Aug 31, 2007

Friday Update

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First on today's list, I enjoyed meeting Buck Naked when I ran into him earlier this week. I recognized his voice from the radio, and found him to be as funny and genuine in real person as his blog suggests For the record, this was not a chance meeting in a men's room stall at an Orange County truck stop, nor did we exchange secret foot taps. As it turns out, we apparently buy groceries in the same supermarket.

Tidbits

Philip writes:

Welcome Mr. President - Fred Thompson joins the race.
Shrewed political analyst Klein apparently missed the significance of the date on Thompson's announcement.

Thompson must file his formal paperwork with the Federal Elections Commission within 15 days from the date of his formal announcement on September 6th. That takes us to September 21, when Thompson has 10 more days for his official campaign committee to register with the FEC. That date takes us to October 1st, the start of a new FEC reporting quarter. By delaying the filing of his organizational papers until books have closed on the third quarter of 2007, Thompson arguably will not have to file any disclosure reports with the FEC until January 31, 2008, after the Republican primaries/caucuses in Wyoming, Iowa, New Hampshire, Nevada, and Florida.

Considering Thompson's denial of working as a lobbyist for abortion groups and the use of secrecy as a campaign strategy suggests that he's not a straight shooter and lacks what is fundamentally needed in a President: accountability for his actions.

I'd love to discuss the candidacy of of Fred Thompson with Klein, but Philip's already proven man times that he can't think through the tough questions.

Closed - Downtown Port Arthur loses it's last bank. Done.
And Philip's point is? Downtown Port Arthur has been dead for years.

A Whopper - A 32% pay increase for the Jefferson County Deputies to get them in line with other departments because deputies are leaving the department due to low pay.

A Double Meat Whopper - Port Arthur and Beaumont have a staffing shortage because they cannot recruit officers to come to work.

Add Mustard - Now if deputies are leaving in droves to Beaumont and Port Arthur, why is there a glut in hiring in the two big city departments? Hmmmm..

Oh, Look! Philip's talking about Dairy Queen again! Does this gibberish make sense to anyone else?
3-8-8- - It is not an area code - it is the amount of money in the Beaumont Independent School District Bond. It has one chance to pass and 387 reasons to fail.
We'll revisit in the future.

The Road To Nowhere - The EDC is declared DOA by the Nederland City Council. They want half of their money to go to roads. So the voters will say yes or no. Remember the rule - once they tax they never give it back. They just find more ways to spend it.
Is that like the "Bridge to Nowhere" in Alaska? How original of Philip!

After I pointed out that Klein has been silent on this issue, he's apparently flipped-flopped on his support of the Nederland City Council and is now riding Jeff Ortiz's coat tails. Jeff was on this issue a week ago - read it for yourself here.

Holograms On TV - If you do not giggle through the story - watch KBTV try and explain the hologram gig. It is too funny. Better yet, go to the real source and check it out for yourself.

On this issue of revisiting Klein's statements, here's one I put off for a while on Saturday, August 18th:
Hilton Kelley - PA News set to run a piece on him we hear. Hmmm.
Still waiting on that one, Philip. Did you hear wrong?

Raise v. $200k

Philip's never misses a chance to throw mud at Jefferson County Judge Ron Walker, since Walker was one of three judges who threw Klein's appeal out in his spurious lawsuit against the PAISD. Read the court's decision for yourself at the link on the sidebar. In this article, Klein criticizes Walker for his pensions:
This is a huge political misstep because it may in fact cause the media to take a little look around - like we did. Judge Walker receives a pension for being a now retired judge. According to records with the state, that amount is close to $95,000 a year. He also receives a state mandated judges stipend of around $12,000. And he is paid for being county judge to the tune of $100k. Meaning his told intake from the taxpayers is just over $200k a year. And that is a conservative number seeing that he may even be getting social security.

Lesson in personal finance for Klein: if one goes to work at 21 and vests in a pension, then goes to work for another company and vests in that pension as well, one gets two pensions. Then, if one gets a new job at age 70, one is also paid a salary. Comparing the DQ Dude's financial background with Ron Walker, I'm glad Judge Walker is handling the finances, not Klein.

Philip argues that elected officials should work for minimum wage, then complains about the quality of those officials who are attracted to public service. Does Philip want competitive wages to attract the best from private industry, or a cheap bargain for his tax buck?

Aug 29, 2007

Katrina

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Philip uses the second anniversary of Hurricane Katrina to rehash old arguments. While Klein mentioned USA Today as a source, his link led to the front page of the USA Today web site. The link to the actual article is here. Perhaps Philip didn't want us to notice his blatant plagiarism:

"The problem? To hear the story is pretty simple. The city goes to the state, the state says go to the feds, and the feds say go to the city."

From the USA Today article:

"If you ask the city, it's the state. If you ask the state, it's the feds. If you ask the feds, it's the city and the state," says Angele Givens, president of the Gentilly Civic Improvement Association"

Philip's argument:

"Looking at New Orleans - you can see - government failed when it hit. Government failed after it hit. Government failed in the recovery. And government is failing today. And as the private sector comes to rebuild - we all need to remember that Government is not the answer to everything in our life - no matter how much of your taxes and fees and trust we give it."
As evidence, Philip mangles USA Today's comparison of rebuilding efforts in Lakewood and Gentilly. Philip's obviously not familiar with New Orleans, but Lakewood Country Club Estates is a very well-to-do "golf community" with multi-million dollar homes surrounding the Lakewood Country Club. According to the USA Today article, approximately 80 percent of those homes have been rebuilt.

On the other hand, Gentilly is a predominantly working-class black neighborhood to the east of uptown. The neighborhood was one of the most-badly damaged subdivisions during Katrina, and less than half of the residents have returned two years later. I'm sure if those residents had the investment portfolios of their neighbors in Lakewood, progress would be more noticeable.

Philip is half-right - the government can't do everything for its citizens. In the case of New Orleans, $116 billion dollars has been appropriated by Congress for Gulf Coast recovery, but most of that was for emergency relief. Only $34 billion has been earmarked for long-term rebuilding, and less than half of that has actually been distributed through the bloated local, state, and federal bureaucracies to fund municipal projects.

But, neither is private business totally the answer. A cursory examination of the real statistics proves this: about 7,900 businesses in southeast Louisiana shut down between the second quarter of 2005 and the fourth quarter of 2006.

Rather, a private business exists for one purpose only: to make a profit. Consider rebuilding efforts in Iraq, where KBR and Haliburton have made a large fortune on no-bid contracts. Examples of abuses are legion; but as one example, Kevin Smoot pleaded guilty last week to dispensing bribes and then lying to federal investigators. Smoot is a KBR subcontractor from Congressman Ted Poe's district in the Woodlands, which hits pretty close to home.

Halliburton, an American company, has made enough money to move its base of operations to the United Arab Emirates, even as it's being investigated in the U.S. for bribery, bid rigging, defrauding the military and illegal profiteering in Iraq. KBR is notorious for overcharging the military and serving contaminated food to our troops for a bigger profit.

As in Iraq, I have no doubt that recovery efforts by the U.S. government in New Orleans are slowed because of rampant corruption in both the public and private sectors. Unfortunately, it doesn't have to be that way - after the 1995 Hanshin earthquake in Kobe, the Japanese government spent about $113 billion dollars on rebuilding those areas. Within 18 months, all of the city's infrastructure, including government buildings, highways, and the Kobe port, had been rebuilt. This was a natural disaster that dwarfs Hurricane Katrina - 4,500 people died in the quake with damages estimated at about $200 billion USD.

