Horizon Roundup: Stanton runs for Congress, former DES Director considers run for Governor


TED SIMONS: COMING UP NEXT ON "ARIZONA HORIZON," A DISCUSSION ON FREE SPEECH IN LIGHT OF N-F-L PROTESTS AND THE PRESIDENT'S THREATS AGAINST A MAJOR TV NETWORK. ALSO TONIGHT, A NEW CITY COULD BE IN THE WORK AS SAN TAN VALLEY MOVES TO INCORPORATE. AND A NEW DOCUMENTARY LOOKS AT THE HISTORY OF ASTRONOMY IN SOUTHERN ARIZONA. THOSE STORIES NEXT ON "ARIZONA HORIZON."

--VIDEO BEGINS—

TED SIMONS: GOOD EVENING AND WELCOME TO "ARIZONA HORIZON." I'M TED SIMONS. FREE SPEECH IS AT THE CENTER OF A COUPLE OF HIGH-PROFILE DEBATES, INCLUDING N-F-L OWNERS REQUIRING PLAYERS TO STAND DURING THE NATIONAL ANTHEM AND PRESIDENT TRUMP THREATENING N-B-C'S BROADCASTING LICENSE. HERE NOW IS DAN BARR, AN ATTORNEY WHO SPECIALIZES IN FIRST-AMENDMENT ISSUES. GOOD TO SEE YOU BACK HERE. THANKS SO MUCH FOR JOINING US. START WITH THE N-B-C THING, THE PRESIDENT CHALLENGING N-B-C'S LICENSE. YOUR THOUGHTS ON THIS?

DAN BARR: FIRST HE’S GOING TO HAVE TO FIND N-B-C'S LICENSE BECAUSE THEY DON'T HAVE ONE. THE PEOPLE WHO HAVE TELEVISION LICENSES ARE LOCAL TV STATIONS. N-B-C OWNS ABOUT 22 LICENSES FOR TELEMUNDO STATIONS AND OTHER LOCALLY OWNED STATIONS. THE PRESIDENT REALLY CAN’T DO ANYTHING ABOUT LICENSES FOR T.V. NETWORKS OR FOR BROADCAST STATIONS. THE F-C-C IS AN INDEPENDENT BODY. LICENSES COME UP FOR RENEWAL EVERY SEVEN YEARS. THERE IS A PROCESS IN DOING IT. WHETHER THE PRESIDENT LIKES IT OR NOT, HE HAS NOTHING TO DO WITH IT.

TED SIMONS: FROM WHAT I UNDERSTAND, COMCAST OWNS THE LICENSE?

DAN BARR: COMCAST OWNS THE LICENSES THAT ARE ASSIGNED TO THE VARIOUS INDIVIDUAL T.V. STATIONS, THE OPERATED AND OWNED T.V. STATIONS.

TED SIMONS: THIS IS A TWEET THE PRESIDENT TWEETED “WITH ALL THE FAKE NEWS COMING OUT OF N-B-C AND THE NETWORKS, AT WHAT POINT IS IT APPROPRIATE TO CHALLENGE THEIR LICENSE? BAD FOR COUNTRY.” OKAY, AT WHAT POINT IS IT INAPPROPRIATE FOR THE PRESIDENT, WHO IS THE GOVERNMENT, AND WHEN WE TALK ABOUT FIRST AMENDMENT IT’S THE GOVERNMENT SUPPRESSING SPEECH.

DAN BARR: IT’S AT EVERY POINT IT’S INAPPROPRIATE TO DO SO. HE CAN CERTAINLY BE UPSET WITH THE CONTENT OF N-B-C NEWS, IT'S NOT UNUSUAL FOR PRESIDENTS OR ANY POLITICIANS TO BE UPSET WITH NEWS STORIES ABOUT THEM, BUT FOR HIM TO THEN CHALLENGE THE VALIDITY OF N-B-C'S LICENSE, AND TO SAYTHEY ARE UNDESERVING OF THAT, PUTS PRESSURE ON THEM. NOW, NOBODY THINKS THE PRESIDENT CAN TAKE AWAY N-B-C'S LICENSES. HOWEVER, IT DOES PUT PRESSURE ON N-B-C OR ANY OTHER NEWS ORGANIZATION THINKING, MAYBE WE WON'T DO THE NEWS STORY ON TRUMP BECAUSE WE DON'T WANT TO DEAL WITH THE HASSLE THAT COMES WITH IT. SO MAYBE THEY WON’T DO STORIES ABOUT-THAT ARE CRITICAL OF TRUMP, THAT ARE BASED ON TWO SOURCES, THE NEWS DIRECTOR MAY SAY I WANT THREE SOURCES. IT'S GOT TO BE RIGHT.

