Addressing Election Integrity in Arizona for 2020 and Beyond

Estimated Reading Time: 3 minutes

Fresh off the heels of a ten-hour public forum in which several Arizona lawmakers and President Trump’s legal team—led by attorney Rudy Giuliani—discussed potential irregularities and fraud with the Presidential election results, State leadership is facing extreme pressure to hold a formal legislative hearing and overturn the certification of the 2020 elections in Arizona.

There are several key takeaways lawmakers and patriots alike should consider from the events that have transpired as we chart a path to move forward.

1. Confidence in our Election System is Precarious

The fact is approximately half of the American population has lost faith in our election system. This is a democratic crisis that left unattended will irreparably damage our republic.

Regardless of the scope or degree election fraud played in the outcome of the 2020 Presidential election, only a comprehensive review and debate on a state-by-state basis will uncover these facts and, more importantly, mend the broken fidelity between millions of voters and the promise of free and fair elections.

Calls for action by leaders such as Congressman Andy Biggs to conduct a full audit are appropriate and dire. As the states most under scrutiny – Pennsylvania, Michigan, Wisconsin and Arizona—move forward on the certification process, they owe it to the public to investigate every aspect of how the elections were executed and make these proceedings and findings available for public consumption. Full transparency is critical.

2. Election Fraud is Real

Election fraud occurs. It has been well documented. Whether that takes the form of holding raffles and giving away gift cards in exchange for votes in Nevada, ballot harvesting in North Carolina, or a Judge caught taking bribes to stuff the ballot box in Philadelphia, election fraud exists and is a real problem.

Yet despite decades of evidence, it has been irritating to watch the media, which trafficked absurd Russian collusion conspiracy theories, election “hacking” claims by the Clintons and lionized Stacey Abrams, now harrumphing anyone that raises concerns about voter fraud. Legacy media should be the last people questioning the credibility of election fraud concerns when they have zero credibility themselves.

So as the process moves forward, the Club believes the Trump campaign has a right to and should exhaust all legal remedies to investigate and review the results of the 2020 election.

3. Election Integrity Reforms are Needed

In the last few years, Arizona has taken some steps to reduce the more nefarious methods of voter fraud. A ban on ballot harvesting (which Democrats at the time claim didn’t exist), reducing the abuse of “emergency” voting centers and enhanced voter ID laws have improved the process.

However, Arizona still has work to do, and additional reforms must be prioritized by the legislature. Areas of reform include additional transparency and oversight on vote tabulation, Permanent Early Voter List (PEVL) fixes and enhanced scrubbing of our voter rolls to remove non-eligible voters from our lists.

Election integrity continues to be a priority for the Club and we support legislative efforts that improve the credibility, transparency and security of our elections. This year’s session will no doubt be ripe for many of these reforms that have failed to pass in recent years.

4. Conservatives Must Continue to Fight

Arizona has some work to do to improve our elections systems. However, concerns over election fraud cannot be used as an excuse to not engage politically or ignore that Democrats have made gains in the state. The thinning Republican majorities at the legislature have not been garnered through vote rigging. Irrespective of the 2020 election outcome, our focus must be on building our movement and growing our numbers so that we can win outside the margin of cheating.

And above all else, we MUST continue to fight. Right now, Donald Trump’s campaign team is in Georgia to help Kelly Loeffler and David Purdue win their races and retain the Senate Majority. In fact, Donald Trump himself is planning a visit to the state this weekend, despite concerns over voter fraud. If Trump is not throwing in the towel, then neither should conservatives.

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This Blog from the Arizona Free Enterprise Club was originally published on December 4,  2020 and is republished with permission. The opinions expressed may not necessarily reflect the views of The Prickly Pear or of our sponsors.

BREAKING: Arizona’s Legislative Leaders Call For Audit of Maricopa County Dominion Election Software and Equipment

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Arizona’s legislative leaders are now calling for an audit of Maricopa County’s Dominion election software and equipment.

“Senate President Karen Fann and Speaker of the House Rusty Bowers today called an independent audit of the Dominion software and equipment used by Maricopa County in the 2020 General Election. The two leaders, along with incoming Senate Government Chair Michelle Ugenti-Rita and House Majority Leader Warren Petersen, had numerous phone calls with members of the Maricopa County Board of Supervisors,” a press release from the Arizona Legislature said.

“A significant number of voters believe that fraud occurred and with the number of irregularities it is easy to understand why. Especially concerning are the allegations made surrounding the vendor Dominion.”

