It's Friday -- Let's Get Out of Here

Random Friday Morning Thoughts

We had the Jodi Arias verdict and the beginning of two years of Benghazi hearings. 

  • Look, I like Chief Steve Stanford. I like him a lot. But the statement below was a little "out there." These boys -- who have had their faces plastered all over DFW -- are charged with a Class B misdemeanor. That's one level above a traffic ticket.

  • Rep. Jeff Leach might have run up to Allen last Saturday to get in front of the cameras to offer thoughts and prayers, but he's back in Austin working passionately to actually do something about it try and get sports betting passed.

  • Legal (alleged) crime blotter.
    • Lawyer out of Wichita Falls, Dean Colin Godfrey, 34. Story. Pay-walled.

    • Former Dean of St. Mary's Law School in San Antonio. Story. Pay-walled. 

  • Seems like a big deal: The Texas Supreme Court has approved, and made available online, do-it-yourself wills. 

  • Trump double-downed and repeated the accusation which cost him $5 million this week.  This gives rise to some pretty interesting legal theories/principals.  A jury has found Trump's statements to be (1) false (2) made with actual malice, and (3) that she had been harmed.  Once that verdict becomes final after appeals, those issues will forever been judicially determined. So when Trump says the exact same thing again, winning becomes real easy. I'm not sure the verdict form wouldn't just ask (1) Did he say it again? (2) How much does he have to pay?

  • I'm not sure what was going on at Mar-a-Lago last night, but Trump was hanging out with ladies and dancing to the Village People (video). 

  • Woah. Woah. Woah. Let's tap the brakes on this. 

  • Almost all of the NFL teams release a video promoting the newly announced schedules for the upcoming season.  This one by the Titans made me actually laugh out loud. It's two minutes. It's great. Do yourself a favor.

  • Extremely nerdy current events legal stuff for lawyers only: It made news this week when the Texas House made the historic decision to kick out a member for misconduct -- the first time in 100 years.  But check out how the  official Committee of General Investigating's landmark 16 page report, which recommended expulsion, handled legal citations. The committee is made up of five people - four are lawyers, including a law professor.  

  • Time which has passed since the Wise County Sheriff's Office, despite having a full male DNA profile, has failed to solve the murder of Lauren Whitener in her home at Lake Bridgeport: 3 years, 310 days.


Random Thursday Morning Thoughts

When I published this one ten years ago, little did I know how 
famous AR-15s would become. 

  •  The Austin judge gave the State what they wanted. Now we'll see if Abbott tosses aside the jury trial process simply because a guy on "his side" was convicted for murdering a guy on "their side."

  • There might be millions of guys out there asking, "I could have gotten actually arrested for just that?" Seriously, I was discussing this case with some folks in town and we kind of agreed on our own made up "Cringe Factor Test." If reading about the facts about any criminal case makes you cringe, it is probably a good case. If it doesn't, it probably shouldn't be in the system. 

  • Legislative news
    • There will be no private death squads patrolling the border with criminal immunity after all. Any work-around amendments to other bills did not include the private army provision. 

    • The Texas House actually acted sensibly last night when it voted to kill its last shot at a School Voucher bill which would have destroyed public schools by funneling taxpayer money to unregulated private for-profit religious schools.  David Spiller and Lynn Stucky voted for the vouchers. Note: It's not over. The Senate Bill voucher bill could still be passed by the House.

  • It took him a couple of months, but the ultra-MAGA new Tarrant County judge is starting to act exactly like we thought he would. You know, there might have been a mass murder in a neighboring county but let's focus instead on something which didn't happen south of downtown. 

  • Uhhh . . . 

  • That's not way to treat a man who claims to be Heisman Trophy winner, walked on the moon, and who was married to Princess Grace.

    • He even stole his outrage from someone else. 

  • CNN gave Insurrectionist Donald Trump a full hour last night to lie at will while spitting on  democracy in front of a friendly MAGA audience. It was the lowest and saddest moment in the network's history. I had to turn it off.

  • A blogging pioneer (who, frankly, I had never heard of) has committed suicide. The New York Times story about her paints a picture of the very common charade of people presenting a picture of a perfect persona online when, in actuality, all hell is breaking lose internally.

