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September 03, 2013


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Brings me to tears.
Sent off to about 30 folks I know.
Thanks Jon.

I remember my silly old dad, back in the fifties, declaring that land without irrigation (e.g. Scottsdale and Shea)would never be worth anything, never realizing that plenty of slickies were at that very moment conniving and greasing palms to sucker the taxpayers into paying for the infrastructure to make it worth plenty. He still thought, even then, that Sunny slope was a TB colony. Sometimes I run into people from old Phoenix (I haven't been back in twenty years, don't want to see it)and it's fun to get nostalgic, Wallace and Ladmo, cruising Central, orange blossoms, and so on. Hell, it's impossible not to get nostalgic.

I sold doughnuts to the Tubercular at the Walbash Trailer court in 1950,51,52, and 53. On out Cavecreek road was a bait shop about where the Hiking Shack used to be. And a few miles further near Lone Mountain was the Shangri La Nude ranch.
It still exists now in New River.

Nice one Rogue! You've done 'membered (like the kids say in Beyond Thunderdome). I grew up in the neighborhood just north of the Papago Buttes. It was unique. We'll keep the lights on...

"Time counts and keeps countin', and we knows now finding the trick of what's been and lost ain't no easy ride. But that's our trek, we gotta' travel it. And there ain't nobody knows where it's gonna' lead. Still in all, every night we does the tell, so that we 'member who we was and where we came from... but most of all we 'members the man that finded us, him that came the salvage. And we lights the city, not just for him, but for all of them that are still out there. 'Cause we knows there come a night, when they sees the distant light, and they'll be comin' home."

We lived a couple of houses down from the Hansons of Hanson's Mortuary fame. Their son was thrown out of NAU for getting drunk and wrecking his car.

All that drama and the smell of citrus blossoms to boot!

In all seriousness, I felt like the luckiest kid in the world to have landed in Phoenix, AZ in 1957, from the burbs of Babylon, NY.

Appreciate the pix,but came across this item by accident on Azcentral website.Shows az. incomes 20% below national incomes-not one word from Republic's columnists.go to



you sold donuts at a nude ranch??

I'm afraid to ask, "how did you hold the donuts when you made change?????"

Concerned in Mesa

More cheerleading from Elliot Pollack-go to


Az.is right on schedule to return to the good ol' days-if you don't eat in 2014.

Side note: new reply to "headless" in the previous thread.

I'd like to discuss the dynamics behind this trend. As of 2010:

"Phoenix consumes the same amount of water now as it did 10 years ago despite adding roughly 400,000 residents."

Yet, water in Phoenix is still comparatively cheap and we use a lot of it: "A family of four using 100 gallons per person each day will pay on average $34.29 a month in Phoenix compared to $65.47 for the same amount in Boston."

Note that urban declines in per capita water usage are a strong trend in many municipalities, not just Phoenix.

Also note that in places like Las Vegas, "Most of the infrastructure is paid for by new customers...There’s not a lot of infrastructure dollars in the water rate."

Unlike Las Vegas' water, Phoenix's supply benefits from federal and state tax subsidies, so I'm not sure to what extent Phoenix's water infrastructure depends on a Las Vegas style ponzi-scheme. But in any case, when infrastructure is built into water rates those rates become more expensive. That may be an additional reason why water rates in Phoenix are comparatively cheap.


Unfortunately, the imbedded links (some of which look promising) in this article don't seem to work.

What I want to know is to what extent water prices (both residential and non-agricultural business rates) have changed since the 1960s. (Obviously, these have to be adjusted for inflation, otherwise they'll just mislead with illusory increases.)

P.S. When I asked about historical water rates, I meant Phoenix specifically. I want to figure out the extent to which price changes have been driving the defoliating trend, and the extent to which other factors are influencing this.

Sorry: the reply to "headless" was in the "The Dam Problem" thread not the previous thread (Friday Saloon). It's short enough to post here (and relevant since we're still discussing water):

The task (political reformation of wasteful agricultural water use) is made easier by the fact that while some agricultural users of water are indeed a powerful lobby, they are also a minority; and there are competing powerful interests.

