Thursday, December 31, 2015

2015 Texan of the Year: Beth van Duyne

"Resist him, steadfast in the faith, knowing that the same sufferings are experienced by your brotherhood in the world."
1 Peter 5:9

We've never declared a "Texan of the Year" in previous years.  We make no commitment to do so again in future years.  That being said, in 2015 one Texas elected official's grace under vicious fire merits special commendation.

We'd never heard of Irving Mayor Beth van Duyne when the year began.  Then, in February, it was discovered that a Sharia law tribunal was operating in Irving.  The tribunal 'judge' in his own words:

At the same time, American Laws for American Courts was under consideration in the Texas Legislature.  Given the identity of one particular lobbyist working against the bill, we knew Joe Straus would never let it pass.  Still, as part of that process, the Irving City Council passed a non-binding resolution supporting the legislative effort.

And that's when all hell broke loose.

Following the support resolution, Beth van Duyne was viciously attacked; at the next city council meeting, Islamists almost provoked a riot:

Following the commotion during the spring, things seemed to calm down...until the stupid clock kid showed up.

In September, the son of an Jihadist operative who had formerly run for President of Sudan (yes, THAT Sudan) dumped the insides of an alarm clock into a suitcase and brought the contents to school.  Given the similarity (at least at first glance) between clock kid's 'invention' and a suitcase bomb, he was detained temporarily while authorities investigated.  When he was released later that afternoon, rather than moving on from the mild inconvenience, clock kid ran to the SJW lynch mob shrieking about 'Islamophobia.'

Naturally, the President HAD to weigh-in.

While clock kid was visiting the White House and genocidal foreign dictators, Beth van Duyne was left to pick up the pieces in Irving.  In so doing, she was subjected to vile abuse.  Nevertheless, Beth van Duyne persevered.  By the end of the year, crime was down, taxes and spending were down, and jobs were up.

Life isn't fair, and the slings and arrows of outrageous fortune can ensnare anyone.  At the beginning of 2015, Beth van Duyne was an obscure elected official in a medium sized city.  She never sought international spotlight.  Still, when global jihadists thrust that spotlight upon her, Beth van Duyne rose to the occasion.  She refused to be intimidated.  Like this website, Beth van Duyne has ALSO endorsed Matt Rinaldi's re-election.  For these reasons, Cahnman's Musings is pleased to make Irving Mayor Beth van Duyne our 2015 TEXAN OF THE YEAR!!!

Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Campaign Donation Disclosure: $25 to DAVID SIMPSON (in Rick Perry's NAME)....

"Dishonest scales are an abomination to the Lord,
But a just weight is His delight."
Proverbs 11:1

We've been considering Rick Perry's indefensible endorsement against Jonathan Stickland.  That's certainly an offense worthy of breaking out the debit card, but a) we've already given Stickland money, b) Stickland is in good shape financially (with an upcoming fundraiser), and c) Stickland's going to win his race.  There is, however, a VERY competitive Texas Senate race where Rick Perry has also endorsed AGAINST a vocal opponent of corporate welfare.

Then we remembered that (like this website) Jonathan Stickland has endorsed David Simpson!!!

Which is how we ended up here:

Bottom Line: David Simpson was the first Republican to oppose Rick Perry's corporate welfare slush funds.  Without David Simpson, there never would have been a Jonathan Stickland.  To send a message to Rick Perry in a race where it will make a difference, donate to David Simpson here.

Tuesday, December 29, 2015

#StickwithSTICKLAND: Perry goes FULL RINO!!!

"Dishonest scales are an abomination to the Lord,
But a just weight is His delight."
Proverbs 11:1

[Update: James Trimm has more here.]

Whiskey Tango Foxtrot?!?

For those unaware, Scott Fischer is Jonathan Stickland's opponent in the Republican primary.

Stickland's response sums up the pertinent facts:
"I've served my district for nearly 4 years now and have never tried to represent Austin insiders, only the conservatives in my District," he said in a written statement to the Tribune. "I'm proud to have their support in my re-election campaign."
The special-interest crowd's reaction was predictable:

Brent Mayes, whom we've endorsed in SD-24, said it best:

Rick Perry jumps the shark. #SD24 #txlegeThe republican establishment brings out the long-knives against conservative...
Posted by Brent Mayes on Tuesday, December 29, 2015

Bottom Line: This is Rick Perry's most indefensible move since HPV. Perry has now endorsed in three #TXLEGE primaries this cycle, and in EVERY case he's endorsed AGAINST a vocal opponent of corporate welfare.  A clear pattern is emerging.

