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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: 73,849

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

Grand jury to consider cases against Perry, Lehmberg

A visiting state district judge began convening a special grand jury Wednesday to consider two possible criminal cases stemming from the April drunken driving arrest of Travis County District Attorney Rosemary Lehmberg.

The 12-member panel with two alternates, which may be seated as early as Friday, will help determine whether Gov. Rick Perry broke any law when he threatened to veto millions of dollars in state funding to Lehmberg’s office unless she resigned.

The grand jury will also help determine whether Lehmberg violated any state laws, including those concerning obstruction, resulting from her behavior in the Travis County Jail immediately after her arrest.

The grand jury will meet, hear evidence and deliberate in private. It can issue indictments or can decide criminal court action isn’t merited.

More at http://www.statesman.com/news/news/local/grand-jury-to-consider-cases-against-perry-lehmber/nZm8P/ .
Posted by TexasTowelie | Thu Sep 5, 2013, 12:01 AM (2 replies)

Trial against Anderson to proceed, judge says

A lawsuit accusing former Williamson County prosecutor Ken Anderson of professional misconduct is back on course toward a Sept. 30 trial.

The State Bar of Texas, which filed the lawsuit accusing Anderson of improperly hiding evidence from Michael Morton in the late 1980s, had sought to cancel the trial, arguing that Anderson’s misconduct had already been established in a separate court proceeding.

Avoiding a trial would allow the bar to proceed to a hearing to determine if Anderson, now a state district judge in Georgetown, should be disbarred, have his law license temporarily suspended or be given a public reprimand.

Lawyers for Anderson had asked state District Judge Kelly Moore to throw out the bar’s lawsuit, arguing that it was filed well beyond the four-year statute of limitations for events that took place more than two decades ago.

More at http://www.statesman.com/news/news/local/trial-against-anderson-to-proceed-judge-says/nZmrH/ .
Posted by TexasTowelie | Wed Sep 4, 2013, 06:14 PM (0 replies)

The Affordable Care Act Part II: The Current Healthcare System

By Dr. Brian Carr
President, Behavioral Health Associates, Lubbock, Texas, 1991-Present
Chairman, City of Lubbock Board of Health, 2013
Submitted on September 4, 2013 - 7:18am


In 2010 approximately 150 million Americans (representing 48% of the population) obtained their health insurance coverage from their employer. The employer contributed the majority (about 70%) of the employee’s premiums.

The second largest group of the remaining population (about 28%) also receive assistance in obtaining healthcare coverage. These are those Americans who are elderly, in poverty and disabled. They receive governmental assistance in the form of Medicare (15%) or Medicaid (13%).

Add these two groups together and you have about 78% of Americans covered in their healthcare insurance needs. It is the remaining 24% of the population that are uninsured or seek individual healthcare coverage on the open market that is identified. Within this approximate 50 million individuals are about 13 million undocumented aliens. This leaves about 37 million citizens without healthcare coverage. This group is at a distinct disadvantage compared to the other groups.

While the ACA will affect all Americans to some degree it is mainly targeted at the one in four Americans who today receive no financial help if they try to obtain health insurance. The two largest sub-groups in this population are

1. Those who are self-employed or otherwise unable to participate in group insurance plans. Making up about 9% of the population, these are people who are financially able to buy insurance on their own but typically have to pay significantly higher insurance premiums, co-pays and deductibles than everyone else. These people experience a tax penalty in that they have to use after-tax dollars to make their insurance purchase and also lack the bargaining power afforded large groups such as a large business.

2. The uninsured-as of 2010 the uninsured represent about 16% of the population (about 50 million people). A big chunk of this group are illegal aliens (about 13 million) leaving about 37 million Americans who are unable to obtain healthcare insurance coverage. This includes young adults who enjoy robust health, while others are low-income people under 65 whose work circumstances don’t give them easy access to employer-based healthcare and who simultaneously make too much money to qualify for Medicaid. A major portion of this group are those individuals (myself included) who are not able to obtain coverage due to significant illness histories or pre-existing conditions.

By 2019 the ACA is expected to reduce the number of uninsured Americans from 41 million to about 10 million-a 75 percent reduction in the number of uninsured.