Maricopa County is where the largest number of fake Joe Biden ballots appeared with help of Dominion voting machines.

This article was originally published on December 4, 2020. Continue reading at The Gateway Pundit.

Mail-in Ballots: The Road to a Fraudulent Election

Estimated Reading Time: 3 minutes

The Trump campaign post-election efforts to detect fraud and possibly reverse the election results were doomed to failure. In retrospect, their only hope was to block mail-in voting before it spread.

Democrats learned in 2018 how to use mail-in voting to their advantage. They were dead set on a repeat performance.

The bipartisan Carter-Baker Commission had warned back in 2005 that “absentee ballots remain the largest source of potential voter fraud “. Public health officials and election experts broadly agreed that Covid was not a barrier to conducting safe in-person elections. But it did not matter.

There were no arguments that could prevail against the relentless movement to establish mail-in elections. The proponents knew exactly what they were doing and why.

Mail-in ballots, sent to voters with no legitimate obstacle to voting in person, have become a far more serious threat to election integrity than the absentee ballots which concerned Carter-Baker. So, it was no surprise when election results shifted dramatically during ballot counting as the mail-in votes came in. Here is the take home from 2020: it is humanly impossible to conduct a secure election with mail-in ballots.

The obvious key to obtaining an honest vote count is ballot security. Time tested protocols for normal in-person voting established a chain of evidence. At no time is an official ballot, once printed, out of the control of an accountable authority until the vote is counted. Each voter is verified at the polls and each ballot is cast in secret without interference.

All the safety checks go out the window with mail-in voting. By traditional standards, every mailed ballot is a security breach. It is unknown and unknowable what happens to that ballot once it is mailed.

Elections officials in Arizona and elsewhere crowed about what a great job they had done and how little or no fraud was committed. But they missed the point. Mail-in fraud is invisible to them, unless they’re willing to dig for it, which they are not.

The Trump team and others readily found evidence of both massive petty and systemic fraud everywhere. With the new methodology in place, there are multiple cases of ridiculously high registration counts and turnout rates. Voters cast multiple ballots, dead people, felons and noncitizens voted, there were computer “glitches” with runs of votes almost all for the same candidate and bags of uncounted ballots. Fraud was seeping out of every pore.

We know that mail-in voting enabled family members to “help“ grandma vote, delivered ballots that were bought or exchanged for gifts, allowed ballots that were mailed incorrectly to be counted anyway and promoted all the other irregularities unique to mail-in voting.

Signature verification is the go-to safeguard for fraudulent submissions but it is a porous sieve. Even conscientious poll workers have difficulty reliably matching signatures which can change in appearance. There are numerous and widespread instances of improper or absent verification procedures.

One investigator reportedly signed and mailed in nine falsely signed ballots, eight of which were accepted. Moreover, signature verifications cannot be reviewed once the secret ballot is removed and separated from the envelope.

The almost insurmountable challenge in mitigating mail-in fraud is that it is not only difficult to detect, but it occurs mostly in multiple small incidents. To obtain relief, each of them must be separately identified, investigated and prosecuted in a short time window.

Campaigning is hard and expensive. Stealing mail-in votes is far easier. We may never know for sure how much fraud there was in this election or whether it was enough to change the outcome.

But we do know that somewhere between 70% to 80% of Americans believe there was substantial corruption, an alarming level of distrust in a democracy. Voting is the lifeblood of government by the consent of the governed. Mail-in voting injects a toxic level of uncertainty into the process

If fraud, corruption and widespread cynicism become the new normal, America will be permanently destabilized. The days of working together for the common good and peaceful transitions of power will be over.

Mail-in voting leads to inevitable, undetectable and irreversible fraud. We will never have transparent, honest elections Americans can believe in until we restore ballot security.

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Thomas C. Patterson, MD is a retired Emergency Medicine physician, Arizona state Senator and Arizona Senate Majority Leader in the ’90s. He is a former Chairman, Goldwater Institute.

Arizona Lawmakers Call for Resolution to Hold Back Electoral College Votes

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At a public hearing in Arizona with select members of the state legislature and members of President Donald Trump’s legal team, lawmakers called for their colleagues to support an upcoming resolution that would delay the release of the state’s Electoral College votes.

Arizona state Rep. Mark Finchem told reporters during the Nov. 30 hearing that they hope to have a resolution “within the next 24 to 48 hours.” The state holds 11 Electoral College votes.

