Feb 29, 2008

Update Ad Nauseum

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According to Philip R. Klein

...on Sunday or Monday, Hillary Clinton will arrive.

That statement soon changed to this:

[Hillary] Clinton is tentatively coming "sometime over the weekend" and most likely "on Saturday."

After it was announced that Bill Clinton, not Hillary, would visit Southeast Texas, Philip wrote:

The kicker is [Bill] Clinton is coming to a Baptist Church - a black one that is. It should be interesting at best.

According to the Beaumont Enterprise: this evening:

Sen. Hillary Clinton will stump in Beaumont on Monday, a Clinton campaign spokesperson has confirmed. A Sunday appearance by former president Bill Clinton to stump on his wife's behalf--which would have been his second in Beaumont--has been canceled, the campaign said.

It seems to me that the Clinton campaign doesn't even know what they're doing from day to day.  If elected, I hope President Hillary doesn't run the country this way.

Most importantly, is this an example of Philip's informed source or a lucky guess[es]?

Nitwit Tidbits

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Philip R. Klein Writes:

What We Hear - "We heard there was a huge turnout and he stayed around the area for about 5 hours. We have Bill coming back in but we may have a surprise meeting him while he is in East Texas."

A few other things that Philip "heard" this week:

...on Sunday or Monday, Hillary Clinton will arrive.

That statement soon changed to this:

[Hillary] Clinton is tentatively coming "sometime over the weekend" and most likely "on Saturday."

Then, Philip broke the news that people were actually living in the Jefferson Theater:

...Jefferson Theater. Population 1,900.

Of course, Philip's sources had Obama's itinerary:

[Obama] will do a meet and greet at the airport for 15 minutes and then motorcade to the Beaumont Civic Center. After that we "might" do a couple of stops at a local school or possibly Lamar University.

And a personal  endorsement for Bugs Coe:

And the cops? They are solid behind Henry Coe.

But, here's my personal favorite:

"...the sinking Pleasure Island. THE BIGGEST PORT PROJECT IN TEXAS!

What about that Question of the Week, Philip?

Meanwhile, back at Nitwit Tidbits:

The Numbers From Law Enforcement (Not Local) - Bill Clinton 700, Obama 3,000+.

How does Philip reconcile this statement with his previous observation that:

This is Hillary country.

Polling - Hillary is down by 3% in overall average. We still say she might pull it out.

From Real Clear Politics, the weekly average of all the national polls:

    • Obama:  48.6
    • Clinton: 41.1

"It's a numbers game," and Philip has to take his pants off to count to 21.

SET Delegate Count - 5-4 as we hear it. But cannot be decided until caucus time.

See above for other things Philip has "heard" this week.  We'll revisit next Wednesday.

Check This Out From The Press :

Philip didn't identify which "press" he was reading when he came across that picture.  I found it:

 

Media - Went live and everything! Wow. Best coverage? You tell us!

Not sure, but the Worst Coverage Award goes to the Southeast Texas Political Review.

FBI v. Clements [sic] - Ya know.....there is a thing call the right to remain silent. Even if you have not done ANYTHING. You have the right to remain silent. Roger.....

Did Philip mean Roger Clemens? I love Philip's late night postings! The question is, did Philip write this before or after he passed out in front of his computer?

Feb 28, 2008

Update on the Update on Philip's Update

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Philip R. Klein wrote on Tuesday:

According to our sources - [Hillary] Clinton is tentatively coming "sometime over the weekend" and most likely "on Saturday." According to the Clinton camp in Houston they are going to watch closely all of the stops that Osama is making. If they feel that Obama has made serious headway into democratic strongholds, "she will come to those areas to solid up her support."

Not true, according to my sources:

The rumor that Hillary Clinton would be in Beaumont this weekend hasn't panned out, but her campaign is sending would-be First Lady, possible future Supreme Court Justice and shadow president Bill Clinton back for seconds.

Whether it's a matter of getting the last political word or he just forgot something, Southeast Texas will get a second helping of Wild Bill at an undisclosed time and place on Sunday.

I'm not sure that was ever really a rumor; rather, I think it was only speculation and manufactured sources from the area's biggest wingnut. 

I've been reading The Bayou blog for a while now, so I've put a link to Gator's blog on the sidebar. In my opinion, this is one of the top two or three blogs in Southeast Texas.

In the event that Gator sees this, I'm curious - you haven't commented on the $2.4 billion upgrade of the Port Arthur Valero plant. Unless I'm mistaken, I think that each of the three biggest refineries are now initiating massive expansion projects. Any thoughts?

Welcome Our Friends (Still Clueless)

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Philip R. Klein is clueless about the race for the Democratic nomination, but desperately tries to appear credible in his latest posting.

This is Hillary country. This senatorial district is owned by Hillary Clinton as proved this past week when Bill came calling. The party regulars came out. Being the Unions and mainstream demos.

Philip is having a hard time keeping his story straight. 

Of the three unions that have made endorsements so far, the Teamsters, Food and Commercial Workers, and Service Employees unions have all backed Obama. While these are not big players in Southeast Texas, it's indicative of more labor support to come from other unions that are, such as the OCAW.

I found this funny: Philip's reference to "mainstream demos" is a code reference to "white people."  Oops, Klein's racism is showing again!  Unfortunately, Philip's statement is not true - the Beaumont Enterprise has endorsed Obama, so how many "non-mainstream demos" are on their editorial board?

Regarding endorsements, Obama has roughly twice as many in Texas as Hillary, including mainstream Democrats Mark White, Ron Kirk, Lloyd Doggett, Chet Edwards, Al Green, Eddie Bernice Johnson, Garnett Coleman, and Senfronia Thompson, who switched her endorsement from Clinton to Obama. Latinos, once considered a safe demographic  for Clinton, are also starting to split towards Obama, as evidenced by the endorsements of Charlie Gonzalez, Pete Gallego, Ed Garza, and Jeff Ortiz, among others. Lastly, Obama has endorsements from every major newspaper in the state, including the Beaumont Enterprise as I noted above.  

[Hillary] needs the media - because Obama has dominated the front page and the big three TV stations.

So much for this being "Hillary Country;" Philip is still clearly confused, since the local media is only reflecting local developments.

Nor is Philip keeping up with the polls:

And the numbers are leaning Clinton but being eaten away one at a time.

Actually, the latest Associated Press Texas Presidential Poll, released yesterday, has Barack Obama in the lead with 50 percent, while Hillary Clinton is at 46 percent.  Nationally, the New York Times/CBS News poll shows Obama ahead by a margin of 54 to 38 percent. In another poll released by USA Today and the Gallup organization, Obama is leading Clinton 51 to 39 percent. 

Philip's story changes from day to day:

"They continue to say publicly that Southeast Texas is locked up and with the Bill visit last week and the "positive" response they got while in town - they may skip this area (emphasis is mine)."

Hmm...is ol' Crawfish Klein already waffling on this prediction from Tuesday?

According to our sources - Clinton is tentatively coming "sometime over the weekend" and most likely "on Saturday."

Fact Check: Readers will notice also that Philip has no citation concerning his statement that the Clintons "continue to say publicly that Southeast Texas is locked up."  If so, then where's the reference, Philip?  It's quite obvious that Philip is simply making this gibberish up.

I found the following especially funny in Philip's article. As I pointed out in my article on Tuesday entitled, "Philip's Grade: F," Obama is pulling 80 percent or more of the African-American vote, so those districts with higher black populations can be expected to support Obama. This includes Districts 4 and 17, which intersect Jefferson County and will choose a combined total of nine delegates by popular vote.  One day later, Philip suddenly has the magic number:

"There are 9 <delegates> that we have sewed [sic] up in Southeast Texas."

"They want the nine."

Unfortunately, Philip missed the point and is still confused about the primary process. As I pointed out, the two districts will elect nine delegates by popular vote, but choose even more delegates at the precinct conventions after the polls close. 

Succinctly, here are the factors I noted in that article, which will throw the race to Obama:

  • Texas Democrats get to vote twice if they are passionate about their candidate: once in the primary and once in the precinct conventions. This favors Obama.
  • Blacks and students will generate more delegates than Latinos, which also favors Obama.
  • Republican Gerrymandering will help Obama.
  • And, the Latino vote, considered Hillary's ace-in-the-hole, is splintering towards Obama.

If Philip's thesis that Clinton will only visit those areas where her support needs shoring up is correct, she'll have her hands full with the Hispanic areas. Southeast Texas has already crossed the line to Obama.  Isn't it ironic how a self-anointed political expert missed that?