As noted by Chris Lillis, M.D. the need of those who are uninsured is both a moral failure as well as costly mistake for our country. In describing his work at a free clinic in Virginia he points out that the failure of the state government of Virginia to expand Medicaid under the ACA has a human as well as financial cost. In a case study he describes the plight of one such uninsured American:

“He is one of the 400,000 Virginians who would benefit from the expansion of Medicaid, and gaining this coverage would allow him to access primary care services rather than rely on the charity of the free clinic. Having a primary care doctor would allow for the same coordination of care that my patients, and my family depend on during episodes of illness. Having Medicaid coverage, and primary care, would also save our local health systems countless dollars — rather than duplicating tests and procedures that may be performed just 5 miles down the road since a primary care doctor could keep track of his diagnostic work up”.

A set of maps are described in an article from The Washington Post. The top map shows the population that is likely to qualify for Medicaid coverage, if they live in a state that is expanding that program. The bottom map captures the Medicaid-eligible population and those who may qualify for subsidies to purchase health insurance in the new marketplaces.

Tomorrow Part III: Why the ACA was Needed

TAGS:

LubbockOnline Blog
Deletions of Speech
just die quickly
Klein is selling it
Lubbock
ObamaCare
Perry keeps you bent over
Texas

http://lubbockonline.com/interact/blog-post/dr-brian-carr/2013-09-04/affordable-care-act-part-ii-current-healthcare-system

Cross-posted in Good Read forum.
Posted by TexasTowelie | Wed Sep 4, 2013, 01:53 PM (1 replies)

The Affordable Care Act Part II: The Current Healthcare System

By Dr. Brian Carr
President, Behavioral Health Associates, Lubbock, Texas, 1991-Present
Chairman, City of Lubbock Board of Health, 2013
Submitted on September 4, 2013 - 7:18am


In 2010 approximately 150 million Americans (representing 48% of the population) obtained their health insurance coverage from their employer. The employer contributed the majority (about 70%) of the employee’s premiums.

The second largest group of the remaining population (about 28%) also receive assistance in obtaining healthcare coverage. These are those Americans who are elderly, in poverty and disabled. They receive governmental assistance in the form of Medicare (15%) or Medicaid (13%).

Add these two groups together and you have about 78% of Americans covered in their healthcare insurance needs. It is the remaining 24% of the population that are uninsured or seek individual healthcare coverage on the open market that is identified. Within this approximate 50 million individuals are about 13 million undocumented aliens. This leaves about 37 million citizens without healthcare coverage. This group is at a distinct disadvantage compared to the other groups.

While the ACA will affect all Americans to some degree it is mainly targeted at the one in four Americans who today receive no financial help if they try to obtain health insurance. The two largest sub-groups in this population are

1. Those who are self-employed or otherwise unable to participate in group insurance plans. Making up about 9% of the population, these are people who are financially able to buy insurance on their own but typically have to pay significantly higher insurance premiums, co-pays and deductibles than everyone else. These people experience a tax penalty in that they have to use after-tax dollars to make their insurance purchase and also lack the bargaining power afforded large groups such as a large business.

2. The uninsured-as of 2010 the uninsured represent about 16% of the population (about 50 million people). A big chunk of this group are illegal aliens (about 13 million) leaving about 37 million Americans who are unable to obtain healthcare insurance coverage. This includes young adults who enjoy robust health, while others are low-income people under 65 whose work circumstances don’t give them easy access to employer-based healthcare and who simultaneously make too much money to qualify for Medicaid. A major portion of this group are those individuals (myself included) who are not able to obtain coverage due to significant illness histories or pre-existing conditions.

By 2019 the ACA is expected to reduce the number of uninsured Americans from 41 million to about 10 million-a 75 percent reduction in the number of uninsured.

As noted by Chris Lillis, M.D. the need of those who are uninsured is both a moral failure as well as costly mistake for our country. In describing his work at a free clinic in Virginia he points out that the failure of the state government of Virginia to expand Medicaid under the ACA has a human as well as financial cost. In a case study he describes the plight of one such uninsured American:

“He is one of the 400,000 Virginians who would benefit from the expansion of Medicaid, and gaining this coverage would allow him to access primary care services rather than rely on the charity of the free clinic. Having a primary care doctor would allow for the same coordination of care that my patients, and my family depend on during episodes of illness. Having Medicaid coverage, and primary care, would also save our local health systems countless dollars — rather than duplicating tests and procedures that may be performed just 5 miles down the road since a primary care doctor could keep track of his diagnostic work up”.

A set of maps are described in an article from The Washington Post. The top map shows the population that is likely to qualify for Medicaid coverage, if they live in a state that is expanding that program. The bottom map captures the Medicaid-eligible population and those who may qualify for subsidies to purchase health insurance in the new marketplaces.

