Saturday, February 26, 2011

Tonight on the Alexander & Goldman Show: CEI experts on the lightbulb ban, EPA regulations and Wisconsin unions

Watch the archived show here. Join Brian Symes and myself on the Alexander & Goldman Show from 6-7pm AZ/MST as we talk with some experts from the Competitive Enterprise Institute. Myron Ebell will discuss the incandescent lightbulb ban and his petition to rescind it at FreeOurLight.org and EPA regulations of greenhouse gas emissions (which is being done to surreptitiously get around Congress's refusal to pass Cap and Trade), and during the second half of the show Timothy Lee will discuss the Wisconsin unions.

Please call in at 602.508.0960 and let us know your thoughts. Tune in locally to KKNT 960 AM or listen live online at KKNT960.com.  


Last week's show discussing the revolution in Egypt, and the left's attempts to take God out of our public schools is archived here




Friday, February 25, 2011

Having a great time at the Tea Party Patriots convention this weekend

Am helping out in the booth for Sunrise Data Services with Bob Adney. SDS provides donor services and data management for tea parties and other political organizations looking for help with fundraising, email list management, etc. Some of their clients include Tea Party Patriots, Sarah PAC and Young Americans for Freedom.



Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Lawyers: Don't get in trouble for using social media, take my CLE tomorrow

Read how lawyers have gotten into trouble using social media here. There are all kinds of ethical pitfalls for lawyers who delve into social media due to ethics rules.

Should you facebook friend a judge?

Can you blog about your clients if you disguise their names?

Can you add an opposing party or a potential juror as a friend on facebook in order to spy on them?

Can you solicit clients on Twitter?

Does your blog need advertising disclaimers?

If you answer a question on a social networking site that someone from another state asked, does that constitute the unauthorized practice of law if you are not licensed to practice law there?


Attend my seminar tomorrow to find out the answers to these and other ethical dilemmas.

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Another reason why you need to take my social media seminar/CLE for lawyers and other professionals

Do you know the easiest and cheapest and fastest way to set up a website that people will find easily, which can then link back to your practice, hobby, or personal page? I just set up a free website in less than half an hour, using practically no HTML or coding skills, that will now capture searches from lawyers in Arizona looking up Continuing Legal Education. The total cost to me? $12 for the domain name ArizonaCLEforLawyers.com. I'm not hiding any extra costs either, there is no cost now or in the future for this website. If you're a solo practitioner or small firm, you NEED THIS SEMINAR to discover secrets like this.  Don't pay an overpriced programmer thousands or even hundreds of dollars to create and maintain a website for you. Register for my seminar now and learn all of my inside secrets.

Friday, February 18, 2011

Rep. David Schweikert rips liberal Ohio Congresswoman on House floor over federal land taxes

This 60-second clip is worth watching, one of David's first speeches on the House floor as a Congressman.

Shane from Sonoran Alliance hosting Alexander and Goldman Show Saturday night

The archived show is available here. Join Shane Wikfors tomorrow night as he guest hosts on KKNT-960 AM (Phoenix) from 6-7 PM. He will be speaking with Chad Willems from Summit Consulting about the US Senate race here in Arizona as well as Steve Slivinsky from the Goldwater Institute about the recent "jobs" bill and Arizona's budget.

Arizona Latino Republicans will also call into the show to discuss the Arizona Republic's treatment of the word "anchor babies." 

Please call in at 602.508.0960 and let us know your thoughts. Tune in locally to KKNT 960 AM or listen live online at KKNT960.com.  

Anchor Babies and the Attempt to Silence Critics of Illegal Immigration

 Attempts to silence use of the term "anchor baby" are nothing more than an attempt to marginalize and silence anyone who disagrees with their view on illegal immigration: if you use the term you are racist and therefore your ideas are not worth listening to.
This is a response to an opinion piece in the Arizona Republic by James Garcia.
 Read the full article on Intellectual Conservative 
Read how the Arizona Republic censored use of Ronaldo Reagan's term "anchor baby" in the comments after the Republic article he was commenting after. 

