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Profile Information

Gender: Female
Hometown: San Antonio, Texas
Member since: Sun Oct 14, 2012, 11:45 AM
Number of posts: 11,295

About Me

Always a Democrat. I can't understand conservatives. I try to understand them, but I can't. They don't make sense. Our country has gone so far right since 1981. I was just an average American who took many Democratic values for granted when Reagan was elected. It was like the rug was pulled out from under our society. Reagan ruined our country.

Journal Archives

Trick or Treat - Nature Conservancy Closes on Bracken Bat Cave!

Friends of the Bracken Bat Cave can breathe a little easier today, now that a threatened encroachment by a high-density housing development is officially over.

That's because the real estate deal closed Friday, transferring the land from Galo Properties to the Nature Conservancy.

Defendants of the Bracken Cave have been working on this deal for more than a year. The effort was spearheaded by San Antonio City Councilman Ron Nirenberg, who took up the challenge to visit the cave right after he was elected in 2013.


Oct. 16, Nirenberg announced that the City of San Antonio, along with Bexar and Comal Counties, the U.S. Army, the Edwards Aquifer Authority, and numerous private donors had agreed to back the Nature Conservancy’s purchase of the property so that the housing development could be stopped.

More at link:http://tpr.org/post/nature-conservancy-closes-property-near-bracken-bat-cave
The deal was signed on Friday afternoon. Pics from Texas Tribune and San Antonio Express News

Tea Party loses court battle over targeting to IRS

Source: USA TODAY 5:03 p.m. EDT October 23, 2014

WASHINGTON -- A federal court dismissed two lawsuits against the Internal Revenue Service Thursday, ruling that the tax agency is no longer targeting conservative tax-exempt groups for greater scrutiny.

"Unless an actual, ongoing controversy exists in this case, this court is without power to decide it," U.S. District Court Judge Reggie Walton ruled, dismissing one lawsuit brought by True the Vote, a conservative vote-monitoring organization.

True the Vote, an offshoot of the Tea Party-affiliated King Street Patriots, had its application as a social welfare group help up because the IRS suspected it was engaging in direct political election campaigning, which is forbidden under section 501(c)(4) of the tax code. IRS agents found that its web site contained "Democratic attacks and Republican/conservative response," according to confidential IRS documents obtained by USA TODAY.

Walton said the IRS has assured the public that they're no longer screening applications for tax exemptions based on its political leanings, a practice that led to the dismissal of several top IRS officials when it was disclosed by Treasury inspectors last year.

Read more: http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/politics/2014/10/23/tea-party-lawsuits-against-irs-dismissed/17780557/

(Haven't seen this posted yet)

Texas Health Workers Use Tabasco to Help Train for Ebola

This is cool:

As Texas health workers prepare two new biocontainment units to help treat any future Ebola patients the state might have, they're are using one piece of training equipment from a neighboring state that may surprise you: Tabasco sauce.

At the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, where one of the units is being established, the staff has been practicing treating fake patients who have been sprayed at random with the peppery sauce as a stand-in for Ebola virus-laden fluids. Doctors and nurses practice dressing and undressing in their protective gear to avoid contamination, but if they feel the tingle of Tabasco on their skin, they know they've been contaminated.

"In a way, it gives feedback immediately," said Dr. Bruce Meyer, an executive vice president at the hospital, giving credit to the hospital's director of infection prevention, Doramarie Arocha, for the idea.

more at link: http://abcnews.go.com/Health/texas-health-workers-tabasco-train-ebola/story?id=26385702

Jumbotron prompts Alamo standoff between anti-abortion activists, city officials

Jumbotron prompts Alamo standoff between anti-abortion activists, city officials

By Joshua Fechter, Josh Baugh, Scott Huddleston : October 22, 2014 : Updated: October 22, 2014 4:31pm


San Antonio police and city officials blocked anti-abortion activists Wednesday from bringing a projection screen onto Alamo Plaza to display graphic images of late-term abortions.


But, city officials told the activists that using the "Jumbotron" would violate an ordinance banning digital signs on historic city property, including the plaza near the Alamo.


