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TexasTowelie

Profile Information

Gender: Male
Hometown: Texas
Home country: United States
Current location: Red Hell Texas
Member since: Sun Aug 14, 2011, 03:57 AM
Number of posts: 68,541

About Me

Middle-aged white guy who believes in justice and equality for all. Math and computer analyst with additional 21st century jack-of-all-trades skills. I'm a stud, not a dud!

Journal Archives

How To Cook a Turkey

Forget about basting, steaming or deep-frying because these directions are foolproof.

1. Buy a turkey.

2. Have a glass of wine.

3. Stuff turkey.

4. Have a glass of wine.

5. Put turkey in oven.

6. Relax, and have another few glasses of wine.

7. Turk the bastey.

8. Wine of glass another get.

9. Ponder the meat thermometer.

10. Glass yourself another pour of wine.

11. Bake the wine for 4 hours.

12. Take the oven out of the turkey.

13. Floor the turkey up off the pick.

14. Turk the carvey.

15. Get yourself another wottle of bine.

16. Tet the sable, and pour yourself another glass of turkey.

17. Say grace, throw up, and pass out.

I also advice using a generous amount of herbs to spice the turkey and enhance the appetite.

State education board limits charter school options

One year ago, the State Board of Education approved an application for Great Hearts Academies of Arizona to open a charter school in San Antonio. But last week that same panel denied the same charter organization the right to open campuses in North Texas.

What was that flip-flop about? And did the nine dissenting board members consider that their flip-flop might give pause to other out-of-state charter operators who might have something to offer Texas?

On Friday, the elected education panel denied Great Hearts an opportunity to open four North Texas schools. The organization’s liberal arts curriculum emphasizes the classics, character education and the arts.

Great Hearts also has a proven academic record in Arizona, its home state. The network of public but autonomous schools wanted to bring its rigorous model to Irving, Oak Cliff/West Dallas and Old East Dallas.

More at http://www.dallasnews.com/opinion/editorials/20131126-editorial-state-education-board-limits-charter-school-options.ece .

Irving software firm settles suit with U.S. Army for $50 million

WASHINGTON — What do you do as a small software firm in Irving when you discover your biggest client has illegally installed your software on thousands of unlicensed workstations around the world?

If you’re Apptricity Corp., an 80-employee firm that sells enterprise logistics software, what you do is file a federal lawsuit claiming copyright infringement and hope like heck the client won’t get mad enough to drop you — even if that client is the U.S. Army and the suit seeks a quarter of a billion dollars.

That gamble has paid off for the Irving firm, which will announce Monday that the Army has settled its case and paid $50 million — and kept in place its working relationship with the company.

The privately held firm won’t say how much revenue it earns in a year, but chief financial officer Randy Lieberman did confirm that the settlement from the government is “a multiple of our annual revenues.”

More at http://www.dallasnews.com/business/business-headlines/20131124-irving-software-firm-settles-suit-with-u.s.-army-for-50-million.ece .

Texas National Guard to limit benefits to 5 bases to avoid recognizing gay marriages

Taking a page out of Oklahoma’s book, the Texas National Guard plans to require all spouses — gay and straight — to travel to one of five federally owned facilities to sign up for benefits, according to an LGBT military families group.

Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel ordered the military to treat all legally married couples equally in August, pursuant to the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision striking down a portion of the Defense of Marriage Act. However, the Texas National Guard has refused to provide ID cards or process housing allowances for gay spouses at its facilities, saying they must instead travel to federal bases to apply for benefits.

Texas officials have taken the position that processing the benefits applications from gay spouses would violate the state’s constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriage.

On Tuesday, the Texas National Guard announced the Defense Department has approved a new procedure to resolve the conflict.

More at http://www.lonestarq.com/lgbt-families-group-slams-texas-national-guards-new-benefits-enrollment-policy/ .

Ex-Access HealthSource CEO, spokesman sentenced for racketeering; nearly $14M restitution ordered

Former Access HealthSource CEO Francisco "Frank" Apodaca, and his former spokesman will be serving their federal prison sentence close to home.

Earlier this month, Apodaca and co-defendant Marc Schwartz were each sentenced to eight years in prison after pleading guilty last year to public corruption charges. Apodaca is appealing his sentence.

Last week, Schwartz and his attorney were notified that Schwartz will be incarcerated at the FCI La Tuna federal prison facility in Anthony, Texas. Apodaca will serve his sentence at a federal prison in Big Spring, Texas, which is about 345 miles east of El Paso.

-snip-

During their sentencing hearing early this month, U.S. District Judge Frank Montalvo ordered each to pay nearly $7 million in restitution to two area school districts and El Paso County, including nearly $2.3 million to the Ysleta Independent School District, $4.1 million to the El Paso Independent School District and about $433,000 to the county.

More at http://www.elpasotimes.com/latestnews/ci_24605504/ex-access-ceo-spokesman-ordered-serve-time-texas .

El Paso congressman's IPO stake in Twitter questioned

AUSTIN — U.S. Rep. Beto O'Rourke has reported possibly violating ethics laws after participating in Twitter's public stock debut, and the financial disclosures of another Texas congressman has been questioned by a newspaper investigation.

O'Rourke, a first-term El Paso Democrat, bought $2,600 worth of Twitter shares earlier this month when the social network made Wall Street's most anticipated public offering of the year, the El Paso Times reported Tuesday.

