March 31, 2010
Well I have just about had it with lawyerin' for a while. I won't go into it, but a big reason for my burnout of late has to do with this convoluted case where my client, a hot dog vendor, was shut out of a fetish porn convention and wanted me to file a petition for a writ of mandamus on his behalf. This long, exhausting story begins with me trying to explain to the client how writs of mandamus have nothing to do with peddling hot dogs or fetish porn, but you know how clients are. They watch one episode of "The Deep End" and they think they know all about the legal profession and what it's like to be a physically attractive member of Generation Y.
Anyway, the point is I don't wanna write about this week, or any week for that matter, in lawyerin'. But since there does seem to be a constituency for blogging about entertainment, especially the guilty pleasure variety, I thought I'd take a crack at writing an entertainment post.
Hall & Oates' music definitely falls into the category of guilty pleasure entertainment, and it just so happens I went to see them on Saturday at the Long Center. The Long Center is where people go to watch operas and stuff, so we put on our Sund'y-go-to-meetin' duds for the occasion. As it turned out, though, our experience during the concert made it feel more like we were catching a show at Emo's...or maybe the bleachers at Wrigley Field.
You see, there was this gaggle of Idiots sitting directly behind us...maybe 6 or 8 of them. I first had the sense it was going to be a long night when one of them loudly observed, as the band took the stage, that John Oates looked like Bobabooey from the Howard Stern Show. Apparently $100 tickets at the Long Center get you seats in the Bobabooey section. Had I known, I would have gladly paid an extra $25 each for an upgrade so that my wife and I could better enjoy the show from the Members Who Make Armpit Farting Noises Only section.
At first, it was just dimwitted banter that registered like white noise static, but then both Hall and Oates kept rudely drowning out their conversations with a bunch of damn music. So the drunkest, most inarticulate Idiot fought back by loudly braying "She's Gone" - offkey and off-rhythm - during the song of the same name's chorus. Every time it came up. Never noticed before just how many repeating choruses there were in "She's Gone".
When he and his date got too drunk and/or embarrassed to stick around, the others chimed in with a spirited debate about who owed whom a tequila shot. I shit thee not. I'm not filling in what I imagine they were shouting at each other over "Sarah Smile," 12 other people besides myself heard it loud and clear. Come to think of it, I'm more sure they were discussing whose turn it was to buy tequila shots than I am about Hall & Oates even playing "Sarah Smile." And that pisses me off, because it's one of my H&O faves. It was at this point we kindly asked them for the first time to keep it down to a low roar.
At that point several of the Algonquin Shooters decided to continue their repartee outside, presumably near the bar, but they left behind the last two Idiots. Both were Really Annoying Women who, left to their own devices and with nothing else to do besides listen to some band, then had to recap the whole night's events in that Really Annoying Woman-to-Woman manner of conversation. You know, the kind where they recount the most mundane exchange as if it possessed the same level of drama as the climactic courtroom scene in A Few Good Men ["...and I'm like 'you owe me a tequila shot?'"..."and she's like 'Um, no i don't?'"..."and then I was all like 'Um, yah, you do?"..."and she's all 'Did you order the Code Red?' - I know! - and I'm like 'Whatever. You can't handle the truth?'..."].
It wouldn't have been a problem, but they were both using their Really Annoying Women outside voices. That's when the people next to us spoke up - but this time the Last of the Idiots were told, rather than asked, to in effect, Shut-The-Fuck-Up. It worked, but by then we were 2/3 of the way done with the show. I can, however, tell you the encore numbers really rocked.
My Big Ass Militia Wedding
If you're registered at Red's Indoor Range, you might be a Hutaree...
Yep, even folks engaged in seditious conspiracies to overthrow the government, incite violence and bring on civil war go shopping, get married and have Facebook pages just like normal people. Well, not completely like normal people.
Check out the Gawker for more pix of a militia gal's Big Day.
March 30, 2010
Shit! You mean 39% was WRONG?!?!
39% and douchebag luminaries like AG Abbott (who recently got spanked by BAR, nice work!) and Ag Commissioner Todd Staples (he of the GIANT FREAK HEAD), have been bitching and moaning about EPA's proposal to regulate carbon emissions, mostly based on their mistaken belief that climate change isn't real.
You may remember Hank rather neatly putting them in their place on that particular issue. Of course, it wasn't hard considering he's a pretty smart guy and they are, collectively, about as smart as a kitten that was starved of oxygen in the womb. To help with others afflicted with delusional thinking, there's now a convenient visual aid to show that climate change is real... it won't, of course, sway them because these men are hell bent on fighting common sense and empirical fact in the service of their true masters, their campaign contributors who mean (literally) the world to them.