Straus' BIZARRE non-endorsement in HD-118

"Therefore by their fruits you will know them."
Matthew 7:20

For those unaware, there's a special election currently underway for a Texas House seat in Bexar County.  We noticed about a week ago that Straus was the only Republican in Bexar County who handn't endorsed the Republican candidate.  We'd been planning to write about it when we received the following e-mail about an hour ago:

SREC members: Why Hasn’t Joe Straus Endorsed John Lujan

Today, a number of members of the State Republican Executive Committee of the Texas Republican Party are asking Joe Straus why he refuses to endorse a popular Hispanic Republican in his own county.
John Lujan is a strong candidate for the GOP to pick up House District 118.  He is a solid, conservative, Christian, Hispanic entrepreneur and former firefighter.  Most local conservative and even moderate Republican officials have endorsed Lujan, including Senator Donna Campbell, Congressman Lamar Smith, State Rep. Lyle Larson, and County Commissioner Kevin Wolff as well as one of the Speaker’s Republican primary opponents – Jeff Judson.
But noticeably absent from this list is Joe Straus, who has refused to endorse Lujan.  Endorsing a fellow Republican who might pick up a seat from the Democrats is the bread and butter of politics.  It’s a no brainer. 
We are scratching our heads as to why this is so hard for Joe.  What is Joe’s real agenda?
Is it because Joe needs all the Democrat votes he can get to be reelected Speaker and actually favors Tomas Uresti, the Democrat?  If such is the case, he is willing to forego the interests and principles of his Party in order to maintain his power and allegiance with Democrats. 
Please Joe – be a leader for Republicans -- not just for Democrats! We believe Republican principles help people prosper.  What do you believe Joe?
SREC members endorsing this statement include:
Sue Evenwell – SD 1
Tom Roller SD - 31
Vicki Slaton – SD 2
Marvin Clede SD - 17
John Beckmeyer SD - 28
Karl Voigtsberger SD - 8
Mark Ramsey SD- 7
Jeff Judson SD - 25
Alma Perez Jackson SD - 26
Tanya Robertson – SD 11
Terri DuBose SD - 19

Addressing Texas' EXPLOSION of Special Taxing Districts....

"But the former governors who were before me laid burdens on the people, and took from them bread and wine, besides forty shekels of silver. Yes, even their servants bore rule over the people, but I did not do so, because of the fear of God."
Nehemiah 5:15

Watchdog outlines a subtle, but important, issue:
When former Texas Comptroller Susan Combs issued a report in 2012 on special purpose districts — largely invisible layers of government with the power to charge property and sales taxes — there were 1,675 of the suckers.

She sounded the alarm, waived the flag and irritated a few people in the process. But the special purpose districts continued to sprout up all over the state, now growing to about 2,000.

Combs is still beating the drum about the issue, even though she’s since left public office.

“There has been no effort to rein any of this in,” she said Friday.

Indeed, these ghost-like governments have continued to proliferate, according to data from the comptroller’s office. According to U.S. Census data, as of 2012, Texas has the third most special districts in the nation, trailing only California and Illinois.


Although a legislative committee was set up in 2013 to oversee the districts, Combs said, “They won’t do anything.” The lobby supporting the districts, from law firms that make a lot of money off the districts to mayors to judges to school superintendents, has been too powerful. Combs tried to get a transparency bill passed in 2013, but it was killed twice on the House floor on points of order.

“There’s a lot of interests that have a huge financial stake in the districts,” said John Colyandro, executive director of the Texas Conservative Coalition Research Institute in Austin. “Particularly those with not just taxing authority, but with bonding authority and that’s quite a lucrative area to be in.”
If you're a conservative, eliminating most (if not all) of these districts is a no-brainer; it's a testament to the entrenched power of taxpayer funded lobbyists that the number of these entities is exploding when it should be collapsing.

Here in Travis County, we're actually somewhat lucky.  While there are some small MUD's and water districts in outlying areas, for most of the County Central Health (our hospital district) is the only special district to which we're subjected.  Of course, their record is bad enough.

Enter Jay Wiley.

Last September, following their most recent abomination, Jay Wiley endorsed ABOLISHING Central Health.  To our knowledge, Jay Wiley is the first candidate to explicitly campaign on eliminating a specific local entity.  That stands in contrast with an incumbent who filed a bill last session to create a NEW special purpose district in Western Travis County.

Bottom Line: To curtail these unaccountable sources of taxation, legislators need to eliminate them within their districts. Unfortunately, the taxpayer funded lobbyist industrial complex loves these entities.  Kudos to Jay Wiley for endorsing the elimination of Travis' County's "Central Health" hospital district....

Monday, December 28, 2015

Judson secures MAJOR Conservative ENDORSEMENT

"He who walks with wise men will be wise,
But the companion of fools will be destroyed."
Proverbs 13:20

From a campaign e-mail sent this morning:

For Immediate Release
December 28, 2015
Contact:  Jeff Judson, 210-822-1292

Jeff Judson Endorsed by Nation’s Most Influential Evangelical Leader
Dr. James Dobson, described as “the nation’s most influential Evangelical Leader” has issued a strong endorsement of Republican Jeff Judson for Texas House District 121.  Jeff is running to unseat liberal Texas House Speaker Joe Straus, who would enter his 10th year in office in the next legislative session.
In his endorsement statement, Dobson said the following:

It is my pleasure to be among the many solid conservatives who are supporting Jeff Judson’s candidacy for the Texas State House of Representatives for Texas House district 121.