“We are clawing our Electoral College votes back, we will not release them,” Finchem said. “That’s what I’m calling on our colleagues in both the House and Senate to do—exercise our plenary authority under the U.S. Constitution.

“There is a legal brief out there that says we are not tethered to state statute when it comes to this one question.”

According to Finchem, the move would be easy to make and would be legally binding.

“A simple majority can call the House and Senate back, and in a day can pass a resolution and cause those electoral votes to basically be held,” he said. “And it is binding—I’ll see y’all in court.”

In total, nine Republican state lawmakers attended the meeting, which was held at a hotel in downtown Phoenix. They had requested permission to hold a formal legislative hearing at the state Capitol but were denied by the Republican House speaker and Senate president, according to The Associated Press.

Trump’s attorneys Rudy Giuliani and Jenna Ellis, alongside witnesses, appeared in front of members of the Arizona Legislature alleging that considerable voter fraud occurred in the state. They also pushed for the Republican-majority state House and Senate to hold a vote on the certification of the election.

During the hearing, a cybersecurity expert said the user manual for Dominion Voting Systems machines guides users on how to connect to the internet, and that the machines, used by multiple states, were connected to the internet during the election.

“The Dominion suite user manual is about an inch and a half thick. My team went back through the user manual and looked at all the instances where in the user’s manual, it tells operators to connect the ethernet cords to the router, and it is, the systems are connected to the internet,” said Phil Waldron, a cybersecurity expert and retired Army colonel.

“Our teams looked at spirographs on the Dominion network on Election Day and showed the increased web traffic, internet traffic on Election Day for Dominion servers.

“In a nutshell, these systems are not what you’ve been told, if you’ve been told anything…

Continue reading this article at The Epoch Times.

Reality and the Narrative

Estimated Reading Time: 3 minutes

This article was originally published in American Greatness on November 28, 2020.

Oscar Wilde was such a card. Sitting for his viva voce examination in Greek, he given a passage to translate from one of the Passion stories in the New Testament. He started in and was barreling along fluently. At some point, one of the examiners interrupted, noting that he was satisfied by Wilde’s performance and that he could stop. Wilde ignored him and kept at it. The examiner interrupted again. “Really, Mr. Wilde, you may stop now. It is clear that you know the Greek.” “Oh please let me continue,” Wilde is supposed to have responded. “I want to see how it ends.”

Yuck, yuck, yuck. Who knows whether the story is true? I like to think it is. It’s not that I believe Wilde was ignorant of the plot of a Gospel story. He knew how it ended all right. But I admire the insouciance of his response.

Many people think the world is in a position akin to Wilde’s with respect to the 2020 presidential election. We’re all assumed to know how it ended. Joe Biden won. Any demurral on that score is put down to feigned ignorance, attempted cleverness, or petulant perversity.

After all, the Associated Press called the election for Joe Biden a couple of weeks ago. Other news agencies, from the Wall Street Journal and Fox News to CNN, the New Woke Times, and the Washington Post were right there on cue, hailing him the winner. Time, the former news weekly, devoted its cover to Joe Biden, “46th President of the United States.” Twitter was on the case, adding little warning messages to tweets about the election it didn’t like, suspending the accounts of people whose opinions it disagreed with, throttling the ability of those who dissented to broadcast their dissent. Who knows what Google and Facebook are doing with their search results. Some secrets are too deep for the light of day.

And that is my point. The strongest argument for Biden’s victory is not the vote tally. It is the monolithic narrative, pumped up like one of those inflatable play castles at a child’s birthday party. With every passing day, that narrative becomes more boisterous, more assertive, more uncompromising. It is a collective primal scream, emitted with eyes shut and ears plugged.

There is a problem for the narrative, however. Or more to the point, there are 73 million problems. A major concession in the Biden-won-give-it-up-narrative is revealed by the hawkers of the “Unity Now” meme. Let us all come together as one nation, under Joe, and reassert the American normality that has been so sorely missing under the despotic reign of Donald Trump.

No. No, that’s not going to fly, and not only because of the snarling viciousness that attended Donald Trump and his entire administration from the moment he was elected until now. Granted, Democrats are masters of hypocrisy. I will give them that. Brazenness is part of the formula. They are utterly unembarrassed by double standards. Indeed, they glory in them…

Continue reading this article at American Greatness.

