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Profile Information

Gender: Male
Hometown: South Texas. most of my life I lived in Austin and Dallas
Home country: United States
Current location: Bryan, Texas
Member since: Sun Aug 14, 2011, 03:57 AM
Number of posts: 85,724

About Me

Middle-aged white guy who believes in justice and equality for all. Math and computer analyst with additional 21st century jack-of-all-trades skills. I'm a stud, not a dud!

Journal Archives

Marlin police chief shot in head, in critical condition

Marlin Police Chief Darrell Allen was in critical condition at Baylor Scott & White Hospital in Temple on Sunday with a gunshot wound to the head suffered while he was working as security at a bar in Temple.

A news release by Temple Police Sgt. Allen Teston said Allen was in “critical but stable” condition.

Initial reports said he was in surgery, but an updated statement at 12:42 p.m. said the treatment plan had changed and he was not in surgery.

Teston said Allen was working as uniformed security at the Laid Back Lounge II at 301 W. Ave. B in Temple when police responded to a call about an officer being shot there at 1:22 a.m. Sunday.

Read more: http://www.wacotrib.com/news/police/marlin-police-chief-shot-in-head-in-critical-condition/article_5fc6be72-145d-5756-8d22-17fd1077dfe3.html
Posted by TexasTowelie | Mon Nov 2, 2015, 06:20 AM (3 replies)

Longview ISD superintendent's retirement planning business banned

LONGVIEW -- Since taking the top job in Longview ISD, Superintendent James Wilcox has had a side business selling what he calls retirement planning to educators. As of this week, however, he and his representatives won't be peddling their products on Longview ISD campuses.

After representatives from Primerica — a company some say is essentially a pyramid scheme — made their pitch Oct. 22 at Longview High School, the district's school board directed Wilcox to "not allow any meetings of this type on any LISD property in that future," Wilcox said last week.

"That will be fully complied with in the future," he said.

A portion of the district's employee policy manual seems to prohibit such an on-campus sales pitch, but Longview ISD board President Chris Mack said last week he didn't see anything wrong with the company's services being sold on district property. The manual, however, prohibits employees from using their position with the district "to attempt to sell products or services."

The board made its decision, Mack said, not because of its policy but after hearing an uproar from the community.

[font color=330099]I wonder how many employees were intimidated into participating in the plan and if the Ponzi scheme will collapse now that the rug has been pulled out?[/font]
Posted by TexasTowelie | Mon Nov 2, 2015, 05:46 AM (0 replies)

Anti-Gay Texas State Lawmaker: Marriage Equality Doesn’t Exist

Anti-gay Texas Tea Party state Rep. Cecil Bell is in serious denial about same-sex marriage.

During a panel discussion in Austin last month, Bell claimed that despite the U.S. Supreme Court's ruling in Obergefell v. Hodges, marriage equality doesn't exist in Texas.

Bell, (R-Magnolia), the author of failed legislation seeking to undermine the high court's ruling, has also called for the impeachment of justices who were in the majority. He made the comments in response to a question about why he doesn't consider Obergefell to be the law of the land.

“In fact, our Constitution has in place provisions that say the court cannot make law," Bell said. "So, the very laws that you’re talking about enforcing don’t exist, and the Supreme Court cannot create those laws. In order for a clerk in Texas or in any other state to have the legal authority to issue a same-sex marriage license, the state Legislature will have to act to affirm that legal right. Otherwise we have granted to the federal court system through the Supreme Court or a lower federal court the lawmaking provisions that are specifically withheld from the court.”

Read more: http://www.thenewcivilrightsmovement.com/texas_state_rep_cecil_bell_says_marriage_equality_doesn_t_exist?recruiter_id=838695
Posted by TexasTowelie | Mon Nov 2, 2015, 05:18 AM (1 replies)

New York City school bus workers authorize strike action

Bus drivers and attendants in New York City, determined to resist the assault on their wages and benefits, voted in recent weeks to authorize strike action against two school bus contractors.

The authorization votes were approved a week ago by 94 percent of workers at Pioneer Transportation Corporation and a month ago by 96 percent at Consolidated Bus Transit, which includes the companies of Boro Transit, SNT, and ANJ. Together the companies employ more than 1,800 workers out of a total school bus workforce of nearly 9,000.

