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TexasTowelie

Profile Information

Gender: Male
Hometown: Texas
Home country: United States
Current location: Red Hell Texas
Member since: Sun Aug 14, 2011, 03:57 AM
Number of posts: 76,962

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

Abortion hearing underway, 1,900 signed up (in Texas House)

Source: Austin American-Statesman

More than 1,600 people have signed up to testify on a sweeping abortion bill before the House State Affairs Committee, and another 300 signed within a half-hour of the hearing’s start shortly after 3:30 p.m.

The line into the small hearing room began forming before 9 a.m., and by 3 p.m. several hundred people packed the hallway, hoping for a spot in the 100-seat hearing room. Most were turned away, finding spots in one of nine hearing rooms that were opened for overflow crowds in the Capitol Extension.

Emergency crews were called to the room when a woman in line fainted, prompting frantic calls for people in line to back up and give her some air. Paramedics took her away in a rolling gurney.

Rep. Jessica Farrar, D-Houston, asked why the hearing was being held in such a small room.

Read more: http://www.statesman.com/news/news/abortion-hearing-underway-1900-signed-up/nYcHH/

Abortion hearing underway in Texas House, 2,300 signed up (updated 7:10)

More than 1,600 people have signed up to testify on a sweeping abortion bill before the House State Affairs Committee, and another 300 signed within a half-hour of the hearing’s start shortly after 3:30 p.m.

The line into the small hearing room began forming before 9 a.m., and by 3 p.m. several hundred people packed the hallway, hoping for a spot in the 100-seat hearing room. Most were turned away, finding spots in one of nine hearing rooms that were opened for overflow crowds in the Capitol Extension.

Emergency crews were called to the room when a woman in line fainted, prompting frantic calls for people in line to back up and give her some air. Paramedics took her away in a rolling gurney.

Rep. Jessica Farrar, D-Houston, asked why the hearing was being held in such a small room.

More at http://www.statesman.com/news/news/abortion-hearing-underway-1900-signed-up/nYcHH/ .
Posted by TexasTowelie | Tue Jul 2, 2013, 06:53 PM (5 replies)

Rep. Vela: Senate immigration bill too heavy on enforcement; resigns from Cong. Hispanic Caucus


Rep. Filemon Vela, D-Brownville

WASHINGTON - A South Texas congressman resigned from the Congressional Hispanic Caucus in protest of the group's embrace of a Senate immigration bill that contains millions of dollars for drones, fences and border agents, officials said Tuesday.

Rep. Filemon Vela, D-Brownsville, announced his decision to resign in a short email over the weekend following Senate approval.

Vela said he was concerned that the bill conditions a pathway to citizenship for people living in the country illegally on militarization of the border, including additional hundreds of miles of border fence.

“I hereby resign,” Vela said.

More at http://www.mysanantonio.com/news/politics/article/S-Texas-congressman-Senate-immigration-bill-too-4642598.php
Posted by TexasTowelie | Tue Jul 2, 2013, 02:01 PM (0 replies)

Commentary: China is not the problem for U.S.

By Joseph S. Nye Jr./Special to The Washington Post
Nye is a professor at Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government.

In the last century, the United States rose from the status of second-tier power to being the world’s sole superpower. Some worry that the United States will be eclipsed in this century by China, but that is not the problem.

There is never just one possible outcome. Instead, there are always a range of possibilities, particularly regarding political change in China. Aside from the political uncertainties, China’s size and high rate of economic growth will almost certainly increase its strength in relation to the United States. But even when China becomes the world’s largest economy, it will lag decades behind the United States in per-capita income, which is a better measure of an economy’s sophistication. Moreover, given our energy resources, the U.S. economy will be less vulnerable than the Chinese economy to external shocks.

Growth will bring China closer to the United States in power resources, but as Singapore’s former prime minister Lee Kwan Yew has noted, that does not necessarily mean that China will surpass the United States as the world’s most powerful country. Even if China suffers no major domestic political setbacks, projections based on growth in gross domestic product alone ignore U.S. military and “soft power” advantages as well as China’s geopolitical disadvantages in the Asian balance of power.

The U.S. culture of openness and innovation will keep this country central in an information age in which networks supplement, if not fully replace, hierarchical power. The United States is well positioned to benefit from such networks and alliances if our leaders follow smart strategies. In structural terms, it matters that the two entities with per-capita income and sophisticated economies similar to that of the United States — Europe and Japan — are both allied with the United States. In terms of balances-of-power resources, that makes a large difference for the net position of American power, but only if U.S. leaders maintain the alliances and institutional cooperation. In addition, in a more positive sum view of power with, rather than over, other countries, Europe and Japan provide the largest pools of resources for dealing with common transnational problems.

More at http://www.santafenewmexican.com/opinion/commentary/article_e84be31e-3a41-5fa1-b0e1-af474329da8f.html .
Posted by TexasTowelie | Tue Jul 2, 2013, 05:09 AM (2 replies)

Teachers union sues state for $200 million; second $65 million suit possible

The Louisiana Association of Educators and several local teachers associations have filed a class-action suit charging that the state owes local school boards $199 million as a result of the Louisiana Supreme Court decision striking down part of the state's voucher law. The St. John the Baptist Parish School Board joined as the lead plaintiff in the suit, which was filed Friday in the 19th Judicial District Court in Baton Rouge.

In addition, the Louisiana School Boards Association is considering filing suit for about $65 million, association Director Scott Richard said.

The union's lawsuit draws on the part of the high court's decision that invalidated the 2012-13 Minimum Foundation Program formula, which determines how much money per student that the state pays to local school systems. The court ruled that MFP funding must go to public schools, whereas the 2012-13 formula directed some money to private schools via Louisiana's voucher program.