For the rest of you, here's the map of the US showing temperature changes over the last 50 years. It helps to look at this when you start to think that maybe Myron Ebell is right and it's not getting warmer.
March 26, 2010
Roundin' Up The TPA
The Texas Progressive Alliance's weekly blog roundup will reach 32 million more Americans regardless of their pre-existing conditions.
Last week, TXsharon made a video statement at the EPA Public Hearing on the proposed ozone standards.
Who Needs a Proctologist when you have former State Representative Rick Green running for the Texas Supreme Court?
This week on Left of College Station, Teddy looks at the voter turnout in the Bryan and College Station municipal elections and has to ask the question if minority rules? Teddy also unpacks the misleading poll on health care reform that the Chamber of Commerce commissioned to attack Democrats in conservative congressional districts. Left of College Station also covers the week in headlines.
CouldBeTrue of South Texas Chisme wants to know why monuments to racism and fear are so important to Republicans. Why not spend taxpayer dollars on something constructive like education or health care?
WCNews at Eye On Williamson posts on the continuation of skyrocketing homeowners insurance rates in Texas Homeowners insurance corporations - increasing our pain, Perry, GOP sit idly by.
The Texas Cloverleaf tells the Dallas Trinity Tollers I told ya so.
Phillip Martin at Burnt Orange Report has covered Rick Perry's "secret" border plan in great detail -- namely, the lies and politics Perry has thrust into a very serious and dangerous situation along the Texas-Mexico border. Be sure to read his post, Rick Perry's Political Grandstanding Misrepresents Definition of "Spillover Violence and follow the links at the bottom of that post to learn much, much more.
WhosPlayin's story last week about a tax-dodging Lewisville City Councilman resulted in a tearful admission at the next council meeting, where news cameras were running. WhosPlayin follows up on the results of that meeting, and analyzes the media coverage and truthfulness of the councilman in his response.
As if sea level rise, stronger hurricanes, and more extreme weather events weren't bad enough... not the Golden Cheeked Warbler too! Texas Vox is sad to report this week that birds of a feather feel the heat from climate change.
A little March madness in the form of preparations for his Senate district convention overtook PDiddie at Brains and Eggs, and he lumped in two updates on the campaigns of Bill White and Lakeisha Rogers (completely unrelated, trust him).
LibbyShaw over at TexasKaos, checks in on Representative Rep. Louie Gohmert who, in speaking to a Tea Bagger rally "declared that "demons" - yes, demons - have invaded the capital (and likely the souls of Democrats), forcing lawmakers to mislead the public about the content of the health care bill." Check out the rest of the fun here: TX U.S. House Rep: "Demons have Invaded the Capital".
March 25, 2010
No, dumbass, that's not the story
Apparently, some of the R bloggers have picked up on the RPT's ethics complaint against Bill White for, basically, nothing. Well, it's not nothing... it's based on Cathie's in depth review of Bill White's financial report and his tax returns, coupled with her inability to understand DEFERRED COMPENSATION. Needless to say, no one will be asking Cathie to underwrite income on a loan any time soon (trust me, it's harder than it looks even with that convenient SEIA) or audit tax returns or understand anything more complex than a bumper sticker or the menu at Krispy Kreme.
In short, the RPT flubbed and filed a complaint with the TEC that did nothing but point out they can't read.
However, that wasn't the story in the R blogosphere, such as it is, which ran with it as if it was something other than chilishit in a gas station bathroom toilet. Even Red State got in on the action. Rather than do a recap on Teh Stupid, I'll just take a moment to let them know what the story really is...
YOUR PARTY IS STUPID
YOUR LEADER, INEPT
TAKE A BOW FOR FUCKING UP
YOU'RE ABOUT TO GET SWEPT
CAMPAIGNS ARE ABOUT IDEAS
NOT MEANINGLESS PAP
NEXT TIME, TRY A HIT THAT LANDS
INSTEAD OF BRAINLESS CRAP
What now, Bitches?
March 24, 2010
Whine on, executives
It's long been an article of faith that executive pay, which has been growing at a breathtaking clip over the last 30 years, is earned (deserved, even!) because only these people are uniquely talented and able to do this job. Without them, our nations firms would all collapse.
As we all know from the last 4 years, that's wasn't so much right. And when the federal pay czar, Ken Feinberg, decided to implement pay limits at companies that received federal money, we thought this was not only a brill idea, we actually waited for the indignant flood of incompetents who would flood out of the companies, only to be replaced by people a whole lot cheaper.
“For months, Wall Street banks and the troubled automakers feverishly protested that their top executives would flee if they were not lavishly rewarded for their talents. New data, however, suggests the departures were more of a trickle than a flood.