"I informed them that we would not permit that to happen, but that they were more than welcome to distribute any literature or any other information that they wanted to put out and we'd be more than happy to help them accomplish that," McManus told reporters.

Harrington said the group will "consider all legal remedies" against the city and will consider returning to the city at a later time. He alleged city officials were discriminating against his group based on their plans to project images of late-term abortions.

"I can tell you this: we're not going to go away, this isn't the end of this," Harrington said.

Texas prohibits nearly 70 percent of its counties from having a fire code

Environmental Writer
Published: 25 May 2013 11:17 PM
Updated: 26 May 2013 12:48 PM

Victoria County, a little slice of the Texas chemical coast, has nearly 39 million pounds of concoctions that can poison and nearly 11 million pounds that can catch fire.

“A potential for a catastrophic event” is how one federal agency described the risk if they leak. A temptation for terrorists, added another.

But Victoria County cannot use a firefighter’s basic tool for preventing industrial disaster: a fire code.

Texas won’t let the county adopt one.

In piney-woods southeast Texas, nearly 250,000 people within 25 miles of a paper mill could breathe chlorine or chlorine-dioxide gas after a worst-case fire or accident. Some could die.

Much more at link: http://www.dallasnews.com/news/west-explosion/investigation/20130525-texas-prohibits-nearly-70-percent-of-its-counties-from-having-a-fire-code.ece

Dallas Morning News coverage of the West Fertilizer explosion has been excellent.

Capital Buzzes with Talk of Special Session


AUSTIN — The Capitol was buzzing Friday with talk of Gov. Rick Perry calling a special session to deal with issues like redistricting, school choice and others left pending when the regular session ends Monday.

Perry is the only one who can call lawmakers into special session, and he'll set its agenda if he calls one.

He would not say Friday if that was his plan. “We're headed for the end of the session,” is all Perry said, though he earlier hinted a special session could occur if lawmakers didn't send him enough tax relief or investment in water infrastructure.

A laundry list of topics is possible for a potential special session agenda, including anti-abortion and pro-gun measures, expressing frustration that they were blocked in the regular session by Democrats, Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst said.

snip - 2 paragraphs left.................

JROTC instructor suspended with pay


Lackland airman barred from contact with O’Connor HS student

Northside ISD confirms retired Lt. Colonel James Payne, a respected JROTC instructor and founder of the program at O’Connor High School, has been suspended with pay pending an investigation by the district.

“He was placed on administrative leave because he did not follow district policy when it comes to field trips,” said Pascual Gonzalez, NISD spokesman.

He said Payne should have cancelled a field trip late last month to Camp Eagle in Rocksprings with 29 students after two parents had backed out as chaperones a few days earlier, or notified the principal of the problem.

Gonzalez said the district requires three parent chaperones on field trips.

He said instead, the 48-year-old instructor, who was on the trip as well, relied on a 21-year-old airman who claimed to be writing a story about developing responsibility and leadership among JROTC students, and their retired military instructors.

Gonzalez said the airman was not authorized to be with students because he had not been cleared by the principal and did not undergo a required criminal background check.

When they returned, Gonzalez said a parent told Payne of serious allegations.

“This airman from Lackland Air Force Base had inappropriate contact, communication and behavior with Northside students,” Gonzalez said.

Gonzalez would not discuss the specific nature of those allegations.

The military sex assault stuff is now infiltrating Junior ROTC

Exclusive: At Texas fertilizer plant, a history of theft, tampering

Saw this on General Discussion:


By Selam Gebrekidan and Joshua Schneyer

NEW YORK | Fri May 3, 2013 11:23am EDT

(Reuters) - The Texas fertilizer plant that exploded two weeks ago, killing 14 people and injuring about 200, was a repeat target of theft by intruders who tampered with tanks and caused the release of toxic chemicals, police records reviewed by Reuters show.

Police responded to at least 11 reports of burglaries and five separate ammonia leaks at West Fertilizer Co over the past 12 years, according to 911 dispatch logs and criminal offense reports Reuters obtained from the McLennan County Sheriff's office in Waco, Texas through an Open Records Request.

