By Ray Stern
By New Times
By Amy Silverman
By Stephen Lemons
By Stephen Lemons
By Monica Alonzo
By Chris Parker
By New Times
In this economy, you need more than lofty ideals to pass a tax! And, by the way, Arizona can't afford to keep its parks open, so there is no way that voters can afford to pass this.
It would be good for Arizona: Not only would this minimal sales tax help improve arts organizations across the entire state, it would also go toward other institutions that are dearly beloved and attended by many citizens and visitors — including the Phoenix Zoo, Reid Park Zoo in Tucson, the Desert Botanical Garden, the Sonoran Desert Museum, and the Arizona Science Center.
And it's really not about helping struggling arts organizations; it's about making Arizona a more vibrant place to live.
Look at Denver. What used to be a "cow town" is now a highly competitive place for new business and for new residents. Denver passed such a tax years ago.
Don't be shortsighted. This would be good for Arizona. If the 10 percent population erosion is, indeed, true (which I seriously doubt), having a more vibrant "scene" in Arizona would help tremendously.
Why expel these engines of progress?: It's heartbreaking that brilliant and polished minds can go to waste. Our academic and technological status in the world would only be helped by these kids.
I cannot understand the level of fear some people must have to choose to expel these engines of progress. Each of these kids [could] lead an organization or begin his or her own business — which would create job opportunities for many others.
If you cannot see how this benefits, you are purposely blind.
Truth is, even if the immigration issue were resolved and these kids were allowed to work here, those who suffer from fear and hate would still be complaining. These cowards hide behind an enforce-all-laws argument that holds no water. It's the same type of mentality that was behind the old Jim Crow laws in the South.
It is very nearsighted of legislators to propose and enact laws that punish children for the sins of their parents and that force these brilliant minds to waste their potential, or to take it elsewhere. Please support the DREAM Act.
Jorge Gutierrez, Laveen
Embrace the smart kids: Isn't it pathetic that our country takes out its ethnic hatred on brilliant children who could be the best we have to offer?
We need to get our act together, and for the sake of patriotism, embrace the intelligent young people in our midst — no matter where they came from.
If we don't, we're doomed. And all this to placate ignorant citizens who couldn't hold a candle to these kids when it comes to smarts?
We must let undocumented college graduates and students ready to serve in our armed forces contribute to our nation! It just makes sense.
Omar Tedesco, Phoenix
Time for immigration reform: Ironically, Arizona's best hope of returning to its old growth model of economic development (and thus far nothing substantive has been proposed as an alternative) is immigration reform at both the federal and (especially) the state levels.
Arizona has long depended on population increase to grow its economy: As new residents move here, new housing is needed for them; that, in turn, gives retailers new opportunities in the communities where new housing and new workers earning new wages now live.
The effect on the construction and retail sectors is direct, but the effect on the rest of the economy is just as real, as a chain reaction takes place when new wages, received by merchants, are invested in capital equipment, spent on other goods and services, and made available to the local financial community.
As for immigrants taking jobs, it didn't seem to be the case back before the Great Recession when the state unemployment rate was 4.5 percent. Don't forget: The number of jobs isn't fixed, provided that the economy is growing. It isn't a zero-sum game where winners win only at the expense of losers.
Arizona previously relied on three broad classes for its population growth: retirees from the Midwest and East Coast, undocumented immigrants, and citizen workers seeking a new start in sunny Arizona.
Now that the Great Recession has caused a housing glut and placed many mortgages underwater, many of the citizens who might have moved here from other states cannot afford to sell their houses and move. Many of the retirees have seen their wealth, whether in the form of housing values or stock values, decimated.
The weakness of the job market means that many of them will cling to jobs in their home states; many of the older ones will defer retirement and work part-time to supplement their Social Security income.
That leaves the immigrants. How very shortsighted of Republican moderates to allow their party to be taken over by extremists. How very shortsighted of Democrats to allow themselves to be intimidated into silence instead of embracing Hispanics as an up-and-coming electoral force.
Emil Pulsifer, Phoenix