Another example closer to home is Orange County. After Hurricane Rita, the Orange County Commissioners and the Temple-Inland plant partnered to rebuild much of the county, particularly those areas around Orange. Both the county government and private business contributed resources - as a result, Orange County recovered much faster.

Here's the bottom line: it's not who's spending the money to rebuild; but rather whether that money is applied fairly and honestly in a timely manner. And the best of all possible worlds happens when both government and private business work together for the common welfare of its citizens and customers.

Aug 28, 2007

Lock It Down

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Mr. Broken Record is stuck on the same subjects ad nauseum:
"Just a matter of time before the Gang of Seven screams that they need to lock down the courthouse and point to another reason - being a guy with a drug warrant running away as fast as he could near the courthouse."
Nothing new here - I've already debunked Klein's position in a previous article from July. Readers will note that Klein never responded to the holes I poked in his argument. He's also missed some significant and more timely developments in Jefferson County.

As examples, here are issues upon which other area bloggers are commenting:
  • Jeff Ortiz covered an issue in Nederland, where the city council is taking money from the EDC for street repairs.
  • Mike Aguilar discussed the future of the PAISD's Woodrow Wilson school and red light cameras in Beaumont and Nederland.
  • Buck Naked discussed himself, Michael Vick, the fugitive who fled the courthouse (from a fresh perspective), and illegal aliens in Jefferson County.

How's that RICO investigation into Lamar University going, Philip?

Aug 26, 2007

Courthouse Shocker

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UPDATE/Monday 8:12: A reader left this comment early this morning:
Liked your rebuttal on Chip Radford, but you left this out. Klein also didn't mention that Radford has a family law mediation certificate. He's done two mediations for CPS and did not get paid a dime. Since the State of Texas doesn't have a problem with Radford, why should Jefferson County? As usual, Klein's going off half-cocked.
Klein's tidbits on Friday contained no relevant content; so, I took the week-end off to keep a date with a couple of largemouth bass. To my readers, I apologize.

I was eagerly waiting for Klein's 100th radio show on Saturday morning, but I gave up after listening to the first 7 or 8 minutes. Since the only thing I heard was static, I figured Klein ran another "Best of Philip Klein," to mark this auspicious occasion. I went to Klein's site this morning to download the program, only to find show 99 is still up.

I did hear most of Buck's show and was again impressed. I was especially interested to find that Philip Klein apparently called Buck last week to get some tips on how Klein could make his show better. Buck, perhaps you should have told Philip to retire and bring back the Wild Hog show that he originally replaced.

In Klein's latest article this afternoon, he continues his libelous attack against Tom Maness by proxy. He comments on Wendell "Chip" Radford, who's apparently been working with kids after his license to practice law was revoked. Typically, Klein manufactures a source:

"'I do not know what goes on down there but having a convicted felon work in the court system with a Judge is simply crazy. Working with juvenile victims is even more crazy," A Department of Justice source told us from Dallas.'"
Klein claims this is more evidence of "SOCIAL BREAKDOWN IN JEFFERSON COUNTY:"
"And last, FELONS WITH JUVENILE VICTIMS? This in itself is so outrageous that the media simply cannot ignore it. IF THE MEDIA IGNORES THIS STORY THEY NOW ANNOUNCE THAT THEY ARE A PART OF THE SOCIAL BREAKDOWN PROBLEM IN JEFFERSON COUNTY TEXAS."
Klein failed to mention that during his tenure with the Jefferson County District Attorney's office, Radford prosecuted most of the cases involving the sexual abuse of children; as such, he's apparently had quite a bit of previous experience dealing with young victims. If for no other reason, the citizens of Jefferson County owe Radford much gratitude for delivering the death sentence for Kinisha Berry. According to the Beaumont Enterprise, he's also a volunteer soccer coach and scoutmaster.

When considering Klein's statement, I think it's important to remember that Philip previously referred to the injured and deceased members of the West Brook Girl's soccer team as "smelly little girls," accused the parents of young sexual abuse victims of taking money in a plea agreement, and routinely refers to students as "young minds full of mush." That last vilification was blatantly stolen from Rush Limbaugh.

Radford plead guilty to one count of conspiracy to commit mail fraud, in what seemed to me to be a witch hunt. Certain aspects of this case have bothered me since I first read about it in the Examiner. Klein has ignored these - for example:

  • According to what I've heard, Helena Labs paid for the defense of those employees who defrauded the company. Why?
  • The attorney for Helena, Joseph Lum, requested probation for Radford. Why?
  • And the most troubling - that Ohio company was never charged with anything, even though they knowingly paid kickbacks to those Helena employees. Why?

I suspect there is a lot more to this case than the U.S. Attorney's office was willing to release. Given the costs and risk associated with mounting a defense against the original 10-count indictment, Radford may have taken the prudent way out with his plea agreement on one conspiracy count.

Klein claims it's a case of politics, and he may well be right. The U.S. Attorney who was responsible for this investigation stepped down under strange circumstances. How much did the Radford prosecution have to do with his exit?

Aug 23, 2007

Another Great Cosmic Irony

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Mr. Sluggo's Top 10 for the week of August 20, 2007:

Imagine that! I'm looking forward to reading Philip's "Blogger Report" tomorrow!

A reader writes

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Another reader posted this comment:



The latest helicopter was acquired from a federal grant not local tax
dollars. If our area did not get the copter it would have went to another area.
That grant money is our tax dollars. If the feds are goig to tax us we might as
well get as much back as possible. The other two copters are old military
surplus copters that the county obtained from the military.


Three

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In his latest article, Philip borrows liberally from a Port Arthur News story. Compare Philip's article this evening with a similar article that ran in the Port Arthur News yesterday.

Philip's source on this background information is quite transparent, but he invented a source in the Port Arthur Chamber of Commerce to attack Willie Bae Lewis:

"We have shown that Willie is beatable. He can be beat at his own game. He has made of fool of himself and one business candidate will win. This is for the future of Port Arthur. We need someone that is not from the old crowd. We need new ideas," said a source with the PACOC.
While Philip plagiarized the Port Arthur News, he missed another story in the Beaumont Enterprise that debunked his allegation concerning the Jefferson County District Attorney's office:
Bewildering election law needs fixing, Orange County DA says

The election code is so confusing and fraught with potential problems that it probably should be amended, said John Kimbrough, Orange County district attorney.

Across Southeast Texas, candidates and officeholders unwittingly were violating state election laws by not filing semi-annual reports because it was not clear to them the reports were required.

Typically, he added, his office receives election code complaints during the campaign season that often are "frivolous allegations."

In Jefferson County, Tom Rugg, assistant district attorney, said he wanted to review the election laws to determine how clear they are.

As of last week, about five Port Arthur residents who ran for office May 12 had not filed required paperwork.

"There are so many offenders out there it is staggering," said Rugg, who added it is a misconception to think the election laws won't be enforced.
Ironically, Fanniece Hawkins filed her final campaign finance report this week, after Klein claimed she was the only candidate in Southeast Texas who had not filed:

On Monday, Fanniece Hawkins filed her final report covering the period from May 12 to Aug. 20.

There was no activity on that report.