TED SIMONS: BUT AGAIN, IT SEEMS TO ME THAT IF THE FIRST AMENDMENT KEEPS THE GOVERNMENT FROM INFRINGING ON MY FREE SPEECH RIGHTS AND THE PRESIDENT, WHO IS NOTHING IF NOT THE GOVERNMENT, IS VOCALIZING HIS WISH TO HAVE THOSE FREE SPEECH RIGHTS SUPPRESSED, IT DOESN'T SEEM RIGHT.

DAN BARR: IT’S NOT ONLY NOT RIGHT BUT WHAT HE’S TRYING TO DO IS TO DELEGITIMIZE THE NEWS MEDIA, TO SAY YOU CAN'T BELIEVE THEM. YOU CAN ONLY BELIEVE ME. SO WHEN N-B-C DOES A STORY SAYING THAT THE SECRETARY OF STATE CALLED DONALD TRUMP A MORON, YOU SHOULDN'T BELIEVE THEM. THEIR CREDIBILITY IS SO LOW THAT I THINK THEIR LICENSE SHOULD BE TAKEN AWAY. IT HEARKENS BACK TO WATERGATE WHERE RICHARD NIXON WANTED TO TAKE AWAY THE LICENSES BELONGING TO THE WASHINGTON POST, WHICH OWNED SOME T.V. STATIONS AT THE TIME.

TED SIMONS: I REMEMBER EARLIER IN THE YEAR, TRUMP THREATENED C-N-N’S COMPANY, TIME WARNER WHEN THEY WERE TRYING TO DO THE DEAL WITH AT&T, HE THREATENED THAT MERGER BECAUSE HE WAS UPSET WITH C-N-N. HE DOESN'T QUITE GET THE IDEA THAT HE IS GOVERNMENT, DOES HE?

DAN BARR: NOT ONLY THAT, I DON'T THINK HE GETS HOW GOVERNMENT WORKS, SOMETIMES. THE F-C-C IS AN INDEPENDENT GOVERNMENTAL BODY. THE COMMISSIONERS ARE APPOINTED FOR FIVE-YEAR TERMS AND IT’S STAGGERED. FOUR COMMISSIONERS WERE APPOINTED BY PRESIDENT OBAMA. THERE IS NO WAY ON EARTH THEY'LL DO DONALD TRUMP'S BIDDING TO PUNISH N-B-C. IT'S EMPTY RHETORIC IN ONE WAY, BUT IT'S NOT IN ANOTHER. FOR N-B-C, THEY HAVE PLENTY OF VIEWERS WHO VOTED FOR PRESIDENT TRUMP AND SUPPORT HIM AND TO HAVE THE PRESIDENT CRITICIZING YOUR VERY LEGITIMACY IS SOMETHING THAT CAN BE DAMAGING TO THEM.

TED SIMONS: AS FAR AS THE N-F-L, THE PLAYER PROTESTING, IT’S BEEN DESCRIBED AS A FIRST AMENDMENT ISSUE, IS IT THE STRIKE ME AS THE EMPLOYEES AND EMPLOYERS ARE SAYING DON’T DO IT. THE EMPLOYERS CAN SAY THAT, CAN'T THEY?

DAN BARR: SURE, THE EMPLOYERS CAN SAY THAT. NOW YOU HAVE A FIRST AMENDMENT RIGHT TO SAY IT, YOU CAN’T BE PROSECUTED FOR IT. THE EMPLOYER CAN SAY, WE’RE GOING TO REQUIRE YOU TO DO THIS. LET’S TAKE AN EASY CASE FIRST. IF A PLAYER WERE TO GIVE A NAZI SALUTE DURING THE FIRST AMENDMENT, NO ONE WOULD THINK ANYTHING OF THE OWNERS FIRING THE PLAYER, THAT’S EASY. OR PULLING DOWN HIS PANTS OR SOMETHING LIKE THAT. EMPLOYERS CAN DO THAT. THE PROBLEM COMES WHEN YOU HAVE THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES PUTTING PRESSURE ON THE N-F-L TO DO THIS AND IT BRINGS TO MIND THE QUOTE FROM FEDERICO FELLINI, THE ITALIAN DIRECTOR YEARS AGO THAT CENSORSHIP IS ADVERTISING PAID FOR BY THE GOVERNMENT. HERE YOU HAD NINE N-F-L PLAYERS AT THE BEGINNING OF THE SEASON, NINE IN THE ENTIRE LEAGUE TAKING A KNEE OR SITTING DOWN DURING THE NATIONAL ANTHEM. THE ISSUE HAS NOW EXPLODED FAR BEYOND WHAT IT EVER WAS.

