Food Insecurity

The timing is jarring. Our Brazos Valley Food Bank is hosting its annual Feast of Caring fundraiser on August 7, 2019. The success of this event is crucial to the thousands of food-insecure people in our area. While the Food Bank works hard to make its fundraiser a success so it can fulfill its mission, […]

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Do Politicians Care What You Think?

The short answer to this question is an emphatic “No!” This was the finding of 2 professors, Joshua Kalla from Yale and Ethan Porter from George Washington University, who conducted a study to answer this question. They discuss their study in The New York Times article of 7/12/19, “Politicians Don’t Care What You Think.”  If […]

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Just When You Think it Can’t Get Worse

My wife and I recently returned from Minnesota where we attended a wedding. We took the opportunity to travel through Northern Minnesota from Duluth, along the shore of Lake Superior to Thunder Bay Canada, up to Ely, the gateway to the Boundary Waters Canoe Area, and over to Hebbing, the epicenter of iron mining and […]

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FAA Balloon Pilot Update

I recently wrote about the FAA’s failure to implement a law requiring commercial balloon pilots to obtain medical certificates verifying their fitness to fly passengers. Despite prodding from Representative Lloyd Doggett of Austin, the FAA has still not acted. Reprinted here is an update from Representative Doggett regarding his continuing efforts to force the FAA […]

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Mixed Signals

On June 7, 2019, the Houston Chronicle reported several stories about energy that left me wondering which way we are heading environmentally.  The front page story was about carbon dioxide removal technology (giant vacuum cleaners) which would be deployed around the world to filter out carbon dioxide.  The technology is hypothetical, unproven and, if it […]

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Speaking from the Grave

Image property of C-SPAN On June 7, 2019, The New York Times reported on an unusual voting rights case. The background facts are that a leading Republican voting strategist, Thomas Hofeller, died last August.  Hofeller was considered a mastermind of gerrymandering and other machinations that ensure that Republicans stay in control.  Hofeller was hired by […]

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Safety

I posted a blog a few months ago about the tragic balloon crash in Caldwell County that killed 15 people, including two who had deep roots in Brazos County.  A bill proposed by U. S. Representative Lloyd Doggett of Texas requiring commercial balloon pilots to have medical certificates passed with bipartisan support and became effective […]

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Medical Malpractice “REFORM” Failed Patients

Image by Fernando Zhiminaicela Medical malpractice law in Texas has endured many major changes through the years.  These changes have made holding healthcare providers responsible for harm much more difficult and extremely expensive.  The first attempt at so-called “reform” occurred in 1977 and the latest version of reform took effect in 2003.  In every instance, […]

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If You Don’t Like the Answer, Change the Question

On May 28, 2019, the New York Times reported on the latest efforts of the Trump Administration to discredit climate science and climate scientists. The article, “In Climate Fight, Trump Will Put Science On Trial,” by Coral Davenport and Mark Landler, is well worth reading.           The article details how Trump and his political advisors […]

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It’s the Law – Until it Isn’t

The U. S. Supreme Court has just overturned its own precedent in the case of Tax Board of California v Hyatt. The question presented in that case had to do with governmental immunity. The legal issue will not affect your life, but the way the Supreme Court arrived at its result could make an enormous […]

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A Dangerous Road

Some Democrats are saying that the disputes between Congress and Trump have caused a constitutional crisis. Republicans respond to the effect that if there is a crisis, it is caused by the Democrats who are overreaching for political gain. Regardless of your political persuasion and setting aside the question of motive, there is a looming […]

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IMMIGRATION: Fact or Fiction?

The overheated political rhetoric about immigration policy has exposed a fundamental fact: the general public and the vast majority of lawyers are ignorant of the law. This makes us vulnerable to all sorts of spurious claims made by politicians who willfully and knowingly use our ignorance and misunderstanding of the law against us.   The […]

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A Sleight of Hand

The Trump Administration (Office of Management & Budget) is proposing regulations which will change how inflation is calculated. You might say “so what,” but this change could profoundly affect the eligibility of millions of poor people for government programs such as Medicaid, food assistance, housing assistance and other social safety net programs.  This is because […]

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Driving Nails in the Coffin of Your Rights

On 4/24/19, the U. S. Supreme Court probably drove the last possible nail in the coffin of cases wherein an employer or, for that matter, any company enforces a contractual provision which states that disputes must be resolved by arbitration (rather than in a court of law) and prohibits participating in a class action case. […]

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The Census Citizenship Question Hurts Texas

On April 23, 2019, the U.S. Supreme Court heard oral arguments in the case of U.S. Department of Commerce v New York. The Supreme Court will have to decide whether the Trump Administration will be allowed to include a question concerning citizenship in the 2020 Census. The evidence before the Court proves conclusively that inclusion […]

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“Tell Them We Are Full” – No Room in the Inn

It is often hard to keep in mind that we live in two parallel universes. The first is the universe of reality. The second is the universe of politics. In the universe of reality, immigration policy is a real problem that needs to be rationally addressed and fixed. In the universe of politics, immigration policy […]

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The Effective Assistance of Counsel

Photo by verkeorg on Foter.com / CC BY-SA On April 9, 2019, the Houston Chronicle ran two interesting stories regarding the appeals of two Texas death penalty cases. In the first case, U.S. District Judge Lynn Hughes of Houston ruled that it was permissible for one of the defendant’s two lawyers to sleep during the […]

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The Price of False Promises and Angry Threats

My father used a lot of old sayings in an attempt to teach me at opportune moments. Those moments were almost always just before or just after I made a big mistake he knew I would regret. One of the sayings my father was fond of was: “Son, don’t let the wind of anger blow […]

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