The Arizona Eagletarian, along with the Center for Media and Democracy, Common Cause and others has documented the tendency of Arizona's ALEC-owned Republican lawmakers and Corporation Commissioners to engage in Crony Capitalism and rampant backroom deals on numerous legislative measures that result in wholesale betrayal of the interests of everyday (Main Street) Americans and Arizonans.
One reason there is less outrage about ALEC and its influence in Arizona is because of the SPIN those ALEC-owned lawmakers put on their association with and influence by that Big Business lobbying CABAL, as shown in the KPHO news report by Adam Longo on Thursday evening. Former state Rep. Amanda Reeve (ALEC-LD 28... she lost her seat because voters in that district preferred the Democratic candidate Eric Meyer) is quoted as saying ALEC is a "Good service for the legislature" and it "provides a forum to meet and discuss issues with industry leaders and fellow lawmakers from different states."
Of course the ALEC-owned lawmakers are going to do their best to make it sound innocuous. Good grief, who expects them to own up to selling out Main Street Arizona.
Then you have people who post comments to online stories, writing that (state Sen.) John McComish told her ALEC is not an evil organization. That person wondered just what kind of bad things ALEC is responsible for in Arizona.
The bottom line is that the secret to ALEC's success is the secrecy of its tactics. When we shine the light of accountability on exactly how the lobbying cabal raises and spends its money, and then identify specific legislation and executive branch decisions tainted by that money and the closed door dealings, it is no wonder those lawmakers say "nothing to see here, just move along."
In November 2012, with defeat of the two most vocal opponents -- on the Arizona Corporation Commission -- to development of the Rosemont Copper Mine (Sandra Kennedy and Paul Newman), the ACC is now (for all intents and purposes) a wholly owned subsidiary of ALEC. That means no Corporation Commissioner is going to stand up for clean air, clean water and protecting tourism interests that are brazenly threatened by Rosemont. Before the mine can start operation, the ACC must approve a high tension power line right-of-way to the copper mine site. The Arizona Department of Environmental Quality, whose director serves at the pleasure of Arizona's Republican governor, must also (and may already have) approve permits for the project.
All of this stands in contrast to the documentary film report Investigative Media's John Dougherty produced in 2012 about the Canadian owners of the company seeking those permits to wreak havoc on the environment in southern Arizona.
Cyanide Beach lays out, in excruciating detail, just what happened with a mining project those same owners developed and abandoned in Sardinia. There is no indication that the Rosemont project has any protections built in to prevent the same kind of problems here that took place on that Italian island.
So, Dougherty has announced the online release of Cyanide Beach. Now, I am thrilled to present it to you here. It is worth the 25 minutes of your time to view it.
If you want to understand the ramifications of having a legislature and Corporation Commission act as subsidiaries of ALEC, Cyanide Beach gives you a prime example. Is that how you expect those you elect to represent YOUR interests?
And speaking of euphemism and innocuousness, what do you think was told to the citizens of Mayflower, Arkansas when they bought homes or when Exxon/Mobil's tar sands pipeline was being proposed and built through their town?
Sure, let's just give ALEC-owned lawmakers (who enjoy tremendous benefits during those free trips to luxurious resorts) the benefit of the doubt that they have YOUR interests in mind when they cast votes on legislation and mining development projects (etc.).