In her bid for the mayoral seat, she spent $78,646.91 and raised $32,120. She used $47,500 in loans to make up the difference.
Philip probably missed the Beaumont Enterprise article because he was putting on his makeup. I'm looking forward to reading Klein's comments on this issue, now that I've drawn attention to the issue.

Aug 22, 2007

Munchausen By Politics

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Philip even got the spelling of "Munchausen" correct in today's article, but this can be attributed to his extensive experience with personality disorders.

Klein outlines six points in this article, which he claims is evidence of dysfunction in Jefferson County. Readers will find that I've already debunked five of the six in previous articles; as an example, see my previous posts on increased security for the Jefferson County Courthouse. Philip has never addressed the issues I raised in any of these statements.

However, I've never commented on the issue of the Jefferson County Helicopters. Philip wrote:
"Purchasing Another Helicopter From Homeland Security: In a county of Jefferson County's size, there are now three choppers in service. More than ANY county the size of Jefferson County. "
Not true - as just one example, McClennan County with a population of 226,189, has three helicopters. Jefferson County is actually larger, with a population of 243,189. There are others, but one case is enough to prove Philip's statement is factually incorrect.

Instead, I'll provide another example from Jefferson County, Kentucky, which is more befitting Philip's skewed logic:
Two readers left very good comments over the past two days, which I'll share. I found their arguments quite articulate. On the issue of those holographic stickers, one reader wrote:
Gus, the Holograms were a product of all Emergency management Coordinators in the region. It was well thought out but even the best plans need tweeking, especially after thousands were issued to people that should not have had them. All the coordinators decided on new holographic stickers and they were paid for by funds from the Jefferson County LEPC account and not Tax dollars at a total
cost of $1,830.00. Not $150K as the DQ dude states.
On the issue of a Lamar University football program, another reader wrote:
No offense to anyone at Lamar University, but they should remember why they dumped football in the first place. It was a BIGTIME money-loser.

They only have to look 90 miles west of Beaumont in Houston to see what a major league football program at a commuter school costs.

The University of Houston is very much like LU. The majority of the students are NOT freshman and sophomores who just got out of high school and still have that "school spirit." They are juniors and seniors and graduate students who have jobs, families and responsibilities. When they go home after classes, they are unlikely to return to the campus for sporting events.

When UH had Clyde Drexler and Akeem Olajuan and reached the NCAA finals, they couldn't sell out Hofeinz Pavillion for home games.

When I started going to the University of Houston as a junior in 1994, the Athletic Department's annual deficit (mostly because of football) was $4.5 million. That money was made up partly out of Student Service money that should have gone to help the majority of students rather than the 60 or so that played football.

By the time I graduated in 1996, the annual shortfall was nearly $7 million. A few years later it passed $10 million and now the department won't even acknowledge the true numbers.

UH doesn't draw as many fans for football as local high schools do. That is same scenario that Lamar University saw when it had football.

Unless local philanthropists are willing to bankroll a program that most likely will lose money every year, LU would be better off to, as you noted, distinguish itself in more academic ways.

Just a thought...

Aug 21, 2007

Twofer Tuesday Again

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Philip hasn't commented on the 39 cent tax rate approved by Jefferson County Commissioners yesterday. In my opinion, that rate should have been held to 37 cents, but that's beyond the scope of my blog. Instead, let's consider what Klein actually wrote.

What It Will Take

After offering his opinion on the burning issue of school uniforms in Nederland, Philip tackles another controversial subject today, Lamar University's athletic program.

Those of us who were actually in Southeast Texas at the time remember the Lamar football program with mixed emotions. The school spent way too much money attracting a few star players that never performed to expectations, while academics suffered.

Likewise, Lamar University today still has many problems which need to be addressed. As an example, Philip hasn't offered any recent updates after claiming the school was being investigated by the U.S. Attorney's office for RICO violations. A more realistic example is the Computer Science department which still revamping after a recent move from the Department of Engineering to the College of Arts and Sciences.

Most importantly, LU students are still having problems getting into better graduate schools, such as the University of Texas, Rice, and Texas A&M - that's not because Lamar doesn't have a football team. Instead, the school is finding other ways to distinguish itself, since the real lifeblood of any institution of higher learning is research, not athletics.

My undergraduate degree is from LU - as an alumnus, I'd love to see football added to the athletic department; however I'd rather see an academic environment that's competitive with any other school in the. It's quite revealing of Klein's mentality that he apparently judges the quality of a school by whether they have a football program, but I suppose this is to be expected from someone who flunked out of TT after a couple of semesters.

The Hologram

Philip writes:
"In the first month of the Walker administration, there was a suggestion that thousands of Holograms may be missing and that there needed to be a new reprinting. Such was approved at a cost of over $150k according to media sources."
Klein derides the entire notion of ID cards with holographic seals, which are actually quite common. However, readers will notice that he doesn't mention which county administration actually ordered those badges; instead, he confuses the issue by referring to the Walker administration.

Is Klein's hidden agenda kicking in again?

Aug 19, 2007

A Mean-Spirited Buffoon

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During his radio show on Saturday, Klein accused the parents of those children who were sexually assaulted by Dr. Jeffery Klem of accepting money as a part of the plea agreement. In my opinion, this is reprehensible.

On an unrelated subject, I read an interesting story in the Beaumont Enterprise today, concerning candidates who have failed to file:
As of Thursday, Beaumont had nine candidates who had failed to file their campaign financials.

In Port Arthur, five of the people who ran for office in the May election had not filed all their reports.
Klein claimed two weeks ago that only Fanniece Hawkins had not filed the proper paperwork and that this only occurs in Jefferson County. Once again, Philip doesn't have his facts straight.

In San Antonio, so many candidates were not filing their reports that city officials lobbied the Texas Legislature in 2005 to change the election code to give the elections coordinator authority to terminate campaign treasurer appointments, said Melinda Lopez Uriegas, San Antonio elections coordinator.
None of those cases made it to the Bexar County District Attorney's office. Likewise, Jefferson County ADA Tom Rugg told the Enterprise that the DA's office has not yet received any complaints about the candidates. This is partially corroborated by a message on Klein's Talkback Line:

From: marketing@kinselmotors.com
Sent: Tue, 14 Aug 2007 09:42:32
To: politics@setpoliticalreview.com
Subject: BREAKING NEWS : ANOTHER CRIME COVERED UP BY DA

I filed the initial grievance against Hawkins when she failed to submit her first required financial statement early in the campaign. I received notification from the Texas Ethics Commission that they had received the documents and that a letter was forwarded to Mrs. Hawkins instructing her to return a statement of truth regarding the complaint. At the time of complaint the TEC was backlogged six months. You can reference the fines and penalties by logging on to the Texas Ethics Commission web site. The fines levied do exceed $100, a standard fine is $500 per offense an as high as $5,000, and once negligence of filing is determined the case is then the responsibility of the District Attorney's Office...
Readers will note that this grievance was filed with the Texas Ethics Commission, not the Jefferson County's District Attorney's office. According to this post, only after the Texas Ethics Commission determines negligence occurred is this issue turned over the District Attorney's office.

Isn't it ironic that Klein hasn't accused the Texas Ethics Commission of corruption?

Aug 18, 2007

Tidbits

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UPDATE: I listened to most of Buck Naked's new radio show today and was pleasantly surprised - he's a natural! I noticed that Buck had more calls on his first show than Klein has had in the entire time that Philip's been on the air. I particularly liked LeRoy from Buna, but I suspect this call may have been staged.

