Well, This Makes Sense

Ok, the Republicans who control the House decided to shut down the government unless a budget was passed that defunds Obamacare. When that didn't pan out (which everyone predicted) they now want to spend taxpayer dollars to pay all of those government employees who haven't worked? So the public is deprived of services but at no tax savings?

Ronald Reagan is rolling over in his grave.


Above The Fold (Inspired by?)

Another Odd Houston Texans Cheerleaders Video Taking You Into The Weekend


A Kansas high school player  and a commit to Kansas University (with offers from four other schools) scored a touchdown last night basically untouched and then became "dizzy and lost functioning."

News comes today that he had a stroke.

And he has died.

I, Robot

The interwebs are buzzing thanks to a video of Boston Dynamics' newest machine, a large four-legged robot called WildCat. Developed with money from DARPA, the cat-like machine is a more production-grade development of an earlier research droid called Cheetah that could run at over 28 miles an hour. More.

Everyone Is Going Nuts

Oregon State Police Thursday released a dramatic video showing the gun battle that unfolded in August on Interstate 84 about 100 miles east of Portland, ending in the death of a Portland motorist. (More)

Random Friday Morning Thoughts

  • The reviews for the new movie Gravity are off the charts good. Insanely off the charts. 
  • Yeah, the lady who drove like a nutcase outside of the White House and the Capitol was dangerous behind the wheel but, once she wrecked out, did she really need to be gunned down? (And the cops are lucky they didn't kill the baby in the car.)
  • Look at this cop car damaged in the chase. It wasn't hit by anyone. The driver ran into a concrete barrier in plain view.  (You can see the bizarre event at the 3:00 mark of this video).
  • Wendy Davis declared her run for the Governor of Texas yesterday.  Even I don't think there's a chance in the world she can win. But, on election night, she'll provide concrete proof that Texas is getting closer to becoming a blue state. 
  • And check out the press release by the Greg Abbott campaign released seconds after her announcement: "Once again, Texas Democrats are attempting to conjure support for California-style candidates that try to sell Obama’s liberal agenda and go against what makes Texas great." California? Obama? It's like Bubba Politics 101.
  • Our microwave went out last night. What's next?
  • Sports: (1) The Longhorn game was wildly entertaining last night although the horribly played win hurt, and did not help, the chances of Mack Brown keeping his job. (2) Which controls: When the referee makes his decision or when he blows his whistle a second later? Before you answer, think about this - If a ref is watching the play clock and sees it hit 0.00, the ball is snapped a half second later, and the ref blows his whistle a half second after that, the delay of game penalty is going to be assessed, right? (3) I mention that because of the controversial call at the end of the UT game. It's possible that the ref decided it was forward progress, the ball gets stripped, and then he blows the whistle. (4) It was either Emily Jones and Gina Miller on The Hardline yesterday who said that former Baylor coach Guy Morriss was the most sexist coach she ever knew. He wouldn't even acknowledge her in a room even though he shook hands with other male media members. 
  • I don't know much about the Mark Cuban/SEC trial other than to know he was goofy enough to invest in a search engine called mamma.com. 
  • If I don't mention a Wise County criminal justice story it's probably because I represent the person. I call it the Blog Immunity Perk. 
  • I'm beginning to believe in the Breaking Bad finale theory that it was all a fantasy that begin in the stolen car. 
  • Yesterday the Tarrant County Judicial Board (which sounds like some kind of Star Chamber) fired the magistrate who they had suspended last week. But they won't say why. (Someone email me and tell me -- I've got to know people who know.) 
  • Remember the four people in Alabama who were mysteriously found dead in a car on a remote road? Turns out two were facing child pornography charges.
  • Davis Love III rode around at the President's Cup yesterday with a baby squirrel in his lap, gave it to Tiger's girlfriend, who put it on Tiger's back. Tiger not pleased. 


Twitter Exploded Over A UT Cheap Shot This Evening

As the defensive player looks to see the Longhorn cross the goal line in the middle of the field . . .


Edit: Pretty crazy video footage

Northeast School Bans Kids From Saying "Hump Day"

Fox - With over 15 million views, the Geico 'Hump Day' commercial is one of the most memorable commercials to date. But the catch phrase has gone too far, according to one middle school.

