Listen, Do You Hear That?

Democratic gubernatorial candidate Wendy Davis insists “we’re going to win” despite her Republican opponent’s sizeable advantage in campaign cash and opinion polls.

The state senator from Fort Worth suggested Tuesday that long disillusioned voters will turn out to cast November ballots in stronger-than-expected numbers – enough to push her underdog bid over the top.

It sounds like — denial. Like Desperation. And sorry Ms. Davis but I will work to upset your plans. Consistently you’ve voted against individual rights as my Senator; I really don’t want to see you in the governor’s office.

 

Abbott has a 12 point lead over Davis and since the state legislature isn’t in session for her to pull any more grandstanding stunts; I don’t see that changing. Those who support Abbott need to make sure to spread the word and have people show up at the polls.

Any other state races we should be talking about?

 

News That Makes Me Smile

Yeah, I know I’m way late in posting this but I have a really good reason

House District 94

State Sen. Diane Patrick, R-Arlington, trailed in election results all of Tuesday night — and final results showed she lost her re-election bid, claiming only 44 percent of the vote.

The tally for her challenger, Tony Tinderholt, a former military man making his first bid for public office, steadily climbed Tuesday night and ultimatley reached 55 percent of the vote.

Tinderholt said he was running for this office because he was worried about “the future of the nation and the future of Texas.”

Patrick, a former schoolteacher and professor at the University of Texas at Arlington, said she was seeking a fifth term in office because she wanted to help address key issues such as water, transportation and education.

It made me smile every time I read it. Once I post it, I might not look at it again. Oh well, I’ll just have to get used to calling Rep. Tinderholt come November.

Another Reason Not To Vote for Wendy Davis

I might cover the embellishment of her ‘life story’ later but for now, this should give another reason to vote for someone else.

She also said Friday that she believes universal background checks are “a good idea.”

Sorry Ms. Davis but I shouldn’t have to get a background check when I inherit firearms from my father or buy a gun from a friend.

State and Local Voting – Nov. 5th.

The fact that early voting opened yesterday convinced me I needed to get off my duff and talk about the issues on the ballot. For me at least, there are no officials to elect but there are 9 Constitutional Amendments and one local Proposition.

 

Local first

Proposition
“The legal sale of all alcoholic beverages including mixed beverages.”

For the uninformed (be you out of town visitors or not), Arlington is a mostly “dry” town. You can purchase beer and wine in many locations but liquor is limited to a few “non-Arlington” locations within the city. Confusing isn’t it. There are places in Arlington, like Pantego or Dalworthington Gardens, where liquor stores can be established but for the most part, they are forbidden.

This proposal would make the entire city open for the sale of liquor.

I’m voting For.

On the state level, here are the proposed changes to the state Constitution. Texas has a very system of very limited legislative power; most things that would be a matter of law require changing the Constitution. That is why we have one of the most amended Constitutions in the country.

Proposition 1
“The constitutional amendment authorizing the legislature to provide for an exemption from ad valorem taxation of all or part of the market value of the residence homestead of the surviving spouse of a member of the armed services of the United States who is killed in action.”

A exemption of on property taxes for a spouse of someone killed in action — what’s not to like about that. Even if it didn’t have the benefit of reducing how much money governmental entities received.

I’m voting For.

Proposition 2The constitutional amendment eliminating an obsolete requirement for a State Medical Education Board and a State Medical Education Fund, neither of which is operational.

Removing outdated requirements — enough said.

I’m voting For.

Proposition 3
The constitutional amendment to authorize a political subdivision of this state to extend the number of days that aircraft parts that are exempt from ad valorem taxation due to their location in this state for a temporary period may be located in this state for purposes of qualifying for the tax exemption.

This one is tougher to call. I don’t think the state should be granting one industry an advantage over another. Why should Aircraft parts be exempt more than watercraft parts or blender parts?
On the other hand, it also makes Texas more attractive to businesses and denies the state additional revenue.

And that is a good thing.

I’m voting For.

Proposition 4
The constitutional amendment authorizing the legislature to provide for an exemption from ad valorem taxation of part of the market value of the residence homestead of a partially disabled veteran or the surviving spouse of a partially disabled veteran if the residence homestead was donated to the disabled veteran by a charitable organization.

There are more and more charitable organizations stepping up and providing for our disabled veterans. Sad that it  has to be that way but I think it is a good thing not to put them on the hook for taxes they might not be able to afford after getting such largess.

I’m voting For.