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Roger Kimball is editor and publisher of The New Criterion and the president and publisher of Encounter Books. He is the author and editor of many books, including The Fortunes of Permanence: Culture and Anarchy in an Age of Amnesia (St. Augustine’s Press), The Rape of the Masters (Encounter), Lives of the Mind: The Use and Abuse of Intelligence from Hegel to Wodehouse (Ivan R. Dee), and Art’s Prospect: The Challenge of Tradition in an Age of Celebrity (Ivan R. Dee).

USA Today & Facebook Use Slanderous “Fact Check” to Suppress Facts About Illegal Voting By Non-Citizens

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This article was originally published by JustFactsDaily on November 24, 2020

A “fact check” by USA Today is defaming a Ph.D.-vetted study by Just Facts that found non-citizens may have cast enough illegal votes for Joe Biden to overturn the lawful election results in some key battleground states. The article, written by USA Today’s Chelsey Cox, contains 10 misrepresentations, unsupported claims, half-truths, and outright falsehoods.

Furthermore, Facebook is using this misinformation to suppress the genuine facts of this issue instead of honoring its policy to “Stop Misinformation and False News.” Compounding this malfeasance, a note at the bottom of Cox’s article states that USA Today’s “fact check work is supported in part by a grant from Facebook.” 

#1 Dr. Glen’s Credentials

Starting with the most simplistic falsehood in Cox’s piece, she impugned the character of Dr. Andrew Glen, a Ph.D. scholar who specializes in data analytics and who examined Just Facts’ study and found that it “provides a credible data analysis that supports a strong hypothesis of non-citizens having a significant effect on this election.”

Cox did this by claiming that “though he is attributed as a professor emeritus at the United States Military Academy, an ‘Andrew Glen’ did not appear in a search result on the website for the United States Military Academy, West Point. Glen attended the school as a student, according to his LinkedIn profile page.”

That statement reveals that Cox and her editor were ignorant of the fact that a professor emeritus is one who has “retired from an office or position.” Thus, Dr. Glen would not appear on the webpage of current faculty to which she linked.

Had Cox conducted a proper search, she would have found that West Point’s website lists Glen among a group of professors who wrote a reference work for its Department of Mathematical Sciences.

Cox could have also found proof of Glen’s professorship at West Point via a peer-reviewed journal, an academic book that he coauthored on the topic of computational probability, or the website of Colorado College, where Glen currently teaches.

After reading what USA Today published about Dr. Glen, current West Point adjunct professor Dr. Joseph P. Damore wrote:

I can personally attest to the fact that Andrew Glen, COL USA, ret. was an Academy Professor at West Point. I know, because I was there with him.

And Ms. Cox, to imply that an Iraq war vet, a graduate of West Point, and a retired Colonel from the U.S. Army is somehow lying about his credentials is so egregiously offensive, that it demands your apology.

Instead of an apology, USA Today altered the article 18 hours after publication to remove this attack on Glen without issuing a correction. This is a breach of journalistic ethics that require reporters and media outlets to “acknowledge mistakes” and explain them “carefully and clearly.”

#2 Dr. Cook’s Credentials…

Continue reading this article at JustFactsDaily

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This column from JustFactsDaily.com is republished with permission. ©All rights reserved. The opinions expressed may not necessarily reflect the views of The Prickly Pear or of the sponsors.

 

The Deficit Myth – Modern Monetary Theory and the Birth of the People’s Economy: A Review

Estimated Reading Time: 6 minutes

Professor Stephanie Kelton, an advisor to leading Democrats and the Biden campaign, has written the Deficit Myth: Modern Monetary Theory and the Birth of the People’s Economy, a highly readable explanation of Modern Monetary Theory (MMT). Replete with frequent references to Sesame Street and Spider Man, it is just the work needed to inform the young Social Justice Warrior.

The key is the subtitle, the Birth of the People’s Economy. MMT is just the means to get to a “people’s economy” that “cares” about the environment and achieving income equality. Naturally, her definition of justice is assumed to be THE one and only definition.

MMT is not really a theory or is it new. It is more a clever accounting exposition of the plumbing of the “payments system,” the complex web tying fiscal and monetary players together. This includes key components such as the fiscal budget, the Federal Reserve, primary bond dealers, the commercial banking system and the credit markets.

It is not new because much of the work is old, dating back to a 1905 book by German socialist Friedrich Knapp, and neo-Keynesian economist Abba Lerner and his “functional finance” of the 1940s.

