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Senator John Cornyn Cares A Great Deal About Texas Wildfires And About Photo Ops

Texas U.S. Senator got a briefing yesterday from the Texas Forest Service about the wildfires in Texas.

Above you see a picture from this briefing.

The Senator is the gentleman with white hair.

Do you think the folks from the Texas Forest Service briefed Senator Cornyn on the sharp cuts to the Forest Service approved by Governor Rick Perry and the Republican-controlled Texas legislature?

From the Fort-Worth Star Telegram-

The Legislature cut the agency’s funding this year to $83 million from $117 million, according to Robby DeWitt, the forest service’s associate finance director. … Chris Barron, executive director of the State Firemen’s and Fire Marshals’ Association of Texas, said: “It’s very frustrating that they don’t have the proper tools and resources to fight these fires. If fire departments had enough funding, if the forest service had enough funding, we wouldn’t be in this predicament over each and every year.” 

Senator Cornyn wants you to know that he is very concerned about the wildfires in Texas.

Senator Cornyn is real concerned just as long as you know that his concern does not translate beyond a photo op, and a briefing with people who have no choice but to sit with the Senator and to be used as props.

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September 30, 2011 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , | 3 Comments

Republican Todd Staples Praises Impact Of Federal Money In Texas Job Creation—Nacogdoches & Palo Pinto County Line Up For Help From Washington

Republican Texas Agriculture Commissioner Todd Staples is very excited about federal money coming to Texas.

(Above–Todd Staples, on the left, with U.S. Trade Representative Ron Kirk. Texas looks to the federal government and the Obama administration to help generate international business for the Lone Star State.)  

From the website of the Texas Department of Agriculture-

Agriculture Commissioner Todd Staples today announced the Texas Department of Agriculture has awarded $750,000 in federal funds to the city of Nacogdoches for sidewalk and parking improvements. The award, made possible through the Texas Capital Fund, will support Archangel Capital Partners, LLC, dba Timber Springs, in developing an assisted living facility that will create 38 jobs in the city of Nacogdoches.

“The Texas Capital Fund is a smart investment that rejuvenates the economies of Texas communities,” Commissioner Staples said. “This award will help enhance economic development in Nacogdoches…”

The Texas Capital Fund, funded by the federal Community Development Block Grant program, provides more than $10 million in competitive awards each year to boost economic development in small Texas communities….

“The city has been working on the Timber Springs project for several years, and this award is an important step in bringing the project to a reality,” Nacogdoches Mayor Roger Van Horn said…. 

State legislators agree the Texas Capital Fund offers immediate and long-term benefits.

“Congratulations to the city of Nacogdoches for receiving this award,” Sen. Robert Nichols said. “I applaud local leaders for their work to bring new jobs and opportunities to the area.”

Did you catch the extent to which all this hinges on money from the federal government?

Nacogdoches County voted 63% for Rick Perry in 2010. I guess it was not cuts in government for themselves that the people of Nacogdoches County supported, but rather cuts for other people in other places.

Texas State Senator Robert Nichols who praised the federal money in the press release above is a Republican.

Here is what it says about Senator Nichols on his campaign web site-

A fiscal conservative

A true believer in the free enterprise system

Sure.

Todd Staples is running for Lt. Governor.

Here is what it says on Mr. Staples’ campaign web page —

“Keeping Taxes Low–While serving in the Texas Legislature, Staples stood shoulder-to-shoulder with Governors Bush and Perry passing record setting tax breaks,which has enabled Texas to lead the nation in job growth.”

Yet in the Agriculture Dept. release it says the following—

“Agriculture Commissioner Todd Staples today announced the Texas Department of Agriculture has awarded $750,000 in federal funds to the city of Nacogdoches for sidewalk and parking improvements. The award, made possible through the Texas Capital Fund, will support Archangel Capital Partners, LLC, dba Timber Springs, in developing an assisted living facility that will create 38 jobs in the city of Nacogdoches.”

I see. Low taxes create jobs except in cases where spending tax money creates jobs.

