Steve G.

Archive for January 10th, 2007|Daily archive page

City of Dallas can’t find enough board members

In Uncategorized on January 10, 2007 at 11:59 pm

A quarter of the City of Dallas’s various apppointed board positions are vacant. Each city council member is responsible for appointing around 18. In the words of councilmember Angela Hunt:

Sometimes it’s challenging, especially as I try to make it a policy to appoint people in my district…If anyone wants to serve, I would invite them to call my office. Ideally, I want to fill every position I have.

Right, OK. Because we wouldn’t want getting the job done to get in the way of bringing the bacon home for the district, right?

Here’s a hint: if you can’t find anybody in a city of 1.2 million to do a job, it’s probably not worth doing. Review of some of the boards reinforces this view:

  • Animal Shelter Commission
  • Landmark Commission
  • Commission on Productivity and Innovation
  • Martin Luther King Jr. Community Center Board (this is an entire board for one city-owned building)
  • Youth Commission

These board positions are unpaid, which is good, because if tax dollars were going towards this it would be extra-horrifying (and which explains why the Senior Affairs Commission is full), but also provides another reason for getting rid of them: if even a bloated municipal government won’t pay for something, it almost certainly has no value.

The City of Dallas (which I am not a resident of, but live in a town surrounded by -thus I have a vested interest in its governance) is pretty screwed-up anyways. Every Wednesday, the city-owned radio station, which is generally a very good classical music station, despite its being city-owned, broadcasts the Dallas City Council meetings. They’re full of arguments over how to apply silly rules. Today there was an argument about whether to renew a permit for a tatoo parlor. Another time it was whether a private builder would have discretion of what color brick it would use on the patio of a new high-rise. It’s easy to look at the federales and get pissed off, but look closer to home sometimes too – municipal governments are huge, and nobody’s paying attention.


Surge & Dictatorship

In Civil Liberties, Constitutional Rights, Iraq War, Middle East, Politics, War on January 10, 2007 at 9:45 pm

Tuesday, January 9th in News by James Bovard on Antiwar Blog

The real issue in Bush’s speech Wednesday night is not the additional troops he intends to send to Iraq. The real issue is his nearly open proclamation of dictatorial powers.

Apparently, once a president lies a nation into war, he is entitled to absolute power for as long as he chooses. Regardless of how many Americans die or how many hundreds of thousands of foreigners are killed, the president’s prerogatives are sacred, at least as long as he recites the proper phrases regarding the spread of freedom and democracy. American voters made their will on Iraq clear at the polling booth last November. But they, like the Constitution and the federal statute book, don’t matter.

We have already heard from Bush or his lackeys about how the president is entitled to violate laws regarding wiretaps, renditions, torture, mail privacy, etc. The latest “surge” is just another example of how Bush rules by decree.

Will Bush, like other aspiring dictators, be able to cow opposition long enough to consolidate the powers he has seized?

And if the term dictator is offensive – then what is a better term for a politician who claims to be bound by no law or Constitution?

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LP Radicals Antiwar Press Release

In Democrats, Iraq War, Libertarian, Media, Middle East, Politics, Republican, Taxation, War on January 10, 2007 at 12:56 am

The Libertarian Party Radical Caucus
NEW (9 January, 2007):

The LP Radical Caucus offers a press release sketching a Libertarian response to the Bush adminstration’s war escalation.

The press release is for the use of any Libertarian Party affiliate or organization wanting a rapid and forceful response to Bush’s call for escalation in Iraq. Please feel free to place your group’s name and contact information on it and release it to your local media. If you would like to make changes, feel free to do so. No credit need (or should) be given – release this under your own group’s name. The LP should be providing affiliates with platform-compliant, forceful statements on current news events. The LP should be taking a strong antiwar stand. The activists of the LP Radical Caucus offer this release to help LP affiliates make a strong Libertarian statement on current events.

9 January, 2007

[contact info here]

The people must lead, and the leaders must follow.

In November, the American people clearly demanded an end to war and occupation in Iraq.

George Bush’s response is now clear: he plans to repeat the mistakes of Vietnam and escalate a war that most Americans and most Iraqis do not support; a military occupation and puppet rule that has killed hundreds of thousands of Iraqi civilians and killed or maimed tens of thousands of American soldiers.

The Democratic Party has also turned a deaf ear to those who voted in the vain hope that Democrats would end the occupation. Democratic Party leaders in Congress have opted for ‘partnership’ in the crimes of the Bush administration, rather than leadership in ending the unlawful military action.

The Libertarian Party stands absolutely opposed to the war in Iraq and to foreign military intervention anywhere. The politicians have demonstrated that they will not lead, so they must be made to follow. If those opposed to the war – from left, right, and center – gather together with a passionate focus solely on ending American imperialism, the rulers will follow the people – as they should. If we let ourselves be divided at this critical moment in history by our domestic differences, the wars started in the last century will linger on and end in disaster. We must stand united against the coming draft, against the expansion of imperial rule, and against all aggression both at home and abroad.

Libertarians call on Congress to end taxation and spending in support of the Iraq and Afghanistan wars, to end preparations in place for a new draft (including selective service registration), and to end punishing embargoes everywhere which encourage war and discourage the expansion of peace through trade and communication.

As Libertarians, we seek a world of liberty; a world in which all individuals are sovereign over their own lives and no one is forced to sacrifice his or her values for the benefit of others.

We believe that respect for individual rights is the essential precondition for a free and prosperous world, that force and fraud must be banished from human relationships, and that only through freedom can peace and prosperity be realized.

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