MMT makes multiple key assumptions and they are sweeping in their importance:

Government makes money. All money is derived from law.

A country that achieves “monetary sovereignty”, through a pure fiat currency, required for use to pay taxes and does not borrow in foreign currency, cannot default. That nation can print whatever money it needs to pay its bills.

Money is spent into existence by the government first and neither borrowing or taxation is necessary to fund the government.

Government deficits do not matter. They can be, and should be, as large as possible to achieve “full employment.”

The proper interest rate is basically zero percent.

Huge government borrowing crowds out no one. We owe China nothing. Government debt is our asset.

The Federal Budget is different than household, corporate or state because these other entities cannot spend money into existence.

Government should provide employment for all at a reasonable wage. They will be put to work in the “cares” economy. Scant detail is provided for this massive undertaking.

There is very little commentary about the impact this will have on the dollar as the reserve currency of the world.

Inflation is not caused by an increase in the money supply, but largely resource constraint. This assumption is hedged though, as we will shortly see. This assertion is among the most controversial because since 1870, there has been almost an 80% correlation of inflation to growth in the money supply. The battles over the budget, PAYGO, debt ceiling fights, concerns about solvency in Social Security are all meaningless. Whew!

She is quite irritated with Conservatives and main stream Liberal economists that do not appreciate her theory. She writes as a new believer who has had a religious experience and can’t understand people who have not seen the light.

Unlike Margaret Thatcher’s rule that socialism fails because it runs out of other people’s money to spend, Kelton sees no restriction on government other than lack of real resources. Government should be really big and do a lot of things for social justice.

While many of the assumptions are worth disputing, in fact much of the MMT agenda is already being implemented through massive FED Quantitative Easing, interest rate suppression, huge deficits and direct payments to individuals and business because of the Lockdown economy.

But what is more important perhaps, is her positions completely reverse the American idea of limited government. She wants the Federal government to subsidize even further the states, which will erode their independence to a point of non-functionality in a Federal system. Since the states lack “monetary sovereignty”, they are constrained. But with enough magic money from the Federal government, they too will become unconstrained and dependent on Federal regulation to keep the money flowing.

The American Founders set up a system acknowledging the natural tendency of men to abuse power in government and set up an elaborate system to control those dangerous tendencies.  This involves separate branches of government, multi-layered Federalism, sound money, an independent judiciary and a written Constitution.

As a work of political economy, this book is dangerous and naïve.  Basically, it boils down to government can grow to any size, and any cost, and it can and should be paid for by currency creation.  Government is not here to preserve liberty, but to create equality and save the earth. The Constitution is not consulted.

While aware of inflation, she feels it is easy to deal with.  The purpose of taxes for her is not to raise revenue.  Taxes only serve to withdraw money from the system if inflation becomes a problem and to redistribute income.

If inflation becomes a problem, price indices will tell Congress when to raise taxes to “drain” money out of the system.  Here at least, we do see a tacit recognition that the quantity of money has something to do with its purchasing power.

The two big indicators for her are price indices and “slack” in the economy. Neither are easy to measure and sometimes government plays with the indices to get the result they want. In today’s jargon, that would be the CPI and capacity utilization.

Briefly the rub is what Hayek called, the knowledge problem.  Economic indicators are mostly lagging indicators. You already have the problem before the numbers tell you.  Secondly, they are often inaccurate.  That is why central planning has always failed.

How much do you raise taxes and inflict and on whom, to get X reduction in the inflation rate?  Kelton does not know, nor could Congress.  What Congress cannot know; it cannot act upon.

If inflation rises, Congress must then act by either cutting popular programs or increase taxes on some people or activities.  Where is the evidence that Congress does taxes well? The tax code is longer than the Bible.

There is a difference between Congressional knowledge and Congressional will.  Often, as an institution, it lacks both.

What if Congress is divided and can’t act at all?

The reason we have an independent central bank was to keep money creation as much as possible out of the political realm. She wants it squarely in the political realm, with all the attendant practical and historical risks.

She also lacks knowledge of the 1970s stagflation, where the country suffered from high unemployment, high inflation, low capacity utilization, and low economic growth. Keynesians told us at the time these conditions could not exist together.  She basically does the same thing.

When government intervenes in market economies, like raising taxes, people react by changing their behavior.  If people expect money to lose value, that changes their behavior towards spending, saving, and investing.

