys for the Fossil Fuel, Livestock and Mining industries.  You will notice that every state that has more protected natural lands than New Mexico also has a better economy.

You can read the full report here.

Prediction

For the first time Mayor Berry will be thrown under the Bus by the Albuquerque Journal Editorial Board after his weak kneed comments on silly stings carried out by APD.  But when?

Sunday, May 29, 2016

Enough

“I’m not going to get after them for doing something they thought was right,”  but I think it’s good that we’re moving in a different direction.”  That was a quote from Mayor Berry on the silly and counterproductive stings carried out by APD on homeless people when they sold $10 hits of meth to them. 

This one quote without a doubt shows the weakness of the Command structure surrounding the APD.  And it starts at the top.

In the meantime we have innocents dying in drive by shootings.  A man being dragged to death under a car. Police opening fire at a domestic violence scene.  And a lack of leadership and coordination at the recent sideshow called a Trump rally.

When I served as Mayor, Chief Jerry Galvin instituted something called Compstat to track crime and gangs.  There was also a concerted effort at creating community policing in ABQ.  It all was working until subsequent Mayors Chavez and Berry let it all melt down.  And now we are where we are.

The much troubled Los Angeles Police Department has adopted Compstat.  It has resulted in a dramatic drop in gang violence.  Read about it here.

In the meantime, it is time for some resignations at the City of Albuquerque.  Things need to get back on track.

Saturday, May 28, 2016

Historic

We may be seeing the rise of the most dangerous man in American History.  More so than George Wallace or Joseph McCarthy.  Of course that would be that flycatcher Trump.

His comments that there is no drought in California is almost surreal.  He says the water is in short supply because it is going into the Pacific Ocean to save fish.  And this man is hoping to lead this country.

If you have HBO you should watch last nights Bill Maher show.  His guest was Scott Adams of Dilbert fame.  Adams is a self described expert in persuasion techniques and said that Trump is one of the best users of persuasion that he  has ever seen.  I think he has it pegged.  And it makes Trump seem even more dangerous.

The people who support Trump truly are intellectual Zombies.  They follow each other looking for brains, but they won't find them in the Trump phenomenon.

Thursday, May 26, 2016

Water in the Rio Grande


video
Trump has left town and his path of hate spreads through the country.  But the Rio Grande rolls along.

Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Twisted

The Albuquerque Journal did a good job on reporting the Trump speech and surrounding circus.  It was a good circus at least, except for the punks who tried to turn a peaceful protest into a violent one.  Those types are always around looking for a reason to be destructive.  There is no way to control them.  The most twisted part of the coverage comes from national pundits who think that Trump's denigrating remarks on Governor Susana Martinez was another attack on Hispanics in general.  In fact it was just political theater.  Many Latinos in New Mexico have about as much respect for her as they do for Trump.

The crowd inside the Convention Center could not have been more different than the one outside.  Many inside were caucasians who think  their lives suck because of the people outside.  Racism is big with them, no matter what they say.  There were also a few racists outside throwing insults  to 'white boy' Trump supporters.  Those types could almost be suspected of taking money from someone to do it, but probably not.

This is all just a preview of what America would look like under Trump.  

Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Scrubbing

UNM powers that be are scrubbing clean the email system at the institution to make sure any vestiges of independence are eradicated.  Of course, this will cause lots of confusion and a waste of time.  I have spent the last couple of months changing my email from the hapless Comcast servers to Gmail.  It isn't easy.  Surely, there must be better things to do at UNM.

Trump will be here tonight giving a speech, but we will be watching the finale to the "Night Manager' on AMC.  It is all fiction too, but better fiction.  And it won't destroy America's standing in the world.

It was almost hilarious to watch Governor Susana Martinez explain why she wouldn't attend Trump's appearance.  She stumbled and mumbled that she was busy taking care of New Mexico, and didn't have the time.  I can now see why she has never submitted herself to questions at a news conference.  She doesn't have what it takes to field questions that she hasn't pre approved.


Monday, May 23, 2016

Misc.

As we returned from our trip to see Granddaughters Alex and Kate in Fort Collins we passed through one square mile area in Denver that has more construction cranes up than the entire state of New Mexico  has had in the last six years.  This construction boom in Colorado is the result of a Governor who concentrates  on economic issues instead of knife fighting.