Of the 104 senior executives whose pay was set by the federal pay regulator in the last two years, 88 executives, or nearly 85 percent, are still with the companies even though their pay was drastically cut back, according to people briefed on the government data.
The relative stability, at least within the executive suite, suggests that a soft job market, corporate loyalty and personal pride helped deter the feared management exodus at the companies hardest hit by the pay rules.”
I'm tired of lousy, overpaid, petulant management. Rise with me, fellow shareholders, and let's ask Ken Feinberg to serve on compensation committees for companies all over the US.
March 23, 2010
PSA : Keeping ones mouth shut
Everyone LOVES to brag about their accomplishments. Whether it's something as meaningless as finally gaining the ability to practice law in Texas or as inspiring as making the perfect waffle, people want to share what they're doing and what they're particularly good out.
Even the skeeziest ho will tell you tales, even if you don't ask them, of their sexual talents and how often they've used them. So, yeah, it's human nature to brag, especially about how well you're doing in business. However, even the most inept lawyer would advise their master criminal clients not to, you know, GO ON TV AND SHARE DETAILS OF THEIR CRIMES.
The San Marcos husband and wife, who went on the popular show and trumpeted their moneymaking scheme of shoplifting toys and reselling them on the Internet, were sentenced to prison yesterday by a federal judge.
And Dr. Phil McGraw didn’t get off too easy, either.
District Judge Irma Gonzalez sentenced Matthew Eaton, 34, to 27 months in prison — one year more than prosecutors with the U.S. Attorney’s Office thought was sufficient punishment.
Nora Eaton, 27, was sentenced to one year and one day in custody.
Gonzalez had little sympathy for Matthew Eaton, calling his conduct in running the scheme over two years “despicable.”
But first she went off on McGraw, the TV psychologist who dispenses help on his syndicated show with such catchphrases as the sharp “Get real!” the disdainful “How’s that working for you?” and the unusual “Did you fall out of the dumb tree?”
“What a charlatan this man is,” the judge said during the hearing. “What a terrible, terrible man.”
Gonzalez was perturbed that McGraw holds himself out as a doctor wishing to help. But, the judge said to Matthew Eaton, “he obviously didn’t help you.”
Matthew Eaton’s lawyer said the couple went on the show seeking help for their chronic shoplifting problem. On the program, however, they came across as bragging about their exploits and not appearing particularly troubled.
Instead of helping them, producers egged them on to exaggerate their cases, said defense lawyer Leila Morgan. And the only help they got was free copies of McGraw’s books, she said.
The show was broadcast in November 2008 and, perhaps not surprisingly, it caught the attention of federal law enforcement. A search of the couple’s home in March 2009 revealed about 500 boxes of toys awaiting shipment.
My favorite part was Judge Gonzalez dressing down Dr. Phil who richly deserves it. Thank you, Oprah, for sharing Dr. Phil with the whole world.
March 21, 2010
Roundin' Up The TPA
The Texas Progressive Alliance heads into March Madness with its own bracket of news and links for the week.
CouldBeTrue of South Texas Chisme wonders how Republicans can be so violently against having services they desperately need?
When are you "too gay" for your job? The Texas Cloverleaf finds out.
WhosPlayin broke the story of a Tea-Partying Lewisville City Councilman who has failed to pay his business property taxes for the 28 years he has been in business. On the same weekend, the story came out that the son of the Flower Mound mayor and her public school Bible class promoting husband was busted with marijuana, a BB gun, and stolen property in his car. (But don't worry, he wasn't actually arrested.)
Karl Rove is "proud" that the Bush administration tortured suspected al-Qaeda terrorists. That -- coupled with the Obama administration's recalcitrance to prosecute Rove, Cheney, Bush, et.al for their admitted war crimes -- has PDiddie at Brains and Eggs a little more pessimistic than usual.
Attention all Breathers! It's URGENT that you attend the EPA Public Hearing on the proposed new ozone standards. The hearing is Tuesday in Arlington and to help get you motivated TXsharon posted a video on Bluedaze: DRILLING REFORM FOR TEXAS.
Neil at Texas Liberal says that with one-in-three folks in Houston lacking health insurance, Houston Mayor Annise Parker should be speaking up in favor in health care reform. Mayor Parker has already spoken up on the federal issues of the census and EPA air quality standards. So why not speak up on this federal issue that impacts Houston?
Lightseeker at TexasKaos tells us, again, why Rick Perry Must Go. It seems his cronies want the private sector bozos who messed up the validation procedure for Food Stamps, to advise on fixing the system, and they don't understand what all the fuss is about. I mean doesn't every vendor get a no-bid contract?