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Buckley and Reagan fighting! (Cats, not the political leaders)

Monday, February 14, 2011

Social media is no longer "optional"

Social media now encompasses many aspects of our lives, and its overlap is continuing to expand. It can no longer be dismissed as a non-necessary "extra!" Register now for my social media seminar for lawyers and other professionals at RightNowSocialMedia.com.

Learn how to make your article the #1 Google News result for that topic

Within a few minutes after I posted an article I wrote about the Patriot Act on my website, it showed up as the #1 result in a Google News search for "Patriot Act." How did I do this? Part of my social media secret is including a photo next to the article; Google News likes photos. Learn inside secrets like these you won't get anywhere else by registering for my social media seminar on Feb. 24th (or watch the video online later).

Russell Pearce Legislative Alert Bills to be heard this week

Bill Alerts for week of February 14th thru 18th:
 Appropriations
The committee on Appropriations will meet at 2:00 pm on Tuesday, February 15, 2011 in Senate Hearing Room 109.

SB1308 and SB1309 use a Constitutional doctrine to make agreements with other states in order to protect our citizens and establish our sovereignty. No longer will the federal government be able to wrongfully and unconstitutionally interpret the Fourteenth Amendment. These two bills will allow Arizona to be a partner to all of the other states involved in this compact, help regain our country, and not incentivize illegal activity in our homeland.
SB1561 allows the legislature to do its job! SB1561 gives the legislature the authority to appropriate “noncustodial federal monies”. It is an authority that the legislature should have in order to keep our fiscal house in order and to make the decisions that our constituents elected us to do. It will bring transparency to your tax dollars that you deserve.
SCR1051 is a measure that will rein in spending measures that have no specified funding source. Why are we funding programs that do not have funds? This measure will take the handcuffs off the legislature and allows us to balance the budget and maintain programs that are truly funded while not expanding government that has not been paid for.

Banking and Insurance
The committee on Banking and Insurance will meet at 2:00 pm on Tuesday, February 15, 2011 in Senate Hearing Room 3.

SB1590 allows employers to pool together in order to bring down health insurance costs for their employees. It is the right thing to do. It brings down the cost of covering employees and brings access to more Arizonans by allowing employers the freedom to make the smart business decision.
SB1593 removes the federal barrier of interstate competition for health services. This bill allows the interstate purchase of health coverage. No longer will we allow the federal government to restrict competition and the free trade of business and the rights of consumers to purchase health insurance. This bill is intended to drive down costs and allow the free market to prosper to allow more people to purchase insurance. Obamacare is unconstitutional and ineffective. We are committed to drive down health care costs with free market approaches and common sense economical solutions.

Education
The committee on Education will meet at 2:00 pm on Monday, February 14, 2011 in Senate Hearing Room 3.

SB1209 creates transparency with our schools. It requires that with all other budgetary information school districts must post information of employee positions and salaries. School districts sometimes do not want you to know how much they are paying their bureaucrats, but no more! Transparency is crucial for our school systems to be efficient and productive. School bureaucrats are state employees like any other and deserve the same scrutiny.
SB1453 allows parents to have a say in what their children are learning. Parents have been continually blocked from making decisions about what their children are exposed to when material may be inappropriate. Parent’s rights have been diminished and we are committed to putting them back in the driver seat of raising their children.
SB1558 requires 25% of a superintendent’s performance pay plan to be based on the percentage of academic gain made by students compared to students in the highest ranking of the sixty largest districts in Arizona. This bill is imperative to hold school administrators accountable. 
  Finance
The committee on Finance will meet at 9:00 am on February 17, 2011 in Senate Hearing Room 1.

SB1316 is the Senate Republican Caucus solution to the deteriorating Public Safety Personnel Retirement System. (PSPRS) It is crucial that we have the support of all of you. It is aimed at actually reforming a broken system that is destined to eventually bankrupt the state if nothing is done.

Government Reform
The committee on Government Reform will meet at 9:00 am on Wednesday, February 16, 2011 in Senate Hearing Room 1.