Klein's show was the same old thing - two hours of spitting on the microphone and berating listeners. Buck, as a professional radio personality, do you use Lysol to disinfect the microphone before each show? Klein's radio show is supposed to be over at 10:00 a.m., but I've noticed that over the past months, it takes Ronnie Linden at least half-an-hour to get Klein out of the studio.

As I predicted on Monday, Philip Klein never posted last week's radio show where "Kay," argued him into a corner and called him foolish. Was this due to technical difficulties or an idiot on board?

In Tidbits this week, Philip writes:

Sorry we are late. Server and out of town problems.

Question answered: Idiot on board.

Examiner - Set to talk about ticket quotas? Huh? And the rank and file revolt? We love the Rank and File cops. They get it.

Philip rides the coat tails of a story in the Examiner.

Examiner II - Set to tell the Story of Harry Lewis - the DA decider that was suggested by the cops of hiding a fugitive. The entire thing lasted 10 minutes -..... ten minutes too long that is.

Still riding the coat tails of the Examiner.

BISD Crap - Only 236 million reasons why it will fail.

Philip's only 200 million off - The figure is $436 million.

Quote of the Week - Can anyone email us and tell us what this quote means? "There's always gonna be those different ways of how to do this and everybody's gonna have them but we're close to knowing we've gotta come up with one way, and I think whatever ways we come up with now, somebody would prefer, but they can live with whichever way we come up with and I think that's where we are with most of these things at this present time." - Carroll Thomas

Oh. look! Philip has stolen my "Philip Klein Quote of the Week," even though his attorney won't let him read my site. While we're trying to decode cryptic remarks, someone explain this one:

"The DA decider that was suggested by the cops of hiding a fugitive. --Philip Klein

PAISD - Flunked and failed. Hey, how about throwing more money at it? Yes you heard it a 150 million dollar bond issue. You have to just laugh. It never stops.

Philip's two for two - the proposed PAISD bond issue is $190 million dollars, not $150 million.

Commissioners To The Woodshed - This will be good. The Beaumont Enterprise is set to take the Jefferson County Commissioners to the woodshed over the budget. This Sunday our sources tell us. From 95 million (115 million) to 110 million (130 million) in spending.

We'll revisit the issue next week - while I generally avoid expressing personal opinions about issues other than Philip's ignorance and uninformed comments, the Jefferson County tax rate should be held to 37 cents.

Media Wacko Headline Award Of The Week - The kids over at KBTV win this one - "Man Who Terrorized Courthouse Indicted for Escape" Huh? The man who "Terrorized" the courthouse. From the third floor of a secure room, from a closet with a paper gun? Now that is crazy.

Even crazier, that story came from KBMT/Channel 12, not KBTV/Channel 4. Philip is apparently so confused that he doesn't even know what channel he's watching.

Media Lesson - Listen you young media types. Follow the money. IT IS NOT THE TAX RATES IT IS THE SPENDING. Thanks! Go on and put your makeup on now.

I think Philip should share his expertise on applying makeup with those "young media types," as well.

Prostitution Sweep - Another one in the city that got eight girls last night. Good job PD. Now on to the DA's office. Hey, we wonder if they will get a break like county employees husbands get breaks. Na....

Is that sort of like the ticket quota?

Rose Garden - Jena's wedding in the roses not since ..... Nixon? Na...they are all too private.

Actually, the last wedding in the White House Rose Garden was in 1994, between Barbara Boxer's daughter, Nicole, and Hillary Clinton's kid brother, Tony Rodham. Really, Philip, "you gotta talk educated."

Dean - Calm down and stay cool. It is not like we have not been through this before. Try this - take the media - knock it down x2, then divide by 2 and they .... stay cool.

Considering that Klein can't even keep up with which channel he's watching, perhaps the local media should ramp the coverage up a bit.

Sales Tax Holiday - Watch it go crazy. Now think about this - what if we always had a sales tax holiday? We wonder what the people would do with their money?

Since the state sales tax accounts for about 55 percent of all tax revenue, what services should we cut?

Hilton Kelley - PA News set to run a piece on him we hear. Hmmm.

Philip's attacking the messenger, not the message. Klein didn't mention that Valero settled with the Department of Justice and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency this week - the company promises to spend $1.6 million dollars on upgrading pollution controls at the plant in Port Arthur. Klein didn't comment on Valero's final report on the toxic release earlier this week, either.

13,000 Is Over - The stock market went under 13,000 and....oh....never mind.

Compare with Philip's statement from Friday, July 27th, "Stock market - Bad day only. Watch it come back."

Congress Poll Numbers - Only 13%. Heck - our numbers are higher than that.

I seriously doubt that.

Philip Klein Quote of the Week:

  • The DA decider that was suggested by the cops of hiding a fugitive.

Aug 16, 2007

Another Phlashback from Philip Klein

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Klein hasn't published anything since yesterday afternoon - I'm sure many of us were hoping for an urgent update, labeled "BREAKING NEWS," on that developing story of school uniforms in Nederland.

Since I'm all dressed up with nowhere to go this evening, I'll revisit a statement from Klein's Tidbits on July 27, 2007:

"Global Warming - On of the coolest summers in the history of SET. Interesting. "
The NOAA Climatic Data Center published the figures for July this week. Here are some highlights, including the headline:
RECORD WARMTH IN WESTERN U.S. IN JULY, DROUGHT SEVERITY WORSENED, GLOBAL TEMPERATURE 7th WARMEST FOR JULY

Twenty states from the eastern seaboard to the Midwest and southern Plains were cooler than average for the month. Florida was the only state warmer-than-average east of the Mississippi.

The persistent atmospheric pattern that brought cooler-than-average temperatures to the East contributed to record and near-record warmth in the West. It was the warmest July on record in Montana, Wyoming and Idaho. Boise, Idaho's average high temperature of 98.6°F (37°C) was more than 9°F (5°C) above average, and made July 2007 its warmest month ever.

Aug 15, 2007

First, a Flashback for Philip

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Revisiting the Valero incident on July 28, 2007, readers will remember that Philip Klein claimed last week that no toxic substances were released. According to Klein, the incident was harmless and resulted from a "spill that stunk like a rotten egg."

Philip proffered the opinion that over 30 people were transported to St. Mary's Hospital because they wanted an ambulance ride in a "high-crime" area (Philip's code words for "predominantly African-American").

Valero released their own report yesterday, which showed this wasn't a spill at all. Instead this was an unauthorized airborne emission of 19 different substances, six of which were considered highly toxic by the TCEQ. Those toxins included:

  • 12,113 pounds of butane
  • 15,683 pounds of propane
  • 5,895 pounds of isopentane
  • 6,058 pounds of pentane
The leak lasted for over 6 hours, yet current regulations prohibit releasing more than 8.46 pounds per hour of each substance.

Most importantly, 619 pounds of hydrogen sulfide were leaked,. This is deadly - it's fatal in concentrations of only 500 parts per million. Current TCEQ regulations allow absolutely no emissions of hydrogen sulfide. Fortunately, it's easy to identify, since it smells like rotten eggs.

Remember the fallacy I've repeatedly pointed out in Klein's logic - he's attacking the messenger, not the message.

