Tucson Progressive

Pamela Powers Hannley, a progressive voice for Arizona

Bruce Ash– gag me

Ok, Ok, I know that this is supposed to be the new age of civility, but every time I hear Republican Party mouthpiece Bruce Ash’s twisted logic and his “This I Believe” audio editorials on the radio, I just wanna puke. It’s amazing to me that he can sound soooooo sincere while he bends the facts to suit his ideology. (See, I’m trying to be be nice.)

Today on John C. Scott’s Show on The JOLT (1330 am), Ash was in rare form. I so tempted to call up and debate Ash but decided to do it here instead.

Ash: Congressional Republicans are committed to holding the line on the budget and stopping the “out-of-control” spending of the Obama Administration.

Me: Are these the same Republicans that insisted on keeping all of the Bush tax cuts before they would consider any other legislation last December? This fiscally irresponsible move will add trillions to the debt. And are these the same Republicans who gave Bush II everything he wanted with no regard to the cost? I think so.

Ash: Congressional Republicans will vote against raising the debt ceiling in March, but it’s no big deal. It’s fiscally irresponsible to raise to continue to raise the debt limit.

Me: When Newt Gingrich did this, he shut down the US government. This eventually blew up in his face, and the Republicans lost credibility. How could it be no big deal now? Also, since Gingrich’s fiasco in 1995, Republicans and Democrats have voted to raise the debt limit several times. After spending like drunken sailors for eight years under Bush II, are you saying that Republicans have now sobered up?

Ash: Today, House Republicans made good on their campaign promise to repeal of Obamacare because it costs too much, takes away patient choice, interferes with the doctor-patient relationship, and provides federal funding for abortion. Besides most Americans don’t like the plan. We’re just doing what the voters want us to. [I wish I could have witnessed Ash’s nose grow longer after spewing this string of Republican lies.]

Me: First of all, the Affordable Health Care Act saves the US money in the long term, and repealing it will add to the nation’s debt. This vote was no more than political theater, and it is diametrically opposed to your first statement that Republicans are committed to fiscal responsibility. Second and third, patients are free to choose their doctors, and they can keep their current doctor and plan or dump them if they want. Fourth, the healthcare reform law does not pay for abortions; if a woman has a plan that pays for abortions, she’s allowed to keep that plan and uses the services she has paid for. (It’s called patient choice.) Lastly, recent polls show that only 18% of Americans are against Obamacare, since millions more Americans now have healthcare insurance who didn’t and more provisions are taking effect. [Scott mentioned this, and Ash testily denied that polls show Americans now favor reform.] Also, earlier polls that showed most Americans didn’t like the plan included progressives who thought it didn’t go far enough + people who thought it went too far or just don’t like it because it was a Democratic Party victory.

[Scott asked Ash about gimmicks and fixes in Governor Jan Brewer’s proposed new budget and alluded to the need to raise revenues, but Ash would have none of that. Instead he went for the Sarah Palin’s folksy old saw about sitting around the kitchen table like a family.]

Ash: Like your family or mine, John, Arizona just has to sit around the kitchen table and figure out where to cut the budget to make ends meet. It’s just that simple. At the same time, Arizona has to be attractive to businesses in Arizona– to encourage them to stay– and attractive to businesses who may want to relocate. [Being attractive = cutting corporate taxes.] Arizona also should look at decreasing regulations.

Me: Arizona already has one of the lowest corporate tax rates in the country– 6.968%. Cutting corporate taxes when the state is in the midst of a fiscal crisis and has not balanced the budget for years is fiscally irresponsible. [Again, Bruce, see #1 above.] Businessmen in Tucson, as well as academics at Arizona State University, say that Arizona’s budget crisis can’t be fixed with budget cuts alone and that Arizona’s tax system is structurally unsound. The Governor’s proposal would only worsen this situation. Regarding making Arizona attractive to businesses, tax rates and lax regulations are not the only things that relocating business consider. They look at infrastructure, quality of life, and the education level of the workforce. Dramatic and repeated cuts to education at all levels will make Arizona less and less competitive. Cutting university funding also stifles innovation and research-based start-up businesses.

12 comments on “Bruce Ash– gag me

  1. Don
    January 19, 2011

    Pam, I’ll bet Bruce would love to debate you.  I asked him to participate in a debate with Anne Denogean, and he agreed.  (Anne did not).

  2. Pingback: Republican Party reorganization meeting: The other race for state party chair - Tucson Progressive

  3. fraser007
    January 19, 2011

    “I just want to puke”…thats OK I feel the vomit in my throat when I read the Three Sonorans rantings and your smug “Progressive” manure. Works both ways sweetheart.

    • leftfield
      January 20, 2011

      You are getting cranky again, fraser.

  4. recovering_progressive
    January 19, 2011

    Thank you for writing this article.  I am registering republican tomorrow.

    • Pamela Powers
      January 20, 2011

      Sorry, I forgot your side is undeterred by facts.

  5. Dennis Gilman
    January 20, 2011

    The GOP has a problem with reality.

  6. leftfield
    January 20, 2011

    I wonder just how many times this business of giving tax breaks to those in the upper classes (while asking the lower classes to pay for said breaks) has to fail to produce the desired result before it will be “consigned to the dust bin of history”.

    • Pamela Powers
      January 20, 2011

      No, kidding, 30 years of trickle-down economics + rampant deregulation crashed the savings and loan industry in the 1980s and Wall Street in 2008, created an economy based upon credit cards (instead of a living wage), caused a housing boom and bust cycle that rippled through financial markets worldwide, and plunged millions of Americans into unemployment, poverty, and home foreclosures,  BUT conservative ideologues like those controlling Arizona still cling to this failed economic dogma. Sigh…

      • JoeS
        January 20, 2011

        Sorry Pamela,  you cannot have a so called “living wage” when employers have bottomless pools of labor allowed by unsecured borders and unenforced laws.

      • Pamela Powers
        January 20, 2011

        Wow, Joe, we agree on something! This is also why I oppose the Republican idea of guest worker passes. I believe they will further suppress wages in Arizona.

      • JoeS
        January 21, 2011

        Yep,   I oppose that also.

        The “living wage” will find it’s own level if we take away the bottomless labor pool.

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The Tucson Progressive: Pamela Powers Hannley

I stand on the side of Love. I believe in kindness to all creatures on Earth and the inherent self-worth of all individuals--not just people who agree with me or look like me.

Widespread economic and social injustice prompted me to become a candidate for the Arizona House, representing Legislative District 9 in the 2016 election. My platform focuses on economic reforms to grow Arizona's economy, establish a state-based public bank, fix our infrastructure, fully fund public education, growlocal small businesses and community banks, and put people back to work at good-paying jobs. I also stand for equal rights, choice, and paycheck fairness for women. I am running as a progressive and running clean.

My day job is managing editor for the American Journal of Medicine, an academic medicine journal with a worldwide circulation. In addition, my husband and I co-direct Arizonans for a New Economy, Arizona's public banking initiative. I am a member of the national board of the Public Banking Institute, and I am co-chair of the Arizona Democratic Progressive Caucus, the largest caucus of the Arizona Democratic Party.

I am a published author, photographer, videographer, clay artist, mother, nana, and wife. I have a bachelor's degree in journalism from Ohio State University and a masters in public health from the University of Arizona. I grew up in Amherst, Ohio, but I have lived in Tucson, Arizona since 1981. I am a proud member of the Unitarian Universalist Church of Tucson and the Public Relations Society of America.

My Tucson Progressive blog and Facebook page feature large doses of liberal ideas, local, state, and national politics, and random bits of humor. I also blog at Blog for Arizona and the Huffington Post.

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