SB1325 keeps labor unions out of politics! SB1325 would prohibit unions from using any portion of its dues or fees for political purposes.
SB1598 reforms regulatory authority that cities have abused. It takes a comprehensive review of regulations and is aimed and streamlining regulatory efforts.
SB1354 Photo radar prohibition
SB1410 places in statute and makes it clear the Sheriff is the Chief Law Enforcement Officer in each county.
SB1411 simply allows our elected officials to run their Office within the budget set by the Board of Supervisors, allows them to set their priorities, enter into contracts or agreements that furthers their Constitutional or Statutory duties and adds JP’s to the list of County Elected Officials.
SCR1035 makes it clear the English is our Official Language and prohibits government from printing materials in language other than English (other than the voting ballot as required under the Voting Rights Act)

Healthcare and Medical Liability Reform
The committee on Healthcare and Medical Liability Reform will meet at 2:00 pm on Wednesday, February 16, 2011 in Senate Hearing Room 1.

SB1357 adds integrity to our state Medicaid program by holding AHCCCS patients accountable for missed appointments, while bringing solvency to an already failing program.
SB1366 eliminates medical liability for physicians who perform free medical services without compensation. Allows doctors to feel free to volunteer their time without having the fear of being sued. This is another attempt to demonstrate that there are other ways to reform the healthcare industry.
SB1592 facilitates the Healthcare Compact. This Constitutional form of agreement between states is a tool that we can utilize to bring down healthcare costs and make effective changes to better the lives of Arizonans.

Judiciary
The committee on Judiciary will meet at 2:00 pm on Monday, February 14, 2011 in Senate Hearing Room 1.

SCR1034 alerts the federal government that we have the ability to nullify laws that congress passes that are outside the scope of our federalist system.

Happy Valentine's Day!











Saturday, February 12, 2011

Alexander & Goldman Show tonight: AZ sues the feds over immigration, who will replace Sen. Kyl, & the Planned Parenthood stings

Join Brian Symes and myself on the Alexander & Goldman Show from 6-7pm AZ/MST as we discuss Arizona's new lawsuit against the feds for costs due to their failure to enforce immigration laws. We'll discuss this with Rey Torres of the Arizona Latino Republicans, who joined in the SB 1070 lawsuit defending Arizona. Did you know that Arizona has received almost $3.7 million so far in donations to help defend itself against the lawsuit?


Next, we will discuss who might replace Senator Jon Kyl, who just announced he will not be running for reelection in 2012.


For the last part of the show, we will tell you what's been happening with the latest stings against Planned Parenthood, exposing that abortion mill for its willingness to perform abortions on underage girls who are abused as prostitutes.


Finally, we will discuss a new Social Media seminar/CLE we will be offering to attorneys and other professionals on February 4th, revealing all of our social media secrets. Lawyers will receive two credits, both ethics credits.

Please call in at 602.508.0960 and let us know your thoughts. Tune in locally to KKNT 960 AM or listen live online at KKNT960.com.  


Last week's show discussing the revolution in Egypt, and the left's attempts to take God out of our public schools is archived here




Friday, February 11, 2011

Ronald Reagan Centennial Event featuring Best-selling author James Strock

Time
Thursday, February 17 · 6:00pm - 9:00pm

LocationRevolver Lounge
7316 E. Stetson Dr.
Scottsdale, AZ

Created By

More Info
Politics on the Rocks is pleased to announce our Ronald Reagan Centennial Event featuring Best-selling author James Strock author of Reagan on leadership, former Reagan political intern Steve Nickolas, and former United States Congressman Barry Goldwater, Jr. This event will take place on Thursday, February 17th 6:00 PM at Revolver Lounge located at 7316 E. Stetson Dr. in Scottsdale, Arizona. We are also pleased to announce that... Sheriff Paul Babeu has been selected to receive the 2011 Politics on the Rocks Ronald Reagan Leadership Award for his service and leadership in Arizona. We would like to thank our marketing partners Gem Ray & Scottsdale Nights for all of their support! This is a free event and everyone is welcome to attend.

