Governor Rick Perry's newest appointee may have broken the deadlock at the Public Utility Commission of Texas, but rigging the electricity marketplace to benefit large generators won't happen without drawing blood. At a PUC meeting late last month, Commissioners Donna Nelson and Brandy Marty each s ... More >>
But hey: At least it ain't Cars 2
On Friday afternoon, at 4:07 p.m., a round of applause and cheers wafted down from the balcony seats in House of Representatives as a five-pack of craft beer bills were passed with five thick slams of the gavel. It was technically the second vote of three, and the third, as a matter of formality, sh ... More >>
Dave Eagle of Eagle Mountain Farmhouse Cheese in Granbury speaks with a strong Texas swagger and often in a very direct, to-the-point manner. Before becoming a cheese maker, he practiced law. And I suspect that if you were involved in some type of litigation, you'd want him on your side of the table ... More >>
As they try to carve out a permanent niche in the ultra-competitive American car market, Tesla and billionaire founder Elon Musk have had to position themselves as sprightly Davids disrupting the lumbering Goliaths of Detroit and Japan. They have no other choice. They can't afford the untold billio ... More >>
The Arlington Police Department recently got permission from the FAA to use the two small, battery-operated drones they purchased last year using grant money from Homeland Security. Presumably, the drones will mostly be used to hover over Jerry Jones while he's at work, clipping him in the head with ... More >>
Tapping into the burgeoning local craft beer scene, The Dallas Winter Warmer is a one-day craft beer festival on December 15 featuring some local and national craft brewers. See also: - The Dallas Craft Beer Guide - Rise of the DFW Brew Today I spoke with the architect of this event, Matt Leff of ... More >>
Here we are, some 10 years into the deregulation of the Texas electricity grid, and a crisis approaches. Supply, it is predicted, will not keep pace with demand in the very near future. Generators say electricity prices are simply too low to justify the financing of new power plants. In fact, in at ... More >>
A federal judge has ruled that the City of Dallas pretty much lied about every single aspect of its so-called "flow-control" trash program. Judge Reed O'Connor granted a permanent injunction against a new city ordinance that would have forced commercial haulers to take all their trash to the city- ... More >>
I've called this emergency meeting of the Dallas Area Chocoholics Anonymous to prepare for the onslaught of chocolate temptation coming our way this Saturday at the Chocolate Conference & Festival.
Many people were not happy when the city unveiled its long-term solid waste management plan. It's goal of achieving zero waste by 2040 was admirable enough, but the plan pushed consideration of such measures as a plastic bag ban, mandatory recycling and increased composting efforts out a decade or m ... More >>
Mitt Romney did himself no favors in Iowa when a spokesman told the Des Moines Register the candidate would "allow the wind credit to expire, end the stimulus boondoggles and create a level playing field on which all sources of energy can compete on their merits." In Iowa and much of the Midwest, t ... More >>
Imbroglios don't get more prosaic than this: A USDA newsletter suggests its employees practice "Meatless Mondays," thereby shrinking their ecological footprint. Skip the Salisbury steak at the cafeteria and eat a plant instead. Take into account the ever-swelling asses of the American public and th ... More >>
How greedy speculators bought politicians and drove up the price of oil.
Here's a question for all you MBAs in Unfair Park Land: Why would an independent retailer operating in a free, deregulated market want the state to take steps to suddenly raise the retailer's costs? For example, say you own a mom-and-pop store that sells tomatoes. The government suddenly wants to i ... More >>
Mitt Romney’s years at Bain Capital represent everything you hate about capitalism.
Coal-fired power plants generated some 30 percent less electricity in January than they did during the same month in 2011 -- a huge drop for a a workhorse fleet that has historically fed this state's sprawling transmission system with a steady supply of baseload power since pretty much forever. Pro ... More >>
Via.LaPrelle says the Big Boy's move in April has prompted calls from all over the world.Got a call this morning from Bob LaPrelle, president and CEO of the Museum of the American Railroad, which, as you're well aware by now, is due to roll out of Fair Park to its new digs in Frisco. I'd left him ... More >>
Figured it out. I can tell you why the Republicans keep assassinating their own nominees. It all goes back to the Trinity River levees. What? You think I can't connect those dots? Stand back. Right now the GOP rivals are reducing Newt Gingrich to road-kill in Iowa with Super-PAC attack ads o ... More >>
Steven DoyleRed tide, the naturally occurring algae bloom that causes toxicity in shellfish, continues to plague the state's coastline -- keeping Texas oysters out of local restaurants and threatening the $18.5 million Texas oyster industry. The state closed the entire coast of Texas to oyst ... More >>
Crowd funding from fans frees her to create Chesapeake.