TED SIMONS: BUT AGAIN, IT HEARKENS BACK TO WHAT WE WERE TALKING ABOUT EARLIER WITH N-B-C. WHEN THE PRESIDENT SAID THE N-F-L SHOULD FIRE PLAYERS WHO KNEEL, IS THAT NOT THE GOVERNMENT PRESSURING AN EMPLOYER TO PUNISH AN EMPLOYEE FOR SPEECH?

DAN BARR: SURE. AND THAT’S WHY YOU SAW THE N-F-L INITIALLY ACT SO STRONGLY ABOUT IT. THE PLAYERS AND OWNERS INTERLOCKING ARMS AND KNEELING ON THE FIELD. PEOPLE WHO BEFORE WERE NOT PAYING ATTENTION TO THESE NINE PLAYERS KNEELING BECAUSE THEY WERE SORT OF UNDER ATTACK. NOW THE N-F-L IS SAYING, WE WANT TO GET PAST THIS ISSUE AND JERRY JONES, OWNER OF THE COWBOYS, COMING OUT AND SAYING WE'LL BENCH PLAYERS IF NOT TERMINATE THEIR EMPLOYMENT IF THEY DON'T STAND FOR THE NATIONAL ANTHEM. QUERY WHAT HAPPENS IF SOME OF THE BETTER COWBOYS DECIDE TO TAKE A KNEE DURING THE NATIONAL ANTHEM. I DON’T THINK HE’S GOING TO BE FIRING EZEKIEL ELLIOTT AND DAK PRESCOTT ANYTIME SOON.


TED SIMONS: LAST QUESTION BEFORE WE GO: THE PRESIDENT CAN CRITICIZE -- HE SHOULDN'T USE HIS POWER TO PRESSURE PEOPLE WHO EXPRESS THEIR FIRST AMENDMENT RIGHTS, BUT HE IS. IS THERE ANY STOPPING THAT?

DAN BARR: HE HAS A FIRST AMENDMENT RIGHT TO SAY THESE THINGS AS WELL. THIS IS WHAT HAPPENS IN OTHER COUNTRIES WHERE THE GOVERNMENT TELLS PEOPLE WHAT THEY HAVE TO THINK AND WHAT THEY CAN'T THINK. IT'S NOT UP TO THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES. HE HAS BETTER THINGS TO DO THAN TO TELL N-F-L PLAYERS WHAT THEY CAN AND CAN'T PROTEST DURING GAMES. IF FANS DON'T LIKE IT, OKAY. THAT’S WHAT’S HAPPENED WITH COLIN KAEPERNICK. A LOT OF FANS DIDN'T LIKE HIM TAKING A KNEE AND HE'S PAID THE PRICE FOR THAT. IT'S NOT THE VENUE OF THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES TO TELL PEOPLE WHAT THEY CAN AND CAN’T THINK AND WHAT THEY CAN AND CANNOT DO.

TED SIMONS: THANKS FOR BEING HERE. COMING UP, HOW SAN TAN VALLEY IS MOVING TO BECOME ITS OWN CITY. THAT'S NEXT ON "ARIZONA HORIZON."

TED SIMONS: AN AREA IN PINAL COUNTY KNOWN AS SAN TAN VALLEY IS LOOKING TO BECOME ITS OWN CITY. RIGHT NOW THE UNINCORPORATED AREA'S BOUNDARIES LAY UP AGAINST A NUMBER OF CITIES AND TOWNS INCLUDING QUEEN CREEK TO THE NORTH, FLORENCE TO THE EAST AND THE GILA RIVER INDIAN COMMUNITY TO THE SOUTH. BUT A NEW LAW MAKES IT EASIER FOR AREAS LIKE SAN TAN VALLEY TO FORM THEIR OWN CITY GOVERNMENT, AND SO SAN TAN VALLEY RESIDENTS WILL GET A CHANCE TO VOTE ON THE ISSUE. JOINING US NOW TO TALK ABOUT THE EFFORT IS REY TORRES, PART OF THE VOTE SAN TAN VALLEY. GOOD TO SEE YOU. THANKS FOR JOINING US.

