I am not a native of Texas, but I have lived here for 29 years. My husband's and my only child was born here, so that should make us, at the very least, legitimate Texans. We came to Houston, many moons ago, when my better half was offered a teaching position at a private academic institution. We thought we would stick around for a few years and then move back to the Pacific Northwest or perhaps return to my roots in New York City.
But we stayed here.
As with many newcomers to Texas, it took us a few years to appreciate both the poetry and hard-edged beauty of the Texas culture.
Texans work very hard. We care deeply about our children and our families. We take commitment and responsibility seriously. We believe in accountability. No one and I mean no one is above the law. Numerous summons to state and local jury panels have clearly reinforced this message, at least to me, as both a yankee and a westerner. Whether one is a farmer, rancher, urban dweller, teacher, lawyer, religious leader, engineer, scientist, accountant, yard man, maid, roughneck, longshoreman, banker, clerk, bookkeeper, student, horse trainer, dog trainer, vet, military, airline pilot, travel agent, hotel clerk, waiter, waitress, to name just a few professions, we all share a common belief in a work ethic, personal intregrity and accountability.
And so, my question tonight is, why are Texans who work hard and play by the rules saddled with elected leaders who do an abysmally poor job of representing their constituents?
Are our elected officials lazy? Are they above the law? Do they work for corporate donors and lobbyists, or worse, are they merely sheep that are herded by a bunch of fake and cowardly cowboys? Or are they all of the above?
I choose all of the above.
The senior Senator from Texas, it seems, fails to show up for work on absolutely crucial days when her committee has a very important agenda. Her committee? That would be the powerful Appropriations Committee in which billions of our taxpayer dollars are divided up among various programs throughout the states. Our Senator left us with absolutely no representation on that significant meeting day last week. In short, Texas got zip.
Why did the senior Senator fail to attend such an important meeting?
1. Moving her home from Texas to McLean, Virginia?
2. Chairing fundraiser events for Tom Delay’s legal defense fund?
3. Hosting fundraisers for Abramoff’s lobbying firms?
4. Having her hair done?
We surely deserve better.
And we will get a jewel in the end if we do what we do best. Work hard and maintain our principles. And go to the polls in November.
Our salvation for the future?
That would be US Senator for Texas, BARBARA ANN RADNOFSKY OF TEXAS FOR U.S. SENATE 06
Ms. Radnofsky has the right stuff to represent Texas: an unflinching value system; a keen intellect that understands all issues on every level and a real and deep commitment to serve Texans. Radnofsky is about substance, unlike her opponent who is merely a puppet for poisonous partisan ideology and rhetoric.
Thank goodness for Barbara Ann Radnfosky’s volunteers who are organizing Meet and Greets throughout the state; George and Ann in Grand Prairie, Evan in Austin, “Spinmeister” in Dallas, Carolyn in Houston. Vik in Kilgore will be involved through writing letters and flyer distribution. Randy has a firm grasp on the facts and figures and keeps lefty liberals like yours truly in check and honest. Susan is working with ranchers’ wives on both school-related and political issues. Carolyn in South Texas is helping, too. Janet Z., probably our youngest newcomer, is helping with Internet resources and Sharon; the lone liberal in Wise County is going it alone against the neocons with great success. Clark makes us laugh with his extraordinary wit. No one will ever forget his joke about W. riding the electric horse at Wal-Mart while Laura inserts the coins. There are many, many others…..
MOVING ON TO NATIONALLY HERDED SHEEP
CONSERVATIVES ARE MORE LIKELY TO BE HERDED BY AUTHORITRIAN LEADERS.
LOL..What the hell else is new?
John Dean gave a smashing interview on Keith Olbermann the other night on this topic which is included in his recent book "CONSERVATIVES WITHOUT CONSCIENCE." I ran off to Barnes and Noble today to purchase a copy. Now I am torn between starting The One Percent Solution or Conservatives Without a Conscience. Thank goodness for vacations and down time.
CONSERVATIVES AND THE HERDED SHEEP COMPLEX
ON RAISING ROVE.
YEARNING TO RETURN TO THE DAYS OF SLAVERY, GOP WON'T INCREASE THE MINIMUM WAGE, THOUGH IT HAS NOT BEEN CHANGED IN 10 YEARS, BUT ROVE SOMEHOW GETS A RAISE.
Why do our tax dollars pay a political hack's salary? Shouldn't the GOP campaign wing pay Rove? He does not work for the people. He works for the propaganda arm of the GOP.
ROVE GETS A RAISE WHEN MINIMUM WAGE STAYS THE SAME
By Mr. Will Rivers Pitt of Truthout.org.
This is a wonderful article written about accountability or lack thereof.
We caught a glimpse of the mind-set behind this whole process on Tuesday afternoon. The Senate Judiciary Committee held a hearing on the Hamden v. Rumsfeld Supreme Court ruling, the one that has ostensibly turned the Bush administration's war doctrine on its ear and has motivated them to grant minimum Geneva protections to prisoners.
Senator Patrick Leahy was grilling Steven Bradbury, acting head of Department of Justice's Office of Legal Counsel, on the legal and ethical basis for Guantanamo in general and the treatment of prisoners specifically. Pressed into a corner by Leahy's questioning as to whether Bush was right or wrong in his decisions on the matter, Bradbury finally stated, "The president is always right."
Mr. Bradbury, it appears, did not get the memo.
Tuesday's Washington Post laid out the myriad ways in which, all of a sudden, the president is being forced to admit that he has been, almost comprehensively, always wrong. "Accustomed to having its way on matters related to the nation's security," reported the Post, "the administration is being forced to respond to criticism that it once brushed aside. The high court ruling rejected the White House's assertion that the president has nearly unlimited executive powers during a time of war, and now executive branch lawyers are reviewing whether other rules adopted after the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon will have to be revised, especially those concerning the Geneva Conventions."
Much of this is, in the end, short-term analysis and observation. After picking through the detritus left behind in arguments over executive power, the inside baseball of political positioning, and the strange absolutism of Justice Department attorneys, we come around again to looking at long-term ramifications.
Granting minimum protection standards under Geneva to prisoners cannot and must not have anything to do with the exact circumstances of the detention of a prisoner, or the modern elastic definitions of war, or the desires of an administration to establish unlimited power. While the need to gather necessary intelligence and information on the disposition of terrorist elements is undeniable, the need for adherence to the rule of law on this issue goes far beyond constitutional platitudes.
WILL RIVERS PITT: "MINIMUM STANDARD"