Does Mr. Staples appear to have any solid principles when it comes to the alleged core Tea Party/Republican Party issues of taxation and government intervention in the economy?

It seems that he does not. If this use of taxpayer money is okay for the purpose of job creation, why not many other taxpayer financed plans for job creation?

And this is not a one time deal.

Here is another Texas Agriculture Department release from July 8—

“Agriculture Commissioner Todd Staples today announced the Texas Department of Agriculture has awarded $609,500 in federal funds to Palo Pinto County for real estate expansion. The award, made possible through the Texas Capital Fund, will support Texas Best Proteins, L.P., dba Kennedy’s Sausage Company, in the purchase of an existing facility and 20 acres of land. The project will create 31 permanent jobs.”

Palo Pinto County voted 64% for Rick Perry in 2010.  Given that election result, I think the folks in Palo Pinto should have the Tea Party raise the funds needed to help Kennedy’s Sausage Company.

Here is the web site for Kennedy’s Sausage Company.  I don’t see anyplace on the web site where Kennedy’s thanks Washington for the money.

Does Mr. Staples support rasing the debt ceiling so that we can pay for some more of these federal government grants for Texas?

What hypocrisy from Republican elected officials in Texas and from Texas communities who elect these Republicans.

(Below–Downtown Nacogdoches. Picture by photolitherland.)  

July 14, 2011 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Barack Hussein Obama Approves Federal Assistance For Texas Wildfire And Drought Emergency That Texans Are Unable To Resolve Without Washington’s Help

President Obama has declared 45 Texas counties to be disaster areas because of wildfires and drought.

(Above–Homes destroyed by Texas wildfires earlier this year in the vicinity of Possum Kingdom Lake. Photo by unherdable) 

Federal money and other federal assistance will now come to Texas because of President Obama’s decision.

These fires and the never-ending statewide drought are problems that Texas cannot resolve without additional help from Washington.

That’s fine as far as I’m concerned. Sometimes in life you need help.

Maybe this is something that folks in the impacted counties and all across Texas can remember as they go on and on about about how bad government is and how the federal government is all about socialism.

So often the response from the conservative voting majority in Texas for a request for help is a kick in head.

July 2, 2011 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , | 4 Comments

Rick Perry Asks For Help From Washington For Texas Wildfires—Where Are The Tea Party Volunteer Disaster Relief Teams?

Texas Governor Rick Perry wants President Barack Obama to declare parts of Texas as disaster areas because of ongoing wildfires.

( Above—2011 Texas wildfires.)

From CNN

‘Texas Gov. Rick Perry is asking the federal government to declare the state a disaster area, a bid to spur assistance during a particularly potent wildfire season that has imperiled lives, structures and livelihoods in 252 counties, his office said in a statement Sunday. In his letter written late Saturday to President Barack Obama, sent through a Texas-based Federal Emergency Management Agency official, Perry said that above-average temperatures, lack of rain and low humidity have “caused extreme fire danger over most of the state.” “The wildland fire risk potential has reached a critically high level,” the governor wrote. These conditions “present a serious hazard to the lives and property of the citizens of the state.”

I see.

Texans need help from the federal government because of things beyond their control.

I thought the conservative Texas ethos was that a man or woman controls his or her own fate.

This call for help from Washington is being made by a Governor who has engaged in treasonous speculation about secession, and who is pushing savage budget cuts on the most vulnerable Texans.

We should recall that while those suffering from the impact of wildfires merit quick help, many in Texas nursing homes or many Texans who are sick due to no fault of their own also need help.

Of course, it is no surprise that Rick Perry wants help from Washington. According to a map prepared by Texas State Comptroller of Public Accounts Susan Combs, Texas took almost $28 billion dollars in federal stimulus money.

I’d also like to know when the Tea Party volunteer fire companies and the Tea Party disaster relief teams will be rushing to assist people impacted by the fire? Where are county Republican parties in Texas organizing teams of citizen-volunteers to help out our fellow Texans so that they will not have to turn to government?

Are we going to allow socialized fire companies of public employees team up with Washington to do the job that everyday Texas citizens should be doing?