REY TORRES: THANKS FOR HAVING ME HERE.

TED SIMONS: THE IDEA OF WHAT WE SAW, BOUNDARIES FOR SAN TAN VALLEY, WHO DREW THOSE UP?

REY TORRES: IT WAS A COLLABORATIVE EFFORT TAKING INTO ACCOUNT PREVIOUS ITERATIONS OF ATTEMPTS TO INCORPORATE ALL THE WAY BACK TO 2004. MAPS DRAWN BETWEEN THEN AND NOW TOOK INTO ACCOUNT THE CDP, DESIGNATED PLACE THAT GAVE SAN TAN VALLEY ITS NAME, INKLINGS OF THE FIRST HEGEMONY AS A COMMUNITY. WE TOOK PIECES OF THAT COMMUNITY WHERE PEOPLE HAVE HAD EXPERIENCE WITH THAT PROFESSED OR LET US KNOW THEY WANTED US TO BE PART OF THE MUNICIPALITY. WE TRIED TO COUNT ALSO EXTERNAL PLAYERS THAT WE MET WITH: STATE LAND, OTHER PLAYERS THAT WERE PART OF THE FORMATION OF THIS MAP.

TED SIMONS: YOU ARE UNINCORPORATED RIGHT NOW. YOU ARE MOVING TO INCORPORATE. WHAT DOES UNINCORPORATED MEAN?

REY TORRES: UNINCORPORATED MEANS YOU ARE BASICALLY AT THE WHIMS OF THE OTHER POWERS THAT BE THAT DON'T NECESSARILY HAVE YOU IN MIND WHEN MAKING DECISIONS. FOR EXAMPLE, UP UNTIL RECENTLY, WE DIDN'T HAVE FIVE SUPERVISORS ON THE BOARD OF SUPERVISORS IN PINAL COUNTY, WE HAD THREE. SAN TAN VALLEY HADN’T ALWAYS BEEN AT THE FOREFRONT OF EVERYBODY’S RECOLLECTION WHEN THEY WERE MAKING DECISIONS THAT WERE GOING TO IMPACT US DIRECTLY. WE HAVE THREE LEGISLATIVE DISTRICTS FROM THE LEGISLATURE THAT SPLIT UP WHAT IS KNOWN AS SAN TAN VALLEY. WE HAVE ALL THESE AREAS FROM OUR ELECTED OFFICIALS THAT DON'T NECESSARILY DIRECTLY CORRESPOND WITH WHAT WE KNOW GENERICALLY AS WHAT WILL HOPEFULLY BE A FUTURE MUNICIPALITY.

TED SIMONS: AS FAR AS INCORPORATION IS CONCERNED, WHEN YOU BECOME SAN TAN VALLEY, YOU HAVE YOUR OWN CITY GOVERNMENT. FLORENCE STAYS AWAY. QUEEN CREEK STAYS AWAY. BUT THEY CAN STILL GET INVOLVED BEFORE YOU ARE INCORPORATED.

REY TORRES: ABSOLUTELY, THEY CAN. THE LINES THAT WE DREW DON'T NECESSARILY KEEP THEM FROM TRYING TO ACTIVELY ANNEX AREAS WE CONSIDER TO BE SAN TAN VALLEY NOW. IT JUST MEANS THAT THIS IS WHAT OUR INTENDED PLACE IS GOING TO BE, TO PULL IN THE PEOPLE TO VOTE ON THE DECISION HOPEFULLY WHICH WILL HIT THE BALLOT NEXT YEAR.

TED SIMONS: HOW MANY RESIDENTS OUT THERE?

REY TORRES: AS OF RIGHT NOW IT HOVERS AROUND 100,000 RESIDENTS. THE MAP PINAL COUNTY WILL BE GIVING US, THE ACTUAL NUMBERS THAT FALL WITHIN THE LINES. WE’LL HAVE THAT INFORMATION SHORTLY.

TED SIMONS: WHAT IS YOUR THOUGHT ON HOW MANY OF THOSE HUNDRED THOUSAND WANT THIS TO HAPPEN?

REY TORRES: WE HAVE GOTTEN A LOT OF GREAT FEEDBACK OVER THE YEARS AND NOT JUST WITH THIS ITERATION. THE DIFFERENCE IS, WE HAVE NEVER HAD THE RIGHT TO VOTE. THAT CHANGED WITH H-B-20-88.

