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Archive for December, 2011


Flagstaff Arizona Aspen

ASPENS in the Flagstaff area indicate fire recovery generations ago.

FALL became an obsession last September when the desert glare had taken its toll on me since early April, so two weeks into September I headed to Missouri to wrap up some family business and hoped to miss some heat. Missouri was enjoying an Indian Summer, the Amish reported sleeping on their front porches in July and August when the humidity turns deadly, fall started with one leaf and then another. The first weekend in October the leaves started changing but most of the locals complained the lack of rain had muted the color and it was a sleeper at best. I kept hoping so I decided to take a road trip to the Missouri River thinking that might give me more of a overall picture of the beginnings of fall in the Midwest. I found more and brighter colors in a region where more rain had fallen over the summer.

Missouri River Country near Glasgow takes on the rolling pitch of waves.

Rich display of treed forest that characterize the mid west United States

The beauty of the Mid West is its forests, lots of different trees, walnuts, oaks, maples, birches, spruce and a rainbow of color. As a photographer moves west the altitudes and species of trees, change vary and flat out disappear. The pioneers used to cut extra axles for the trip west mid-Kansas, cause they knew trees where going to thin out. When I hit Flagstaff, Arizona mid-October, it was still warm but within a couple days the weather changed.

Beautiful golden Aspens in front of the snow kissed San Franciscan Peaks.

Navajo and Hopi are battling Flagstaff over the plan to use effluent to make snow.

The Aspen around the peaks had started probably the week before but the next layer up the mountain was picture perfect. There is some Oak in the Flagstaff area but Oak Creek Canyon would be best if it wasn’t choked with Phoenicians looking for color. Instead try the old army supply road from Williams to Jerome via Perkinsville, before you drop down to the river, many roads lead off to richer views. Fall comes first to the desert the last weekend in November, places like Maple Camp near Portal, New Mexico in the Chirichuas is a great place to find Maple reds. Tucson won’t see fall until year end, the historic row of Cottonwoods at Old Fort Lowell on Tucson’s eastside, has colored every year just before New Years…FALL finally arrived three and a half months later.

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This Fall Color Hot Line can give you and idea of how soon color is beginning to show, where and what altitudes and give yourself a sense of where it is heading and when it will be starting in specific areas. There was a photographer who carried self-addressed post cards, pre-stamped so when he got an idea. He would write it down on the postcard and then ask the farmer to stick it in the mail when he ready to harvest his field, so the photographer would have a good chance of a fall treeline with a farmer working in his field in the background. He had cards arriving all the time and an idea attached to each one.

Once a parade ground for troops chasing Geronimo, today people walk their dogs and kids.

Beautiful cottonwood leaves show up with the new year, the river air currents affect the turning of the leaves.



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JAN Brewer Book signing at Republican headquarters in Tucson

Jan Brewer at Republican Headquarters in Tucson

Arizona Governor Jan Brewer signs her new book "Scorpions for Breakfast"

Settling in to sign books Jan Brewer spoke earlier of the emotional anguish she suffered at the hands of the federal government.

Arizona Governor Jan Brewer signs her new book, Scorpions for Breakfast

Arizona Governor Jan Brewer signs her new book, Scorpions for Breakfast

The Mental and Emotional anguish experienced by Arizona Governor Jan Brewer last year at the hands of the Federal Government who spurned her lawsuits to close the Arizona-Mexican Border to smuggling and illegal immigration. not to mention SB10-70, held up in court but channeled by a half dozen red states who too are being drowned by fed red tape, was the pain needed to get her to write her new book, “Scorpions for Breakfast”. Brewer who spoke December 13 in Tucson at Republican Headquarters, Fifth Street and Craycroft Rd, to a dozen interested fans. A half dozen members of Tucson TV media showed and but were not given the “Water-boarded” quote because Governor Brewer barred media from her opening comments where she spoke to staff and book buyers. The Governor was in a good mood, last week the Supreme Court had agreed to listen to Arizona’s lawsuit on the US-Mexico Border and SB-70 and Jan felt certain her vision would be upheld, attendees lauded her for her stand on ACCESS and eliminating “entitlements” which are stealing Arizona’s future says the Governor.

Jan speaking with the local supporters who came out on a dark, wet and stormy evening.

