It's Friday. Let's Get Out Of Here.

 Get me this owl!
 I pray that beaver sneaks into his house tonight and wakes him up.
 They forgot to build stairs in that place?
This almost happened on the Decatur courthouse square yesterday during lunch. Really.
 Nice job, kid. But as President of ACME Insurance Company, I find you uninsurable in the future.

That reminds me. I've been feeling more and more stiff joint pain lately.

Random Friday Morning Thoughts

  • I missed the story yesterday morning that we had another parking lot shooting at a Fort Worth strip club that left one dead and three injured. That will hurt Corset's Cabaret on Yelp.
  • There are lots of buy outs going on at the Austin American Statesman and even the Publisher and Editor announced they were leaving this week. I think a former Messenger reporter took a buyout as well. 
  • All of Trump's denials on Twitter can pretty much be interpreted as admissions at this point. (And he has not had a single one this morning. Someone better check on him.)
  • The Aggies laid Reveille VIII to rest outside of Kyle Field last night (the dog died back in June). They forgot to make the grave big enough and had to stop down to dig it a little wider. 
  • I'm still having trouble believing the Rockwall County Republican Party did this. And just who in that lilly white town are they trying to appeal to?
  • It. Will. Never. End.
  • The first kickoff aired by ESPN for the college football season saw this happen last night:
  • I noted a few weeks back that Diamond Hill Jarvis had a chance to break the state losing streak record since they were sitting at 77 straight loses. It all came to an end last night as they beat Conrad, 40-12. (Conrad is a high school around Greenville Avenue and Walnut Hill in Dallas).
  • Stuff like this drive me crazy. The judges of Texas' two highest courts (Texas Supreme Court and Texas Court of Criminal Appeals) met before a legislative panel about bail reform yesterday. The Texas Supreme Court has no criminal jurisdiction and the judges on it wouldn't know how a bail bond works, legally or practically, if it hit them in the face.
  • Texas bail bond reform is basically about helping the poor. That judge from the Texas Supreme Court cares so much about the poor  that when he was hit with ethics charges over a decade ago he wanted the taxpayers to be responsible for $340,000 in his legal fees to defend himself. 
  • This was in 1956 (!!!): Students in Mansfield opposed integration by hanging a black man in effigy over the school doors.
  • I didn't know that even Fox News apologized for the Florida Republican nominee for governor's comments about "monkey this up."
  • The man who has blown $77 million in taxpayer money by wasting it at his resorts for 147 weekend golf outings has announced that almost two million federal employees will not get a scheduled 2.1% raise next year. 
    "No money for you!!!"
  • I got my new Texas Bar Journal magazine yesterday, and it included an article on "Pattern Recognition: An epiphany leads a Dallas attorney to her love of quilting."  It also included an article on networking a room suggesting, "With your arm extended and a smile on your face, walk up to an existing group of people and say, "Hi, I just wanted to come over and meet you all! I'm ______." Worst publication in America. (And if I ever get involved in "networking" I'll fill in that blank with "Beaten Down.")


Random Thursday Morning Thoughts

  • The new hot Fox 4 employee is quickly moving up the ranks. I'm guessing Lauren Przybyl will continue from 6:00 a.m. to 9:00 a.m. 
  • An elderly Texas pastor received probation in Tarrant County for child porn. But I thought we were past the days of ridiculous signs: "James Rankin, 79, also was ordered by Judge Mollee B. Westfall to post a sign at his Hurst home that says, 'A person on probation for a child sex offense lives here.'” Why not just reject the plea bargain if you think he is such a threat?
  • There was a lot that went on during that "Evangelical Dinner" the other night. And here's a reminder that churches are tax exempt: 
  • A linebacker for the Cleveland Browns has been charged with . . . wait for it . . . Insider Trading. That's a first. And it might give rise to an interesting episode of Hard Knocks next week. (He was immediately cut.)
  • The Balch Springs police officer received 15 years in prison last evening -- he'll have to serve at least half before becoming eligible for parole. A Notice of Appeal has been file, but I'd think long and hard about that. He could have received up to 99 years/Life, and I'm not feeling real good about a Not Guilty or Probation if he were to get a second chance. 
  • Sarah Palin is not invited to John McCain's funeral. That "rising star" flamed out very dramatically.
  • The Astrodome got off to a rough start:
  • The McLennan County D.A.'s office has been a mess ever since the Twin Peaks Biker Fiasco, and they aren't slowing down. The office cut a probation deal in a sexual assault case with a expelled Baylor frat boy without telling the alleged victim. She read about it in the paper. A firestorm has now broken out. (There's a Fort Worth lawyer involved and the victim has retained a blast from the past: Vic Feazell.)
  • He attacked one-half of the team that brought down Nixon in Watergate? You kidding me? 
  • The DPS Regional Director for District 1 (which includes Wise County) is open
  • The Republican nominee for governor of Florida has already stepped in it. And he managed to throw in that his opponent was "articulate" before he fired off the "monkey" comment. (I heard more about this on right wing radio than I did the main stream media.)
  • The Texas Republicans need to get a new social media person. Yesterday they took a shot at Beto for a very old DWI arrest that he never tried to hide. I'm sure this attack will appeal to all Texans. It certainly crushed George W's political career.  
  • An Uber driver (and off duty cop) shot and killed a guy who was approaching him aggressively on the roadway after stopping. It's probably a justifiable shooting but the local Sheriff sure had a bold statement: ""Here's a message for the hotheads of the community: don't do that stuff," Judd said. "Good people carry guns. And they will shoot you a lot. Graveyard dead. Leave people alone. It's a new day in the state of Florida and the United States."


