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Monday, September 22, 2014

Bill Powers' State of the University Speech


"For men will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy,"
2 Timothy 3:2

University of Texas Student Union -- Earlier this afternoon, University of Texas President Bill Powers delivered his final "State of the University" Address.  The speech combined lofty rhetoric with cries of poverty and excuses for cost explosion.  Watch the whole thing below:

Broadcast live streaming video on Ustream

Highlights:
  • "To be immodest for a moment, I'm proud of what we've done for the last eight and a half years."
  • Sigh: "We've become a much more diverse campus and we've successfully defended the need for diversity in the Fischer case.  We've established the Department of African and African diaspora studies and the Institute for Urban Policy Research and Analysis, and we're currently establishing a Department of Mexican American and Latina and Latino studies."
  • Lulz: "To those who think universities never reform themselves -- that universities never change -- just look at what we have done.  Yes, I'm proud of what the University has done over the last eight years."
  • Once again, lulz: "My first observation is that to meet these challenges, we'll need to be tough-minded and disciplined."
  • Dept of Obvious Statements: "Moneyball means that it's not enough that a project will produce more good than it costs.  It also has to be better at doing that than competing good projects.  Our task isn't just to weed out bad projects from good ones, although we certainly need to do that too.  Out task is to be sleective even among very good projects.  Our task is to select excellent projects."
  • "I think that all of this is actually related to discussions about productivity.  It is what the call for increased productivity should be about.  We need to make sure our detailed designs are producing what we want to produce on a larger scale, that every investment we make -- including our teaching time and our students' learning time -- advances the vision we have for our outputs.  We need to do it in a disciplined, tough-minded way.  If we are going to focus on being productive and efficient, this is the right approach.  We need to do more than just focus on the cost side, simply making our work as cheap as possible.  We will make more progress by making sure that what we do on a detailed level is tightly aligned with the overall outputs we are trying to produce.
    • Translation: Don't expect us to be able to justify all the money we spend.
  • "There is one more ingredient we need for success.  Design can do a lot, but it can't do everything.  We sorely need adequate resources, both for recurring operations and for capital projects.  As I have said, we are at or near the bottom of our peer group in terms of per-year, per-student state resources, including general revenue, Available University Fund proceeds, and tuition."
    • Translation: Waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaah!!!

Davis Debate Meltdown Produces Abbott YouTube Victory


"For as the heavens are higher than the earth,
So are My ways higher than your ways,
And My thoughts than your thoughts."
Isaiah 55:9

Last Friday, Greg Abbott and Wendy Davis had their first campaign debate, it didn't go well for Davis:



[Note: Bryan Preston explains the substance of Davis' accusation here.]

Davis' performance speaks for itself, but what caught our attention was the amount of traffic the Abbott video has generated:


Almost 60,000 views on the video?!?  Out of curiosity, how is the Davis YouTube page doing?!?  From the front page:
  • Politifact Rates Abbott's Desperate FBI Claim Not True -- 150 views
  • Operation -- 1,635 views.
  • Davis Campaign's New TV ad, "Time went by" gets widespread coverage -- 237 views.
  • Time Went By -- 3,064 Views.
  • Wendy Davis Gets Personal on Morning Joe -- 1,054 views.
  • Wendy Davis Respond to Critics on Rachel Maddow --  335 views.
    • Personal Note: What's Rachel Maddow?!?
  • GMA: Wendy Davis Tells her story of challenges and triumphs -- 5,215 views.
  • "Court" -- 4,617 views.
  • Davis rallies U of H: "Abbott A part of Old Insider Network" -- 399 views.
  • KXAS: Greg Abbott suffers "Big Defeat" Following School Finance Ruling -- 164 views.
  • As Davis Lays Out Her Plan to Make College More Affordable, Abbott is MIA -- 434 views.
  • WOAI: Davis Wants to Make College More Affordable for Students -- 67 views.
  • KSAT: Davis Announce Plan to Make College More Affordable -- 71 views.
  • KENS: Davis Announce plan to Make Higher Education "More Accessible" -- 48 views.
  • TWC: Davis Proposes Plan to Create Educational Opportunities for All Texans -- 129 views.
  • "Manuel" -- 4,782 views.
  • In Houston, Davis calls for End to Statute of Limitations on Rape -- 202 views.
    • Personal Note: What could POSSIBLY go wrong?!?
  • En Houston, Davis propone que delito de violacion no expire -- 48 views.
  • In Dallas, Davis calls for End to Statue of Limitations for Rape -- 111 views.
  • In Odessa, Davis calls out Abbott for "Heinous Betrayal" in siding against rape survivor -- 101 views.
  • KAMC: In Lubbock, Wendy Davis calls out Abbott for Siding with Corporation over Rape Victim -- 116 views.
  • Greg Abbott enfrenta criticas sobre case de violacion -- 120 views.
  • Abbott's disturbing pattern of siding against rape victims get noticed -- 601 views.
  • ALS Ice Bucket challenge -- 615 views.
  • Harold Cook: Davis ad sets up strong contrast with Abbott -- 402 views.
  • Davis discusses Her Record Empowering Survivors -- 480 views.
  • Davis compares her record empowering survivors, Abbott's record Choosing Company Over Rape Victims -- 1,011 views.
  • Davis: Sobreviventes Se Merecen Justicia -- 376 views.
  • That's a total of 26,939 total views for the videos on the front page of her YouTube page, which includes her entire book tour.
Davis' debate meltdown has sent nearly 60,000 people to Abbott's YouTube page since Friday.  By contrast, her own YouTube page has fewer than 27,000 hits on its entire front page.  Fancy-pants political consultants have a word to describe this phenomenon: METRICS!!!

