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Texas

Texas Rep Dennis Bonnen Thinks It's Easier To Teach "Coonass" Katrina Evacuees Than Refugee Kids


by: Joe Deshotel

Wed Jul 30, 2014 at 09:00 PM CDT

State Representative Dennis Bonnen said in a committee hearing this week that there has been "way too much focus on the children" refugees along the border. He also made a faux pas during that same meeting that might have some Cajuns ragin' and maybe anyone who speaks Spanish as a first language.

The first rule of using ethnic slurs is -- don't. Sure there may be exceptions like referring to yourself for instance (if you're into that sort of thing) but certainly not at the dais of a Legislative Committee Hearing which you are chairing.

He was trying to describe why children from Central America might be harder to teach than evacuees from Katrina -- "we had to have a teacher who could do Coonass and English, but here we have to do Spanish and English, maybe, and there's a higher marker."

More below the jump...

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Texas Ranked 10th Most Expensive State For Energy, 1st For Greenhouse Gases


by: Joe Deshotel

Sun Jul 27, 2014 at 02:30 PM CDT

Texas has the largest carbon footprint of any state by far and now a new study shows that counter to intuition Texans are also paying more than most other American for their energy.

The cost of energy is higher for Texan's for the same reasons the state leads the nation in production of greenhouse gases -- a lack of investment.

We haven't invested in transportation infrasture to reduce traffic congestion or programs that lower pollution and its long term health costs, on top of the fact that our state leaders actively deny climate change and fight any attempts by the federal government to mitigate the problem.

See what's going on below the jump...

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Steve Brown Pushes For Reform Of Texas Railroad Commission, His Opponent Ryan Sitton Not So Much


by: Joe Deshotel

Sat Jul 26, 2014 at 00:00 PM CDT

Steve Brown is the Democratic nominee for Texas Railroad Commissioner, the agency that oversees the state's oil and gas industry. Brown is facing Republican Ryan Sitton who was an outlier in a primary otherwise dominated by the Tea Party.

Sitton was able to buck the Tea Party trend in large part because of his support from the very industry he would be tasked to regulate.

According to campaign finance filings the Texas Tribune reports Sitton received $152,000 from the oil and gas industry, more than half of his total money raised.

See why SItton may want to avoid talking about reform below the jump...

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Left In Texas Podcast Covers Week In Texas Political & Culture News


by: Joe Deshotel

Sun Jul 20, 2014 at 09:30 PM CDT

Left In Texas is a weekly podcast that covers the latest news in Texas politics and culture.

For the week of July 14th, co-host Imad Khan, special guest Lola Bakare of the Daily Dot and myself discuss Netroots in Detroit, the continued situation with the Central American minors at the Texas border, Rick Perry's surge in GOP polls, Wendy Davis' fundraising efforts, the invasion of Palestine, and the best way to fight off internet trolls.

It's our longest episode yet, but totally worth it!

Check it out at on twitter at @LeftinTexas and we hope you will like, share, subscribe and give us feedback on the show.

Listen below the jump!

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Rick Perry Signed Reduced Budget On DPS Border Security, Wants GOP To Kill Bill Addressing Crisis


by: Joe Deshotel

Sun Jul 13, 2014 at 04:06 PM CDT

Perry's biggest "oops" moment may not be that he couldn't remember the 3rd federal agency he'd like to nix as president, but that he signed a budget in 2013 that reduced the amount of state money allocated for border security to the DPS.

Today Rick Perry made the rounds on national TV to berate the White House over its handling of the border situation, but he also told Britt Hume of Fox News that he does not support Congress appropriating the $3.7 billion that President Obama has suggested to address the problem.

More on Perry's current budget cuts to border security below the jump...

