Here’s The Video of My Fox 4 Discussion on Gun Rights

Texas Could Soon Allow Guns at Work:

I’ll Be on Fox 4 Tonight at 9 p.m.

Not doing a perp walk or being ambushed by a reporter. I’ll be discussing a gun rights bill currently under debate in Austin.EvilAssaultWeapon

Check it out if you can. It’s going to be sometime in the 9 p.m. broadcast.

(Question: Bow tie or no? I wear a bow tie now. Bow ties are cool.)

Truth Comes Out in…Mother Jones?

Weird that this was the first media outlet to get it right.

At 2:00 a.m. on Saturday—about eight hours before he allegedly killed six people and wounded 14, including Rep. Gabrielle Giffords (D-Ariz.), in Tucson—Jared Lee Loughner phoned an old and close friend with whom he had gone to high school and college. The friend, Bryce Tierney, was up late watching TV, but he didn’t answer the call. When he later checked his voice mail, he heard a simple message from Loughner: “Hey man, it’s Jared. Me and you had good times. Peace out. Later.”

That was it. But later in the day, when Tierney first heard about the Tucson massacre, he had a sickening feeling: “They hadn’t released the name, but I said, ‘Holy shit, I think it’s Jared that did it.’” Tierney tells Mother Jones in an exclusive interview that Loughner held a years-long grudge against Giffords and had repeatedly derided her as a “fake.” Loughner’s animus toward Giffords intensified after he attended one of her campaign events and she did not, in his view, sufficiently answer a question he had posed, Tierney says. He also describes Loughner as being obsessed with “lucid dreaming”—that is, the idea that conscious dreams are an alternative reality that a person can inhabit and control—and says Loughner became “more interested in this world than our reality.” Tierney adds, “I saw his dream journal once. That’s the golden piece of evidence. You want to know what goes on in Jared Loughner’s mind, there’s a dream journal that will tell you everything.”

Full story on their site. And everyone using this incident to push their political points can suck it.

Star Children’s Charity Responds To My Article in D Magazine

Cover_bigMy boss man over at D Magazine has posted a response we got from Star Children’s Charity to my story in the January issue of D.

As Tim notes, the money graph in my story is this.

A look at Star’s most recent IRS Form 990 provides insight. It shows that in 2008 Star brought in $979,081 in donations and grants. It spent $522,554 on administrative costs and fundraising events. So the organization spent 53 cents for every dollar it raised, quite a high figure. The national average is about 20 cents. That year, Star doled out just $367,764 to its partner charities. 2009 was worse. Star doled out only $294,000, and it spent $1.57 for every dollar it raised.

Here’s what they sent both Tim and me.

Your recent article negatively portraying Star Children’s Charity is a disappointment to our Board of Directors, members, sponsors, beneficiaries and so many others in Collin County whose goal it is to make life better for the children of our community.

The accusation that Star is one of the reasons that Crossroads Family Services was folded into Boys and Girls Club is one of several egregious misstatements. The article also infers that Star has not distributed funds to Crossroads. The fact is that we have distributed a total of $661,000 to our beneficiaries including Crossroads.

Star is a well-run volunteer organization led by business owners and leaders, corporate executives and community philanthropists. The cumulative Management and General Expense for our organization is 10% compared to an acceptable industry average of 12% to 20%. Star also compares favorably to the national non-profit benchmarks for the cost to raise a dollar with our expenses for fundraisers between 5 cents to 57 cents for each dollar raised.

But the most disrespectful part of your article was in demeaning the beneficiary agencies. These institutions are known for their stewardship and their integrity and we are grateful to be a part of their important missions for children. We invite your readers to visit our website, to see for themselves that we are a well managed organization dedicated to providing funding and leadership to important community organizations.


Michelle Brennan Hall, Chairman, Board of Directors
Michael Urtso, Treasurer, Board of Directors
Ronelle Ianace, Executive Director

Submitted and mirrored from here without comment. You decide.

Me Out There, or I Didn’t Know AOL Was Still Around

Yes, they are still around, and I’m occasionally writing for them. Simple stuff like “Best Places for a Man Date” or “Best Hot Dogs.” (articles unrelated) Basically, it’s stuff like this here.

Anyway, it’s on CitysBest and if you have any ideas for best of lists in the Dallas area — Best Rainy Saturday Options, Best Yoga Studios, Best Cheap Eats, Best Whatever The Hell — please drop me an email and I’ll pitch it to my editor there.

NYT: All the News Unfit for Informed Readers

In one story we see everything wrong with the sheltered, uninformed readership of the New York Times.


And in one paragraph within that one story, we see what lies at the heart of everything wrong with the New York Times.

But one day it occurred to me: how would they know? All of these buzzy social networking sites like Facebook and Twitter sort of crept up on us. The government never mailed fliers to every household explaining what it’s all about.

