Friday, August 16, 2013

Tucson Progressive Has MOVED to Word Press!

The Tucson Progressive blog has moved from Blogger to Word Press!

The new blog is a repository of my political writing from 2008 - present. The Word Press format allows me to feature not only my writing but also my photography.

Check out my newest blog posts at:,
on Tumblr,
on Facebook,
on YouTube, or
in Twitter @p2hannley.

Concerned about poverty in Tucson, here's a link to one of my recent posts on this topic:

In Light of Local Poverty, Tucson Needs Creative Direction & Progressive Economic Ideas

Muse Views-- my art blog-- will remain here.

Monday, May 23, 2011

Tucson Progressive on,, and facebook

Last fall I moved my Tucson Progressive blog to the Tucson Citizen. One of the reasons for moving to the Citizen was the vastly larger audience. I had seen the hits to this blog coming from the Citizen steadily increase. As a result, I decided to take my relationship with the Citizen to the next level.

All old and new stories can now be found at Tucson Progressive on the Citizen website.

I also have a Tucson Progressive facebook page. (Go, ahead, like me by clicking here.)

Last but not least, I have revived my Tucson Progressive Examiner blog.

You may see some stories in multiple places (mea culpa), but you also will see customized content for each of these blogs.

Here are some of my most recent stories...

How to reform education: The answer song

AZ Elections Director ‘goofs’ and derails Pearce recall effort

Interesting reading: Healthcare reform to toll roads to wing-nuts

In Mexican American Studies debate, Tucsonans need less spin and more truth

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

More news on McClung's ties to extremist groups

Over on my Tucson Citizen blog, I have posted several stories about CD7 Republican Congressional challenger Ruth McClung and her ties to extremist and often blatantly racist groups who are fundraising and endorsing her.

Will the real Ruth McClung please stand up? first brought to light her endorsement by the right wing Republican Majority Campaign and the Grover Norquist TV ad on her behalf.

The sequel: Will the real Ruth McClung please stand up? (part 2) continues the discussion of her ties to Norquist and Sarah Palin. Even though McClung signed the Norquist pledge and spouted his soundbites at the CD7 debate, she claims not to know who he is.

Desperately seeking ‘Republican Majority Campaign’, signed RM further delves into the shadowy Republican Majority Campaign and its racist ties. The title is a take-off on the 1980s cult classic "Desperately Seeking Susan" where bored housewife (Rosanna Arquette) places a newspaper ad to find her wild-child friend, Susan, (played by Madonna). Like the bored housewife, McClung want to play on the wild side with the RMC.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

CD7 debates: fiery ideology vs ideas and facts

Last night's Congressional District 7 public debate revealed the stark contrast between the candidates and their followers.

Here are 2 stories that I posted on my Tucson Citizen blog.

CD7 debate: Fiery ideology vs ideas and facts

Ruth McClung: Brought to you by the Republican Party Machine

The main blog link is here: Tucson Progressive.

Monday, October 11, 2010

More news on medical marijuana, Barbara LaWall, and prohibition

Here is a sequel to my earlier story about Pima County Attorney Barbara LaWall's crusade against Prop 203 which would legalize medical marijuana.

LaWall continues campaign against medical marijuana

That story and an anti-Prop 203 blog post also in yesterday's Tucson Citizen raised a number of comments about the origins of marijuana prohibition, so I posted this story today. It's amazing how many times in our history xenophobia has been used as a wedge issue to control the US population.

Alcohol and marijuana: The origins of prohibition

My new blog link on the Citizen is here: Tucson Progressive.

Friday, October 8, 2010

Goddard 'works it' in Tucson

Attorney General Terry Goddard knows that in order to beat Jan "beheadings!" Brewer in the race for governor of Arizona he has to win big in Pima County-- the one bright blue spot in a state dominated by that large red blob to the north.

Goddard has been everywhere in recent weeks. There was an impressive voter registration rally on October 4 with fellow Democrats on the UA mall, and this weekend there are back to back events.

Women for Goddard Rally and Movie at the Loft
Come to the Loft Cinema, hear Goddard speak and view the film Iron Jawed Angels, an amazing movie on the battle for the women's right to vote. (This is labeled as a women's rally, but I'm sure men can come also.)
What: Women Vote Rally
When: Saturday, October 9th from 10-11:30 am.
Where: The Loft Cinema, 3233 E Speedway Blvd.
For more info, please contact Erika Burkhart at (303) 514-3452.

Eastside Rally for Goddard
What: Eastside Rally for Terry Goddard hosted by City Council members Shirley Scott and Paul Cunningham
When: Saturday, October 9, 4-6 pm
Where: The Children's Outdoor Performance Area, 8123 E Poinciana (next to PCC East, north of Irvington, east of Pantano).
Come join us for food, music and show your support for Terry Goddard!
Please contact Max Torres at (520) 250-0473 or Pat Weidhoff at (520) 850-6755 for more information.