People who have been harmed by the fires should be helped. However, since many of our political leaders in Texas would rather people die than use the Rainy Day fund or raise the taxes needed to meet the legitimate needs of Texans, it is fair to comment when these same officials declare that some Texans are indeed worthy of help from government.

Let’s be clear about the facts—

1. Despite all the tough talk, Rick Perry calls on Washington and Barack Obama for help to solve problems facing Texas.

2. Despite all the criticisms of the federal government from Republican political leaders, Texas received many billions of dollars of Barack Obama approved stimulus funds.

3. While I’m certain many very good citizen volunteers are helping out with the wildfires, the Tea Party movement and other Texas conservatives who sing the praises of citizen action are no place to be found in any organized fashion when help is needed most.

April 18, 2011 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , , , , | 62 Comments

It Is Wrong To Spread Story Of Alleged Multiple Affairs By Married House Speaker John Boehner

The Texas Liberal Panel of Experts–Cactus, Samuel Slater Bobblehead, Hamburger Wearing An Astros’ Hat & Extinct, are reading the John Boehner sex scandal story in the current National Enquirer.

The panel thinks it very wrong to spread the story that the married Speaker has possibly been involved with at least two other women.

They would never spread such a story about Speaker Boehner allegedly having multiple affairs.

Never would they do such a thing.

February 11, 2011 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , | 3 Comments

Socialist Government Snowplows On The Advance All Over Nation

I’ve not seen any Tea Party/Republican Party volunteers out over last two icy days in Houston to sand the roads, direct traffic if signals were out, or respond to accidents on the road.

Where was the Tea Party? When are these folks going to step up and stop letting government do it all?

(Above—Socialism advancing. Photo by SnowKing 1.)

I wonder if anywhere in our wintery nation Republican voters got together  as self-reliant citizens to refuse the socialist city, county, and state snow plows?

Rather than letting government do the work of free people, where were the citizen-shovelers?

Sacrifice is always for somebody else in the Tea Party/Republican Party world view.

February 5, 2011 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , | 3 Comments

Just As Ayn Rand Took Social Security, Have You Seen Any Conservative Sacrifice Anything?

Does it surprise you at all that the novelist Ayn Rand accepted Social Security benefits?

(Above–Ayn Rand looking on as Franklin Roosevelt signs the Social Security Act in 1935. Ms. Rand is glad about what she is seeing because she is going to take the money.)

Ms. Rand talked about rugged individualism in her novels, but she took the government money when it suited her purposes.

Ms. Rand fits in well with today’s fiscal chicken hawks.

Have you seen any Republican/Tea Party voters refuse government benefits? Have you seen Republican voting government employees volunteer to give up their job so budgets can be balanced? Have you seen any Tea Party backers organizing volunteer parties to build roads and maintain public parks so the role of government can be scaled back?

We’ve not seen any sacrifice at all. What we’ve seen is an attack on children, the sick, the poor, and anybody else who reminds bullying people of human frailty.

What a bunch of lies from the right.

February 2, 2011 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , | 1 Comment

Government Help For Boeing Is Good—However, Government Helping You Get Health Insurance Is Bad

The New York Times has reported a Wikileaks disclosure that the U.S. Government is very active abroad in brokering deals to sell U.S. made civilian aircraft.

(Above—The Boeing 377 Stratocruiser. What is good for Boeing is good for America.)

From the Times–

“The king of Saudi Arabia wanted the United States to outfit his personal jet with the same high-tech devices as Air Force One. The president of Turkey wanted the Obama administration to let a Turkish astronaut sit in on a NASA space flight. And in Bangladesh, the prime minister pressed the State Department to re-establish landing rights at Kennedy International Airport in New York. Each of these government leaders had one thing in common: they were trying to decide whether to buy billions of dollars’ worth of commercial jets from Boeing or its European competitor, Airbus. And United States diplomats were acting like marketing agents, offering deals to heads of state and airline executives whose decisions could be influenced by price, performance and, as with all finicky customers with plenty to spend, perks.”

Does Boeing complain that the hand of government is stifling private enterprise and that this is socialism?

