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Lessons in Disaster

Lessons in Disaster

By Gordon M. Goldstein
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Tag: Texas

Destroying a Village of Pedophilia

As the dust settles from the recent roundup of allegedly abused children from a fundamentalist retreat, some are asking whether saving these kids is worth the human cost.

Posted on May 14, 2008 READ MORE



godtube.com

GodTube Cashes In

A European hedge fund just invested $30 million in a Christian-oriented video sharing site. The vast majority of Americans identify as Christian, and while the economy may be taking a nose dive, there’s still money to be made on Jesus.

Posted on May 12, 2008 READ MORE


Culture of Misogyny

There is a link between the horrific violence committed against the women of the captive Austrian family and the apparent abuse of teenage girls in Texas, and it is the same unbroken chord that connects them tangentially—but significantly—to Hannah Montana’s fall from grace.

Posted on May 6, 2008 READ MORE


Cindy Sheehan
time.com

Cindy Sheehan Makes Bid for Pelosi’s House Seat

It’s not going to be an easy campaign, but anti-war activist Cindy Sheehan has made good on her pledge to try to take over Nancy Pelosi’s congressional seat this fall. Sheehan filed Friday to run for the House in Pelosi’s San Francisco district—but she has to collect over 10,000 signatures before she can make her bid official.

Posted on Apr 25, 2008 READ MORE


Rampant Sex Abuse Alleged at Polygamist Compound

A grim picture is emerging from the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints compound in West Texas, where 416 children have been removed to state custody and 139 women have left. Court documents allege widespread sexual abuse of teenage girls who were married at puberty to much older men by the polygamist sect.

Posted on Apr 9, 2008 READ MORE



DoD / Dan Heaton

Border Barrier Evades Green Laws

The Department of Homeland Security has received approval from Congress to ignore dozens of environmental laws in order to construct a 670-mile border fence. Environmentalists are worried about the impact the project could have on endangered species, and several property owners have attempted to obstruct the construction process.

Posted on Apr 2, 2008 READ MORE


Tracy Morgan

Saturday Night Surrogates

Shortly before the Ohio and Texas primaries, Tina Fey offered a raucous endorsement of Hillary Clinton that ended with the slogan, “Bitch is the new black.” Her friend and colleague Tracy Morgan has a few things to say about that.

Posted on Mar 17, 2008 READ MORE


Obama
Flickr / BohPhoto

Add Mississippi to Obama’s List—Texas Caucuses Too

Barack Obama won the Mississippi primary by 24 points on Tuesday. CNN is also projecting Obama as the winner of last week’s Texas caucuses. Now it’s a question of momentum and the tone of the campaign as the candidates head toward Pennsylvania, where Hillary Clinton is heavily favored in the polls. Updated

Posted on Mar 11, 2008 READ MORE


Obama and Clinton
about.com

Clinton Holds the Line

Hillary Clinton scored major victories Tuesday with three projected wins, including Ohio and Texas, which had been described by her campaign as must-win states. Barack Obama won the Vermont primary and kept it close in Texas.

Posted on Mar 4, 2008 READ MORE


Obama in Texas
AP photo / Rick Bowmer

Obama Gets Grilled

Perhaps responding to accusations made by pundits and politicians that Barack Obama has been given kid-glove treatment by the media, reporters at a San Antonio, Texas, press conference made sure they didn’t invite similar criticism Monday night.

Posted on Mar 4, 2008 READ MORE


McCain Talks Tough in Texas

As Democrats Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama battled it out in several states Tuesday, Republican front-runner John McCain sent out a word of warning about the “dangerous” state of the world in trying to win supporters in San Antonio, Texas.

Posted on Mar 4, 2008 READ MORE


Cinton

Clinton’s ‘Pretty Pathetic’ Time With Stewart

Hillary Clinton showed she could dish it and take it from Jon Stewart with her opening zinger in her Monday night appearance (via a not-so-very-synced-up satellite connection) on “The Daily Show,” pronouncing her decision to spend precious minutes with Stewart “pretty pathetic.”

Posted on Mar 3, 2008 READ MORE


Clinton Camp Defines Victory

After parsing the Clinton campaign media call, The Atlantic’s Marc Ambinder reports that “if Clinton wins the popular vote in Ohio and Texas, she’s staying in the race.” Texas has a somewhat bizarre primary/caucus hybrid that is thought to favor Barack Obama. Which is to say Clinton could find herself even less likely to win the nomination, but still feeling like a winner.