Tomorrow Part III: Why the ACA was Needed

TAGS:

LubbockOnline Blog
Deletions of Speech
just die quickly
Klein is selling it
Lubbock
ObamaCare
Perry keeps you bent over
Texas

http://lubbockonline.com/interact/blog-post/dr-brian-carr/2013-09-04/affordable-care-act-part-ii-current-healthcare-system

Cross-posted in Texas Group.
Posted by TexasTowelie | Wed Sep 4, 2013, 01:53 PM (0 replies)

Cruz: Immigration reform shouldn’t include path to citizenship

MISSION — America’s broken immigration system needs tweaks, including more visas for high-skilled workers and higher quotas for legal migrants, but shouldn’t include a path to citizenship for illegal immigrants, said U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, speaking Tuesday during his first official visit to the Rio Grande Valley.

Cruz blamed President Barack Obama and Senate Democrats — who have advocated for creating a path to citizenship for people who entered the United States illegally or overstayed their visas — for stalling bipartisan border security and immigration reform proposals.

“I do not support a path to citizenship for those who are here illegally because, first of all, I think it’s profoundly unfair to the millions of legal immigrants who followed the rules, who waited in line and came here using our legal immigration system,” Cruz said, speaking at the Anzalduas International Bridge. “But secondly, a path to citizenship does not have the votes to pass the House of Representatives. I believe the Obama White House knows that, and unfortunately their focus has been on trying to gain partisan advantage in 2014 — or 2016 — in the elections, rather than on solving the problems.”

Tuesday marked Cruz’s first official Valley visit since taking office eight months ago.

More at http://www.themonitor.com/news/local/article_dbcef9a0-14f8-11e3-a03b-0019bb30f31a.html .
Posted by TexasTowelie | Wed Sep 4, 2013, 01:46 PM (2 replies)

San Angelo Planned Parenthood Closes, West Texas Loses Another Clinic

Earlier this month, we covered the closure of the Planned Parenthood in Midland, Texas. At the time, many looked to the San Angelo Planned Parenthood as the closest option for the thousands of clients who were losing their reproductive healthcare provider.

As of Friday, August 30, 2013, the San Angelo clinic is no longer an option. Last Wednesday, a note was posted on the clinic's front doors that simply stated:

Dear Clients,

Unfortunately we will be closing our clinic effective 8/30/2013.

You could request your records be sent to another provider if you would like.

Thank you for your support.

Upon hearing the news, local faith leader Bishop Michael Pfeifer had this to add:

We're told whatever we ask for in prayer will be granted and my gosh, could we ask for anything better than to spare the precious unborn?


This may just be me, but I imagine the thousands of women losing access to services could probably imagine a few better things.

More at http://www.burntorangereport.com/diary/14028/san-angelo-planned-parenthood-closes-west-texas-loses-another-clinic .
Posted by TexasTowelie | Wed Sep 4, 2013, 01:43 PM (0 replies)

If the Bushes Are Liberals Now, Then I Must Be a ... Kumquat?

Story in The New York Times today talks about the Bush dynasty reclaiming its influence in the Republican Party by championing immigration reform. I have another idea for them, based on their legacy in Dallas: school reform.

But this is grudging, man. Why do I want the Bushes to reclaim anything? I'm bitterly anti-Bush over Iraq. Right? I'm asking myself this. Right? I'm not getting a straight answer from myself.


Oh, yeah, this is a typical liberal, pro-immigrant, pro-poor-kid kind of a family, right? But what if that is right? Then who am I?

If you drill down to the inner core of the battle over school reform, it really forces all of us to re-examine some of the most deep-rooted of our American political assumptions. Me, for example. I'm a lifelong libtard Democrat product of Roosevelt liberal New Deal parents who saw public education as the backbone of Jacksonian democracy. So I'm on the side of the poor kids, right? And those damned rich Bush Republicans don't give a rat's ass about the poor kids, right?

Mmm. Not too sure about that. In fact, I don't think so. Maybe that's why I can't get a straight answer out of myself about the Bushes.

More at http://blogs.dallasobserver.com/unfairpark/2013/09/if_the_bushes_are_liberals_now.php .
Posted by TexasTowelie | Wed Sep 4, 2013, 01:40 PM (1 replies)

One Student Killed, Three Injured at Spring High School (updated 9/5/2013)

Press conference: Sheriff Adrian Garcia confirms one 17-year-old dead and four injured. "We have three persons of interest that our investigators are interviewing....We believe that a confrontation of some sort occurred...this morning that ultimately led to a physical confrontation that then produced weapons...We have not recovered those weapons."

Garcia asked people with any information to contact HCSO or Crimestoppers.

