Tuesday, November 18, 2014
TPA - Progressives looking around, looking forward, fighting voter apathy
The Texas Progressive Alliance continues to look forward as it brings you this week's roundup.
Off the Kuff looks at some pro- and anti-equality bills that were pre-filed for the 2015 Legislature.
Libby Shaw writing for Texas Kaos and for Daily Kos notes that although the Republican voter suppression efforts had its intended effect of keeping so many of us away from the polls, Texas Democrats share some of the blame for voter apathy. Voter Suppression did the Trick in Texas.
Evidence from around the country emerged in the wake of the 2014 election drubbing that change is going to have to come to the Democratic Party from both within and without. PDiddie at Brains and Eggs understood early on that if they cannot regain relevance in midterm elections, then we are all destined to ride the partisan see-saw every two years... and let gridlock reign.
Social Media has been great at blowing up narratives generated from republican think tanks and published in mainstream newspapers, magazines and TV Shows. CouldBeTrue of South Texas Chisme wants to help: No, the new set of Republicans in Congress aren't less crazy and more pragmatic than Todd Akin or Sharron Angle.
From WCNews at Eye on Williamson. One more time on some post-election commentary, Williamson Democrats, Battleground Texas, And The Way Forward.
Neil at All People Have Value said that there is not very much to say. APHV is part of NeilAquino.com.
Texas Leftist offers an insider's view of Battleground Texas... What went right, what went wrong and how the organization moves forward from here. Square one?? Get to know Texas, and don't mess with what already works.
Easter Lemming, in one of his rare and even popular posts outside of Facebook, covers a Republican blogger who shows how the Republican victories of 2014 set them up for defeat in 2016. There is a Democratic state firewall that would be almost impossible for Republicans to breach to get the presidency and the only question is how many seats will the GOP lose in the Senate and House. Easter Lemming now mainly posts on his Easter Lemming News Facebook page.
And here are some posts of interest from other Texas blogs.
Concerned Citizens scouts out the San Antonio Mayoral race.
Lone Star Q has a surprising report about Westboro Baptist's involvement in the recent Houston anti-gay protests.
Nonsequiteuse examines the cult of Mommy and the cult of the fetus.
Unfair Park wants to know why Ted Cruz wants to slow down their Netxflix streaming.
Texas Watch is hiring.
Juanita relates the worst Veterans' Day story ever.
Scott Braddock documents a teabagger slap fight in North Texas.
Fred Lewis sums up the evidence that wasn't presented at the San Jacinto waste pits trial. Gary Permalink on 11/18/2014
Sunday, November 16, 2014
Republican political analyst sees 2016 GOP loss ahead after 2014 campaigns
The Republican centrist blogger in Houston sees little chance for the Republican party in 2016. They have gone too extreme in attempts to be very appealing to Older Rural White Evangelical Male voters. There is a Democratic state firewall that would be almost impossible for Republicans to breach to get the presidency and the only question is how many seats will the GOP lose in the Senate and House.
One of my most popular posts recently.
Gary Permalink on 11/16/2014
Sunday, November 09, 20140 comments
Friday, October 17, 2014
Electoral-vote.com is recommended for Senate races
Electoral-vote.com has a lot of experience in presidential elections and Senate race tracking. Highly recommended site. Gary Permalink on 10/17/2014
Sunday, March 09, 2014
Fortunately for Texas Democrats the Loudest Republican Voices are Extremists
Not the typical Texas Republican behavior, the more moderate choice won two GOP races.
Falkenberg: Was Tuesday a victory for inclusion? http://www.houstonchronicle.com/news/columnists/falkenberg/article/Falkenberg-Was-Tuesday-a-victory-for-inclusion-5295690.php
Democrats have broad principles they stand for and tolerate a wide range of beliefs, so much so some call it the Disorganized Party. They prefer the Party of Inclusiveness.