Nuns, not Bishops, Drive Social Renewal and Reducing Abortions
Aside from a strained relationship with my eighth grade teacher, Sister John Michael, the nuns in my life provided wonderful guidance, and a few kept me from getting into very serious trouble.
Sometimes, they have been ahead of the curve on progressive issues.
Now, if only the bishops will follow them and embrace social renewal, and let go of politics.
Some answers are so obvious.
March 20, 2010
Fake Uggs and Your Feet
If you were thinking that you loved the look of the Uggs but not the price of the real thing, you may be considering some lookalikes that are every bit as ugly as the original.
Turns out, they do some nasty things to your feet. No, they don't go all Dick Morris on them but they can cripple you.
Squeezing into killer heels, many women are happy to endure a little pain in the name of fashion.
But medical experts have warned that the trend for cheap Ugg boots is a price too high to pay.
They have said that knock-off versions of the designer boots are crippling a generation of young women, 'literally breaking' their feet.
With just six months of wear women could saddle themselves with a lifetime of foot deformities, backache and pain in their feet.
If you must know, it was the use of the word 'crippling' that really got me.
March 18, 2010
Keep Austin Weird?
Yeah, I know we've got Leslie and a city council that acts as if the automobile is just a passing fad, but compared to San Francisco, folks, we're not even in the same league
An ex-vegan, hit with a pepper-laced pie while promoting her anti-vegetarian work at an anarchist book fair in San Francisco, says her assailants were cowards.
Lierre Keith, 45, stood at a lectern at Golden Gate Park's Hall of Flowers Saturday at the 15th annual Bay Area Anarchist Book Fair discussing her book, "The Vegetarian Myth," when three people in black hooded sweatshirts and masks ran from backstage, shouted, "Go vegan," and threw chili pepper-laced pies in her face, the San Francisco Chronicle reported Tuesday..
The North American Animal Liberation Press Office allegedly supported the attack, the Chronicle said.
Keith's assailants were "masked marvels" who "made their statement very eloquently and succinctly on behalf of the billions of animals she advocates killing," the newspaper reported the Press Office as saying.
March 17, 2010
It's All Over Now Baby Blue
The One True Democrat Dennis Kucinich shocked his fans this AM, announcing that he will vote FOR the fatally flawed Health Care Reform bill now in Congress. The Ohio congressman followed his press conference with lunch at Wendy's, where he had a Baconator Triple Combo.
March 15, 2010
Quit whining, Kesha...
Kesha Rogers, one of the more articulate LaRouchebags I've ever seen, won the Democratic primary in CD 22. She ran on a platform that included impeaching the President (don't ever underestimate how pissed EVERYONE is at the President, especially the libs and moderate who were jerking themselves off last year over the prospect of an African American President only to find out that in reality the man is damn near as white as Ward Cleaver. And the Beav), pulling troops out of the Middle East, restoring NASA and building roads. She wrapped herself up in FDR and JFK, talking about a restoration of the economy in vague, nonspecific terms with no clear understanding of exactly what would happen if the LaRouchebag plan were followed (except for building infrastructure, which I'm all about).
In other words, a platform TAILOR FUCKING MADE for CD 22. So, it should come as no surprise that, combined with an active and engaged campaign, allowed her to win the Democratic nom. Unfortunately, like most LaRouchebags, she's also batshit crazy. As a side note, Kesha, WHY THE HELL MILITARIZE SPACE?!?!
Now for those of you that don't know, LaRouche hates pretty much everyone who isn't straight and Christian. Until recently, I don't think he was all that fond of African Americans but apparently the old fucker is warming up to them. He also thinks we're still at war with the British.
Up until this weekend, it was clear this would be a solid loss and we'd just wait for next cycle to run a real candidate (no offense, Kesha, but you're still batshit crazy). I had hoped we'd all be able to ignore the crazy.
Alas, the SDEC saw to it that wouldn't happen. They passed a resolution declaiming Kesha and letting everyone know that it's OK not to help or support her (and you can't support the R either). As if most of us hadn't already decided there was no way in hell we'd ever vote for a LaRouchebag.
Not for nothing, y'all, but I really wish y'all had just left well enough alone. Now she's whining and so is DVO. Kesha's threatening to sue which will, of course, go nowhere. And in the end all it does is focus still more attention on Kesha, who desperately craves it.
Now all I want to do is throw the fuck up.
March 14, 2010
Oh, yeah... welcome, new people.