Proposition 5
The constitutional amendment to authorize the making of a reverse mortgage loan for the purchase of homestead property and to amend lender disclosures and other requirements in connection with a reverse mortgage loan.

Another case where I don’t think the government should be involved but they already are. This amendment makes it legal for seniors (62+) to sell a house through a ‘reverse mortgage’ and buy a smaller / less expensive home in a single transaction. I can’t see a down side to this except some unsuspecting seniors may be taken advantage of……and that would already happen regardless of this amendment.

I’m voting For.

 

Proposition 6
The constitutional amendment providing for the creation of the State Water Implementation Fund for Texas and the State Water Implementation Revenue Fund for Texas to assist in the financing of priority projects in the state water plan to ensure the availability of adequate water resources.

While I support the state’s efforts at water conservation and planning, I can’t really get behind this amendment. Basically the idea is to take $2,000,000,000 from the ‘rainy day fund’ and put it into water planing and funding. I think it is a bad idea to pull money out of the emergency fund and definitely a worse way to finance for water resources projects. Let’s put those projects into the general revenue fund and see how many people support them….or want to support other projects over water resources.

I’m voting Against.

Proposition 7
The constitutional amendment authorizing a home-rule municipality to provide in its charter the procedure to fill a vacancy on its governing body for which the unexpired term is 12 months or less.

This is another I’m mixed about. I like the idea of finding a less expensive way of filling vacancies that will be up for election again soon. On the other hand, do we really want the established politicians giving one of their cronies the advantage of the incumbency so easily and so soon before the election.
I think in the long run, it is better to leave a position vacant if the city doesn’t want to pay for a special election ( population can have a say in that or not ) then to have someone appointed and all the advantages that entails.

I’m voting Against.

Proposition 8 The constitutional amendment repealing Section 7, Article IX, Texas Constitution, which relates to the creation of a hospital district in Hidalgo County

This is how silly the Constitutional Amendments can be. The original requirement creating the hospital district was voting into existence in 1960. This is a single jurisdiction issue that doesn’t belong in the Constitution. Let’s repeal it and threaten to tar and feather any politicians who brings up another vote like it.

I’m voting For.

 

Proposition 9
The constitutional amendment relating to expanding the types of sanctions that may be assessed against a judge or justice following a formal proceeding instituted by the State Commission on Judicial Conduct.

I had to look at this one carefully because the proposition doesn’t disclose what type of sanctions that may be assessed. Here is the wording from the Senate Joint Resolution the proposition came from:

 

If, after formal hearing, or after considering the   record and report of a Master, the Commission finds good cause   therefor, it shall issue an order of public admonition, warning,   reprimand, censure, or requirement that the person holding an   office or position specified in Subsection (6) of this Section   obtain additional training or education, or it shall recommend to a   review tribunal the removal or retirement, as the case may be, of   the person [in question holding an office or position specified in   Subsection (6) of this Section] and shall thereupon file with the   tribunal the entire record before the Commission.

Okay…good and bad possibilities in this one. The idea that a judge could get off with a ‘warning’ or ‘admonition’ for a serious issue is troubling. But prior to this, it looks like it was an ‘either/or’ vote; either they were removed from the bench or they were cleared. Having more options open and having the results known is what tips the scale for me. Judges in Texas are elected; let the people decide after hearing the facts.

I’m voting For.
Please join the discussion.

 

 

Busting the Trope

Remember how anti-rights cultists and the media (but as always I repeat myself) like to type cast gun owners as conservatives; bitterly clinging to their guns and religion.
(Hey, Obama just came up with a catchy way of phrasing it; the media was pushing it much longer). Somehow not all the people got the message.

Today was an unfortunate mistake, coupled with poor judgment. The gun was located in a book that was in his attache case. He forgot the gun was there and inadvertently took it into the courthouse.”

Leonard said she didn’t know if Conover had a concealed handgun permit.

Conover is a past assistant state attorney general and well-regarded attorney. His family has long roots in the area. A local high school football field is named after his grandfather.

The sheriff’s office says Conover will be charged with public intoxication and bringing a firearm into a prohibited place.

In all fairness to the local news station; they rightly identified the villain upfront as a Democrat!
Gasp in HORROR !!! as it is revealed that firearms are owned by politicians from both major parties.

A well-known Cleburne attorney and chairman for the Johnson County Democratic Party was taken into custody Monday morning after trying to bring a handgun into a courthouse.

Not just a member of the Democrat party but the Chairman for the Johnson County Party.