Amazon.com has 31 reviewers whose comments on reading SCORPIONS FOR BREAKFAST vary, here is my edit;

Scorpions for Breakfast gives a personal look at her political journey and the decision-making process to critical issues of the day. The subtitle for this book clarifies the focus of this book, “My Fight Against Special Interests, Liberal Media, and Cynical Politicos to Secure America’s Borders.” Call it “editorial license” or “dramatization”, but Gov. Brewers recounting of her Jan 09, 2011 State of the State address is certainly not factual. She did not lead the joint legislature in a moment of silent prayer, then look up defiantly and quote Isiah as she claims in the book. Following a standing ovation from her colleagues in response to her previous remark, she returns to her teleprompter and then makes her statement.

Jan really understood the issues, but did not seem to realize the amount of emotions SB1070 would instigate. The founded and unfounded emotions generated were obvious a surprise when one state tried to regain control of a growing problem.

Wonderful book about an absolutely incredible public servant and her fight to bring Arizona back from its abyss after the Napolitano administration and stop illegal immigration, which is one of the worst problems that our nation has ever faced. I admire Governor Brewer so much for her tough, can-do attitude. She always seems to do the right thing

I would strongly urge the people of America to read this powerful book written by a stand-up lady who sense of right and wrong is nothing short of admirable – quite unusual in a politician.

I ordered two of these books one for me and one for a friend. Both of us are members of The Tea Party. I have read this book and really enjoy what was wrote in it. It did open my eyes to some things I didn’t know.

Brewer states the case of her critics more or less accurately but then offer almost nothing on point to rebut them. An example is her sloppy sleight of hand on page 101: “National Public Radio would falsely report [SB 1070] had been hatched in a 2009 meeting between Arizona legislators and representatives of the private prison industry (who presumably, the story noted, would benefit from the law). In fact, Arizona senator Russell Pearce, the original sponsor of the bill, had introduced similar legislation almost every year since 2003.” Satisfied with correcting NPR’s error in chronology, Brewer makes no attempt to deny anyone’s ties to the private prison industry, or the private prison industry’s backing of the bill. Incidentally, it’s curious that she finds it such a novel idea that the private prison industry would benefit from an increase in demand for detention space; perhaps the principles of supply and demand were omitted in whatever economics lessons she’s had.

The governor’s kvetching comes as she pats herself on the back for having the gumption to sign Senate Bill 1070, Arizona’s notorious “papers please” law, which alienated more than a third of Arizonans (the brown folk and those allied with them), turned Arizona into a national laughingstock, and most significantly for Brewer secured her win over then-Arizona Attorney General Terry Goddard in the 2010 gubernatorial contest.

In Scorpions, Brewer likens the criticism she took over signing 1070 to “water-boarding,” takes umbrage at getting called a “racist,” “Hitler’s daughter,” and “Satan’s whore,” and expresses annoyance at the protesters who dared harangue her at the state Capitol. Oh, and she really hated the drums that some anti-1070 protesters utilized. “They were there every day: marching, chanting, and beating drums,” she notes in Scorpions. “Always beating drums.”

I’m a big fan of Governor Brewer, but this book has really disappointed me. I expected her to dive deeply into her personal philosophies and thought processes, but these were touched upon only superficially. Unfortunately, this book is more like a campaign ad for her next election. I’m sorry I spent my time and money on this book.

Jan Brewer plays the role of ‘strong conservative,’ evidenced by her signing S.B. 1070. She waffled and delayed on signing, then finally did so when it became clear that Sheriff Joe would run against her in the primary, and win – if she didn’t. I like that she finally did sign it, but despise her having also pushed for a sales-tax increase recently to support local schools – the biggest ‘special interest’ and cause of high taxes in Arizona. Usually these books are written to boost support for higher office, but Brewer is going nowhere after this term is completed – I have no idea why this was written. It is simply a lot of puffery and hot air.

The night Jan came to town was a dark and stormy night and still a dozen people took the time to come to Republican Headquarters and say hello to the Governor of the State. It’s Christmas time, lots of Xmas Parties, cheer and good will, so maybe Jan thought her new read would make nice stocking-stuffers…Scorpions for Breakfast sells for $15.94 on Amazon.com priceded down from $25.99 and with free shipping. In comparison, Michelle Bachmann’s My Story is $17.51 and My Journey to the White House by Hermann Cain is marked down to $14.17. In comparison GABBY: A story of Courage and Hope hardcover sells for $17.81 but the kindle edition is $12.99 and thousands of folks filled Centennial Hall on the University of Arizona campus December 6th standing in line to hear Gabby’s husband Mark Kelly talk about writing their new book. The weather was also much better.

The Arizona Governor enjoyed the book-buyers who came out.

Jan laughs with bookbuyer.