I do so enjoy these late night postings, Philip.  Next time, try typing while sober.

Feb 27, 2008

Liberalville (Philip Klein Question of the Week)

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Philip R. Klein writes:

And we all say together....sigh. Just about as big as a sigh of pumping ANOTHER $6 million into the sinking Pleasure Island! THE BIGGEST PORT PROJECT IN TEXAS!

NOT EVEN CLOSE!   Try THIS Port of Houston project on for SIZE:

PHA Commission Approves $74 Million for Next Bayport Wharf

And that's only part of the $250 million in bonds passed by voters last year for the Port of Houston expansion.

Here's the Philip Klein Question of the Week: reconcile this position with your previous position on Pleasure Island Director Jimmy Dike and his campaign for Jefferson County Precinct 3 Commissioner :

Jimmy Dyke [sic]. For over 10 years he has managed the biggest government project in the history of Jefferson County. That being Pleasure Island. And when you look about - you see a guy that understands the show. Sources this weekend tell the Review that Dyke  [sic] has simply put his resume out there. He is a leader with a positive outlook that is refreshing. And frankly - if any of the above should take the ride - it should be Jimmy Dyke [sic].  We would love to see him up there giving some common sense to some pretty big time guys in politics that have their own agendas in place and as a goal rather than what is best for Jefferson County.

I guess those "tax-and-spend Democrats" are okay if they're FOKkers (Friends of Klein). 

I hope Jimmy didn't pay Philip for his political expertise in throwing mud at Alma Cantu.  If so, I think Dike should get a refund since Philip can't even spell his name properly.

Most importantly, I wonder if Jimmy Dike is endorsing Hardin County D.A. Bugs Coe?

Update

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Philip R. Klein writes:

According to our sources - [Hillary] Clinton is tentatively coming "sometime over the weekend" and most likely "on Saturday."

According to the Beaumont Enterprise, who quotes the Hillary Clinton Campaign Office:

Clinton's schedule, released by her press office, says she is in Ohio today, Houston on Thursday, San Antonio on Friday and Fort Worth and Dallas on Saturday.

The local Clinton office could not confirm if she will visit Beaumont after her Dallas stop.

Maybe Sunday or Monday, Philip? 

Feb 26, 2008

Airwaves

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After reading Philip R. Klein's latest article, I wonder if Bugs Coe is paying Philip a retainer or on a per-article basis for this mudslinging:

Over the past months, Sheffield has run a negative campaign. Touting what he says is the deficiencies in the current officeholder, Henry Coe. Then the tables were turned on Sheffield and it was discovered that Sheffield himself had not filed cases properly and had to go back and change over 800 cases.

Philip is confused about the nature of a negative campaign.  Referencing an incumbent's record in office does not constitute  a negative campaign, while publishing lies and half-truths about a candidate is:

"We know of 27,000 cases that may be overturned," said a source that demanded there [sic] name not be used.

I previously debunked this issue in detail,  which was decisively decided in court by Justice David Gaultney.  This is simply "more of the same old think, over and over and over again."

Philip even repackages the same line again:

That Coe had gotten in bed with the Review to run a slam piece on him....? A GOPER helping a DEMO? [sic].

In Philip's case, it's happened before:

Carl R. Griffith Jr. - Oh boy. Here is our man...The leader of all leaders (and we are serious about that). The guy has his ticket written and the media loves him.

Of course, Griffith went down in flames after getting Philip's seal of approval.  Bugs Coe deserves nothing less for his part in this insidious attack on David Sheffield. 

Philip writes:

And the cops? They are solid behind Henry Coe.  

If this is correct, then where are the endorsements? 

Philip never answered my question as to whether this attack on David Sheffield is a paid service of "Philip R. Klein, Political Relations."  If so, I can see why Philip has a long history of bad relationships.

Philip's Grade: F

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Philip R. Klein obliquely answered my question concerning the importance of Jefferson County in the Democratic Presidential Primary (see article here), which came in the form of a purported  "Reader Mail."  Quite typically, Philip's answer is completely wrong and shows very little knowledge of the real political process at play (emphasis is mine):

From Beaumont :

Question:  "Hey Kline - why do you think this area is so important for the national candidates?"

Answer : Southeast Texas - for as bad as it is - is ripe for what the democrats stand for. Bigger government. Higher taxes. And the victim mentality. Everyone is a victim and the candidates have the answers. Also - this senatorial districts has some serious meanings. It has numbers. Meaning numbers of democrats. And this is the last stand for Hillary. Obama knows that this is Hillaryville. And if he can come in to her power base and knock it down or at least break it up a little - he can score a win in Texas. It is that important.

One can always tell when Philip manufactures a question. In this case, he's the only one who refers to himself as "Kline," in the mistaken belief that his readers will think this is real person who doesn't know how to spell Philip Klien.

Klein's answer is more simplistic gibberish based on his "same old think, over and over and over again."  Philip's statement that Jefferson County is important because residents favor higher taxes, bigger government, ad nauseam, has nothing whatsoever to do with the importance of these  two senatorial districts in the delegate selection process.

So, before I get into the real answer of which Senatorial district is most important and why, let me correct some of Philip's errors in his response and recent articles. 

Democratic voters in Jefferson County favor Barack Obama, not Hillary Clinton as Philip claims. Consider that President Clinton met privately with Hispanic leaders when he visited Jefferson County, since Hillary has a shrinking lead among Hispanics over Obama.  Yet, in the demographic make-up of Jefferson County, 14 percent are Hispanic, while African-Americans make up 34 percent.

Among African-American voters, Obama is consistently winning more than 80 percent of their vote and is also significantly increasing their turnout. Meanwhile, Obama's popularity is also increasing among Texas Hispanics, especially younger Latinos.

Even someone as dense as Philip should be able to do the math on this one and see President Clinton's strategy in visiting local Jefferson County Hispanic leaders.

Another error that Philip has repeatedly made is his misunderstanding that all 228 Texas delegates will be elected by voters from the 31 Texas Senatorial Districts. This is not true; actually, only 126 delegates will be selected  by voters during the March 4th primary. Another 67 Democratic delegates will be awarded based on attendance at precinct conventions (or caucuses), which begin 15 minutes after primary polls close,  Finally, the state has 35 super delegates.

Both of these are rookie errors that demonstrate Klein's lack of understanding about how the political process in Texas works. 

Regarding which of the two Senatorial Districts that make up Jefferson County is most important, District 17, which includes South Jefferson County, is moderately more important. District 17 will choose five delegates and one alternative, while District 4, which includes North Jefferson County, will choose four delegates and one alternate.  Actually, both are quite important, since these have higher African-American population than Latinos.

This brings us to issue of why districts with high African-American populations are important. The delegate formula is detailed in this document, the Texas Delegate Selection Plan.

A cursory read will reveal that the turnout formula has assigned more delegates to urban centers with a lot of young or black voters that tend to favor Obama. Districts that contain high populations of poorer Hispanics get fewer delegates, but these are the very districts that ostensibly favor Clinton. For instance, Austin, which includes the University of Texas, gets eight; Houston gets seven, and Dallas gets six. And, the two districts that intersect Jefferson County get a combined total of nine delegates. 

Or putting this into another perspective, the two districts represented by black senators, plus Austin, will send a total of 21 delegates to Denver. The six Democratic districts with Hispanic senators will only send 22.

Philip, is this a little clearer now?  Theoretically, Hillary Clinton could beat Barack Obama by eight to 10 points and still come out about even on Texas delegates. 

This is another by-product of the contentious statewide redistricting process earlier this decade, when the Republican majority concentrated high-density pockets of Democrats into only a few districts. 

Philip gets an F with his answer - next time, do your homework, Philip, if you want to play with the big boys.

Feb 25, 2008

Twofer, Following the SET $, and No One's Home

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Philip R. Klein has yet to explain which senatorial district in Jefferson County is important and why (see this article). This should be a softball question for a shrewd political insider like Philip.

Philip posted a number of donor records by prominent Democrats today.  Ironically, he cherry-picked the records that he posted, since those are only a very few of the donations made from Jefferson County. 