Friday, September 19, 2014

Tribune attempts to ignore Dan Flynn letter


"He who speaks truth declares righteousness,
But a false witness, deceit."
Proverbs 12:17

First things first, zowie:
The co-chair of a legislative committee that investigated University of Texas regent Wallace Hall failed to disclose conflict of interest in his conduct of the investigation: he had written one of the clout letters at issue in the controversy.

When Hall began asking questions about legislators pulling strings to get their unqualified friends and family members into UT, Speaker Joe Straus responded by assigning Reps. Dan Flynn and Carol Alvarado to lead a committee in finding grounds to impeach Hall.

Flynn, however, is one of the lawmakers who tried to pull strings for a family friend, and never disclosed that fact throughout his yearlong investigation, even as the question of legislative influence became the subject of two official investigations and independent media investigations, and ultimately led to the forced resignation of the university’s president, Bill Powers.
It gets better:
The Tribune didn’t bother to mention Flynn’s letter in its own report.
Read the whole thing here.

Roger Williams votes AGAINST arming Syrian 'rebels'


"Rest in the Lord, and wait patiently for Him;
Do not fret because of him who prospers in his way,
Because of the man who brings wicked schemes to pass."
Psalm 37:7

Good for Roger:
Republicans — Barton, X; Brady, Y; Burgess, N; Carter, Y; Conaway, Y; Culberson, Y; Farenthold, Y; Flores, Y; Gohmert, N; Granger, Y; Hall, Y; Hensarling, Y; Johnson, Sam, N; Marchant, Y; McCaul, Y; Neugebauer, N; Olson, Y; Poe, N; Sessions, Y; Smith, Y; Stockman, N; Thornberry, Y; Weber, N; Williams, N.

[Emphasis added]
Also, and we don't say this often, but kudos also to Lloyd Doggett for voting against this looming disaster.

Maybe he's smarter than his colleagues.  Maybe he just knows where public opinion stands in his district.  In either case, kudos to Roger Williams!!!

Thursday, September 18, 2014

Advocating Population Control in Texas


"Then God blessed them, and God said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply; fill the earth and subdue it; have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over every living thing that moves on the earth.”
Genesis 1:28

Remember the pro-eugenics group we discovered at the #HAILSATANTX Democrat convention?!?  The ones who are going to be presenting at SxSW Eco next month?!?  Yeah, they're back:
Texas women have suffered major setbacks to their reproductive health and rights this year.

At the federal level, the Supreme Court’s Hobby Lobby decision has made it more difficult for women to access their contraceptive method of choice. At the state level, the Legislature and Gov. Rick Perry have enacted new restrictions on clinics providing basic women’s health care and family planning services.

Of course, these decisions hurt Texas women and their families — but they also increase the risk of social, economic and environmental harm in our great state.

....

Since 2010, the population in Texas has grown by more than 1.3 million people. Much of the state is suffering from a severe drought that has caused more than $7 billion in damage as of January 2013. According to the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality, 796 public water supply systems in Texas currently have mandatory water restrictions in place. An additional 390 systems have voluntary water restrictions in place. Restrictions in big cities such as San Antonio and Austin are now commonplace, and the likelihood of more frequent extreme weather events is higher.

The solutions to these diverse challenges are mutually reinforcing. Greater access to voluntary family planning and more funding for comprehensive sex education in Texas would result in smaller and healthier families, fewer teen pregnancies, lower health costs and less pressure on dwindling resources. A healthier environment benefits the health of women and families.

Two recent studies found that giving women more freedom to time their pregnancies would provide 8 to 15 percent of the carbon reductions needed to prevent further climate disruption. And the cost would be small — about $3.7 billion per year — compared with other ways of cutting emissions on a large scale.