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See What Happens When A Citizen Takes Greg Abbott's Advice to "Just Drive Around"


by: Joe Deshotel

Mon Jul 07, 2014 at 04:30 PM CDT

When Attorney General Greg Abbott ruled that citizens could not rely on their state government to inform them when harmful chemicals were in their neighborhood, the Dallas Morning News editorial board said he "stepped in it," and the Lubbock daily said he should reverse his decision.

Abbott told citizens to "just drive around" to look for harmful chemicals that could be near their homes or schools, but after news reports showed it wasn't so easy, the Lone Star Project produced its own video of just what happens when you question a business that may be stashing potentially harmful materials.

See the video below the jump...

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Open Carry Gun Movement Parodied With Open Carry Guitar Rally


by: Joe Deshotel

Sun Jul 06, 2014 at 02:00 PM CDT


photo: David Worthington
A group of North Texas musicians chose Independence Day to parody the Open Carry gun movement by holding an Open Carry Guitar Rally. The theme was "Don't Shred On Me," and led by musician Barry Kooda, supporters, marched and conducted impromptu jam sessions.

Kooda said the rally was in jest, but the idea took off far beyond his expectations, and because of its success the event could even morph into an annual event.

See What Kooda said about Open Carry Texas and how the group responded...

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"Cold Beer and Titties": Sexism at Texas Boys State Conference


by: jess_stoner

Fri Jun 27, 2014 at 09:49 AM CDT

(This is an embarrassment to our state. A program that trains future leaders should do more to eradicate this sexist behavior. - promoted by Katherine Haenschen)

At this year's Texas Boys State conference, 920 high school students, or statesmen as they're referred to, gathered at the University of Texas at Austin to form municipalities, run for office, and pass legislation.

During their hectic week learning the "rights, privileges, and responsibilities of franchised citizens," they debated the legalization of marijuana and drafted strategies for water conservation and education and immigration reform.

They also gave speeches touting "Cold Beer and Titties," designed campaign logos showing women in bikinis, and created a party platform shaming teenage mothers.

Read more below the jump.

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Race-Baiting Open Carry Advocates to March through 5th Ward in Houston Juneteenth Weekend


by: Joe Deshotel

Thu Jun 19, 2014 at 09:27 AM CDT

UPDATED: According to the Facebook event page this event had been "postponed" due to a "scheduling conflict" with another Open Carry rally.

In what they say is an effort to "show that gun rights belong to all" members of the open carry movement will walk through the 5th Ward on Sunday -- a day after many Texans will be celebrating Juneteenth, in a predominantly African American area of Houston settled by former slaves just after the Civil War. The Facebook event claims the event will be a "canned food drive" and donations will be given to the "First Missionary Baptist Church."

The walk is being hosted by CJ Grisham, founder of Open Carry Texas, who was convicted of interfering with police duties over an incident where he was being questioned about his AR-15. The resulting conviction led to no jail time and he plans to appeal, but he was fined $2,000 and lost his concealed handgun license for 5 years. One does not need a license to open carry a long gun.

Hear the results of my call to the 5th Ward Missionary Baptist Church...

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Tesla's "Gigafactory" has Governors Googly-eyed But Can Rick Perry Pull off A Texas Miracle?


by: Joe Deshotel

Tue Jun 17, 2014 at 10:01 AM CDT

I don't always agree with Rick Perry, but when I do, it's because he wants Telsa to come to Texas. With as much recruiting time as Perry spends in California, one would have imagined the Governor would have invited Tesla's Elon Musk to do business in Texas along time ago.

Well, in short he did, just not for Tesla. Musk's other out-of-this-world project SpaceX has had a good working relationship with the Texas legislature, has been creating jobs, and is preparing to launch rockets in South Texas.

It is hard to believe with the pro-business rhetoric of Texas politicians that the state would be anything but welcoming to the innovative car company. But while SpaceX is literally embarking on a whole new frontier, Tesla is infringing on an old establishment model of auto dealerships.

Read below the jump about the dueling Governors of America's largest states, as they do battle for Tesla's ultimate prize -- the "gigafactory"...

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