Emphasis mine. As if I really needed to add that.

I mean, just, wow.

Econ 101 Epic Fail

The New York Times has an illustrious history of employing some of the worst columnists ever to put fingers to keyboard. Frank Rich, Tom Friedman, ad nauseum. With every new column they reach new heights of cluelessness. These columnists serve to protect the readership of the New York Times from the real world, and provide talking points for people with little intelligence and less imagination.

Bob Herbert is only remarkable because he’s so forgettable. Everything he writes is mundane, shallow, paint-by-numbers liberalism. He’s the left wing, print version of the Fox & Friends morning hosts.

But today, with a straight face, Herbert serves up a most classic example of how the left is wholly ignorant of economics.

The collapse of the economy in the Great Recession gave us the starkest, most painful evidence imaginable of the failure of laissez-faire economics and the destructive force of the alliance of big business and government against the interests of ordinary Americans.

Full column here.

Bob, it’s not laissez-faire economics if government works in alliance with business. The two things are mutually exclusive.

Um, No, Not Really, Mr. Mayor

Look, let me say first I love downtown Dallas as much as anyone else. I live in the DFW because I love the DFW*.

And then today I read this little platitude from Mayor Leppert.

You all have understood, that so goes downtown, so goes Dallas, and so goes North Texas.

Um, not really. In fact, hard statistics for the past 30 years show otherwise. Despite decades of valiant efforts, downtown Dallas consistently has the worst rate of occupancy for both commercial and residential real estate.

This has been true consistently despite both booms and busts everywhere else in the DFW area. During several periods of massive population, retail, spending and business growth all over DFW, downtown Dallas has still just plodded along well behind the rest of the pack.

Downtown Dallas may be important to our hearts, but what happens to downtown Dallas has almost zero impact on the rest of the Dallas-Fort Worth economy. Downtown is not the core of Dallas-Fort Worth — it’s just one more submarket in a huge metropolitan area that has no center.

* (offer void in Garland)

In Print This Month: A Look at Bill McNutt

On your news stand or in your mailbox, the June issue of D Magazine with my feature on Bill McNutt, the alumnus arrested and now under the spotlight.

Here’s a teaser. Follow the link for the full story.


The details of Bill McNutt’s February arrest—at least the details that have been made public—don’t add up. The prominent SMU alumnus had been banned from campus since November 2008. A university official would later tell the Dallas Morning News that SMU had “heard reports of alleged questionable behavior that caused concern among some students.” McNutt had dinner parties at his house, and he invited students to them. Alcohol was available. So was a masseuse. Several people told the News that the dinners were “creepy,” and girls felt pressured to undress for a private massage in a mirrored back room.

But even if true, none of that was illegal. So why would the university ban a donor and the founding president of the Young Alumni Association from campus? And why, if he was banned, did McNutt continue to receive personal invitations to on-campus functions from members of the administration? The administration was saying one thing; SMU Police Chief Rick Shafer was saying another. He warned McNutt that he was “not welcome on the SMU campus for any reason whatsoever.”

Compelling Profile of Rand Paul in…Salon?

Yep. Surprising, isn’t it? Rand is the physician son of Ron Paul — the old Texas OB libertarian/Republican with some great ideas, uncompromising principles, and two failed presidential runs under his belt. Ron, sadly, is neither the kind who can carry national elections nor is free from the baggage of his past.

Rand, however, is on the rise and he has none of the ancient history problems his father did, but all of his father’s commitment to principle, and a uniting personality to boot.

How Rand Paul became the Tea Party’s Obama

His father’s libertarian army and Rush Limbaugh’s “Dittoheads” aren’t natural allies. But Rand Paul has united them

Rand Paul’s success can be understood in the genealogy of the Tea Party movement. Its viral and decentralized traits, the intellectual foundations of its libertarianism, and its fundraising tactics all come from Ron Paul’s presidential campaign.

The first Tea Party event of the Obama era was arguably a Ron Paul “money bomb” fundraiser; and the story of that event is the primal example of how the medium of the Internet and the power of American mythology have combined to unify a movement of militant individualists.md_horiz


The political genius of Paul is his ability to cultivate a narrative that speaks to all strains of the Tea Party movement at once. After all, the libertarian purists who loved Ron Paul’s dissident truth-telling are not natural allies of the Limbaugh Dittoheads who dismissed him as an eccentric. He sings his libertarianism in the key of Glenn Beck – and he is writing a Republican playbook for the tea party era, turning grassroots energy into electoral power. Now, less than a week before the primary, polls show Paul’s lead over Grayson approaching 20 points. He also leads both of his potential Democratic challengers in the general election polling.

Read it all here.

More on Rand here.

h/t Hit n Run