Monday Roundup: Violence in South Dallas But Not Really South Dallas…

  • Two dead, three seriously wounded Saturday night and none of them — or all of them — or maybe some of them? — were in South Dallas. Except when they were in neighborhoods in South Dallas, in which case that’s not South Dallas. Or something like that. Ask Rawlins. Bring aspirin.
  • You know what will make downtown Dallas great? Besides that the 12 weekends a year when we’ll have drunken conventions at the People’s Hotel? Pep rallies. Yes, pep rallies. (Seriously? I’m beginning to think that even his editors don’t read what he turns in.)
  • And speaking of, Robert Guest asks all the right questions (that a newspaper reporter failed to) about Flower Mound polizie police apparently busting down the door of a residence not based on probable cause, but rather the refusal of residence to let them in.
  • You can look at someone’s hand an know if they’re gay. Seriously.

Thursday Roundup: See how I’m not punching him?

  • What’s that word? Oh yeah, irony. The first school named in this story of how high school seniors are so indoctrinated to fear the humorless Powers That Be that they don’t play senior pranks anymore is Liberty High School in Frisco. Sorta surprised they didn’t quote the principal at Oceania High School.
  • And speaking of Oceania schools — DISD is ensuring equality in education by bringing every school down to the lowest common denominator. Viva égalité!
  • Something smells seriously fishy here. Who needs seven night vision scopes for hunting? Who needs one night vision scope for hunting anything but the most dangerous game? And who spends an average of $7,000 on a night vision scope in the first place? Even the most advanced ones don’t run that much.
  • You know, it’s stupid enough that anyone would deny that the email has a racist tinge – referring to the White House as the black house. But I’m even more offended at the stupidity of thinking a proposed state bill in Austin originated with Mr. Obama, and with the idea of a $50 tax on gun purchases.

Friday Roundup: Good Lord, I’m 40

  • Want another reason to legalize gambling, including poker houses. Here you go. Bring them out of the dark and you won’t have predators like James McDaniel poisoning the atmosphere and OD’ing coeds.
  • Why on earth wouldn’t you want to entrust your child’s future to DISD, given moves like this one?

Daytime Curfew: Just Say No

img_4298_2Love the Kunkle. So what I’m about to say is with all due respect to the points he articulated for Unfair Park.

Dallas doesn’t need a daytime curfew for juveniles. And there are five reasons.

1) It. Is. Not. Necessary. Police already have the power to stop, detain, and deliver truants back to schools. We don’t need to criminalize truancy, and we don’t need to stack $500 fines that will fall disproportionately on the people who can’t afford them, just adding to their cycle of poverty and being in dutch with the law. (Yeah, I know, I’m not supposed to care much about the poor — smell like old milk and they don’t buy ads — but I certainly do care when it’s government piling on them.)

2) We are given a list of “defenses” to the fine — With permission of the student’s school subject to confirmation, medical excuse subject to confirmation, etc. Key words there are “subject to confirmation.” Meaning the police will be able to detain the kid (or an adult who looks young), issue the citation, and put people through the headache of the legal process even when they shouldn’t be. As a negative bonus, this sends a great message to kids — you are not a citizen, but a subject. Which brings me to…

3) Children are not the property of the city of Dallas, the school district, Texas, or the United States. The first two full sentences I taught my daughter were “I am not the property of the state. My life is my own.” (Ask my wife; I ain’t kidding you.) Kids are wards of their parents, in whose trust their rights are placed until they are of legal age.

4) This is a feel-good, do-nothing-but-harass-people initiative backed by clueless elected officials who want to look like they’re doing something.

5) Show of hands — who thinks this $500 fine part has nothing to do with the city’s $100 million budget deficit? Anyone? Anyone?

Tuesday Roundup: And Now, Here’s Ollie Williams…

  • If you ever had doubts that local schools should be run strictly by locals, look no further than the federal Title 1 rules. It appears the one bright spot in DISD — its magnet schools — because are safe from cuts but how smart is it that the district can’t, by federal fiat, pump extra funds into schools that need it beyond a 10 percent median?
  • This news will be heartening to more than a few in my network.
  • The Dallas City Council will be voting on its latest revenue enhancer — a daytime curfew for juveniles — which has the added benefit of making kids feel like they only have liberties at the sufferance of their civil masters. Want reasons why it’s a bad idea? Look no further than your friendly neighborhood blog.

Tuesday Roundup: Star Trek is Back

  • …And my review will be up tomorrow.
  • New anti-hotel ad is good but there’s overreach where they quote Councilman Jerry Allen who said, “That’s an element of risk that’s out there. … Of course, by that time, I’ll be off council. So I cannot be held accountable.”
  • William McKenzie raises a lot of good points about the state of public schools in Texas, but the bottom line for me seems to be we should just return full control of schools to local school boards and let what happens, happen.

