Rep. What’s Her Name says what?

“I am not going to mince words with you all. Democrats want Republicans dead and they have already started the killings.”

This comment has been attributed to U.S. Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene, R-Loony Bin, aka Rep. What’s Her Name.

I am not going to parse this bit of idiocy, but idiots need not get any more attention than they deserve. In her case, that means none.

Well, OK. The fact that I have mentioned her briefly means she’s getting a little bit of attention. Just know that were I to spend time commenting on all the stupidity that flows from What’s Her Name’s mouth, I would have time for nothing else.

I’m out.

Change of weather brings cheer

I want to take a moment or two away from politics and policy to extol the virtues of seasonal change.

It took a few days after the official arrival of the autumnal equinox, aka the arrival of fall, but I am feeling a bit more cheerful tonight.

The weather topped out here in North Texas at something a bit north of 80 degrees. It began to cool dramatically as the sun approached the western horizon.

I do look forward to the seasonal changes. From summer to autumn is particularly welcome this year. It was as if spring never really arrived. We froze for weeks on end during the winter of 2021-22. Then summer arrived … with a vengeance!

I joked this morning that I was “ready for summer” when I saw that the temperature was 47 degrees. I was just kidding, of course.

I am not kidding, though, in welcoming autumn’s arrival. Soon enough, autumn will give way to winter. There’s chatter out there about whether our electrical grid can withstand another killer freeze which paralyzed us in February 2021.

I won’t worry about that just yet. I just want to welcome the seasonal change. It’s always a good day when we can go from dawn to dusk without turning on the air conditioner.

This election is a big … deal!

Pssst. I am going to reveal to you a matter that so far appears to be a secret: Princeton, Texas, voters are going to get a chance in just a few weeks to decide whether to approve a home-rule charter that allows the city to govern itself.

Why is it a secret? Because … state law prohibits the city from spending public money to campaign for a political cause. Unfortunately, the task is supposed to belong to a citizens’ political action committee that hasn’t yet been organized.

I have it from the highest local government authority possible that the PAC hasn’t formed despite the city council’s decision to put the home rule charter on the November ballot. Mayor Brianna Chacon said she has tried to find someone to take on the task of chairing the PAC. No takers.

This is the fifth election Princeton will have conducted to form a home-rule charter. The city’s population has exploded in recent years. The city now contains more than 20,000 inhabitants, according to City Hall estimates.

Here is what I found on the city’s website:

Home Rule Charter | Princeton, TX (

Princeton simply needs to take this step toward municipal adulthood. Since the city’s founding, Princeton has been governed as a “general law” city, meaning that it must follow the law with restrictions imposed by the Texas Legislature. Yes, lawmakers from the Valley, the Panhandle, from the Hill Country, the Golden Triangle and the Trans-Pecos region make decisions affecting how Princeton can govern itself.

That has to change. The election set for Nov. 8 will enable the city’s voters to approve a home-rule charter that allows City Hall to make its own rules. That makes sense, right? Well … it does!

I have looked around Princeton for outward signs of political activity regarding the home-rule charter. I haven’t seen a lawn sign, or a bumper sticker, or received a push card or seen any pamphlets extolling the virtues of home-rule governance.

As I understand it, state law bans governments from spending public money to campaign for issues such as home-rule charter. It doesn’t appear to disallow city officials from acting on their own time, spending their own dime and devoting their off-duty efforts to pitching this important measure.

It should never have come to that, but it might.

I am going to hope for the best that enough voters will realize the importance of a growing community such as ours to take charge of its own affairs. It’s a big … deal, man!

This is how POTUS should respond

At the risk of riling some of the Trumpkin Trolls who read this blog, I want to offer a brief word describing what I believe is an essential difference between the way Joe Biden handles his presidential duties and the way his immediate predecessor handled them.

Hurricane Ian hammered Florida with Category 4-level wind and storm surge. It marched across that state, headed out over water to regain its strength and then pummeled the South Carolina coast with more devastating wind and water.

President Biden’s response? He declared a federal disaster for Florida and well might do the same for South Carolina. He vowed to be there for all of those who suffered from nature’s wrath. Biden made a specific point that Republicans and Democrats alike will be treated with compassion from the government.

OK. How does that compare with how Donald J. Trump handled national tragedies? The wildfires that destroyed thousands of acres in California in 2019 became grist for Trump to lecture the state on how it should manage its forests. He would routinely castigate Democratic officials — who didn’t support him in 2016 — for their failures.

Biden, who didn’t carry either Florida or South Carolina in 2020, did not go there. He is president of all the United States, he reminded us … and he intends to carry out his response to the tragic hurricane accordingly.

There you have it. We elected a president who understands the unwritten job description he must follow.

Did Beto come clean on cops?

Beto O’Rourke got the question I was hoping someone would ask him tonight in his debate with Greg Abbott down yonder in Edinburg.

Does he want to “defund the police”? I asked O’Rourke, the Democratic nominee for governor, to answer that one cleanly and crisply.

He, um, didn’t. Is that a deal breaker? Does that mean I am pulling my support for O’Rourke? No.

A reporter asked him straight up. His answer was that he “always” has supported law enforcement. Hold on. I heard him praise the Black Lives Matter movement for calling on communities to defund the police.

Now he says he always has supported police fully? Not exactly.

I am a strong supporter of the cops, too. I have said so many times on this blog and have expressed it verbally to police officers over many years. If O’Rourke is going to continue supporting the cops from this moment forward, I’m all in.

I just wanted him to clear up any misunderstanding on the issue. He didn’t do it.

Let her believe that crap, however …

Ginni Thomas is entitled to believe whatever conspiratorial crap fills her seemingly vacuous noggin, such as the 2020 presidential election was stolen from Donald J. Trump.