Sent from my iPhone
Gary Permalink on 3/09/2014
Thursday, March 06, 2014
Texas Tribune lousy Internet poll meats reality, which mugs it and mugs for the cameras
Here is the summary of the criticism of the poll and the Texas Tribune. With bonus comments about Plutocrats Broadcasting Service and the Nice Polite Republicans on the radio.
Texas GOP now looks like Gohmert
Booman Tribune ~ A Progressive Community
What a disaster for the Texas GOP and the nation as every Republican candidate moved to the right.
Gary Permalink on 3/06/2014
Wednesday, March 05, 2014
Should You Vote For Kinky?
So- I wrote to Kinky Friedman's campaign. asked them WHY precisely i (or anyone) should vote for Kinky for Ag Commissioner - I wanted to share what I got back-
These are all valid questions that one should ask. Please allow me to respond. Kinky never supported Rick Perry, and he never will. When asked by the Daily Beast to write a puff piece and say something positive about Perry, Kinky rather naively allowed that under certain circumstances he might could vote for the guy, all in good humor. To this day, Kinky will swear to you that he never gave Perry an endorsement, despite what is said on the net. Knowing how much he dislikes the soon-to-be-ex-governor, we over here know this to be the truth.
We would never want to dissuade you from voting your conscience, may it be Hogan or anybody, for that matter. However, we would ask that you take a closer look at Kinky's platform to see that hemp/pot is not his sole issue. Firstly, the legalization and cultivation of hemp is an environmental issue, a border issue, an education funding issue, a criminal justice issue and a personal freedoms issue. It is much more than a one-note recreational issue.
But it's not the only issue Kinky has taken on. He has a plan for water conservation that involves several points of attack. He sees a ten fold increase in water harvesting, development of El Paso-style groundwater desalination plants throughout the state, grants for individuals who return their lawns to indigenous ground cover, and, most importantly amending or eliminating the rule of capture in Texas and forming a state level water conservation board comprised of existing regional water authorities.
He has a plan for issuing grants for more family farms, focusing on organic farming, with the intent of using these locally grown organic foods for school lunch programs, which he intends to expand.
He will also issue increasing numbers of department grants for wind farms throughout west Texas.
He even has a strategy for feral hogs, the bane of so many farmers.
Still it does come back to hemp, which we see as the next great Texas cash crop, one that can totally replace cotton, which uses more water, produces less fiber and requires 25% of the world's pesticides (remember: hemp uses none). Right now, in drought conditions, this is to what most farmers and ranchers are responding. They want the opportunity.
Thanks for you time. Persuaded even a little bit?
Your alternative is to vote for an insurance salesman who does not campaign except for inside his home and attributes his coming in first in the Democratic Primary to God.
Democratic Mystery Man.
I talked to Hogan today, and he attributes his victory to the Almighty.
Gary Permalink on 3/05/2014
Sunday, November 10, 2013
Read and Watch The Supporters
To Dan Rather:
I had always wanted to thank Dan Rather for convincing me not only did Oswald not act alone but there was a conspiracy to convince us he did decades ago.
This was on his news special after doubts were becoming widespread. His debunking included a recreation of the shooting. The expert marksman with a good rifle and a proper scope was able to hit the target in the time given.
But Oswald was a terrible shot, had a crap rifle, had a misaligned scope, two shots were too close together, and the marksman was only able to hit the broadside of the target, not the silhouette of the man on the target. But Dan Rather told us this should convince us Oswald could had done it "because he was shooting at the President." WTF!?
Following this I always made it a practice to read or watch supporters of the establishment against a controversial theory to see what BS they were pushing to convince the people. Gerald Posner's Case Closed book on the JFK assassination is even more convincing in leading a skeptical reader to the opposite conclusion of what he tries so desperately to draw.
