As Individual 1 promotes his “Wall” as the solution to a “growing humanitarian crisis” on the southern border, a real crisis is completely ignored by the Trumpian Party (f/k/a the GOP). The Houston Chronicle reports that since the beginning of 2018, 23 children in the Houston area have been killed by guns. Of those 23, at least 7 were accidental shootings resulting primarily from unsecured guns in households. Others were the result of intentional shootings either directed at the kids or who were killed when someone else was targeted. Red personally knows of several children who have been accidentally killed by guns left unsecured by adults who should have known better. Is the price of freedom, the death of children? Must the tree of liberty be watered with the blood of innocents? The Second Amendment absolutists apparently find this to be so.
“Mike Pompeo is doing a great job, I am very proud of him. His predecessor, Rex Tillerson, didn’t have the mental capacity needed. He was dumb as a rock and I couldn’t get rid of him fast enough. He was lazy as hell. Now it is a whole new ballgame, great spirit at State!”
Trumph – the Insult Comic President™ on his first Secretary of State, Rex Tillerson.
Red has to agree that RT must have been dumb as a rock if agreed to work in this Reality TV Show Joke of an Administration. Anyone who does gets exactly what they deserve – a heaping helping of abuse and scorn. As for laziness, apparently Trumph is an expert practitioner of that art – so again Red will have to defer. As for Pompeo, Red is betting that when his time is inevitably up, he will turn out to have been a Satan-worshipping child molester.
From the Annals of White Collar Crime – In 2006, Chairman Kenneth Lay and CEO Jeffrey Skilling, the top honchos at Enron Corporation, were convicted of conspiracy, insider trading, securities fraud and making false statements to securities regulators – actions that resulted in the collapse of the one-time energy giant. The Enron scandal affected as many as 20,000 employees – costing many of them their life savings; it also caused massive losses to outside investors. Lay, who seemed somewhat repentant and humbled by the extent of the accounting scandal that affected thousands of lives, would die in his luxurious Aspen home before ever seeing the inside of a prison cell. Skilling, who remains adamant as to his lack of wrong-doing despite numerous books and articles that exposed him as the rotten center of the massive Enron fraud, also remains in federal prison and is scheduled to be released in February of 2019. Red gives props to the Bush Department of Justice for going after these crooks. One of the major failings of the Obama administration was the failure to even attempt to prosecute those guilty of possibly even worse crimes that resulted in the 2008 financial meltdown.
The Greenwich Time reports that last week the Texas Catholic Conference of Bishops formally cut ties with the anti-abortion group Texas Right to Life. The TCCB is the church authority that sets policy for parishes which serve approximately 8.3 million Texas Catholics.
Texas Right to Life is the oldest and probably most influential anti-abortion group in Texas and is primarily funded by big time GOP donors. TRL largely functions as a wing of the Texas GOP and its endorsements carry a lot of weight in the Republican primary.
“We’ve asked our pastors, parishes and Catholic schools to refrain from asking (Texas Right to Life representatives) to come onto our premises because their teachings don’t always align with what the Catholic Church teaches regarding certain life issues,” said Bishop Joe Vasquez, head of the 25-county Austin Diocese.
It’s a bad sign when you are so radical in promoting the anti-abortion agenda that the Catholic Church gets fed up with you.
Showing surprising viability in deep red Texas, Beto O’Rourke hauled in $2.4 million in individual contributions in the 4th quarter of 2017. “Lying” Ted Cruz (as dubbed by Trump) was about a half million behind with $1.9 raised. LTC still leads in the critical cash on hand column with about $2.7 million more in the coffer than Beto. O’Rourke is closing the gap, however, and maintains a respectable $4.6 million on hand with no viable primary opponent. On the other hand, Cruz has the benefit of his willingness to accept money from anyone including dark money PACs; while Beto is relying entirely on individual contributions. Red still puts Beto as a longshot to win but November is a long time away.
Last week Rep. Beto O’Rourke (D- El Paso) announced his candidacy for U.S. Senate seeking to unseat “Lying” Ted Cruz (TP-Texas). O’Rourke comes from a political family – his father was El Paso County Judge. O’Rourke himself has been in politics for about 12 years – first serving as an El Paso City Councilman and then barely unseating 8-term Congressman Silvestre Reyes in the Democratic primary in 2012.
O’Rourke carries some baggage from his days as a rock musician and two arrests – neither of which resulted in a conviction. Since then, he has operated a successful business – making enough money to venture into politics. His legislative track record is light, but that would be expected from a Democratic Congressman from Texas serving in a GOP dominated House of Representatives.
O’Rourke has taken strong stands on legalization of marijuana and protecting LGBT rights, but he kicked off his “campaign” when he and Rep. Will Hurd (R-San Antonio) embarked on a 3 day road trip to D.C. when airline flights were cancelled. The two representatives live-blogged their discussions as they drove east and created remarkable internet buzz by rationally and civilly discussing the issues.
It is worth noting, that no one from El Paso has ever been elected to state-wide office and that O’Rourke is a long shot against the Cruz publicity and money machine. The only hope would be that Cruz’s overweening ambition and narcissism will turn off enough moderates to consider making a switch. Still it would be remarkable if O’Rourke could crass the 45% threshold. But when faced with a choice of “Lying” Ted or a long shot, Red is not afraid of big odds. Red is fully on the Beto Bandwagon.
If you are interested in O’Rourke’s campaign, you can find out more at betofortexas.com.
In the past two weeks, two Texas judges have said, “Enough” to the Tea Party dominated Texas GOP. First Terry Jennings of the First Court of Appeals in Houston switched to the Democrats. According to Jennings:
“The Democratic party- and the Democratic party alone- presents our country with a positive and optimistic vision for the future of all Americans, not just a select few.”
Then this week, Judge Lauren Parish of the 115th Judicial District which serves Upshur and Marion Counties returned to the fold. Parish had served as a Democrat but changed teams as those rural counties turned more and more red. Parish cited her Christian values in making the decision to return to the Democratic Party.
“The Grand Old Party of Lincoln no longer exists today. The current Republican Party has abandoned all the principles instilled in me by my parents, my church and my community.
I was brought up to respect my fellow man and to respect authority, to love my neighbor, to help those who cannot help themselves, and to help build people up not tear people down.
I see no way of reconciling my Christian beliefs with the manner in which the Republican Party is conducting itself. That is why I feel compelled to stand up and come back to the Texas Democratic Party.”
Almost too predictably, the Republican powers that be in Upshur County are now contemplating suing Parish after she issued an order making it easier for prospective jurors to do their civic duty. Parish ordered the court house to be opened at 7:30 on jury days with the metal detector operating. That got up the hackles of the Tea Party controlled county government and the county commissioners have hired an Austin law firm to investigate whether to sue Parish.
Red doubts that this signifies a larger trend. It may be that some RINO judges in Harris County join Jennings in abandoning the GOP ship, but it seems unlikely right now. If the Democrats sweep in November, Red may be singing a different tune.