At this pivotal moment in our country, we must elect faith-filled, courageous men and women who are proven leaders and who will fight to reverse the trends that are eroding our culture.  Jeff Judson is one such leader who is up to the task and prepared for such a time as this. 

For years, I have joined millions of people across America in praying that God would raise-up leaders to restore this great nation.  I am excited that Jeff Judson answered that call and has stepped up to offer his services to the people of Texas.

As a private individual, I am honored to endorse Jeff Judson, and pray that his election will be the start of a new generation of leaders who will return this nation to the constitutional principles upon which it was founded.

Jeff Judson said, “It is such an honor to be endorsed by Dr. Dobson who I have admired for so many years and who has had such a huge impact on my family and on our nation.  2016 must be the year that evangelicals across our State and Nation step forward to restore our country to greatness and strengthen Texas as the beacon of freedom for America.”

James Dobson is the founder of Focus on the Family, and the Family Research Council. His daily radio program was heard daily by more than 220 million people in 164 countries, and broadcast in more than a dozen languages and on over 7,000 stations worldwide.
Jeff Judson

Bottom Line: This is HUGE!!!

BREAKING: Corrupt, Liberal Media HATES Matt Rinaldi!!!

"For he who sows to his flesh will of the flesh reap corruption, but he who sows to the Spirit will of the Spirit reap everlasting life."
Galatians 6:8

[Update II: Apparently, Rinaldi used the 2014 DMN endorsement in his first campaign ad, which was release this morning.  That would explain why it showed up out of the blue on our social media feeds.  We've posted the ad below.]

Our First TV Ad
I was proud to fight for our conservative values & be named the most conservative legislator in Texas. The Dallas Morning News was spot on when describing my opponent as the establishment's choice, compared to my conservative record.
Posted by Matt Rinaldi on Monday, December 28, 2015

[Update: We misread the DMN piece and thought it was for 2016.  Turns out this was the editorial they wrote for the 2014 race.  Considering that the same two people are running in this election, however, everything else we say in this piece is still true.]

LOL, the Dallas Morning News endorses Matt Rinaldi's opponent:
Importantly for his district, [Matt Rinaldi's opponent] displays a deeper, more realistic grasp of the issues, as with his pragmatic approaches to education and transportation funding, compared with the ideologically driven Rinaldi. [Matt Rinaldi's opponent] stands firmly in the GOP’s problem-solving wing, Rinaldi in the Ted Cruz wing. Political theology is a valuable starting point for a candidate, but an actual officeholder needs more to be effective.

Rinaldi, 38, is exceptionally bright and well-spoken but comes out on the wrong side of too many issues for this newspaper, including his opposition to the state’s critical water planning amendment and the eventual compromise on transportation funding. His positions appear heavily influenced by the hard-right Accountability First PAC, which has a hand in a number of races this cycle, although Rinaldi says he doesn’t sanction all of the group’s efforts.


For Republicans, [Matt Rinaldi's opponent], the son of former Lt. Gov. Bill Ratliff, offers a more reasonable, effective option that they would be wise to renew.
Read the whole thing here.

Bottom Line: Attacking Matt Rinaldi for being too much like Ted Cruz makes one wonder if the Dallas Morning News is trying to make an in-kind contribution to Matt Rinaldi's campaign (make a real contribution here)....

Sunday, December 27, 2015

Revelation 1:8-11 -- ALPHA and OMEGA (Part 2)

"I, John, both your brother and companion in the tribulation and kingdom and patience of Jesus Christ, was on the island that is called Patmos for the word of God and for the testimony of Jesus Christ. I was in the Spirit on the Lord’s Day, and I heard behind me a loud voice, as of a trumpet,  saying, 'I am the Alpha and the Omega, the First and the Last,' and, 'What you see, write in a book and send it to the seven churches which are in Asia: to Ephesus, to Smyrna, to Pergamos, to Thyatira, to Sardis, to Philadelphia, and to Laodicea.' "
Revelation 1:9-11

Pastor Danny Forshee.  Great Hills Baptist Church.  February 23, 2014:

  1. Identification ("I, John")
    - God entrusted the Mother of Jesus to this man and now He's entrusting the future of the world.
  2. Participation
    - Tribulation
    - Kingdom - The reign and rule of Jesus Christ.
    - Perseverance
  3. Explanation
    2 Timothy 3:12 - "Yes, and all who desire to live godly in Christ Jesus will suffer persecution."
  4. Inspiration
     "In the spirit on the Lord's day" (ie. Sunday)
  5. Proclamation
  • Norton Study Bible on v9: "Enduring Trials that come our way is a prerequisite for reigning with Christ."
    • Ibid: "Although John had been exiled in an effort to silence the word of God and the testimony of Jesus Christ...his witness continued with the writing of Revelation."
  • Polemicism is about going on offense.
  • Unless God sends a spiritual revival, we are due for some judgement.
  • "If you are a follower of Jesus Christ, this is the most exciting time ever to be alive."
  • "If Jesus...allows us to go through hard times, then I want to be faithful."
  • John: is NOT suffering for God because he did something wrong.
  • John was "humble and approachable"
    • If you have arrogance issues, God's gonna pass you by....
    • The thing God uses powerfully is a humble and broken spirit.
  • We WILL fellowship together during our Tribulations.
    • One of the most common bonding experiences among God's people.
  • John is neither above us or below us; he's our brother.
  • When you take a strong stand for the Gospel, you WILL suffer.
  • "Christianity moves on the knees of prayer and the legs of DOGGED persistence."
  • "You need to know His as your friend before you HAVE to know Him as your judge."

Saturday, December 26, 2015

Our Next Round of 2016 Candidate Endorsements

"When the righteous are in authority, the people rejoice;
But when a wicked man rules, the people groan."
Proverbs 29:2

[Author's Note: You can read our first round of candidate endorsements here.]

With the 2016 Texas Republican Primary barely two months away, Cahnman's Musings endorses the following candidates:


Wanye Christian:

Among the candidates who filed, this was an easy choice.  We supported Wayne Christian when he ran for Railroad Commission in 2014.  Wayne Christian got hosed in that election and this cycle offers an opportunity to correct that injustice.

[Note: For those unaware, it's worth pointing out that, despite the name, the Texas Railroad Commission is the primary regulator of Texas' Energy Sector.]


Steve Toth, CD-8:

Steve Toth is a friend of this website (we've gone to Church with the man).  To be honest, we wanted him to run for President.  We're pleased he's FINALLY running for Federal office.

During his time in the Texas House, Steve Toth was a persistent thorn in the side of leadership.  With GOP victory at the Federal level likely, it's important for conservatives to elect rank-and-file members who won't go along to get along.  We won't make any predictions yet about how the U.S. House will operate in 2017, but if a back-bench revolt is necessary, Steve Toth will lead it.

The 10-TERM INCUMBENT is the most liberal Republican in Texas' congressional delegation running in a safe Republican district.  As the sitting chairman of the Federal tax-writing committee, the 10-TERM INCUMBENT will have unlimited backing from the #WashingtonCartel.  Of course, the last time Steve Toth took on a committee chairman with close ties to the Speaker and every lobbyist in town, he won.


Brent Mayes, SD-24:

We've observed this race for several months.  We've met most of the candidates multiple times.  With C.J. Grisham's departure from the race (and subsequent endorsement), Brent Mayes is the clear conservative choice in this race.

Brent Mayes attended Konni Burton's candidate forum.  Brent Mayes ran for office to get Texas out from under the Federal Government's boot.  Brent Mayes has openly stated his willingness to oppose a Republican President.  Brent Mayes supports Constitutional Carry.  Brent Mayes wants to eliminate film subsidies.

To be honest, there is another candidate in this race we like.  Unfortunately, her background with the Texas Medical Association is a DEALBREAKER.  Vote Brent Mayes.

TEXAS HOUSE (Running for Re-Election)

Molly White, HD-55:

During the 84th #TXLEGE, Molly White gave global jihad a conniption fit.  That, by itself, is reason to support her re-election.  Molly White also voted for Scott Turner for Speaker.

Molly White is a powerful pro-life advocate who has spent years in the trenches of the pro-life movement.  Molly White worked with numerous pro-life non-profits and has stood for life in front of the United Nations.  A former GOP Precinct chair, Molly White was a grassroots activist long before she became a legislator.  Any grassroots activist who stands for life in front of the United Nations is OK in our book.  Pro-life champions like Molly White will, sadly, be necessary until the day Roe v. Wade is overturned.

Molly White is also a taxpayer champion who is no friend of the noxious cronyism that so often pervades the Texas House.

TEXAS HOUSE (Challenger/Open Seat candidates)

Bryan Slaton, HD-2:

Bryan Slaton is running against Dan Flynn; that alone is good reason to support Bryan Slaton.

When Dan Flynn became Joe Straus' hatchet man during the Wallace Hall impeachment fiasco, he earned the enduring enmity of this website.  There was a time when Dan Flynn was one of the stronger conservatives in the legislature, but over the years he's drifted closer to leadership.  All things considered, Dan Flynn is a strong case for term limits.

Bryan Slaton, by contrast, is one of the hardest working grassroots activists in this state.  During the 84th #TXLEGE, Bryan Slaton was a regular presence at the Capitol.  As a strong across the board conservative with the a work ethic to match, Bryan Slaton will be a welcome addition to the Texas House of Representatives.

Larry Smith, HD-54:

Of all the Candidates we've heard speak this cycle, Larry Smith might be the most impressive.