Best-selling author James Strock is the author of Reagan on Leadership: Executive Lessons from the Great Communicator, which is being released in a new Reagan Centennial edition later this month. Politics on the Rocks members will be able to purchase signed copies at the special discount price of $20 at the event. Jim is a longstanding supporter of Politics on the Rocks. He is a speaker, consultant and entrepreneur with wide experience in business and politics, including in the Reagan administration.

Steve Nickolas was assigned to assist then ex-Governor Ronald Reagan as a political intern in 1975 while attending Claremont Men’s College (now called Claremont McKenna College). Steve was a college sophomore who had already developed an extensive resume in California Republican circles having worked in a number of Southern California primary and political campaigns in 1974 (the election after Watergate). Steve also spent time working as a legislative aid in Sacramento in late 1974 through early 1975. Steve spent the better part of six months in part-time service to President Reagan as he started developing his plans for his run at the Presidency. Steve’s knowledge of grass roots campaign organizations in California and enthusiasm for the “Get Out The Vote” was of interest to the ex-governor. Steve was later assigned to assist then President Gerry Ford.

Barry Goldwater Jr. served as a United States Congressman from 1969–1983. He served on a number of committees, including Committee on Science and Technology, Committee on Public Works and Transportation, and the Joint Committee on Energy. His areas of expertise included energy, the space program, aviation and defense, and government procurement. He was on the committee that reviewed the disaster involving the space shuttle "Challenger." Barry authored and saw the Privacy Act of 1974 signed into law. He served on the privacy Commission that looked into privacy issues affecting the private and corporate sectors. This issue remains a matter of his concern as we move into a global electronic network and information systems. He was very instrumental in all facets of energy policy and research and development including authoring the Solar Photovoltaic Act. He has also been involved with organizations as diverse as the National Aeronautic Association, the National Wildlife Federation, and the Veterans of Foreign Wars of the United States. He is a Life Member of the American Numismatic Association. He is also looked upon as an expert concerning transportation matters.

Politics on the Rocks has committed to championing a different charity each month of the year. This month we would like to promote the "Run for Ryan House" at DC Ranch on Saturday, March 5, 2011. Launching from Market Street at DC Ranch, courses will wind through the community that lies at the base of the McDowell Sonoran Preserve in north Scottsdale. The event features four elements: Half Marathon, 10K, 5K and 1-Mile Family Fun Run. Turn by turn course information is now available! For more information, please click on this link:
http://ryanhouse.org/news-and-events/events-3/run-for-ryan-house-2011/

We look forward to seeing everyone on Thursday, February 17th 6:00 PM at Revolver Lounge!

Regards,

Politics on the Rocks
http://www.PoliticsontheRocks.com/

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

SPEAKER KIRK ADAMS UNVEILS SWEEPING PENSION REFORM

Highly-anticipated reforms combat generous giveaways to politicians, “double-dipping” by government entities

(Media availability today at 2 p.m.)

STATE CAPITOL, PHOENIX (Feb. 8, 2011) – House Speaker Kirk Adams unveiled a sweeping overhaul of the state’s financially unstable pension system today that aims to stop generous giveaway to politicians and the practice of “double-dipping” by government entities. The overhaul seeks to create a more financially sound system for the employees who are counting on the fund for their retirement and lowers the burden on taxpayers.

“We must protect those Arizonans who are counting on our pension system – the teachers, firemen and law enforcement officers – by seeking out and destroying the abuses that are draining and bankrupting their retirement,” Adams said. “Our pension system is a ticking time bomb ready to explode. If we don’t address its financial instability with these reforms, hard-working Arizonans will be on the hook and at the mercy of ever increasing liabilities. Meanwhile, our state’s bravest will face an uncertain retirement.”

Last year, the Arizona Chamber Foundation blew the whistle on a problem that threatens to cost Arizonans billions. In 10 years time, our state petition program’s nearly $5 billion surplus has turned into a more than $10 billion deficit – much of it a result of benefit increases, government growth and rising salaries that we simply cannot afford.