It's once again time for SXSW so to all you new people, welcome. Please be kind to the natives as they may bite. Either that or they'll take your mobile from you and beat you with it. And please, under-fucking-stand that the 3G problems you're having are all AT&T, not because you're in Austin. If you just have to make an important call and your connection sounds like it's being filtered through a fish tank, take your network mode down to 2G. If you don't know how, meet me at Red's Porch on S Lamar today at 7:30 because I want to berate you for being a nebbish in front of your goddamn staff.
AND YES, WE ALL HATE AT&T.
For those of us natives wondering why the fuck we keep doing this, apparently there is a pretty big economic impact from SXSW. Well, not huge in comparison to the regional economy but decent... around $100mn annually. Of course, no one bothers to discover how much is spent by natives to deal with the inconvenience of SXSW. I can calculate my losses from yesterday alone which came to $12. Multiply that by 200k people and pretty soon we're talking about not much money.
So, whine away if you must or, if you can, avoid going north or south (depending on where you live) for a few days. For the rest of us, there's Ed Bluestein and CapTex since they seem to have discovered MoPac.
March 13, 2010
I don't know nothin' 'bout birthin' no democracies
In Green Zone, Matt Damon and his shaky cameraman from the Bourne flicks take on the Iraq Unpleasantness. To the nauseating camerawork is added grainy film stock. In this age of HDTV, should a Major Motion Picture look like it was shot on a cellphone? Especially with a script that has all the subtlety and nuance of Michael Moore explaining imperialism to a four year old? Meh.
March 12, 2010
Perry: Defy "Burdensome" Federal Time Change Mandate
Continuing the tough anti-Washington rhetoric from his primary campaign, Governor For Life Rick Perry denounced the advent of Daylight Savings Time this weekend. "Texans know how to set their own clocks without interference from federal bureaucrats," he said in a press release. Perry announced his counter-initiative, State Sovereignty Savings Time. At 2 AM Sunday morning, Texans will set their clocks back 150 years.
March 11, 2010
Tom Pauken's still a whiny bitch after all these years
I get that the Tribune is trying to fill some space and they're really trying to create discussion. But seriously, can we all agree that Tom Pauken is just too goddamn stupid to be given any opportunity to do anything other than go to my fucking cleaners and pick up my shirts?
This is the same fuckup who, as chair of the Texas Republican Party, got sidelined by that buttertroll Rove. Now, I know y'all think Rove is some sort of douche with a direct line to Satan, but in reality he can't do shit unless the other guy is crazy, stupid, completely incompetent or a combination of all of the above. Tom Pauken, just so you know, IS ALL OF THE FUCKING ABOVE.
Fortunately, in my own state of Texas, Republican Gov. Rick Perry and the Republican-controlled Texas legislature have kept the growth of state spending at reasonable levels, tracking the rise of cost of living (the inflation index) and population growth. That was not the case, however, when George W. Bush was governor. Then, state spending grew far faster than inflation and population growth. Nor is that the case in many other states, which kept milking the cow of the productive private sector by imposing higher and higher taxes and spending more and more of the taxpayers’ money. Those high-tax states are feeling the pain, as companies and taxpayers, suffering from high taxes and the loss of good jobs, move elsewhere. Moreover, the drop in housing prices and the slowdown in the economy since 2007 means that many states are racking up even more debt to fund state government.
Tom, you can take your mouth off 39%'s dick now since he's already cashed his paycheck. This is bullshit chockablock with utter nonsense. How big a deficit are we going to run in the biennium? No one can say because our bright as a blacklight Comptroller keeps pushing out different numbers. However, we all know there will be one WHICH IS WHAT HAPPENS WHEN THE ECONOMY IS IN RECESSION, PEOPLE ARE LOSING JOBS AND THE GOVERNMENT LOSES REVENUE. The government can't just magically stop spending, mostly because it provides essential services to people who didn't fucking disappear just because there is a recession and they can't pay their taxes. THAT is why when you're running surpluses, you don't cut taxes. Instead, you store up that cash to meet the needs you have down the road. That's what true conservatives do. Of course, Republicans have already ground through the surplus (which was smoke and mirrors anyway) AND still needed, what, $13 bn from the Feds? Wasn't it Perry, not too long ago, begging for more federal money from the Congressional delegation (so Schwarzenegger-esque) ?
On to Exhibit B
Even in an ostensibly low-tax state like Texas, many local taxing bodies have shown little fiscal restraint in recent years. The housing boom allowed many of these local governments to raise property taxes in a seemingly painless fashion through the “stealth tax” of skyrocketing appraisal values. Property-tax revenues rose ten percent or more annually without local governments actually raising the tax rate. Local officials could tell voters that they had not raised taxes since the tax rate hadn’t gone up, yet property-tax revenue grew from $9 billion in 1985 to $30 billion in 2004. That was approximately three times faster than the rate of inflation during the same period. Texas had the ninth-highest property taxes in the country until Governor Perry and the Texas legislature cut school property taxes by one third in 2006. Unfortunately, that set off a feeding frenzy among local taxing bodies, and a major portion of the education property tax cut was negated over the next three years.
