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TexasTowelie

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: 83,715

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

Alabama's Judson College may close

Judson College just held what may be its last graduation ceremony. The school's trustees voted to close the small Baptist-affiliated school for women which predates the Civil War. Campus leaders cite a lack of money and declining enrollment in the decision to close Judson, which was founded in 1838 and is the nation’s fifth-oldest college for women.

A $1.5 million fundraising drive back in December was supposed to breathe new life into the school’s finances, but the effort fell short. Enrollment also declined from one hundred and forty five students to about eighty, with only a dozen new students committed for the fall.

Board chairwoman, and Judson graduate, Joan Newman said in a statement that the decision followed months of fundraising, research and prayer.

“Acknowledging the incredible legacy of Judson, acknowledging the thousands of lives that were changed through a Judson experience and grateful for my own personal journey at Judson, it is with broken hearts that the board votes to suspend instruction,” she said.

Read more: https://www.apr.org/post/alabama-s-judson-college-may-close

4 Birmingham police officers shot near UAB, double murder suspect dead

The suspect in a Sunday morning shooting that left two people dead near a Southside park shot four Birmingham police officers before they returned fire, killing him, authorities said.

The four officers – all members of the department’s tactical team – are expected to recover. Two were shot, and two were grazed, said Sgt. Rod Mauldin. The slain suspect, an adult, white male, has not been publicly identified.

The ordeal began at 6:30 a.m. when South Precinct officers responded to Brother Bryan Park at 10th Avenue South and Richard Arrington Jr. Boulevard.

Mauldin said investigators received information that an argument took place moments before the shooting. The victims were approached by a male and a verbal altercation occurred. According to witness accounts, a dog was mentioned during the argument. The victims were walking a dog at the time of the incident.

Read more: https://www.al.com/news/2021/05/2-birmingham-police-officers-shot-near-uab-suspect-dead.html

Civil rights group, state lawmakers call for Huntsville chief's resignation

A civil rights group and two state lawmakers joined the growing chorus of voices calling for Huntsville Police Chief Mark McMurray to resign.

The Rosa Parks Day Committee was joined by Democratic state lawmakers Rep. Anthony Daniels, the House minority leader, and Rep. Laura Hall at a Thursday press conference, at which they called for McMurray to either resign his position or be fired by Mayor Tommy Battle. Later on Thursday, McMurray took more criticism from the public during a Huntsville City Council meeting.

The public outcry over McMurray began last summer following an ugly series of events in which his police officers fired tear gas at peaceful protesters. But a boiling point was reached last week, after the conviction of HPD officer William Darby for murder. Following that verdict, McMurray issued a statement in support of Darby.

“It’s time for the city council and mayor to take swift action and change the leadership,” Daniels said during the event. He said he is now convinced that McMurray cannot adequately lead the department and that his continued employment as chief is putting officers in danger.

Read more: https://www.alreporter.com/2021/05/14/civil-rights-group-state-lawmakers-call-for-huntsville-chiefs-resignation/
(Alabama Political Reporter)

Amazon defeats EU in bid to collect $303 million in taxes

BRUSSELS, Belgium: In a setback to competition chief Margrethe Vestager's campaign against preferential deals, Amazon won its fight against an EU order to pay about $303 million in back taxes to Luxembourg.

The bloc failed to show that Luxembourg had given the U.S. online retailer special treatment in violation of state aid rules, the EU's General Court ruled on May 12.

The ruling follows Vestager's landmark defeat against Apple last year, which had contested an order that it pay $15 billion in Irish back taxes.

Both Amazon and Apple were targeted by Vestager in a crusade to weed out tax deals used by EU states, including Luxembourg and the Netherlands, to attract large companies.

Read more: https://www.caribbeannews.net/news/269499793/amazon-defeats-eu-in-bid-to-collect-303-million-in-taxes

Turkey Reports on Puerto Rico's Status

“The Status of Puerto Rico” is an in-depth report on Puerto Rico’s status produced by the program Inside America with Ghida Fakhry from the Turkish Radio and Television Corporation.

After explaining the new statehood admissions bill and the competing HR 2070, Fakhry began by talking with former Governor of Puerto Rico, Luis Fortuño. Fortuño explained the economic benefits of statehood. “For investors, they look at Puerto Rico and then they say, ‘It’s not as safe as a U.S. state.'”

“At the end of the day, it has to work as it was supposed to work,” said Fortuño. “The vast majority of people rejected the current territorial status. We need to finish the conversation once and for all.”

Fakhry asked whether Puerto Rico shouldn’t have more options.

Read more: https://www.puertoricoreport.com/turkey-reports-on-puerto-ricos-status/#.YKHjxPzPzIU

EPA Orders Limetree Bay to Shut Down for 60 days, Putting Plant Restart in Peril

CHRISTIANSTED — U.S. regulators on Friday ordered the Limetree Bay refinery on St. Croix to cease operations for at least 60 days, throwing the multibillion-dollar overhaul of the massive plant into jeopardy.

The south shore refinery has suffered several financial and operational setbacks since its private equity owners sought to restart the 1,500 acre facility idled since 2012. It voluntarily stopped processing this week after showering nearby homes with an oily mist for the second time this year.