Meanwhile, the Arizona Republic has detailed a number of abuses, including “double-dipping” practices where government entities are hiring back early retirees and draining money from the pension. (Read the full series here: http://www.azcentral.com/news/articles/2010/11/12/20101112arizona-pension-funds.html)

As the Republic has reported, Arizona ’s four statewide pension systems lack sufficient funds to pay for current and future pension liabilities.

Speaker Adams has taken the lead on this issue, opting out of his own state pension before his vesting date and giving up at least $260,000 in potential income. The Republic said Adams “deserves kudos” for this “act of integrity.” The National Taxpayers Union gave Adams a “Profile in Taxpayer Advocacy” for his efforts.

On Monday afternoon, Speaker Adams introduced HB 2767, his highly-anticipated reform package.

“This fight won’t be easy – and it will be a fight,” Adams said. “The powerful unions and out-of-state interests that would rather stick with the status quo and put our state workers at risk will recycle the same old scare tactics and threats. But as leaders, we must have the guts to stand up, do what’s right and reform this system before it’s too late. And I’m prepared to lead the charge.”

The Speaker’s seatmate, Representative Justin Olson, will play a major role in guiding this legislation through the House and ensuring its passage. Rep. Olson is co-sponsoring HB 2726 with Speaker Adams.

Speaker Adams ’ reform package includes the following elements:

  • Deprives elected officials and judges of their generous plan and treats them like everyone else by removing both their early retirement eligibility and the ability to retire after 20 years service without hitting the retirement age. Additionally, the reform package sustainably reduces the retirement multiplier for elected officials to the same standard applied to all other state employees.
  • Ends the potential for “double-dipping” by forcing employers like cities and school districts to make payments into the pension trust when they rehire retirees.
  • Completely eliminates the current point system for new hires that combines age and years of service, replacing it with a set retirement age.
  • Repeals the Deferred Retirement Option Plan, or DROP, which lets workers receive lump-sum cash payouts for up to five years of service.
  • Repeals the Cost of Living Adjustment Plan, or COLA, which provides generous permanent benefit increases.
  • Moves towards a 50-50 contribution system with employee increases and employer decreases until the match is achieved.
  • Requires a study by the Board of Investment about the feasibility and cost of moving towards a 401k-style defined contribution plan.


To see today’s Arizona Republic story on the reforms, go here:http://www.azcentral.com/news/articles/2011/02/08/20110208arizona-bill-pension-reform.html

For a detailed breakdown of all the proposed changes, see attached document.

The Speaker will be available today immediately after floor session, at approximately 2 p.m., to discuss this legislation further with members of the media.

To schedule interviews or to receive a full briefing of the package, please contact Daniel Scarpinato at 602-926-3233 or dscarpin@azleg.gov


Pension Design Reform 2011

Current Law
Reform
ASRS Return to Work:
>20hrs/20wks Rule – resume active status.
True change in position – can collect pension.
Another system – can collect pension.
Terminated employment for 12 months and return – can collect pension.
Returns to work as teacher after 12 months – can collect pension.

Return to Work Changes
HB2027 (July 2012 effective date).
Alternative Contribution Rate charged to ASRS employer when hiring retired ASRS member, after 12 months.
ASRS Normal Retirement Eligibility:
Age 65
Age 62 and 10-yrs of service
Any combination of age and service totaling 80 points or 85 points, if hired post July 2011.

Change Normal Retirement Eligibility
(Hired post July 2011 effective date).
Age 65
Age 62 and 10-yrs of service.
*Remove point system
4-Systems Permanent Benefit Increases (COLAs):
Up to a 4% increase contingent on variables within each system.

Repeal COLAs
(General effective date).
Repeal all COLAs in each system
EORP Normal Retirement Eligibility:
Age 65 and 5-yrs of service
Age 62 and 10-yrs of service
20 or more yrs of service regardless of age.

Change Normal Retirement Eligibility
(Hired post Jan 2012 effective date).
Age 65 and 5-yrs of service
Age 62 and 10-yrs of service
EORP Early Retirement Eligibility:
Any age and 5-yrs of service.