I LOVE conservatives who don't know what the hell they're talking about but seem to want to talk at length in an effort to prove their ignorance. What Tommy doesn't realize because he's too stupid to get is that "the “stealth tax” of skyrocketing appraisal values" is nothing more than APPRECIATION. Ideally, when you buy an asset like, for example, real fucking property (aka, a house, Tom), it will increase in value over time. If the value of that asset is taxed, ideally it will be linked with your income so that an increase in the asset will also increase your income, easily enabling you to pay the higher tax. Of course, in Texas, wages have been essentially flat for more than 30 years (roughly about the time we elected that idiot old man, Clements), after adjusting for inflation. Meanwhile, house prices have gone up considerably. SEE THE PROBLEM? While you're still making basically the same $65k per year, your house is now worth 4 or 5 times what you paid for it and your taxes are 4 to 5 times higher.
Morons like Pauken wanted a cap on appraised value increases, as if a government could dictate such a measure. They did that in California and it's pretty much THE reason they're bankrupt. Well, that and the fact that their economy collapsed spectacularly because they allowed the kind of lending you can't do in Texas thanks to Democrats. Without those caps, property prices wouldn't have spiraled out of control.
What we need is a system of taxation that tracks income and population growth so we can pay for services (PUBLIC SAFETY, ROADS, SEWERS, SCHOOLS... you know, THAT STUFF) as all these new people come here. As it stands now, most new Texans don't pay dick for their first few years, but they sure as hell don't mind dropping the kids into public schools and clogging up the 35. And no, Tom, it ain't the 'messicans'. They pay a disproportionally high percentage of their income in taxes, something you and your conservatives-in-name-only would do well to remember the next time you moan and whine about how immigration is killing Texas.
Now we come to Exhibit C...
Unfunded pension liabilities at the local and state levels present another huge problem that most Americans do not even know exists. Shad Rowe, the former chairman of the Texas Pension Review Board, calls it a “time bomb.” The people who should care are taxpayers, “but they don’t know anything about it,” Mr. Rowe said in an interview with the Dallas Morning News. A report released in March 2009 revealed that the Texas Teachers Retirement Fund had unfunded liabilities of more than $40 billion as a result of the stock-market and hedge-fund collapse of 2008.
To paraphrase the immortal words of Dan Ackroyd, Tom you ignorant slut. TRS has been underfunded since before the meltdown and credit crisis, mostly because the Republican lege hasn't paid it's share. Oh, and those cola's you're whining about also aren't the problem, at least in TRS where the beneficiaries haven't even received one since 1995, you scumbag. And keep in mind, MOST of the money in TRS came from educators. It's their money and your buddy 39%'s appointees went and lost a bunch of it, then blamed it first on 9/11 and now on the Bush Credit Crisis.
It's profoundly insulting, Tom, for you to blame the innocent retirees who have tried to block some of the more damaging decisions at TRS. Every teacher in this state deserves far more than we give them and all you stupid Republicans can do is think of how best to blame them for your screw ups and deny them the retirement benefits they've earned. Think I'm lying? Not so much, as it turns out.
I'll leave you with this bon mot
Our motto needs to be, “Let’s do more with less.”
No, our motto needs to be, "Let's stop listening to old, stupid asshats and put the economy back on a more traditional footing which allows everyone to prosper."
Go fuck yourself, Tom Pauken, you obnoxious, detestable piece of shit.
March 10, 2010
Ain't this just some bullshit
Apparently, there is some asinine petition from people calling themselves 'Senate Conservatives'. The first thing that told me this was a group of crazies is that they have selected for their leader well known liar and crazy deficit spender Sen. Jim DeMint.
The second thing was that they decided to endorse Michael Williams for Senator. Which is funny since he has absolutely no shot in hell since there will be some white Republican who will probably be their standard bearer. But enough about Elizabeth Ames Jones.
So, yeah, they're crazy. And their leader is saying this...
“Michael Williams is the Democrat Party’s worst nightmare. He’s a principled, outspoken conservative who will fight to stop the massive spending, bailouts and takeovers that have destroyed millions of jobs and piled a mountain of debt on our children and grandchildren,” said Senator DeMint.
