Archive | August, 2010

France.

Their military finally prevailed.

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So much for those “family values” Republicans

Sign on the door of a state government facility in West Texas, seen last weekend:

Just sayin’.

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Headline of the day so far

Yeah, I’ve been there, but never this bad.

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Kudos to the Massachusetts State Legislature

At least they’re honest about it!

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Letters From Texas sports update

This has been your Letters From Texas sports update.

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I saw the Constitutional Scholars open for Lee Greenwood in Branson, Missouri

Last week, I heartlessly accused conservatives who represent themselves as defenders of the Constitution of only supporting the Constitution when it protects policies and values they champion. But too often, they ignore or oppose it when the document protects the other guy. Those people. Them.

Today is the quantification of that – turns out that in the current Congress, Republicans have 42 proposals to amend the Constitution.

This has been your “does our Constitution make my butt look fat?” moment, brought to you by Letters From Texas Worldwide Headquarters.

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The idiot of the day…

Is self-explanatory.

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Headline of the day so far

The Texas Legislature, unlike the Australian Parliament, will very likely never be well-hung, until after Democrats take the majority back.

Update: unfortunately the publication not only changed the headline, but also put it behind a pay wall, so you’ll just never know.

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Whose Constitution is it anyway?

It’s easy to be in favor of the U.S. Constitution when all you’re really doing is protecting yourself against those you fear want to take something from you.

But that’s just the easy part, and anybody can be a hero when it’s easy.

What about when somebody else wants to do something you vividly disagree with? What about situations in which you want to take something from them? What happens when that same document you claim to revere protects those you don’t like, don’t understand, don’t know, don’t agree with, or don’t feel safe around?

We need not look further than the effort to build a Mosque (which, turns out, isn’t even a Mosque) near Ground Zero in New York. The same people whose Christian faith would cause them, understandably, to fight to the death to ensure that their religion can be freely practiced in whatever way they see fit, are the ones who happen to be at the front of the line opposing another faith’s efforts to do the same. So much for the First Amendment guarantee of religious freedom under the United States Constitution. Suddenly it’s not at the forefront of your thinking when instead of protecting your own religious freedoms, it’s protecting somebody else’s.

I understand and empathize with those who say, “it shouldn’t be built.” But too often, what they’ve instead been saying is, “they shouldn’t be allowed to build it.” Your friendly neighborhood Constitution begs to differ.

Or perhaps we should focus on those who are deeply troubled by the existence of so-called “anchor babies,” those born in the U.S. of immigrant non-citizen parents. That these babies are U.S. citizens is without question, but the fact is, the people who stand in opposition to them are often the same ones who just flat-out don’t like Mexicans and want them all deported, their American children with them. So much for the Fourteenth Amendment guarantees of citizenship guaranteed under the United States Constitution. Suddenly, that Constitution doesn’t seem so precious when it’s protecting those you loathe.

Whose Constitution is it, anyway? Is the entire document just wrapping paper for your precious Second Amendment? Is it only important when its protecting you?

Here’s a thought: consider the possibility that you are not acting like a true American if you only believe the United States Constitution merely exists to protect you.

Consider the possibility that you do not share fundamental American values unless you also acknowledge that the Constitution of the United States is just as important when it’s protecting them. And you. And me. All Americans. Even the ones you don’t like.

And especially consider the strong possibility that those who have been calling themselves “patriots” lately, in their frequent efforts to ignore or deny Constitutional rights guaranteed to others, have inadvertently become the most unpatriotic of us all. After all, what is at the very foundation of American patriotism, if not the full support of the U.S. Constitution itself?

The Constitution is what it is, for better (when it’s protecting you), or for worse (when it’s protecting them). It is really getting tiresome when the very same people who wave that document in the air like a weapon every time it suits them turn around and ignore it when it becomes an inconvenience.

The U.S. Constitution is more shield than weapon, the most powerful shield ever created. It has enabled unprecedented societal stability, and it has protected us, often from ourselves or each other, for a very long time.

Don’t abandon it now. Like I said – if it was easy, anybody could be a hero.

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America continues to fall behind our allies

There’s an election coming up in Australia too. Here’s an ad for one of their political parties.

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Photo of the day so far

State Senator Leticia Van de Putte is visiting Turkey. Not the Thanksgiving gobbly kind, the country. Apparently they’ve installed The Interwebz there, because she emailed me this totally entertaining photo earlier today of a display she came across in a public bazaar in Istanbul.

