Thursday, February 28, 2013

If a tree falls in the forest

And Republicans don't show up, does that mean it's not happening?

While we're not picking sides on this, but shouldn't those voted in to protect citizens show up to be educated?  Even if you don't believe, wouldn't it be a good time to ask questions?

A panel of scientists testified during a Senate committee briefing Wednesday that New Orleans may go underwater by the end of the century.

No Republican on the committee, including Sen. David Vitter, R-La., who is the ranking GOP leader on the panel, attended the hearing that featured scientists discussing global warming.

McCarthy said there is no general penalty for carbon emissions. “So we’re treating the atmosphere like an open sewer,” he said.

The oceans are rapidly warming and helping to power up storms and hurricanes, McCarthy said. Climate change is contributing to dramatic weather events such as longer droughts and even more extreme snow events, he said.

Read the rest here.

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Dallas is talking about Fort Worth


Someone should be paying attention.  Maybe someone in the "news".

Read it here

It's getting deep, quick.

Is the point of an interview to answer questions, or avoid them?

Would I be able to see the master plan so I can kind of understand it better?No, I don't think so. That's just confidential information for our company. It's not public.

The two sites on city property with pending zoning permits -- they're both in the floodplain, correct? Yes. ... We worked with the parks board in developing those sites and they approved them. And then we also got approval from the Corps of Engineers.

Who was it? I'm not gonna name names because I'd rather not do that.

Was any of this put in writing or in a contract, or was it a verbal understanding? There was some documentation that I can't discuss.

Well I can show you hundreds of wells in Fort Worth that are 300 feet from the nearest residential use, and they live in perfect harmony with their neighbors.

Hear that, Fort Worth, perfect harmony...

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Texas Fantasy Land

Read about our road crisis on

WHO did this?  Those same folks who YOU voted in.

Texas lawmakers ears ought to be burning as they’ve sunk Texas deep into road debt, $31 billion (in principle and interest). Texas now leads the nation in road debt, which busts the fairy tale fantasy touted by Texas politicians that Texas is doing everything right.

In a panel discussion with four state lawmakers moderated by Rodger Jones of the Dallas Morning News, Jones opened with the question, “Why the sudden focus on transportation funding?” which to those following transportation, has been a problem for a long time. Senator Kevin Eltife aptly declared, “Because we can’t sell anymore bonds. We’ve maxed out the credit cards.”

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Do the math

Recently Durango told you how Bud Kennedy mentioned (on his Facebook, not in the "news" paper) that the citizens of Fort Worth got screwed by Cabela's. 

That same paper posted some pretty telling info about Cabela's but never said, we're sorry for telling you it was the greatest thing ever, we were wrong. 

How many more projects and TIF's is the Fort Worth Star-Telegram promoting, and more importantly, WHY?

Remember those citizens that sued the city and spoke against Cabela's were labeled by the paper as naysayers and anti-business, when in reality, they were just speaking the truth.  YOUR numbers don't add up.

Growth surrounding the Cabela's sporting goods store in far north Fort Worth may have shown the store to be less of an economic development magnet than expected...

Cabela's said it wouldn't put a store in Fort Worth unless the city and other local governments agreed to finance infrastructure improvements around its Interstate 35W site through a tax increment financing district.

They did, but a city study last year showed the district significantly underperforming expectations. Taxable property values in the 981-acre district surrounding the 200,000-square-foot store had climbed to $45 million by 2011, but the figure by then had been expected to be $200 million.

Over the 20-year lifespan of the TIF, it had been projected to attract $573 million in new retail, hotel and commercial development. Activity would have to speed up very soon to meet that goal.

Trinity River Train

Our email has been filling up with emails to send in input on the latest Tarrant County boondoggle.

We're trying to figure out how it's any different than the Trinity River Vision.  The story and the players are all the same.

One of our members sat through a conference last week where many elected leaders (the same ones those asking you to contact elected) praised the rail expansion.  Those that did the electing don't want to pay for the boondoogle and realize it's a scam.  So will those sending us the emails explain how this boondoggle is any different from the rest?  Can they also explain to us why they keep electing the ringleaders?

Are some of the other cities catching on to the FW Way?