"We do believe the suspects we have in custody...are the only persons of interest that we need to have in custody," he said. The suspects are students.

Two victims transported to Memorial Hermann-Northwest with "minor injuries."

More at http://blogs.houstonpress.com/hairballs/2013/09/spring_high_school_student_killed.php .



[font color=navy]HOUSTON — A Friday preliminary court hearing is scheduled in Houston for a 17-year-old student charged with murder in a knife attack at his suburban high school.

Luis Alonzo Alfaro of Spring was booked into a Harris County jail with bond set at $150,000.

Investigators say a fight inside Spring High School in Spring escalated into a series of stabbings Wednesday that left a 17-year-old student dead and three others wounded.

The stabbings happened during a fight between several students in a school corridor.[/font]

http://amarillo.com/news/texas-news/2013-09-05/hearing-friday-high-school-stabbing-suspect-0

[font color=6A0888]Protesting parents not warmly received at Spring ISD building

About a dozen protesters gathered Thursday morning in front of Spring Independent School District headquarters, calling for better security on campuses and more openness from the administration.

-snip-

When the first members of the informal group showed up about 8:30 a.m., officials asked them to move across the street to a church parking lot where the media had assembled.

Tammi Humphrey, a former teacher in the district, carried a sign reading, "All school board members need to resign immediately."

Humphrey called upon the district to install metal detectors at Spring High School by the time classes resumed Monday.

Otherwise, she said, parents should keep their children at home.[/font]

More at http://www.chron.com/neighborhood/spring/crime-courts/article/Protesting-parents-not-warmly-received-at-Spring-4789437.php?cmpid=hpfc .
Posted by TexasTowelie | Wed Sep 4, 2013, 01:36 PM (3 replies)

Poll: Dallas Is the Happiest Big City in the Country, Because We Love Jesus

Here's the bad news: If you are young, poor, black or Hispanic, disabled, or just graduated from college, you are significantly less happy than you were two years ago. Recent polling says so.

Now, the same folks at Harris Polling who brought us that depressing tidbit now bring a spot of good news: If you live in Dallas/Fort Worth, you're more likely to be "very happy" than if you live in any other big city in the country.

This may seem surprising. If it doesn't, you're probably not grinding through the Mixmaster at rush hour or spending enough time in the comments section. But Harris is a fairly well-respected outfit, and they assure us that the results are sound.

The bedrock of our collective happiness, it seems, is Jesus or, as the "Happiness Index" puts it, "spiritual beliefs [that] are a positive guiding force." We also don't worry very much about our health, which isn't the same as saying that we shouldn't. Adding an extra bit of glee is the fact that DFW out-happys Houston.

More at http://blogs.dallasobserver.com/unfairpark/2013/09/dallas_happiest_big_city_in_th.php .
Posted by TexasTowelie | Wed Sep 4, 2013, 01:33 PM (9 replies)

Texas AG Candidate Barry Smitherman: End Abortion Now or Suffer Biblical Plagues

Barry Smitherman recently leapt off the political springboard that is the Texas Railroad Commission and dove into the attorney general's race. Heretofore, he has focused his campaign primarily on extolling the virtues of hydraulic fracturing, firearms and suing the Obama administration.

Yet Smitherman isn't just another Greg Abbott wannabe mindlessly mashing hot-button conservative issues. He also happens to be an expert on human reproduction, macroeconomic policy and the intersection -- nay, the complete overlap -- of the two. He proved this last week in a speech before the Texas Alliance for Life.

Smitherman's full remarks are available on his campaign website, but there are a few passages that bear highlighting:

America > China


Today in China, despite what you might hear of its economic progress and dynamism, the country faces a looming demographic calamity. Called the 4-2-1 Problem, there is often one child who, as a young adult, is increasingly responsible for the care of two parents and sometimes four grandparents. In addition, this only child, when he/she was young, is often referred to as "the little emperor." Spoiled beyond belief by his parents, and with no siblings to share toys, food or clothing, these children have developed, according to one Chinese source, "social problems and personality disorders, are over indulged, lack self discipline, and have little to no adaptive capabilities."...

It is always comforting to know that here in America; we are more enlightened than the Chinese.


More at http://blogs.dallasobserver.com/unfairpark/2013/09/attorney_general_barry_smither.php .

[font color=green]I realize that this is the third story I've posted about this nutcase in two days, but I'm not intentionally picking on him. He is responsible for generating his own bad publicity.[/font]
Posted by TexasTowelie | Wed Sep 4, 2013, 01:31 PM (3 replies)
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