Random Wednesday Morning Thoughts

  • The political career of Sheriff Joe is over as he finishes a distant third in a three person race for the Republican nominee for November's Senate election.
  • When I'm wrong, I'm wrong: I didn't think the Balch Springs officer would be convicted of murder but he was. Now the jury is deciding punishment and they won't have probation as an option.  (The jury would have been informed of that in voir dire if everyone was doing their jobs, so a compromise verdict of "Let's convict him of murder but give him probation later" didn't happen.)
  • I wasn't the only one wrong. Check out this headline from Fox 4 shortly after the shooting last year: 
  • Our Governor immediately weighed in on the verdict and played the Race Card.
  • Interesting thought: I think people who play video games are goofballs. I think people who play Chess are high-minded. That may not be fair at all. 
  • Fort Worth PD conducted a prostitution sting and arrested 30 saps. The streets are safe again!
  • In one of the weirdest marriages ever, Ken Starr will join the big time plaintiff's litigation group, The Lanier Law Firm. (That's the firm which has Christmas parties where Faith Hill, Miley Cyrus, Bon Jovi (and more!) have performed.) What an odd fit. Starr's as stuff suited as they come, has never tried a case, and knows absolutely nothing about Texas state civil law. That's the antithesis of good plaintiff's lawyers. (But Lanier has already had a bad year at times being involved in "unequivocally deceptive" conduct as noted by the Fifth Circuit.)
  • I've been told by a very reliable source that Walmart is having a Best Maid pickle shortage. I don't care, but my source is in a panic. Girl needs her pickles. Edit: A faithful reader pointed out this in depth article that points out being a supplier to Walmart can crush your profits. Bottom line: It ain't easy being a supplier.
  • I'm no constitutional scholar, but a court which gives preferential treatment to one group over another would seem to have some Equal Protection Clause issues.
  • UT coach Tom Herman, for some reason, won't just come out and say who will be calling the plays this fall.  He said this week that "we'll all be calling the plays." There is no way that's true. It's going to be one guy, and that one guy needs to embrace the public scrutiny.
  • Maybe Herman is distracted because Ohio State has announced that he was in a strip club with the guy who is the source of the school's current scandal. 
  • We are living in an endless loop. 
  • He's a true scholar of history.
    Wait a second. Didn't an "anonymous source" play a big role from inside our intelligence agencies one time?

  • Messenger: Above The Fold


Random Tuesday Morning Thoughts

  • Trump backed down on not flying the flags at the White House by finally relenting yesterday afternoon. At least it's good to know he can finally be shamed into doing the right thing even if it is against his nature.
    Trump ignoring questions about McCain yesterday. (Really)
  • The Wise County Courthouse flags were at half-staff after the commissioners' meeting yesterday morning. 
  • It's time for the legislature to do away with the points/surcharge system. You get a ticket, pay it, get surcharges, don't pay the surcharges, you get your license suspended, you get stopped on a suspended license, you pay that ticket and get an extra suspension and more surcharges and on and on it goes. Prosecutors hate it more than I do. 
  • I'd be awful at press conferences if I were a head coach because I'd eventually just go off on a reporter. 
  • Fox 4 Shaun Rabb accidentally quoted the defense lawyer in the Balch Springs officer case as using "lol" during a closing argument which caused a reader to become offended.
  • Reporters, understandably, misuse Opening/Closing and Statement/Argument. It works like this. At start of trial you have: (1) Opening statement by State (2) Defense opening statement. At the end of the trial you have: (1) State's opening argument, (2) Defense closing argument, (3) State's closing argument. 
  • After Nebraska named a starting QB, his backup decided to transfer the next day. It's an epidemic of "picking up my toys and going elsewhere."
  • I saw a lot of disgruntled clients with their lawyers in the courthouse yesterday. Obviously, I don't know the details of each case but most of the Defendant's seemed pretty cavalier. I didn't see a single lawyer say, in essence, "You call the shots but let me explain to you the horrible consequences of your strategy in the event you have misjudged your situation." I saw more of a "It's your life - I don't care" attitude.
  • I'm now fascinated by the ever changing background of the new Messenger "Update Live."