Goddard Got Art
The Goddard Got Art artist reception will be this Saturday. Goddard's campaign held a art competition. Come view the winners. This is the Second Saturday, so there will be loads of other things to do also. (If you're worried about parking, check out the Pennington Street Garage, by Cafe Poca Cosa. It's cheap or free for these events.)
When: Saturday, October 9, 5-7pm
Where: 1 E. Congress in downtown Tucson

17th Annual Pima County Democratic Party Honor Roll Gala
If you're into somewhat expensive political dinners, come this event and hear keynote speaker, Henry Cisneros, former Secretary of Housing and Urban Development along with Goddard and State Senator Paula Aboud who will be the master of ceremonies.
What: Pima Democrats Honor Roll Gala, featuring Henry Cisneros and Terry Goddard
When: Saturday, October 9th at 12 pm. Registration begins at 11:30.
Where : University Marriot, 880 E 2nd St. Tickets are $75 ($65 for PCs and $50 for students). To purchase tickets, visit this Act Blue web link or call (520) 326-3716.

Cycling for Goddard
So, after that rubber chicken dinner at the Marriott on Sunday, join Goddard supporters Tuesday night for the community bike ride. We tried this last Tuesday, but that huge rain storm washed out our plans. We are calling on Goddard supporters to participate in the bike ride and show their support at the same time. We will be wearing lights and Goddard paraphernalia-- signs, t-shirts, bumper stickers-- to raise awareness. Barring bad weather (again), we plan do to this for each Tuesday night ride until the election on November 2.

Rumor has it that Connie Sanchez of Blondes for Brewer may even make an appearance at the art event and the cycling event. Is she switching sides? Come find out!
What: Tucson Community Bike Ride
When: Tuesdays, 7:30 pm
Where: in front of the Starbucks on University Blvd.

Goddard is workin' it in Tucson. Help him take back our state. Volunteer and vote!

Thursday, October 7, 2010

This is called not knowing what you are voting for

In case you can't read it, one of my messier neighbors has "Yes on 401, Fix City Government" sign in his front of his junk car.

This is a perfect example of not knowing what you are voting for.

You see... a few months ago the neighborhood association turned this particular neighbor-- among others-- into the city for violating the ordinances against tall weeds and grass and visible junk cars.

Should I tell him that even if Prop 401 passes, he'll still have to keep his yard cleaned up and cover-- or preferably ditch-- that junk car with the flat tires? (After all, even covered, it's an eyesore.)

Tucsonans can join the Rally to Restore Sanity or the March to Keep Fear Alive-- without leaving the Old Pueblo

I have been seriously jonesing to go to Washington, DC for the progressive rallies being held in October. After all I have a hybrid car and at least one person + 2 cattle dogs who would love to go on a road trip.

Problem is I also have a fulltime job and can't take 2 weeks off for the round trip.

Ever since I learned about these 3 rallies, I have been pining away to hear Ed Schultz, Jon Stewart, and/or Stephen Colbert address the teeming throngs of progressives on the mall in DC, but alas...

Now, thanks to the ingenuity and marketing savvy of the Hotel Congress, Tucson progressives can enjoy the Rally to Restore Sanity and/or the March to Keep Fear Alive without leaving town. The rallies begin at 9 a.m. on 10-30-10.

Personally, I think they should secure Governor Jan Brewer and Pima County Attorney Barbara LaWall as keynote speakers for the Keep Fear Alive rally.

For Restoring Sanity...hmmm...definitely there are no Arizona Republican politicians who could address a rally with that title-- especially since Stewart called Arizona the "meth lab of democracy". Maybe Dave Ewoldt or Andrew Weil?

Here is a link to the Tucson rally and a link list of other states and cities that are having rallies. And, of course, in case you're not already distracted enough, you can follow it all on facebook and Twitter.

Big money could bring the end of life as we know it

Are you scared yet? Should I go on?

These right-wing puppets (and-- thanks to the Roberts' court-- the corporatists and secretly-funded big-money groups behind them) want to end life as we know it in the United States of America. They don't want to take us back to the Bush era policies or the Contract for America.

With no Social Security, no healthcare safety net, no minimum wage, and, of course, no unions-- they want to take us back to the dawn of the Industrial Revolution, when people of all ages, including small children, slaved -- literally-- in factories and sweat shops for meager wages. If you were sick, old, or poor, it was your family's responsibility to take care of you. No family? Tough luck, you're on your own.