Posted on Mar 3, 2008 READ MORE



weblogs.newsday.com

Super Tuesday All Over Again

Once again the candidates are headed toward what has been billed as a climactic showdown, but which is likely to turn out like the others before it: one more bump in the road.

Posted on Mar 3, 2008 READ MORE


Clinton ad
youtube.com

Clinton’s ‘Red Phone’ Ad

In the waning days before the crucial electoral contests in Ohio and Texas, Hillary Clinton’s campaign has released targeted advertising emphasizing her readiness to handle the most dangerous security threats to the nation and suggesting that she would be better prepared than Barack Obama to pick up the dreaded “red phone.”

Posted on Feb 29, 2008 READ MORE


A Fair Question

Humor me while we conduct a little thought experiment. Imagine that Barack Obama lost 10 states in a row.

Posted on Feb 22, 2008 READ MORE


Hillary
zenpundit.com

Zogby: Clinton Isn’t Done Yet

Pollster John Zogby has crunched the numbers and he’s impressed by Barack Obama’s string of election victories, but he says “this deal is not closed” because Hillary “is after all a Clinton—she and her husband are popular, dogged, able campaigners.”

Posted on Feb 13, 2008 READ MORE


Lessons of the Chesapeake Sweep

The “Democracy Now!” host explains why Virginia is the new Massachusetts and Texas is the new Florida, and why Barack Obama is benefiting from more than a boost in demographics.

Posted on Feb 13, 2008 READ MORE


Obama’s Demographic Breakthrough

Exit polls, those surveys of voters as they leave their polling places, should be taken with a grain of salt. Having said that, CNN’s exit poll data from the so-called Potomac Primary shows Barack Obama crossing the demographic divide that has hampered him throughout the race. Seniors, white people, working-class voters and women—all traditional supporters of the Clinton campaign—came out for Obama in big numbers.

Posted on Feb 13, 2008 READ MORE


Clinton
nytimes.com

Clinton’s Worried Supporters

Clinton insiders talk a lot on the record about Hillary’s viability against John McCain, her confidence in Ohio and Texas and her determination to seat delegates from the uncontested Michigan and Florida primaries. But off the record, at least a few wonder if all that long-term thinking isn’t a bit premature for a campaign that is losing contests left and right.

Posted on Feb 12, 2008 READ MORE


A Conflict of Conscience

As they prepare to vote, thousands of Virginia Democrats are struggling to decide between two able candidates. Many of those will not make that decision until they have ballots in their hands.

Posted on Feb 11, 2008 READ MORE


The Democrats’ Three Choices

The Democrats’ hopes of regaining the White House hinge on how the party proceeds in the coming weeks and months. If momentum or civility reigns, they’ve got a shot. But if back-room dealing and cheating prevail, don’t hold your breath.

Posted on Feb 11, 2008 READ MORE


Hillary in Seattle
flickr.com

Clinton Looks Ahead

Sen. Hillary Clinton is focusing on the high points of the last week—her Super Tuesday successes in weighty states like New York and California, for example—and looking to potential wins in Texas and other elections to hold her position in the race for the Democratic nomination in coming weeks.

Posted on Feb 11, 2008 READ MORE


Momentum vs. Toughing It Out

With a win in the Maine caucuses, Barack Obama has scored four lopsided victories in a row and the map favors him for weeks to come. Hillary Clinton, meanwhile, responded to her troubles by replacing her campaign manager. Clinton now has to hold back Obama’s momentum long enough to win the big states weeks from now, a strategy that did not help Rudy Guiliani.

Posted on Feb 10, 2008 READ MORE


ron paul

Ron Paul Doesn’t Accept Evolution

The one and only anti-war Republican presidential candidate didn’t raise his hand when asked who doesn’t believe in evolution, but it turns out he may have wanted to. In this clip, Paul responds to a question about the incident by saying that it was an “inappropriate question,” but that “I think it’s a theory—theory of evolution—and I don’t accept it.”