TED SIMONS:TALK TO US ABOUT THAT NEW LAW. WHAT CHANGED?

REY TORRES: WHAT CHANGED WAS STATE REPRESENTATIVE FARNSWORTH TOOK IT UPON HIMSELF WITH HELP FROM PEOPLE IN THE COMMUNITY TO BRING THAT ABOUT ALLOWING US TO CIRCUMVENT THE PROCESS WHICH ORIGINALLY WAS IF YOU WERE WITHIN SIX MILES OF AN ADJACENT COMMUNITY THAT OPPOSED YOUR INCORPORATION THEY COULD STOP YOU. NOW THE NEW LEGISLATION STATES THAT IF THE ADJACENT COMMUNITY IS LESS POPULOUS THAN YOURS AND YOU HAVE AT 15,000 IN YOUR MUNICIPAL PLANNING ZONE, YOU CAN CIRCUMVENT THAT.

TED SIMONS: WAS FLORENCE AND QUEEN CREEK BOTH AGAINST THE IDEA OF INCORPORATION? IF SO, WHY?

REY TORRES: FLORENCE FROM THE PERSPECTIVE OF STATE SHARED REVENUE. BECAUSE WE BOTH HAPPEN TO BE IN PINAL COUNTY, THEY WOULDN'T WANT TO GIVE UP ALL OF THE CONTRIBUTIONS OF PINAL COUNTY RESIDENTS, THOSE HUNDRED THOUSAND PEOPLE, CONTRIBUTED TO THE COFFERS OF ALL OF THE MUNICIPALITIES IN PINAL COUNTY. QUEEN CREEK HAS A UNIQUE PLAN WITH WHAT IS UNDERSTOOD AS SAN TAN VALLEY. THEY HAVE DEVELOPMENT PLANS FOR THEIR FUTURE POTENTIAL CITY OR THE FUTURE MUNICIPALITY THAT IS CURRENTLY SEEN AS SAN TAN VALLEY.

TED SIMONS: SO THEY ARE NOT KEEN ON THIS IDEA, I WOULD IMAGINE.

REY TORRES: THEY ARE NOT KEEN ON US EXISTING.

TED SIMONS: AS FAR AS THE PETITIONS, THOSE HAD TO BE OKAYED BY PINAL COUNTY. BOUNDARIES ALSO.

REY TORRES: CORRECT. THEY WERE TURNED IN SIMULTANEOUSLY. WE GOT APPROVAL FOR THEM. THERE WAS A LOT OF INTERACTION TO KNOW IT WAS OKAY BEFORE WE SUBMITTED THEM. THERE WAS A LOT OF WORK THAT WENT INTO THIS. IT WASN'T JUST WE DROPPED DOWN THE MAP AND WE ARE GOOD TO GO. THERE WAS A LOT OF LEG WORK THAT WENT INTO THAT.

TED SIMONS: I HEARD YOU SAY IT'S NOT AN INCORPORATION ISSUE, IT'S A RIGHT TO VOTE ISSUE.

REY TORRES: IT WAS A RIGHT TO VOTE ISSUE THAT WE GOT THE LEGISLATION PASSED, WHICH WAS FANTASTIC. NOW IT'S AN ISSUE OF SELF DETERMINATION MORE THAN ANYTHING ELSE. THERE IS NO GREATER CRITERIA FOR A SUCCESSFUL COMMUNITY THAN HAVING SELF DETERMINATION. LIKE I ALLUDED TO BEFORE, NO SINGLE ELECTED OFFICIAL REPRESENTS WHAT WE KNOW AS SAN TAN VALLEY. NO JURISDICTION RESPONDING TO THE PEOPLE COLLECTIVELY IN THE ENTIRETY OF SAN TAN VALLEY. IT'S GOING TO BE A UNIQUE THING WHERE WE’LL NOT ONLY EXIST BUT BE PLAYERS IN CONVERSATIONS AS THEY RELATE TO EDUCATION, INFRASTRUCTURE, AND HEALTHCARE. ALL OF THESE THINGS PEOPLE WHO LIVE IN THE MUNICIPALITY TAKE FOR GRANTED, THAT THEIR MUNICIPAL GOVERNMENTS DO FOR THEM WHILE THEY’RE SLEEPING OR AT WORK. THESE ARE THE KIND OF THINGS THAT THE NEW MUNICIPAL GOVERNMENT WILL DO FOR SAN TAN VALLEY.