 --FT Worth bureaucrats seem to think that they can 'run the show' and everyone else will fall in line.

Train to Nowhere.

Given that there are not enough commuters that travel between Grapevine and downtown Ft Worth for this project to make business sense, we believe this is one of the largest wastes of taxpayer dollars ever seen in Tarrant County. 

Rail lobbyists are pushing once again for federal funding, tax increases and private investments to pay for an unneeded rail line that is the equivalent of a "train to nowhere."

Rail supporters would like to submit their report with no negative comments.

Your comments will be submitted with the report at the federal level and will help determine if funding will be granted.  A large number of negative comments will actually cause the request for funding to drop in priority, as it indicates low public support for the project.  We need to let Washington know that we don't want our money wasted on a very expensive project with so little benefit.  

What you can do to help prevent this phenomenal waste of taxpayer money:

1.Submit comments about the high cost, low benefit, and negative impact  to    Ask them to stop rail expansion in Tarrant County.  Note: Deadline is Feb 20, 2013 (may be extended to Mar 1).

2. Please help spread the word throughout Tarrant County.

Citizen comments (please feel to include any of these in your email):

--Many commuter rail systems around the country use electric trains (cleaner and faster), but this rail line will be diesel powered.

--Many suspect that taxpayers are being duped into paying for something that will primarily be for freight companies. 

--Diesel means more pollution and traffic congestion as a freight train can take 10 minutes or more to cross an intersection, including the southern entrance to Baylor Grapevine Hospital for more that 10 minutes at a time.

 --FT Worth bureaucrats seem to think that they can 'run the show' and everyone else will fall in line.  The suburbs will pay too much with little benefit and very little ridership and increased crime in the areas of the new station stops. 

--The only benefactor to this whole $1 Billion dollar waste is the freight companies who will get a line built at taxpayers' expense.

--The number of riders projected is extremely low.  The actual number of riders is almost always significantly lower than projected.

--While they have cut the proposed frequency of trains, the pollution, noise, traffic problems and the costs are all significant. 

--The original proposed cost of redoing the rails and infrastructure has gone from $300 million to nearly $1 billion. 

--The Ft. Worth T expects the federal government to provide $500 million of the $1 billion infrastructure costs. 

--The T wants every city along the line to either add sales taxes or give them the taxes from land along the line. 

--Grapevine has already given the T over $40 million over the past 6 or 7 years and they have nothing other than fancy brochures and a changed name to TexRail to show for the $$ they have spent. 

--The changes now don't even put a station in the Stockyards, where Grapevine wanted it.

--Colleyville has a grant from the US government of $1.3 million to put in "silent" crossings. This means that double gates will be placed at crossings, but that doesn't mean the trains won't blow their whistles, it just means they don't have to.   

--The proposed TEXRail project is not going to reduce pollution or traffic problems for North Texas--the T’s own study shows this. It will add pollution from autos / trucks due to the traffic issues for the many road crossings in NE Tarrant County, including 3 crossings in Colleyville alone. 

--The nearly $1 billion that the infrastructure will cost will never be returned to the local and federal budgets and the cost of operation of the line will recoup less than 10% of the actual costs in the fees collected from riders.

--The TexRail makes no sense financially.  There is no good way to get from Ft. Worth to North Dallas, Plano or other business areas. Once you get to a station, you have to find other methods of transportation to get to your destinations.

--The Preliminary Environmental Study doesn't give an estimate of ridership that comes close to justifying a rail line.  A set of bus lines would be far cheaper and more efficient and flexible.

--This is a boondoggle like this administration's Solyndra and other rail lines--like the line from Las Vegas to the far outskirts of Los Angeles.  It is not justifiable.

More info about rail expansion:

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

WHAT did he say?

Apparently Arlington has decided the citizens don't need to see what other citizens have to say.

WHY would Arlington's Mayor Cluck not want the citizens to see a portion of the council meeting? thinks it may be because of the idiotic racist comment that very same mayor made during a council meeting last year. 

WHAT do Arlington residents say?  You know, the ones that fund the circus.

Speak Up

Or forever pay increasing flood insurance.

FEMA has made new maps.  Which means depending on where you live, you may need new insurance because of it.