No Early Retirement
(Hired post Jan 2012 effective date).
No early retirement eligibility
EORP Retirement Multiplier:
4% × member’s average yearly salary × yrs of service.
Change Retirement Calculation
(Hired post Jan 2012 effective date).
Graded multiplier (%) scale based on years of service:
10 to 19.99-yrs: 2.1%
20 to 24.99-yrs: 2.15%
25 to 29.99-yrs: 2.2%
30+ yrs: 2.3%

PSPRS - DROP:
After member attains 20-yrs of service, the member can elect to DROP up to 5-yrs. No member or employer contributions are paid to system during that period, member contributions go to member account plus interest.

Repeal DROP
Repeal DROP (effective Jan 2012). If you are not in DROP by date, you cannot DROP.  Members in DROP by date may continue to DROP.
3-PSPRS Systems Employee/Employer Contributions:
Members Fixed:    Employer:
PSPRS –  7.65%     20.89%  avg
CORP –   7.96%      8.75%   avg
(dispatcher)8.41%
EORP –   7%          17.42%(st/county) 29.79%(city)

Increase Member Contributions
(July 2011 effective date).
Increase member contribution rates by 1/5th each year for 5-yrs with corresponding employer decreases until matching contribution rate is achieved. 
Salary Benefit Calculation (PSPRS, CORP, EORP):
Highest average salary paid during 3 consecutive yrs within the last 10-yrs of service.  PSPRS is within last 20-years of service

Smooth Salary Calculation
(Hired post Jan 2012 effective date).
Highest average salary paid during 5 consecutive yrs within the last 10-yrs of service. PSPRS is within last 20-years of service.
Refund of Contributions (PSPRS, CORP, EORP):
From 5 to10-yrs of service, members are refunded a graduated portion of the employer contributions up to 100%, if member has 10-yrs of service.
No Employer Refunds
(Hired post Jan 2012 effective date).
Terminated members will no longer receive double their contributions.
Normal Retirement Eligibility (PSPRS & CORP):

PSPRS                     
20-yrs of service at any age
Age 62 and 15-yrs of service

CORP
20-yrs of service at any age
Age 62 and 10-yrs of service
Any combination of age and service totaling 80 points.  If dispatcher, 25-yrs at any age.
Change Normal Retirement Eligibility
(Hired post Jan 2012 effective date).

PSPRS
25-yrs of service
Age 62 and 15-yrs of service

CORP
25-yrs of service
Age 62 and 10-yrs of service



* Requires a Study of Defined Contribution Plan feasibility and cost.  The Board of Investment will complete the Study by Dec 31, 2011.


Monday, February 7, 2011

Christian Super Bowl Ads More Offensive Than Lurid Ads

Increasingly more risque Super Bowl commercials are being accepted to play during the game. At the same time, ads with a Christian message are flat-out rejected.

Read the entire article

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Tonight on the Alexander & Goldman Show: Egypt. Then what's going on in the public schools.

The archived show is now available here. Join Brian Symes and myself on the Alexander & Goldman Show from 6-7pm AZ/MST as we discuss the unrest in Egypt. We will fill you in what has been happening, then analyze whether Mubarak will step down soon, and whether the Muslim Brotherhood will take control and turn Egypt into an Islamo-fascist state. 

At the very beginning of the show we will have on Rey Torres, the Arizona Latino Republican Association's Spanish language media rep, to discuss the latest news with that organization, and the attempts to stop the Arizona state legislature from passing a birthright citizenship law.


For the second half of the show, we will look at the left's latest attempts to indoctrinate our children in the public schools. 


Finally, we will discuss a new Social Media seminar/CLE we will be offering to attorneys and other professionals on February 4th, revealing all of our social media secrets. Lawyers will receive two credits, both ethics credits.

Please call in at 602.508.0960 and let us know your thoughts. Tune in locally to KKNT 960 AM or listen live online at KKNT960.com.  


Last week's show discussing the recall effort against Senator Russell Pearce, and the left going after Christians, is archived here