TED SIMONS: AND WHEN DO THE PEOPLE OF SAN TAN VALLEY GET TO VOTE ON IT?

REY TORRES: THE COUNTY WILL DESIGNATE THIS ONCE THEY SUBMIT TO SIGNATURES. WE ARE LOOKING FOR NEXT AUGUST EARLIEST OR NEXT NOVEMBER.

TED SIMONS: BETWEEN NOW AND THEN, DO YOU EXPECT ANY TROUBLE FOR FLORENCE OR QUEEN CREEK?

REY TORRES: WE’RE EXPECTING A LOT OF FUN.

TED SIMONS: REY TORRES, THANKS FOR BEING HERE. WE APPRECIATE IT.


TED SIMONS: ARIZONA'S DARK SKIES HAVE LONG PROVIDED THE PERFECT BACKDROP TO STUDY THE STARS. A NEW DOCUMENTARY CALLED FOCUSING THE UNIVERSE HIGHLIGHTS THE HISTORY OF ASTRONOMY IN SOUTHERN ARIZONA SPECIFICALLY AT THE U OF A'S STEWARD OBSERVATORY.

VIDEO: HUMANS HAVE ALWAYS LOOKED INTO THE NIGHT SKY AND WONDERED: WHO ARE WE? WHERE ARE WE? ARE WE ALONE? 100 YEARS AGO, A COMMON UNDERSTANDING WAS THAT OUR GALAXY, THE MILKY WAY WAS ALL THERE WAS. BUT NOW WE CAN SEE MORE THAN 100 BILLION GALAXIES. AND ASTRONOMY IS ON THE VERGE OF SEEING LIGHT FROM THE ORIGIN OF THE UNIVERSE. HOW HAS THIS BECOME POSSIBLE? THIS BUILDING IS STEWARD OBSERVATORY AT THE UNIVERSITY OF ARIZONA IN TUCSON. IT BEGAN AS ONE BUILDING WITH ONE TELESCOPE. NOW STEWARD OBSERVATORY HAS BECOME MORE THAN ONE BUILDING. IT IS AN INSTITUTION OF TELESCOPES AND LABORATORIES AND PEOPLE. IT IS THE ONLY LAB IN THE WORLD WHERE MASSIVE TELESCOPE MIRRORS ARE MADE. IT IS A PIONEER OF INFRARED ASTRONOMY WHICH REVEALS WHAT WAS ONCE INVISIBLE TO THE EYE, AND IT DEVELOPED SOME OF THE MOST COMPLEX INSTRUMENTS FOR USE IN SPACE. WHY STEWARD OBSERVATORY CAME TO BE AND WHAT IT WAS USED FOR IS THE STORY OF VISIONARY PEOPLE, THE EVENTS OF THE MODERN AGE, AND THE HUMAN NEED TO UNDERSTAND OUR PLACE IN THE UNIVERSE. THIS IS THE STORY OF STEWARD OBSERVATORY.

TED SIMONS: FOCUSING THE STARS WAS CREATED BY TWO UNIVERSITY OF ARIZONA PROFESSORS, ONE OF THEM, MICHAEL MULCAHY, JOINS US NOW TO TALK ABOUT THE FILM ALONG WITH TOM FLEMING, AN ASTRONOMER AT STEWARD OBSERVATORY. GOOD TO HAVE YOU BOTH HERE. THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR JOINING US. THANK YOU FOR MAKING THE TRIP UP. THE HISTORY OF ASTRONOMY IN SOUTHERN ARIZONA. QUITE A HISTORY.

MICHAEL MULCAHY: IT STARTS IN NORTHERN ARIZONA.

TED SIMONS: TALK TO US ABOUT WHO IS PERCIVAL LOWELL AND ANDREW ELLICOTT DOUGLASSS. TALK ABOUT THAT DYNAMIC?

MICHAEL MULCAHY: I'M GOING TO ASK TOM TO RESPOND TO THAT. HE IS THE EXPERT --

TED SIMONS: BEFORE WE DO THAT, YOU RESPOND. WHO ARE THESE PEOPLE?

MICHAEL MULCAHY: DOUGLASSS IS A REMARKABLE FIGURE WITH MULTIPLE CAREERS. HE STARTS OUT AS AN ASTRONOMER AND ENDS UP FOUNDING THE U OF A’S TREE RING LABORATORY. LOWELL IS A RICH ASTRONOMER WHO HOPES THERE IS LIFE ON MARS. DOUGLASS HAS TO TELL HIM THERE ISN'T.