Nope. They take the help.

If what the U.S. government is doing helps create good U.S. jobs—Fine.

What I don’t understand is how our government can take such a blatant role in private commerce and nobody objects, while at the same if we try to do something for the 50 million people in this nation who have no health insurance—That is somehow bad?

I suppose a reason that efforts on behalf of Boeing are okay is that it helps wealthy large stockholders in Boeing to become even more wealthy. Government involvement in private enterprise is fine as long as it helps folks who are already rich.

On the other hand, getting people health insurance helps folks who actually need help. Helping people who actually need help is socialism that will pave the way to Soviet type dictatorship.

Here is a Chicago Tribune story about $5 billion in government subsides that Boeing has received in recent years.

However, help from the government for average people who have no health insurance will be fought tooth and nail.

In the United States of America, when you have a big time recession caused in large part by the greed and misdeeds of the rich, the response is to bash the poor and to bash public employees.

What a country we have become.

January 4, 2011 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , | Leave a comment

Where Are Republican Objections To Federal Dollars For Galveston Seawall Improvements?—Where Are Seawall Bake Sales And The Citizen Volunteers?

The people of Galveston County will be enjoying the benefits of federal dollars as the federal government will be picking up most of the expense for $15 million in improvements to the Galveston Seawall.

(Above–Picture of Galveston Seawall I took earlier his year. Government, in concert with our own hard work, can help protect us from the storms of life.)

From the Houston Chronicle—

“….the seawall from Fourth Street to 83rd Street will be landscaped with palm trees and native grasses… Other improvements include solar lighting, benches and markers with information on history and local plants and wildlife. The bulk of the $15 million cost for the entire project will be paid for with federal transportation money…”

In 2010, the voters of Galveston County elected a Republican county government.

I thought the message of the 2010 election was to get government out of our lives.

Where are the objections to this project from Galveston County Republicans? Where are the Republicans of principle holding bake sales to raise funds for Seawall improvements? Where are the citizens forming volunteer parties to do this work without federal intrusion from Washington?

People can go on and on about government. But in the end, they take the money.

There is nothing wrong with taking the money for useful projects such as improving a resource as vital to the safety and prosperity of Galveston County as is the Seawall.

Also, there is nothing wrong with realizing the fact that government  has a role to play in our lives.

Wherever  in the country you live, you can bet that folks who complain about government  are taking government dollars for needed and helpful reasons.

We should be proud of the fact that we live in a civilized nation where funds are raised and people are helped for the good of the general welfare.

Here is some history of the Galveston Seawall.

(Photo copyright Neil Aquino)

December 23, 2010 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , | 1 Comment

Incoming Republican Congressman Wants His Government Healthcare—Learn About HCR Yourself

Incoming freshman Republican U.S. Rep. Andy Harris of Maryland is upset there will be a 30 day gap before his health care benefits begin.

This despite the fact Dr. Harris ran against Healthcare Reform in the recent election. Dr. Harris is an anesthesiologist.

Dr. Harris wants government benefits for himself. If you want government to help with your health care though you are a socialist.

Read here about the real benefits of Healthcare Reform.

Decide for yourself if this program might help you, your family and the nation.

Do you want to go back to when there were lifetime limits on polices and to when you could be kicked off your policy for getting sick?

Anger at government will be a cold comfort when you need help.

November 17, 2010 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , | 2 Comments

Many Who Opposed Stimulus Now Seek Stimulus Funds

Many politicians who voted against President Obama’s helpful stimulus program have requested stimulus funds for the people they represent.

From the Washington Post

“Rep. Pete Sessions, the firebrand conservative from Texas, has relentlessly assailed the Democratic stimulus efforts as a package of wasteful “trillion-dollar spending sprees” that was “more about stimulating the government and rewarding political allies than growing the economy and creating jobs.” But that didn’t stop the Republican lawmaker from seeking stimulus money behind the scenes for the Dallas suburb of Carrollton after the GOP campaign against the 2009 stimulus law quieted down. Sessions wrote Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood in February urging him to give “full and fair consideration” to the affluent city’s request for $81 million for a rail project, according to a copy of the letter obtained by the Center for Public Integrity. His letter suggested that the project would create jobs, undercutting his public arguments against the stimulus.”