A ten-year veteran, Larry Smith came to the Kileen area during his military career and settled there after he retired.  Larry Smith wants to lead the diversification of the area's economy.  In an era of uncertainty surrounding the defense budget, relying upon Ft. Hood is an unsafe bet.

One final note: Larry Smith is committed to education reform where the money follows the child, not the bureaucrat; considering that this is the seat from which [Straus' education chair] Jimmie Don Aycock is retiring, electing a pro-school choice candidate in this seat would be particularly sweet.

Read King, HD-64:

Similar to Bryan Slaton, Read King is an extremely hard-working grassroots activist.  During this past legislative session, Read King was such a regular presence at the Capitol that we'd thought he'd temporarily moved down.  Turns out he was commuting to Austin from Denton.

Read King is a home school dad.  Read King is a Republican precinct chair and has been a delegate to several state conventions.  We will overlook the fact that he is also (*SHUDDER*) an Aggie.

In 2014, Read King came close to knocking off the incumbent; in 2016, this is an open seat.

Friday, December 25, 2015

Merry Christmas from Texas Right to Life!!!

"For unto us a Child is born,
Unto us a Son is given;
And the government will be upon His shoulder.
And His name will be called
Wonderful, Counselor, Mighty God,
Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace."
Isaiah 9:6

[Author's Note: In addition to it being Christmas, this also happens to be our 2000th post.  Thanks to everyone who made that possible.  We'll be back in the morning with another round of candidate endorsements.]

Now THAT'S Funny:

Thursday, December 24, 2015

Joe Jamail and the Fleeting Nature of Money

"Jesus said to him, 'I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.' "
John 14:6

Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal; but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieves do not break in and steal."
Matthew 6:19-20

"For we brought nothing into this world, and it is certain we can carry nothing out."
1 Timothy 6:7

Yesterday, discussing the passing of legendary U.T. benefactor Joe Jamail, someone we respect posed a question we can't shake:
Wonder which direction he took upon departure?

Talk about final.

This isn't a commentary on Jamail's politics.  This isn't a commentary on Jamail's support for the Athletic department.  This is simply an observation that, at the most important instant of Joe Jamail's existence, his billions were irrelevant.

The power in Jesus' death and RESURRECTION means more than all the wealth you can accumulate in this world.

Bottom Line: Jesus Christ died and ROSE FROM THE DEAD for everyone from the pauper to the Billionaire.  We pray Joe Jamail learned this the easy way before he was forced to confront it the hard way.  RIP.

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Houston Methodist "Hospital" MURDERS it's own Patient

"Do not be overly wicked,
Nor be foolish:
Why should you die before your time?"
Ecclesiastes 7:17

And the REPREHENSIBLE legacy of George W. Bush strikes again:
Houston, Texas- December 23, 2015: This morning, Texas Right to Life mourns the passing of 46-year-old Chris Dunn. One month after Houston Methodist Hospital determined that Chris’s life was not worth living and that his condition was not even worth diagnosing or treating, Chris succumbed to his illness. We commend Chris’s mother, Evelyn, and the other family members who labored tirelessly to protect Chris from death imposed by the hospital and legally sanctioned by the draconian Texas Advance Directives Act. Through Chris’s illness and disability, Evelyn never lost sight of the value of Chris’s life. Texas Right to Life is honored to have played some small role in comforting Chris and Evelyn as they endured this tragic circumstance.

We ask that you join Texas Right to Life in prayer for Evelyn and Chris’s family, and we pray that Chris is at rest now with our Heavenly Father where Chris can celebrate the birth of the Savior from above.

In the wake of Chris’s passing, Texas Right to Life will continue to challenge the unconscionable state law that allowed doctors to deem Chris’s life “futile” and continues to jeopardize the lives of countless other hospitalized patients in Texas. The legal efforts of Chris’s family and his lawyers to stall the state-sanctioned, involuntary euthanasia proved effective. Not only was Chris’s death not imposed by the hospital, but he and his family also raised unprecedented awareness of the unconstitutional and unjust nature of the Texas Advance Directives Act.

Throughout his lengthy ordeal, Chris and his family conveyed gratitude for the assistance of Texas Right to Life and the dedication of our supporters who rallied behind Chris’s cause. Until the very end, we worked together to do everything possible to ensure justice for Chris. Although the hospital refused to treat Chris’s illness based on a discriminatory “quality of life” judgement, Evelyn and Chris’s family take solace in the fact that Houston Methodist continued life-sustaining treatment and cared for him in his final days.

Together let us continue to pray for Chris’s family and for an end to state-sanctioned hospital discrimination and killing in Texas.

Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Paxton issues pro-#2A Campus Carry Opinion

"Then He said to them, 'But now, he who has a money bag, let him take it, and likewise a knapsack; and he who has no sword, let him sell his garment and buy one.' "
Luke 22:36

THIS is solid:

One thing in particular we'd like to commend Ken and his staff over is the section on whether or not individual professors could ban firearms in their classrooms.  This is a particularly insane idea that would render anyone in those classrooms during an active shooter situation a sitting duck.  Public Universities should have a uniform firearms policy across campus and any exceptions should be stated clearly.