TED SIMONS: AT THE TIME, THIS IS A HUNDRED YEARS AGO. PEOPLE THOUGHT THERE WAS LIFE ON MARS.

TOM FLEMING: AT THE TURN OF THE 20TH CENTURY IT WAS THE CONVENTIONAL WISDOM THAT THERE WAS LIFE ON MARS, A CIVILIZATION ON MARS. AND THAT’S WHAT INSPIRED H.G. WELLS TO WRITE THE WAR OF THE WORLDS. A.E. DOUGLASS SCOUTED THE ARIZONA TERRITORY FOR LOWELL'S OBSERVATORY, AND HE DECIDED TO PUT IT IN FLAGSTAFF. IN FLAGSTAFF WHERE THEY HAVE BEAUTIFUL CRISP CLEAR WEATHER, THEY WERE ABLE TO OBSERVE MARS, BUT THEY DID IT WITH THE EYEBALL AND SKETCHED. LOWELL CONVINCED HIMSELF HE SAW CANALS ON MARS THAT WERE BRINGING WATER DOWN FROM THE ICE CAPS TO THE ARID DESERT-LIKE EQUATORIAL REGIONS OF MARS. DOUGLASS DIDN'T SEE IT, SO DOUGLASS GOT FIRED FOR BEING A GOOD SCIENTIST. HE WAS UNEMPLOYED ABOUT FIVE YEARS. THEN HE GOT A POSITION AT THE UNIVERSITY OF ARIZONA. IT WAS THERE HE WANTED TO BUILD A TELESCOPE TO RIVAL THE LOWELL OBSERVATORY IN FLAGSTAFF. THAT WAS THE DIFFICULT THING. HE LOBBIED THE STATE LEGISLATURE, HE WAS ACTUALLY INTERIM PRESIDENT OF THE UNIVERSITY OF ARIZONA IN 1910. PRIOR TO WORLD WAR 2 THE GOVERNMENT DIDN'T SPEND MONEY ON RESEARCH. IT WAS PHILANTHROPY. YOU HAD TO FIND A RICH WIDOW. HE FOUND HIS RICH WIDOW IN ORACLE, ARIZONA, HER NAME WAS LAVINIA STEWARD. MRS. STEWARD’S HUSBAND MADE HIS MONEY-IT WAS BASICALLY QUAKER OATS. THE PEORIA OAT COMPANY LATER BECAME THE QUAKER OAT COMPANY. MRS. STEWARD GAVE A BEQUEST A HUNDRED YEARS AGO OF $60,000. TODAY, $60,000 IN 1916 WOULD BE $1.3 MILLION.

TED SIMONS: GOOD ENOUGH TO GET THAT THING GOING. BUILT THERE IN THE HEART OF EVERYTHING RIGHT NOW, BUT BACK THEN IT WAS IN THE CORNER OF THE CAMPUS. WHEN YOU GET THIS INFORMATION, PUT THIS FILM TOGETHER. PUTTING ALL OF THIS TOGETHER, HOW DO YOU GET THE NARRATIVE AND FIGURE THAT OUT?

MICHAEL MULCAHY: OVER ABOUT FOUR YEARS. MY COLLABORATOR, FACULTY MEMBER PETER BEUDERT WHO HAS SINCE RETIRED AND LIVING IN LONDON NOW. HE AND I STARTED BY INTERVIEWING, PETER DID A TREMENDOUS AMOUNT OF RESEARCH. IT'S A STORY THAT EXISTS IN ARCHIVES AND PEOPLE'S MEMORIES AND THEN IN CURRENT FACULTY WHO ARE ASTRONOMERS. IT HAD NOT BEEN PUT TOGETHER. OVER TIME, WE FOUND THE STORY, AND DOUGLASS IS AT THE CENTER OF IT, AND HE'S AT THE CENTER FOR A REASON, THE REASON THAT HE HAD ALL OF THESE KINDS OF SKILLS: SCIENCE, ADMINISTRATIVE, BUSINESS -- THAT STARTS STEWARD OBSERVATORY, AND WHAT IT'S BECOME TODAY IS QUITE FANTASTIC. IT NEVER WOULD HAVE HAPPENED IF AT THAT TIME HE HAD NOT HAD ALL OF THOSE SKILLS.