You've seen the commercials either on your TV or on YouTube: The Geico commercial with the talking camel excited about what it day it is (hint: it's hump day). Now, students at Vernon Center Middle School in Vernon, Connecticut are banned from saying it.

Brooke Lewis, a student at the school says it's common to hear it in the halls. 

"Everybody's walking around in the hallways and saying its hump day in that weird voice." More.

There is no way this story would have even remotely gotten my attention but for last night. Right around 9:00 p.m., both of the Kids in the House locked on to saying "Hump DAY!" and, although cute for a bit, it went on to the point of almost driving me crazy. They just echoed off one another as they gathered up their things to shut down for night. "Hump DAY!" said one in the kitchen. "Hump DAY!" replied one walking up the stairs.

So while I normally think schools are mini prisons these days with all their rules (good training for some of those hellions, by the way), I totally support this school banning that catch phrase.  I cannot imagine what it's like to have a krillion middle schoolers just beating you down with it all day.

Messenger Going All "50 Shades of Grey" On Us?

A faithful reader pointed this out.  There was a story earlier this week of a former teacher in the Midland area who got arrested in Decatur in an Inappropriate Relationship type of case while she was employed there.

This is how the local media in West Texas referred to one of the incidences:

And this is how the Wise County Messenger described the same event:

Hot Mic Pics Up Republican Strategy

Hey, there's nothing wrong with what they are doing here, we just never get to see it.

There's no question that both the Republicans and Democrats gather secretly and separately to map out their "talking points" and party line for upcoming media interviews. We just never get to see it.

Here the Republicans want to seize on the Democrats position of "we won't negotiate" in the midst of the federal government shutdown.  

From Mashable:

The 40-second video shows Rand Paul approaching Mitch McConnell, asking if he has a second to talk.

"I'm all wired up here," McConnell replies. Paul continues anyway.

"I just did CNN, and I just go over and over again, 'We're willing to compromise; we're willing to negotiate,'" he says in the video. "I don't think they [the Democrats] poll-tested 'We won't negotiate.' I think it's awful for them to say that over and over again."

McConnell responds: "Yeah, I do too, and I just came back from the two-hour meeting with them, and that was basically the same view privately as it was publicly."

"I think if we keep saying, 'We wanted to defund it. We fought for that, but now we're willing to compromise on this,' I think they can't - we're going to win," Paul says. "I know we don't want to be here, but we're going to win this, I think."

Random Thursday Morning Thoughts

  • I never read a Tom Clancy book, but I loved the movie Clear and Present Danger.
  • A jury is deliberating a consensual sex assault case between a 17 and a 13 year old in Collin County. It sounds like the defense is jury nullification -- and the jury is thinking about it. 
  • After learning he'll be paid for the rest of the year even if he quits, Randy Galloway will put his radio show out of it misery on Monday by retiring. He said, “It was either, ‘You can do three more months of radio, five days a week, three hours a day, or you don’t have to do radio, and you’ll still be paid by ESPN.’ So there really wasn’t a lot of decision to make.”  And you question whether he's been mailing in it? 
  • I'm almost through with my first bottle of testosterone treatment. Is it possible that it had more of a mental effect than a physical effect? 
  • I keep reading that if Speaker John Boehner put up for vote a resolution to fund the entire government that it would pass? If true, who is running the Republican Party up there?
  • "Texas High School Tried Not To Run Up The Score, Won 91-15 Anyway"
  • What a beating this year: We've replaced the refrigerator, an a/c unit, the Gangsta mobile's transmission, part of the Gangsta mobile's a/c (after running over a big hunk of metal), bought a flute, and now the dishwasher may be on its last legs.  And we've just reached October. It's always something. 
  • Someone sent me this Lewisville book-in photo and asked me if it was Random Thought girl worthy. Not sure about that. But the expression on her face makes you think she's being booked in for murder instead of speeding. 
  • D Magazine did a feature on the Kennedy Assassination Bus Tour yesterday. Mrs. LL and I had actually talked about doing that. 
  • In this space on 9/17: "Tomorrow, Lake Bridgeport should break the twenty foot low mark." The Bridgeport Index's front page on 9/26: "It's Official! Lake More Than 20' Low." 
  • I saw the video of "biker attack" in Manhattan on Monday morning but didn't post it because I was so confused by what happened at around the 50 second mark. I didn't know if the soon-to-be-beaten driver was fleeing because he feared for his life or if he just decided to plow through the bikers. 
  • Don't forget: The Update mentions that The 23rd Annual “Bare As You Dare” Cross Country 5K is on Saturday. (A cold front moves in on Friday evening.)