Some of the leaks, including one reported in October 2012, were linked to theft or interference with tank valves.

According to one 2002 crime report, a plant manager told police that intruders were stealing four to five gallons of anhydrous ammonia every three days. The liquid gas can be used to cook methamphetamine, the addictive and illicit stimulant.


The perimeter was not fenced, and the facility had no burglar alarms or security guards, he said. "It was a hometown-like situation. Everybody trusts everybody.

What the heck?? I can understand small town, but this just doesn't make sense. Even liquor stores and banks in small towns have decent security.

Hailey Dunn Update: Remains ID'd as missing 13-year-old Texas girl, attorney says


(CBS/AP) SNYDER, Texas - Remains found in a remote West Texas location last month are those of Hailey Darlene Dunn, a 13-year-old middle school cheerleader missing since December 2010, an attorney for the girl's family said Friday.

Texas Rangers informed the girl's mother, Billie Jean Dunn, earlier in the day that the remains found near Snyder in Scurry County last month were those of Hailey Dunn, the daughter she had reported as missing on Dec. 28, 2010, attorney John Young said.

He said Dunn, who lives in Austin, will be driving to West Texas to arrange for her daughter's funeral.

"She's trying to process the entirety of this," Young said. "She has to process that Hailey isn't coming home."

Officials were holding a news conference Friday afternoon.

The body was found about 20 miles north of the girl's hometown of Colorado City. The girl had been the subject of months of intensive searches in and around Colorado City and surrounding fields and landfills. More than 100 billboards featuring her picture and information about the case were set up along interstates in Texas and other states.

Mark Geragos blasts media allegations about ‘Armenian’ trace in Boston bombings


News | 26.04.13 | 12:08
Prominent US attorney ridicules media allegations about ‘Armenian’ trace in Boston bombings

Mark Geragos, a well-known Armenian-American criminal defense attorney, has described the ongoing speculation that an ethnic Armenian ‘Moslem convert’ could have been involved in masterminding the recent deadly bombings in Boston as “ludicrous” and "insulting" to Armenians as he spoke to CNN on Thursday.


“This whole speculation about a recent convert named Misha, which, by the way, is not an Armenian name, is insulting to Armenians everywhere, who, by the way, are the first Christian nation,” said Geragos, who also urged media to be more critical when passing around such information as ‘gospel’.

The prominent representative of the Armenian-American community, which has a sizable presence in Massachusetts as well, reminded of the significance of the current week for Armenians around the world as the 98th anniversary of the Armenian Genocide was marked on April 24.

“1.5 million Christian Armenians were wiped out by Moslem Ottoman Turks. So, the idea that there is some convert from Christianity to Moslem who’s doing it, who doesn’t even have an Armenian name, is ludicrous to begin with,” stressed Geragos, suggesting that the bomber suspects’ uncle pass a sobriety test -- “Because I think this guy was under the influence of something.”

Meanwhile, CNN reported more information today about the possible identity of Misha. It said he could be an Armenian from Azerbaijan. Hundreds of Armenians fleeing ethnic violence in Azerbaijan were granted asylum as refugees in the United States in the early 1990s. Many of them settled down in and around Boston.

An Armenian from Azerbaijan?? Hmmmmm...The story changes again.

Video below with Geoffrey Toobin and Mark Geragos:
Supporting civilian legal system for Dzhokhar Tsarnaev while blasting Gitmo and statements made by Republican chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, Representative Mike Rogers.

Rogers said that ever since the younger Tsarnaev, who is recovering from a bullet wound to his throat, was read his Miranda rights to consult a lawyer and to remain silent, he “has not continued to cooperate with the authorities.”

<src="?feature=player_detailpage" >

I think Toobin and Geragos do a good job of explaining the civilian legal process with regard to terrorists.

Personally I am sick of the fear mongering neocons. They are saying there is accomplice. They did interrogate Dzhokhar before reading his rights and used the public safety option. What if police had killed Dzhokhar in the shoot out? What could he say then?
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