So wealthy Republican Cara Carlton Sneed, aka "Carly Fiorina," is running for president. She represents everything wrong in an America run by oligarchy, including running venerable Hewlett Packard into the ground and laying off tens of thousands of people.
The two businessmen who became president were Warren G. Harding and George W. Bush. In fact, government can't and shouldn't be run like a business. A business, especially a big business today, seeks only its own growth and increasing stock price. Too many of its leaders, Fiorina included, are sociopaths with no notion of the public good. So she'll fit right with the Republican contenders.
It tells us something that this supposed titan of technology forgot to register her domain name.
Now, on to Arizona...
• I read that McDowell Road in Scottsdale is "continues (its) resurgence." With what little capital that metro Phoenix attracts clustering to the eastside — which should be a hair-on-fire issue at Phoenix City Hall — this isn't surprising. Here's what McDowell won't be: walkable, livable, or accessible to frequent transit. Make it shady, narrow it by four lanes or so, extend light rail, and plant mature shade trees and then you're talking.
• Narrowing a portion of 32nd Street is a good start in Phoenix. Unfortunately, it is outside the Salt River Project so the shade trees that would make it walkable for all but those seeking skin cancer is impossible. It is also served only by the 16 bus, not enough. So one-and-a-half cheers.
• There's a new well-meaning effort to reboot the metro economy. Aspirations are to be commended, and I don't mean to sun on the parade, but $1.5 million won't cut it. Neither will slashing funding for university funding and having a well-deserved reputation as the Crazy State without Texas' oil, abundant corporate headquarters, and enormous federal funding.
Phoenix Mayor Greg Stanton said the city can't do it alone. "Here in Phoenix, we are taking a team approach." Unfortunately, the team is fighting against itself, with the East Valley especially stealing business from Phoenix. The city has special needs and the clock it ticking. That's why I have advocated it go its own way.
The big laugh line came when Steve Chucri, chairman of the county supervisors, said, "It takes more than the five Cs to move Arizona forward." If only the economy still had its Cs besides climate.
The elephant in the room, as usual, is the Real Estate Industrial Complex. It has the power to change the game but won't. So everything must eventually be reduced to a land hustle, and that's not going to make a world-class competitive metropolitan area.
A host of intelligent responses can be made. Mary Jo Waits and I championed the meds-and-eds strategy a decade ago, centered on the Phoenix Biosciences Campus (not the hustle out at Mayo). I advocated going after biomedical manufacturing in California. A vibrant, dense downtown and central core, not dependent on cars, is essential to luring top young talent. So is tolerance.
I remind you of the column I wrote in 2008 for all those who say, "Talton just takes pot shots, he never offers solutions."
Finally, Phoenix and Arizona should be the center of the solar industry. Not a new extraction industry profaning the desert, but the heart of research and development. That's where the high-wage jobs are. But Germany is the center, despite the modern solar power movement being founded in Phoenix. It's not a good sign that SolarCity, citing a "hostile" environment, is moving jobs out of state.
* "Writing off the news" is a journalism expression, specifically for columnists. As in, writing a column based on a news story.