Saturday, October 15, 2011


The other day, The Arizona Republic endorsed Wes Gullett over Greg Stanton for Mayor of Phoenix. This did not come as a surprise. The Republic has a long and distinguished history of supporting the worst possible candidate. One fondly recalls Little Ben Quayle and Jan Brewer and Trent Franks and Rick Renzi and--well, the list is long and life is short. Suffice it to say Wes Gullett fits right in.

Gullett has been a GOP hack off and on for many years now. At one time or another both John "Maverick" McCain and J. Fife "They Should Have Known I was Lying On My Financial Statements" Symington have signed his paychecks. Quite a resume, huh? But mostly he's been a lobbyist.

A lobbyist is someone who scuttles around the the darker corners of our statehouses carrying large sacks of money. They ply politicians with lunches, or tickets to ball games, or just plain cash. Like the vast majority of the Wall Street Gang, most of them do nothing to make things better for the rest of us. They certainly do not have our best interests in mind. That isn't the point. Influence and power are the points. Lobbyists buy influence and power, which I might add in Arizona are surprisingly cheap, and the public good be damned. They are, in essence, purveyors of anti-democracy.

To repeat, Wes Gullett is a lobbyist.

The Republic called Gullett "right for these times." If I thought anybody down there had a sense of humor, I'd say they were being sarcastic. Alas. They think he'll be more likely to rein in the unionized city worker's benefits than Stanton. If you really believe that the benefit package of city workers is the most pressing issue facing the city then you are just as stupid as the Republic's editorial board, and you probably should vote for Gullett.

The paper also supports Gullett's goal of "leveraging city investments" (I think this means trying to privatize whatever he can get his clammy little hands on) and "getting government out of the way" of business. Sigh. Maybe someday the desert hillbillies will wake up and realize that electing people to govern you that don't believe in government is just plain dumb. Maybe not.

To repeat once again, Wes Gullett is a lobbyist. As such he has spent most of his professional life acting on the belief that government's only true purpose is to enrich his friends.

**In the interest of full disclosure, I once sat next to Greg Stanton at a banquet of some sort. To be honest I can't remember a single interesting thing he said. At the time I wasn't overly impressed. However, compared to Wes Gullett, Greg Stanton is a combination of Franklin Roosevelt, Thomas Jefferson and Mark Twain.

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