Friday, May 25, 2007

An idiot in the AG's office, and how Arizona's Congressional delegation voted on HR 1252

Arizona Attorney General Terry Goddard has, infamously flaunted his ignorance regarding the economic mechanisms setting gas prices.

To quote a sample:

Gasoline retailers and their trade associations claim that gasoline stations must immediately raise their prices in response to a threatened supply disruption because they must raise enough money to pay for their next shipment of potentially higher priced fuel. They call this arbitrary and speculative behavior “replacement cost” pricing. Whatever the reason, gasoline retailers actually seemed to be competing to raise prices during the Katrina episode. I personally observed that as soon as one station posted higher prices, others in the area quickly matched it. To do otherwise, retailers told my Office, would be to risk being overrun by customers and pumped dry.

Yes, avoiding being pumped dry is what replacement-cost pricing is all about. If you could undercut another retailer and be sustainably flooded with customers--or at least get more--you would. That's the process in effect when gas prices "come down like a feather." Apparently Goddard has yet to hear of "competition".

Read the rest. It's funny in a sick way, and stands as evidence that the man doesn't have either the brains or the knowledge to be a responsible Attorney General. Ignorance-based prosecutions are as intolerable as malicious ones.

Arizona's House delegation had the opportunity earlier this week to show whether or not they, unlike Goddard, get it, and whether or not they'd vote on something either pointless or blatantly unconstitutional for the sake of political posturing. Here's how they voted on HR 1252:

Aye AZ-1 Renzi, Rick [R]
Nay AZ-2 Franks, Trent [R]
Nay AZ-3 Shadegg, John [R]
Aye AZ-4 Pastor, Edward [D]
Aye AZ-5 Mitchell, Harry [D]
Nay AZ-6 Flake, Jeff [R]
Aye AZ-7 Grijalva, Raul [D]
Aye AZ-8 Giffords, Gabrielle [D]

Flake's "Nay" is predictable, as are the ayes of Grijalva and Giffords.

I'll throw in the first dollar for a collection to send each "Aye" voter a copy of Gwartney et al's Common Sense Economics, preferably by some postal method involving a whack on the head.

Friday, May 04, 2007

Good ol' Russel Pearce

Courtesy of the troglo-conservatives at comes the latest zinger from arch-bigot Russell Pearce, a claim that "Illegals" don't have the right to peaceably assemble and petition the government for redress of grievances.

Presumption about the immigration status of May Day marchers aside, the claim is patently false, both by the plain language of Article 2 of the Arizona constitution and the Federal bill of rights, and based on numerous precedents such as INS v. Lopez-Mendoza.

One can't write Pearce off as an ignoramus. He is a liar, making such claims repeatedly to fan the nativist flames. He's had plenty of time to be set straight, and he continues. I repeat: Russel Pearce is a liar.

The claim that "'illegals' have no rights" is a popular right-wing myth, and as it continues to spread, the likelihood of a right-wing race riot increases. Pogroms are what happens when the notion that people have (de facto or de jure) no protection of law is added to their being objects of irrational hate. Men spreading such ideas do not deserve the honor of and are unfit for the responsibility of public office.