When government controls prices, wages, and interest rates, this sends out faulty signals resulting in misallocation of capital, which in turn creates booms and busts. That crisis then requires more and more government intervention.

Government then gets into a mode much like the game of Whack-a-Mole, doing things to stop people from reacting to its policies. That only works if you destroy their freedom. It is as Hayek put it, “the road to serfdom.”

Ironically, after people lose their freedom, the planned economy still doesn’t work because in the absence of a market, all decisions are merely political and divorced from real supply and demand.

Neither she or anyone else knows the precise amount of money to create, what interest rates should be and when and by how much money supply should be reduced. The Federal Reserve has been attempting such feats for some time and we have had plenty of violent business cycles as a result. Their management was supposed to smooth out the business cycle, remember?

She expects Congress that is full of blowhards and political charlatans to do this better? Yes, she does.

The word entrepreneur could not be found in the text or the index. She just assumes under the burden of her redistributionists policies that we will all be productive. Socialism on a national scale, and even the experiments with localized communes and kubutzes, all have failed because people don’t want to work for the collective, but for themselves and their families.

She confuses money with wealth. Money is not wealth, rather production is wealth. Money is simply the means to exchange wealth. This is a serious misunderstanding on her part.

She also believes that socialism is compatible with democratic government and personal freedom. This is a matter of heated debate. She is silent on this controversy.

Kelton has written a superficially convincing book on how to fund a socialist paradise.  But by making money solely a creature of politics, she places us in historical jeopardy.

No fiat money has ever held its value for long for the reason that political chicanery wins. Trust in politicians is not presently or historically warranted. Inflation is a form of default. Liberty and order have not been secure when people are wiped out by inflation.

However, this book is important because it is superficially convincing and likely will become the economic template for the new socialist Democratic Party. Her name is affixed to the radical Sanders-Biden Unity Task Force agenda.

You need to know their arguments and be prepared to answer them.

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Neland Nobel recently retired after 45 years in the financial services industry.

Arizona Prop 208 Passed: An Economic Rabbit Hole

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Arizona voters have some serious ‘splaining to do about the passage of Proposition 208, which raised education funds by boosting income tax rates by up to 98% for high income filers. How could this have happened?

Arizona schools have already received over one billion dollars in new sustainable monies over recent years, with more coming. More importantly, Arizona public schools, without receiving much credit, have become a remarkable success story.

Academic achievement gains for minority students are among the highest in the nation. Arizona charter schools excel in competitive rankings.

But voters apparently weren’t focused on educational outcomes. Prop 208 was marketed as a way to get other people, “the rich”, to pay the freight. Even though it’s one of the oldest tricks in the tax-and-spend playbook, Arizonans fell for it while voters in 17 other states thought better.

California voters rejected the removal of a cap on commercial property taxes that would have been the largest tax increase in state history. Voters in Illinois, Washington and Colorado were among those who defeated reckless taxation proposals.

Many may not know that Arizona once was a high tax state, with a 7% top rate for individuals and a 9% top rate for corporations. It was considered regionally uncompetitive until the 1990s when income tax rates were cut 35% and deductions were expanded.

The result, according to data from the Arizona Tax Research Association, was 145% more income tax revenue, inflation adjusted, in 2017 than in 1991, a rate of growth that exceeded population growth by 60%. More importantly, Arizona’s real GDP increased 176% from 1987 to 2016, while the US GDP grew 100.4%. Clearly, Arizona’s relatively low income tax rates produced abundant tax revenues while attracting capital and capitalists.

No longer. The strategy of sound tax policy is to establish broad-based, fair taxes with the lowest possible rate where they are the least likely to do economic harm. Prop 208 fails on all counts.

It’s singles out a small group and whacks them hard. Unfortunately, the sector being picked on includes many small business owners who pay their business taxes through the individual income tax system.

These just happen to be the entrepreneurs who drive much of the employment and economic growth in the state. A 100% tax rate increase for them will be enough to discourage further investment in Arizona businesses and to encourage those who can to file elsewhere. Arizona will rank in the top five nationally for income tax rates, a radical change sure to generate impacts which won’t be pretty.

The schools and teachers who have been promised salary increases aren’t so lucky either. Unfortunately for them, Prop 208 provides a highly volatile funding source, while teacher salaries require a stable, reliable revenue stream.

High wealth income taxes are notoriously subject to downturns in the business cycle. In 2008, following the great recession, tax collections from high income filers dropped 32% or $1 billion. School authorities who peg permanent salary increases to this income source are almost assuring a future crisis.