If passing (and enforcing) regulations and taxes against the immediate interests of any powerful group was impossible, then the Wall Street Journal editorial page wouldn't constantly be complaining about intrusive government "stifling initiative" with regulations and taxes.

Here's one link that worked: the survey data (30 municipalities) on water usage and costs (2010, but see footnotes also):


Did you know that your drinking water costs may subsidize golf courses?

* * *

The golf building boom in the 1990s was fueled by Wall Street speculation that made assumptions about golf based on resort trends, but the costs of operating a course have long been enormous.

Southern Arizona courses were encouraged to use treated effluent known as reclaimed water to irrigate their greens as early as the 1980s.

Some courses got specially negotiated rates, but the standard rate has risen about 40 percent over the past 10 years.

That's despite a yearly subsidy from potable-water customers that in the past decade has ranged from 3 to 28 percent of the cost of providing the reclaimed water.

The proposed subsidy for the fiscal year beginning in July amounts to more than $2.2 million, or 19 percent of the service's cost, Tucson Water officials said.


* * *

I'm not sure how different Phoenix (or Scottsdale) is from Tucson in this regard. A rise in effluent costs of this magnitude over 10 years is interesting but still doesn't answer my question about general residential and non-agricultural business costs for potable water; and it may be that effluent costs more than it did because more businesses are using it to cut costs (it's still cheaper than potable water) than 10 years ago.

There are 3 kinds of lies. Lies, damn lies and statistics.

Jon, Maybe a 50's piece on Phoenix Fight Clubs (and dance clubs), like Ciots Ballroom, Riverside and Sarges Cowtown. Or the empty lot at the rear of McDonalds where at 19 I had my last stupid macho hand to hands combat. The Globe,AZ born actor Jack Elam lost an eye at a fight at Ciots.

And U can toss in some stuff about Bobs, The zombie and Jerry's drive in restaurants.

Emil: Good answer. Thanks.

I guess my real objection has less to do with your suggestion (which makes sense) but with the necessity (politically) of being forced to pit powerful interests against one another in their little pissing contests for perceived self-interest instead of being able to address the common interests of the populace at large in a straightforward and meaningful way.

If the progressive left were more forthcoming and clear about their actual goals, the game of immediate political manipulation might suffer, but the metagame of capturing the minds of the credulous who always respond to the emotional blandishments of the right would eventually take a shellacking.

I was addressing the common interests of the populace at large in a straightforward way: water conservation will become more important if shortages of freshwater supplying Arizona occur more frequently, whether as a result of climate change, regional population growth, or both.

Since roughly 80 percent of Arizona's water use is agricultural (more in New Mexico), and many ranchers and farmers use water wastefully rather than invest private capital in efficient irrigation systems (simply because they can, because their water is cheap), serious water management plans need to consider ways to goose agricultural water users into switching to drip irrigation and other water-efficient systems.

In subsequently noting that agricultural water interests, while powerful, are a minority, as well as opposed by other powerful interests, I was merely addressing your claim that political reform of water policy is "naive" because powerful interests are involved.

Instead of arguing on the basis of vague general principles, it's important to realize that the achievability of specific political goals depends upon the concrete details of actual circumstances.

Incidentally, the best estimates of agricultural water use rely on direct surveys of farmers and ranchers. Since Arizona's total annual water allocation is known, the water use of remaining sectors (domestic, commercial, industrial, and environmental) can be determined by simple subtraction. Of course, there is an intermediate step that consists of extrapolating from a sample to statewide estimates, but if the sample size is large and the study is well designed, this is about as reliable as any such estimates can be.


Cal, years ago I enjoyed a brief, breezy book called How To Lie With Statistics.


Emil: "... I was merely addressing your claim that political reform of water policy is "naive" because powerful interests are involved."

I was not saying that reform of water policy is naïve. I was saying that your reliance upon jiggering existing rules to compel farmers or other special interests to behave differently is ultimately naïve because you are pursuing a sub rosa policy agenda (re water or downtown housing for the poor)that has no policy substance other than yours or some other politically astute persons realization that they can bend the political forces to behave in a way that ultimately benefits themselves and everyone else - but without anyone really understanding why - except you and your fellow puppeteers.