The opinion also lays a solid foundation should litigation on this issue become necessary.

Bottom Line: If this is headed to court, Paxton's opinion is a strong place to start.

Monday, December 21, 2015

U.T. Admissions: Business as Usual under Fenves

"Through God we will do valiantly,
For it is He who shall tread down our enemies."

Psalm 60:12

New boss same as the old boss:
After years of controversy about admissions at the University of Texas involving letters of recommendation and accusations of “undue influence,” lawmakers have stopped writing those letters directly to the university’s president.

But big donors and well-known Texans still are.

Former U.S. Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison, UT donor Mike Myers and Houston attorney Roy Camberg are among those writing to help individual students, letters obtained by The Dallas Morning News under state open records laws show.

Just 12 such letters went directly to UT President Gregory L. Fenves, the records show. None came from Texas lawmakers, who were at the center of an investigation, called the Kroll Report, which found that they, along with donors and UT System regents, helped a group of 73 underqualified students get into UT-Austin over a period of several years.


After the Kroll Report, the UT System approved a new admissions policy that would allow university presidents to intervene in admissions but only in “very rare cases.”

Presidents are also required to inform the chancellor of instances in which they intervene, and they cannot admit any underqualified applicants.

UT System Regent Wallace Hall, who was a vocal critic of the admissions policy when the regents passed it earlier this year, said in a statement to the Morning News that the influence of these letters is unknown.

“As the new admissions policy specifically prohibits any verifiable oversight of admissions by the Board of Regents, these letters and other communications should come as no surprise,” Hall said in the statement. “Their impact and propriety can neither be known or understood by the governing board, which means no accountability.”

UT System Chancellor Bill McRaven has defended the policy, saying it is fair to students while giving university presidents flexibility to do their jobs.

Hall is suing McRaven for access to the underlying records in the Kroll Report. The UT System was willing to give Hall the records with confidential student information redacted, but he said the records are meaningless with redactions. This week a state district judge threw out the case, but Hall is appealing the decision.
 Read the whole thing here.

Paul Workman, Governor Abbott, and Formula 1

"Dishonest scales are an abomination to the Lord,
But a just weight is His delight."
Proverbs 11:1

Last month, a controversy erupted when Governor Abbott moved to reign in some of the more absurd subsidies to Austin's Formula 1 track; predictably, the special interests howled in protest:
But Circuit of the Americas Chairman Bobby Epstein confirmed the change places the future of the Austin race in serious jeopardy.

Although a few million dollars seems a tiny sliver of a sport contested by teams that spend hundreds of millions of dollars to compete, and that is viewed by an estimated half-billion people worldwide, little of that money makes its way to local race promoters, where profit margins are thin and typically depend on government support.

“To use a technical term,” Epstein said, “I think we’re screwed.”


Epstein said that amounted to “a breach of trust. The state clearly made promises. I think we made a deal, and we lived up to our end of the deal.”

He added: “It’s like you go to a restaurant and order a dinner, and then after you’ve eaten the meal they change the price.”

Nixing the Austin race would be catastrophic to Circuit of the Americas. Although the $300 million facility also hosts other races, such as MotoGP, and includes the Austin360 Amphitheater music venue, the operation revolves around the track built specifically to host F1 races.

In recent weeks the event already has felt severe financial strains. Epstein has described the waterlogged Oct. 25 race weekend as “financially devastating.” Early reviews of last weekend’s inaugural F1 race in Mexico City, meanwhile, viewed by some as direct competition to the Austin event, have been glowing.
The story surrounding Robert "Bobby" Epstein becomes more interesting, however, when one looks through Paul Workman's January 2014 and October 2014 (8 day) campaign finance reports:

Bottom Line: Formula 1 subsidies NEVER had the consent of the governed, either locally or statewide.  A final confrontation over those subsidies looms.  When it materializes, will Paul Workman stand with Governor Abbott and taxpayers, or will Paul Workman side with his special interest campaign contributors?!?

Sunday, December 20, 2015

Revelation 1:7-8 -- ALPHA and OMEGA (Part 1)

"Behold, He is coming with clouds, and every eye will see Him, even they who pierced Him. And all the tribes of the earth will mourn because of Him. Even so, Amen.