The GOP knives were out and Governor do nothing Susana Martinez and her evil guidance counsellor Mccleskey were defeated when Harvey Yates buried Pat Rogers in the National Committee man race. I have often complained about the oil man Yates and his industry, but he is a gentleman and I am glad he won this contest.  Of course I will be happy when the GOP loses control of the 4th floor and the House of Representatives in Santa Fe.  But maybe this election could be a sign of a willingness to work together to get some economic development started.

I am starting to get calls from folks wanting to run for Mayor in Albuquerque.  I will have coffee this week with one prospective candidate.  I keep hoping that we find a person who wants to actually get things done, rather than just being there.  That automatically rules out every single city councillor who might want to run.  They can't even take heat for fluoridating the water again in our Albuquerque system.  They are gutless.

Thursday, May 19, 2016

Misc.

Should anyone be surprised that the Democratic Presidential campaign is getting nasty?  If they are they don't deal with reality very much.  Just look back to 2008.  As disappointing as Bernie's followers have become, the burden will certainly be on him to rally them after 'getting over it' after the Democratic Convention.  If he can't rise to the defense of the nation over his own ego, then he will be as reviled as Ralph Nader and his lunatic fringe.  And making sure that Trump isn't elected is a defense of out nation.

The true rightwing leanings of the City's Chief Administrative Officer Rob Perry has shown through in his no vote to allow fluoride to be once again added out our water supply, thus endangering the dental health of a whole generation. He reasoned no one should be forced into medical prevention by drinking water with scientifically proven amounts of the additive to prevent decay.  He sounds like these crazy fundamentalists that let their kids die because god must want it that way.  Perry and the others who voted against this are really irresponsible.  And of course the Mayor never weighed in on the issue.  He is in total stealth mode.

The interest by major players in getting the Management Contract for Sandia Labs is a who's who of corporate and public big hitters.  Sandia Labs is a major employer with great paying jobs.  Its our tax dollars coming back in multiples to help our region's economy.  You know, those jobs that the GOP hates because they are 'government jobs.'


Monday, May 16, 2016

Misc

Nigerian dwarf goats have been given a big boost in Rio Rancho.  The City Council there has now allowed goats and chickens on residential lots in the city that Intel made.  That is profound somehow, I am must not sure what it means.

PNM sent out a very complicated and unreadable letter with their bills this week.  They will be switching over their metering system from human meter readers to wireless downloads.  There is nothing wrong with that and in the long run it is a good idea.  Costs will be covered by an additional fee which supposedly will disappear after a few years.  The real problem here is that PNM sent out this piece of crap which they hoped no one would try to understand.  A simple letter explaining what was really intended would have made PNM look like a corporation that really cared about its customers.  This was a strictly amateur communication.

The rightwing media is up in arms about supposed censorship at Facebook.  They say the Facebook editors are not allowing conservatives to get their message out on that social media giant.  First off, that probably isn't true.  Just look at what some of your relatives say on that site.  Secondly, I look at the Albuquerque Journal and Fox News and wonder why their entire existence is given over to pushing rightwing philosophies with editorial views spilling over into reporting of news.



Thursday, May 12, 2016

Misc.

Journal Columnist Winthrop Quigley talked about lists this morning.  You know those lists that rank Albuquerque and New Mexico at the bottom of all lists for prosperity and well being.  Some of those lists really don't mean much as he points out, but a lot of them indicate how bad things are in the Land of Enchantment.  And state tax revenue collections are now down another 10% over last year and that is very worrying.  The one list that the Albuquerque Journal will never seek to report on is the one that ranks the effectiveness of our Governor and Mayor in dealing with this economic malaise.

This is a NASA satellite photo of a methane cloud over the Four Corners region of NM.  It is a bad thing.

The powers that be better start thinking about who will be our next State Land Commissioner.  The Democrats need to think long and hard about finding new blood to take on that fossil fuel industry mascot Aubrey Dunn.  Right now he is fighting new regulations by the Bureau of Land Management that would stop flaring of methane gas.  That flaring is costing NM a lot of money and environmental damage, and yet Dunn thinks it is okay.  My advice is for the Democrats to get behind a strong conservationist who has never run for the post before.  That would not include Ray Powell or myself.  We are yesterday's pols.