  • Mrs. LL is going to a Rangers game tonight. Cowboys on Sunday and Rangers on Tuesday? I'm worried about her mental health. What's next? Water-boarding date night on Thursday?
  • I'll let you guess who attended an "Evangelical Dinner" with Trump last night. (I'm still awaiting word of any lightning strikes.) Jeffress is so in love he'll even post this high quality picture.
                                                                                  "Get behind me, Satan."
                                                                                   Robert Jeffress (American, 1955-present)
                                                                                   2018. Digital. 12 MP, printed 2018. Gift from Twitter.
  • Stormy Daniels and her lawyer are in an upcoming issue of Vogue. (Photo by the famous Annie Leibovitz):
  • There was nothing more Idiocracy than on Saturday night when NBC interrupted its network to announce the death of McCain. When the "we now return to our regularly scheduled programming" was said, NBC cut to what was showing: Two men in dolphin heads. (Youtube clip here.)
  • A fake Warren Buffett account is giving life advice that everyone loves. It became famous last week with 10 things he thought were "cool" which were, indeed, cool. 
  • Trump is mad at Google this morning because the search results for him aren't positive. He wonders if it is "illegal" and whether it needs to be "addressed."  He's a gift that keeps on giving. 


Random Monday Morning Thoughts

  • Across the nation, flags are at half-staff this morning because of the death of John McCain -- Except at the White House because of Trump. Incredible. (At 7:55 a.m., the flags were at full staff at the Wise County Courthouse. I presume that's an oversight which will be fixed very soon.)
  • There were eight turnovers by the Cowboys last night in a meaningless pre-season game. Mrs. LL had a free ticket to a suite last night but left at halftime. (You would have to pay me to go to -- and my price would be high.) 
  • On Friday, reporters started researching Twitter about references to John McCain. This 10 year old Tweet, found by this guy, did not have a SINGLE reply despite Obama asking for them. He would have been trolled to death today.
  • Ohio State head coach Urban Meyer had to issue an apology for the way he handled his first apology. He seems like a miserable human being. So do others . . . 
  • I find this so weird: Fewer and fewer young people have a driver's license. "For example, the percentages for 20- to 24-year-olds [who had a license] in 1983, 2008, 2011, and 2014 were 91.8%, 82.0%, 79.7%, and 76.7%. . . . ." 
  • Trump got to color with some kids on Friday. He colored the U.S. flag incorrectly. You've got those stripes wrong, buddy. Never be afraid to ask for help from those around you.
  • It was such a busy news week that I'm not even going to mention Trump jokingly one time kissed Giuliani's cleavage while Giuliani was dressed in drag, or that Trump invited a QAnon conspiracy theorist to the Oval Office last week, or that Trump rejected a proposal to issue an official White House statement on John McCain's passing.

  • While watching a very old OU/Texas game on Saturday on the Longhorn Network (I'm living full throttle), I heard the announcers say that the game between aTm and Houston was scheduled to kickoff at 10:30 p.m. in the Astrodome "after the baseball game." I had to look it up: It actually kicked off at 11:32 p.m on October 11, 1980. The Astros had a playoff game that day and it took a while to get the field ready
  • And lets check in on Christian DFW radio host Mark Davis had to say while McCain's body was still warm:  
  • I don't even have to click on the link to know who it is. 
  • The Texas prison system just voted to drastically slash the cost of inmate phone calls. The new contract will be 6 cents per minute instead of 26 cents. Texas has been exploiting prisoners through the phone system for years. I don't know what the rate is at the Wise County jail.
  • There was a (very confusing) story in the Dallas Morning News about a lawsuit over an agreement on a cocktail napkin.  Sound interesting? It's not because the story was written so poorly.  But I was struck by this paragraph explaining why the fight over the napkin was ultimately resolved by a settlement. I question any lawyer who thinks appellate work is harder than trial work. It's not even in the same ballpark. How do they not know that? 
  • There is no question there are thousands of lawyers in the "litigation section" of big law firms who have never been involved as first chair in a jury trial. I bet that number is 80%, and I might be undershooting it. 
  • Audio of the shooting in Jacksonville yesterday. The shooter was a 24 year old white male from a gated community in South Baltimore, MD who lost a video gaming tournament. (Totally irrelevant: I hung out at Jacksonville Landing back on one of my football trips.)
  • I became a grand-uncle (or whatever you call it) over the weekend.
  • Messenger: Above The Fold