Columns/Opinions

Thu
21
Feb
Edgar's picture

Texas Press Association Capital Highlights

By Ed Sterling

Senate panel focuses on funding of public

education

AUSTIN — When Texas legislatures meet every two years, lawmakers’ singular, must-do assignment is to produce a state budget.

Toward that goal, the Senate Finance Committee held meetings on Feb. 11, 12 and 13 to work on Article III of Senate Bill 1. That article focuses on the public and higher education parts of the state budget for fiscal years 2020 and 2021.

The meetings, replete with acronym-spattered expert testimony from the Texas Education Agency, the Teacher Retirement System and others, dealt with funding areas within public education. Lumped together, public education funding almost certainly will require more than half of the state’s general revenue. The ballpark estimate of total general revenue is $112 billion.

 

 

Thu
21
Feb
Edgar's picture

Bogus Gun Research

By John Stossel

Last week Rep. Nancy Pelosi warned President Donald Trump that if he declared an "emergency" to build a wall, "think what a president with different values can present... Why don't you declare (the epidemic of gun violence in America) an emergency, Mr. President? I wish you would... A Democratic president can declare emergencies as well."

Her fellow Democrats Sen. Kamala Harris and Sen. Elizabeth Warren quickly agreed.

Warren tweeted: "Gun violence is an emergency. Climate change is an emergency...

 

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Sun
17
Feb
Edgar's picture

The Idle American

By Dr. Don Newbury

For most of my adult life, I’ve bought into the “balance of nature” thing, perhaps ignited by reasonable absorption of elementary school “book learnin’” about plants, oxygen, carbon dioxide, tides and other stuff.

Now, I’m ready to “sell back” a long-held supposition that squirrels and acorns come out generally even on matters of supply and demand.

Hogwash. When we moved to our Burleson, TX, home 17 years ago, we gave little thought to the name of our neighborhood: Oak Valley. Dreams gravitated toward stately trees adding positively to our front yard. We should have been more concerned about too many leaves and acorns, as well as lazy squirrels—the very animals we expected to “squirrel” away acorns for the winter....

 

 

Sun
17
Feb
Edgar's picture

Green New Deal a Bad Deal for Freedom

from The Detroit News

That otherwise serious lawmakers are embracing the fantastical Green New Deal offered by the painfully green Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez is an indication of just how skittish Democrats are of their socialist wing.

Yet a number of otherwise seasoned members, including presidential hopefuls Kirsten Gillibrand, D-N.Y., and Cory Booker, D-N.J., and Senate sponsor Edward Markey of Massachusetts, are attaching their names to this hilariously idealistic manifesto.

 

 

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Thu
14
Feb
Edgar's picture

Texas Press Association Capital Highlights

by Ed Sterling

 

Governor gives lawmakers list of emergency items to tackle

AUSTIN — Gov. Greg Abbott named as his emergency priorities education reform, teacher pay, school safety, property tax reform, mental health services and disaster response in his Feb. 5 “State of the State” address to a joint session of the Texas Legislature.

The House and Senate may schedule committee hearings on bills related to items on the governor’s priority list before the 60th day of the legislative session, which hits on March 8. Consideration of all other legislation must wait until after that date, except for House Bill 2 and Senate Bill 2 — the state budget — which is already in the works.

Sun
10
Feb
Edgar's picture

The Idle American

There was much to chatter about when Uncle Mort reached his mailbox down the lane. A neighbor on the next farm was fetching his mail too, the day was sunny and warm, and their chance meeting suggested that a protracted visit loomed.

It did. They “prattled” away, each sticking to topics of self-interest.

Mort wanted to talk about how Dallas Cowboy Quarterback Tony Romo finally got to the Super Bowl (albeit as an announcer), and his friend was ready to share news from the county library. The latter took a part-time job there, fascinated by the job listing’s requirement to “liven up the place.” The librarian thinks too much has been made of the “shhhhhhh thing,” and that most folks really yearn more to chat than to read….

 

 

Thu
07
Feb
Edgar's picture

Slum by the Bay

By John Stossel

San Francisco is one of the richest cities it the world. It's given us music, technology and elegant architecture.

Now it gives us filthy homeless encampments.

One urban planner told me, "I just returned from the Tenderloin (a section of San Francisco). It's worse than slums of India, Haiti, Africa!"

 

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Thu
07
Feb
Edgar's picture

Capital Highlights

By Ed Sterling

Texas Press Association

Senate committee starts work on property tax reform

AUSTIN — Voters would have the power to prevent their local governmental bodies from increasing property taxes by more than 2.5 percent per year under legislation introduced in the Texas Senate and House on Jan. 31.

Senate Bill 2 and identical House Bill 2, both 116 pages in length, propose to amend the current law, in which local taxing authorities may increase taxes up to 8 percent each year before a rollback election would be required. Cries for relief are widespread, given the leeway current law affords and the fact that county appraisal districts may increase the value of property at the same time.

Sun
03
Feb
Edgar's picture

Weighing In On a New Year…

The Idle American

By Dr. Don Newbury

A friend observed that we have arrived at the time of year when Americans take on the weighty matter of discussing weight loss. As a rule, that’s as far as it goes. As the wordsmith said, “When everything is said and done, usually more is said than done.” Talk is cheap.

Oh, a few hang on, going to great lengths to avoid great widths. Those diet ads in the media make it seem so simple. Why, our lessening girth can be foundational in providing fodder for eventual mirth. Yes, there are goals to strive for that can enable us to look back with glee on the “portliness” of our past.

Seems to me we might just as well laugh about the front end of dieting, since few reach the finish line. One friend said his doctor told him he needed to lose 15 pounds. “I’m two weeks into trying, and I’ve got just 20 more pounds to go,” the patient grinned….

Sun
03
Feb
Edgar's picture

Catholic Schools Aren't 'Bastions of Bigotry'

from The Colorado Springs Gazette

Catholic Schools Week comes and goes the last week of January without mention here or fanfare anywhere else. This year is different. The celebration of more than 6,000 pre-secondary schools comes a week after portions of the mainstream national media and other left-wing activists rushed to smear Catholic schools as bastions of monstrous white bigots who disrespect minorities.

The pack media's frothing-at-the-mouth joy in defaming a few kids, to make Catholic schools the symbol of white privilege and intolerance, culminated with New York Times reporter Dan Levin trolling for an even bigger pile-on. He asks "Are you in your 20s or younger who went to a Christian school? I'd like to hear about your experience and its impact on your life" in a tweet that includes "#exposechristianschools."

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