blank'/> Liberally Lean From The Land Of Dairy Queen: 2/27/11 - 3/6/11

3.04.2011

Oh, my

 

The Father is going to have a hard time explaining this one to the Flock. Story.

But he does belt out a pretty good National Anthem at the end. 

I Love Crazy Stuff Like This

But it is an exception included in the bill that is drawing attention. Those who hire unauthorized immigrants would be in violation of the law -- unless they are hiring a maid, a lawn caretaker or another houseworker. More . . . 


It doesn't even need a funny comment to make it funny. 

Verdict: Not Guilty


Being a criminal defense lawyer is a tough job. There aren't many times you get simply enjoy a moment, but I had one this morning.

The facts of that case weren't great for the State, but they'd rather try it than dismiss it or reduce the charge. Can't blame them for that.They even made a reasonable DWI plea bargain offer before trial, but my client wouldn't accept it because he said he wasn't guilty. Can't blame him for that.

And a shout out to 5:41 PM. Can't blame me for that.

Edit: Ok, I might have been a little giddy and texted the wife, "I had not guilties shooting out of my eyes. Boom. Winning. Next case."

A funny moment happened after the trial as I was sitting in the courtroom by myself (I always do that). An older gentleman came in and said he had some time and was just looking around the courthouse. I pointed out a couple of things (like how all the woodwork was done by hand by an inmate), and then he said, "Let me give you my card in case you ever need me." I read it and smiled and he left the courtroom laughing.
But does "AB5QU" have any significance?

Random Friday Morning Thoughts



  • Trials are exhausting. Mine raps wraps up this morning with closing arguments.
  • At least one blog reader was on the jury panel yesterday. He didn't make it to the final jury, but he emailed me last night with some kind words.
  • There was an article in a legal journal the other day that lawyers should use Facebook to do research on potential jurors. That's a great idea except most Facebook profiles are private and your typical Wise County panel isn't the best demographic for being Facebook users.
  • But yesterday, while the State was conducting voir dire, I checked out one young guy on the panel with Facebook. I'll be dang, I had a hit and was able to find out some important information about him. I ended up cutting him from the panel.
  • The murder of the pastor at Northpointe Baptist Church in Arlington is shocking. Beaten to death in the church. No matter how strong your faith, that would have to rock it.
  • Fox 4 reported this morning that charges against a Midlothian City Councilman for Indececncy With A Child had been dismissed because the victim recanted. A quick Internet search revealed that the girl had recanted even before he was indicted. Another case of reckless prosecution.
  • I don't follow UFC, but based upon everyone talking about it, it has already exceeded boxing in popularity.
  • To all you folks that make comments about the Alvord ISD situation, a lot of those won't go through because they make some allegations which don't seem to be part of the public record.
  • The trees that have the white blooms on them will probably peak in about a week. That is, unless a freeze doesn't get them this weekend. I'd hate that. 
  • Mazda issues a recall for the weirdest reason ever: Spiders.
  • I'm still not sure about the iPad (even though the original's price is going to drop next week.) 
  • The deadline for the NFL owners and Players Union to hammer out an agreement was supposed to expire yesterday when a lockout was supposed to occur, but the two agree to extend it 24 hours. That's just for show. They are miles apart and the extension is just a PR ploy to make you believe they are really trying to resolve the issue.
  • Loved the video of the last second shot yesterday that I posted. Well, here's one of a kid almost getting killed while getting undercut. 
  • Unemployment dipped to 8.9% this morning. Let me say it again: If the economy turns around, and by all signs it is, Obama is a shoe-in for re-election. 





3.03.2011

Remember When I Told You I Was #2 On The Trial Docket



Well, as I was talking to the defense lawyer on the #1 case this morning who assured me that there was a 100% chance his case was going to trial, the State walked up and made him an offer that he couldn't refuse.

That makes me #1. That makes me in trial today. I knew that would happen (so at least I was ready.)

Jury selection is over. Testimony this afternoon.

