Author Archives: Red from Texas

About Red from Texas

I'm proud to be Red. I have lived most of my life in Texas and I love this place. Here are a few things you should know about me. 1. I am happily married and intend to stay so. 2. I live in a house that is older than you, unless you are really old. 3. I own 2 rifles and a shotgun. I think handguns are just trouble. 4. I have never killed a man, but have taken out some deer and hogs. 5. I was a good student, but never close to being valedictorian. 6. In no particular order I like the Houston Texans, San Antonio Spurs, Houston Astros, FC Barcelona, Tottenham Hotspur, Texas Longhorns and Houston Dynamo. 7. I hate Dallas but always have a good time when I go there. 8. I was a Dallas Cowboys fan for 26 years but declared that I was no longer a fan during the 1987 strike. 9. I don't own any pets. I like cats, and a good dog and I have met at least 3 of them in my lifetime. 10. I think the best part of Texas is west of I-35. 11. I own two pairs of cowboy boots, but don't wear them very often. 12. I don't have a pronounced Texas accent, but can affect one when needed. 13. My last meal would be fried shrimp with tartar sauce, a baked potato with all the fixins', a dinner salad with 1000 Island dressing, yeast rolls and chocolate fudge pie for dessert. 14. I'm an old Dad, but my children are none of your business. 15. I have two degrees from UT-Austin and somehow managed to fall in love with and marry an Aggie. 16. Most of my family are right-wing nut jobs but I love them anyway. 17. When I get to play golf on a regular basis, I shoot in the low 80's. 18. I don't get to play golf on a regular basis. 19. I think Fort Worth is the best town in Texas by a long shot. 20. I have a mean herb garden. Regards, Red P.S. Remember it's not a color, it's a state of mind.

Today in Texas History – January 10

Black Gold at Spindletop - Lucas Gusher

From the Annals of the Wildcatters –  In 1901, the first Spindletop well came in near Beaumont.  The site had been the object of speculation since the early 1890s,  mostly by amateur geologist Patillo Higgins who was convinced there was a large pool of oil under a salt-dome formation south of Beaumont. He and his partners founded  the Gladys City Oil, Gas and Manufacturing Company but never brought in a successful well.  In 1899, Higgins leased a tract of land at Spindletop to mining engineer Anthony Lucas. The Lucas well erupted on January 10 scattering the oil hands as drilling pipe was blown out of the hole, followed by mud, gas and a 100 foot gusher of oil.  It took 9 days to cap the well.  This started the Spindletop boom.  Within a year, there were almost 300 active wells at Spindletop and hundreds of oil exploration and land companies operating in the area.  Companies such as Exxon, Texaco and Mobil got their start at Spindletop.

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Individual 1 Speaks – Red Translates

My fellow Americans (aka suckers ripe for the taking): Tonight, I am speaking to you because there is a growing humanitarian (no Trump golf courses – imagine the horror) and security crisis at our southern border (mostly my fault but I’ll never let on). Every day, Customs and Border Patrol agents encounter thousands of illegal immigrants trying to enter our country. We are out of space to hold them (Jr., Eric are you listening – new brand idea – Trump Detention Centers), and we have no way to promptly return them back home to their country (maybe we can revive Trump Air). America proudly welcomes millions of lawful immigrants who enrich our society and contribute to our nation (never met one, but they must exist somewhere). But all Americans are hurt by uncontrolled, illegal migration (except my clubs who hire oodles of them on the cheap). It strains public resources and drives down jobs and wages (I’m making this last part up). Among those hardest hit are African Americans and Hispanic Americans (again totally made up).

Our southern border is a pipeline for vast quantities of illegal drugs, including meth, heroin, cocaine, and fentanyl (but a trickle compared to legal ports of entry and we aint doing shit about that because my donors would scream). Every week, 300 of our citizens are killed by heroin alone, 90 percent of which floods across from our southern border (again through legal ports – but details, details). More Americans will die from drugs this year than were killed in the entire Vietnam War (take it from Cadet Bone Spurs – I avoided that mess like the plague).  . . .

