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Volume XX Number 15 - September 29, 2021     RSS Feed   

A Periodic Newsletter for Committed Texas Conservatives

In This Issue

Are We Spinning Out Of Control?

America; A More Polarized Country By Brian Ettinger, Contributing Editor

State of Texas Future Financial Crisis By Brian Ettinger, Contributing Editor

What's Your Point?
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Gary Polland
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Thoughts This Fortnight

Are We Spinning Out Of Control?

Maybe it's your editor, but observing things happening to us over the last few months it seems we are in real trouble. Not just locally and statewide, but in our country.

Let's review some of the occurrences this year, you would say "you can't make this up!"

1.) The border is open in fact per Rep. Henry Cuellar (D-Texas) and it is bad for our border communities and the taxpayers who get to pay for welfare, free food, free medical and free housing. Illegal entry is rewarded, not punished. Note, while this is happening, American citizens are homeless in record numbers - neglected by our federal government.

What is truly bizarre, Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee (D-Houston) actually said "most of the border is well protected" and actually blames Gov. Greg Abbott. Maybe Sheila should explain to her constituents, who she has neglected for years, why illegals are more important to her than citizens of the United States.

2.) NYC Democrats (34) on their city council vote to allow non-citizens to vote in city elections. This crazy idea separates citizenship from voting rights. It also diminishes the electoral impact of working citizens of New York and giving the vote to working-third-world legal and illegal immigrants.

Is nothing sacred anymore? This exposes the Biden-radical left plan to never let power go. They plan to use this to keep it and give the vote to millions of people illegally in the country, changing our politics forever. No more competitive two-party nation.

3.) Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner is exposed for yet another local government corrupt bidding process. So, after County Judge Lina Hidalgo and her cohorts Rodney Ellis and Adrian Garcia were caught giving an $11 million contract to an unqualified single Democratic woman operatives firm to canvas Democratic areas "to encourage Covid shots," it turns out we have another rigged bidding process.

Turner's conduct was so egregious even his amen corner at the Houston Chronicle found fault. Good for the Chronicle. Turner's people approved sending a $15 million deal to one developer tied to his former (and future?) law partners Barry Barnes. This contract ignored the alternatives that would have built 362 units of affordable housing to 88 units for Turner's buddies deal.

Houston Director of Housing and Community Development McCasland blew the whistle on this and was rewarded by being fired.

Oh and it gets worse. Turner has appointed "his" City Attorney to investigate it while denying improper conduct.

This needs an independent investigation and comments from the "silent" Houston City Council except for Mike Knox, Edward Pollard, Michael Kubosh, where are the others?

4.) The Wall Street Journal reported this week that "President Biden is raising the refugee admission cap" to 125,000 for the government budget year beginning October 1.

Are we missing something? The estimates for this year are we will have well over 2 million illegal entries (that's the ones we catch). So the Biden quota is a joke, just like the idea our border is closed.

5.) The Democrats massive tax increase spending in Congress. A recent analysis of Biden-Sanders-Pelosi Tax increase reveals the following:

  1. Raising America's corporate tax rate to 26.5 percent, higher than China's and one of the worst rates in the world, will drive American jobs, manufacturing, research and IP overseas, reversing the gains of the GOP Tax Cuts and Jobs Act.

  2. Democrats' changes to America's international tax laws will favor foreign companies over U.S. companies.

  3. Small businesses struggling to get back on their feet after Covid will get hammered with crippling tax hikes. Higher 39.6 percent income tax rates (which is where most small businesses pay taxes), higher 25 percent capital gains rate (which impacts their ability to invest/attract capital), limits to the GOP-created 20 percent Small Business Deduction, expansion to small businesses of the ACA net investment tax of 3.8 percent, reversing the larger Death Tax exemptions for family-owned farms and businesses.

  4. Low-Income and Middle Class Tax Hikes. Both Congress's own non-partisan scorekeeper the Joint Committee on Taxation (JCT) and the Left-leaning Tax Policy Center that found that workers will shoulder the burden of business tax hikes. According to JCT, within 10 years of a corporate tax increase, two thirds of the tax burden are borne by lower-and middle-income taxpayers-plus lower wages. The Tax Policy Center found that President Biden's overall plan will raise taxes on 75 percent of middle-class families next year, rising to 95 percent of middle-class families over the long term. So much for "only the rich people and corporations will pay."

