Sep 30, 2010

Reductio Ad Absurdum

1 comments
On Monday, Philip R. Klein wrote:
As three of the board members in the BISD begin to bang the drum - the investigation into why a Jefferson County Deputy Sheriff let BISD transportation director Clifton Guillory off - or at least turn him over to BISD police for action - is now closed.
So says our source at BISD.

"There is no active investigation. Mr. Guillory is now an ex-employee and the matter is closed," so says our source.
I didn't mention at the time that Philip was clearly confused over who was conducting the investigation. Either Klein invented this BISD source, or the source knew Philip would print erroneous information without verifying. I suspect that most people will immediately see the breakdown in Klein's logic, where he misleads readers with the notion that the BISD has investigative jurisdiction over a Jefferson County Sheriff's Deputy.

According to the Examiner, The Jefferson County Sheriff's Office conducted the internal investigation, not the BISD:
The Jefferson County Sheriff's Department has opened an internal affairs investigation after one of its deputies told supervisors that Clifton Guillory, the head of the Beaumont Independent School District Transportation Department did not appear intoxicated when he was stopped driving a BISD vehicle near the Whataburger on Dowlen Road.
Today, Sheriff Mitch Wood announced the results of the investigation, according to the Beaumont Enterprise:
BEAUMONT, Texas - Two deputies involved in a controversial Sept. 4 traffic stop involving former Beaumont transportation director Clifton Guillory will get a one-day suspension without pay for failure to follow department policy and procedures, said Jefferson County Sheriff Mitch Woods.
So, the final tally specifically concerning the Guillory incident: two sheriff's deputies suspended without pay for a day and one transportation director retired, possibly under pressure.

Like many others in Beaumont, I see profligate spending policies and many problems with the current administration of the Beaumont ISD. The idea of a purchasing agent who personally declares Chapter 7 bankruptcy makes as much sense to me as a former bankrupt fast food magnate declaring himself a political consultant.

Sep 29, 2010

But Wait II ! [sic]

0 comments
Philip R. Klein's hypocrisy is showing in his latest posting on the Southeast Texas Political Review:
A reader wanted to write a comment on the story the Enterprise posted regarding the guilty plea of Tamraka McGriff. So he tried but was blocking. Thinking it was a problem with the server or the computer he was using he sent a note to Shelia Friedeck - the Reader Representative at the Beaumont Enterprise. She advised our reader that he could not comment and are you ready for the response she gave him :
Your request for us to turn on the comment function on the Tamraka McGriff story on BeaumontEnterprise.com was forwarded to my attention for reply.

No, sorry, we're not going to do that.

While we would like to think that our Web site could be a place for intelligent discussion and exchange of reader opinions, unfortunately in the past couple of weeks it has become a place for people to post anonymous personal attacks, comments supporting bigotry, and, in some cases inappropriate language. Rather than assign one or more employees to monitor this story on a full-time basis to eliminate such comments, we've made the decision simply not to allow comments.

We would, however, invite you to write a letter to the editor, which, assuming it meets criteria for publication, we would be happy to publish and to post on-line.

Sheila Friedeck,
Reader Representative,
The Beaumont Enterprise,
409-838-2846
Holy crap - did the Beaumont Enterprise just hit the edit button on the comments from the public? DId they just say that they did not have the employees to monitor the comments? Is the anger that bad and they are not tapping in on it? Are they that stupid? Or do they have an agenda? Are they that left wing where they are so sensitive that the 1st amendment does not apply to the Beaumont Enterprise?
From the Southeast Texas Political Review on Oct 6, 2008:
The Talk Back Line is dead. We have gotten so many attacks on the list - from those who have tried to get a copy, those who have attempted to sign in with names that are not true and actually two hackers that did get in and dissolve the list and names. It has simply gotten to be to much work to monitor the personal attacks. Okay - democrats - you win. It is shut down. Whoever you are in Oregon - do not be surprised when they come knocking.
No comment necessary. "Someone turn off the lights on the way out the door please!"