Thank you, Dan Rather for making me never look at what the news media was trying to sell me in the same way again. Unlike with Possner, who I found had close ties to conservatives in the intelligence community, I always felt that you were just doing your job and sometimes just following orders. Later they kicked you out when you did not follow orders.Gary Permalink on 11/10/2013
Gerald Posner, failed but very well-paid JFK conspiracy debunker, was later exposed as a serial plagiarist and he lost his journalism job. His ties to the conservative intelligence community got him another job at what he does best. He is running PR for crooked Afghanistan President Karzai’s family.
For more see ASSASSINATION BY OMISSION: ANOTHER LOOK AT SERIAL PLAGIARIST GERALD POSNER By Mike Golden.
Thursday, August 22, 2013
Moved to Facebook
As most people know nearly all posts now are on a Facebook Page.
Easter Lemming Liberal News.
Gary Permalink on 8/22/2013
Thursday, August 01, 2013
Local politics - Pasadena's authoritarian mayor at it again.
Pretty much at the last minute Mayor Isbell remembered there is an election in November open for Pasadena and the city could use some more money raised via bonds. While he was at it he realized he could correct a few other political problems. He now only has four YES mayor votes on council and a few decisions have come down 5-4 in his favor but a couple of his supporters seats aren't safe.
He rushed and placed a crony stacked commission he thinks will do his bidding and then is about the only person in Pasadena who proposes charter amendments, his proposals to change things to fix his political problems.
His biggest idea is to redistrict again, again placing opponents in the same district but this time the excuse is to create two at-large positions. These at-large positions would be dominated by the well-off and frequent voters from South Pasadena, his power base. He also had ideas on how to make it harder to run by massively increasing filing fees or required signatures, requiring longer residence in district, etc.
Well, surprise, in a show of independence the commission is not going to give the autocratic mayor everything he wants.
From The Pasadena Citizen July 30, 2013:
“Some will be happy. Some won’t be happy. We obviously didn’t do everything the Mayor (Johnny Isbell) wanted,” Mease told The Citizen on Tuesday morning.
The City Council is way underpaid, which makes running a city wide campaign a hobby for the rich, much like the part-time mayor's position who at least is well-paid for his time away from his businesses.
Gary Permalink on 8/01/2013
Tuesday, July 23, 2013
Read, share and recommend The Unvarnished New Testament
Read, share and recommend The Unvarnished New Testament
A lot of our problems today are Christians with bad Bibles. A good beginning is to remove the ages of traditional gloss from the words of the Bible and get back to the simple unadorned Greek words.
Gary Permalink on 7/23/2013
Friday, July 19, 2013
Pro-life bill naive and dangerous to women
This is hidden behind a subscriber wall. In the interests of education and debate I am posting the complete column.
Abortion bill will force women into the shadows
By Lisa Falkenberg
“"Yes. I do want to end abortion," state Sen. Dan Patrick told a Houston Chronicle reporter Thursday.
And with those words, Patrick, the father of the infamous sonogram bill and recently announced GOP candidate for lieutenant governor, confirmed the real motivation behind legislation the Senate considers today to drastically restrict abortion rights in Texas.
Of course, Patrick was quick to follow up, for cover-your-butt purposes in case of future litigation: "This bill is not about that."
I suppose the bill isn't about the good senator's political prospects, either.
But Patrick's comment confirmed something else: the tragic futility of the "pro-life" movement. In reality, almost every single one of us would like to end abortion, or, more accurately, the circumstances and tragedies that lead to abortion.
We'd love to live in a world where every pregnancy is planned, every baby is wanted and healthy and loved enough to thrive in this hard world.
We live in reality, though. And the reality is this: No law, no vote-hungry politician, no movement of well-meaning citizens (and yes, I do believe most of the pro-lifers are well meaning), will ever end abortion.