Posted on Dec 22, 2007 READ MORE


dobbs and poe

Rep. Poe:  Halliburton/KBR Gang Rape Not ‘Isolated Case’

Texas Rep. Ted Poe, pushing for a probe into the case of former Halliburton/KBR employee Jamie Leigh Jones, who says she was gang-raped by co-workers in Iraq and then intimidated into keeping silent, urged other possible victims of crimes against U.S. contract employees working abroad to come forward, saying he believes Jones’ case is not unique.

Posted on Dec 13, 2007 READ MORE


U.S. soldiers
boston.com

Ron Paul:  Iraq War Will Cost $3.5 Trillion

It’s difficult to fully comprehend the total price tag of the Iraq war, but Republican presidential candidate Ron Paul has made some staggering calculations, coming up with a whopping $3.5 trillion—including “hidden costs” such as interest on the money we’re borrowing, and long-term health care for vets. 

Posted on Nov 20, 2007 READ MORE


Kinky Friedman
AP photo / Rick Vasquez

Kinky Friedman’s Ten Commandments

The always entertaining Kinky Friedman, author most recently of “You Can Lead a Politician to Water, but You Can’t Make Him Think: Ten Commandments for Texas Politics,” tells Truthdig why the Internet is the work of Satan, why politicians are “stuck on stupid” and why even God couldn’t beat the Republicans in Texas.

Posted on Oct 30, 2007 READ MORE


Kinky Friedman
AP photo / Rick Vasquez

Kinky Friedman’s Ten Commandments

The always entertaining Kinky Friedman, author most recently of “You Can Lead a Politician to Water, but You Can’t Make Him Think: Ten Commandments for Texas Politics,” tells Truthdig why the Internet is the work of Satan, why politicians are “stuck on stupid” and why God couldn’t beat the Republicans in Texas.

Posted on Oct 23, 2007 READ MORE


Al Gore and the Blue Sky Theory

Funnyman Durst sends up the absurd criticism of Al Gore and the Nobel Prize.  Why stop at global warming when there’s plenty in the world of science and nature to deny?

Posted on Oct 21, 2007 READ MORE



Photo by Arturo Perez y Perez / Courtesy of Malaleche

The Disasters of Border Crossing

Cinema, communication and American studies scholar Rosa-Linda Fregoso takes a look at recent exhibitions and installations by the Colectivo Malaleche, a Mexican artists’ collective that addresses the plight of women, migrants and other vulnerable groups through their work.

Posted on Sep 20, 2007 READ MORE


wright
AP Photo / Tony Gutierrez

Texas Church Calls Off Gay Vet’s Funeral

The family of Navy veteran Cecil Sinclair says it’s deeply insulted because a Dallas-area megachurch reneged on its offer to hold a memorial for the 46-year-old Gulf War serviceman just 24 hours before the service was to take place.  The reason?  Sinclair was gay—a fact that Sinclair’s sister insists High Point Church leaders already knew, despite their denials.

Posted on Aug 11, 2007 READ MORE


johnsons
AP Photo / File

Lady Bird Johnson Dies at 94

Lady Bird Johnson, widow of President Lyndon B. Johnson, died Wednesday at 94 at her home in Austin, Texas.

Posted on Jul 11, 2007 READ MORE


Texas Governor’s Order for Cancer Vaccine Blocked

Gov. Rick Perry of Texas has been rebuked by the state Legislature for ordering Texan girls to be vaccinated against HPV, the leading cause of cervical cancer. Lawmakers passed a bill by a comfortable margin that would block the governor’s order for four years.

Posted on Apr 26, 2007 READ MORE


Competitive Diplomacy

Share
Posted on Apr 5, 2007 READ MORE    


Ice sheet
utexas.edu

Thinning of Antarctic Ice Alarms Scientists

Polar ice experts warned Wednesday that a Texas-size block of ice in the Antarctic has thinned surprisingly fast. The Amundsen Sea Embayment contains enough water to elevate sea levels worldwide nearly 20 feet.

Posted on Mar 28, 2007 READ MORE


DeLay’s New Career: Comedian

Tom DeLay’s new self-obsessed memoir, “No Retreat, No Surrender,” turns out to be a hoot from start to finish. Take the title—this from a man who ended his disgraced career with a resignation.

Posted on Mar 22, 2007 READ MORE


Lost in the Lobbying

Merck raised suspicions about its cancer-fighting HPV vaccine with a cluelessly aggressive lobbying campaign, but a lifesaving drug is still a lifesaving drug.