Wait, wait, wait Senator DeMint. The country was losing jobs BEFORE President Obama took office. In fact, the economy you, your fellow Republicans and President W gave us was nothing more than a shell game with little job and wage growth, massive wealth concentration and, of course, a doubling of the national debt. The recession that was the direct result of Conservative folly (spending while cutting taxes on the rich and fuck the middle class) would have been a depression were it not for the Democrats and few Republicans who voted to save this nation, not let it sink into the oblivion. AND NOW YOU WANT TO BLAME YOUR MISTAKES ON DEMOCRATS??!?! Not so much, dickhead, but it's a super try. Oh, and Jim, it was President W that gave us TARP, not President Obama. Of course, left out of all this is the very real fact that TARP actually did help save us all from ruin.
In other news, 39% gave Senator Hutchison (whose campaign made Tony Sanchez look like the best.candidate.evah!) all the political cover she needed to stay in the Senate. Which sucks because that means three more years until we can finally get John Sharp sworn in.
Hey, if we have to have a conservative, let's at least have one that actually knows how to balance the books. It's clear Jim DeMint doesn't.
March 09, 2010
Here's Something You Don't Hear Every Day
From LaLa Land...
"Shutter Island" moviegoer stabbed in neck with meat thermometer after complaining about cellphone call
The theater was packed for a 9 p.m. Saturday screening of the Martin Scorsese horror movie when the victim complained about a woman near him who was using a cellphone during the show. She and two men with her left the movie theater. Two men returned a few minutes later and stabbed the victim, said sheriff's spokesman Steve Whitmore.
"It was vicious and cowardly attack," Whitmore said.
The victim, who was not identified, was hospitalized with serious injuries Two other moviegoers who came to the victim's aid were also were hurt during the fight, officials said.
The worst part about this is now TSA will probably ban meat thermometers from our carry-on luggage.
March 07, 2010
Roundin' up the TPA
From the Barnett Shale, TXsharon announces a new "Watchdog" for drillers and her SOS to EPA about benzene and other dangerous toxins in the Denton Creek Watershed was heard. The EPA has responded! Bluedaze: DRILLING REFORM FOR TEXAS
After the latest prevarication on her date of departure from the Senate, PDiddie at Brains and Eggs opines: "Kay Bailey, won't you please GO HOME?!"
SNOWMAGEDDON may have stricken Austin, Texas -- but don't let that cold, hard evidence convince you that global warming ain't real. Let Citizen Sarah (with a little help from President Obama) break it down for you at Texas Vox.
At WhosPlayin the recent discussion has centered around equity in the Lewisville ISD. It looks like the district may be taking a big step by considering a tear-down and rebuild of the district's oldest high school after costs for asbestos remediation and fire sprinkler installation in the old building went too high. Construction is not equity, though, and there are still issues to be addressed.
WCNews at Eye On Williamson has a round up of the campaign cash and who's giving in Williamson County, Bob Perry looms large in Williamson County GOP House races.
The Texas Cloverleaf looks at the early voting turnout in Denton County and the GOP surge.
This week on Left of College Station, Teddy makes the case for Brazos County Democrats to vote in the Republican primary, and releases the Left of College Station Democratic primary candidate endorsements. Left of College Station also covers the debate in the Texas A&M Student Senate over the anti-discrimination policy.
Pollchecker , over at TexasKaos calls out McCain on using Texas Health care as an example of "success". And he wonders why he is not president?
March 06, 2010
March 05, 2010
Things that make me happy
One thing and this is purely directed at you folks in CD 22 ... KESHA ROGERS? She's a Larouchebag!
March 02, 2010
Bob Perry finally gets what's coming to him
I'm marking this under This Week In Lawyerin' since we haven't had anything legal lately (which is exclusively the fault of our colleague, Harry Balczak, who is responsible for posts about legal issues especially if they involve fetish porn, hot dogs and improperly filed writs of mandamus) and this really does fit.
A jury has awarded the people who took on Bob Perry (because he built them a defective home) $7 million in actual damages and $40 million in punitive damages. Coby over at BAH has the full story. I'm just pleased to see a home builder finally taken to task for defective construction.
Congratulations to the Culls from everyone here at McBlogger!
Farouk is on Fiy-ah!
If the "Day without Mexicans is like a day without sunshine" remark was a Nine on the political embarrassment scale, Shami has finally managed to crank it up to Eleven.
March 01, 2010
Nothing like a swift kick in the ass from McB to make me push through a few more endorsements. Sorry if you've already voted, instead of waiting breathlessly for me to tell you what to do.
The State Board of Education has been a cluster of epic proportions since the Republican Party figured out it was a sleeper position no one paid attention to and took it over. Well, WE'RE PAYING ATTENTION NOW.
