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TexasTowelie

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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: 69,569

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

Perry Looks to Hold His Own in 2016 Money Chase

Days after U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, launched his presidential bid in March, he swooped in on his hometown of Houston and raked in hundreds of thousands of dollars during a fundraiser just across the highway from his campaign headquarters.

Meanwhile, another Texas Republican with presidential ambitions — former Gov. Rick Perry — held his own fundraiser that evening just a mile away, walking distance for those interested in dropping in on both.

It was not the only time this year two White House hopefuls descended upon the same Texas city to raise money, and it probably will not be the last. But it was one of the more acute signs of a new reality for Perry, who will enter the 2016 race Thursday vying for campaign cash in a crowded field with strong pull among Texas' deep-pocketed donors.

"My goodness, I think it's much more fierce than it's ever been," said Fred Zeidman, a major Houston fundraiser with ties to a number of GOP hopefuls, including Perry. "We’re still the low-hanging fruit, and you’ve got 20 candidates chasing Texas money now instead of two or three candidates."

Read more: http://www.texastribune.org/2015/05/31/fight-texas-dollars-perry-looks-hold-his-own/

2 Boston men stabbed at Tufts University fraternity house

SOMERVILLE, Mass. (AP) — Two young Boston men were stabbed, one seriously, at a fraternity house at Tufts University early Sunday, leading the school to briefly issue a shelter-in-place order as police searched the campus.

Somerville Deputy Chief Paul Trant said in a news release that police "have a person of interest identified" and there is no threat to the surrounding community.

"It does not appear to be a random act, and parties involved are believed to be known to each other," Trant said.

He did not say if the person was affiliated with Tufts. Tufts spokeswoman Kim Thurler said the victims weren't affiliated with the university. She referred other questions about the investigation to Somerville police. Police did not immediately return a message seeking further detail.

Trant said police responding to the Delta Tau Delta house just before 4 a.m. found the men outside. He said the stabbings appear to have happened inside. The house is on Professors Row, a street that runs through Somerville and Medford on the campus just north of Boston.

Read more: http://www.chron.com/news/crime/article/Tufts-tells-students-to-shelter-in-place-during-6297324.php

Qatar extends travel ban on ex-Gitmo inmates; talks continue

Source: AP

WASHINGTON -- Qatar has agreed to temporarily extend travel bans on five senior Taliban leaders released last year from the prison at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, in exchange for Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl, a senior U.S. official said on Sunday.

The official said the ban would remain in place until diplomatic talks for a longer-term solution are completed. The restrictions had been due to expire on Monday under a May 2014 exchange for Bergdahl. U.S. officials said Friday the Obama administration was closing in on an agreement with Qatar to extend the restrictions for six months that could be announced this weekend. It was not immediately clear why that agreement had not been finalized.

The official said the U.S. remains in “close contact” with Qatari authorities “to make sure these individuals do not pose a threat to the United States.” As a result of the talks to date, Qatar “has agreed to maintain the current restrictive conditions on these individuals as we continue these discussions,” the official said.

The official said the former detainees are all currently in Qatar and remain subject to the travel ban and extensive monitoring. The official spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to publicly speak to the matter.

Read more: http://www.star-telegram.com/news/nation-world/world/article22756323.html

Teen-ager harasses Johnny Manziel; QB throws water bottle

An 18-year-old man and Johnny Manziel were involved in an altercation at a hotel pool near Dallas Sunday, prompting the former Texas A&M quarterback to throw a water bottle at him.

The Dallas Morning News reported: “According to James McLellan of the Irving police, no charges were filed after a friend of Manziel’s pushed an unidentified 18-year-old man who stepped in to break up the quarrel. McLellan said that Manziel threw a water bottle at the fan, who had been asking him for an autograph “for about two hours.” When the water bottle missed the man, he said, “Nice throw.”

Manziel was staying at the Four Seasons in Irving while attending the Byron Nelson Golf Classic.

Manziel spent 10 weeks in in-patient rehab at a facility in Pennsylvania. He was released in mid-April. He’s been seen at high-profile sporting events, taking in NBA playoffs, baseball games and a golf tournament.

Read more: http://collegesports.blog.statesman.com/2015/05/31/teen-ager-harasses-johnny-manziel-qb-throws-water-bottle/

U.S. swimming pools ban long breath-holding after deaths

A U.S. Navy SEAL hopeful and his friend, an off-duty lifeguard, were barreling through underwater drills in a pool just 3.5 feet (1 meter) deep. No one realized anything was wrong until their limp, unconscious bodies were noticed beneath the surface.

This summer, nearly four years after those deaths in a Staten Island pool raised alarms about a little known hazard called shallow-water blackout or hypoxic blackout, New York City is putting up warning signs at all public pools prohibiting prolonged breath holding.

It is part of a movement to raise awareness of the peril that has killed accomplished swimmers and to stop it by banning lengthy breath holding in the nation's estimated 300,000 public pools.

Shallow-water blackout occurs when a person tries to swim underwater for an extraordinarily long time, typically to build endurance. Swimmers often start by taking multiple deep breaths to go a longer distance underwater, causing their blood levels of carbon dioxide to plunge. Once underwater, carbon dioxide levels fail to rise quickly enough to signal the brain to breathe, oxygen levels fall rapidly, and the swimmer faints underwater and drowns.

