Rise of the Oligarchs – July, 16, 2018

The Democratic Perspective team addresses some of the things that have diminished the power of voters and led to an oligarchy (a nation controlled by the moneyed class) as determined by a peer-reviewed study. Co-hosts Steve Williamson and Mike Cosentino discuss the impact of dirty money, the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC), and the Koch-funded PAC called Americans for Prosperity. Then Gary LaMaster explains the growing inequitable representation of states in the Senate and, in turn, the Electoral College.

Posted in Campaign Finance, Class Conflict, Constitutional Issues, Dark Money, Democratic Governance, Elections, Front Organizations, Government, National Politics, Political Action Committees, Political Contributions, Presidential Elections | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Terry Goddard Interview – Podcast July 9, 2018

Dirty Money. Dirty Politics. Democratic Perspective co-hosts Mike Cosentino and Steve Williamson welcome former AZ Attorney General Terry Goddard who is leading an effort against dirty money to require Political Action Committees to reveal the original source(s) of their funding. Goddard believes that we all have a right to know the identity of those who are trying to influence our votes. The effort has raised 285,000 signatures – more than the 225,000 required to get the issue on the ballot. Later in the show, Gary LaMaster identifies the 13 ways Republicans are using to suppress, manipulate and marginalize Democratic votes.

Posted in Arizona Politics, Dark Money, Elections, Interviews, Podcasts, Racial Discrimination, Racism, Voter Suppression | Leave a comment

Jeff Biggers Interview – Podcast July 2, 2018

Resistance, Reclaiming an American Tradition. That’s the title of a new book written by this week’s guest. Jeff Biggers is an author, journalist, historian and playwright. During a conversation with Democratic Perspective co-hosts, Steve Williamson and Mike Cosentino, he explains that resistance is the greatest form of patriotism. To make the point, Biggers uses the words of Thomas Paine, one of our nation’s most important and least known founders, who said, “Resistance is not just a protest. It’s an act of renewal.” Biggers reasons that resistance is necessary for undoing mistakes, saying “Hopelessness adapts. Hope resists.”

Posted in Arizona History, Arizona Politics, Civic Renewal, Civil Liberties, Community Activism, Education, Elections, Environmental Issues, Founding Fathers, Government, Human Rights, Immigration, Interviews, Local Politics, National Politics, Political History, Political Theory, Public Education | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Jesse Lee Interview — Podcast June 25, 2018

A Culture Of Corruption. Democratic Perspective co-host, Steve Williamson, welcomes Jesse Lee, VP of communications for the Center for American Progress. After spending 8 years in the Obama White House, Lee contrasts the extreme level of corruption in the Trump administration with that of Obama’s. “It’s not exactly a coincidence when Republicans control all parts of government that they try to get their hands on everything possible,” he says. “A lot of the Republicans I used to argue with over Obama policies are now in shock. Obama worked for his constituents almost every hour of every day. Now it’s almost the opposite. You’d be hard pressed to find an example of this administration that isn’t corrupt.”

Posted in Corruption, Cultural Change, Government, Interviews, National Politics, Political Lies, Political Parties | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Anita Glazer and Jim Ledbetter Interviews – Podcast June 18, 2018

A Dishonest GOP Attempt To Defund A Public School. The Democratic Perspective co-hosts welcome Anita Glazer, president of the Mingus Union School Board, and Jim Ledbetter, former president, to talk about a political trick aimed at cutting funding for a high-achieving high school through consolidation. The upcoming consolidation vote is the result of a legislative bill written to target the school. Instead of saving money as promised, a vote for consolidation will reduce the school’s operating budget by at least $300,000 per year.

Posted in Arizona Politics, Disinformation, Education, Education Funding, Elections, Interviews, Local Politics, Political Lies, Public Education | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

Home Rule – Podcast June 11, 2018

Returning Power To City Government. In 1980, the Arizona State Legislature passed a constitutional amendment that, in effect, wrenched local control away from Arizona cities and towns. The amendment imposed a formula-based spending limit that makes it difficult for cities to meet their needs. To regain control of its own budget, the City of Sedona has placed a Local Alternative Expenditure Limitation on the ballot to allow citizens to vote for home rule. To discuss the initiative in depth, the co-hosts of Democratic Perspective, Mike Cosentino and Steve Williamson, welcome Justin Clifton, City Manager of Sedona, and Steve Segner, owner of El Portal and Chair of the Sedona Lodging Council.