Does it sound rigged to you?

WHO is the NFIP? 

The 90 day comment period is open.  You better make some noise.

We'll be glad when that feces floating, wakeboard, restaurant, drive-in building, flood control project, the Trinity River Vision, is complete.  Won't you?

Once all comments and appeals are resolved, FEMA will notify communities of the effective date of the final maps. When a flood risk is identified, the next step is to consider the purchase of a flood policy from the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP). The NFIP is currently undergoing a thorough modernization. Meanwhile, contacting a local insurance agent is the first step to gather information about insurance. Folks can visit or call 1-888-379-9531 to locate an agent in their area.

Saturday, February 16, 2013

Since sliced bread

Back in the day, when Cabela's wanted to come to town, the Fort Worth Star-Telegram touted the move (which included huge tax abatement's) as the greatest thing since sliced bread. 

Now, Bud Kennedy says, "We're suckers".  No #$%@.  WHAT did the paper call those citizens that fought for Cabela's to not be built with YOUR money?

Durango has another field day with this latest "news".

What does the Fort Worth Star-Telegram say about things like the Trinity River Vision?  Oh right...wait until they spend a billion plus of YOUR money, then the paper will tell you, you're an idiot.

Only in Fort Worth...

First off it was not the people of Fort Worth who gave Cabela's tax breaks. That was done by the naive, incompetent, common senseless Fort Worth City Government, cheered on by the City of Fort Worth's propaganda purveyor known as the Star-Telegram.

The Star-Telegram repeated, over and over and over again, that the Fort Worth Cabela's would be the #1 Tourist Attraction in Texas.

Depending on who was writing the propaganda the number of tourists ranged from 4 million to 8 million.

I was so appalled that I emailed Bud Kennedy about his 8 million visitors claim, along with the #1 Tourist Attraction claim.

Bud Kennedy replied to me by saying that I must be against business. I replied something like, "no, I am not against business, what I am against is a newspaper making ridiculous claims about something like a sporting goods store becoming the #1 Tourist Attraction in Texas, drawing up to 8 million visitors.

Maybe Bud should read some publications from the rest of the world from time to time.  Then he wouldn't be so far behind.

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Field Day

The politicians broke ground on YOUR 97.5 million dollars.  WHY is a new Police and Fire facility needed?

Last year, the city sold its 48-year-old public safety training complex at 1000 Calvert St. to the Tarrant Regional Water District to make way for the Trinity River Vision.

Is that $100 million included in the TRV price tag?

WHO is paying for it?  That would be YOU.

The city is paying for the new complex through the sale of certificates of obligation, money from the Crime Control and Prevention District fund, and proceeds from the sale of the police headquarters downtown.

And Durango will have a field day with this

Mayor Betsy Price said, "We will be the envy of the nation."

You can read the rest here -

Friday, February 8, 2013

What a Newspaper Should Be

A letter to the Fort Worth Weekly about Betty Brink’s passing, ends up telling you what a newspaper should be.

Kudos to the Weekly for being a real “news” paper.  The residents of Tarrant County salute you.  You too, Mrs.Brink.....

To the editor: I’ve read Betty Brink’s obituary a half-dozen times, and it’s hard to believe she’s gone. I can’t say enough about what a woman I never actually met meant to me.

My only regret is that I discovered Betty very late. She was on the cover of the Weekly, carrying on about the mayor’s desire to put the whole town of Handley at risk by mowing down an old roadside motel using a new method, unproven and untested, for asbestos abatement. Brink outed him, and the resulting furor ended his little effort to test the “Fort Worth method” on the people of Handley.

To say that Betty was the face of the Weekly is not incorrect. After that story, if there was a cover piece with Betty at the keys, I’d pick it up and read it, no matter what it was about. She loved outing corrupt government, public waste, and outrageous behavior by elected folks, usually subjects that had been largely left untouched. Mike Moncrief hated her and at one time told the city council that any employee found to be communicating with the Weekly would be fired. It didn’t have any effect.