This, in my view, is caving to the rights policy of manipulating rather than enlightening.

I don't think that you believe that the powerful interests OR the voting public can be made to understand the stakes in this thing.

Emil: "Instead of arguing on the basis of vague general principles, it's important to realize that the achievability of specific political goals depends upon the concrete details of actual circumstances."

I would counter that argument with the historical fact that persons extremely astute in the realm of actual 'facts' can be led astray by their underlying belief in a juvenile politico/economic philosophy, creating a lot of damage in the process.

Allan Greenspan comes to mind. I'm sure you can come up with many examples yourself. You can even quantify them if you like.

The powerful have had the same philosophy since they started piling up the spoils in their caves

Here was one of Arizonas first Kooks.
Ralph Cameron

Ken Burns National Parks. Why would one want to live in a mega city, Ratsville.
Loneman on the edge of the Grand Canyon and the beauty of Zion.

Quit trying to save the universe with factoids. Pick up a thigh bone and become Atilla. Watch the movie Night Moves. Do something besides try and logic the worlds problems. Get off your puter and visit the real world.

I know and do work for Arizona farmers. They say screw drip irrigation but I think in ten years they will come around.


Does the Talton fan club ever meet over drinks rather than coffee? If so, I'm in. I'll even buy the first five rounds.


You are correct, "headless". The seemingly straightforward and transparent public policy reforms I have suggested (e.g., water conservation, affordable housing, urban revitalization) are actually window-dressing for the political cabal of which I am a trusted agent; a cabal whose sub-rosa agenda cannot possibly be understood by the sniveling untermenschen (which includes you, your family and friends, and everyone who can be associated with the actor Kevin Bacon using five or fewer links).

It is curious that, without being a party to the conspiracy or to the ulterior motives of its secret actors, you are nonetheless able to assert their existence with perfect certainty. This "fuzzy logic" ability you possess makes you an intolerable risk to the seizure of power we are so meticulously plotting.

Given the resources of our organization, it was child's play to hack into the blog software, read the computer IP address imbedded in your comments' envelope data, and, using the contacts we have cultivated at the ISPs, to determine your real name and physical location. Puppeteers (the quaint but descriptive term is yours) have already been dispatched to "remove the obstacle" -- look up in the sky and you will see the chem-trails!

A simple software script ensures that only you can read this. Everyone else will see only an innocuous comment written in the slightly wonky style I have created for my "Emil Pulsifer" persona; a soporific bromide on the subject of agricultural subsidies. The reply which you (and you alone) are reading will be automatically deleted in 30 seconds.

I am genuinely sorry it has come to this: your uniquely intuitive perception would be an asset to our organization; but the Vanguard requires discipline, discretion, and obedience to the hierarchy; and lacking these traits, you cannot be subverted.

And so, it's the chem-trails for you, my dear. It is best to inhale deeply, to avoid lingering unpleasantness.

Auf Wiedersehen,

Dr. Gnomon

P.S. "Bwaaahahahaha!!" (tm 2013 Dr. Gnomon, all rights reserved)

Thank you, Mr. Pulsifer, for that final, carefully reasoned argument on the role of tax policy modifications in water conservation. Your conclusions are very similar to those reached in our 2010 white-paper, "Resource Stewardship and Market Cost/Pricing Incentives".

Kent Whittaker
The Green Institute

Seriously though, "headless", it seems that you have nothing to say on the subject of water conservation (or for that matter, realpolitik).

You cannot specify a sub-rosa agenda because none exists (and if it did you would not be party to it). You cannot explain what is "juvenile" about attempts to change behavior through incentives passed by the legislative (or executive) branches of state power in the specific case(s) in question.

All you can do is smear your opponent in frustration, make unsubstantiated, inapplicable, and intellectually lazy generalizations, and offer inappropriate comparisons. (Regarding the latter, is everyone who suggests changing incentives through political action comparable to Alan Greenspan?)

Did someone say drinks?

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