If you're reading this blog, it's likely you frequent a record store, and there are several good ones in the area to choose from. But, if you didn't realize that purchasing music online is a mild sin, and if your record store of choice is the iTunes store or Amazon.com, you might be out of ... More >>
The University of Texas released the preliminary results today of that comprehensive study on the controversial natural gas producing process known as hydraulic fracturing (or fracking), drawing no link between it and claims of groundwater contamination. "While there have been casing/cement ... More >>
After the first Houston Beer Week last year, Houstonians Cathy Clark and Jay Rascoe (aka Guns and Tacos) decided Dallas needed its own week to celebrate craft beer as well, as we first told you back in February. Since then, the events planned for Dallas Beer Week, November 12 through19, have draw ... More >>
Most food holidays start with "National." National Tequila Day and National Rum Day have both been marked on City of Ate in recent months. Tomorrow is National Taco Day, and if you're inclined you can refer to this calendar, which demonstrates nearly every day of the year is devoted to a specific fo ... More >>
The council may or may not vote on that ordinance involving the redirecting and recycling of solid waste today. It all depends where flow control falls on the action-packed agenda, which includes passing the budget (that should go smoothly) and debating Yucatan and Service Bar's denied-at-CPC spe ... More >>
None of the commodity-on-the-hoof gurus saw this one coming. They had predicted another fat increase in feedlot placements, not unlike July's USDA Cattle On Feed report. Yet here we are, and the Beef Engine of America is in the midst of an historic drought, our forage exhausted, our ranchers ... More >>
Photo by Sam MertenThe J.L. Turner Legal Association is better known as the African-American bar association in Dallas, and bills itself as "the oldest and largest national association of African-American and minority attorneys, jurists, legal scholars, and law students in the world." Its leaders ... More >>
To keep his promise, Dallas' new mayor will have to distance himself from the city's political machine. Good luck with that.
Via.This morning the city posted the agenda for the first-ever meeting of the Gas Drilling Task Force, which kicks off Tuesday at 2 p.m., don't be late. The agenda's mostly a bunch of introductory what-whats: Chair Lois Finkelman will give some opening remarks, outline its scope and schedule, rev ... More >>
Even restaurants with God in their names aren't immune to the economy. (Or maybe God got shorted on his order of potato skins.) The T.G.I. Friday's chains Irving location at 1001 MacArthur Park has closed. Every piece of T.G.I. Friday's flair and signage has been removed and all that remain ... More >>
Southern Dallas, especially the ministerial leadership, seems to be pretty locked up behind mayoral candidate Mike Rawlings. In explaining that to myself, I do allow for Rawlings's charismatic personality and his track record on community issues. He's got things going for him. (Well, maybe no ... More >>
Tomorrow, as you now doubt are well aware by now, is the fourth annual official Record Store Day, in which we all get together and celebrate the brick-and-mortar shops that have managed to survive through the economy and the Internet stealing all of the action.But, really, just how bad are things ... More >>
If a mega-tornado strikes Oak Lawn or zombies take over the city, there's one thing we here at the Observer won't have to worry about while we're barricaded in the break room: a food shortage. Not only do we have enough of those neon orange crackers to feed everyone for three days, we also g ... More >>
Texas wine enthusiasts seeking a better way to convey to consumers which local wines deserve their attentions are broaching the possibility of creating a wine quality program. Russ Kane, a wine writer who's moderating a panel on wine quality at this week's Texas Wine and Grape Growers Associ ... More >>
Local Movement Fights for Cottage Food Bill.
T Bone BurnettThe Producers & Engineers Wing of the Recording Academy swears it's kind of a big deal, having created a "best practices guideline" and leading various charges, etc., since forming 10 years ago. OK, whatever. Doesn't really matter.Because, if nothing else, what it's doing in the ... More >>
Another Texas vodka has reached the Dallas market, although an owner of Rebecca Creek Distillery says his spirits company won't confine itself to vodka for long. "These are the first two products," Brian Lowrance says of Enchanted Rock vodka and a single malt barley whiskey set for release n ... More >>
The recent announcement that scientists found flame retardant in butter sold at Dallas groceries has fed a firestorm in the pallet industry. A plastic pallet manufacturer this week filed a lawsuit against the U.S. National Wooden Pallet and Container Association (NWPCA), accusing the trade g ... More >>
Now THAT'S a girly drink, though we hope he doesn't keep his vodka in the freezer.A record number of women are vying for Senate seats and gubernatorial offices today, suggesting the political sphere is inching, ever so slowly, toward parity. Now if only the liquor industry could catch up. Wh ... More >>
The website for Fearing's is a pretty good model of restaurant website design. It doesn't sing, or waste time on Flash graphics that never load properly. It helpfully provides menus and hours and allows patrons to make online reservations. Fearing's iPhone app is somewhat less impressive. Th ... More >>
Cookingbytheseatofmypants.comGrapeFest is underway, which means the People's Choice Wine Tasting Classic - billed as the nation's largest consumer judged wine contest - is back. We asked Jeff Siegel, a Dallas wine educator who blogs as The Wine Curmudgeon, to offer first-timers a few tips for mak ... More >>
Lower Colorado River AuthorityA new Sierra Club report says coal ash from Central Texas' Fayette Power Plant is polluting the groundwater nearby.One month since the EPA's stolid road warriors blew threw Arlington to get your thoughts on pollution from gas drilling, the agency's making its triumph ... More >>
Now may be your best chance for a little raw love
There's a flurry of curry in the metroplex