I thought it would be interesting to cherry-pick my own donation records.  Here's what I found on OpenSecrets.org, dating back to 1992:

Contributor Occupation Date Amount Recipient
KLEIN, PHILIP MR
NEDERLAND,TX 77627
KLEIN INVESTMENTS INC./PRESIDENT 4/27/2007 $300 National Republican Congressional Committee

KLEIN, PHILLIPS
NEDERLAND,TX 77627

PRK ENTERPRISES

8/10/1994

$250

Texas Restaurant Association

KLEIN, PHILIP B
NEDERLAND,TX 77627
DAIRY QUEEN 3/31/1994 $1,000

Hutchison, Kay Bailey


Readers can infer several things from Philip's contributions over the past 16 years.

  • Philip is a Republican. No big surprise there.
  • Klein probably misspelled Senator Hutchison's name on the check, because her name is misspelled on the front page of his web site.
  • Philip can't even spell his own name correctly, since those records are exactly as presented from the website database.
  • PRK isn't much of a player, since he's only made three contributions in 16 years.  Since money talks in politics, very few people are listening to Philip.  For an interesting comparison, many of those donors on Klein's hand-picked list have contributed more in one day than Philip contributed in 16 years.
  • Philip parlayed his $250 dollar donation to the Texas Restaurant Association into a highly-successful political relations gig (snicker).
  • Philip apparently made more money as a Dairy Queen, since he donated a total of $1250 during that time period, but only $300 dollars as the principal in Klein Investments.  Is this some insight into why that business went down the toilet?

Philip mentioned some attorneys in his article - I found this campaign donation interesting

Contributor Occupation Date Amount Recipient
MORGAN, JOHN
BEAUMONT,TX 77702
LINDSAY & MORGAN; PLLC/ATTORNEY 3/28/2007 $250 Edwards, John


In my opinion, this doesn't say much about Morgan's ability to pick a winner.

Regarding Philip's unnamed sources, the Bayou picked up on Philip's prediction concerning an Airport visit by Hillary Clinton:

And Phil Klein at SETPoliticalReview.com quotes unnamed sources who say Clinton will visit Southeast Texas this weekend, likely for a quick airport rally. One source said a final decision will be made Wednesday, but no other details were given.

The Enterprise has been trying to confirm both visits this afternoon and cannot get any confirmations. Tick, tick, tick ...

I hope Philip's "unnamed sources" pan out for once - if not, I'm looking forward to having great fun with this!

Feb 24, 2008

Huh? (Still Clueless)

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In his latest article Philip writes:

According to our sources, newspapers, and TV people as well as campaign staff - the Clinton Rally this last week in a downtown parking lot brought in around 800 - 1000 people. As our sources told us - the security, staff and dignitaries made up a bunch of the crowd?

Now his legacy and the inflation of the numbers? This from the Beaumont Enterprise :

"Michelle Obama's visit comes five days after former president Bill Clinton met with local Hispanic leaders and spoke at a rally here attended by 1,000 to 2,000 Southeast Texans."

Fact Check: According to Philip's sources, the Clinton rally didn't happen and there was only a small private meeting.  However, Klein's original numbers of 800 to 1000 came from this article on Channel 4/KBTV:

Nearly 1000 Gather in Downtown Beaumont for Clinton Rally

Compare this with the number estimated in the Channel 12/KBMT report:

Some 2,000 people attended the rally.

Philip's sources apparently no longer include Jerry Jordan, who published this estimate in The Examiner:

"...Bill Clinton told nearly 1,100 people gathered across from the Beaumont Public Library..."

The number that Philip quoted from the Beaumont Enterprise is consistent  with their estimate in their original story on the rally:

Clinton staged a rally for his wife, Sen. Hillary Clinton, D-N.Y., and presidential candidate, before a crowd estimated at between 1,000 and 2,000 in downtown Beaumont.

While Philip is now claiming media bias and/or conspiracy, I pointed out the discrepancy in Philip's number last week in this posting. 

Typically, the rest of Philip's article is just as confused.  For instance:

"...Jefferson Theater. Population 1,900."

Population 1,900?  Is he referring to the crack addicts that make up his sources "close to the Beaumont City Hall?"  If so, I seriously doubt there are that many who actually live in the Jefferson Theatre.

I'm sure he didn't mean"Capacity 1,900,"  since the real capacity of the Jefferson Theatre is clearly stated in the Beaumont Enterprise article on Michelle Obama's visit:

The Jefferson Theatre holds about 1,450 people.

Philip writes:

This folks is called media down play.

Actually, this is called stupidity by a self-anointed  "political consultant."  Here's another example:

First, Jefferson County is quickly becoming a black and minority run County.[sic]

Philip doesn't explain why he thinks a county run by African-Americans is a bad thing (unless, of course, his racism is showing again), but 2006 figures from the U.S. Census Bureau show his statement is wrong. In percentages:

  • White persons: 60.9%
  • Black persons: 34.8%

In the 1990 census, the African-American population was estimated at 31 percent. This is certainly not the explosive growth that Philip claims. 

And finally, Philip reminds us that:

Again - we have hinted about this - this senatorial district is important to both.

Unfortunately, Philip is still clueless as to which of the two senatorial districts he's referencing or exactly why (see article below).  I'll put up the answer after I rub Philip's nose in this a bit longer.

Questions Left on the Table

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Philip R. Klein writes of Jefferson County's role in the Texas Democratic Primary:

Remember - this is a very important senatorial district.

Unfortunately, Philip doesn't specify which senatorial district to which he's referring.  Jefferson County has been gerrymandered into District 4 (represented by Tommy Williams) and 17 (represented by no one, since Kyle Janek resigned - still no comment on that, buddy?).  So, which of these two districts is the "very important senatorial district?"

Here's a challenge for Philip Klein: identify which district he's referencing and explain why it's importance.  Hint: it has nothing to do with Jefferson County being a "Democratic stronghold."

Feb 22, 2008

Where in the World is Philip Klein?

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In his Nitwit Tidbits last night, Philip R. Klein wrote:

"A little early this week.....and greetings from the left coast....the snowy shaky left coast."

As I noted in the article below, someone on Philip's office computer loaded pages from Operation Kleinwatch yesterday afternoon. Last night, someone on Philip's home computer loaded pages from my blog just before he posted his update. I checked the weather on the West Coast about an hour after Philip posted his Nitwit Tidbits and noticed that was no snow anywhere on the West Coast:

Ironically, I've had several more page loads from Philip's computers today. Perhaps Philip meant "snow job?"

Feb 21, 2008

Nitwit Tidbits

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Philip's R. Klein begins his Nitwit Tidbits this week with this statement:

"A little early this week.....and greetings from the left coast....the snowy shaky left coast."

If Philip is on the West Coast, he may want to phone home.  Someone used his office computer this afternoon to visit Operation Kleinwatch.  Later this evening, someone used Klein's home computer to visit my blog just before he posted this version of Nitwit Tidbits. 

Typically, there is little of interest and even less substance:

Clinton - Do not think that we do not think that it is a great honor to have a former president to come by SET. It is. It is just sad that only around 800 people came to see the man. No matter who you are for.

Yawn.

Jail Dispute - Over and deal cut. We have been told that there are some really hard feelings on this one that are not going away soon. Ya...right.

On January 18, 2008, Philip wrote of the jail dispute between Jefferson County and the City of Port Arthur:

Folks this is going to get good and bloody and we like good and bloody politics!

"Ya...right."

Lampson - Interesting! Took a big hit in the polls. Will not take sides in the Hill v. Obama race.

Readers will notice that Philip doesn't name the polls in which Lampson allegedly "took a big hit." That's probably because  there aren't any such polls; rather, Philip's information came from this article in yesterday's Beaumont Enterprise

New York Times - McCain story. You can catch it on the front page. Interesting x2. Hit piece.

Yawn.

BISD Cops Talk - Ohhhh do we have a story for you next week. You got to read Monday's editions. And get this. PAISD is talking about its own cop shop.

Let me guess: big fight in the Ozen lunchroom?

Missile Defense System - D**n...it works.

Yawn.

Emergency Landing For Senators - John Kerry, Joe Biden, and Chuck Hagel were on a chopper that had to make an emergency landing. In Afghanistan? All are okay...let the jokes begin.

Yawn.

1000 (And a Challenge for Philip R. Klein)

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Klein writes of President Clinton's visit to Southeast Texas:

Well, the dog and pony show has left Southeast Texas. And according to our sources with the Clinton camp - they were less than excited with the turn out [sic].

We heard that there were about 800 to 1000 people there. We were expecting a little more," said the source.

Philip's figure came from the KBTV/Channel 4 story on the event.  Here's the headline, posted over two hours before Klein's article:

Nearly 1000 Gather in Downtown Beaumont for Clinton Rally

The Beaumont Enterprise had a different figure:

Clinton staged a rally for his wife, Sen. Hillary Clinton, D-N.Y., and presidential candidate, before a crowd estimated at between 1,000 and 2,000 in downtown Beaumont.