Posted on Mar 1, 2007 READ MORE


Rick Perry
news.yahoo.com

Texas Governor Ignores the Zealots

Texas Gov. Rick Perry (R) has issued an executive order mandating the use of the HPV vaccine, which can help prevent cervical cancer. The conservative Christian’s decree trumps opposition in the Legislature and elsewhere from opponents who feel the treatment encourages premarital sex. Texas will be the first state to require that schoolgirls receive the vaccine.

Posted on Feb 2, 2007 READ MORE


Molly Ivins
AP / Henny Ray Abrams

A Tribute to Molly

  • Robert Scheer remembers the irreplaceable voice and generous spirit of Truthdig’s most beloved columnist.
  • Anthony Zurcher, a longtime editor and friend, says goodbye and pays tribute to Ivins’ life, work and wisdom.
  • Plus: Molly Ivins’ last column—a stirring call to action against the war.

  • Posted on Jan 31, 2007 READ MORE


    Bush and Ford
    Left: softvote.com / Right: wikipedia.org

    Bush to Avoid Ford’s State Funeral

    President Bush will skip out on President Ford’s state funeral on Saturday, instead remaining in Texas until services are held on Tuesday. Ford gave two embargoed interviews critical of the current president that were released shortly after his death.

    Posted on Dec 29, 2006 READ MORE


    Rodriguez
    Wikipedia

    Dems Grow Majority in Congress

    Democrats picked up another House seat on Tuesday when a victim of Texas redistricting ousted the incumbent in a Supreme Court-ordered runoff election. The upset victory brought the Dems’ total gain of House seats to 30.

    Posted on Dec 13, 2006 READ MORE


    Texas GOP Plays Atheist Card in Judge Race

    The Republican Party of Texas has sent out a newsletter calling a Democratic nominee for a seat on the 6th Court of Appeals a “professed atheist.” A local poli sci professor says he’s never seen the religion card pushed that hard. (via Andrew Sullivan)

    Posted on Oct 10, 2006 READ MORE


    Molly Ivins: Ring the Bell for a Texas Democrat

    Between an unabashedly clueless Kinky Friedman and Rick “The Coiffure” Perry, the Texas governor’s race is screaming for a dark-horse candidate.

    Posted on Oct 2, 2006 READ MORE


    Nude Greek art
    Image: ancientsculpturegallery.com

    Only in America. Seriously.

    A fifth-grade teacher is out of a job after leading a class through an art museum in Dallas. One of her students saw nude art; the student’s parent complained; the teacher is suspended.
    Even crazier: Local TV stations are blacking out Greek sculpture genitalia during newscasts.

    Posted on Oct 2, 2006 READ MORE


    Ann Richards
    From tsl.state.tx.us

    Molly Ivins: Remembering Ann Richards

    The Texas-based columnist reminisces about the former Texas governor, who died Wednesday from cancer. “Anyone who ever heard her speak at an AA convention knows how close laughter and tears can be.”

    Posted on Sep 15, 2006 READ MORE


    Ann Richards
    tsl.state.tx.us

    The World Just Got a Little Boring

    Ann Richards, the sharp-tongued trailblazer from Texas, died on Wednesday at the age of 73.  Though she served only one term as governor, Richards left her mark on Texas and the nation.  Known for a keen wit, Richards also accomplished an unprecedented promotion of minorities and women to positions of influence.

    Posted on Sep 14, 2006 READ MORE


    Abortion Rule for Texas Minors: Notarized Parental Consent

    Yep, you read right. The Texas Medical Board now requires minors seeking abortions to provide notarized parental consent forms. (h/t Feministing)

    Posted on Sep 3, 2006 READ MORE


    Molly Ivins: Let the Truth-Telling Begin

    Those who advocate withdrawal from Iraq ASAP have just as much of a duty to make the arguments for doing so—and to admit how much they don’t know—as those who got us into this mess five years ago.

    Posted on Aug 21, 2006 READ MORE


    EPA Rule Loosened After Oil Exec’s Letter to Rove

    A well-connected Texas oil executive reaches out to Karl Rove and presto!—thus disappears a new rule designed to keep groundwater clear near drilling sites.

    Posted on Jun 13, 2006 READ MORE


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