The overwhelming approval of strike action, less than two years after a month-long work stoppage, reflects immense anger among workers over devastating givebacks, including cuts to health care, elimination of holiday pay and revised work rules to effectively force overtime without additional pay.

School bus companies pushed through these cuts in the aftermath of the 2013 strike, abetted by the Amalgamated Transit Union Local 1181. The union was forced to call a strike in response to mass opposition to then-mayor Michael Bloomberg’s plan to eliminate job protections for workers (known as Employee Protection Provisions, or EPP) and open up school bus routes to the lowest bidder.

Read more: https://www.wsws.org/en/articles/2015/11/02/nybu-n02.html
Posted by TexasTowelie | Mon Nov 2, 2015, 04:42 AM (0 replies)

Kansas City GM workers first to vote against UAW sellout deal

Workers at the General Motors Fairfax Assembly plant in Kansas City, Kansas have voted decisively against the tentative agreement reached by the United Auto Workers. It was the first vote on the four-year deal that will cover 53,000 GM workers nationwide.

In a rebuke to the UAW, which sought to ram through the deal only two days after releasing the details of the agreement, 63 percent of production workers and 67 percent of skilled trade workers voted “no” on Friday and Saturday. The factory, which produces the Chevrolet Malibu and Buick LaCrosse models, employs 3,230 workers.

Well aware that a snap vote would incite opposition from rank-and-file workers, the UAW nevertheless opted for this strategy because UAW President Dennis Williams, Vice President Cindy Estrada & Co. know that the more time that workers have to study the deal, the more time they will have to build opposition. Votes at the rest of the GM plants are expected to be concluded this week.

The vote by the Kansas City workers has thrown the UAW apparatus into a crisis, and it is now redoubling its efforts to lie and threaten workers to get the deal through. In a message to Fairfax workers, UAW Local 31 President Vicki Hale wrote that union officials from across the US held a conference call after the “no” vote. Top UAW executives told Hale and other local officers that if workers defeated the contract nationwide there would be no alternative but to strike, adding that such a walkout “absolutely does not guarantee further gains.”

Read more: https://www.wsws.org/en/articles/2015/11/02/auto-n02.html
Posted by TexasTowelie | Mon Nov 2, 2015, 04:40 AM (0 replies)

Our liberation is bound together

Keeanga-Yamahtta Taylor, author of the forthcoming From #BlackLivesMatter to Black Liberation, looks at the sources of Black power, in an article published at Jacobin.

ON APRIL 12, 1865, the American Civil War officially came to end when the Union Army accepted the unconditional surrender of the Confederacy on the steps of a courthouse in Appomattox, Virginia. The Union Army, led by 200,000 Black soldiers, had destroyed the institution of slavery; as a result of their victory, Black people were now to be no longer property but citizens of the United States.

The Civil Rights Act of 1866, the first declaration of civil rights in the United States, stated that:

citizens of every race and color, without regard to any previous condition of slavery or involuntary servitude, shall have the same right, in every State and Territory in the United States...to full and equal benefit of all laws and proceedings for the security of person and property, as is enjoyed by white citizens.

There was no ambiguity that the war had buried chattel slavery once and for all. Days after the surrender of the Confederacy, Abraham Lincoln rode into Richmond, Virginia, the former capital of the slaveholders, where he stood upon the stairs of the former Confederate capitol building and told a large gathering crowd of Black people days into their freedom:

In reference to you, colored people, let me say God has made you free. Although you have been deprived of your God-given rights by your so-called Masters, you are now as free as I am, and if those that claim to be your superiors do not know that you are free, take the sword and bayonet and teach them that you are--for God created all men free, giving to each the same rights of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.

Read more: http://socialistworker.org/2015/11/02/our-liberation-is-bound-togeth
Posted by TexasTowelie | Mon Nov 2, 2015, 04:18 AM (4 replies)

In Red River Dispute, "A Cloud Over This Land"

Decades after Tommy Henderson first asked the federal government to return land in Texas along the Red River that his family had tended since the early days of the Civil War, a funny thing happened: The feds finally obliged.

On the steps of the Clay County courthouse in late July, a U.S. Bureau of Land Management official proudly handed over — with firm handshakes, signatures and all — about 95 acres that the feds had called their own.

