2nd Thought

Weapons of Mass Exploitation

Ravi Batra
Prior to the U.S. invasion of Iraq in March 2003, there was frenzied talk about WMDs — weapons of mass destruction. When it was later determined that Saddam Hussein possessed neither chemical nor nuclear weapons, the White Ho...


IffySwift Justice

An immodest proposal for tykes’ right to carry.
E.R. BILLS
Oh boy, here we go again. Last month, a kindergartner carried a gun into a Houston elementary school, and it fired when he was trying to pull it out and show it off at lunch. There’s no mystery regarding what happened next: T...



Fiddling, Burning

Politicians are mugging while Texas’ future goes up in flames.
DAVE McNEELY
The lobbyist walked out of the capitol, disgustedly shaking his head. “It’s the worst session I’ve ever seen,” said the lobbyist, a former legislator of more than a decade. “Everybody over there’s scared to death.


Joe Barton: Not Too Bright

How many energy industry lobbyists does it take to screw in a lightbulb?
E.R. BILLS
Hardly a day goes by that I don’t hear someone around here complaining about politicians who are ignoring the will of the people or not measuring up as a representative of the people. Folks are all fired up and want something...



Today Libya, Tomorrow Syria?

There’s a bigger picture to consider.
Gwynne Dyer
Last Friday saw the first nationwide protests against the Baath regime in Syria. If these protests develop into a full-scale revolt, the regime’s response may dwarf that of Col. Muammar Qaddafi in Libya.  


The Emperor’s New Budget

Maybe Perry’s school didn’t have money to teach math.
DAVE McNEELY
It’s time for the state to tighten its belt, wrote Talmadge Heflin, former chair of the Appropriations Committee of the Texas House of Representatives, back in February.



Chilling Effect

The form a woman must sign before getting an abortion is almost enough by itself to stop her.
DAVE McNEELY
As part of his continuing effort to deter women from having abortions, Republican State Sen. Dan Patrick of Houston has gotten the Texas Senate to agree to require that sonograms be performed and shown to all pregnant woman see...


An Immodest Proposal

Think about this one: drug thugs as la migra.
E. R. BILLS
Tell me if this sounds familiar. The U.S. trains another country’s paramilitary forces to wage war against American enemies. Those forces do fight U.S. enemies but later change sides to become a different, perhaps greater men...



Tell a Joke for Sam

Longtime Texas newsman and Fort Worth native Sam Kinch Jr. wanted no flowers, just his own frank obit.
DAVE McNEELY
Sam Kinch Jr., among the finest Texas political reporters ever, died Feb. 1. On Feb. 18, he would have been 71. Sam earned a reputation during his 40-year career for tenacious journalism, working on behind-the-scenes stories th...


A Different Playing Field

While Super Bowl fans cheered, protesters on the other side of the world fought the real battle.
GRAYSON HARPER
Well, here we are in the greatest country in the world. The snow melted just in time for the massed mobs to watch the gladiators have a go at each other. Tickets, as of Sunday morning, were going for between $3,500 and $20,000....