A pastor who attended the Austin news conference where Patrick made his remarks was quoted saying "abortion began in Texas, and I pray it ends in Texas." Of course, abortion didn't begin in Texas. It was legal in some states years before the landmark 1973 Texas case Roe v. Wade legalized abortion nationwide. But as long as there has been sex, there has been unplanned pregnancy. And as long as there has been unplanned pregnancy, there has been abortion.
Our best hope is to keep it safe, legal and rare.
Heading to disaster
Bills like the one Patrick and other GOP leaders are pushing threaten that endeavor to its core. Instead of supporting legislation that could really reduce abortions - by, say, adequately funding family planning services so poor women have access to birth control - so-called pro-lifers pursue an agenda that chips away at rights intended to protect women.
Let me step back. With this column, I'm breaking an important rule never to address the fundamental merits of abortion rights. After all, we had that debate 40 years ago, didn't we? And the highest court in the land deemed abortion a constitutional right of all U.S. women. But another reason I avoid it is because the debate itself is futile. If you feel strongly about it, you can't be swayed. This column won't change your mind.
Most people don't pick a side based on logic, or even information. They decide based on their gut, their emotions. Some are convinced by testimonials like the kind we've heard recently in legislative committee hearings from women who regretted their abortions and experienced trauma afterward. Some are compelled by religion or personal circumstances or by images of vulnerable, though not-yet-viable fetuses.
And many of us who believe in abortion rights are not unmoved by all of this. We are not comfortable with the idea of aborting a 20-week pregnancy, even if the fetus hasn't yet reached viability. We can count the fingers, same as anyone.
But we also know Republican lawmakers won't stop with 20 weeks. Next time, it will be 18 weeks. And then 16. And we know that criminalizing abortion, or restricting access to it, won't alleviate the trauma. It will create more. It may send a desperate woman to the border to buy abortion pills in open-air markets. It won't save the fetus. It may just cost the mother her own life if she's desperate enough to turn to the back alley for help.
In 1965, illegal abortion accounted for 17 percent of all "reported" deaths attributed to pregnancy and childbirth that year; the actual percentage was much higher, according to the Guttmacher Institute. And in the early 1970s many women had to travel thousands of miles to other states for abortions, risking the women's health and resulting in later-term abortions. After abortion was legalized, women's deaths plummeted and the proportion of abortions done early in the first trimester rose dramatically.
No gray area
Over the past couple of weeks, I've read so many emails, fielded so many questions about how I can believe the way I do on this issue. They see the issue in black and white. Life and death. And they can't see the gray.
Here's the gray. As a mother of two beautiful daughters, I have marveled at those sonogram images with tears in my eyes. I have strained to count the fingers and make out the grainy faces. I was so blessed that my girls were both born healthy, blessed that they were planned, blessed that I have a loving, supportive husband to help me raise them, blessed that we have jobs that enable us to care for, feed and clothe them.
Not everyone is so blessed. And for those women, there should be a choice. And it should be hers, her family's, and her God's - not her government's.
The pro-life goal of "ending abortion" is noble, but also naive and dangerous. It won't save babies; it will endanger the health of mothers who will be forced into the shadows to access their right to choose.” Gary Permalink on 7/19/2013
Sunday, July 14, 2013
Delusions of Populism - NYTimes.com
The GOP has hit upon a new slogan and a new metaphor to get more working class white voters - Libertarian Populism. It's bunk but has a lot of appeal to mainly rural mainly young voters who have been bombarded with stories for years to hate and distrust government.
Friday, June 28, 2013
Another End of Crawfish Season
Saying goodbye to crawfish season at Wild Cajun | 29-95 | a Chron.com blog
You can also catch these at Baytown Seafood - the seasoning is a bit different.
Gary Permalink on 6/28/2013
TIME Magazine Just Doubled-Down on Joe Klein’s Inaccurate, Anti-Atheist Statements
TIME Magazine Just Doubled-Down on Joe Klein’s Inaccurate, Anti-Atheist Statements
Joe Klein has always been overrated and a liar.Gary Permalink on 6/28/2013