By Jim Schutze
By Rachel Watts
By Lauren Drewes Daniels
By Anna Merlan
By Lee Escobedo
By Eric Nicholson
A case of elephantitis
Haven't things in Dallas gotten so much simpler since everyone became Republican? Besides ending those tiresome differences of opinion on how to deal with matters such as the homeless, welfare, and gays, there were all those little hassles.
Like phone numbers.
In the old days when Democrats walked the earth, for example, Dallas City Council member Donna Blumer, also a member of the state Republican Executive Committee, would have to have two work phone numbers--one at City Hall for city business, and another somewhere else to reach her for GOP business.
But now, in her listing as a state Republican Party executive committeewoman, Sister Blumer simply has to include one office number: 670-3816, according to the Texas State Directory. Sure, it's her City Hall phone, paid for with taxpayer dollars. "It was an innocent mistake," says Blumer. "It never entered my mind that it would be a conflict."
But, why should it--we're all Republicans, aren't we?
Then there's the matter of Dallas County Commissioner Ken Mayfield's political fund-raising practices. Brother Republican Ken not only used the Oak Cliff Chamber of Commerce for a fund raiser, he included a flier for his First Annual Buck Hunt in the Grand Prairie chamber's newsletter.
If you're late on the political scene, a "buck hunt" is a rubber chicken dinner for raising dollars. Get it? For instance, if you were to throw $1,000 into Ken's slush fund, er, "account to pay for meaningful activities not paid for by the county," you bag a 12-point trophy; $25 gets you a spike. Temporary cash-flow problem? Relax--Brother Ken will take nickels and dimes under the category of "Missed my shot!"
Now in the old two-party days, it would be of dubious ethics--not to mention unsavvy politics--to use an ostensibly non-partisan group like the chamber to pad a political war chest. But we have to admit that the opportunity to send out campaign material on a constituent group's postage is tough to pass up.
Kay Bailey Hutchison's indictment for mixing politics with public business apparently hasn't left much of an impression on Texas politicians. But her subsequent acquittal sure did.
Next it'll be the Range Rovers
Buzz has uncovered another Sign of the Apocalypse for the Park Cities. This time it's the Animal Connection of Texas calling for a "March on Highland Park." On the day after Thanksgiving, the anti-fur group is planning to parade up Preston Road to Mockingbird, then around the tony Highland Park Village shopping center "to protest the wearing of fur."
We're puzzled. Why in the world would they single out Highland Park?
But we have to admit the Animal Connection, which calls for "compassion in fashion," has a memorable motto: "Get a feel for fur, slam your hand in a car door."
Buzz us at 757-8439 or via fax at 757-8539. Or mail us at observermcimail.docm or P.O. Box 190289, Dallas, 75219.