TCR is amazed that the media is ready to narrow the race down to four candidates this early.
In reality, this is like preseason baseball and what happens does matter, but it won't determine in the end who will win the pennant.
This will be determined in the winter months of 2007-2008. So give all our fine GOP candidates a chance and evaluate them on conservative principles, domestic and foreign policy, consistency, hard work and finally, being a good listener.
Free Jose Ramos And Ignacio Compean
TCR joins fifty-five members of Congress, Phyllis Schlafly, talk show hosts Edd Hendee and Glenn Beck and others in asking why the government has imprisoned the border patrol agents who did their job and intercepted a dope smuggler, who was shot while trying to escape, and who then failed to properly report their actions.
But what should have been an administrative sanction resulted in 11 and 12 years in prison respectively!
What's also troubling were reports that this prosecution was ordered by top administration officials after being requested to do so by Mexican government officials!
Finally, the dope dealer was given immunity for his drug dealing to testify at the trial.
There are more revelations almost daily about other similar victims of injustice. You know this wouldn't be happening if Republicans were in charge. TCR hopes President Bush steps in and does the right thing. You can call or write him at the White House Comment Line (202) 456-1111 or www.whitehouse.gov/contact
Has Texas Government Become Dysfunctional?
TCR wonders what has happened? In the last year, three major state agencies have come under fire for criminal activity, and/or for incompetence and/or for ineptitude.
The three agencies are the Texas Youth Commission (TYC), Texas Department of Family and Protective Services (CPS) and the Texas Department of Transportation (TXDOT).
With TYC, the question is who was watching the store, how could guards and administrators be involved in the sexual abuse of children? Why didn't anyone do anything about it for so long?
Clearly, the wrong people were put in charge and the TYC board oversight was virtually non-existent. The TYC board finally resigned at Governor Perry's request after the Senate voted to abolish it. The hiring of Thomas Stickrath who led Ohio reforms in youth corrections as a consultant is another good step. Maybe he wants to run TYC? It's clear we need a hands-on board that is not hoodwinked by an administrator cover up.
CPS problems have long been chronicled since it became a part of the Texas Department of Health and Human Services and it continues to have problems. Despite legislative reforms which improved investigations into abused children last session, the system still has major issues and the caseworkers who actually try to help parents are essentially drowning due to huge turnover in workers (40% in Harris County-Houston). For those remaining, too many cases, too many court appearances and in some instances, marginally qualified workers. As for the good ones, they are underpaid. The CPS Administration has bastardized a program to help African-American families with their family problems into a quota system that has the effect of reducing African-American children in the system, making it harder to be removed from high-risk situations.
The most recent high profile disaster was a multi-relative placement of children (moved four times in six months) and not removed to foster care, which was revealed by KHOU-TV in Houston. The final score: one dead child and one with a sexually transmitted disease. This is another broken state agency that needs fresh, quality leadership and sweeping out of the incompetent, of the cronies and the hangers-on. The state has work to do here.
Finally, the Texas equivalent of the CIA, the Texas Department of Transportation. TCR continues to be astonished as to all the secret and confidential dealings of the agency. Hopefully the appointment of Ned Holmes of Houston will help here.
But clearly, the agency needs to be accountable to the Governor and Legislature on the TransTexas Corridor contract deal with rumors of limitations on free state roads. The deals need to be looked at, evaluated and approved after a public hearing by our elected, not appointed, leadership.
Republicans are supposed to be better managers than Democrats. It is time to start showing it, don't you think? Cleaning up these agencies would be a good start.
2006 Stats Regarding Texas Elections:
Is Dallas In Houston's Future?
High GOP Abbott
Low GOP Alcala
High GOP Hutchison
Low GOP Judge Generic
TCR Note: Only county-wide winners in Dallas were Kay Bailey Hutchison, Greg Abbott and David Dewhurst, all with weak, underfunded opponents.
Any increase in state and federal downdraft in 2008 means we will lose local races unless we offset it by additional conservative voter turnout.
Are We Undertaxed?
The eternal debate in Austin and Washington, are we overtaxed or undertaxed?
We know that federally the Bush tax cuts have held down the percentage take for government but that has been offset by the increasing bite on the middle class with the alternative minimum tax that was supposed "to get the rich" but instead gets the rest of us.
Supply-siders say tax cuts increase revenue, so let's look at the statistics and projections from the Federal Government Office of Management and Budget.
In 2003, total tax receipts were $1.78 trillion dollars and projected for 2007 is $2.54 trillion dollars, up an incredible 29.9%. Now do you wonder why Democrats say tax cuts for the wealthy are ineffective? Remember, the top 25% pays 83.5% of income taxes and 41% pay none. So taxpayers are paying more, not less into the system
COMING (Friday, March 30, 2007 at 8 pm) on Channel 8 PBS in Houston, Texas - The Connection - Red, White & Blue, featuring TCR Editor Gary Polland and liberal commentator David Jones with special guest Harris County Judge Ed Emmett. Coming in April: Earl Black and Merle Black.
About Your Editor
Gary Polland is a long-time conservative and Republican spokesman, fund-raiser, and leader who recently completed three terms as the Harris County Republican Chairman. During his three terms, Gary was described as the most successful county Chairman in America by Human Events - The National Conservative Weekly. He is in his tenth year of editing a newsletter dealing with key conservative and Republican issues. The last six years he has edited Texas Conservative Review. Gary is a practicing attorney and strategic consultant. He can be reached at (713) 621-6335.