Beyond Nov. 8th

I wear my political philosophy on my sleeve… which many would tell me is bad for my friendships and my business.

I have not really found that to be true.

Engaging on difficult topics with strangers, friends, even clients, disciplines me to be thoughtful, be kind, be humble, to look for humor, and always start by seeking areas of agreement. Quite often I fall short of this bar, I get prideful about the depth of my understanding, sometimes my temper starts to boil, I become competitive and try to “win” or monologue when I should simply be listening. However, I am regularly brought low when I do these things, when I step outside the proper bounds of civilized discussion. Painfully, though luckily, almost every time I do these things circumstance disciplines me… and I get better.

Whatever skill I have today at communicating my beliefs comes not from inborn ability but mostly from screwing up and doing it wrong then learning and doing better. Whatever skill I have tomorrow or next year will be bred from the mistakes I make between now and then.

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Raising The Bar: Redux

As members of the Colorado Legislature who played intimate roles in the budgeting and appropriation of marijuana tax revenues, we feel it is our duty to set the record straight so that voters in both states have accurate information about this subject.

We can say with certainty that the claims about Colorado marijuana tax revenues featured in your committee’s ads range from highly misleading to wholly inaccurate. As you can see in the attached issue brief provided by Colorado Legislative Council staff and fact sheet produced by the Colorado Department of Education:

[List of notable inaccuracies]

We respectfully request that you stop airing or otherwise publishing campaign ads that contradict these facts. We also trust they will be reflected in any of your future communications to Arizona voters regarding Colorado’s experience with regulating and taxing marijuana for adult use. (Colorado Officials Politely Ask Arizona’s Anti-Marijuana Group To Stop Lying)

Almost five years ago, I wrote an article entitled Raising The Bar. The subject of this article was the perennially poor quality of public policy conversation and punditry from which our city, county and state suffer.

This year Arizona has a demonstrably destructive minimum wage hike and benefits mandate on the ballot (Proposition 206). New law which will knock more rungs out of the bottom of the employment ladder and make it harder for young people and low skilled workers to find a path to success in the labor market.

However, with the laudable exceptions of Americans for Prosperity Arizona and The Free Enterprise Club, no organizations have attempted to form a principled opposition to this harmful initiative. No one is trying to educate and persuade voters regarding this critical economic issue.

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