Political Outrage

Philip Klein continues his attack on the Jefferson County District Attorney's office in this article:


"The fire is now lit in Jefferson County and the outrage is being heard in the backrooms of the courthouse when Dr. Jeff Kelm got a walk from being labeled a sex offender and even more sickening - got 10 years probation for doing things to little kids. And the DA's office signed off on it."
I'm pretty sure that Klein meant Dr. Jeff Klem, not Kelm. Fom Klein's language on his so-called "radio show," I thought he had a strong command of most four-letter words.

What Klein didn't mention is that the victims' parents also signed off on the agreement. Since this is an intensely personal issue and I'm not a party to all of the details of this sordid matter, I defer to the parents' opinion that justice was served in this plea agreement.



This Is The Answer?

And the question is: can't Philip find something of more political significance on which to comment than school uniforms in Nederland?

Here's a suggestion - the city of Nederland has postponed a vote on the new budget, because Chief Darryl Bush is requesting three new police officers. Considering the crime in Nederland, Chief Bush needs all the help he can get. The issue could force a rollback election on tax rates. Isn't it ironic that Klein hasn't commented on this, but instead chooses to comment on school uniforms?

Two public hearings will be held tomorrow night and again on Monday night. Readers who are interested in more information should check out Jeff Ortiz' blog. The link is on the sidebar - Jeff's got the real scoop on Nederland politics, not Klein.

Aug 14, 2007

Another Crime

0 comments
In this article, Philip attacks Jefferson County District Attorney Tom Maness again:

"The Southeast Texas Political Review has learned that former political candidate Fanniece Hawkins has failed and refused to file her final campaign finance report being in direct violation of campaign contribution reports."

"Adding insult to injury, the Jefferson County District Attorney's office not only knows about, has received complaints about it, has investigated it, has made contact with Hawkins, but is refusing to acknowledge complaints or file charges on Hawkins. "
Philip manufactures several sources as evidence:
"...According to the Texas Ethics Commission, the violations are 'outrageous and out of line' but they have no control but to investigate it and turn the information over to the local DA."
Klein's statement is a blatant lie. The Texas Ethics Commission can impose civil penalties over cases in which it has jurisdiction, such as failing to file campaign contribution reports:
§ 571.173. CIVIL PENALTY FOR DELAY OR VIOLATION. The commission may impose a civil penalty of not more than $5,000 or triple the amount at issue under a law administered and enforced by the commission, whichever amount is more, for a delay in complying with a commission order or for a violation of a law administered and enforced by the commission.
In addition to criminal complaints, any citizen may file a criminal complaint with the district attorney, a civil complaint with the Texas Ethics Commission, or a civil action against a candidate.If Klein feels strongly about this issue, I wonder why he hasn't filed any criminal or civil complaints with the appropriate entities.

NOTE TO PHILIP: Perhaps you should explain to our readers about your personal agenda against Tom Maness. I have a copy of your original "edtitorial" on the issue, if you've somehow misplaced the original.

Article Statistics:


  • Manufactured Sources: 5 (Jackpot!)

  • Personal Agendas: 1

  • Factual errors: 2

  • Word count: 644

  • Paragraphs: 23

  • Sentence Fragments: 8

  • Mispunctuation: 5

  • Spelling Errors: 3

Aug 12, 2007

110 (130)

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Philip comments on the proposed Jefferson County budget for 2007-2008:

Anyway - we are looking at a $110 ($130) million dollar budget. And we were wrong when we predicted a $130 million dollar budget (no we were not). So please accept our apologies (no - we were right).
Philip's reasoning behind this gibberish and double talk:
"Now, we are going to deal with that little hidden number nobody wants to talk about. That is the "rainy day fund" The twenty million in the can that "might be needed in case of emergency." Now we all ask ourselves - what could be an emergency? Like maybe emergency spending in case of a hurricane? Okay? Or maybe a police car or two? Or maybe a strategy of stashing some cash for more pork projects?"
Philip is again short on facts and long on error - this issue of the general fund balance has been discussed quite a bit, particularly regarding the impact of HB 3732. Philip has previously commented on the bill in a poor attempt at portraying this as a partisan issue; typically, he missed the real ramifications.

The bill was initially intended to allow tax incentives for utility companies who adopt cleaner technologies in the production of electricity. However, language was introduced in the bill's final passage that may allow refineries to take advantage of those tax breaks. These abatements supersede any local agreements, so Jefferson County would be among those counties most affected. All provisions of the bill will not take effect until next year - about halfway through the current budget.

Foresight in budgetary planning for a contingency such as this seems only prudent to me. Klein frequently argues that government should run like business, yet most successful businesses have surpluses stashed away for emergencies. Perhaps this is one reason why a certain Dairy Queen in Nederland went bust during the boom years of the '90s.

Here are two other ironies I've noticed in Klein's inconsistent arguments:

  • Klein again refers to Ford Park as an example of pork; but in previous articles, he steadfastly defends the person responsible for this albatross: former Jefferson County Judge Carl Griffith.
  • Klein castigates County Judge Ron Walker, but failed to mention that Walker has already refused to accept any raise. Since Judge Walker was on the panel of judges who threw Klein's appeal out in 2002, I wonder if this is another example of his hidden agendas?

Klein's hysteria over this year's budget has been pervasive, more so than year's past. Last week, he wrote:

"Well, the average price of property and taxable items has gone through the roof. To the tune of anywhere between 23% to 63% according the Jefferson County Appraisal District."

I couldn't find those figures anywhere on the JCAD's website, but I did determine that this year's certified tax roll shows net taxable property values of $18.6 billion, which is roughly a 12 percent increase from last year's $16.5 billion. That final figure dropped by 4 percent after protest hearings.

Under current law, increases in residential appraisals are capped at 10 percent annually. Even at this rate, taxes can double in about eight years as the taxable value of a home catches up to market value. However, if paying those taxes on increased property values becomes a real burden, perhaps smart consumers should cash in and reinvest their windfall, rather than complaining about escalating property taxes. This is the essence of a free market in a capitalistic society. Note that appraisals on commercial properties are not capped, which may the added 2 percent increase in taxable values from 2006 to 2007.

Truthfully, this is a subject that deserves ongoing debate. However, the subject should be debated with real facts, not manufactured, misinformed, or hysterical fallacies such as Klein's.

On a related subject, Philip hasn't posted his most recent radio show. I suspect this may have something to do with his caller, "Kay," who argued Philip into a corner and then called him a fool. Thanks, Kay - I'm looking forward to PRK's statement about "technical difficulties."

Instead, the show from August 4th is still up as I write this. Check out the last hour, where Klein read a posting to his Talk Back Line. The author called Klein a "Wacko," which prompted a 10-minute meltdown from Philip. A few of the comments follow:

"What Wacko ideas are you talking about? Someone tell me where I'm wacko?"

"Is it wacko, and that's wrong, that a, a, 25 percent raise to a person who doesn't show up to work but 30 hours a week, but I'm wrong?"
What 25 percent raise is Klein talking about? Certainly not the proposed 9 percent raise for the county's elected officials in upcoming fiscal year.
"That we need to shut down our county government where we can't speak without filling out a form and getting it approved a week before before we even know what's on the agenda is wrong and I'm wacko?"
The origin of that rule has to do with an unsuccessful candidate for county judge and his local political party who abused the privilege during the last year's campaign. They stacked the comment time with supporters to generate free publicity from the local media. I don't like this rule either, but I think Klein is a wacko for defending those who abused that privilege.