I'm reminded of Philip's sources who told him:

According to our sources - Clinton will come to town [either Wednesday or Thursday] for a private fundraiser, speech and rally if Hillary's advance team can get into town in the next 24 hours.

When asked about money - the source told us : "It will be a private even and probably very short."

Wrong on both of those items; nevertheless, Philip still offers his take on President Clinton's visit in this latest article:

We are not democrats [sic] and we were not there. But we do know that in the past even the GOP was able to muster 1000 people to see a vice president or candidate. If it was low - then it is a sign that Hillary will take a fall in this area. Remember - this is a very important senatorial district. And they know it.

We smell an Obama win in the air - but who are we. [sic] Just some scampi repubs......[sic]

Scampi Republicans?   Did I miss something or is Philip referring to food again? Typically, Philip's article is long on simplistic opinion and manufactured sources, but short on actual content. 

However, it doesn't take a self-declared political relations expert to see that Obama has substantially more momentum than Clinton. In a poll released Monday, both candidates are in a statistical dead heat.  That's especially significant, since just 6 weeks ago Clinton was leading Obama by as much as 16 points in some polls.

Readers will also note that Philip consistently tries to impress us with his knowledge of the Texas Primary process:

Remember - this is a very important senatorial district.

He's made this identical reference in every article he's written about the primary, including the first one (see this previous posting).

Typically, Philip is confused again.  Jefferson County has been gerrymandered into two senatorial districts, Districts 4 (represented by Tommy Williams) and 17 (represented by no one, since Kyle Janek resigned - still no comment on that, buddy?).  So, which is the "very important senatorial district?"

Here's a challenge for Philip Klein: identify which district he's referencing and explain it's importance. Hint: it has nothing to do with Jefferson County being a "Democratic stronghold." 

This should be very easy for a shrewd expert in "political relations," but I bet Klein has no idea since he's already confused about the Senatorial districts that make up Jefferson County. I'll put the answer up this week-end, after Philip has had a chance to consult his "sources."  I suspect he'll ignore the question, since he doesn't know the answer.

Feb 20, 2008

Meanwhile, Back at the Ranch...

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While I'm  waiting for Philip's latest posting which will no doubt offer some shrewd insight into President Clinton's visit to Beaumont today, I'll note again that Jeff Ortiz (see article below) broke the news at 10:00 AM this morning concerning a Beaumont visit by a major U.S. Senator on Saturday.  Philip's sources apparently lost his phone number.

I'm reminded of a previous visit by George H.W. Bush to Lamar University in 1992.  This story is unsubstantiated, but I've heard the same details from multiple sources. To me, it has the ring of truth.

When word leaked that the elder Bush would visit the campus on a campaign stop, Philip barged into Dr. Sam Monroe's office and offered his expertise on publicity and security.  Since Dr. Monroe had never heard of Philip Klein at the time, Dr. Monroe initially tried to politely dismiss Philip.

Unfortunately, Philip missed the hint and insisted upon inserting himself into the event.  Eventually, Dr. Monroe had to tell Philip,  "Get the h**l out of my office!"

Philip responded, "So, you want me to disengage?"  

My question of the week: Is that story true, Philip? And, what about that visit by Vice-President Dan Quayle - weren't you advised to stand down on that one as well?

Breaking News: Jeff's Sources

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Oh, look! Apparently the Obama campaign informed Jeff Ortiz that a major U.S. Senator will be in town on Saturday, but they didn't call Philip. The Senator will campaign for Obama. Which major U.S. Senator is touring Texas right now as a part of the Obama campaign?
By the way, take a few moments and read Jeff's recent articles. He's definitely got better sources than Philip and he makes a lot more sense.

A Reader Writes

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A reader left this comment concerning President Clinton's visit today:

Question of the Day:  Will the "dysfunctional" PRK loosen the knot in his knickers and show up at the courthouse to ask Bill Clinton for an autograph?

I'm not sure about the autograph, but prepare to be trampled if you get between Philip R. Klein and a live camera or microphone.  

Feb 19, 2008

BISD Gang Fight

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In Philip R. Klein's latest article, he writes:

Yes...there was a fight (gangs) at the job fair sponsored by the industrial board. And it included both of Southeast Texas's finest school districts. The Beaumont Independent School District and the Port Arthur Independent School District.  [sic]

After bashing the local school districts, Philip lapses into the "same old think, over and over and over again."  Seriously, folks, Philip is serious, very serious:

Seriously folks. There are some serious problems in Southeast Texas. Very serious. And what you are seeing is simply the overflow of the problems.

And you ask the question why?

Well the Review says ask that question to the democrats you have elected to office. That you allow to spend your tax dollars like it was paper. And those to which you simply trust. They have let you down. They are part of the problem and continue to be the problem.

While Klein argues that this is solely isolated to Southeast Texas, Philip failed to mention last week's shooting at Northern Illinois University, the February 8th shootings on-campus at Louisiana Technical College in Baton Rouge, or the shooting last month at Delaware State University. In December, a 14 year-old student shot two teachers and two students at Cleveland High School and in November, an 18-year-old student in Finland killed seven kids and a teacher.

There are more that I could mention over the past months, including the Virginia Tech shootings last April, when a student with emotional problems went off his meds. Philip should know something about that.

Here's a story that Philip apparently missed:

BEAUMONT STUDENT WINS 1st PRIZE IN “STUDENTCAM,”  C-SPAN’S NATIONAL STUDENT VIDEO  DOCUMENTARY COMPETITION

WASHINGTON (February 19, 2008) - C-SPAN announced today that Whylan Rucker, a 12th grade student at Clifton J. Ozen High School in Beaumont, TX, received First Prize in C-SPAN’s “StudentCam,” www.studentcam.org , the video documentary contest that invites middle and high school students to produce a video exploring a current political topic using C-SPAN programming.

Interestingly enough, Philip also had purported  "reader mail" who posited a question along the same line:

From Port Arthur Texas :

"Why do the generation [sic] of children act the way they do Mr. Klein?"

Answer : I just do not know. Maybe complete social break down? [sic]

I can seen Philip's appeal to his thousands of readers - they all have simplistic ideas, make the same grammatical errors, misspell the same words, and have the same bumper sticker mentalities.

As I've pointed out before that Philip's glass is half-empty, which matches his wit. It's interesting to note that at least some of those kids at Ozen have a better grasp of politics than Philip R. Klein.

Revisiting Klein's article on President Bill Clinton's visit, I did a little research on one of his sources:

We contacted the Obama office in Austin and Houston and they were interested to hear the information.

"Thanks for the tip guys. We will call you when we come!" - said the vice manager of the Houston Campaign.

After talking with both the Obama and Clinton Campaign headquarters in Houston this morning, I was told that neither office was open until after 3 PM yesterday afternoon, even though Klein posted his story at 2:50 PM.   I was referred to a KTRK Channel 13 story and a Houston Chronicle article.   

I was also told that there is no such thing as a "Vice Manager" in the Obama campaign office in Houston. The closest thing is a local volunteer coordinator.  Isn't it strange that Philip's source failed to disclose any of that information?

Feb 18, 2008

Rejoice

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According to Philip R. Klein:

The Southeast Texas Political Review has been contacted by sources in Austin that have been given preliminary notice that former President of the United States William Jefferson Clinton will be in Beaumont either Wednesday or Thursday of this week.

According to our sources - Clinton will come to town for a private fundraiser, speech and rally if Hillary's advance team can get into town in the next 24 hours.

When asked about money - the source told us : "It will be a private even and probably very short.

Too bad Philip's sources aren't as good as my sources, who had the exact time, place, and some conflicting information concerning that "private appearance:"

Clinton will meet with several dozen Hispanic leaders from the area. He will also hold a rally outside Carlito's Mexican restaurant.

People wanting to attend the rally need to be outside the restaurant by 11:30 a.m. Wednesday. Clinton is set to arrive just after noon. Carlito's is located at the intersection of Amarillo and College Street.

I corroborated this with another of my many sources:

Former president Bill Clinton will be in Beaumont Wednesday to stump for his wife's Hillary presidential bid, the Clinton campaign confirmed Monday afternoon.

Clinton will meet privately with about 50 prominent Hispanic leaders in the area at Carlito's restaurant, said owner Carlos Hernandez, Sr. That meeting is scheduled shortly after noon.