Anyone Ever Heard Of Silk Road?

The Feds are all giddy about shutting down a famous "deep" website called Silk Road which, according to Wikipedia, was the Amazon.com of illegal drugs.  And you didn't use conventional money, you paid for it with bitcoins which is a "virtual currency" -- something else that is hard to wrap your brain around.  (Buying dope online from a site that can't be detected by search engines and paying with a virtual currency is a far cry from the way I learned it was done on The Wire.)

A lot of stories about the raid give the impression that the existence of Silk Road was common knowledge. I had never heard of it in my life.

And the government seized $3.6 million in bitcoins. It may be virtual, but apparently the government can get its grubby hands on it.

Britney Has A New Music Video

In these divisive times of political disagreement, finger pointing and name calling, we can always rely upon the official Liberally Lean Gal to bring us all together. (Link.)

Fox 4: I Demand Coverage Of This!

Over the weekend I posted the crazy story of the Bridgeport man (fantastically named "Big Ed Beckley") bidding almost $1 million for the right to jump the Snake River Canyon on a motorcycle/rocket/something. (See Evil Knievel in the late 1970s.)  Since then, even ABC's national news has picked up the story, but I haven't heard a peep out of any of the metroplex news stations or newspapers. I don't even think the Messenger mentioned it. This is good shtick. Get on it.

(A faithful reader sent me this pic last night from the guy's home. Go big of go home.)

Government Shutdown Juxtaposition

In the midst of the federal government shutdown, I noticed this ironic sight in Decatur this morning as Main Street is being repaved. I have no idea the manpower it takes to do that, but I counted seventeen guys (designated by the red dots) involved in the project. And I might have missed a couple.

Hey, it's a lousy picture but I'm no Joe Duty.

Random Wednesday Morning Thoughts

  • Watched a little Fox News last night and it seemed like the theme was "blame the Democrats for refusing to negotiate about the shutdown".  Negotiate what? That Obamacare was legally passed by Congress and ruled constitutional? I understand the Republicans' frustration, but this is going to turn into a disaster for them. 
  • Some pointed out that I shouldn't be surprised by Fox's hire of every-now-and-then moderate George Will because they have people like Juan Williams and Alan Colmes already on the payroll. I'm surprised because they didn't hire someone to be "fair and balanced" who won't serve as a token whipping boy. The first time he sits across from Sean Hannity, I'll be locked in. 
  • The first time I ever smiled because of George Will was way back in the 1990s when he was on the Phil Donahue Show when Donahue was constantly interpreting him. Will interjected: "Please don't interrupt me in the middle of my sentences because I'm an expert on how they should end." Donahue could only smile and say, "You are all that they said you were George. You are all that they said you were."
  • Tarrant County DA Joe Shannon announced yesterday that he won't seek re-election but said that "internal polling indicated he would have won re-election."  Someone needs to pull his campaign information and see if he has spent a dime on "internal polling." I think not. 
  • Speaking of, you can find any Texas elected official or candidate's periodic campaign financial reports here
  • Household problem: Everyone else in the house has no trouble letting milk, lettuce, or any other perishable sit out on the counter for 30 minutes. I use stuff like that and immediately rush them back to the refrigerator as if they will decompose immediately. 
  • Sports: (1) Things are bad at UT when the teams' sideline reporter is forced to resign after being critical of the team. (2) Did anything get more of a yawn that the Dallas Mavericks' press day on Monday? (3) Baylor will trick up its uniforms for Saturday's game versus West Virginia -- and they are a shocking 27 point favorite. That makes me nervous. (4) I mentioned that legendary QB James Street died this week but I had forgotten that I had mentioned his legendary game against Arkansas in Random Thoughts back in July. That seems to happen a lot. I'll refer to some obscure event and then it'll be back in the news one day or another. 
  • Lot of reports that the last song played on Breaking Bad, Badfinger's Baby Blue, had downloads rise 9,000% since the episode ran. Brakes should be tapped. Hey, if a book sells one copy for the last year and then sells 9,000 copies, it's not making the New York Times bestseller list.
  • Something I can't believe I discovered on my own last weekend: The term "twerk" was used in Lil John's 2002 song Get Low. (Accidentally hit the KISS-FM button in the car.)
  • There was an odd story yesterday of WWII Vets moving barricades to get to the "closed" WWII Memorial which had been closed due to the government shut down. Nice story, no? Then I got slumped shoulders when I found out that Rep. Michelle Bachmann and Rep. Steve King were there so this was probably all a publicity stunt. "Bachmann and other lawmakers will be at the site 'today, tomorrow, the next day, however long it takes' to keep the memorial open, she told CNN." Good grief. 
  • Mrs. LL will go crazy and mow the lawn every now and then. Yay! And then, every single time, she leaves the lawnmower out. Boo!