The 5th District is represented by a guy who believes dinosaurs were Jesus ponies, and he keeps telling people that kids aren't allowed to ask questions in science class. Had he ever been in a science class, he might know better. For the Democrats, there is a pile of candidates, and some of them are pretty good. But, since we have to pick one, I suggest Rebecca Bell-Metereau. She knows her stuff, she'll work effectively with the remainder of the Board, and will not be an embarrassment like the incumbent on his best day, even on her worst day. Let's try to get her out of this race without an expensive runoff, OK?
Wow. Some people just won't go away. Some people don't get that they are not good candidates, no matter what office they run for. This is why I suggest that all of you fine voters in Precinct 2 vote for Karin Crump. The backlog in that court is too hefty for us to waste time on a poor candidate with no legal training. No, you don't HAVE to be a lawyer to be on the JP Court Bench, but it's a good idea. Karin is smart, and will be an asset to the court that the Last Republican Standing has neglected so badly.
Pct 220 Chair
Once again, we're looking at a contested precinct chair race. What makes me think that Jan Soifer is a good candidate? She cares. It's not to say that Richard Anton (the incumbent) doesn't care. I believe he does. However, there's not a whole lot of moving and shaking going on in a precinct that has 1,771 registered voters, but only 289 ballots cast in the November 2008 election. Yes, there are a lot of precincts that did better, and a whole lot more that did worse. But Jan is actively campaigning for the job, so I think she should get the chance to prove what she can accomplish in the next two years.
Dregs : Did the NAACP ever get an apology, Kuff NAILS it and more
Sorry about my absence, at least the Mayor and Kroc have been keeping you all up to date on our candidate endorsements. Look out later today for a few more that I know Mojito will probably expand on...
Much like the Star-Telegram, it’s not really clear why they think he’s the better choice. I mean, the “Sure he’s an idiot, but he’ll have smart people around him so who cares if he doesn’t actually know what he’s doing” thing worked out so well with our last President, didn’t it?
After 20 years of amateur hour Commissioners at TDA, it's time for a professional. Even Kinky admits that's Hank Gilbert
Y'all have a goodun!
Party Resolutions: Waste of Time or Exercise in Futility?
You say you want a resolution
We-ell you know
We all want to change the world
And what better way to change the world than showing up at your precinct convention Tuesday evening and passing a bunch of resolutions exhorting your party to support this and that? To tell the truth, practically anything else this side of holding up signs in congressional hearings while dressed like a clown, but that won't plenty of earnest party activists from climbing the first step in the great Resolution Process. The next step, of course comes later in March at the County Conventions, when the resolutions passed at the lower level will again be debated and, should they pass muster, be delivered into the hands of the high and mighty State Convention for consideration at the most exalted level. And from here? Well, nothing much.
See, party resolutions are a lot like writing letters to Santa Claus. Except in this case there's no chance the parental units will sneak a peek and discover the unsettling news you'd prefer a set of Ninja throwing stars instead of that lame Easy Bake Oven.
Oh, I hear some ask, can you really be so cynical? After all, didn't Abraham Lincoln say all politics is local? Or was it Joey Bishop? Well, to be honest, this scarcely scratches the surface of my cynicism. But as Pliny the Elder wrote, "Don't hate the playa, hate the game." So in the spirit of unity I again offer the official McBlogger Precinct Resolution:
SUPPORTING FREE CHIPS AND SALSA
WHEREAS the cuisine known as "Tex-Mex" is one of the crowning cultural glories of the Great State of Texas, and
WHEREAS the provision of chips and salsa is an essential part of the ambiance of the Tex-Mex restaurant dining experience, encouraging conviviality and promoting the consumption of refreshing beverages, and
WHEREAS there has been a trend at some establishments to charge for chips and salsa, thereby eroding our traditions and promoting a fast-food mentality among patrons;
NOW, THEREFOR BE IT RESOLVED that the State of Texas recognize the inalienable right of access to free chips and salsa for patrons of Tex-Mex restaurants, and that the Texas Legislature be directed to support this right by appropriate legislation.
Adopted by Precinct #__________in Senatorial District # __________of ____________County, Texas, on March 2, 2010.
Precinct Convention Secretary__________________________
For your convenience, you can download a PDF here.
Finally, I'd like to point out to the Republicans who read this blog (yes, we know you're out there and, thanks to the just-renewed Patriot Act Comrade Obama has your IP addresses) that there's nothing in the way this resolution is written that would prevent it from being introduced at your precinct conventions. After all, chips and salsa is not a party issue, they're a fundamental right we share as Texans.
So, if you must, have at it.
Abandon the creeping meatball!
¡Hasta la victoria siempre!
¡Salsa o muerte!