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Are imperial governance and the related constitutional wreckage taking Texans down a dangerous path to a constitutional crisis?
“When first elected, the Capitol community had high hopes for Greg Abbott and the intellectual horsepower he brought to the game. Instead, they found a man willing to destroy the village – and not even in order to save it.” Harvey Kronberg, Quorum Report, July 29, 2021
What's getting overlooked in the demolition derby between the two parties is fundamental. The wreckage of the institution of the people – the Texas Legislature. One party is stuck in D.C.; the other party is stuck in the mud and attacking the people who serve them -- legislative staff.
We mean not to minimize the differences, but think about this. The Governor's veto of Article X of the state budget, unless there is a resolution soon, will withhold pay. We're talking about several thousand Texans who simply work at the Capitol. Their job is to serve us, the citizens.
What will the Texas Supreme Court do? Texans have known for a long time that justice is for sale here. The imperial court reversed course after the titan Houston-based oil company Apache Corp. contributed $250,000 in political support to justices seeking re-election. (Correction to the article. It was Apache executives who donated. Corporate contributions in Texas are illegal.)
We have two of the three branches of government tearing governance to shreds. The republic hangs in the balance of the third branch -- the Texas Legislature.
“We must all hang together, or assuredly we shall all hang separately.” Ben Franklin
Who will take on Texas imperial governance?
The Inimitable State Senator Kel Seliger (R-Amarillo)
One of the few independent Republicans is Amarillo’s State Senator Kel Seliger. Seliger is well-known as a conservative and a maverick. In his West Texas style, Sen. Seliger introduced a bill to take away Abbott’s line-item veto. Seliger tweeted,
“Vetoing this funding doesn’t punish legislators who left. It punishes regular hard-working folks who have nothing to do with voting for or against bills. We now have less than 4 weeks before the veto eliminates pay for Capitol post office staff, researchers, caseworkers in district offices, those responsible for answering open record requests, etc...They have not left their posts but are worried about health insurance, rent, and paying for their children’s school supplies.”
Egberto Willies, the most inclusive progressive political activist!
Egberto is a fantastic author, blogger, commentator, businessman, software engineer, and pure political activist with a big brain and a heart of gold. Based out of Houston, he reaches tens of thousands of people every day across the country.
A recent caller into Egberto's Politics Done Right Show was a man who furiously called him the "n" word. Egberto and the caller left the call as friends.
LIV wishes to thank Egberto for carrying LIV news on his popular national blog at EgbertoWillies.com. Tune in to his show at 3 pm, M-F, and to do the cross-partisan Egberto jig at PoliticsDoneRight.com. Here's LIV's Linda Curtis with Egberto on, "Politics Done Right."
GOOD Water News from WaterDefenders.org!
It may just be that local government becomes Texans' savior from imperial governance.
The Bastrop County Commissioners Court passed this resolution urging the Lost Pines Groundwater Conservation District to reject the "desired future conditions" (DFCs). The Resolution states:
"We find that the proposed Desired Future Conditions do not establish the required balance between development of groundwater resources, and conservation and protection of those resources." And further, "We support conservation and sustainable management of our aquifers and not management to depletion (mining) of their waters."
Similar resolutions are circulating within the Groundwater Management Area 12 -- 10 counties east of Austin.
In-migration growth is hitting these rural counties hard. Yet, profiteering water marketers, along with wayward public utilities (especially SAWS - San Antonio Water System -- with their Vista Ridge water pipeline, aka "San Antone Hose"), are exporting water to the IH-35 mega-growth corridor.
Some additional good news is this hard-hitting and well-researched article by Professor Heywood Sanders in the San Antonio Current. Sanders urges San Antonio officials to "stop playing nice" regarding CPS Energy and SAWS governance failures. Well done, Professor!
This is THE California Water Model -- moving masses of water for real estate development in areas with inadequate local supply. It is a proven disaster that the state of California is struggling to reverse. And it is already doing serious harm to landowner wells in the targeted rural communities just 40 miles east of the Capitol dome.
Mark Your Calendar!
Join the LIV "First Monday Forum" this coming Monday, Aug. 2, at 7. Call us at 512.213.4511 or email us for details. We will visit on Desired Future Conditions and ask for your opinions in a survey we are developing. See Event Page here.
The Lost Pines Groundwater Conservation District hearing on Desired Future Conditions is on Wednesday, August 18, at 6 pm at the Bastrop Convention Center. See Event page here.
Please come visit our booth at the always terrific annual independent farm and local foods conference, at Texas State University in San Marcos, Aug. 8 thru 10. See Event page here!
Speaking of imperial governance,
Rick Perry Triumphs Trump!
Ever since Rick Perry had his transportation henchmen ram the Trans-Texas Corridor (aka the “NAFTA highway”) down Texans' throats, we haven’t had much use for him. Perry almost lost his job over the TTC in 2006 with a paltry showing of 39%. However, you must admit that Rick is always good for a one-liner like the one in yesterday's Axios about Trump’s failed endorsement (and Rick's triumph) in the Texas Congressional District 6 runoff.
The Club for Growth PAC urged Trump to endorse the candidate who lost to the candidate backed by Rick Perry. Once the votes were in, Perry was quoted saying,
"We would just as soon the Club for Growth never darken the state of Texas again." Good one, Rick.
Corporate subsidies take BIG nosedive in Texas Oops!
Something most Texans of all persuasions agree on is ending corporate welfare aka government subsidies. Oops, Texas forgot to renew the dreadful Chapter 313 subsidy program. The even better news is the possibility that this "mistake" could kill the program nationally. Special thanks to UT Prof. Nathan Jenson for this very helpful article in UT News.
To tell you how stinky this program is, a solar farm was granted subsidies (property tax waivers) by the Smithville ISD. Shortly thereafter the company clear cut 1700 acres of old oaks in the Rosanky community for a “renewable” solar farm.
Rodney Reed Updates
We refer you to these two Austin Chronicle pieces. Admittedly the Austin Chronicle and we at LIV are biased. We think they got the wrong guy and everyone around Bastrop and Lee County seems to already know it. But, does the Judge? See this week and last week's pieces by Brant Bingaman.
Friday, July 30th is expected to be the last day of the evidentiary hearing for Rodney Reed. It may take Judge Langley a few weeks to issue his ruling.