  5. Tax Breaks for the wealthy. A family making $800,000 a year is eligible for a direct government check of $12,500 to buy a luxury electric vehicle priced as much as $74,000. A couple making $500,000 a year in Oklahoma, for example, is eligible for nearly $6,000 in Affordable Care Act health subsidies. A household making $500,000 a year is eligible for more than $28,000 in paid family leave benefits - every year. And ... Democrats give a special tax break to America's wealthiest private universities with overflowing endowments.

  6. Billionaires Over Bartenders. Democrats are planning on repealing the $10,000 SALT (local and state tax deduction) cap before the reconciliation bill heads to the House floor. Most of the repeal - which could cost up to $440 billion - goes to cut taxes for individuals making more than $1 million a year. None goes to the 90 percent of Americans who don't itemize their taxes.

  7. Fewer Cures, Less Hope for Patients. Democrats offer a dangerous and false choice: lower prices on drugs now, fewer life-saving drugs in the future. A University of Chicago analysis found the Pelosi drug plan "would lead to a 29 to 60 percent reduction in R&D from 2021 to 2039 which translates into 167 to 342 fewer new drug approvals during that period.

  8. Subsidizing Big Business with Government Checks. Democrats create a massive new entitlement program that burdens small employers but rewards big business with a Universal Paid Medical and Family Leave cash benefits program run by the IRS. Unbelievably, taxpayers will now pick up 90 percent of the cost of paid leave for corporations who today pay for the benefit for their workers.

  9. The largest expansion of the welfare state in our lifetime. Democrats are creating two new entitlement programs that disconnect government benefits from work. From paid family leave that doesn't require individuals to be employed to get benefits, to a child care "guarantee" and monthly "cash for kids" child tax credit, individuals get paid to stay on the sidelines, with no expectation or incentive to work or move up the economic ladder.

  10. Attack on US investment infrastructure. By raising capital gains taxes, increasing individual tax rates, and expanding a new 3 percent investment surtax on small businesses, Democrats undermine America's successful investment infrastructure that rewards investment here in the U.S. - shifting investment decisions to Washington from individuals and the local community.

A recent poll by the Winston Group found that by a 2:1 margin, voters believe that keeping tax cuts in place would help economic recovery more than repealing tax cuts (51 percent - 24 percent). Moreover, a majority of Americans (51 percent) believe the Democrat's $3.5 trillion tax-and-spend plan will make inflation worse.

America; A More Polarized Country
By Brian Ettinger, Contributing Editor

America today is in the most polarized time since the Civil War. America fought a war over one issue, slavery, and as important as that was to our moral fiber today, we are fighting for the moral direction of America for the rest of this century. Restrictions on free speech by the media and social media controlling political thought, crime on the rise and our justice system favors the criminals and not the victims are testing our moral fiber as a country of rules and laws. Through our media, social media, and left leaning government bureaucrats put in place a system that glorified mobs, riots, Black Lives Matter over the other ethnic groups, open borders with no accountability of who is in our country and direct interference by the Federal Government regarding every aspect of our lives. Now America has lost its standing in the global community by the politicians making decisions that should have been left to our military and law enforcement. America made its military fail in its mission totally by politicians making decisions for political and short sighted reasons. A total lack of failure. Our education system is a total failure and needs a total overhaul as the teachers' unions and local school boards have too much control and are not listening to parents and student concerns. Stop rewriting history with critical race theories and teach the basic core curriculum, English, Math, Science and legitimate History. This includes teaching writing, spelling, typing and use of a computer. Allow for school choice and compensate our teachers more like we do our coaches. They are the next moral fiber after a child's parents. We need to put our differences aside and come together as a country like we did after the September 11, 2001, attacks. For a short time, people were proud to be Americans. Now we need to do this again. Object to the media and social media restrictions on free speech, get rid of this critical race thinking, control our borders, crack down on crime with long sentences for criminals. Social media has brought with it a non-civil tone and unless restricted to show neutral reporting they need to face large fines or lose their licenses. If they call people out for their political views and disagree by calling them a racist or shut down or boycott corporations for their executives' political views is wrong. All this needs to stop and the progressive radicals or right-wing extremists be held accountable and face criminal punishment for their actions. People need a free exchange of their views and ideas without violence or called names but a country that can disagree in a respectful and moral manner. Without doing this then heading down another more deadly civil war which will be a racial, ethic and a religious war and America will lose its moral standing as it has as a beacon of the world.