After the meeting, the former president will speak at a rally outside of the restaurant.

A third source told me that local Latino leaders have been working on this visit since last Friday:

Carlos Hernandez, the owner of Carlito's Restaurant in Beaumont, says an aide with Senator Hillary Clinton's campaign contacted him Friday about having the former president attend a rally at his business, Carlito's off College Street in Beaumont, this Wednesday at noon.

WARNING: Now that I've spilled the real beans, attendees should use a rental car, since Philip will be taking names and license plate numbers:

[It} will be fun to see who will get their mug with the prez!

Prepare to be trampled if you get between Philip R. Klein and a live camera or microphone, and he may even try to issue a public information request for your time cards (snicker).

On a more serious note, Philip uses this press release as an opportunity for self-aggrandizement:

We contacted the Obama office in Austin and Houston and they were interested to hear the information.

"Thanks for the tip guys. We will call you when we come!" - said the vice manager of the Houston Campaign.

Translation: "Don't call us, we'll call you." Actually, there is no "vice manager of the Houston Campaign," since the campaigns are all administered at the state level. Isn't it ironic how Philip's source somehow missed that?

I noticed that the tone of his original article was distinctly different than the tone of this article:

"We told you - this senatorial district is important gang. Watch them come and go. And do not be surprised if you do not see one of both come to town. And we do not mean the former President."

Whereas the tone of PRK's original article was derisive, Philip's new article is positively orgasmic.  Perhaps he's just excited because he actually got something almost right for once, but I've written about Philip's preoccupation with power before - see the article, Powerful People, here.

Klein's confusion about the type of government we have in the U.S. is readily apparent:

And all SOUTHEAST TEXAS DEMOCRATS REJOICE!!!! The King Comes To Town.

The United States doesn't have a King; that is, unless King George III has risen from the dead. Even then, King George could not be considered the King of the United States, since we declared our independence from the British Monarchy in 1776. I suppose Philip slept through American History before 1865, in addition to English, Economics, Math, and Political Science.

On an unrelated subject, let's revisit Philip's first article of the week (see below), where he wrote:

The question is simple. Pct. 3 in Jefferson County is made up of dysfunctional people in a dysfunctional place called Port Arthur, Texas. And that means that only the dysfunctional will run. However, in the race only one stands out as the true leader. And the editorial board of the Beaumont Enterprise finally got one right.

Compare Philip's spin with what the Enterprise actually wrote:

A runoff is almost inevitable, and the two strongest candidates are Raymond C. Johnson and Jimmy Dike. Johnson is a longtime Port of Port Arthur commissioner with vast experience in the petrochemical industry. Dike is a Pleasure Island commissioner with an extensive background in economic development.

In the Enterprise endorsements, I see nothing about Dike being the only candidate who "stands out as a true leader." How about you?

Isn't it odd that Philip failed to mention this endorsement by the Enterprise:

Hardin County district attorney, Democrats -- This is a tough race to decide. Henry A. Coe came in four years ago and did a better job than his predecessor. Yet the office needs more cases prosecuted. Hardin County Attorney David Sheffield could deliver the diligence that taxpayers want and criminals fear.

If Bugs Coe paid Philip for that hatchet job on David Sheffield, I hope Bugs asks for a refund.

Who Will They Choose?

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Philip R. Klein writes:

Pct. 3 in Jefferson County is made up of dysfunctional people in a dysfunctional place called Port Arthur, Texas. And that means that only the dysfunctional will run. However, in the race only one stands out as the true leader. And the editorial board of the Beaumont Enterprise finally got one right.

Readers will remember that Philip promised a background investigation into each of the candidates; instead, he became confused over technical terms like holiday pay and comp time when he published Alma Cantu's time sheets. After that embarrasment, he dropped the "investigation" like a hot stone.

Furthermore, Klein's fallacious logic is obvious: if only dysfunctional people will run for the Precinct 3 Commissioner's seat, then Jimmy Dykes must be dysfunctional, according to Klein's reasoning.

While Philip's bias towards the Beaumont Enterprise is quite evident, the newspaper has a much better track record than Klein. His approval is usually the political kiss of death. For instance, in the Precinct 1 race, Philip claimed that:

Two are waiting in the wings to run the only GOPER for any seat - being Eddie Arnold.

Arnold is running unopposed.

Philip also claimed that:

Switch-a-roo is a rumor in Hardin County. Some kind of wave going around about party changing in the Court House like went down in Chambers County.

Reality: 0ut of 13 races, two have Republican candidates. Of those two, Commissioner Precinct 3 Ken Pelt is the sitting Republican, who drew no opposition. Philip further claimed that:

Orange County is...a Red County to boot!

Out of 12 local races, NO Republicans filed.

Did I mention the dysfunctional people in Precinct 2?

Regarding Philip's recent purported mail from his readers, I particularly liked this one:

Q: I just read the KFDM web site and the comments made about you. Are you biased against KFDM?

A: Nope - anything but.

Compare that statement with an unsubstantiated rumor that Philip published a few months ago:

"'The rumor going around is that Larry may be on his way out,' said the source."

Or these statements from the past few months:

"...the now beleaguered station."

Jackie Simien who bolted from KFDM this past year as did Angel San Juan.

Well, his news product has gone down a little with the new techno stuff

Well take away all of the mistakes……and ……..get the idea?

Philip has also frequently invoked the "L" word when referring to Channel 6:

Big Government Meets TV - A blurb hits the back page of the Enterprise Business section. Seems the liberals over at KFDM got socked with the $10,000 fine from the FCC.

Readers can decide for themselves whether Philip is biased.

Regarding this item from his Nitwit Tidbits on Friday:

"Did you see how many spellin [sic] errors the DOKS had this week? I found 11.

If Philip found 11 "spellin" errors, I suspect it's because he didn't recognize the proper "spellin." List them for us, Philip!

Feb 15, 2008

Ol' Crawfish Klein (or Fat, Fluffy Chicken?)

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In answer to a purported letter from his reader, Philip R. Klein wrote: 

"In e-mails this morning there is a suggestion that we answer one of [Operation Kleinwatch's] questions a week right here. So we will make that attempt to garner a little debate.

This lasted exactly one week (see article here), before I posed a question that Philip couldn't "debate" (see article here).

In a transparent attempt at resurrecting his non-existent credibility, Philip changed the rules in his Nitwit Tidbits this week:

DOKS - Let's start with the new look. We like it. Very nice. Good graphics and wonderful behind the scene message. We get it and we are ready to war also. As for our question to the DOKs on who they are - no answer. So no answers to their questions. That simple. 

My first thought was that, if Philip doesn't read Operation Kleinwatch as he frequently claims, how did he know that I changed the site template?  But, I digress.

Philip's original statement is quite different:

We all want to know - why do you not sign your true name?" (notice I did not ask your true name) Give us all on honest answer.

Asked and answered here.   In his response, Philip made a clumsy attempt at changing the original terms:

But I will make the DOKS a deal - I will read and respond every day IF the writer signs his / her real name and proves that it is truly them.

Readers will notice similarities to a case where court records documented that Philip arbitrarily changed his rates from $50 to $75 dollars an hour after reaching an agreement with a local attorney. In response to my fact checks this week, Philip provided his own spin:

To Review this weeks posts on us (1) we spell wrong, (2) we make up sources, (3) we are mentally ill, and more of the usual. However, we see a hint of agreement that Ford Park is a money pit? Say it is not so DOK? See ya in court.

If Philip plans on suing me, I wonder if I should bring all of my articles that prove he's a wingnut with manufactured anonymous sources?   Here's only one of many examples.  Readers can decide for themselves whether I adequately documented the inconsistencies in PRK's wingnut opinions this week.   See this article , this article, and this article.

As I've pointed out, Philip has s history of dropping subjects when he can't answer the questions or back up his own wingnut opinions.  Consider our recent exchanges concerning the NVFD Fire Department here and here,  or his lawsuit against Mark Faggard here.   Still no comment on those, buddy?

Regarding the "hint of agreement that Ford Park is a money pit," I think Philip R. Klein has argued that the taxpayers of Jefferson County should continue  to subsidize the Texas Wildcatters and pay for Ford Park at a cost of over $1.5 million each year.

Still no comments, buddy?

Feb 14, 2008

Saved?

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On Ford Park, Philip R. Klein continues to firmly stake out a hard and fast position on both sides of the issue in his latest article:

As the dismantling of Ford Park continue [sic]...

