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

Random Friday Morning Thoughts

A Plano bar got in hot water for a domestic violence joke. The bar was Scruffy Duffies which would later that year become part of the sensational murder case of Christina Morris. 

  • When I'm wrong, I'm wrong. And, man, I did not see this coming. 

    • So how did I screw this up, and what did I not put enough stock in? Upon reflecting about it:
      • You can't go out in the hallway and personally insult the jury during the trial and expect them not to hear about it.
      • You can't insult the judge daily and not expect the jury, which always respects the judge, to not hold that against you.
      • And you can't put on a stupid defense. To have any credibility, you have to admit the obvious and fight the key points. If it's a DWI case, you don't deny you were driving but you instead fight on whether you were "intoxicated." Here, Trump should have admitted the affair and the payoff but fought on (1) whether "attorney's fees" is a false statement, (2) whether there was intent to deceive, and (3) no intent to commit any "another crime".   Instead, Trump and his lawyer lost all credibility by denying everything
      • That being said, I'm still very surprised. But I also learned decades ago to never predict what a jury will do. 
    • One of these things is not like the other. 

    • It's absolutely shameful, embarrassing, and downright dangerous that Texas politicians have no respect for the criminal justice system.  I expect it from Paxton, but Abbott is former district judge, Texas Supreme Court justice, and attorney general.

    • Any chance he thinks that this post, from two days ago, came true?

    • Legal nerdy stuff: There has been some misinformation that the jury didn't have to unanimous about the verdict. That's wrong. They just didn't have to be unanimous on which of the three "other" crimes Trump intended to commit so long as they all agreed there was at least one.  Texas law does this on a ton of crimes
  • Lake Bridgeport has rise about 1 foot over the last week but still sits -10.79 low. It's gained about 4 feet over the entire spring. 
  • You probably have to see it to appreciate it, but the Valley View Volunteer Fire Department chief did a heck of job on Fox 4 last night.  Without waffling, he admitted a tornado warning siren didn't function. He also admitted taking down a prior Facebook post  (below) where he had made that admission. Was he trying to cover up the malfunction?  Nope. "I’m the one who said, ‘Alright, take it down. Let’s delete it because we were getting bashed .  And it’s not something we needed to have."  He could teach a PR class.

  • Tree limbs are heavy. Seriously. 

  • A Google search under their "news" tab is royally screwed up today.  I finally did a test with this:

  • 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: 4 years and 332 days.


Random Thursday Morning Thoughts

The photo made me laugh a little.

  • The Trump jury is deliberating without the benefit of having a copy of the 55 page jury charge (PDF) in the jury room. That's insane.  And, frankly, even if they had it with them , they wouldn't be able to make heads or tails out of it because it is shockingly confusing. 

    • And I've pointed this out before, but I'll do it again: Anyone want to explain how Juror #2 is going vote to convict?

  • In wake of his flag controversies, Justice Alito wrote a letter (PDF) to Congress yesterday announcing he would not recuse himself from January 6th cases pending before the Supreme Court.  I can't believe he wrote this: 

    • In response, a January 6th defendant, with a case pending before the Supreme Court, congratulated him for not recusing himself.  Does it kind of feel like our whole system is falling apart?

  • All charges were dropped against golfer Scotty Scheffler.  If you think this would happen to a regular Joe, you're nuts.  A video released yesterday of a conversation he had with an officer while he was being detained revealed that Scheffler admitted that he "took him with you" and "took him with your car."

    • But Scheffler's lawyer had a fiery fiery response to this admission. "The officer was actually asking him leading questions and trying to get him to agree with them, and that’s why you don’t talk to the police.”

  • Seeing the video of a guy charged with Driving on a Suspended License appearing for a Zoom court appearance while driving encapsulates misdemeanor court. It didn't go well for him. 

  • The military has crashed another $101 million fighter jet. 

  • Bad prosecutor. Her biggest problem is that she allegedly applied for the loan for a side business while she was an assistant DA when, as an assistant DA, she wasn't allowed to have a side business.

