Random Thursday Morning Thoughts

Ten years ago this week, Dave Barnett, during a game, suddenly uttered an incoherent sentence: "Go-ahead run is at fifth, on what Adams is insisting on calling it a botched robbery. What actually happened was his henchman, took a piece, literally, out of my . . . . "  It came out of nowhere. Listen. He strangely never worked for the Rangers again although he did find gigs elsewhere.

  • They "would not confirm if the leave was paid or unpaid." Story.

  • The reaction to the Senate clearing the way for the "gun bill" (which really has nothing to do with guns) was about what you would expect in some circles. 
    • Fox News' Carlson Tucker was handling it well. 
    • As did the Jewish Laser QAnon Princess who has somehow become a Republican leader. Video.

  • The January 6th Committee's fourth televised hearing today will focus on Trump trying to strong arm the Justice Department to overturn the election. It's a crazy chapter in an unfolding crazy book.  And you'll also get to learn the name of Jeffrey Clark who took part in a bizzaro meeting in the Oval Office. 

    • He was a spare environmental lawyer inside the Justice Department who gullibly would accept Internet rumors and "was the butt of the joke, a guy who — in spite of his education — lacked the ability to discern fact from fiction on the World Wide Web." He also wanted to overturn the election. Trump found out about him, loved him, and invited him to the Oval Office to consider appointing him as the Attorney General to lead the attempted coup. (Bill Barr had just resigned over Trump's craziness.) 
    • When "acting attorney general Jeffrey Rosen [learned of the meeting] he tracked down his deputy, Richard Donoghue, who had been walking on the Mall in muddy jeans and an Army T-shirt. There was no time to change. They raced to the Oval Office." They would threatened Trump with mass resignations in the Justice Department if Clark was appointed. 
    • That showdown meeting also led to one of the greatest all-time lines, issued by Donoghue, during that tense showdown: “You’re an environmental lawyer. How about you go back to your office, and we’ll call you when there’s an oil spill.” 

  • Pretty dramatic pictures of a two-time American Olympian being rescued by her coach during training.  

  • Not only was the actual Vietnam war helicopter used for "tourism", it also "appeared in a number of films, including Die Hard, The Rock,  and Baywatch."

  • In Harris County during "jury appreciation week", the District Clerk decided to bring in speakers to briefly address potential jurors who had been called in for jury duty. Think that's a good idea before they head off for formal jury selection in individual courts? How about if one of the speakers basically gave a prosecution pep talk and said, "I’ve seen juries bring justice to many families in Harris County who have lost loved ones to senseless violence.” 

  • A West Virginia town came up with an alternative plan for speeders. They could either go to court and handle the case there, or they could just, up front, make a "donation" of  toys,  gift cards, or cash which would then be "provided to the needy."  What could possibly go wrong? Especially if there was no oversight or auditing of the donations. You guessed it

  • I'll admit I didn't even know the Fox News mogul was married to Mick Jagger's ex.

    • I also just learned Jerry Hall had a cameo in Urban Cowboy

  • Texas being Texas again.

  • I'm really surprised by this. (The story isn't online yet. I want to know what they were paying.) 

  • A landlord can't discriminate when it comes to renting housing, but what if you have the weird situation where it's not the landlord who wants to discriminate but the HOA doing it? In Providence Village in Denton County, an HOA enacted a rule which "fines landlords $300 per week as long as they participate in the federal voucher program"-- a program which provides financial assistance to renters who are historically low income minorities.  And the whole town town is covered by HOAs. The new rule will cause 150 families to move out. How wild.  Story. 

  • Very, very nerdy legal stuff: (1) A criminal case on appeal, which I had mentioned here before because it had been reversed by the Fort Worth court of appeals, is now going to be heard by Texas' highest criminal court. Defense lawyer Ray Napolitan has the case which has taken on a life of its own. (2) That highest court took strange action on two cases yesterday which, after deciding to hear them, abruptly changed is mind and dismissed the appeals as "improvidently granted." And the two were high profile cases: Roy Oliver, the Balch Springs cop convicted of murder, and a crazy case out of Houston involving Sandra Jean Melgar which had been featured on 20/20.