Monday, May 09, 2016

POW WOW

I haven't opined on the issue of UNM shutting the venue out for the annual Gathering of Nations at UNM's Pit.  But I get the feeling that we don't really know the whole story here.  Especially since UNM acted in an unusual and arrogant way.  That  usually isn't the way the Administration handles things.

I am reminded of a controversy I got into when I was Mayor.  A large promoter came into the Convention Center for a show.  Afterwards he started demanding refunds for his fees to rent the large venue.  The management said he had been a very difficult tenant and we made the decision to not make refunds and he then ran to the media saying  he had been wronged.  Of course the ABQ Journal was immediately on my case that 'the customer was always right.'  Which isn't always true for sure.  So we did a little investigating on the promoter and found out he pulled this prank in every city where he rented facilities.  It was nothing more than a scam aimed at reducing his costs.  But of course the ABQ Journal ignored that part of the story.

So, UNM's decision might be based on other factors than just making a stupid decision.  I wonder if we will hear their part of the story, if there is one.

Sunday, May 08, 2016

Misc.

I had no idea that so many workers in New Mexico got no sick leave in their jobs.  The Albuquerque Journal story by Dan McKay this morning  points out that 'left leaning' groups are trying to pass a voters initiative to mandate such sick leave in the city of Albuquerque.  The opponents, like the Albuquerque Chamber of Commerce and the food service industry are fighting mad about the initiative.  But the Journal doesn't call them 'right leaning.'  Aside from that egregious omission, the Journal reports the idea that jobs will leave for Texas where sick leave isn't required.  So, if you think about it, that is really illogical.  Why would a worker move to Texas if they could get sick leave here?  The kinds of jobs they are talking about won't really leave NM because they are required here for things to function.  And, don't most of our kids leave for places like California where wages and benefits are higher?   Having said that, I think this issue belongs on the plate of the Legislature and Feds.

I don't agree much with Columnist George Will, but I have to say his missive on  Trump this morning is nothing less than a plea to keep him out of office.  It almost seems to say, Vote for Hillary for one term or the GOP is toast.

And finally, you must read this post from SciFi author David Brin.  He has it all figured out for sure.

Thursday, May 05, 2016

Misc.

It was exhilarating to see a group of economists and tax experts take on the right wing Rio Grande Foundation's assertion that New Mexico's taxes are too high.  The well respected professional group really showed what a shallow entity that  Foundation really is. They effectively put a dunce cap on Paul Guessing, its chief purveyor of bad information.   It is interesting that Wynn Quigley's column in the Albuquerque Journal wrote about it this morning, because that publication regularly publishes OPEDs from the mysteriously funded group.  And those OPEDs are mostly B.S.

I  have to marvel at the ingenuity of the people behind the "Meow Wolf" exhibition in Santa Fe.  That unusual art show has spawned a new destination spot for people all over the planet.  It is now spawning other economic development in the area.  Oh, that  we could get that kind of innovative development out of our current city administration in the Duke City.

Monday, May 02, 2016

Revenant

The cattle growers in northern New Mexico are like that guy in the movie "The Revenant."  They just  keep reappearing when you think they may have subsided into a more reasonable association.  Now they are upset because there are new Forest Plans in the making in the Santa Fe and Carson National Forests.

They have worn many hats over the years.  They have called themselves 'People for the West', the 'Sagebrush Rebellion', and the 'Wise Use Movement'.  But really all they are is a group of folks who think that Forest Service public lands belong to them and them alone.  They say Teddy Roosevelt stole the land from them, while conveniently forgetting their ancestors stole it from someone else.  Now they are saying the new Forest Plans are about discrimination against Latinos.  It is not.  It is about protecting watersheds and wilderness.

It is like the politics of the Middle East really.  Remembering and fighting over grudges from hundreds of  years ago.  None of it makes sense in this millennium.  Old ways die hard, and this long term fight by cattle growers in the north will die in the near future as a younger generation replaces them.