"That putting up barriers between us and the government's, between us and our house, our government house, is wrong? and I'm Wacko? "
See the above comment, but I would gladly pay for a round-trip coach class seat to D.C. for Philip if he would agree to deliver one of his rants from the visitors gallery while the U.S. House of Representatives is in session. Bail, however, is not included in this one-time offer.

Like many people with severe personality disorders, Philip is always right, but everyone else is always wrong:
"I suggest to all of you that I'm not the one that's wacko - that maybe I'm the only one that's thinking clear. Maybe you have been brainwarshed [SIC] so bad by our government, you have lived in this nanny state so long, it's an illness that's taken over. "
Klein's arrogance and his feeling about fellow bloggers in Southeast Texas was exposed in this comment:
"I do a bloggers round table in here with people that love to ride my back on my radio show and think they're something, I really do, and they're great guys, I love them to death, but it's the mentality, it's their mentality where they think they're something that they're not."

Aug 10, 2007

Tidbits

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Philip Klein's tidbits this week contained no relevant content. For instance, here were some of the high points:

"Bush Poll Numbers - Going up. "
In the stock market, they call that a dead cat bounce.

Gas Prices - Coming down.
According to one of Klein's past tidbits, this is a sure sign that the economy is in trouble.

Crime - Still High
After reading this, I had to wonder how Klein's investigation into that mugging in Central Mall is going (see sidebar) - any suspects yet, Philip?

The Review - Set records this week for readership. Over 10k.
Only 26 people are actually reading the messages on Klein's Talkback Line, but he claims 10,000 unique visitors to his website this week. Philip's counters are easily manipulated - readers will notice that every time a page is visited, the counter is incremented by one; so, even though only one person has visited two pages, the counter on every page shows two new visitors. Try it for yourself and see.

He's also using Microsoft Front Page to edit his site; the Front Page Extension that controls the numbers can be set by whomever edits the site. From watching Klein's site carefully, I've noticed the count generally advances from several hundred to over a thousand whenever Philip posts a new article. Gotcha!

I've mentioned Klein's so-called investigation into the Central Mall mugging, which now seems forgotten. He also failed to follow up on a promise to take attendance at the Jefferson County Courthouse on Friday afternoons.


Philip Klein's Quote of the Week:

"According to our sources and some media reports, the building will have only one entrance for the public and seven entrances and exits for the public."

Finally, some questions from readers. Buck Naked responded to my open letter (see below). He wrote:
He/she did make the comment that i was being I guess a mouth piece for Klein which is far from. I myself have met Klien one time on the radio show and have exchanged emails maybe two or three. I myself try to stay neutral and have fun with everyone.

Buck, you need to reread my statement:

You can make up your own mind about whether this is truth, just as I've made up my own mind that you're raising these questions on your own, rather than acting under Klein's direction because he can't defend his own ludicrous positions.

Another reader wrote:

I was reading older posts and was wondering what you were meaning by saying,

Hhhmmm - the only hysteria I see is centered in Nederland. I advise the rest of you to stay on top of conditions as they develop - I hope no one gets caught on the side of the road with an empty tank of gas again.
That was a flippant response to Klein's statement that everyone is "freaking out" over a recent tropical storm. Klein lives in Nederland, so hopefully you'll see the connection. This was not intended to denigrate the citizenry of Nederland.

Open Letter to Buck A. Naked

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Buck Naked mentioned my little blog on his site this week (see his link on the sidebar):

Now onto another story…Local Blogger Site, Decline of Klein as you know is known in this area for their fact checking and such daily on Philip Kliens Top Story. Now most of the time the author of DOK is fast too do this on the same day as Philip posts his story. But this was not the case with the story Philip wrote about Hilton and his company. Then when he/her did do it if you notice it was not as extensive as it usually is. Question, is this due to Philip being on the money? Or is it due to the writer of DOK being close to Hilton and possibly from PA themselves? Just some thoughts to ponder, maybe DOKS will answer these questions. Well enough for today been a long one.

Buck;

From one anonymous blogger to another, thanks for reading; although, I must be the only person in Jefferson County that doesn't know your real identity. Regarding my blog, it's actually called "Operation Kleinwatch." When specifically referring to me, my nom de plume of Gus Pillsbury works just fine.

I appreciate your compliment on my efforts at posting new articles in a timely manner. Depending upon my weekly schedule, two or more days may go by before I can get around to addressing Philip's articles. If I have to research something that Klein has posted, this may also affect how fast an article is posted.

Regarding Klein's Hilton Kelley story, you'll notice that I posted fact checks on three articles at once, dating back to Tuesday, due to my schedule this week. Specific to Klein's story on Hilton Kelley, I posted that within 48 hours of Klein's publication.

Furthermore, I outlined the issue as I see it quite succinctly: The attack on CIDA is based on fallacious logic - whether they've paid their taxes on time, whether they're convicted felons, or Klein's inability to document Hilton Kelley's Eagle Scout Award has nothing to do with the safety of those residents who live near the Valero refinery or the incineration of VX hydrolysate in a safe manner. For more information on ad hominem fallacies, read this article.

Since you've questioned my objectivity in this matter, I'll point out that I've never met Kelley, nor do have anything whatsoever to do with CIDA, Inc. Whether I'm from Port Arthur is not germane to this issue; but, for the second (and last) time, I don't know Beverly or Carl Parker and have nothing to do with them. I'm also not a lawyer, have nothing to do with the Gilliam suit against Klein, and the opinions expressed here are purely my own.

You can make up your own mind about whether this is truth, just as I've made up my own mind that you're raising these questions on your own, rather than acting under Klein's direction because he can't defend his own ludicrous positions. I believe you're quite gullible, however, for taking Klein at face value.

I think much of Klein's article is simply hysteria. For example he specifically mentioned Kelley's annual auto rental expenses while traveling. In my own experience, I visited Los Angeles last month and my auto rental fee for seven days came to approximately $1100. This evidence is anecdotal, but considering the cost of renting cars these days, $5530 in one year is negligible for someone who travels regularly. Likewise, paying $10,777 for office rent, utilities, and maintenance for CIDA seems rather frugal in my opinion. Since you seem to accept Klein's reasoning without question, perhaps Philip should tell us how much he pays annually for office space as a point of reference.

Concerning Klein's allegations that principals in CIDA, Inc., have records, I've not actually researched those charges, so I don't know if his information is true. Since he posted those tax returns of CIDA, I wonder why Klein didn't post documentation of those legal convictions as well.

Reiterating the bottom line, even if Klein's allegations are true, this does not negate CIDA's arguments. Many of this country's founding fathers were gun-runners, smugglers, and seditionists. I don't agree with bootlegging, but I passionately support their notion of a democratic republic with certain inalienable rights for all citizens.

Thanks for writing, Buck.

Old Tidbits

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10:10 AM - Philip hasn't posted his weekly Tidbits yet, so here's a few oldies, but goodies, from Friday, July 27th:

"Stock market - Bad day only. Watch it come back."

Maybe he should have said "Bad month only."
"Astro Nuts - Drinking before flight? What up?"
After reading the initial report, I noticed that the two incidents concerning intoxicated astronauts in flight were not properly cited. This week, NASA disputed the report. Philip engaged in name-calling without considering all of the facts. Philip Klein - true patriot and idiot blogger.

To be continued.