Since Philip is arguing from both sides of his mouth, perhaps this is another reason he continues to refer to himself in the plural.  Unfortunately, even Philip admits there is a problem:

As for the Wildcatters...They have been losing around $10k a game from what we hear. 

Actually, Jefferson County taxpayers are losing about $7,000 per game, according to a previous story in the Beaumont Enterprise:

County Auditor Patrick Swain said the county loses about $7,000 per game, based on an evaluation of 63 home games over the past two seasons. That's an increase from an estimated per-game loss of $5,500 by the county during the 2004-2005 season, when the team paid at least $3,000 in per-game rent, Swain said.

At 7k per game for 63 games, that's approximately $441,000. The figure does not include other costs, such as hockey-related repairs to the facility.   These costs are a substantial amount of the annual budget that Jefferson County taxpayers must subsidize to keep the facility operating and the Wildcatters in place.

Yet Philip wants Jefferson County to continue underwriting these losses, presumably so he'll have something to complain about.

Philip's solution:

Maybe some seats sold and some good old hockey is just what is needed.

Since the Wildcatters have been here for the past eight years, they've had more than ample opportunity to sell some seats.  Philip's simplistic solution overlooks the realities of the situation:

The Wildcatters average a league-low 1,727 in attendance but hold the league's best record with 37 victories through 48 games.

All of this is why the county is asking for a $10,000 per game guarantee per game.  Evidence of Philip's bias is especially evident when Commissioner Bo  Alfred makes more financial sense than Philip:

County Commissioner Bo Alfred said the county needs to eliminate the per-game loss.

"As a business man, when you sit down for any negotiation, if there's a large gap, from a business standpoint you have to close that gap," Alfred said.

The financial problems that face the Texas Wildcatters seem to be standard operating procedure for many of the teams in the East Coast Hockey League. Readers with a memory longer than Philip may remember that the Wildcatters were originally the Huntington Blizzard, who lasted for seven highly-unprofitable seasons in West Virginia before moving on to Beaumont.

The history of the ECHL is littered with similar stories. Here's a list of defunct teams over the past 20 years or so that couldn't make it financially:

  • Arkansas RiverBlades (1999-2003)
  • Atlantic City Boardwalk Bullies (2001-2005; moved to Stockton, CA)
  • Baton Rouge Kingfish (1996-2003; moved to Victoria, BC)
  • Birmingham Bulls (1992-2001; moved to Atlantic City, NJ)
  • Chesapeake Icebreakers (played in Upper Marlboro, MD, 1997-1999; moved to Jackson, MS)
  • Columbus Chill (1991-1999; moved to Reading, PA)
  • Columbus Cottonmouths (GA) (2001-2004; moved to Bradenton-Sarasota, FL to play as Gulf Coast Swords, franchise revoked in summer 2006 after construction halted on proposed home arena)
  • Erie Panthers (1988-1996; moved to Baton Rouge, LA)
  • Greensboro Generals (1999-2004; team franchise revoked)
  • Greensboro Monarchs (1989-1995; replaced by the Carolina Monarchs of the AHL)
  • Greenville Grrrowl (1998-2006) (franchise revoked)
  • Hampton Roads Admirals (1989-2000; replaced by the Norfolk Admirals of the AHL)
  • Huntsville Blast (1993-1994; moved to Tallahassee, FL)
  • Jackson Bandits (1999-2003)
  • Jacksonville Lizard Kings (1995-2000)
  • Knoxville Cherokees (1988-1997; moved to Florence, SC)
  • Lexington Men O' War (2002-2003; moved to West Valley City, UT)
  • Long Beach Ice Dogs (1993-2007) (franchise revoked)
  • Louisiana IceGators (1995-2005) (franchise revoked)
  • Louisville IceHawks (1990-1994; moved to Jacksonville, FL)
  • Louisville River Frogs (1995-1998; moved to Miami, FL) Macon Whoopee (2001-2002; moved to Lexington, KY)
  • Miami Matadors (1998-1999; moved to Cincinnati, OH)
  • Mobile Mysticks (1995-2002; moved to Duluth, GA)
  • Nashville Knights (1989-1996; moved to Pensacola, FL when NHL arrived)
  • New Orleans Brass (1997-2002; team suspended operations after the arrival of the NBA's Hornets when arena lease was not given)
  • Pee Dee Pride (1997-2005; team suspended operations after the 2004-05 season and will become the Myrtle Beach Thunderboltz once a new arena is completed in nearby Conway, SC)
  • Peoria Rivermen (1996-2005; replaced by the Peoria Rivermen of the AHL)
  • Raleigh IceCaps (1991-1998; moved to Augusta, GA when NHL arrived)
  • Richmond Renegades (1990-2003; Replaced by UHL Richmond RiverDogs whom were replaced by the Richmond Renegades of the SPHL)
  • Roanoke Express (1993-2004; franchise revoked)
  • San Diego Gulls (2003-2006) (franchise revoked)
  • Tallahassee Tiger Sharks (1994-2001; moved to Macon, Georgia)
  • Virginia Lancers (1988-1993 in Vinton, VA; franchise later renamed the Roanoke Valley Rebels and Rampage; moved to Huntsville, AL)
  • Winston-Salem Thunderbirds (1988-1992; originally called Carolina before reverting to city name; moved to Wheeling, WV, and eventually become the Nailers in 1995)

Earlier this week, Philip wrote:

And last - be it very clear - we are not a Ford Park supporter. In fact - we have been against Ford Park. We believe that Government should NOT be in the entertainment business. From day one we have said that there needs to be a future for Ford Park - and maybe in the private sector.

Apparently, Philip believes it's okay for Jefferson County taxpayers to underwrite the team's losses if a local private individual becomes the majority stakeholder in the issue.

Note to Philip: don't forget this week's question!  You'll find it here.

Feb 13, 2008

Ballot Mistake?

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Big news from Philip R. Klein:

Late this afternoon the SET Political Review has learned that the 2008 ballots for the primary will have to be redone due to a mistake in leaving out the Democratic Chairman's name - Gilbert Adams.

Boring, but Philip promises to follow up on this important story:

We will try to follow up on this story next week.

As a suggestion, Philip should investigate whether Michael Sinegal was in charge of printing.

While Klein was chasing down the story behind the story about that big printing mistake, his sources missed this breaking news:

From Philip's Reader Mail: As evidence of his international appeal, Philip has posted a message from one of his many readers overseas:

FROM: COL.SHABA ABEBE (RTD)
DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC OF CONGO.
Fax 871 762 921 841

It is my pleasure to request your assistance on this business proposal which if pursued to its conclusion, will be of immense benefit to both of us. This request may seem strange but I will crave your indulgence and pray that you view it seriously. My name is COL.SHABA ABEBE (RTD) of the Democratic Republic of Congo and one of the close aides to the former President of the Democratic Republic of Congo LAURENT KABILA of blessed memory, may his soul rest in peace. Due to the military campaign of LAURENT KABILA to force out the rebels in my country, I was instructed by Late President Kabila to go abroad to purchase arms and ammunition worth of Fifteen Million United States Dollars only (US$15,000,000.00) to fight the rebel group...Please send me your bank account number, so that I can transfer this sum of money into your account for safe-keeping.  You many keep 10% (US$15,000.00) for your assistance in this confidential matter.

Best Regards,

COL.SHABA ABEBE (RTD)

In Philip's latest editorial, he ponders the possibilities of voting in the Democratic Primary:

Can you image the joy and excitement from the left?

Philip's Narcissistic Personality Disorder is evident again, especially since Philip refers to himself as "I" for most of the article, instead of his standard "we."

I suspect that few people have any real interest in how Philip votes. 

Feb 12, 2008

Welcome To Texas (Duh!)

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In his latest article, Philip R. Klein claims that Barak Obama and Hillary Clinton will visit Southeast Texas:

Well here they come. And from what we hear they are both coming here?

"Do not rule it out. This is a democratic [sic] stronghold and the Senate District for delegates is going to be very important. So do not be surprised if both drop by the airport or even try to set up an event," said a democratic source in Austin.

Consider that:

  • This is the first time since the Hart/Mondale race that Texas has played a critical part in the Democratic nomination process.
  • Jefferson County is one of only seven counties in Texas that voted for Kerry in 2004.
  • Both candidates have roughly the same number of delegates.
  • Texas has 229 delegates up for grabs.
  • Both candidates have bought advertising time in Beaumont and already have ads running.
  • Both candidates are setting up field offices in Beaumont.
  • Hillary is in El Paso today and she'll be in McAllen, Robstown, and San Antonio tomorrow.
  • The Austin debate is scheduled for February 21st.
  • A Voter Turnout Drive/Fundraiser event for Hillary Clinton is scheduled on February 23rd in North Beaumont.