Odd Hire

He's a conservative but not their kind of conservative. Not sure how that's going to work out.


(And in completely unrelated news, local TV sports gals Emily Jones and Gina Miller are leaving their gigs.)

GOP Negotiators Are At The Table To End Government Shutdown -- Probably Realizing The Have No Leverage

Greg Abbott Is Doing a 180 And Breaking Up With Eric Holder?

Rumor has it that Greg Abbott will announce that he is pulling Texas out of the lawsuit to stop the AA/US Airways merger. Although I thought it was weird he joined in with the federal government in the first place, I heard him on the Mark Davis Show say that there was evidence that the president of U.S. Airways was  caught with a "smoking gun" in their efforts to  "jack up fares and reduce competition". "They were very overt in their actions to try an eliminate competition . . . . We are a nation of laws. What we have here is a violation of antitrust laws . . . , " he said. And the only reason he joined the lawsuit was because he had "cold, hard evidence". (He later wrote an op ed piece saying essentially the same thing.)

But he's been taking a beating from The Right for not letting the "free market" decide whether the merger will ultimately be in the public's best interest.   If he backs out now, it is 100% a political decision in his quest to become governor. And he continues to be revealed as a fraud.

If the press conference is not about withdrawing from the lawsuit, uh, never mind.

Edit: Abbott and the airlines announced a "settlement" but make no mistake about it: That's a dismissal without any legitimate concessions. He had to find a way to safe face.

Some Good Old Fashioned Violence

I'm not a fan of fight videos but this one is crazy: Two guys get smashed over the head with beer bottles at the Cowboys game in San Diego last weekend.  (But the guy who keeps showing his bloody arm needs to realize he's not in critical condition.)

Edit: Oops. BagofNothing.com had this first, but it's funny that we both made comments about the Arm Guy.

Edit: From youtube comments: "I'm just glad that somebody finally filmed a fight video in HD, while holding the phone horizontally, and not shouting 'WORLDSTAR' every 4 seconds."

Random Tuesday Morning Thoughts

  • Well, this government shut down is embarrassing.
  • Hey, I get that the Republicans want to unilaterally defund Obamacare. But wasn't that health care law passed by both houses of Congress and signed by the President? It seems like the Republicans ought to go about this task by simply winning some elections.
  • I'm guessing the shutdown lasts about a week before the GOP backs down. And they will back down. 
  • That "one strike to win the World Series" in St. Louis seems like a long time ago for the Rangers.
  • I keep reading that home prices have jumped over 10% (or more) over the last year or so. Has any one in Wise County actually sold a home at a hefty profit to back that up?
  • How's that democracy in Iraq going? Violence killed nearly 1,000 in September which is the highest since, well, July.
  • I predicted Dallas ISD Superintendent Mike Miles wouldn't last the year. Well, I was wrong. For now. He survived a 5-3 vote last night. 
  • Is it crazy to self insure yourself for medical expenses? Mrs. LL and I spend almost $1,000 a month on a crappy policy with a $5,000 deductible. If I cancelled it and put $1,000 aside every month dedicated to medical expenses (and I've got the discipline to do it), the odds are certainly in my favor.  After a couple of years we'd have well over $22,000 (routine medical expenses estimated at $2,000) and if we then obtained insurance, we've got a heck of a windfall. (Yeah, I understand the Obamacare tax penalty but it's minimum at first.)
  • Historically it makes sense: My main health care costs over the last decade have been due to  injuries with a torn Achilles and a separated shoulder. Each cost about $5,000 -- the deductible amount -- insurance didn't help at all. Mrs. LL has had no issues other than a routine doctor visit from time to time. 
  • Then again, a heart attack, cancer, or critical injury would certainly make that self insurance plan seem like a horrible idea. (I guess this is where I hear Clint Eastwood's famous line from Dirty Harry.)
  • And I understand that: Medical insurance should be like home insurance. That home insurance should be for catastrophic events and not for replacing a broken window.  But, sheesh, the premiums are ridiculously high for catastrophic medical coverage. 
  • I guessed I just summarized the sorry state of health care in America.
No Newspaper Cover!
I normally get it from www.newseum.org
The site is down.
Government shut down related?