From the same article

“Sessions was hardly alone. Scores of Republicans and conservative Democrats who voted against the stimulus law subsequently wrote letters seeking funds. They include tea party favorites such as freshman Sen. Scott Brown (R-Mass.) and Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-Minn.), as well as Rep. Ron Paul (R-Tex.) and Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.), former presidential candidates.”

None of this will surprise anybody.

Government has got to part of our recovery from this terrible recession. Anger at immigrants, Muslims and the President will be a cold comfort when you need a job, disaster relief , health care, or social security.

Government is part of what makes a society a decent place to live.

Based on those we see seeking stimulus funds, it seems that many on the right realize this to be the case no matter what they tell their supporters.

October 19, 2010 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Republican Harris County Commissioner Steve Radack Attacks Free Enterprise—Republican Alaska Addicted To Federal Money As Dope Fiend Is Addicted To Drugs

Picture Of The Day— Above you see a picture of the Seattle Fisherman’s Memorial that I took last month.

From the web page for this memorial

“In 1988, the Seattle Fishermen’s Memorial dedicated this magnificent bronze and stone aggregate monument at Seattle’s Fishermen’s Terminal. The celebration culminated years of effort and generous contribution by Seattle’s commercial fishing community. This towering sculpture and the bronze name plaques at its base have become a place of reverence, recognition and healing for the families of more than 675 local commercial fishermen and women who have lost their lives pursuing their livelihood since the turn of the century.”

Our food does not appear on our plates by magic. Fish, at least those not raised on a fish farm, need to be caught out in the dangerous open water.

It’s good when we honor our fellow working people. We can’t have true respect for ourselves if we don’t have respect for our fellow working people.

Link Of The Day— No matter what they tell you, folks in Alaska love federal money from Washington D.C. They are addicted to this money. They are creations of this money. They are dependent on this money. The people of Alaska are not rugged enough and tough enough to get by unless they  get a lot more federal money than they send to Washington in taxes. A lot of people up there in Alaska go on and on about how they hate the federal government. Yet at the same time, like a drug fiend needing heroin, they take as much federal money as they can get.  They are crazed for the this money. They’ll never stop asking for this money because they can’t exist without this money.

From the New York Times—

“Backed by a blue row of saw-toothed mountain peaks, the Republican state lawmaker Carl Gatto finds himself on a fine roll. Roll it back, he says, roll back this entire socialistic experiment in federal hegemony. Give us control of our land, let us drill and mine, and please don’t let a few belugas get in the way of a perfectly good bridge. “I’ve introduced legislation to roll back the federal government,” he says. “They don’t have solutions; they just have taxes.” And what of the federal stimulus, from which Alaska receives the most money per capita in the nation? Would he reject it? Mr. Gatto, 72 and wiry, smiles and shakes his head: “I’ll give the federal government credit: they sure give us a ton of money. For every $1 we give them in taxes for highways, they give us back $5.76.”

Texas Link Of The Day— Harris County Republican County Commissioner Steve Radack wants more government now to help fight pollution in the county. This call by Mr. Radack is based on his belief that the private sector must be monitored, regulated, and forced by the police powers of the state to do the right thing.

The Houston Chronicle reports that Mr. Radack wants to see a new environmental police unit to fight private industry pollution in Harris County. At current, pollution control in the county is done by the Harris County Public Health and Environmental Services.

Here is what Mr. Radack says—

“In the unincorporated area you’ve got people who are committing crimes as far as pollution is concerned and pretty much operating with impunity because of the way that department is being run,” Radack said. The county had a separate pollution control department from 1971 to 1998, when it was folded into Public Health and is one of nine divisions. Radack said that if the Court approves restoring it as a separate unit, it could and should be done quickly. “(Pollution) kills and injures people, livestock, pets,” Radack said. “It’s a very important aspect of law enforcement.