“I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End,” says the Lord, “who is and who was and who is to come, the Almighty.”
Revelation 1:7-8

Pastor Danny Forshee.  Great Hills Baptist Church.  February, 16 2014:

  • Assurance:
    • The IMPORTANCE of Jesus' Second coming (v. 7)
      • Zecheriah 12:10 -- "And I will pour on the house of David and on the inhabitants of Jerusalem the Spirit of grace and supplication; then they will look on Me whom they pierced. Yes, they will mourn for Him as one mourns for his only son, and grieve for Him as one grieves for a firstborn."
      • Everyone on Earth who hasn't believed will regret their unbelief.
    • The REALITY of His Coming.
      • 2 Peter 3:3-4 -- "knowing this first: that scoffers will come in the last days, walking according to their own lusts, and saying, “Where is the promise of His coming? For since the fathers fell asleep, all things continue as they were from the beginning of creation.”
      • HE.  IS.  COMING.
      • Christians should live on an eschatological precipice.
    • A CHARACTERISTIC of His Coming.
    • The SCOPE of His Coming.
    • An AFFIRMATION of His Coming.
    • The CERTAINTY of His Coming.
  • We get so messed up on the minuate of Eschatology that we miss the Big Point: JESUS CHIRST IS COMING AGAIN!!!
  • Throughout the Old Testament, God's physical presence is accompanied by clouds.
    • Exodus 13
    • Exodus 19
    • Dedication of Tabernacle and Temple.
  • God is our Cosmic LandLORD and we're the college students trashing the house.
  • If you don't believe, you'd better be right.
  • You can't read Revelation and believe in multiple Gods.
  • Norton Study Bible, Note on 1:8 -- The Lord is sovereignly guiding history toward its consummation, the victory of Christ over all.
  • "I love studying Revelation, it's a Book of so much HOPE!!!"
  • If you know God, you should have no fear of the Book of Revelation.
  • "If you know Him, it's wonderful; if you don' NEED to know Him!!!"
  • "All the tribes of the Earth..."
  • "Behold" precedes major Divine action in Revelation.
  • Those who Pierced Him = The Jewish people.
    • In the last days, many (if not all) Jews hearts will turn to Jesus.
    • Right now, God has hardened their hearts.
  • Most people do not reject Jesus based on theology.
  • "It's not that we don't know who He is, it's that we don't like what He says."
  • "There is coming a day when you know Him and you go to HEAVEN or you don't know Him and you go to HELL.

Saturday, December 19, 2015

Troxclair, Zimmerman DEFEND FIRST AMENDMENT!!!

"For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind."
2 Timothy 1:7

[Author's Note: The video below covers three separate agenda items, the section on the 'dark money' ordinance begins at the 4:20 mark.]

Last Thursday's Austin City Council meeting saw a number of shenanigans.  The disgraceful new anti-Uber/Lyft regulations have received plenty of coverage.  We want to focus on a seperate 9-2 vote on another agenda item.

A couple months ago, Mayor Adler proposed an ordinance to restrict anonymous speech in City elections.  This past Thursday, the full council considered the Mayor's idea.  Predictably, Ellen Troxclair and Don Zimmerman were the only council members who voted to protect the first amendment:

  • Zimmerman: "Concerned as to whether this can be done without transgressing freedom of speech."
  • Troxclair echoes Zimmerman.
    • Anonymous speech has a long history in our county.
    • "To me, this sets a very scary precedent."
    • The Federalist Papers and the Civil Rights movement were largely anonymous.
  • Adler: This ordinance "is of far-reaching significance."
    • DUH; that's the problem.
Bottom Line: We're still at the beginning of this unconstitutional process.  Council's vote Thursday instructs the City Manager to draft an ordinance, which council would then have to adopt formally.  If that happens, the city can then expect a lawsuit.  This issue will take several years (and election cycles) to resolve.  Still, kudos to Council members Troxclair and Zimmerman for being the lone voices Ausitnites first amendment rights.

To Take Lamar Smith at his word...

"Whoever falsely boasts of giving
Is like clouds and wind without rain."
Proverbs 25:14

Last month, we asked Congressman Lamar Smith the following question:

Earlier in the same event, Smith had made a prediction about Paul Ryan's speakership:

Obviously, those days are not over, as Breitbart explains:
[U.S.] House Speaker Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI) relied on Democrats to pass the $1 trillion dollar omnibus bill.

Most of the votes for the massive bill came from Democratic members of Congress rather than Republicans.

In the House, the Omnibus bill passed 316-113, with 150 Republicans voting yes and 166 Democrats voting yes.


But Ryan has tried to paint the budget as a victory for conservatives.

Ryan boasted this week on the Michael Medved show that the Omnibus bill lifted the ban on oil exports arguing that it’s “something we’ve been trying to do for 40 years in this country.” He added, “Think of what we get by removing the ban.”

However, in exchange for this lift, Democrats were able to put many liberal policies in the Omnibus bill, which explains why they ended up providing the necessary votes for the measure’s passage.

On Thursday, Pelosi bragged to her colleagues about all of the additional policy directives Democrats were able to put into the bill, saying, “Republicans’ desperate thirst for lifting the oil export ban empowered Democrats to win significant concessions throughout the Omnibus, including ridding the bill of scores of deeply destructive poison pill riders.”
That Lamar Smith personally voted against the bill is irrelevant; Lamar Smith voted for the "leadership" that used Joe Straus' playbook passed a bill written by lobbyists via Democrat votes that "gave away the store" to Democrats.