Amazingly, the stuff she wrote about never seemed to be of interest to the local daily. She brought me to the newspaper at age 40, when I’d never been interested in it before. As I began to read other alternative papers and other dailies, I began to have a distinct opinion about Fort Worth Weekly: It’s like no other paper out there. They’ll tell you the rest of the story, about things nobody else seems to want to give space to. And it’s not yellow journalism at all. It’s added-value journalism, from writers like Betty who know where to find the bad apples.

I will miss Betty forever. We can’t replace someone like that, born and raised here with a voice that resounds through the community like an air raid siren. You have to build people like that, and they must have a natural desire to do that kind of work. I never expected to find the Weekly’s kind of quality in an “arts and entertainment” paper full of sex ads in the back. Boy, was I ever wrong.

Chris M. Waring, Hurst

Governor Perry, Please stop talking…

Again, the comments are more telling than the article in the Fort Worth Star-Telegram.

Those who responded talk about our air, lack of water resources, lack of health care, education, high property taxes and no protection from corporate greed.  Though some agree more Californians should come on down –

Come on down, residents of liberal states. It may seem like a joke at first, but once enough folks come down and realize the back-peddling social mentality of the conservative right, why...there will be enough of you guys around to change things. So, yes....flock here. Come down in droves.

Be careful what you wish for, Perry and Abbott...

And WHO exactly is footing the bill for TexasOne?  Another PPP.  That means YOU are, dear Texans.

Democrats and residents of those states say Perry and Abbott are only embarrassing themselves and Texas with their antics.

Some wonder whether the Texas leaders' moves will create a backlash against a state that's already the butt of occasional jokes on late-night talk shows.

"I have a message for California businesses: Come check out Texas," he said in the $24,000 radio ad buy, paid for by TexasOne, a public-private partnership that markets Texas throughout the world as a prime business destination.

California Gov. Jerry Brown, a Democrat, dismissed Perry's radio ads.

"It's not a serious story, guys," Brown told reporters.

"It's not a burp. It's barely a fart.

Perry's encroachment into California -- which continues next week when he meets with business leaders in the high-tech, biotechnology, financial, insurance and film industries -- sparked the Sacramento Bee to write the editorial "Pity Rick Perry; his big state has big needs."

The paper cited a "high dropout rate, lack of health insurance coverage and economic disparities" in saying that Texas isn't exactly the nirvana that Perry might paint it to be.

The editorial said Perry's ad campaign is more of a "cry for help."

"Perry can't create jobs, he can only steal them from other states," according to the editorial

“Perfect Storm”

Recently we mentioned we have been receiving tons of email on the subject of water, or lack thereof.

The emails keep pouring in. recently posted an article on Tribes in the Southwest that are without water due to the cold snap and the aging infrastructure shattering with dropping temps.  If you think it can’t happen to YOU, here, ask around, find out how old the infrastructure carrying water to your home is.  You might be shocked.  Or terrified.

"We are facing an emergency that is putting lives at risk," said Navajo Nation President Ben Shelly, who last month signed a declaration of emergency in the reservation, which extends across parts of Arizona, Utah and New Mexico and has an estimated 220,000 tribal residents.

"People with health risks don't have running water, some communities have low water pressure that are putting health centers and hospitals at risk of closure," he said.

The freeze, during which temperatures barely rose into the teens during the day, ruptured pipes, some laid in the 1950s, in Window Rock, the nation's capital, as well as the small town of Fort Defiance and in other smaller communities where many tribal members tend livestock, weave handicrafts and make jewelry.

Shelly is seeking $2.8 million in federal and state aid to fix waterlines across the nation, and to cover costs for operating an emergency center.

And the Fort Worth Weekly does another great job at letting you know just how much “blue gold” could end up costing YOU.  YOU better be paying attention.  YOU owe it to YOUR kids.

For those of you playing along at home, the Supreme Court will now here the Tarrant Regional Water District’s case concerning suing Oklahoma to take their water.

“I hate to use the analogy, but we’re looking at the perfect storm,” she said. “It’s kind of hard to calculate what the price of water will be when in some places there just won’t be any.”

WHERE do we start?

With the Fort Worth Way, where else?

The Fort Worth Star-Telegram article is very telling.  Though it’s like telling the same story over and over again.