  • Messenger: Above the Fold


Random Wednesday Morning Thoughts

The now defunct Deadspin gave us great stories and graphics like this

  • The presumptive presidential nominee of the Republican Party: 

    • You've probably seen it, but he was destined to get crushed in this lawsuit once this part of his deposition was played to the jury. He was asked about the Access Hollywood tape and he said that not only was it true that "stars" could grab any woman, but that it was also "fortunately" true.  What a moron. 

  • Business news moments ago: Inflation has cooled for the 10th straight month. 
  • DPS confirmed that the Allen mall shooter was a neo-Nazi when it said investigators "determined that Garcia subscribed to neo-Nazi ideology, with neo-Nazi tattoos and patches found on his person at the scene of the crime." Side note: DPS's $300,000 Man, who is still employed somehow, was not at the press conference yesterday. DPS sent the "regional director" and at least seven others instead. 

    • There's been a weird attempt on social media to deny that the shooter was a neo-Nazi and has even gone so far as to say it as all a false flag. A big supporter of this weirdness is Elon Musk. Why did it offend him when he heard that there were reports that the guy was a white supremist?

  • I told you yesterday that the bill to raise the purchase age of an AR-15 from 18 to 21 didn't stand a chance. Late last night it died, without having the House or Senate ever even vote on it, when it was left off the calendar deadline. 

  • A DPS unnamed trooper was hit by friendly fire to the north of us in an incident where law enforcement killed a man in a "hail of gunfire" --  although the deceased didn't fire a shot. It all began in Archer County and ended up in Wichita Falls. The deceased, Anthony Scott Nelon, 45,  has the exact same name as man who used to live in Paradise. I'm trying to figure out if it was him. 

  • Trouble in Denton County after a "forensic death investigator" was arrested for theft. That's a weird position she held in that it doesn't appear that she worked for any law enforcement agency but is simply employed by Denton County (who doesn't have its own medical examiner.)

  • The convicted murderer out of Austin who had racist rants on social media before the killing and who Gov. Abbott announced his desire to pardon, has still yet to be sentenced. Yesterday, prosecutors told the judge they wanted 25 years. The defense asked for 10. (In Texas, a person can never get probation for murder regardless of the circumstances.)
  • No!!!!!

  • In the weeds legislative action last night. One of the most disturbing Texas bills which was momentarily killed last night, but was basically resurrected in a different version, is House Bill 20 which allows the equivalent of private storm troopers with no law enforcement to "enforce" the border. It's disturbing because it grants "immunity from criminal and civil liability."  That creates private death squads.


Random Tuesday Morning Thoughts

For a while, the Messenger fell into the hands of a different editor and publisher. They put this on the front page. I thought that was weird then, and I still do. 

  •  Look at their faces. 
    • Wylie ISD announced that 4th grader Daniela Mendoza and 2nd grader Sofia Mendoza were killed in the Allen shooting. The sisters attended Cox Elementary in Sachse. Their mother is in critical condition. 

    • You see this family? The only one still alive is the 6 year old at the bottom. His parents, Cindy and Kyu Cho, are dead along with his 3 year old brother, James.  

    • A 26 year old engineer, Aishwarya Thatikonda.

  • And now we learn that the shooter was a full blown neo-Nazi.

    • Fox News tells us not to rush to judgment before we badmouth racists. Hey, lady, it didn't take rocket science to crack the case.

    • Other than Wise County's own troubled Rep. Ronny Jackson falsely who quickly and falsely blamed illegal immigration for the murders, let's see how a couple of others initially handled the news. 
      • The True Texas Project is the same outfit which welcomed Kari Lake and Kyle Rittenhouse in Farmer's Branch last month -- an event which was promoted by the Wise County Conservatives. 

      • You just knew she would spread false information like a Nazi. 

    • How bad is it getting? Eric and Laura Trump will be at Trump's National Doral in Miami this weekend speaking at "Reawaken America" tour which will have featured speakers of nutcases Scott McKay and Charlie Ward. McKay says the Jews killed Lincoln and  Kennedy. Charlie Ward regularly shares Hitler videos.  You know, totally normal stuff.  Have I mentioned we are headed to a dark place? 

  • Don't for a second think anything will come of this bill which prevents those under 21 from legally purchasing an AR-15. I bet it won't even get a vote in the Texas House. They fear the NRA and the gun nuts more than they care about children. 

  • Audio.

  • Yesterday, the Fifth Circuit announced that the appeal of the Trump judge's ruling in Amarillo will be heard by a three judge panel which consists of two Trump appointed judges.  There's now no need for briefing or argument.