And Another (Midland)

She makes the cut because she's in the Wise County Jail.

(Thanks to the commentor.)

John Daly Just Casually Hitting A Golf Ball Off A Guy In A Parking Lot

They say it was in Nashville. I'm kind of curious where the ball landed.

President's Going All William Wallace On The GOP

"And dying in your beds, many years from now, would you be willin' to trade ALL the days, from this day to that, for one chance, just one chance, to come back here and tell our enemies that they may take our lives, but they'll never take... OUR [OBAMACARE]!"

A Fort Worth Cop Car Had A Bad Day


Hug It Out

Back story: WBNS sports anchor Dom Tiberi returned to the anchor desk at the Columbus, OH, CBS affiliate after his daughter’s death. He thanked viewers, friends and colleagues for their support. “It’s never going to be the same. A little piece of me died,” said Tiberi with support from his co-anchors on set. He later added, “We’re going to try to make a positive out of this and thanks for sticking with me.”

Tiberi’s daughter, Maria Elizabeth Tiberi died after her car crashed into the rear of a tractor-trailer the night of September 17.

That was the Ohio State team, by the way.  I'm stunned the guy kept it together. I'd be crying like a baby.

It's Tuba Carnage!!!

(Still trying to figure out which high school this was.)

Random Monday Morning Thoughts

  • From the Update/YouGottaBeKidding Department:  "Bridgeport Coal Miners Heritage Festival is 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Saturday on Halsell Street. Events include the Battle of the Badge Wise County law enforcement donut-eating contest."
  • Sports: (1) I predicted the Rangers would fade down the stretch but get the last wildcard slot -- I never dreamed they'd fade then rally down the stretch to, perhaps, get the last wildcard spot. (2) The news of Lane Kiffin being fired made me smile on Saturday morning. He made my list of most despised coaches last year. Even the Family Cat wasn't impressed. (3) It looked like a Cowboys home crowd in the background when Dez Bryant caught the first TD pass. (4) What are the odds Nelson Cruz - whose suspension has now ended - will be in the lineup tonight? (5) I've never seen the NFC East so pathetically bad. (6) Bridgeport is 0-5 and was down 51-0 at halftime on Friday? What's going on over there?  (7) Texas legendary QB James Street has died
  • Hey, Liberally Lean Critic, this morning Gordon Keith mentioned the Dallas-homeowner-shot-story and the Argyle-video-in-the-locker room story that I wrote about on Friday. Once again, obviously stealing. Right?
  • If the local media doesn't pick up the story of the Bridgeport man bidding almost $1 million to jump Snake River I'll be shocked. 
  • This government shut down will blow up in the Republicans' face, right? 
  • I've raved about how great weather forecasting has become but, man, that was a crazy screw up on Saturday. It was supposed to rain all evening and night (that's why they moved the Rangers' game) and it ended up to be nothing more than a midday brief storm. 
  • Mrs. LL cried during Breaking Bad last night. (And wasn't that show fantastic!) My favorite line came from Skinny Pete: “The whole thing felt kinda shady, like morality wise.”
  • Have any of the Obamacare critics even looked into the new health insurance exchanges that begin tomorrow? Dare I say it looks pretty good?
  • Ted Cruz on Meet The Press yesterday: "The best way to get health insurance is to get a job.”  Good lord. 
  • I've got two incredible talents: (1) The ability to tell you what time it is almost down to the exact minute, and (2) Being able to catch something before it hits the floor (like a glass) after I drop it. Maybe I can get a job at a carnival. 
  • There's no way I'm watching the new Robin Williams television comedy. I have the long held belief that he's the most overrated comic in the history of ever. But, as a dramatic actor (i.e. Good Will Hunting), he's pretty good.