It doesn't take a rocket scientist, a "democratic [sic]" source, or a former-DQ-dude-turned-self-declared-political-relations-expert to figure out that there's a very good chance that one or both Democratic candidates will visit Beaumont. 

Klein has my permission to quote me as a source on that one. Granted, I'm a non-partisan centrist, but I do have more credibility than Philip.

While there's a good chance I won't vote for either candidate, I'm excited that Jefferson County will play a part in national politics and perhaps a critical part in choosing the next President.  Philip, on the other hand, sees the glass half-empty and uses this as another opportunity to bash Southeast Texas. 

From a column by James Moore:

Senator Obama's candidacy, however, will dramatically increase the turnout of African-American voters in Texas, mostly in the cities and East Texas. His success is likely to hinge on the large black population in the piney woods of East Texas. Obama will handily carry the vote of urban black voters in Dallas and Houston and their turnout levels will be well beyond the historical norms. If he can do the same thing in East Texas, he has a chance of overwhelming Mrs. Clinton's overwhelming Hispanic support. (Conservative white male Democrats are not good prospects to vote for Mrs. Clinton in Texas and those who go to the polls will probably pick Obama.)

East Texas, a region that spans a distance from Dallas to Houston and up through Tyler and over to Beaumont-Port Arthur, has been a profound political influence in Texas and has decided many statewide elections. The electorate there has been overwhelmingly conservative and any East Texas Democrat caught north of the Red River was easily mistaken for a conservative Republican. In fact, during the 80s Ronald Reagan identified them precisely that way and courted their vote by calling them "Reagan Democrats." Eventually, they became Republicans and stopped identifying themselves with the Democratic Party of Texas. The African-American vote in East Texas, however, stayed with the Democrats and, sufficiently inspired, can help Obama to victory in Texas.

Really, is Philip a moron? 

In Philip's Reader Mail section, he reprinted a message that's currently appearing in the inbox of everyone in the free world, concerning a Che Guevera flag in the office of Houston supporter of Barak Obama.

I received one early yesterday morning as well:

From: XXXX
Sent: Tuesday, February 12, 2008 8:53 AM
To: Gus Pillsbury
Subject: Cuban Flag in Obama's Houston Campaign Office

This is a link to a local Fox News affiliate in Houston. Notice the flag hanging in prominence over the desk.

http://www.myfoxhouston.com/myfox/pages/Home/Detail?contentId=5700252&version=1&locale=EN-US&layoutCode=VSTY&pageId=1.1.1

Is it Old Glory? No.

Is it the Lone Star? No.

IT is the flag of Cuba with the face of Che Guevara emblazoned on it. Who was Guevara? He was Fidel Castro's right hand man during the communist revolution in Cuba. He was a murderer of the highest order. After Cuba, he further spread Marxism to other parts of Latin America. Don't take my word for it. Do your own research.

Here's a place to start. Wikipedia is too kind.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Che_Guevara

Regardless, whether Obama's campaign endorses this or not, it is a clear indication of the kind of activist who is supporting him.

I'm looking forward to seeing Philip's mail from his "readers" in Nigeria.

Winners And Losers/Manufactured Readers Questions

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Concerning winners and losers in the four-year contract negotiation between Beaumont Firefighters and the City of Beaumont, Philip R. Klein wrote of the bottom line :

And so it is. Split and fit for higher taxes and you get what you get. It is your call.

The rest of his article makes as much sense as this gibberish. Of the firefighters, he writes:

Fire Fighters - In general - the big winners.

Philip made a nice try at hedging his bets, but he completely missed the mark. Most people will see the obvious: the firefighters were as tired of this as everyone else, so they settled the issue when the first marginally reasonable offer was made.

I'm not sure there were any real winners or losers, unless the City of Beaumont is considered a winner because they avoided paying raises to firefighters over the past four years. I think the city got a bargain, considering that firefighters received raises totaling only 30 percent between 2004 and 2012.

With an average annual inflation rate of about 3.1 percent over the past four years, firefighters are effectively breaking even. And, that's assuming inflation doesn't spiral upwards in the next five years, which is almost a certainty.

When extrapolating a 14 percent increase in the cost of living over the past four years (as derived from the annual Consumer Price Index) through the next five years, the firefighters are certainly losers.

Firefighters were effectively denied any back pay, despite having faithfully served the city for four years with no contract or raises. They also lost their rights to seek future binding arbitration and the evergreen clause.

Not a win for the firefighters, especially when considering that firefighters originally sought to have a pay scale commensurate with firefighters who work in private business. We may indeed see a mass exodus, as Philip suggests, but those more likely to leave are younger-trained firefighters who can make 30 percent more each year working for an oil refinery.

Typically, Philip missed the ramifications of the city's offer.

Two other items deserve mention in Philip's so-called analysis of winners and losers:

Mayor Becky Ames - She comes out a big winner.

Kyle Hayes - Mr. Hayes has taken a hit and you have to chalk up a loss for the Beaumont City Manager.

Even to someone as dense as Philip Klein, it's fairly obvious that the Mayor had more to do with this offer than previous offers from the City Manager. However, this seems like a classic case of good cop/bad cop to me.

Hayes certainly deserves some credit for dragging this out to the point that firefighters would accept only a slightly better deal than previous offers, while giving the city a free ride for the past four years. Mayor Ames also publicly promised that firefighters would receive back pay and that firefighters would get their four-man engine crews. I think it's a little premature to declare the Mayor a "winner" before we see whether she breaks another promise to the firefighters.

My weekly question for Philip: Since Philip has magnanimously promised to answer one question each week from Operation Kleinwatch, here's this week's question.

He wrote of taxpayers in Beaumont:

The Tax Payers - Like this matters in Jefferson County Texas? Nothing changes. Four men on a truck? Remember that? Never mind. It is money over matter and be sure you will get a good service. But you will pay and pay big. It is up to you how you look at it. If you like what you have and how the money is spent - you should be as happy as a clam. It your taxes are too high....who gives a crap. You live in a county where government is king.

I see lots of rhetoric here ("more of the same old think, over and over and over again"), but little substance. Your point: taxpayers will "pay and pay big" with this offer, which isn't even as good as the Police Department got (20 percent over three years; firefighters got 30 percent over eight years).

Please provide some corroborating evidence for your statement; in other words, explain how this agreement will affect the city tax rate in each of the next five years and how much taxpayers saved by not tendering any firefighter raises whatsoever over the past four years. I'll be watching carefully on Friday for your answer.

If that's too difficult, perhaps you could explain the effects of this agreement on firefighter's comp time and holiday pay.

Regarding Philip's latest "Reader Mail:"

Do you think that Beaumont ISD is spending the bond money is being spent properly?

Philip has manufactured another letter. Since this was posted after 10 PM, we can safely assume that PRK is typing TWI "is being typed while intoxicated again."

Ironically, Philip has a difficult time answering his own question:

I am not sure.

Philip admits his confusion, then asks his own question:

I am a little confused on this super stadium thing? From what I remember there was to be a football stadium and a swimming center? Is there a swim team?

I love the mangled punctuation, but this is not a chicken-or-egg issue. Before a swim team exists, a potential team would need to have a place to swim. Apparently, this is a hard concept for Philip to grasp.

Instead, Philip resorts to the "same old think, over and over and over again;" in this case, his hysteria over selling Ford Park:

I am very interested in watching the county try to dump parts of Ford Park. It is going to be very interesting to watch how it all plays out.

Readers may notice how Philip's redundancy in his answer matches that contained in the original message from a purported reader.

Reiterating my last statement, I'll revisit this issue in the future if idle speculation turns to serious discussion, or when I need another example of Klein's wild accusations and manufactured sources.

Feb 11, 2008

From the Reader Mail Page

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Recent articles of note:



Philip R. Klein has published another purported message from a reader:

Mr. Kline (we swear this is how we got it),

My husband and I are both former English teachers right here in Southeast Texas. We read your site everyday. May we suggest that you go take some grammar classes at Lamar to brush up on your skills. While you are there you can invite your friends at the Klineblogspot site. They too need some help.

This is obviously another manufactured message, unless local school districts are now hiring English teachers who are ignorant of basic punctuation such as question marks and commas. I counted six errors.