Bottom Line: Just last month, Lamar Smith told us Paul Ryan's ascendance meant the era of phony fiscal crises' was over.  That hasn't happened.  We'll see how the thirty year incumbent treats Paul Ryan between now and election day....

Is STRAUS laying the groundwork for a STATE INCOME TAX?!?

"He devises wickedness on his bed;
He sets himself in a way that is not good;
He does not abhor evil."
Psalm 36:4

During an appearance in Ft. Worth earlier this week, Joe Straus made the following alarming comment:
While the Texas Legislature had plenty of accomplishments, the next session, in 2017, will likely be more difficult on the back of falling oil revenues and the strong dollar.

“We are just about out of easy answers,” he said. “The next answers are going to require a lot of work and a lot of creativity.”

[Author's Note: Emphasis added.]
Given that we're talking about Joe Straus, we have to parse this answer.

In 2011, on the heels of the last budget shortfall, Joe Straus said: “We have no choice… you can’t cut your way to prosperity.” Later, when confronted about using identical language as Barack Obama, Straus 'joked' about having been "candid and realistic."  Nonetheless, Straus' eagerness to raise taxes in 2011 was well documented.

Furthermore, before he became speaker, Joe Straus voted for tax hikes on several occasions.

Alternatively, Straus could be staking out a negotiating position.  Remember, last session Joe Straus allowed Democrats to waste precious hours of legislative time with a debate over the minimum wage that was doomed to fail.  Even if a push for a state income tax failed (which it would), just having the debate gives Democrats leverage.

Bottom Line: Between global economic chaos and collapsing oil prices, by 2017 Texas could face a much more challenging fiscal environment.  Against that backdrop, Joe Straus talking about being "out of easy answers" and a need for "creativity" makes us nervous.  We've seen this movie before.

Friday, December 18, 2015

Brady and #NoRePete Sessions vote FOR #OMNIBUS

"Therefore by their fruits you will know them."
Matthew 7:20

Cross-referencing the list of Republicans who voted for the DUMPSTER FIRE of a spending bill that just came out of D.C. with the list of Texas Republican Congressmen with serious primary challengers, two names stand out:

  • Kevin Brady.
  • Pete Sessions
Bottom Line: Other members with challenges at least pretended to oppose this monstrosity, but these two chairmen were arrogant enough to give their voters yet ANOTHER middle finger less than three months before election day....

Thursday, December 17, 2015


"The righteous is delivered from trouble,
And it comes to the wicked instead."
Proverbs 11:8

Ladies and Gentlemen, your REPUBLICAN candidate for Travis County DA:

  • Aggie (yeah, we know).
  • U of H law school.
  • Prosecutor for "almost 20 years" in Harris and Travis County.
  • Left DA's office in 2004: "We had a discrepancy where I believe we should follow the law and they believed we should do something political."
  • "I do not have any criminal convictions and I do not have any outstanding judgments."
  • "There is no standards in the DA's office for what the recommendations are and that leaves everything open to influence and interpretations."
  • "How can you enforce the law if you aren't abiding by the law?!?"

Mark Pulliam extracts APOLOGY from TEXAS EXES

"And let us not grow weary while doing good, for in due season we shall reap if we do not lose heart."
Galatians 6:9

Quite the CAVE:



As an alumni organization, we represent viewpoints as rich and diverse as the University of Texas student body. In all of our communications, we strive to build bridges, create understanding, and spark thoughtful, respectful dialogue amongst our alumni. Unfortunately, this past week, while seeking to inform alumni on Fisher v. University of Texas, we fell short of that goal.
While the Texas Exes have taken no position as to the merits of that case, our intention when tweeting about Justice Scalia’s comments was to support our alumni, many of whom felt insulted by his line of inquiry during oral arguments. In our eagerness to defend our alumni, we deviated from our own standards when engaging in often heated debate and overstepped our bounds, and for that we apologize.
African American and other students of diverse backgrounds do succeed at UT-Austin, and the legions of alumni who stepped up to highlight their academic success are testament to that. We will, of course, continue to unapologetically defend the quality of all our alumni and our university 'til Gabriel blows his horn!
Antonio Garza, President
December 16, 2015
A high-ranking University source with whom we corresponded this morning called the Texas Exes statement "passive-aggressive"; we agree, but the fact that they felt compelled to address the controversy in the first place speaks volumes.

As Pulliam elaborated at National Review Online:
Tepid? Yes. Inadequate? Undoubtedly. (Taliaferro should have been fired.) But gratifying? Certainly. Even the most politically correct, Left-leaning alumni organizations can be confronted and forced to back down if only vocal members speak up.
Bottom Line: We can only imagine the backlash the Texas Exes received to lead them to eat crow.  That the apology wasn't sincere is irrelevant.  There is a pungent odor of blood in the water....