Posted in Arizona Politics, Constitutional Issues, Democratic Governance, Elections, Government, Interviews, Local Politics, Public Policy | Tagged , , , , | Comments Off on Home Rule – Podcast June 11, 2018

Deedra Abboud Interview – Podcast June 4, 2018

Focusing on issues, leadership, transparency, and accountability. Democratic Perspective co-hosts Steve Williamson and Mike Cosentino welcome Deedra Abboud, Democratic candidate for US Senate. The daughter of a US Marshall and federal investigator, she says she grew up with a romantic view of the Constitution. Abboud disdains corporate and PAC money saying, “If you’re not human, I will not take your money.” Believing that people want candidates who stand for something, she refuses to tailor her message to demographic groups. Instead, she fearlessly presents and defends her issues to everyone who will listen because “that’s what a leader does.”

Posted in Anti-Gay Discrimination, Arizona Politics, Bigotry, Campaign Finance, Civil Rights, Community Activism, Dark Money, Elections, Ethics, Government, Gun Control, Health Care, Health Care Policy, Interviews, Medicaid, Medicare, Philosophy, Political Candidacy, Political Polarization, Public Accountability, Public Health Policy | Tagged , , , | Comments Off on Deedra Abboud Interview – Podcast June 4, 2018

Memorial Day Edition – Podcast May 28, 2018

The True Meaning Of Memorial Day And How To Protect Our Democracy.  Democratic Perspective host Mike Cosentino begins the show by acknowledging the sponsors and supporters who have contributed to help keep the show on the air for seven years. He then explains the origin of Memorial Day, noting that it is a solemn occasion to remember our nation’s fallen heroes. He then addresses many of the threats to our democracy. Finally, he lists important resources, candidates and ways we can change the future for the better.

Posted in Arizona Politics, Dark Money, Democratic Governance, Education, Education Funding, Elections, Government, Local Politics, National Politics, Political Polarization, Propaganda, U.S. Armed Forces, Veterans' Issues | Tagged , , | Comments Off on Memorial Day Edition – Podcast May 28, 2018

Brill, Gordon, McClelland Interviews – Podcast May 21, 2018

Working to return government to the people. Democratic Perspective co-hosts Steve Williamson and Mike Cosentino welcome Karen McClelland, president of Democrats of the Red Rocks, Dr. David Brill, candidate for US Congress, and Mark Robert Gordon, candidate for AZ Secretary of State. McClelland details the role of local political clubs. Brill contrasts his approach to politics with the divisiveness of incumbent Paul Gosar. And Gordon explains the problems with Arizona’s corrupted voting system and his plans to use the office to better serve the public. Combined, the three guests highlight the problems with GOP-led governance while offering a vision of hope and a return to civility.

Posted in Arizona Politics, Campaign Finance, Dark Money, Education Funding, Elections, Ethics, Government, Interviews, National Politics, Paul Gosar, Political Candidacy, Political Clubs, Political Contributions, Political Polarization, Public Accountability, Voter Suppression | Tagged , , , , , , , | Comments Off on Brill, Gordon, McClelland Interviews – Podcast May 21, 2018

Pierce, Cardenas and Fryer Interviews – Podcast May 14, 2018

Making Arizona safer, more equitable and more enjoyable for everyone. Democratic Perspective co-hosts Mike Cosentino and Steve Williamson welcome Democratic candidates Bill Pierce, Mark Cardenas and Kelly Fryer to talk about their plans for a better Arizona. Pierce who is running for State Mine Inspector explains the need to hire more inspectors to ensure worker and environmental safety for the thousands of active and abandoned mines in Arizona. As a candidate for State Treasurer, Cardenas explains the need to raise revenue since Arizona is operating on half the budget of comparable states. And, as a candidate for Governor, Fryer offers a positive vision for Arizona in which people come first, saying, “I really believe that at the heart of the community, the state, the country should be love. A fierce, ferocious love that stays in difficult situations because our futures are tied together.”

Posted in Arizona Budget, Arizona Economy, Arizona Politics, Civil Society, Community Activism, Democratic Governance, Economic Policy, Education Funding, Elections, Environment, Environmental Issues, Government, Interviews, Mine Safety, Public Accountability, Tax Revenues, Taxation | Tagged , | Comments Off on Pierce, Cardenas and Fryer Interviews – Podcast May 14, 2018