This is a humanitarian crisis — a crisis of the heart and a crisis of the soul (my doctors tell me I have a heart – an excellent heart, the finest heart of any President ever – as far as my soul goes – not so much). Last month, 20,000 migrant children were illegally brought into the United States — a dramatic increase. These children are used as human pawns (think voters here) by vicious coyotes and ruthless gangs. One in three women are sexually assaulted on the dangerous trek up through Mexico (where do I get this stuff?). Women and children are the biggest victims, by far, of our broken system. This is the tragic reality of illegal immigration on our southern border. This is the cycle of human suffering that I am determined to end (by sending them back to their home countries to be killed there – out of sight, out of mind as they say). My administration has presented Congress with a detailed proposal to secure the border and stop the criminal gangs, drug smugglers, and human traffickers (or so I am told – it was more than one paragraph so I didn’t read it). It’s a tremendous problem (and I know about problems). . . .

We have requested more agents, immigration judges, and bed space (Jr. Eric – pay attention here) to process the sharp rise in unlawful migration fueled by our very strong economy (had to throw that one in). Our plan also contains an urgent request for humanitarian assistance and medical support. Furthermore, we have asked Congress to close border security loopholes so that illegal immigrant children can be safely and humanely returned back home (again to be killed there). Finally, as part of an overall approach to border security, law enforcement professionals have requested $5.7 billion for a physical barrier (f/k/a the Wall that Mexico was going to pay for).

At the request of Democrats, it will be a steel barrier rather than a concrete wall (my base might actually believe this BS – so why not say it). This barrier is absolutely critical to border security. It’s also what our professionals at the border want and need. This is just common sense. The border wall would very quickly pay for itself (trust me, I only ran almost every business I controlled myself into the ground). The cost of illegal drugs exceeds $500 billion a year — vastly more than the $5.7 billion we have requested from Congress. The wall will also be paid for, indirectly, by the great new trade deal we have made with Mexico (don’t ask me to explain or provide numbers because I can’t).  . . .

Democrats in Congress have refused to acknowledge the crisis (created by me). And they have refused to provide our brave border agents with the tools they desperately need to protect our families and our nation (except for the billions already appropriated). The federal government remains shut down for one reason and one reason only: because Democrats will not fund border security (I know I said I will own the shut down – but who on earth would believe anything I say). My administration is doing everything in our power to help those impacted by the situation. But the only solution is for Democrats to pass a spending bill that defends our borders and re-opens the government (or for me to cave).

This situation could be solved in a 45-minute meeting (or as I count time – 3 holes of golf). I have invited congressional leadership to the White House tomorrow to get this done. Hopefully, we can rise above partisan politics in order to support national security (because I am really desperate here). Some have suggested a barrier (f/k/a the Wall that Mexico is going to pay for – but I repeat myself) is immoral (and of course I am an expert on immoral behavior). Then why do wealthy politicians build walls, fences, and gates around their homes (because people have dogs maybe?)? They don’t build walls because they hate the people on the outside (the poor), but because they love the people on the inside (the swells). The only thing that is immoral is the politicians to do nothing and continue to allow more innocent people to be so horribly victimized (by seeking a better life here). . . .

This is a choice between right (me and my promised agenda) and wrong (anything the Democrats want), justice and injustice (that sounds good, I think). This is about whether we fulfill our sacred duty to the American citizens we serve. When I took the Oath of Office, I swore to protect our country (meaning doing whatever is necessary to save my fat ass). And that is what I will always do (until I am impeached or resign in disgrace), so help me God (and God I need the help because of the bozos I’ve surrounded myself with). Thank you and goodnight (it’s Big Mac time).

Today in Texas History – January 8

Slag bij Dove Creek | rebelcivilwar

From the Annals of the Civil War – In 1865, the Kickapoo Indians defeated a Confederate Army force fighting with about 325 state militiamen at the Battle of Dove Creek in present day Tom Green County.  In December 1864, a force of Texas Militia under Captain N.M. Gillentine discovered an abandoned Indian camp on the Clear Fork of the Brazos River.   Gillentine believed that Comanche or Kiowa might have been at the site and called for action.  A few days later,  Confederate Texas Frontier Battalion troops under the command of Captain Henry Fossett arrived at Fort Chadbourne to address the supposed threat.  Fossett located an encampment on Dove Creek.  Fossett was unaware that it was a band of Kickapoo – a relatively peaceful tribe since the Black Hawk war.

As Fossett prepared for an attack, the Texas Militia troops arrived after a forced march and a joint attack was planned. The Militia launched a frontal assault on the camp from the north.  The Confederates under Fossett maneuvered around to the southwest, captured the Indians’ horse herd, and attack from the flank.

The entire operation was bungled.  The Kickapoo benefited from the well-placed camp, located on a tall bank covered with light timber and protected by natural brier thickets.   The Militia got caught in the brier and came under intense rifle fire.  Three Texan officers (including Gillentine) and sixteen enlisted men were killed in the first few minutes.