Wednesday Roundup: All Kinds of Ugly

“Figures like that only fuel the public’s disdain of oil companies.” No, Ed. Uniformed, pandering, envy-based comments like yours fuel stupid people’s disdain for oil companies. Exxon Mobil has posted record shattering profits for itself and earned solid outstanding profits for its shareholder, while continuing to hire and pay employees far above the industry median at all levels, so if the board thinks Rex Tillerson deserves $22.4 million in compensation, it’s none of your business, Ed Housewright.

What’s an antonym for gratitude?

The Plano Independent School District is putting the kibbosh on the asinine idea of adopting the Dallas ISD’s “no homework, no problem” and “hey, it’s just cheating” policies. For now.

Regarding the APB (fatwa?) Michael Davis put out on the Dallas Observer‘s hard-working reporter Sam Merten yesterday for his extensive, intensive coverage of Mayor Tom Leppert politicking from the pulpit of black churches — in probable violation of IRS tax exemption standards — as the vote on the People’s Hotel gets closer, Jim Schutze asks a pointed question: “Mike Davis might be able to answer this: will the Vote Yes people be required to pay the same amount of money that the Vote No’ers had to pay the preachers in order to speak at their churches?”

Tuesday Roundup: BATFE Burns Another Dealer, Seig Health!, Urban Core Meltdown & More

The Texas Observer has a definitely-worth-your-time investigation into the BATFE’s railroading of a Plano gun shop owner. Now, for those who don’t know, the BATFE is the bottom run of federal law enforcement, where the worst of the dregs wash up. This is an agency that goes after gun dealers for “not keeping proper records of gun sales” because — and I do not exaggerate — sometimes buyers will write the abbreviation for a state rather than the full state name on forms. It appears as though now the BATFE has helped put a man in jail for an arson he didn’t commit. Good stuff. (Hat tip: Unfair Park.)

First they come for smokers, now they’re coming for transfats. Don’t say I didn’t warn you.

And Mr. Obama’s wise decisions touch down like a tornado in Fort Worth.

I don’t know what it will take for Dallas to reverse this trend — I have my doubts a park along the Trinity (with or without tollroad) and a half a billion empty convention center hotel will help — but it doesn’t auger well for Big D in the long run.

And now: The 5 Most Popular Safety Laws That Don’t Work

Friday Roundup: DWI Checkpoints, Good Cop, Hotel Vote On & More

Robert Guest uses the video of a DWI stop from a pretty infamous ex-Dallas cop to show why the new bills authorizing DWI roadblocks — despite their promises of protections that require reasonable suspicion — are no protection at all, given that some cops will outright lie in the field, lie under oath, and lie as often as they accuse suspects of lying. I’m sorry, but it’s true. In the video, the officer admits he smells no alcohol but would administer a field sobriety test anyway. Then the officer testified in court, under oath, that he did smell alcohol. As Robert notes, jurors automatically give cops the benefit of the doubt and trust them, versus those accused of drunk driving. And most cops are smart enough not to admit they don’t have reasonable suspicion or probable cause on video.

After a couple of weeks of bad news, do you want some good news about the Dallas Police Department? Here you go.

Who wins here? Dallas voters. Regardless of the outcome, they will get to decide whether the city of Dallas should go into the hotel business. (Somewhere, Philip Jones and Ron Natinsky are holding each other, alternately cursing and weeping. The power of this blog surprises even me.)

You know, with as many fat little kids as you see waddling around and just using common sense that says kids shouldn’t be cooped up in a school house eight hours a day — why the heck do we have to make it a state law to have recess? But I’m glad someone’s pushing it. Drop the homework for kids below high school level, abolish TAKS, and let the kids play.

Creepy guy at Woodrow Wilson alert. Bonus: He’s a teacher.

Just for fun, watch this:

Tuesday Roundup: Another Weird Day in North Texas

Look, I’m not saying that libertarians have the wrong message, but sometimes we’re our own worst enemies. The one libertarian in the U.S. House, Congressman Ron Paul, R-TX, doesn’t do the cause any favors in his cameo in the upcoming Sasha Baron Cohen movie. Oy vey.

As Dallas City Councilmember Angela Hunt already knows, no good deed goes unpunished.

“Man Accidentally Creates Toxic Gas.” And no, it wasn’t Tim Rogers this time.

I’ve thought for years that the best move for the Dallas Independent School District would be to break it up into five or six smaller ISDs. Now the Lege is considering doing just that.

“This isn’t Russia, Danny. Is this Russia?”

I have yet to understand why the Bill of Rights is void on college campuses.