Given Mr. Radack’s views on this question, does it follow that he believes government regulation is needed in many aspects of the economy to police private sector abuses?

Logic would insist that the above assertion is just what Mr. Radack holds to be true.

August 20, 2010 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Texas Republicans Love Earmarks As Much As Liberals Like Myself Love Big Government—The Yang Of Truth And The Yin Of Hypocrisy

Despite all the talk we hear about Texans not wanting the federal government in their lives, Texas gets a great deal of money in federal earmarks. Many of these earmarks are sought by Republicans.

From the Houston Chronicle

“Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison’s status as a Washington insider proved politically toxic in her bid for governor — but those same skills reaped more than a billion dollars this year for Texas cities, universities, medical centers and military installations. Hutchison’s prolific use of earmarks placed her third among the Senate’s 100 members, behind only California Democrats Dianne Feinstein and Barbara Boxer. ..A 17-year Senate veteran who serves on the powerful Senate Committee on Appropriations, Hutchison continues to capitalize on her capital connections by inserting 166 special spending requests worth more than $1.2 billion into the federal government’s 2010 budget, which runs through Sept. 30, according to data collected by the nonpartisan watchdog group Taxpayers for Common Sense.. Overall, Texas raked in $1.6 billion for projects sought by its members of Congress. That total swells to $1.8 billion when earmarks requested solely by the White House, mostly for military projects, are added. Houston-area lawmakers are among the most prolific fans of the earmark in the Texas delegation, totaling about $322 million in this year’s budget. They sponsored or co-sponsored 85 of the 573 Texas earmarks. Five of the top seven Texas earmarkers come from Houston, led by Democratic Rep. Gene Green and Republican Rep. John Culberson.”

This is all good to hear. As a liberal, I support the use of government funds to benefit the lives of our people. It is reassuring to know that this common sense position is one held by office holders and citizens across the political spectrum.

As has been reported before, so-called libertarian Congressman Ron Paul of Texas loves earmarks. Mr. Paul goes on about not wanting federal dollars, but he goes after the money just like a liberal.

Congressperson John Culberson, who I’m sorry to report is my own Representative, once said the stimulus package was meant to turn America into France.

Yet based on the article above, Mr Culberson, just like Mr. Paul, loves to bring federal dollars to Texas.

What is behind this apparent duality?

Below are examples of dualities.

I think that for Senator Hutchinson, Rep. Paul and Rep. Culberson, the chart should be updated to show the Yang of a truthful person and Yin of a hypocrite.

The same can be said of all Republicans in Texas who take the money from Washington.

These Republicans may win elections in Texas for the time-being, but it is big government liberals like myself who enjoy the ongoing role of the federal government in the lives of Texans and in the lives of people all across our great federal union.

April 27, 2010 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Governor Rick Perry—A Friend Of Acorn And Of America When He Finds It Useful To Be So

Texas Governor Rick Perry is a study in hypocrisy.

Below are two pictures that show Governor Perry as a hypocrite.

First is a picture of Governor Perry with members of Acorn.  I took this picture from a recent Burnt Orange Report post.  This picture was taken in 2005 as the Governor signed a housing bill.

Now Governor Perry is criticizing his 2010 Republican primary opponent for Governor of  Texas, Senator Kay Bailey Hutchinson, for skipping out on a Senate vote that would have denied funding to Acorn.

It seems that not so long ago that Governor Perry was more than happy to be seen in the company of Acorn and it’s representatives.

The second example of what a fraud Governor Perry is, is this picture below where Governor Perry leans in front of the flag of the United States. (He’s leaning–right? Like he’s going to ask you your phone number or ask you your sign.) Governor Perry said recently that treason would be an acceptable option if some folks in Texas were sufficiently upset with policies coming from our elected officials in Washington.

Governor Perry should stay away from our flag if can’t be loyal to our federal union. The course of treason has been attempted before in our national history.

And don’t forget—Many Texas Republicans are open to a course of treason.

It is reaching the point where many Southern Republicans and Republicans across the nation are of questionable loyalty to our nation.

September 17, 2009 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , , | 10 Comments