El Paso-centric info and commentary from the Center of North America

Archive for February 2nd, 2009

NPT Capitol: Stimulating Shapleigh

shapleigh1State Senator Eliot Shapleigh, D-El Paso today filed a concurrent resolution that takes advantage of the so-called Clyburn Amendment in the federal stimulus package.

The Clyburn amendment, passed in the US House version of HR1, allows states to request stimulus aid through a concurrent resolution of the state Legislature – effectively bypassing state governors that oppose the stimulus legislation in Congress.

The bill is targeted at Governor Perry, who has expressed hostility to the stimulus package (and all things Washington, especially a certain someone) in recent weeks. If the Texas Legislature passed a series of concurrent resolutions like Shapleigh’s, (read it here) Perry could be effectively shut out of much the action when it comes to federal money in Texas.

Read more on NPT

The resolution, if passed, would, “urge the Congress…to provide emergency funding and resources” aimed at “addressing increasing delays at U.S. ports of entry on the Texas-Mexico border.” Specifically it asks that, “the congress provide funding for 24-hour customs operations and for infrastructure improvements, including more customs inspection lanes and more customs inspectors.”

Written by newspapertreeelpaso

February 2, 2009 at 10:53 pm

NPT: Two takes on El Paso’s ‘Reefer Madness’

Two new pieces on El Paso City Council’s Drug War resolution:

From the Austin Chronicle:

Reefer Madness: Don’t Talk About It
El Paso council slapped for questioning drug war
In El Paso, there are some public-policy questions that are not up for discussion.


From the Washington Times:

El Paso ‘dialogue’ on drugs leaves some speechless

“Are you on drugs?”

That was the question raised at a meeting of the El Paso City Council by resident Armando Cordoza after the council voted 8-0 earlier this month on a resolution asking the federal government to begin an “open, honest national dialogue on ending the prohibition of narcotics.”

The contentious measure – drafted by the city’s Committee on Border Relations, comprising local businessmen, academics and lawyers – was meant to respond to escalating drug violence in El Paso’s Mexican border city, Ciudad Juarez.

Written by newspapertreeelpaso

February 2, 2009 at 9:17 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

NPT Capitol: The British are coming!

Prince Charles of Great Britain sends a message to the Texas Legislature
Watch the video here

The message was in response to a conference put on at the Capitol by the British Consulate in Houston.

Written by newspapertreeelpaso

February 2, 2009 at 12:09 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

NPT Capitol: Socialism

The other day, on the House floor, I was desperate to get a good picture of the dais. Reporters have to stay behind the brass rail and so no such picture was forthcoming. Then, very kindly, a representative offered to take the picture for me. (I shan’t say which one.) She was a sweet lady, probably in her late 40s and it was very kind of her to oblige me. After I had received my camera back, we visited. Like most Texans, she ascertained I was from England. She proceeded to tell me that I was extremely welcome in her state….

BUT…All that she asked was that I leave my “socialist values” on the European side of the Atlantic. Texas didn’t need them. That’s why Texas was doing so well, she assured me. Well, what could I do? She had been really gracious to take the photo hadn’t she?

So here’s what I’m going to do. I’ll leave the socialism to those French lefties on the condition that ten Americans will accurately define Socialism for me. (I’ll give extra marks for comments that distinguish Socialism from Communism, Collectivism and Marxist-Leninism)

Post you thoughts below!

Written by newspapertreeelpaso

February 2, 2009 at 11:35 am

Posted in Uncategorized

NPT Capitol: Political candy

A quick snap of what legislators eat for dessert at their Capitol cafeteria


Other items on the menu: sour grapes and humble pie

Written by newspapertreeelpaso

February 2, 2009 at 11:03 am

Posted in Uncategorized