By Jim Schutze
By Rachel Watts
By Lauren Drewes Daniels
By Anna Merlan
By Lee Escobedo
Crony baloney: This is an interesting race from an ethics standpoint ("Don't You Wish Your Mayor Was Hot Like Me...", by Matt Pulle, April 19). You have Hill under the shadow of an FBI investigation, but even more troubling you have the Trinity River project looming in the future and a construction company CEO (Leppert) and a developer who, rumor has it, just happens to be buying up a lot of land that would be part of the Trinity River project while he is not only a council member but also the head of the Trinity Project Committee (Oakley). Seems like Leppert and Oakley would both stand to make a financial killing by overseeing the Trinity River project as mayor, either directly through their own companies or by giving contracts to cronies. As we've seen with the Bush administration, cronyism always seems to work out so well in politics.
Laura Nation swings her hatchet: It's still a bit confusing, but this article gave a very insightful top line on all the contenders. Thank you. The one thing that makes me happy is our next mayor won't be Laura Miller. Another term with her and she would ban smoking in strip clubs.
Cry me a river: Leppert needs to get over the fact that he was raised by a single mother. So was I. So were many people. That doesn't particularly qualify him to be mayor, especially if that's his only selling point. He has no political experience, and I'm not sure we need a CEO-mayor. We've done pretty badly with a CEO-president.
Crazy for railbeds: Mr. Ed Oakley ensured that he would have a ready market for the abandoned railbeds he owns ("What a Woonerful World," by Jim Schutze, April 19) when he voted on the city's Comprehensive Plan last year. That plan contains an obscure provision (Section 126.96.36.199) that mandates that the city "acquire first right of refusal and the option to buy in the event of a decommissioned or abandoned rail line for the purpose of establishing a rails-to-trails program." So, instead of recusing himself from the vote, Mr. Oakley has ensured that he has a ready market for his property—all at taxpayers' expense. And here's another little-known fact: In May of 2004, Mr. Oakley announced that he had devised a plan to connect the Katy Trail to the Trinity River. What he didn't tell us then—and what appears to be true now—is that his plan was to make the voters of Dallas buy his properties to put his plan into action.
Got a Beef
Same conditions everywhere: I enjoyed reading your article ("Ground Meat," by Megan Feldman, April 5). I support the USDA at the help desk, and I've heard from inspectors that these types of practices are no different in any other plant. It's too bad it has to be like that.
Did you hear about the tornado that destroyed Cactus this past weekend? If they don't have enough problems there already, right?
Just want to smack somebody: That was freakin' hilarious! ("Footbawl," by Andrea Grimes, March 8). I was thinking about trying out. Are they easier on the fat girls? Because that is definitely me. I just want to smack somebody and not get arrested—this sounds perfect! Nice article—how brave you are.
Judge Roy Bean
You taught me well: Glenna Whitley and the Dallas Observer deserve an incredible amount of thanks for the exposé they did of our Judge Gene Knize ("Bully on the Bench," April 12). The Ellis County Observer blog that I publish only exists because of what I have read in this newspaper for years.