TED SIMONS: DEFINITELY A TRAILBLAZER THERE. WE HAVE STEWARD, THE DONATIONS AND TELESCOPE GOES UP, WORLD TURNS, WORLD WAR II HAPPENS. ALL OF A SUDDEN, IT SEEMS LIKE SCIENCE TAKES A HUGE LEAP FORWARD. THE IMPACT ON ASTRONOMY IN SOUTHERN ARIZONA.

TOM FLEMING: PART OF THAT HAD TO DO WITH ANOTHER GENTLEMAN. HIS NAME WAS GERARD KUIPER. NASA WAS FOUNDED IN 1958. PRETTY SOON PRESIDENT KENNEDY TOLD US, WE ARE GOING TO THE MOON. PROBLEM WAS, THE BEST MAP OF THE MOON WAS HAND DRAWN. GERARD KUIPER SAID WE HAVE TO HAVE A PHOTOGRAPHIC ATLAS OF THE MOON. THE ASTRONOMERS AT THE UNIVERSITY OF CHICAGO DIDN'T WANT TO GIVE HIM TELESCOPE TIME. HE SHOPPED AROUND. PRESIDENT HARVILLE INVITED HIM TO THE UNIVERSITY OF ARIZONA. AT THE U OF A, WE HAVE TWO DEPARTMENTS THAT DO ASTRONOMY. THE ASTRONOMERS WHO STUDY THE SOLAR SYSTEM HAVE THEIR OWN DEPARTMENT. THAT WAS STARTED BY GERARD KUIPER. HE BROUGHT ALL THIS NASA MONEY IN.

TED SIMONS: YES, AND I WANT TO TALK ABOUT THAT MONEY BECAUSE THE NATIONAL SCIENCE FOUNDATION IS A HUGE -- STATE FUNDING AT THE TIME, VERY BIG FACTORS HERE AS WE MOVE FROM WORLD WAR II ONTO THE 70S AND 80S, THE IMPORTANCE OF PUBLIC FUNDING.

MICHAEL MULCAHY IT HAS BEEN KEY. I THINK THE WORK THAT STEWARD OBSERVATORY'S DONE, THAT OTHER RESEARCH INSTITUTIONS HAVE DONE, WOULDN'T EXIST WITHOUT PUBLIC MONEY. PUBLIC MONEY IS DRIED UP NOW FOR THE MOST PART. ONE OF THE QUOTES IN THE FILM THAT COMES FROM DOUGLASS, WHEN HE DEDICATES STEWARD, HE TALKS ABOUT RESEARCH THAT IS KNOWLEDGE DEVELOPED THAT AT THE TIME YOU DON'T KNOW YOU NEED IT. RIGHT NOW, EVERYTHING THAT HAS COME FROM STEWART HAS COME FROM HIS ORIGINAL IDEA AND MUCYH GOVERNMENT FUNDING. RIGHT NOW THE GOVERNMENT FUNDING HAS GONE AWAY. IT'S BEEN -- CERTAINLY CORPORATE FUNDING. IT'S A VERY DIFFERENT LANDSCAPE AND ONE WONDERS WHAT EFFECT IT WILL HAVE ON SCIENCE REASEARCH IN THE FUTURE.

TED SIMONS: WE HAVE LIKE TEN SECONDS LEFT.

TOM FLEMING: WE’RE GOING BACK TO PHILANTHROPY, THOUGH, TO DO THE BIG PROJECTS. ONE OF THE BIGGEST TELESCOPES IN THE WORLD WILL BE IN CHILE. A RESIDENT OF PHOENIX WHO PASSED AWAY LAST YEAR, RICHARD F CARIS, GAVE 20 MILLION DOLLARS TO HELP FUND THAT TELESCOPE. MRS. STEWARD STARTED IT. ITS SEEMS BIG PHILANTHROPY IS COMING BACK.

TED SIMONS: WE'LL SEE IF PUBLIC FUNDING, FEDERAL AND STATE FUNDING COMES BACK AS WELL. GREAT WORK ON THE PROJECT. CONTINUED SUCCESS. THANKS FOR BEING HERE. THAT IS IT FOR NOW. I'M TED SIMONS. THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR JOINING US. YOU HAVE A GREAT EVENING.

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In this segment:

Rachel Leingang: Reporter, Arizona Capitol Times
Bob Christie: Reporter, Associated Press
Luige del Puerto: Reporter, Arizona Capitol Times

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