Providing access to family planning education and services should be recognized by policymakers in Washington and Austin as an important piece of the puzzle to creating a more sustainable, just and thriving state. Meeting the family planning needs of women in Texas and around the globe is key to protecting the health of women, the health of the planet and the availability of resources for generations to come. And every child deserves to be a wanted child.

[Emphasis added]
 Their words, not ours; read the whole (psychotic) thing here.

----

Author's Note #1: When they talk about 'access to family planning' it's a euphemism for taxpayer-funded abortion.

-----

Author's Note #2: Typically, this website finds Trib-bashing to be a pointless activity, but shame on the Texas Tribune for giving this sort of Malthusian bovine excrement the time of day.

Wendy Davis: Yet Another Scandal


"Then he said, “Throw her down.” So they threw her down, and some of her blood spattered on the wall and on the horses; and he trampled her underfoot. And when he had gone in, he ate and drank. Then he said, “Go now, see to this accursed woman, and bury her, for she was a king’s daughter.” So they went to bury her, but they found no more of her than the skull and the feet and the palms of her hands. Therefore they came back and told him. And he said, “This is the word of the Lord, which He spoke by His servant Elijah the Tishbite, saying, ‘On the plot of ground at Jezreel dogs shall eat the flesh of Jezebel"
2 Kings 9:33-36

They seem to be piling up, don't they?!?



Highlights:
  •  As a State Senator, Davis used her influence to land lucrative taxpayer funded contracts, then voted on bills that helped her own law firm.
  • Davis "profited from her day job" by "voting and twisting arms in the Senate."
  • She crossed from potential to real conflicts of interest.

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Letter from a Former Prositute


"You shall not afflict any widow or fatherless child. If you afflict them in any way, and they cry at all to Me, I will surely hear their cry"
Exodus 22:22-23

From Donny Pauling:
I became involved in the sex industry 7 years ago, working as a prostitute in a brothel known as the “Wildkat Ranch” in Mina Nevada. Nothing could have prepared me for the devastation it would reap upon me in the 1 1/2 years of working there… I met a girl picked up from a mental facility after her release, I worked with girls cleared to work because they hadn’t disclosed that they had been exposed to someone with genital herpes, I worked with women who had done nothing with their lives but bounce from brothel to brothel for 10 years… But this pales in comparison to the changes I saw in myself.

I lived in [removed] and would fly out to the brothel every month and a half to work for 3-4 weeks straight. During this time my schedule was from 12 noon-4am EVERYDAY (when clients were no longer supposed to be accepted, but let me tell you if they were the only one of the day, they would wake us up for the line up) Sometimes we would come out of the shower at 10 in the morning to find a man waiting for us to line up, and we had to pretend we wanted to be having sex again… These men that would come through, some were 400+ pound truck drivers, with penises that had smegma rimming them, we’d have to wash the penis during the “Dick Check” you know the part where we make sure they don’t have a current outbreak of something.. their bodies would smell from being on the road.. On one occasion I had my clitoris bit, I received a rectal tear, and my episiotomy from my last child was retorn.. Often the men would want to watch porn with us, or they would bring in porn magazines.. one man brought in pornography that could be classified as rape.. during this incident he slapped me and told me that I needed to act like I didn’t want it.. Another man tried to violently fist me.

They tell you at the Brothel that they are there to protect you, but on more than one occasion I screamed, and no one came- even though they have a speaker to the room where they make sure we aren’t asking for more money and not giving them half.. Out of it all, having to watch porn with the men was the worst though, because they would want to know what I liked, they would rub at my body or have me rub them off while they told me how they wished I was as pretty as her, or how they wished I was skinnier. They would make fun of my stretch marks and tell me that I should give them a refund.. The would tell me after I was done that they were going to try my friend and maybe she would be more like the girl in the video..

I would come home from this, and try to pretend that I was a better person because I didn’t need a loan for school now, or that I had a car I could use to drive my kids around.. But I am less of a person. I would have to continue the lies with my family, telling them the story that the brothel had me tell, that I was training for a new career in Real Estate and I was working for Jerry Dickerson the man that owned the brothel at the time.. They offered to write me a letter of reference if I ever needed one, and my tax statement looked normal to those who weren’t familiar with the location or industry.. but there were physical costs too. My vagina needs repair from the way it was stretched, it is nearly impossible for me to have a vaginal orgasm now, my anal tear took months to heal, but the worst is my brain. I gained weight from severe depression, had to be put on medication, and I saw any beauty that I had as a young women disappear before my eyes.

God is the only one that could fix that.. but it took A LONG TIME before I ever felt that God could want me back.
 Remember, it's legal in Nevada; read the whole thing here.