Brian Ettinger is a practicing attorney and contributing editor to TCR. He is a strong conservative who is concerned about America's future.

State of Texas Future Financial Crisis
By Brian Ettinger, Contributing Editor

Our state leaders need to have the vision to plan for the future or Texans will face a financial burden that will need to be addressed by higher taxes or cuts in state services. With the increase in population coming to Texas legally from other states and illegally from the southern border, this will create the need for more or improved highways, a new public transportation system, a commitment of more educational resources, law enforcement and other state services including health and welfare. These all cost money and even though the State of Texas currently has a rainy-day fund it will dry up unless needed for more State Revenue. Texas is attractive to businesses because of no income tax, no county or city wage taxes or inheritance tax. So, it would require increases in the sales tax percentage from 8.25 percent, increasing property taxes, increasing corporate franchise or increasing the employer's unemployment rates and taxes on gasoline, cigarettes and other products to raise funds. All the states around Texas have looked at alternatives to these taxes to raise funds, legalizing marijuana, gaming, and/or a consumption tax on certain luxury products. There are issues with all these options now in states with a population over 150 million people. In states that have legalized sports gaming over 45 million people in these states have placed wagers. These states are making substantial tax revenues from the license fees and tax on operations and now every state surrounding Texas has sports gaming or full casino gaming. These states are benefiting from Texans going across state lines gambling and placing wagers on sports gaming. The US Supreme Court has ruled on the legality of sports gaming in states that pass laws to legalize it. Texas needs leadership to pass legislation with regulations governing the licensing, license holders being Texas residents and subject to Texas Department of Public Safety background checks and regulated under the Texas Lottery Commission.This agency regulates the Texas Lottery, and charitable bingo over $6 billion dollars a year. No need to set up another state agency that costs state funds. The state can designate these funds for Public Education programs.

In the last legislative session, State Representative Harold Dutton and his staff did research on the different state sports gaming laws and looked at Colorado and New Jersey as the models to follow. This allows the state and license operator holders to both make it economically feasible. Representative Dutton, Chairman of the Public Education Committee introduced a sports gaming bill that with some modifications, made sense. He has the vision to see that the state, including Public Education programs, needs funding to make our students keep up with the future challenges. There were other gaming bills introduced from casinos to sports online gaming, but all of these were pushed by Las Vegas gaming casinos or racetrack operators to limit the number of licenses as being pushed by their gaming lobbyists who were paid large sums of money. So, pass a bill following the Colorado or New Jersey models that have at least 20 licenses issued and governed by an already existing state agency, the Lottery Commission that has regulatory authority. Put it to the voters and let them decide as the State of Texas needs to plan for the future now. Let me remind you that Texas was one of the last states to get rid of its blue laws allowing business to open on Sunday.

Brian Ettinger is a practicing attorney and contributing editor to TCR. He is a strong conservative who is concerned about America's future.

TCR on the Air

Gary Polland is now a regular on "What's Your Point?" hosted by Greg Groogan on Fox 26 Houston, appearing every other week. Tune in or set your recorder for 7:00 am Sundays.

Gary has recently undertaken the hosting duties on a new interview show, Tell It Like It Is. The show is available at American Star TV and at its YouTube Channel. Currently on hiatus.

Red, White, and Blue featuring TCR Editor Gary Polland on Fridays at 7:30 pm on Houston Public Media TV 8, replaying Saturday at 6:30 p.m. on Channel 8, Monday at 11:30 pm on Channel 8.2 and on the web at

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About Your Editor

Gary Polland is a long-time conservative and Republican spokesman, fund-raiser, and leader who 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 twenty-sixth year of editing a newsletter dealing with key conservative and Republican issues. The last twenty years he has edited Texas Conservative Review. As a public service for the last 18 years, Gary has published election guides for the GOP primary, general elections and city elections, all with the purpose of assisting conservative candidates. Gary is also in his 21st year of co-hosting Red, White and Blue on Houston Public Media TV 8 PBS Houston, longest running political talk show in Texas history. Gary serves on the Board of Directors of American Values, a national pro-family, pro-faith, conservative organization supporting the unity of the American people around the vision of our founding fathers and dedicated to reminding the public of the conservative principles fundamental to the survival of our nation. Gary is a practicing attorney and strategic consultant. He can be reached at (713) 621-6335.

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