Aug 9, 2007

0 comments
Spinmister

I think Klein meant "Spinmeister," since there is no such thing as a "Spinmister." In this article, he discounts a possible tax cut for Jefferson County citizens:
"Let us be clear - there will be no tax cut. None. Here is how they will spin it off to you the taxpayer."
His point:
"You - the taxpayer - will be paying more. Why? Well, the average price of property and taxable items has gone through the roof. To the tune of anywhere between 23% to 63% according the Jefferson County Appraisal District. Thus the mad rush while the money is there to get it while you can."
Klein is comparing apples and oranges - as Philip notes, those appraisals are based directly on the property's market value, not an arbitrary value set by Jefferson County Commissioners. Furthermore, a homeowner can appeal this appraised value to the appraisal district. This if easy to do if one can document the market value of other comparable homes in the neighborhood.

Philip has used escalating property values in the past as evidence that our economy is booming, so where's the spin?

Article Statistics:
  • Patronizing comments: 1
  • Name calling: 1
  • Logical fallacies: 1
  • Sentence fragments: 4
  • Mispunctuations: 1
  • Word Count: 585
  • Paragraphs: 15
  • Spelling errors: 2

IRS

In this article, Klein continues his hatchet job on CIDA, Inc., apparently two of the corporation's officers have records. He's also published their most recent income tax returns; so, at least in this case, politics does indeed make strange bedfellows.

As I've pointed out before, this is a logical fallacy; specifically, an ad hominem argument. Klein is attacking CIDA, but none of their criminal convictions have anything to do with the issue that Klein raised earlier this week: how much is Valero doing to ensure the safety of those residents who live across the parking lot from their Port Arthur Refinery?

If Klein were truly unbiased, he'd research the number of times that the Valero/Port Arthur refinery has been out of compliance with federal air safety standards over the past year with equal fervor. That information isn't hard to find.

Article Statistics:

  • Overt bias: 1
  • Logical fallacies: 2
  • Sentence fragments: 2
  • Mispunctuations: 7
  • Word Count: 1,035
  • Paragraphs: 30
  • Spelling Errors: 4

Lockdown!

I waited before posting any comment on this story, because Philip will sometimes go back and change his articles after I point out errors. However, this mistake is one to remember:

"According to our sources and some media reports, the building will have only one entrance for the public and seven entrances and exits for the public. "

Okay, the public will have a total of eight entrances to the Courthouse. Philip also asks:

"We ask the question - why are our political officials scared of our citizens? Hmmm? "

Perhaps Philip should save his pennies and visit D.C., then report back to us about this concept of building security and scared "political officials."

Article Statistics:

  • Rank confusion: 1
  • Overt Bias: 1
  • Manufactured sources: 1
  • Mispunctuations: 1
  • Sentence fragments: 6
  • Word Count: 286
  • Paragraphs: 1
  • Spelling errors: 1

Aug 8, 2007

Valero's Mistake

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In this article, Klein misses the bigger question and instead, resorts to name-calling, based on Philip's inability to find Hilton Kelley's Boy Scout Records:
"It gave what we perceives to be a Con Artist like Hilton Kelley a chance to get up on the tube and do their dance. "
Philip is learning that he can't call someone a crook or in this case, a con artist, without qualifying the statement. For instance, I perceive Klein to be bigoted, dishonest, emotionally unstable, simple-minded, and a chronic liar, but that's just my opinion.

Most importantly, Klein is more concerned about melodrama and defamatory statements than looking at the real issue being raised by residents.

While company officials were apologetic about the fire on Sunday, the residents were angry that they received no warning after the refinery released a gas vapor cloud on July 28th. The meeting turned raucous only after officials failed to address those concerns. Klein dodges this issue entirely and instead resorted to more personal attacks instead of a logical argument:
"But Kelley, and the mind set of the citizens of Port Arthur feel that they are owed."
Philip trivializes this issue, simply because he's too dense to see both sides. Klein's bias against the residents of Southeast Texas is obvious when he alleges:
"In a right move, to which would the right thing to do anywhere in the USA other than Port Arthur."
In reality, anger at town hall meetings is fairly common. On the same night, U.S. Rep. Paul Kanjorski was shouted off the stage at another town hall meeting in Scranton, New York. I think Philip is merely exploiting an emotional issue for self-aggrandizement.

Article Statistics:
  • Name-calling: 5
  • Logical fallacies: 2
  • Overt bias: 1
  • Sentence fragments: 1
  • Mispunctuations: 3
  • Words: 556
  • Paragraphs: 18
  • Spelling errors: 1

Aug 6, 2007

Philip's Statement of KOLE Sale

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UPDATE: Last night, I listened to the first hour of Philip's radio show on Saturday, which is available for download on his site. He spent a substantial part of this hour unsuccessfully refuting an earlier posting of mine, where I compared the Montgomery County tax rate with that of Jefferson County.

In this article, I pointed out that lower tax rates are not a partisan issue - I compared tax rates in Montgomery County, a primarily Republican county, with Jefferson County, a primarily Democratic county. I also showed that Jefferson County's rate is in the bottom 40 percent of all 254 counties in Texas.

Philip's central argument was that the per capita tax burden is lower in Montgomery County than Jefferson County. He spent much time incorrectly defining what per capita meant, but never revealed the figures for the two counties.

Typically, Klein is either misinformed or confused. Here are the numbers:

Jefferson County
  • 2006-2007 Budget: $95,000,000
  • 2006 Population: 243,914
  • Per Capita Tax Burden: 389.48
  • Tax Rate: .425 per 100 dollars valuation
Montgomery County
  • 2006-2007 Budget: $158,000,000
  • 2006 Population: 398,290
  • Per Capita Tax Burden: 396.67
  • Tax Rate: .49 per 100 dollars valuation
ORIGINAL ARTICLE: In today's article, Philip laments the passing of the only broadcast station in the world that would give him a radio show. The station was sold to Birach Broadcasting, according to a posting on Trog today.

In the past, Klien has claimed he's been offered shows on stations in Dallas and Houston, but if the rumors are true concerning his dismal ratings, I suspect that Klein may really believe his days on the radio are numbered:

"We will stay with KOLE as long as [the new owners] will have us."
I researched the new owners on Wikipedia here, and eventually found one of their radio stations that broadcast on the web:

According to Wikipedia, the "station's programming is primarily in Punjabi and Urdu, with some Serbian, Macedonian and Caribbean programming on weekends." Philip should fit in quite well.

Article Statistics:

  • Hidden Agendas: 1
  • Grammatical trainwrecks: 1
  • Mispunctuation: 2
  • Words: 242
  • Paragraphs: 7
  • Spelling Errors: 1

Aug 5, 2007

Foe Foe Three

0 comments
Philip's article today contains a racially-charged title, manufactured sources, factual mistakes, and logical fallacies galore, as he attempts to analyze a possible BISD Bond Election:

Issue one - is the leadership of the BISD. Many in the political and business community simply do not trust the leadership being the leader Carrol Thomas. "There has been way to much mismanagement and scandal at BISD," said one business leader we spoke with this past week.
Typically, Klein's negative focus is on his preoccupation with scandal and underwear-sniffing, but the BISD Bond Advisory Committee is composed of a wide variety of community leaders across the political spectrum. When Dr. David Tuescher, Roberto Flores, Aubrey Webb, and Mark Viator are on the same side of an issue, perhaps certain self-proclaimed political analysts should consider their impact more seriously.