Yes, I realize this isn’t a “Letter From Texas,” but rather a “photo from Istanbul,” but I’m not changing the name of the blog.

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I saw the Terrorist Babies open for Aerosmith in ’79

What isn’t a surprise: Texas is back in the national spotlight as the laughingstock again, because of people in the Republican leadership.

What is a surprise: it’s not Rick Perry or Leo Berman.

Anderson Cooper‘s got the knack for newsy stuff. Rafael Anchia is savvy enough to STFU and let the crazy ooze out of debate opponent Debbie Riddle. And a proud nation once again laughs its ass off at Texas Republicans.

It actually all started with whacked-out Republican Congressman Louie Gohmert, who has talked on the House floor about about how an unnamed retired FBI agent said that they’re looking at terrorist cells overseas who sneak preggo women into the U.S. to have their babies before returning home, thus making the children U.S. citizens. Then, after 20-30 years of indoctrination and terrorist-stuff training, these U.S. citizens return to the U.S. to kill us all deader than hell.

A horse’s ass, Debbie Riddle

Apparently Gohmert isn’t stupid, just nuts, so he declined Anderson Cooper’s invitation to appear on CNN to explain all this. Instead CNN found Texas State Representative Debbie Riddle, who would have already long been world famous for being a whackadoodle except that she has such stiff competition among others in the Texas Republican leadership. CNN rounded it out by also inviting Democratic State Representative Rafael Anchia, whose only necessary qualification for this particular TV appearance is that he not be completely insane.

Riddle, like Gohmert, also said that she’s has discussions with former FBI agents about terrorist babies, failing to mention the commonly-held view among new parents that all babies are terrorists, and already have advanced skills in the use of dirty bombs.

Under sharp questioning from Cooper, Riddle expressed surprise and dismay that a newsman would ask a lot of questions, and she declined to answer them. Meanwhile, Anchia, not being an idiot, merely smiled a lot and declined to interrupt Riddle as the crazy continued to ooze from her entire being.

Riddle never did disclose who fed her this ridiculousness, but the following night CNN had a former FBI director on the same program who said it was all nonsense.  Meanwhile, the folks over at the Texas Tribune issued an open records request requiring Riddle’s office to turn over any evidence whatsoever of this communication between Riddle and a former FBI agent. Surprise, surprise – no evidence exists.

Why do I explain this to you, the crap reading public, in such excruciating detail? Because there’s no way in hell you’re going to be able to watch the entire CNN interview without the uncontrollable desire to take an ice pick and gouge out your eyes and ears.

In the off chance I’m wrong about that, here’s the complete segment.

Update: apparently Gohmert decided to get him a piece of this afterall, he was on CNN last night, where Anderson Cooper got a big chunk of his ass too.
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Some call him “The Bailer”

I’m guessing others will soon be calling him “single.”

Meet this Astros fan who courageously moved out of the way of a foul ball at a Houston Astros game, instead letting the ball hit his girlfriend.

Come on dude, she deserved better than that! Who’d you think you were sitting next to, Debbie Riddle or something??!

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A moment of quiet, thoughtful reflection

On the issue of same-sex marriage, I know what I believe, and I’m completely comfortable with it. I still remember the first time I ever saw a bumper sticker in a parking lot that read “Focus on your own damn family!” and I was still grinning a solid hour later. That message conveys exactly how I feel.

I will never understand all the energy some people put into worrying about who somebody else is hanging out with.

That said, there are those with differing opinions. Every once in a while, someone comes to our attention who, despite holding different values, is incredibly articulate, amazingly logical, utterly convincing, and wholy thought provoking.

Frankly, in all fairness, Letters From Texas Worldwide Headquarters simply cannot in good conscience fail to lend such a person a venue from which to share his or her incredible insights on matters such as these, even on issues upon which we happen to disagree. After all, what is this humble blog, if not a place for a high-minded citizenry to exchange important ideas?

It is in this spirit of fair play that we respectfully invite you, the crap-reading public, to take a moment to reflect on the deep thoughts of this articulate voice of opposition to the judicial ruling declaring the California same sex marriage ban issue, Proposition 8, unconstitutional.

This moment of quiet reflection by the opposition has been respectfully brought to you by Letters From Texas. We now return you to your regularly-scheduled program.

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Headline of the day so far

I wonder what sort of thing the police expected to find, if not that?

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