A council member who was the only paid member of the nonprofit in 2010.  A board member is the sister of said city council member.  The city repaying over $220,000 to the government.  The city wanting to shut the nonprofit down.  HUD, Jay Chapa, TAD, economic development, floods, missing documents, mineral rights, gas leases…Just another day in Fort Worth.

The nonprofit, United Riverside Rebuilding Corp., would have to shut down and surrender mineral rights.

"We have no problem giving them the property," Phyllis Allen, a board member and sister of Gray, said for the board.

"But how the city can decide we need to cease to exist is beyond me," she said. "We're independent."

The dispute hinges on two homes United Riverside built and sold. In May 2006, United Riverside, with Gray as director, accepted $287,000 in federal Housing and Urban Development money administered by the city's housing department.

United Riverside maintained that it sent the documentation early on but that the originals were later destroyed by a flood in its offices. The city has said it never received the documents.

Through April last year, the city has repaid the government about $700,000 on grants made from 1994 to 2006, Chapa said. During that period, the city made grants to nine organizations under the program and repaid money to the government in cases related to seven, he said.

The total money the city distributed to the organizations involved: likely more than $5 million, Chapa said.

WHAT is up in Watauga?

The suspended city manager has now resigned.  The mayor has resigned (had you not read the article in the Fort Worth Star-Telegram, earlier this week, closely, you might have missed the one sentence noting this).  WHY would that not make for its own article?  Isn’t a mayor resigning news worthy?

An online comment compares Watauga to Haltom City.

Maybe they could coin their own phrase…the Watauga Way.  Watch out, Fort Worth might try and take credit for that.

Good luck to the Watauga residents, sounds like the need it.

Q & A

A letter to the editor in the Fort Worth Star-Telegram asks a great question. A comment left provides the answer. Even sums it up in one word.  Good work, people....

I have seen many commercials from energy companies promoting the Barnett Shale region and saying how they are protecting the water tables.

How many millions of gallons of water does it take to fracture said shale at each well, and how are they protecting the water table where they are pumping the polluted water back into the ground?

-- Charlie Barnes, Arlington 

There is nothing good that can come from pumping millions upon millions of gallons of chemicals into the ground under our feet. Nothing.

-- Nell Stebbins

Monday, February 4, 2013

Are you smarter than a 6th grader?

We know the answer.

A group local of sixth graders will be doing the Water District’s job for them.   All we can say is Hallelujah, at least someone is.

Three units of Wied's gifted and talented language arts classes are participating in a year-long project called Operation H {-2}O. The project is intended to bring local, national and global water concerns to the forefront and help craft a plan of action.

The objectives of the Cross Timbers students include educating students and the community about the limited availability of drinking water in Texas and the world.

Their action plan includes promoting water conservation and encouraging lawmakers to put water infrastructure funding in the Texas legislative budget.

They are raising money to purchase equipment for an Indian village to provide its inhabitants with clean water.

"If we run out of water by 2030, I'll only be 30 years old," Buhr said. "It'll be a short life."

Read more here:

Another one??

Another child nearly drowns in the Trinity River.

What’s it going to take?

The Tarrant Regional Water District previously said, the area is clearly marked with signs.  Some beg to differ.

Remember, these folks want to give you better access to the highly contaminated river.

The mother of the last victim the river claimed speaks out on

Sunday, February 3, 2013

How many unknown's make a right?

Ask the NCTCOG, yeah, the COG, again.

Questions about the Cotton Belt Rail?  You ain't alone.

Sweet gig if you can get it. 

The North Central Texas Council of Governments on Thursday approved guidelines to trigger the private development of the Cotton Belt Rail line, a proposed 62-mile passenger train service from southwest Fort Worth to Plano.

Approval of the guidelines, which are required by law, will clear the way an unidentified group of developers to submit its proposal for creating stations in three counties and 13 cities, including Fort Worth, Grapevine and possibly Haltom City.

The unidentified developer presumably would seek to invest its own money in the project, which is expected to cost more than $2.7 billion, in exchange for the right to collect taxes and fees from property values along the line.  (Is this like Do Not Pass Go, Do Not Collect $200?)

The Fort Worth Transportation Authority is seeking to develop more than half of the same rail line for its TEX Rail project through federal grants. Officials have said the projects can complement each other.