It will be interesting to follow this case and see what else he gets charged with (Carrying while Intoxicated if he has a license, illegally carrying a firearm without a license if he doesn’t) — and exactly how many of those charges he’ll be tried on.
And that doesn’t even get into the much larger issue of exactly who was harmed by his actions,.

Anyone want to take a bet it will only be one charge that he’ll plead to?

Please join the discussion.

Count on the Police?

In Fort Worth, you’ll have to count on the same number (or less) that they have this year.

FORT WORTH — Fort Worth Police are tentatively considering not filling any vacant positions next year in the search for citywide budget cuts, but no layoffs are contemplated, Chief Jeff Halstead said.

“We are planning on the vacant officer positions not being filled … and relying on attrition to fill the next academy class,” Halstead said in an interview.

The city had 76 officer vacancies as of Wednesday, and the number has ranged between 68 and 83 in the last month, Halstead said.

The department’s civilian vacancies also would not be filled, as part of the department’s 5 percent general fund budget cut being contemplated today, Halstead said.

76 vacancies — and that doesn’t count the number of officers who will retire in the second half of this year and next year. That doesn’t count the probability (extremely high) that one or more officers will be fire. Given how many have been fired for D.W.I. this year; how many will the department loose in the next 18 months?

The police have nearly 1,600 officers.

….
The department regularly runs a significant number and has struggled to keep up with regular attrition of 60-70 officers annually

So it is possible that the city could see a total reduction around 10% of the available officers. But remember, the antis want you to believe that you shouldn’t defend yourself and just call the police.

Want to put your life in the hands of a department with a reduced presence?
I don’t.

Please join the discussion.

Exceptions Proving The Rule

The world is really getting turned Topsy turvy isn’t it? I mean here I am a ‘conservative’ (more libertarian but let’s not quibble) citing an old ‘rule’ of Don’t trust the Fuzz.

This week an officer with the city police department committed suicide. Turns out he was under investigation along with another officer or two.

ARLINGTON — Police Chief Will Johnson announced Thursday that the entire Arlington Police Department will undergo random drug tests in the wake of a federal investigation involving possible illegal use of steroids by officers.

Johnson put the department on notice Thursday that if anyone is caught using illegal drugs, “they will be terminated.”

Officer Thomas Kantzos, who faces federal charges in the investigation, has been fired, Johnson said during a news conference at Arlington police headquarters.

Kantzos, a 17-year veteran, was arrested Tuesday, accused of accessing law-enforcement-only databases to tip off a dealer from whom he had been buying steroids for himself and other officers for years, according to a federal complaint released Wednesday.

Another officer under investigation, David Vo, committed suicide Tuesday afternoon under a tree near his home in west Arlington.

The accusations in this case aren’t as horrendous as some (murder, cannibalism, etc) but they are staggering in the implications.

First, we have the violation of trust in accessing confidential information. We also have illegal drug use; regardless of whether I believe it should be illegal, it currently is. The officer especially knew that and still broke the law. A law he swore an oath to uphold.

And this definitely goes along with the troubling “us versus them” mentality we talked about on Tuesday. We’ve seen issues with steroids in the past and how that can affect the way an officer interacts with the public.  Given this investigation, it really is in the best interest f every person to assume that the officer they are dealing with could be subject to ‘roid rage’.
Hey fair is fair; if you are going to assume that I’m dangerous then I’m going to do assume the exact same thing for any officer I come in contact with.

And I really don’t to do that. I really want to trust the people with “to serve and to protect” on their cars and hearts.
I want to believe that these guys were the only ones breaking the law; it is almost impossible to do that so. As Weer’d said in his post, Officer Harless’ behavior was known, it was condoned by many in the department there. I would find it hard to believe that people who worked with Vo and Kantzos weren’t aware they were using steroids or selling them.

And yet it took an FBI investigation for it to come out.

“These actions were not consistent with our values and they are not tolerated within the organization,” Johnson said. “When we make mistakes, we will own them and be transparent about them. Although we are experiencing the same emotions as the community, we have to persevere through them and demonstrate to the community that we are going to provide the same level of public safety as always.

“Ninety-nine percent of the police employees are dedicated, hardworking public servants that want to make a difference in the community. They are sad. They are frustrated. They are disappointed that our department is being viewed through this lens because of the actions of a few.”

Chief Johnson still has some work to do; so does every officer on the department. If they truly want to make a difference in the community, they have to start in their own department.

 

Please join the discussion.