Random Thursday Morning Thoughts



  • The Tarrant County elected DA tried a criminal case this week -- the first time the person holding that elected position had done so in 34 years. In that home invasion case, the defendant received 18 years. Not exactly the harshest sentence in the world. (But at least there was proof he committed the crime.)
  • We've got a war brewing with some neighbor kids who taunt the Family Pup (among other things.) Mrs. LL instituted a policy of confiscating any ball they accidentally kick in our yard. Tense.
  • The Sonogram Abortion Bill in the Texas Legislature was sent back to committee yesterday for technical reasons (the nature of which I don't understand.) I just want one conservative law maker to be honest and say, "We are trying to dissuade a woman from exercising what is, at least for now, a constitutional right." Now that I would respect.
  • Saw a Seinfeld episode last night where George was dogging a clown at a kid's party for not knowing who Bozo the Clown was. I suspect 75% of the population now falls within that category.
  • The killer of Robert F. Kennedy, Sirhan Sirhan, was denied parole yesterday. As a kid, the name of "Sirhan, Sirhan" was one that became embedded in my mind. It was just so, well, strange.
  • News broke last night about a 12 year old monster/boy in Colorado. Two dead parents and two severely injured siblings.
  • Today is the 20th anniversary of the beating of Rodney King. And we still just can't get along. 
  • Amercian Idol was on TV last night and, although I was ignoring it, I actually looked up and said, "That girls pretty good" when the chick named Lauren Turner performed.
  • I'm #2 on the jury trial docket this morning in the County Court at Law. I'm only going to trial if something happens to the #1 case. I'd rather be #1 because you have to prepare the same regardless.
  • On the way to work I saw a white car with the sole word of "Police" on the back of it, but it had "U.S. Government" tags. What agency do you suppose that was?
  • The girls in the house almost came to blows in the game room last night prompting Mrs. LL to separate them and (get this) had them right  write out separate statements as to what had happened. Edit: OK, deserved that dog pile.
  • I heard on the radio this morning that U.S. Agents on duty within Mexico aren't allowed to carry guns. I had no idea.
  • BYU showed us this week that the Mormons play by different rules. The school's basketball team is having the best season in history and was headed for a #1 seed. Then the team's second best player was dismissed from the team for violating the schools Code of Conduct. His offense? Premarital sex.
  • .7 seconds left in a basketball game and you've got to throw in the inbound pass. What do you do? Throw the ball to yourself off the back of a player and launch it for the win. (Credit: Bagofnothing.com) 





3.02.2011

TCU Vandalism At SMU's Ford Stadium


More photos.

Jarhead has been acting a little strange lately. I wonder if he has an alibi?

Wildfire Smoke or Just Clouds?


A faithful reader just sent me this pic from Rhome and mentioned smoke on the horizon from West Texas.  I appreciate the heck out of him (he sends me stuff all the time), but aren't those fires out?

(Thanks, Will.)

Liberal Supreme Court Loves Westboro Baptist Church



I jest. I told you this was coming.

The protesters complied with a newly enacted law by staying over 300 feet away from the funeral. And the father of the dead soldier who sued the church (and won $5 million) never saw or heard the protest.  The decision was a no-brainer.

As is often said, Freedom of Speech means protecting those who say things that we disagree with.

175th Anniversary of the Birth Of The Republic Of Texas


Quick questions:
1. How long was Texas a nation?
2. How many different presidents did it have?
3. Where was its final capitol location?
4. What university received its charter during the nation's brief life?
5. A 175th anniversary is called what?
6. What did the first president do that many considered treasonous?

--------------------
Answers below



1. 10 years
2. 4 (Although Sam Houston served two non-consecutive terms)
3. Houston
4. Baylor
5. Terquasquicentennial
6. After the Battle of San Jacinto, he (David G. Burnet)  negotiated a treaty allowing Santa Anna to return safely to Mexico in exchange for all Mexican troops withdrawing below the Rio Grande.

The Wikipedia page. There's very little I know about the brief Republic of Texas.