Although Republicans may have dodged a bullet, the election of 2020 continued the trend for Arizona voters to reverse their historical support for prudent, limited government. It’s not likely that Arizonans have change their mind. But who they are have changed.

Migrants from California and other failing states seem to have brought their old voting habits with them, oblivious to the reasons Arizona offers an attractive, affordable quality of life.

Here’s what the spenders can’t seem to grasp. Editorialists and interest groups will never run out of worthy spending projects that a more “enlightened” government would surely fund. But high tax rates, especially on those who don’t need it” is a giant rabbit hole.

Once you start down it, you’re sunk. Government benefits, once conferred, automatically become permanent entitlements which can never be reduced. Meanwhile, high tax rates seldom produce as much revenue as projected, due to tax avoidance behavior. Eventually, basic obligations like public safety and pension funding can’t be met. The answer is… higher taxes on the economically productive. They eventually get fed up and leave.

A growing number of state and local governments are facing economic desperation from this vicious cycle. Let’s hope Arizona isn’t among them.

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Thomas C. Patterson, MD is a retired Emergency Medicine physician, Arizona state Senator and Arizona Senate Majority Leader in the ’90s. He is a former Chairman, Goldwater Institute.

Cost of Lockdowns: A Preliminary Report

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In the debate over coronavirus policy, there has been far too little focus on the costs of lockdowns. It’s very common for the proponents of these interventions to write articles and large studies without even mentioning the downsides.

Here is a brief look at the cost of stringencies in the United States, and around the world, including stay-at-home orders, closings of business and schools, restrictions on gatherings, shutting of arts and sports, restrictions on medical services, and interventions in the freedom of movement.

Continue reading at: https:/www.aier.org/article/cost-of-lockdowns-a-preliminary-report

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This column from American Institute for Economic Research was published on 11/18/20 and is republished with permission. ©All rights reserved. The opinions expressed may not necessarily reflect the views of The Prickly Pear or of our sponsors.

Founded in 1933, the American Institute for Economic Research (AIER) is one of the oldest and most respected nonpartisan economic research and advocacy organizations in the country. With a global reach and influence, AIER is dedicated to developing and promoting the ideas of pure freedom and private governance by combining advanced economic research with accessible media outreach and educational programming to cultivate a better, broader understanding of the fundamental principles that enable peace and prosperity around the world.

 

The Founders Outsmarted the Presidential Election Fraudsters

Estimated Reading Time: 2 minutes

Who chooses the President of the United States?

This question is by no means rhetorical.  For example, the mass disinformation media has chosen Joe Biden as the winner of the 2020 election.  Many people liked this news, but I must disappoint them – the television broadcasters have, according to the U.S. Constitution, nothing to do with who will live in the White House for the next four years.

Maybe the Supreme Court chooses the President? No, the Constitution does not provide for this.  Could it be that the citizens of America choose their President? Following the U.S. Constitution, no.  So, who then chooses the President?

Before answering this question, let us note that, contrary to popular misconception, the President of the United States is not a representative of the American people.  State legislators and governors are representatives of the people, and at the federal level so are the members of the House of Representatives of the United States Congress.  (Currently, senators are also representatives of the people, but before the ratification of the 17th Amendment to the Constitution in 1913, they were appointed by state legislators).  So, who does the President of America represent?

The President of the United States of America, according to the Constitution, represents state legislators’ interests and no one else.

In general, the federal government’s structure in America reflects the numerous attempts of the Founding Fathers of the United States to introduce a system of effective state control over the federal government.  The fact is that the main difference between our country and all other countries, without exception, is that it was organized “from the bottom up,” that is, individual colonies voluntarily united against a common enemy – the British Empire.  All other “republics” on the planet were created “from the top down,” when the already existing provinces were graciously granted some independence by the already existing central government.

In building the American state, the fundamental principle was state control over the newly created federal power structure.  Therefore, from the Founding Fathers’ point of view, the federal government in Washington should consist of both representatives of the people (congressmen) and representatives of the state leadership – the federal President and senators.  This is how the institution of the Electoral College was invented and implemented.  The electors are appointed by the state legislatures, and they are the ones who elect the President of the country.

Continue reading at American Thinker

Gary Gindler, Ph.D., is a conservative columnist at Gary Gindler Chronicles and the founder of a new science: Politiphysics. Follow him on Twitter and Quodverum.