Trump wears goggles but no mask on Arizona PPE factory tour

Wow. Read the rest

Remembering the Awhatukee House of the Future, a "shining home of dreams" that became a $3 tourist trap

In 1979, construction concluded on the Awhatukee House of the Future, a $1.2m model home in the new Phoenix suburb of Ahwatukee Village, co-built with input from Frank Lloyd Wright's Taliesin Associated Architects and equipped with 10 networked Motorola processors that retailed for $30,000. Read the rest

Tempe, Arizona police have caught Penis Man

Police have captured the culprit behind the "Penis Man" graffiti tags that, er, popped up in several dozen spots across Tempe and Phoenix, Arizona over the last two months. (News report from December below.) While Penis Man quickly developed a cult following, the cops weren't laughing. On Saturday, Tempe police revealed that they had nabbed Dustin Shomer, "on 16 counts of aggravated criminal damage, 8 counts of criminal damage and one count of criminal trespassing in the first degree." Shomer has since released a statement on the Facebook Unmodded - NEIGHB'rhood Group, as reported in the Phoenix New Times:

"I just spent the last 24 hours in Tempe and Phoenix police custody for spraying 'Penis Man,'" Shomer wrote. "They raided my condo and vehicle and swarmed my entire complex in west Phoenix with 25 heavily armed SWAT officers, and pointed a silenced assault rifle in my face.

"Anyone with any doubt who the bad guys are here ... be certain it is the City of Tempe, City of Phoenix, and police forces valleywide. There is no excuse for pointing an AR-15 in the face of a non-violent offender."

Shomer added in further posts that he spent a night at Maricopa County's Fourth Avenue Jail following more than five hours in Tempe police custody, during which time he was giving "nothing to eat."

He wrote that he was "told I wouldn't receive medical attention after requesting it, even though it was posted on the wall to ask if desired.

Read the rest

Arizona HOA threatens residents with fines for posting critical comments about its board

The Homeowners' Association in Val Vista Lakes -- a private community in Gilbert, Arizona -- has threatened at least 11 residents with fines of $250 each if they do not delete Facebook posts that are critical of the HOA and its board, thereby demonstrating the case for criticizing the HOA and its board. Read the rest

Cop violently arrests and terrorizes a 15 year old Black quadruple amputee

A sheriff's deputy in Pima, AZ was video-recorded wrestling with and screaming at a 15 year old Black teenager with no arms or legs; the cop, who was not named, was called to a group home where the teen lived, because the teen had been upset and yelling and shouting, and had knocked over a trash can. Read the rest

Phoenix's police union has a secret deal with the department to purge dirty cops' disciplinary records

For two decades, the Phoenix police union has had a secret deal with the police department that required that the disciplinary records of cops would be "purged," so that no one, not even their supervisors, would be able to retrieve them. Read the rest

Owner of Phoenix apartment building serves eviction notices to every tenant so he can turn their homes into unlicensed hotel rooms

Like many large US cities, Phoenix has a housing shortage and like many US cities, that crisis is worsened by the conversion of much of its housing stock into unlicensed hotel rooms through companies like Airbnb, VRBO, and Wanderjaunt, a new competitor in the unlicensed hotel room industry. Read the rest

Man donates mother's body to science, discovers it was sold to the military for "blast testing"

When Jim Stauffer's mother Doris Stauffer died at the age of 73, he sought out a way for her body to be used to further scientific study: she had Alzheimer's but did not carry the genes commonly associated with it, so he thought that her brain might yield further insights into the disease. Read the rest

FBI agent describes finding "Frankensteins" and a "cooler full of penises" at an unregulated Arizona body-donation center

Phoenix's Biological Resource Center advertised that it would collect your relatives' remains and dispose of their body parts for medical purposes, cremating the unused portions and returning them; it was founded by the aptly named Stephen Gore, whose highest level of educational attainment was a high school diploma and who learned the processes by which he dismembered and preserved the bodies in his care "from books or the internet." Read the rest

Arizona: People are violently attacking driverless cars from Google/Alphabet's Waymo

People like this guy waving his gun at a driverless Waymo van in Arizona are attacking self-driving vehicles with rocks, knives, and *their own cars*, sending a message to tech companies like Waymo, which is owned by Alphabet (Google's parent company). That message is, please go experiment with artificial intelligence in somebody else’s neighborhood. Read the rest

Kyrsten Sinema wins Arizona Senate. Now Dems have 47 seats to GOP's 51.

Kyrsten Sinema, the apparent winner in Arizona's Senate race, is the first Democrat to win that vote for decades. Read the rest

Arizona kills vaccine education program to placate the ignorant

A small coalition of folks who think vaccines are evil have managed to eliminate Arizona's vaccination education program. The parents were afraid their children may be forced learn that vaccines are a good thing.

Via AZ Central:

The state of Arizona has canceled a vaccine education program after receiving complaints from parents who don't immunize their school-age children.

The pilot online course, modeled after programs in Oregon and Michigan, was created in response to the rising number of Arizona schoolchildren skipping school-required immunizations against diseases like measles, mumps and whooping cough because of their parents' beliefs.

But some parents, who were worried the optional course was going to become mandatory, complained to the Governor's Regulatory Review Council, which reviews regulations to ensure they are necessary and do not adversely affect the public. The six-member council is appointed by Gov. Doug Ducey, with an ex-officio general counsel.

Members of the council questioned the state health department about the course after receiving the public feedback about it, emails show. The state responded by canceling it.

The complaints that ended the pilot program came from about 120 individuals and families, including 20 parents who said that they don't vaccinate their children, records show.

Read the rest

David Garcia thinks he can become governor of Arizona by campaigning for progressive policies instead of against Republicans

Despite being home to millions of sensible people, including a large bloc of potentially progressive Latinx voters, Arizona keeps elevating billionaire-friendly (and billionaire backed) white supremacist authoritarians to high office. Read the rest

Where to find me at Phoenix Comics Fest this week

I'm heading to Phoenix Comics Fest tomorrow (going straight to the airport from my daughter's elementary school graduation) (!), and I've got a busy schedule so I thought I'd produce a comprehensive list of the places you can find me in Phoenix: Read the rest

Arizona is about to get its first statewide teachers' strike

The contagion is spreading: Arizona is the latest red state where teachers -- backed by immense public sympathy -- are staging first-of-its-kind state walkout, protesting against the very idea of neoliberal austerity, recognizing that with the GOP running their state and their nation, that the problem is Republicanism, not some local phenomenon. Read the rest

Trump radicalized teachers, now Republicans are saying they won't vote for the party anymore

The teachers' rebellion is a global phenomenon, and though it's been brewing for a long time, the public was a lot more skeptical of teachers' demands when they were striking in Democratic strongholds under a Democratic president. Read the rest

Mom rouses sleeping son on Easter morning by tazing him: "Get up! It's Jesus' day!"

Phoenix-area mom Sharron Dobbins felt like her her teenaged son wasn't getting up quickly enough on Easter Sunday, so she tazed him in the leg while shouting "Get up! It's Jesus' day!" Read the rest

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