The incident exceeded the plant’s permit for sulfur dioxide emissions, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency said. The EPA ordered the facility closed “due to multiple improperly conducted operations that present an imminent risk to public health” and signaled it might take further action.

Limetree Bay spokeswoman Erica Parsons did not respond to requests for comment. On Thursday, a malfunction in a processing unit led the company to send staff to inspect local properties. It advised residents not to drink from rainwater cisterns.

Read more: https://vifreepress.com/2021/05/epa-orders-limetree-bay-to-shut-down-for-60-days-putting-plant-restart-in-peril/

Charlie Crist outlines plan to fight Ron DeSantis election measures

Gubernatorial candidate Charlie Crist is countering legislation that establishes stricter election provisions in Florida by campaigning to reverse the measures and providing proposals to expand voting access.

In an op-ed for the Tampa Bay Times, Crist outlines his platform on election reform, which includes undoing Gov. Ron DeSantis’ recently signed legislation that tightens Florida voting laws.

“Gov. Ron DeSantis and his Republican colleagues in Tallahassee care more about their political futures than our democracy and your right to vote,” Crist wrote. “There is no other explanation for their constant voter suppression efforts.”

DeSantis signed the elections bill (SB 90) on May 6, immediately coming under fire for how he went about it — the Governor signed the legislation into law behind closed doors as an on-air exclusive with Fox News. Media, except for the conservative news giant, weren’t allowed at the rally, prompting complaints from Democrats and reporters. Crist also quickly criticized DeSantis for the move.

Read more: https://floridapolitics.com/archives/429707-charlie-crist-combats-gov-ron-desantis-election-measures/

Americans for Prosperity launches campaign against infrastructure plan, targets Stephanie Murphy

Americans for Prosperity, a libertarian advocacy group, has launched a campaign in opposition to President Joe Biden’s $2.3 trillion infrastructure proposal. The campaign will focus on 27 lawmakers, including Democratic U.S. Rep. Stephanie Murphy, in order to drive opposition for the plan.

The group launched the campaign Thursday, describing it as a seven-figure, national campaign called “End Washington Waste: Stop the Spending Spree.” The goal of the campaign is to rally Americans against the proposal, while offering alternatives, according to the organization.

“President Biden’s infrastructure proposal is a partisan wish list that will cost trillions of dollars, be paid for by historic tax hikes, and do little to improve roads, bridges and airports,” AFP-FL state director Skylar Zander said in a statement.

“Congress has already rammed through nearly $2 trillion in partisan COVID-19 ‘relief’ spending this year, and the last thing Washington should be doing is coming up with new ways to spend taxpayer money.”

Read more: https://floridapolitics.com/archives/429797-americans-for-prosperity-launch-campaign-against-infrastructure-plan-target-stephanie-murphy/

Gaming compact: Lawmakers brace for high-stakes session with $2.5 billion on the line

Some 70 state lawmakers, reporters and other interested parties were schooled this week on “a spiderweb” of gambling laws in Florida, ahead of a special session of the Florida Legislature that aims to legalize sports betting for the first time.

That’s in spite of a 2018 constitutional amendment banning casinos and casino-type gaming except as approved by voters statewide.

At the heart of the matter is a proposed 30-year compact between the State of Florida and the Seminole Tribe worth a minimum of $2.5 billion to the state over the next five years.

If ratified by the Legislature next week, that new compact and its giant payout would replace a 2010 agreement worth absolutely nothing to the state since April 2019. During former Gov. Rick Scott’s administration, the state breached the terms of the 2010 compact, which had granted the Seminole Tribe exclusive rights to certain kinds of gambling games. The dispute went to court, a settlement was reached, but then it was not enforced by the state, so the tribe ultimately stopped paying the state a share of its gaming revenue, according to lawyers and legislative analysts who briefed lawmakers and news media this week.

Read more: https://www.floridaphoenix.com/2021/05/13/gaming-compact-lawmakers-brace-for-high-stakes-session-with-2-5-billion-on-the-line/

"An All-Out Assault on Black People": Civil Liberties Groups Sue DeSantis Over Anti-Protest Law

After the murder of George Floyd at the hands of police last year, Miami joined the nation in widespread protests to bring attention to racial injustices and police brutality in the United States. Most of the protests were peaceful, but Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis latched on to the few occasions that became disorderly to propose a new law that would increase penalties for crimes committed at demonstrations.

Critics cried foul, saying the legislation criminalizes protests, creates a chilling effect on free speech, and unfairly targets Black people who are speaking out against injustices. But the bill moved through the Florida legislature this past session, and DeSantis signed the Combating Public Disorder Act into law last month.

The day DeSantis signed the bill, community organizers and demonstrators with groups such as the Black Collective were prepared to take to the streets to protest the legislation. But they didn't — out of fear of getting arrested and being held in custody for an extended period without bail. And that, civil rights attorneys and advocates say, was the entire point of the law.

"They want to create this level of fear in our communities that we don't have a right to voice our concerns and hold individuals in power accountable," says Francesca Menes, co-founder of the Black Collective. "They want us to step back."

Read more: https://www.browardpalmbeach.com/news/florida-gov-ron-desantis-sued-over-anti-protest-law-11334730
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