Some Tarrant County residents, including elected leaders in Grapevine, have expressed concern that the Cotton Belt project could take away cities' control of property along the line. But council of governments officials sought to assuage those concerns.

"There sure is a lot of speculation about what we're obligating cities along the corridor, which is nothing," Tarrant County Judge Glen Whitley said.

Saturday, February 2, 2013


We couldn't help it, a letter to the editor in the Fort Worth Star-Telegram made us laugh....

I teach seven periods of geometry every day to over 190 high school students. Several of my students come from terrible home situations. Many have never been taught basic manners and respect, and some still count on their fingers when doing basic math operations.

And Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst's solution to the educational crisis facing our state is to arm teachers and fund special weapons training for them?

"God forbid we should have an active shooter crisis in our schools," Dewhurst said.

To which I would add, God forbid we should have idiots setting educational policy for our schools.

-- William M. Brown, Fort Worth

What's the catch?

Poof!  The entire T board gone.

Remember when the Ethics committee made a decision the Fort Worth mayor didn't agree with?  They were all axed.

A different board and a different mayor, but the same old story.  It's the Fort Worth Way. 

WHY would anyone want an entirely new board?  WHY didn't the "news" paper find out?

Something is up.  Wonder what it's going to cost YOU?

Read Fort Worth Council turning over T board in the Fort Worth Star-Telegram.

"If they replace this board, they will be losing a lot of expertise," she said. "I don’t think the city council or mayor really understands the repercussions of what has to be done on this."

Wonder WHY?

The comment on this Fort Worth Star-Telegram article is better than the article concerning Haltom City schools and guns...

Wonder Woman makes some great points.

Wonder if she'll get an answer?

Wonder WHO she is...

I wonder.....Why the Star-Telegram continues to seek out the opinions of this one old political has-been as a representative of all the citizens of Haltom City?

 I wonder.... why the Star-Telegram cannot find any one else in this town with an opinion?

I wonder.... why the headline screams, Former Haltom City Mayor when he hasn't been the Mayor in nearly 20 years.

Isn't the relevant tie to the news that he sits on a BISD official BOND Committee?

I wonder.... why the headline does not read, BISD Committee Member Supports Guns In Schools ?

I wonder.... why this article doesn't have a balance of opinion. The School Board does not have this on their agenda, only Mr. Lewis.

 Just wondering.


Frack Attack Invitation

Incoming invite -

Stop the Frack Attack is planning its next steps, and we want you to be there. We will be gathering in Dallas, TX from March 2nd-4th for a Frack Attack National Summit.

Hundreds will attend to share stories, become better spokespeople, learn about clean energy alternatives, celebrate victories, and strengthen this national movement. On March 4th, we will also rally in Austin to welcome the Texas state government back to work. And to remind them who they're supposed to work for -- the people, and not the oil and gas industry.

Sign up here:

And check out the draft schedule and workshop list here.

Hope to see you there!

P.S. You may be asking yourself, why Texas? Texas is where modern (horizontal) fracking was first widely used, with hundreds of communities impacted. As you fly into the Dallas/Forth Worth airport there are well pads as far as the eye can see, and once you land you are greeted by a compressor station right outside the airport. This is fracking at its worst, and it is home to many of the oil and gas companies destroying our communities around the country.

Friday, February 1, 2013

Worst CEO title

We received this email with some interesting information and a link.  Check them both out.

We bet you'll never guess WHO made the list.  Here's just one more reason WHY.

Did you sign a gas lease?  Did the Fort Worth City Council tell you this could happen if you signed?  (Obviously CHK or the landman wouldn't tell you).  I quote from near the bottom of the appended article:

What really caught me eye, however, was the fact that contractors who aren’t being paid by Chesapeake are now placing liens on the properties of landowners who leased their oil and gas rights.

The City Council was supposed to do due diligence on the part of the people before getting into bed with the drillers? Did they? NO!!!

We hear the "terminated" CEO was given millions to go away.  Tough break.

What's the "goal", again?

According to the Azle news - "More recreation opportunities goal of Tarrant Regional Water District"

To hell with water supply and flood control.  They just want to build stuff on other people's land. 

What's it going to cost YOU?