As one example, consider the confusion between noun and adjective in this message. "Everyday" is an adjective, while "every day" is the proper reference in this instance. Most kids who did their homework during high school grammar know this, while most English teachers who don't collect unemployment.

Furthermore, this is not symptomatic of any known form of dyslexia, such as dysographia. Rather, it's symptomatic of someone who never learned basic grammar fundamentals.

Since skills in reading, writing, and comprehension are all closely related, one can easily see why Philip is generally confused over most political issues.

On a related subject, isn't it interesting that most of Philip's mail seems to be about either Operation Kleinwatch or the KFDM Talk Forum?

"Not Workable" (TWI Again)

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Recent articles of note:



I enjoy Philip R. Klein's late night postings, when his proclivity for typing while intoxicated is very apparent:

"That damn think must of cost over $15 million to build."

"We think it might be a little more of a problem than is at face value."

"However, we also feel that to tear down a just fine $12,000 structure..."

"YMBL seems to be out of favor with commissioners court. Case and point..."

That's "case in point," Philip.

Regarding the subject matter of this article, Philip is waxing hysterical over a hypothetical scenario. Here's another take on the issue from Kevin McCarthy, who would also like to see a more substantive information than Philip's manufactured sources.

We'll revisit this in the future if idle speculation turns to serious discussion, or when I need another example of Klein's wild accusations and manufactured sources.

Feb 10, 2008

On Proper Citations

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Recent articles of note:

On Philip R. Klein's page ostensibly devoted to reader mail, he attributes the following item to one of those 212 messages he purportedly received last week:

"Tell us about all of these hidden taxes you keep talking about. Put your money where your mouth is you blow hard."

The similarities in mangled grammar between Philip's writing and this message are clear; readers can draw their own conclusions about the origins of this "reader mail." This is further corroborated by comparing the text of this message with the title of one of my previous articles on Operation Kleinwatch:

Putting Philip's Money Where His Mouth Is!

Without acknowledging the original source, this "reader mail" is a transparent attempt at answering a question that I've posed on several occasions regarding a fictitious statistic that Philip frequently quotes:

There are some that may try to tell you that you are not taxed but maybe 30% of your total income.

That is a lie. You are taxed over 60% of your total income. And you cannot even comprehend it.

Readers will notice a common device used by Philip - when he can't provide documentation to substantiate his own wingnut statements, he claims "that is a lie." See this article for another example.

The actual figure for 2007 is quite different, according to the Tax Foundation:

In percentages, government at all levels now takes 32.7 percent of the nation's income.

Readers can find full documentation in Special Report 152 from the Tax Foundation. For those readers who only need to corroborate my statistic, the report's Executive Summary is here.

Since Philip frequently cites this spurious statistic, I've debunked Philip's "same old think, over and over and over again," on other occasions:

As corroboration for his statement, Philip has copied and pasted a suspect laundry list of fees, business costs, taxes, and unrelated items with no comment. Really, Philip, is this the best you can do?

Philip's ignorance of the basic concepts behind simple taxation is apparent; consider this item from his list:

  • Interest Expense

Interest expense isn't a tax or a governmental fee; rather, it's the amount reported by a company or individual as an expense for borrowed money. In defense of Philip, this subject is somewhat more advanced than the simple concepts of Holiday Pay and Comp Time.

As another example, consider this item:

  • Septic Permit Tax

This is a fee, not a tax. Septic permit fees are generally used to cover the costs of regulating septic tanks and enforcing local codes specific to sewage disposal. While most suburban Americans will never pay this fee, it's quite necessary for many rural communities. Without this fee, the alternative is unregulated raw sewage.

Philip also included this item as an example of a tax:

  • IRS Penalties

If IRS penalties for late payments are included as a tax, then Philip's list should have included fines for speeding, littering, jaywalking, and impersonating a federal officer.

These are only a few examples of the items on Philip's list about which he's confused.

Bottom Line: This confused laundry list does not support Philip's spurious statistic. The correct figure of 32.7 percent for fiscal year 2007 came from the Tax Foundation (see links above). Can Philip provide a real citation (beyond "sources who demand anonymity") for his statement that "you are taxed over 60% [sic] of your total income."

Any comments, buddy?

Nitwit Tidbits

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Note: For my response to "Reader Mail : [sic] "Answering The DOKS Questions," see article below.

In his Nitwit Tidbits this week, Philip writes:

Copy The Review - Lot's of mail this week. So we opened a new page and we will answer the mail that is of interest...to us. The count is an amazing 212 emails. Thanks.

Of the 212, only two were actual messages, while the rest were spam for weight loss products.

Sheffield - Let us be clear. (1) We do not live in Hardin County, (2) this is about a man that has applied for a job with the taxpayers, (3) 800 + cases? Re-filed? Please.

Philip hasn't mentioned Justice David Gaultney's finding which definitively settled the issue.  Much ado about nothing.

The Firemen - More on this next week. We will do winners and losers. It is over. Thank goodness.

This comes after claiming that Firefighters and the City of Beaumont were "very close" to a settlement before Thanksgiving. Actually, firefighters and city officials had not resumed negotiations at that time. 

I'm sure Philip's take on "winners and losers" will demonstrate this same shrewd insight.

SPIN OF THE WEEK - Now the County Judge says there is $250k in damage to the outdoor theater at Ford Park. Now the County Judge says lets tear the mother down. The cost? Read on.

I couldn't agree more; this is a big spin by Philip Klein, who's now defending Ford Park, the biggest boondoggle in the history of Jefferson County.  On February 8, 2005, Philip wrote:

Let's build [Ford Park] up and sell it...Just another government program that failed.

Philip is typically speaking from both sides of his mouth. 

School Bonds - Remember the statement - once they have your tax dollars they want more. Remember the legislature kicked in the property tax decrease on school districts? Well they have figured out that if they do bonds they do not have to lower your rates and can double their fun. Taxpayers screwed again.

Actually, it's an indictment of the piecemeal manner in which the State of Texas is financing public education. When state legislators established the Property Tax Relief Fund and mandated that school districts lower their tax rates by one-third, they tried to replace the missing funding with an expanded business tax and silly measures like new taxes on cigarettes and used car sales. Unfortunately, the shortfall between the old funding and this new model is approximately $5.2 billion, not including escalating costs of education which were not considered in this new model.

Philip is arguing that school districts should not build new schools, renovate old ones, raise teachers' salaries, or seek funds to cover inflationary costs for which the Texas Legislature failed to provide, so that voters can receive the maximum tax cut and our legislators can receive the maximum political benefit.

I suppose this is understandable for someone who has to take his pants off to count to 21 and flunked out of college after two or three semesters. 

Mark Blanton - One of the finest men in blue. And he is doing his best. Maybe some support from Council?

Maybe some editorial content of interest?

Sinegal - Wow. He stood up to the bad boys in the democratic party. And won! It took a visiting judge to do it. Hey ..... a thought here at the Review. Maybe the Review should ask for a visiting judge....like from Harris County?

Typically, Klein blames the "bad boys in the democratic [sic] party," but those orders came from the good Republicans in the Texas Secretary of State's office. From the Beaumont Enterprise:

When [Party executive director Joe Deshotel Jr] discovered the missing information on the forms, he contacted election lawyers at the Texas Secretary of State's office, who said the application was "fatally flawed."

They told Deshotel the party had two options: to remove Sinegal's name from the ballot or to leave it on, but not count the votes.

This is an example of what happens when one forms opinions by reading the headlines, but not the substance of the story.

Approval Ratings - The President at 30% and the congress at 21%? So the American people have lost faith in the their government? It gave us an idea. We are going to do a poll on County Government and see what their approval rating is. Should be fun.

I'm sure it will be funny!  In my previous article, Klein Political Relations and Bait Shop, I pointed out some problems in PRK's so-called "polls."   Most people who've taken a basic course in statistics will immediately recognize that Klein's polling procedures follow no known statistical model.

Since Philip's confidence interval was not readily apparent, I had to calculate his Margin of Error by comparing Philip's findings with the actual result. Philip's extrapolated MoE was about ±20 percentage points. 

Here's a suggestion for Philip: in this new poll, use a dartboard and blindfold for more accurate results.

McCain - Okay...stop the emails. Please.

Philip still hasn't mentioned this comment from August 3, 2007:

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

Or, his prediction on the winner of the 2008 Presidential Election:

Welcome, Mr. President - Fred Thompson joins the race.

We can always depend upon Philip to do the right thing:

We stand up and say we are wrong when we are wrong.

Any comments, buddy?