“You’ve been waiting a long time for this day, which is the patenting of your land, your private land,” said Steve Tryon, an agency field manager, according to a Texas Farm Bureau video recording of the meeting.

Boy, did Henderson wait. For nearly half his 62 years, his frustrating chapter went unresolved in the squabble-filled history of the Red River, the changing path of which has blurred property lines for at least a century.

Read more: http://www.texastribune.org/2015/11/01/red-river-reunion-95-acres-court-took/
Posted by TexasTowelie | Mon Nov 2, 2015, 03:59 AM (0 replies)

In a First, Pro-Bush Super PAC Books Airtime in Texas

A super PAC supporting former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush has booked airtime for the Texas primary, making it the first known group backing a 2016 presidential candidate to officially move toward TV advertising in the Lone Star State.

This week, Right to Rise USA reserved a week's worth of airtime in February in the Lone Star State, according to Paul Lindsay, a spokesman for the super PAC. The $6.1 million buy is part of a previously announced plan by the group to spend $16.8 million on TV advertising in some states that hold their primaries in March.

The super PAC, which reported raising more than $103 million in the first half of the year, has billed the cluster of initial buys as the "first significant investments in the March states from any campaign or super PAC." Lindsay said the reservations are part of a "long-term plan to tell the story about Jeb's conservative record and his plans to disrupt the old order in Washington."

Although the GOP field is giving Texas ample attention with regular fundraisers and occasional campaign events, no major organization supporting a White House hopeful besides the pro-Bush super PAC has gone public yet with plans for TV advertising in the state. Earlier this month, the campaign of retired neurosurgeon Ben Carson began reserving airtime for the March 1 primaries, though a spokesman said the strategy included all states voting that day except Texas.

Read more: http://www.texastribune.org/2015/11/01/first-pro-bush-super-pac-books-airtime-texas/
Posted by TexasTowelie | Mon Nov 2, 2015, 03:48 AM (0 replies)

Media Beef Still Sizzling, Cruz Takes Reporters Hunting

AKRON, Iowa — After a week in which his disdain for the so-called “mainstream media” reached new heights, Ted Cruz came here Saturday to do what any presidential candidate would do: go hunting with a bunch of unarmed journalists.

“This is how I like reporters,” the Texas Republican senator joked as he set out on a search for pheasant, a Beretta Silver Pigeon II 12-gauge shotgun slung over his shoulder. “It would make gaggles very different if you just had a double-barrel shotgun — ‘I’m sorry. Repeat that question again?’”

A couple of hours later, Cruz returned to the Hole N’ The Wall Lodge with two dead pheasants — and just as many journalists as he left with. In a post-hunt debriefing, Cruz made sure to specify that no reporters were shot. "So it was a good day," he added.

Despite Cruz's jokes, serious frustrations have been brewing in the wake of the third Republican presidential debate, during which several campaigns believed their candidates received unfair treatment from moderators eager to whip up conflict. Cruz raised a vocal objection during the debate, tearing into CNBC hosts for running the show like a “cage match,” lamenting that the questions showed why Americans do not trust the media and imploring the moderators to strive for a more substantive discussion.

Read more: http://www.texastribune.org/2015/10/31/media-beef-still-sizzling-cruz-takes-reporters-hun/
Posted by TexasTowelie | Mon Nov 2, 2015, 03:43 AM (8 replies)

Texas colleges could land in court over designated 'gun-free' classes

AUSTIN — Religious Studies 375. “What Is Religion?” Three credit hours. No firearms allowed.

That kind of course-catalog listing might not be so farfetched for Texas’ public colleges and universities, as school leaders move closer to implementing the state’s contentious campus carry law.

Starting next fall, licensed Texans will be able to carry concealed handguns into buildings at four-year public universities. And while public schools can’t totally opt out of campus carry, as private ones can, they may carve out “reasonable” gun-free zones.

The discretion — part of a compromise late in the Legislature’s session that helped the bill pass — has injected uncertainty over how far schools can stretch those bounds. And as lawmakers keep a close eye on how universities proceed, some have speculated that campus carry could end up in court.

Read more: http://www.dallasnews.com/news/state/headlines/20151101-texas-colleges-could-land-in-court-over-designated-gun-free-classes.ece
Posted by TexasTowelie | Mon Nov 2, 2015, 02:32 AM (0 replies)
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