Read more: http://www.reuters.com/article/2015/05/29/us-usa-drowning-pools-idUSKBN0OE16D20150529

Signs Posted in Fire Island Pines Urge Boycott of Businesses Owned by Cruz-Supporting Gay Hotelier

A Towleroad tipster sends along this photo of signs {see link} currently posted in Fire Island Pines urging a boycott of the Pavilion, Botel, Bistro, Sip-N-Twirl, Blue Whale, Pines Pizza, and the Cultured Elephant.

The boycott picked up steam this week after the New York Times revealed that Ian Reisner, the owner of the businesses as well as the OUT NYC hotel, lied about cutting a campaign check to ultra-conservative and anti-LGBT candidate Ted Cruz around the time Reisner and his business partner Mati Weiderpass hosted a reception for Cruz in their Manhattan penthouse. Reisner did, in fact, cut a check for $2,700, the maximum individual contribution allowed.

Since news of the reception broke Reisner and Weiderpass had been telling a different tale.

"There were no checks given, it was nothing like that," Reisner told New York magazine.

Read more: http://www.towleroad.com/2015/05/fipsigns.html

In case a T-bagger wants to make an issue: US Nears Deal on Extending Ex-Gitmo Inmates' Travel Ban

WASHINGTON — The Obama administration is closing in on an agreement with Qatar to extend travel bans for five senior Taliban leaders released last year from the prison at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, in exchange for Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl, U.S. officials said Friday.

A deal now being negotiated with Qatar would see the restrictions that expire Monday extended for another six months, the officials said. If the talks are successful, the agreement could be announced over the weekend, according to the officials who spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to publicly speak to the matter.

The White House on Friday acknowledged that discussions were underway with Qatar as to how the former detainees should be handled but refused to divulge details.

"The United States has been in touch with our partners in Qatar about the kind of steps that we believe are important to protecting the national security of the American people," press secretary Josh Earnest told reporters.

Read more: http://www.nytimes.com/aponline/2015/05/29/us/politics/ap-us-united-states-taliban-five.html?_r=0

Cassidy campaign to pay $4,000 in fines

Source: Baton Rouge Advocate

The successful 2014 U.S. Senate campaign of Bill Cassidy in Louisiana has agreed to pay a $4,000 fine for violating federal disclosure rules.

Cassidy, then a Republican congressman from Baton Rouge, defeated incumbent Democrat Mary Landrieu in the Dec. 6 runoff.

The violation involved the failure to report $162,160 in campaign disbursements by the relevant filing deadline in August, the Federal Election Commission said in its settlement agreement. The campaign included the amount in an amended filing in October.

Cassidy campaign committee treasurer Ralph Stephens said Friday that the money had come to the campaign via a wire transfer, instead of through more routine methods, and it was overlooked in preparing the August report. A later reconciliation of accounts disclosed the omission, leading the campaign to file the amended report, he said.

Read more: http://theadvocate.com/news/12504758-123/cassidy-campaign-to-pay-4000

Long before criminal indictment, Dennis Hastert had a Katrina problem

Even before his recent criminal indictment, former Speaker Dennis Hastert, R-Ill., was controversial in New Orleans. It dates back to Hurricane Katrina, when the then speaker told a local newspaper in Illinois that he didn't think rebuilding New Orleans was a good idea.

"It looks like a lot of that place could be bulldozed," he told the Daily Herald of Arlington Heights. Asked if the government should spend billions of dollars to rebuild," Hastert said: "I don't know. That doesn't make sense to me."

Hastert quickly backed off his initial comment, saying he wasn't advocating New Orleans be abandoned or relocated. He also apologized for missing a vote shortly after Katrina, in which the House approved over $10 billion in Katrina rebuilding funds.

A federal prosecutor in Illinois announced Thursday that Hastert had been indicted -- accused of trying to disguise bank withdrawals over $10,000 and then lying about the reasons for the withdrawals to the FBI. The real reason, the indictment said, was that Hastert in 2010 had agreed "to provide Individual A "$3.5 million in order to compensate for and conceal his prior misconduct against Individual A."

Read more: http://www.nola.com/politics/index.ssf/2015/05/senators_look_for_deal_on_govt.html

Heavy metal ballet


The spans of the Margaret McDermott Bridge take shape behind a field of wildflowers. (Tom Fox/Staff Photographer)

To assemble Dallas’ newest Calatrava-designed arches, two cranes perform a precise pas de deux with up to 100 tons of steel

In construction, it’s called a two-crane pick. Don’t let the simple name fool you. The complex maneuver requires precise execution to minimize risk and maximize safety.

As performed by workers assembling the new Santiago Calatrava arches near downtown Dallas, it’s an intricate industrial ballet, a slow-motion dance of steel using wire rope slings, shackles, spreader beams and lifting lugs, either welded on or bolted on.

Working in unison, two cranes lift and swing long arch segments into place. Some pieces weigh 100,000 pounds and more. Determining the exact center of gravity is critical.

“It’s not a job for everybody,” said Jeff Keller, a crane operator on the project.

Read more: http://interactives.dallasnews.com/2015/calatrava-arches/
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