Random Wednesday Morning Thoughts


  • We've seen gas prices like this before, but I don't think we've ever seen them rise so much from one day to the next. They'll jump 10 to 15 cents a day. 
  • Conspiracy theory that even I don't believe: What if this Charlie Sheen bit is all a publicity stunt to promote Two and Half Men with the entire cast, crew and producers being in on it? If he were to rejoin the show, wouldn't its audience almost double simply out of curiosity's sake?
  • Then again, he's started a Twitter account last night and is already "retweeting" using the techi-understood format. That's a little suspect.
  • The guy that was shot by a cop in Fort Worth was referred to, without qualification, as a "drug dealer" last night on Fox 4. This morning they referred to him as an "alleged drug dealer".
  • Mrs. LL claims I talk in my sleep. She proved it last night when I awoke to catch myself saying, "But they are stealing the trampoline" over and over again. (She kept saying "What?" until I pulled out of my slumber.)
  • One of the silliest shows ever is The Bachelor.
  • Watched a 2nd Grade softball practice last night. I'm not sure that's softball that's being played amongst the chaos.
  • "Pope Benedict exonerates Jews for Jesus' death." I'm sure they're relieved. 
  • It's getting close to March Madness and last year this blog ran a Tournament Pick 'Em pool with the winner receiving a $150 gift certificate to Stagecoach Steakhouse in Bridgeport. If any merchant would think about donating a prize for first, second or third place, give me a shout. It's an advertising bargain for a four week tournament. (Last year's final standings.) 
  • Texas lawyers overwhelming rejected ethic reforms proposed by the State Bar last month -- mostly for complicated reasons dealing with fees, accounting, and trusts. But one proposed reform that got rejected in the landslide was one prohibiting sex with clients.  I'm surprised the media hasn't picked up on this because it would give rise to some great headlines. 
  • Cute: Baby laughing at paper ripping
  • That Frank Luntz guy on Fox News (who apparently has free reign to pimp his new book 24/7), comes across as a snake oil salesman to me. 
  • DPS has advised college students to avoid Mexico for Spring Break. I understand warnings for border towns such as Juarez, but this warning includes all of Mexico. Really? DPS says not to go to Cancun or Cabo San Lucas? I guess the government does promote fear.
  • Just glanced through the job openings in the Messenger and saw a lot for Commercial Driver's with two years experience. Are those good driving jobs or a beating?
  • Sports Illustrated released a story today about the number of players with criminal records in college football. Looking at their chart for last year's pre-season Top 25, TCU and the Evil Empire have nothing to be ashamed of. 



3.01.2011

A Twofer



I watched the first part of this video which show a cheerleader who is either excited or having a seizure. I'm not sure. But it was worth a little chuckle.  I was about to quite watching (I didn't understand why I was just halfway through the video) but then I got some added gold: The two guys recording this thing with a cell phone keep hitting the rewind button on the TIVO. Without saying a word and doing nothing but laughing, those guys had me laughing out loud in my office at lunch.

Odd Story Of The Day


A Star-Telegram writer, who ofter writes about strip clubs, watched as his wife gave birth to their child in the parking lot of an Arlington strip club just before closing time.

Projected Impact Of Budget Cuts On Wise County ISDs


"The Center for Public Policy Priorities has been a nonpartisan, nonprofit policy institute committed to improving public policies to better the economic and social conditions of low- and moderate-income Texans." I think they are a legitimate group and they have released their projections regarding the current school funding crisis on a county by county basis. (I excerpted the Wise County section from their downloadable spreadsheet.) 

The loss of private sector jobs is interesting. That goes back to my post the other day about how "big government's" purchasing of goods and services keeps a lot of people employed in the private sector.

(Thanks, Kevin.)

I'm Out Of Pocket For An Hour


And TWU gets locked and unlocked? Man, news happens fast.

Actually, I was being interviewed by the Bridgeport Index about Liberally Lean for what will certainly be the interview of the year.  Except I wasn't asked about the purpose behind the Random Girls, so a Pulitzer might escape the author. (Who, by the way, has had a far more fascinating life than mine.)

Free Christina!!!!!

She was in the unfortunate position of allegedly being drunk last night as a passenger while her boyfriend was arrested for DWI.

It's really not that unusual for a passenger to be arrested for Pubic Intoxication in that situation. The fact that you are in a car doesn't mean you're not in public. (But I have seen some videos where the passengers initially refuse to get out of the car because "Once I do, you'll arrest me for PI!")

But Wise County law enforcement seems to be pretty understanding in these situations. More often than not, they'll give the passenger a chance to call someone to come pick them up. If they can't find someone, then they'll be arrested.

Edit: Christina's book-in info has her at 100 pounds.

Random Tuesday Morning Thoughts


  • Our garage door went on the blink in an odd way. I diagnosed the problem by discovering that the wires to one of the safety sensors had been pulled out. Worth mentioning? Heck yeah! I'm almost never able to solve problems like that and, if I do, it takes me five hours instead of 15 minutes. Winner.
  • Not to beat an (almost) dead horse, but Charlie Sheen on Piers Morgan last night was some of the most fascinating TV I've seen in a long time. Morgan actually asked him "are you on some type of controlled substance right now?"
  • Crazy/Funny moment was when Sheen was asked if he had "taken a lot of cocaine." Sheen: "Taken? I had to pay for it."
  • UT is doing the same thing in basketball as it did last year: Go to #1 in the nation and then fade down the stretch (they have lost 3 of 4). They end the season at Baylor on Saturday and ESPN's College Game Day will be in Waco. I hope someone shows up (Baylor will be on Spring Break.)
  • A Fort Worth officer shot and killed a man last night, and a Garland officer killed a man in his front yard over the weekend. Hide yo wife, hide yo kids . . .
  • Skier falls accidentally falls off a climb and films it. (:55 mark.)
  • Mrs. LL grinds her teeth at night. If it takes a mouth-guard, that has to stop. 
  • The Supreme Court bent over backwards yesterday to issue a a pro-police opinion in the area of the admissibility of out of court statements. How bad was it? Ultra Conservative Justice Scalia issued a dissent saying that the majority's characterization of the conduct of the police is "so transparently false that professing to believe it demeans this institution." (And with Obama appointee Justice Sotomayor writing for the majority, I feel like I'm in Bizarro Legal Land.)
  • Overhyped story from yesterday: A Texas group offering $500 scholarships to white men. (Buried in the story is that a potential recipient qualifies if he is 25 percent Caucasian or more.)
  • Jane Mansfield Russell died yesterday. I really just remember her from bra commercials. Edit: Now I'm not so sure who is who. 
  • Our carpets have been steam cleaned. Of all cleaning projects, that is by far my favorite. 
  • The Star-Telegram sold its office building last week and, the publisher says, they plan to move but they just don't know where yet. Am I the only one that has a bad feeling about this?
  • It's March 1st and I saw blooms on trees this morning. Fantastic. Let the Post-Christmas Depression end.