The Confederate force was initially successful in capturing the horse herd, but an attack on quickly faltered splintering the Rebels into three groups who were routed with heavy casualties.  The Confederates and Texas Militia retreated eastward.  The now embittered Kickapoos headed south for Mexico and began raiding settlers along the Rio Grande.

Map from rebelcivilwar.wordpress.com

Red’s Reading List for 2019 – Topics

Red has put together the following topics for his 2019 Reading List.  Red picks out his topics for the year which typically do not vary too much, but he mostly fills in specific books as he goes in no particular order. Any suggestions would be welcome.

The following topics to be covered in 2019.

  1.          Texas History – Three Roads to Chihuahua (in progress).
  2.          U.S. Civil War History
  3.          American History General
  4.          WW II History
  5.          European History
  6.          Mexican History
  7.          Ancient History
  8.          American Biography
  9.          World Biography
  10.         American Politics General
  11.        Texas Biography/Politics
  12.        8th Grade Summer Reading (i.e. a book Red should have read that summer)
  13.       12th Grade Summer Reading
  14.       Classic English Novel – pre 20th Century
  15.       Classic Foreign Language Novel – pre 20th Century
  16.       Classic American Novel – pre 20th Century
  17.       20th Century American Novel
  18.       21st Century American Novel
  19.       Latin American Novel
  20.       Texas Novel
  21.       Other Southwestern Fiction
  22.       Complete Fluff Novel
  23.       Feminist Dystopian Novel (probably The Water Cure)
  24.       General Dystopian Novel
  25.       Short Story Collection – multi author
  26.       Short Story Collection – single author
  27.       A.S. McCall
  28.       E. Kelton
  29.       S. Lewis
  30.       English Mystery
  31.       American Mystery
  32.       American Hard-boiled Detective Novel – the trashier the better
  33.       Young Adult Fiction
  34.       Law/legal issues
  35.       Sports
  36.       Music
  37.       Cattle/Ranching
  38.       Art
  39.       Birding
  40.       Golf
  41.       Bullfighting
  42.       Misc.

Individual 1 Presents a Bad Movie Poster

Let’s dissect this just a bit.  As an initial matter, this shows a fence – not a wall.  And what is with the O with the lines through it.  It appears to be some sort of religious symbol – which is appropriate as Trumpism tends more towards religion in that only faith can sustain it – because facts just aren’t available or even really desirable to the true believers.  Also note that only the letters appear to be made of “beautiful concrete.” And what is one to make of the giant, hulking, red-eyed monster looming over the “wall.”  Is he on the U.S. side staring down some Honduran family who will run away screaming at the very sight?  Or is he an apparition – a ghostly warning to all who would pass?  Is he a Macy’s Parade balloon?  Is he untethered?  Is he high?

Recognize this for what it is – complete and utter real estate developer con man BS.

Today in Texas History – January 7

Vintage Postcard, Waco Suspension Bridge, Waco, Texas ...

From the Annals of Engineering – In 1870, the Waco Suspension Bridge opened to traffic.  The WSB is a 475 foot long single-span suspension bridge over the Brazos River that looks like a smaller version of the Brooklyn Bridge.  The twin double-towers on each side of the Brazos were considered engineering marvels of the day and contain more than 3 million bricks made onsite.  At the time of construction, Waco lacked the ability to manufacture much of the material needed.  The suspension cables were made by the Roebling Company of Trenton, NJ and other materials were made in or imported via Galveston and then shipped up the Brazos to Bryan and then by oxcart to Waco.

The WSB could accommodate two stagecoaches passing each other.  But the main initial use was for cattle crossing and pedestrian traffic.  For years it was the only bridge crossing the Brazos.  As a result, the $141,000 cost to build the bridge was quickly paid back by tolls.

The WSB It was closed to vehicle traffic in 1971 and is now open only to pedestrians and bicycles. The bridge is in the National Register of Historic Places and received a state historic marker in 1976.

Alex Jones – Bum Steer of the Year

Calling Alex Jones a conservative whacko is something of an insult to conservative whackos everywhere.  The Austin-based Jones has promoted various bizarre conspiracy theories to an eagre cadre of rightwing nut jobs who eat it up – including his utterly vile claim that the Sandy Hook massacre was complete fiction.  Jones faces multiple lawsuits and has been banned from many social media sites.  Yet, he endures.  And for his efforts, Texas Monthly has given him the coveted Bum Steer of the Year Award.