  • The closest election in Texas I found from Tuesday is this one from Jeff Davis County where the jobs of sheriff and tax accessor are combined. 

  • A tremendous story of how the Texas Republican Party is morphing into a Christian Nationalist Party.

  • Messenger: Above the Fold


Random Wednesday Morning Thoughts

Steve Ballmer bought the Clippers from the embattled Donald Sterling.

  • Election results:
    • In something I wouldn't have predicted six months ago, Cary Mellema beat Chief Deputy Craig Johnson last night and will become Wise County's new sheriff. And it wasn't even close.

    • The West Texas Oilman PAC was victorious in installing Andy Hopper as state rep over incumbent Lynn Stucky. The day after the district was redrawn three years ago, I went on a lengthy rant about how, for the first time ever, Wise County would have the clout to elect a local resident as state rep.  But this wasn't exactly what I had in mind. 

    • The Wise County Conservative group has taken their beatings in the past, but they showed up yesterday to vote for their ordained candidates.

    • From a statewide standpoint, Ken Paxton and the mob were hell bent on unseating House Speaker Dave Phelan.  He won by 366 votes.

    • Ugh.

  • The jury will start deliberating today in Trump's criminal trial after (the way too long) closing arguments ended late yesterday evening. What will happen? Compare and contrast these posts from yesterday posted five minutes apart:

    • You know the craziest thing about the Trump trial? The lawyers, because of New York law, had to give closing argument before the jury was given the courts instruction and verdict form. It will be today when the judge will read the charge to the jury. I can't stress enough how insane this is. I've never given a closing argument in life where I haven't held up the jury charge and explained how the evidence fits the law that the judge has just given them. 

    • Didn't expect Robert De Niro to show up outside the courthouse yesterday. “I don’t mean to scare you. No, wait, maybe I do mean to scare you,” he said. “If Trump returns to the White House, you can kiss these freedoms goodbye that we all take for granted.”  

  • The wind blowing a jet away from the boarding walk at DFW yesterday was nuts. Video.  And wasn't that wing bent back there at the end?

  • Nothing stays under the radar quite like the Wise County nudist park. From today's front page of the Star-Telegram:

  • I thought I would have learned of the name of 18 year old who drowned at Lake Bridgeport on Sunday by now. Maybe the Update will have it this morning. 


Random Tuesday Morning Thoughts

Runoff election flashback.

  • Crazy weather this morning.


    • The metroplex seems to be having a tough time.

  • One of the deceased is 29-year-old Kathryn Elizabeth Lain of Boyd.

  • Have I missed it, or has there not been a funeral announcement for the woman and three children who were killed on 1810 a couple of weeks ago?
  • Courthouse restoration update: Wise County Judge J.D. Clark sends along the discovery of an original painting buried under tons of paint on the metal doors protecting what had been become the district attorney's office. 

  • Trump:
    • He provided this heartwarming Memorial Day message to honor all fallen soldiers.

    • He has now learned for the very first time that the State has a tremendous advantage in closing arguments. (He better be glad he's not in Texas where the State gets to go first and last with the defendant sandwiched in the middle.)

    • Those closing arguments are scheduled today. I heard something crazy on NBC this weekend: In New York, the jury does not have a copy of the (complicated) jury instructions in the jury room. They just have to rely upon their memory of them from when the judge read them in open court. I'm having a hard time believing that is true. 
  • And you wonder why there are protests on college campuses. Over 40 innocent people dead.

  • Election day is today with Wise County voters finding out who the new sheriff and the state rep will be. 
    • I noticed that Andy Hopper filed a recent "one day" financial report where the only contribution was from the West Texas Oilman PAC.

    • He also thought it was a good idea to go on Steve Bannon's show on a fringe right wing network.

  • Random home of in Southlake for sale for $7.85 million.

  • I'm mildly interested in the Mike Tyson/Jake Paul upcoming fight, but I did see where Tyson had a "medical scare" on a cross country flight on Sunday.