O'Rourke reported to the House Ethics Committee this week that his participation may have violated a new law aimed at stopping members of Congress from engaging in certain stock transactions and getting special deals. He told the newspaper he didn't see a November House memo that urged caution about participating in IPOs.

But O'Rourke said that after contacting the ethics committee to report the possible violation, he was left unsure whether he actually broke the Stop Trading on Congressional Knowledge Act passed in 2012.

More at http://www.dallasnews.com/news/politics/national-politics/20131126-el-paso-congressman-s-ipo-stake-in-twitter-questioned.ece .

[font color=green]At least O'Rourke is coming forward on his own volition.[/font]

Bug Appétit: A feast for Thanksgiving with insect ingredients

Still wondering what to prepare for Thanksgiving?

Each Thanksgiving, the "bug chefs" at the Insectarium in New Orleans whip up special holiday recipes with insect ingredients for adventurous souls to try special sample tastings of the world of protein.

Watch the video at http://www.tylerpaper.com/TP-News+Other/190405/a-feast-for-thanksgiving-with-insect-ingredients .

[font color=green]Yummy![/font]

Rural Hospitals Struggling In Texas

Rural hospitals provide emergency and routine care for millions of people in Texas. But over the past few decades, their doors have been closing. The Affordable Care Act was supposed to help financially-strained rural hospitals stay open – but it doesn’t look like there will be much relief for those in Texas.

Hospitals in rural areas were relatively healthy up until the 1980s. But in that decade, and the one that followed, over 400 rural hospitals closed throughout the country.

David Lee, government affairs manager for the National Rural Health Association, says following the collapse, Congress essentially put rural hospitals on life support – funneling money through increased Medicare reimbursements for newly-designated critical access hospitals to slow the tide of closures.

Lee fears rural hospitals are in jeopardy again.


10 Things to Know About Texas Rural Hospitals – Prepared by the Texas Organization of Rural and Community Hospitals (TORCH)

1. There are 183 rural hospitals in Texas out of 580 total licensed hospitals.*

2. Texas rural hospitals provide access to routine and emergency health care for 15 percent of the state’s population, but cover 85 percent of the state’s geography.

3. Texas has 80 Critical Access Hospitals (CAH) – a special Medicare designation for certain small rural hospitals with 25-or-less beds and at least 35 miles from another hospital (some exceptions on mileage separation). CAHs receive special reimbursement consideration from Medicare so they can remain financially viable even with lower patient volume

4. There are areas in Texas that are more than 100 miles away from the nearest hospital.

5. Texas rural hospitals are straining under the current reimbursement system having to layoff personnel and eliminate positions – 28 rural hospitals report 252 positions eliminated in the last few months.

6. Rural hospitals often cannot provide more profitable advanced services and medical procedures.

7. Rural hospitals treat older and poorer patients providing a higher percentage of Medicare and Medicaid services than urban hospitals – both of which often pay less than private insurance.

8. Rural areas in Texas have the highest levels of uninsured – some as high as 50 percent – while the Texas average is 26 percent. (14 of the 15 highest uninsured level counties in the country are Texas rural counties).

9. Rural hospitals comprise two percent of the overall Texas Medicaid budget and less than five percent of all Texas hospital related Medicaid payments.

10. More than 80 hospitals closed in Texas during the 1980s and 1990s, most of them were rural.


More at http://breakthroughs.kera.org/rural-hospitals-struggling-in-texas/ .

[font color=green]The article also examines the impact of the Affordable Care Act on rural hospitals.[/font]

Texas Democrats must provide a contrast to the Texas GOP’s cruel conservatism

There’s no doubt that two women, one a Latina, at the top of the Democratic ticket will be a sharp contrast with the white male GOP to of the ticket. But it’s also more of a middle class, average Texan ticket which is a contrast tot he GOP side, Texas Democrats offering stark contrast.

Texas voters won’t have a hard time telling the difference between the Republican and Democratic candidates next year.

With the addition of San Antonio Sen. Leticia Van de Putte, attorney Sam Houston and party activist Steve Brown last week, the Democratic slate offers a vivid contrast to the Republican ticket, both in demographics and politics. And there are more announcements to come.

So far, Democrats are offering a diverse roster with most running unopposed on a strong progressive record, not unlike the so-called Dream Team in 2002. Republicans are more conservative than ever, with a ticket that is predominantly white and male.

http://www.mysanantonio.com/news/texas/article/Texas-Democrats-offering-stark-contrast-5005673.php


More at http://eyeonwilliamson.wordpress.com/2013/11/26/texas-democrats-must-provide-a-contrast-to-the-texas-gops-cruel-conservatism/ .

The article continues with a excerpts from the BurkaBlog at Texas Monthly.

Refusal To Pay Claims Casts Doubt On Texas Windstorm Insurer

A refusal to pay losses caused by Hurricane Ike has again thrust the bedraggled Texas Windstorm Insurance Association (TWIA) into the courthouse, while raising doubts over the agency’s process for resolving claims.

The city of Galveston sued TWIA Friday. It claims the agency is refusing to pay almost $14 million for damage caused by the storm, even after agency and city appraisers agreed on the cost.

League City is also suing TWIA over $3.4 million in unpaid damages it says the agency agreed it would pay.

TWIA declined to comment on the lawsuits. State Rep. Craig Eiland, D-Galveston, is representing the city of Galveston. Houston trial lawyer Steve Mostyn, who has secured millions for TWIA policyholders, is representing League City.

More at http://kut.org/post/refusal-pay-claims-casts-doubt-texas-windstorm-insurer .
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