We have no evidence of any such theft. Still, that’s reportedly what she told the House select committee examining the 1/6 insurrection.

Fine, lady. You believe whatever you wish.

However, she occupies an unusual place in the world of public figures. She’s not elected or appointed to any high-profile office. She is, though, married to someone who fits that bill: U.S. Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas.

Here is where Ginni Thomas’s denials of wrongdoing get a little sticky, not to mention stinky. She insisted to the committee that she and her husband don’t ever discuss politics at home. And yet, she would have anyone with half a noodle in their skull believe that she would ignore what she has told others that the 2020 election was the “greatest political heist” in U.S. history.

Is she going to have us believe she never has said anything to her best friend, the man to whom she’s been married for 35 years about what she believes is the greatest act of theft in the history of our nation?

I am not going to accept that Justice and Mrs. Thomas never have talked between themselves about her political life outside the walls of their home.

The issue came to the fore when Justice Thomas cast the lone dissenting vote as the court ruled that he had to turn over his presidential papers to the National Archives. Every other justice ruled that Trump had to cut them loose; not so, Clarence Thomas ruled.

I will stand by my earlier demands that Clarence Thomas resign from the court. He has no business ruling on matters related to the insurrection when he is married to someone who believes The Big Lie about alleged electoral thievery.

And I do not believe for a nanosecond that Ginni Thomas has never said a word about to the justice.

Explain yourself, Beto

One of the discredited public policy pronouncements coming from the far-left wing of the political spectrum has been the “defund the police” calls emanating from the deaths of Black men at the hands of rogue cops.

Beto O’Rourke, the Democratic candidate for Texas governor, was one of those who spoke about how delighted he was to see the “defund the police” movement gathering a head of steam.

I want O’Rourke, who I happen to support in his quest to become Texas governor, to explain whether he still believes in the defund the cops movement. Or has he moved on?

Republican Gov. Greg Abbott is beating Beto up on that notion, which might be contributing to his continued strong showing in the polls leading up to the Election Day.

The two men are going to debate later today in the Rio Grande Valley. It’ll be their only joint appearance prior to the balloting in November.

I want to hear some specifics from O’Rourke on the defund police idea that he once praised. More to the point: Has his view “evolved”?

TEA party goes silent over aid to Florida

Hey, do you remember the TEA party gadflies who bitched out loud over billions of dollars in federal aid going to states battling natural disasters?

They would gripe about spending money without cutting expenses elsewhere to pay for the aid. My favorite example was the aid earmarked for Joplin, Mo., years ago as that city sought to recover from tornado damage; some Republicans in Congress resisted, demanding cuts in spending to pay for the aid.

Now come the Florida hurricane relief efforts. Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, one of the TEA party golden boys, has resisted sending aid to other parts of the country. This time? He wants all he can get. Frankly, the state he governs deserves it! However, where are the TEA party stalwarts who complain about spending this kind of money.

Oh, wait. It might be because Gov. DeSantis is a rising political star and, by golly, the TEA party faithful dare not deny his state the assistance it deserves.

We are, after all, the United States of America.

Yet another salute to first responders

Hurricane Ian has become the latest natural enemy No. 1 to visit the United States of America.

The storm slammed into Florida’s Gulf Coast, bringing storm surges that exceeded 12 feet. The death count from the monster storm has yet to be ascertained, but I did hear that Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis has predicted it could go into “the hundreds.”

Oh, my. We are left where the weather has been gorgeous to pray for the first responders who do what they do, which is they run toward the danger. Firefighters, police officers, medical EMTs all have answered the call, which they promise to do when they pin the badges to their shirts.

Texans who are no strangers to natural calamity have rushed to aid. Oncor, the electric utility, has deployed 500 technicians to help restore power to millions of Floridians. The Cajun navy, comprising residents and their boats headed toward the storm. Texas Baptist Men, long involved in assisting where emergencies arise, again are on the job.

President Biden has declared Florida to be major disaster area, which means the federal government will expedite aid as officials on site ascertain their needs.

That’s what residents of the United States of America do. They rush to the aid of others.

Meanwhile, the rest of the nation can offer plenty of prayer and good karma.

Selective indignation …

I want to introduce a new term to this blog, which I will call “selective indignation.” It comes from the right-wingers who suggest that had Donald Trump said some of the wild things that come from Joe Biden’s mouth, the “left” would be going bonkers.

Really? Well, maybe so. Except that Donald Trump would say things and would demonstrate a cruel streak the likes of which I have never seen in a president of the United States.

And have you taken the time to listen carefully to the way Donald Trump seeks to articulate a point?  I would be willing argue, furthermore, that the Donald Trump of 1992 is a much more formidable debater than the Trump of 2022.

Rather than the left going nuts, we have the right frothing at its mouth. The latest Biden gaffe involves his calling out a congresswoman who has been deceased since August. “Where is she?” Biden asked at a public event the other day. She’s dead, Mr. POTUS.

And so … the right wingers out there are pointing fingers are suggesting that they have been right all along, that President Biden lacks the mental snap to serve in the world’s most powerful office.

OK. I won’t go there. I am not going to climb onto that political haywagon. The man made a mistake. I accept that it’s a beaut. It is not an indicator of anything more serious. If someone can produce any actual “evidence” of decline, then let ’em show us what they have.

Until then we have two sides of this great divide arguing among themselves over whether one side is reacting unfairly and tossing the “what about” argument that tries to defend the conduct of a politician on the other side.

Take it from someone who has lived with a loved one suffering from actual decline in mental acuity, what we are seeing in the president doesn’t qualify.

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