Issue two - South Park High School (what is left anyway). This is one of the last monuments of Beaumont's past.
This situation is analogous to one in which Lamar University found itself during the early 70s. The school had the title to the W.W. Kyle House, a legendary mansion where Presidents and notable personalities of the day, such as Jenny Lind and Harry Houdini, stayed when visiting Beaumont.

The home was an architectural wonder - I still remember the view of its spires and 3rd floor billiards room quite well from across the street at Hotel Dieu. The original "Dubya's" tastes were also evident in the Kyle Opera House (also gone) and the Kyle Block in downtown Beaumont. The original buildings on this block are still there, and are now considered the best examples of Zig Zag architecture in Texas.

Unfortunately, the estimated rate of return did not mitigate the extensive costs associated with the renovation and upkeep of this landmark, hence the home was demolished. To me, this seems to be a simple business decision, but Philip must believe that the emotional value of SPHS is worth more than the most efficient use of taxpayer money.

Readers should note I'm biased on this subject of defunct Beaumont schools - the Trojans never lost a game to PNG.

Issue three - The money. When you hear of places like Houston Independent School District and Dallas ISD talk about bond issues for their schools, they are even lower than BISD.
Philip is completely misinformed, as we've come to expect with any complex issue. Beaumont passed a $14 million dollar bond issue in 2000, and now seeks another bond issue of $443 million.

In contrast, the Houston ISD passed a $678 million package in 1998, an $808.6 million package in 2002 and could vote on another $805 million package in November. In 2002, the Dallas ISD passed two bond issues of $1.3 billion (that's 9 zeroes, Philip) and another issue of $38.7 million. When considering these totals, Beaumont's potential bond issue seems like small potatoes. But, paraphrasing a famous Republican, "Take a million here and a million there, pretty soon it's start to add up to real money."

I'm not sure whether the citizens of Beaumont will pass this issue, but the only issue that I think will affect the final outcome is whether those citizens are willing to pay somewhat higher taxes for a quality education for students. The district has an annual growth of 20 percent to 30 percent, but currently can't keep up with the demands of educating future citizens faced with a new global economy, new business models and new technologies amid shrinking resources.

Philip predicts the issue will fail - we'll revisit his prediction in November if the issue makes it to the polling booths.

Article Statistics:

  • Manufactured quotes: 4 (note that Philip wasn't clear whether he talked to one "high ranking COC member" or multiple "source[s] inside the Beaumont COC.")
  • Race-baiting: 2
  • Factual Errors: 1
  • Logical Fallacies: 1
  • Mispunctuations: 7
  • Sentence Fragments: 6
  • Words: 670
  • Paragraphs: 19
  • Spelling Errors: 5
And this special mention of an outstanding grammatical train wreck:

"And those to whom attended it are the ones that make the money and policy right now."

Aug 3, 2007

Tidbits

0 comments
I left the previous posting up for a couple of days, because I wanted to ensure that Philip's accusations were adequately addressed (see below). I ignored a couple of his stories, but his content warranted little comment.

For instance, his attack on the residents of Carver Terrace Apartment is thinly-guised race-baiting. Likewise, his bizarre allegation on a conspiracy behind the Jefferson County Commissioners' vote on raises for Sheriff's Deputies doesn't mention that collusion on a vote such as this is a serious legal matter. Rather, I think the 3-2 vote means that each commissioner voted according to his own conscience - Domingue was particularly outspoken on his reasons for voting against the raises, according to the local media reports.

Friday is Philip's so-called "Tidbits," where he trivializes issues about which he knows absolutely nothing to appear erudite. Here's my take on Philip's take:

4-4-3 : Odds Makers - Odds makers have the opening bets on the BISD Bond Issue passing at ... 500-1. Watch this thing go down in flames.
To be continued!
Bridge Over Trouble Waters - Media in overload. Could it happen to you! Nanny!!!! Come help!!!!
Consider that the I-35 West bridge in Minneapolis was one of over 70,000 bridges rated structurally deficient and still in use. Also consider that in Jefferson County, 9 bridges are considered structurally deficient. Isn't the upkeep of roads and bridges the only function of government that Klein approves? And, if Klein doesn't trust the government in any other matters, why does he trust them here?
Sean Penn - Uh...no we do not think so. Not at all Mr. Penn. Never ever will we spend one dime on your movie. Case closed.
Today's Double Jeopardy Answer: What do Harry Potter and Sean Penn have in common?

McCain Gone - Our DC friends say that McCain's show is over.

Since Klein has predicted that "McCain's show is over," I suspect McCain will win the Republican nomination. To be revisited.
Obama No Nukes - Great - that is what we need. A leader that does not want any Nukes. Here is an idea - lets just all go talk! We can talk out our problems. And if that does not work let's give them money. That is the ticket!

Instead, let's elect Fred Thompson, who once worked as a lobbyist for the abortion industry - we can kill everyone without consideration of race, age, or gender.
Everyone PANIC! - There is a tropical wave, depression and / or storm!!! Freak OUT!
Hhmmm - the only hysteria I see is centered in Nederland. I advise the rest of you to stay on top of conditions as they develop - I hope no one gets caught on the side of the road with an empty tank of gas again.
KFDM Goes Automatic - That is nice. So what?
I agree - isn't this the same thing the oil, auto, and almost all other industries are going through?
Marvin Zindler - Grew up watching him over here at the Review. We will miss him. A great guy....from the old school.
Has anyone else noticed that the only time Philip has something good to say about Democrats is when they die?
Go Horns ! - Go to jail that is. A second player to the pokey?
What does this have to with politics? Since his radio show failed miserably from what I've read, maybe Philip is hoping for a part-time job as a sportscaster?
How Do You ? - The question is this - how do you get your life back? Ozen Coach not guilty. DA knew it. How does this man get his life back?
Philip doesn't offer any evidence that the "DA knew it." More importantly, wasn't this decision made by a grand jury and not the District Attorney?
Building On The Bomb - Check it out. PAISD is building the big one on the bomb.
Check what out? Maybe I missed this one, but I have no idea what Klein is referencing. Does anyone else?
Passing Gas - Gas station owners are p--d that they are being broadcast by the Government for ripping off - well okay - not pumping a gallon of gas correctly. It is the machines fault!
So, who's in charge of keeping the machines in proper working order?
Price of Gas - When you buy a gallon of gas - you want a gallon of gas for $2.78? As the price goes up - so does consumer wants and needs.
While the discretionary income for consumers goes down. Philip's failure to comprehend simple economics never ceases to amaze me.

In Philip's Blogger Report, he references Operation Kleinwatch:

Sadly, the two sites they mentioned in trying to explain why we were wrong - are - well - you just look around on the site and you can see who owns it.
As I've pointed out, it's certainly not any attorney or Beverly and Carl Parker. Where's that subpoena, Philip? This brings me to the next topic:

Administrivia:

I deeply apologize to the other local bloggers who've provided links from their site to mine - I haven't spent much time looking beyond Klein before this. However, I'm happy to provide reciprocal links. If I've missed you, just leave a comment at the link on the sidebar.

The Philip Klein Quote of the Week:

"...The DOKS (Parkers) have a goal in mind - which is to effect a lawsuit that is pending and to try and discredit me...they are (how you say) a bunch of whinny ...... well you fill in the blank."

If this blog were truly meant to "effect" [sic] a lawsuit, then my mission has apparently been accomplished with Klein's repeated allegation over the Parkers. Happy Times, indeed.