2.28.2011

If You Like A Person's Wheels Flying Off



Charlie Sheen did an interview with NBC this morning (he wants his salary raised from $2 million to $3 million per episode for Two and a Half Men) as well as one with ABC.

But based upon the way the Internets are blowing up, he's doing an interview right now with TMZ which is uncensored.  There has to be some gold coming our way. Edit: They've posted it. Edit #2: Compilation of best quotes here.

And, as a self-proclaimed TV critic, I think Two and a Half Men is funny, but not funny enough to record.

Viral Video Of The Day



A video camera catches the terrifying moment a driver in a black VW Golf rammed his car into a group of cyclists participating in a Critical Mass event in Porto Alegre, Brazil. No one was killed.

Incident is at about the 50 second mark.

I Want To See Lari Barager Do This



I guess it was a legitimate fight, but it wouldn't put it past someone to stage a fight/breakup like this to get a little publicity.

But if it were a real fight between a couple of stangers, I'd keep out of it. I've seen some those brawls on youtube, it can get nasty.

Pics From West Texas Wild Fires


The Amarillo Globe-News has some pretty good coverage. 68 homes destroyed. 110,000 acres burned.

Random Monday Morning Thoughts



  • I asked a couple of weeks ago if that young mother from Poolville was still missing. Channel 8 did an update over the weekend. 
  • I'm not sure what has gotten into Charlie Sheen over the last few days, but he's going on a scorched earth policy. But you have to like a quote like, "I'm on a drug. It's called Charlie Sheen."
  • Gov. Perry has blocked some media outlets from following him on Twitter. That's a silly move. (Anyone not "following" him can still view all his boring tweets. The only difference is that his tweets won't automatically show up on your timeline. -- How's that for techno talk?)  
  • But that's what KXAS Kim Fisher did to me a while back. I'm pretty sure her career stalled once she did that. 
  • I ran the Cowtown Half Marathon yesterday and never felt stronger or faster. And then I find out I ran six minutes slower than last year. I guess there's two reasons: It was a different course with different elevations and, perhaps -- just perhaps -- I'm getting older.
  • Wise County Commissioners attorney advisor Thomas Aaberg ran the full marathon at 3:13 which qualifies him for the Boston Marathon. (He had to come in at 3:15 or under.) 
  • One frightening sight were five runners who had surrounded and were aiding another runner who had collapsed. They had his shirt up, looking for a pulse, and he was completely limp. I thought he was dead. (But I haven't seen any news reports of even the collapse.)
  • That kind of made me think about my own heart as I reached mile twelve. 
  • If you look off to the West this morning, it looks like you can see the smoky haze from those incredible West Texas grass fires
  • And don't drop a match out there today, the whole Southwest Proper will go up in flames. 
  • I say it every year: The bang to hype ratio of the Academy Awards is completely out of whack. 
  • Harsh but funny tweet last night: "Could Kirk Douglas be the first actor to be a Presenter and 'In Memoriam' in the same year?!?!"
  • It's a small news item but I noticed the CVS is seeking a variance for its signs from the City of Decatur. I think it was about 10 or more years ago when the city passed a silly, multi-page sign ordinance and all they've done is grant variances time and time again. 
  • Dumb question: Are the four precinct lines for Wise County ever redrawn based upon population shifts? 
  • The Star-Telegram had an article yesterday about something I had never heard of: "The Slocum Massacre" wherein 8 to 20 blacks were killed near that Texas town in 1910. (But the comments will make you wonder if we've evolved at all.)