How could these ideas have gained so much popularity? Is it the sheer power of the moneyed forces behind the Tea Party-- like the John Birch Society Koch brothers or secretly-finded groups like Karl Rove's American Crossroads, which spent $3.5 million last week? All of this money + 24/7 yellow journalism courtesy of FOX News is trying to squash the progressive advances of the Obama Administration.

Here's some background on the origins of these ideas from The Billionaires Bankrolling the Tea Party by Frank Rich or the New York Times.

When David Koch ran to the right of Reagan as vice president on the 1980 Libertarian ticket (it polled 1 percent), his campaign called for the abolition not just of Social Security, federal regulatory agencies and welfare but also of the F.B.I., the C.I.A., and public schools — in other words, any government enterprise that would either inhibit his business profits or increase his taxes. He hasn’t changed. As Mayer details, Koch-supported lobbyists, foundations and political operatives are at the center of climate-science denial — a cause that forestalls threats to Koch Industries’ vast fossil fuel business. While Koch foundations donate to cancer hospitals like Memorial Sloan-Kettering in New York, Koch Industries has been lobbying to stop the Environmental Protection Agency from classifying another product important to its bottom line, formaldehyde, as a “known carcinogen” in humans (which it is).

Tea Partiers may share the Kochs’ detestation of taxes, big government and Obama. But there’s a difference between mainstream conservatism and a fringe agenda that tilts completely toward big business, whether on Wall Street or in the Gulf of Mexico, while dismantling fundamental government safety nets designed to protect the unemployed, public health, workplace safety and the subsistence of the elderly.

Yet inexorably the Koch agenda is morphing into the G.O.P. agenda, as articulated by current Republican members of Congress, including the putative next speaker of the House, John Boehner, and Tea Party Senate candidates like Rand Paul, Sharron Angle, and the new kid on the block, Alaska’s anti-Medicaid, anti-unemployment insurance Palin protégé, Joe Miller. Their program opposes a federal deficit, but has no objection to running up trillions in red ink in tax cuts to corporations and the superrich; apologizes to corporate malefactors like BP and derides money put in escrow for oil spill victims as a “slush fund”; opposes the extension of unemployment benefits; and calls for a freeze on federal regulations in an era when abuses in the oil, financial, mining, pharmaceutical and even egg industries (among others) have been outrageous.

The Koch brothers must be laughing all the way to the bank knowing that working Americans are aiding and abetting their selfish interests.
Has the country gone mad? Do the small guv'ment Tea Partiers think their Social Security and Medicare will be funded, while everyone under 65 will be thrown to the wolves? Fat chance. Tea Partiers, after they have used you, they'll go after your Medicare-funded scooters next.

For a look at our future, check out this book from the past-- How the Other Half Lives-- or watch Walmart: the High Cost of Low Prices.

UPDATE, October 8: Diane Rehm's Friday News Roundup covers this story. (Diane, honey, mention my blog next time, OK?)

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Where's the diversity?

Is it coincidence, fate, or maybe poor planning on my part that I am spending 3 evenings in a row at the Pima County Democratic Headquarters this week?

The Pima Dems Executive Committee met last night; tonight Legislative District 28 (where my precinct is) met; and tomorrow I am making phone calls for Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords and MoveOn. (That's me and Gabby on election day 2008, when I was also making calls for her. Wasn't that a great day!)

What really struck me about last night's meeting-- besides the vote-- was the lack of diversity in the Pima County Democratic Party's upper echelon. When I made phone calls for Barack Obama in 2008, I was in the minority on most nights. Didn't the local Dems recruit any of those 2008 black and Hispanic phone bank volunteers or walkers to be precinct committee people?

I had planned to raise the lack-of-diversity issue at tonight's LD28 meeting, but with only 1 black campaign worker for Rodney Glassman (Hi, Zeke!) and 1 Polish Mexican, tonight's meeting was older and whiter than last night's meeting. (Not that there's anything inherently wrong with old white folks; these people are hard workers. And, besides, I plan to be an old white person someday.)

Yes, I know there is an African American Democratic Caucus. Great group of folks, but I don't see many of them in leadership positions. Actually, I only saw 1 last night.

This is a problem-- and a missed opportunity. Nationwide and statewide, the Republicans are alienating many groups and particularly people of color. The "energized" Republican base-- primarily Tea Partiers-- ranges from old white folks to white supremacists on the diversity scale. Obviously, that leaves a lot of people left out.

Come on, Democrats. Let's show everyone that we really do have a big tent that all of us can fit under. We need to bring these diverse populations into the fold-- not just for their vote but for their ideas, their energy, and their leadership.

I challenge the Arizona Democratic Party to make a concerted effort to recruit more diversity to the ranks of its precinct committee members between now and 2012. This will only make the progressive movement stronger. We can do this.