Two weeks after the court's ruling, the Legislature rejected the proposed 2013-14 funding formula due to unpopular changes in special education calculations. So the state reverted to the most recent valid formula -- in this case, lawmakers determined, the 2011-12 version.

More at http://www.nola.com/education/index.ssf/2013/07/teachers_union_sues_state_for.html#incart_river_default .
Posted by TexasTowelie | Tue Jul 2, 2013, 04:55 AM (0 replies)

The Bright Light Social Hour Opens for Natalie Maines and Wendy Davis at #SWTW Rally

Wendy Davis may have been the headliner for today's Stand With Texas Women rally at the Capitol, but she wasn't the only rock star to grace the stage.

Before Natalie Maines of the Dixie Chicks sung the national anthem and fan favorite "Not Ready to Make Nice," local band and 2011 Austin Music Awards "Band of the Year" The Bright Light Social Hour kicked off the show.

The band had witnessed Davis' filibuster and were so inspired they went right back home to their studio and recorded the track, aptly named "Wendy Davis". The video is a montage of themselves in the studio and the folks in the Capitol rotunda decked out in orange chanting the only word of the song -- "Wendy."

One of the rally's organizers saw the video and reached out to the band to see if they'd want to kick things off. By that time the video had over 5,000 views and the name "Wendy" was the hottest thing on the internet. Luckily the band was available to play a short set for the thousands who showed up just before the noontime program got underway.

More at http://www.burntorangereport.com/diary/13733/the-bright-light-social-hour-opens-for-natalie-maines-and-wendy-davis-at-swtw-rally !

[font color=green]Okay folks, I brought the BLSH to DU in January 2013 with the following thread:
http://www.democraticunderground.com/1034937

The guitar player, Curtis Roush and the bass player, Jack O'Brien are Southwestern University alums. Hopefully, they partially offset some of the other SU alums on the wingnut side of politics such as US Rep. Pete Sessions and Texas Rep. Debbie Riddle.

You go guys and I'll see you next time at the barber.
Posted by TexasTowelie | Tue Jul 2, 2013, 12:38 AM (3 replies)

Houston biking group eyes future amid growth, complaints


Photo: Mayra Beltran, Houston Chronicle

On the last Friday of every month, Houston bicyclists meet at Market Square park to take part in Critical Mass, an informal bike ride that happens among different groups all over the world.

The size of the last ride was the talk of the town on Friday night, good and bad.

Abrahan Garza has been riding with CM since May 2009. He remembers there only being around 300 riders on his first ride. Friday night, he says he was one of nearly 1,500. Some estimated there to be close to 2,000.

Some have begun asking out loud if this means the event is getting too big for its own good.

More at http://www.chron.com/news/houston-texas/article/Houston-biking-group-eyes-future-amid-growth-4640543.php .

Cross-posted in Bicycling Group.
Posted by TexasTowelie | Mon Jul 1, 2013, 07:53 PM (2 replies)

Houston biking group eyes future amid growth, complaints


Photo: Mayra Beltran, Houston Chronicle

On the last Friday of every month, Houston bicyclists meet at Market Square park to take part in Critical Mass, an informal bike ride that happens among different groups all over the world.

The size of the last ride was the talk of the town on Friday night, good and bad.

Abrahan Garza has been riding with CM since May 2009. He remembers there only being around 300 riders on his first ride. Friday night, he says he was one of nearly 1,500. Some estimated there to be close to 2,000.

Some have begun asking out loud if this means the event is getting too big for its own good.

More at http://www.chron.com/news/houston-texas/article/Houston-biking-group-eyes-future-amid-growth-4640543.php .

Cross-posted in Texas Group.
Posted by TexasTowelie | Mon Jul 1, 2013, 07:53 PM (0 replies)

512 area code envy? Austin’s new 737 area code in effect



Austin’s second area code, 737, goes into effect today. The 737 addition has already created a sense of “area code envy.”

Established Austinites will keep their original 512 numbers. Most newcomers will more than likely get a 737 area code. The inventory of 512 phone numbers is set to run out in 2014. The Public Utility Commission says that Austin shouldn’t need another area code until 2047.

512 is now a symbol of where you sit in Central Texas’ social strata. Are you a local or a transplant? The 737 types will be easy to spot.

What longtime Austinite would want a phone number with an area code that reads like the model of a passenger jet anyway?



Source: http://digitaltexan.net/2013/austin-local-news/austin-512-737-area-code/article55160/

[font color=green]Then they say size doesn't matter?[/font]

Posted by TexasTowelie | Mon Jul 1, 2013, 07:44 PM (6 replies)

A Lamborghini and Ferrari Crashed into Each Other in Fort Worth on Sunday



The chances of a Lamborghini and Ferrari crashing into one another on a random stretch of Fort Worth highway have to be remote. But it appears the accident yesterday, at I-30 and Henderson, suggest it wasn't exactly random. Judging from reports on DFW Scanner, both cars appear to have come from an exotic-sports-car-rental company, DFW Drive Your Dream. Waiting on a call back to confirm, but they certainly have the inventory and, no doubt, astronomical insurance premiums.

Here's a close-up of the damage to the Ferrari:

[div style="width:60%;"]

Source:
http://blogs.dallasobserver.com/unfairpark/2013/07/a_lamborghini_and_ferrari_cras.php

Cross-posted in Texas Group.
Posted by TexasTowelie | Mon Jul 1, 2013, 07:29 PM (5 replies)
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