Breaking Story

3 comments
Philip R. Klein shows confusion over what constitutes a "breaking story" in his latest posting on the Southeast Texas Political Review:
The Southeast Texas Political Review has learned that the Examiner and ace reporter will break a story on Thursday's Edition regarding another employee of BISD that has been charged in federal court with a crime and will enter a plea this week
In the real world, both KFDM and the Beaumont Enterprise have the story up as of 1:30 PM:
The top stories on The Examiner's site include two breaking stories concerning the deaths of Coach Curtis Barbay and West Orange-Stark senior quarterback Reggie Garrett. See for yourself:

Philip's bias is showing again.

Sep 28, 2010

The Never-Ending Lawsuit

1 comments
So far this week, Philip R. Klein has rehashed old news, predicted the imminent collapse of Kirbyville, and attacked the integrity of the Jefferson County Sheriff's office, Eddie Arnold, and Mark Domingue. This is standard fare for the Southeast Texas Political Review; in Philip's terms, "more of the same old think, over and over and over again." No comment necessary.

On his Reader Mail page, PRK posted this purported message from Port Arthur (Klein's crude language has been edited):
Last Updated : 09/28/2010 09:23:24 AM

From Port Arthur : "I was reading the "other site" that shows the truth about you and your web site. Are you too scared to answer them you liar?"


Answer : Well, first, thank you for writing me a note - your email comes from a wash email site - so you obviously don't have the guts ([--]) to sign your name. Since I do not read the "other site" I have no idea what you are talking about. We don't care what they write - but it does help us in our lawsuit when they get so mad they make mistakes. Corruption breeds political mistakes. And history is history.
Shortly afterwards, Klein posted this update to his lawsuit page:
September 2010

An expansion of the lawsuit is undertaken including Tortuous Interference with a business relationship. Two new parties area added. The petition to be filed with in two weeks in Federal Court.
Philip made this claim despite the stay issued by the Texas Supreme Court on June 4, 2010. This lawsuit can't be "expanded" into any court, federal or otherwise, until the Texas Supreme Court issues an opinion.

In reality, there is very little truth on Klein's "Lawsuit Page." As another example, consider this contradictory and misleading statement:
No appeal is filed with the 9th circuit in the time limits of law. Google informs counsel for Klein that they will not comply with the Rule 11 agreement previously signed by Google and its legal Counsel until the court can rule on the notice of appeal.
Sam and I filed our appeal with the Ninth Court of Appeals in Beaumont, not the "9th Circuit," which is a federal court of appeals in San Francisco. Likewise, if no appeal were filed within the time limits, why would Google wait until the court "can rule on the notice of appeal?"

More realistically, Klein is suffering from another meltdown after making wild and unsubstantiated claims concerning KBTV-4 and their editorial policy.

Sep 25, 2010

Open Message to the KBTV-4 News Director

14 comments
From: Operation Kleinwatch [operationkleinwatch@operamail.com]
To: Angel San Juan [asanjuan@nexstar.tv]
Subject: An Open Message to Angel San Juan
Date: Sat, 25 Sep 2010 15:24:08 +0000

Dear Angel,

During his speech to the Port Arthur Rotary Club on Thursday, Sept. 23, 2010, Philip R. Klein claimed that you called him just before the meeting to personally thank Philip for exposing the BISD incident concerning Curtis Guillory.

I mentioned this in my Nitwit Tidbits™ article this week.

During this portion of his long-winded speech, Klein also claimed that he asked you why Channel 4 ignored the story.  According to the Fox 4 KBTV political analyst (I use the term loosely), you stated that Channel 4 couldn't report on the story because of pressure from your sponsors.

Is this true? If so, isn't this a public admission of biased reporting? I think some explanation of Klein's comment and clarification of KBTV's editorial policy is needed.

To verify that this is indeed a credible inquiry, I've posted this identical message on my blog.

Sincerely,

Gus Pillsbury
Operation Kleinwatch

Nitwit Tidbits™

16 comments
"We don't know about you," wrote Philip R. Klein, "but we are tired! Here we go though."

See the legal notice below. I've rearranged Philip's Nitwit Tidbits today, because I've criticized Mike McNeil in the past for not challenging Klein's bizarre statements. Mike deserves praise this week. 

The morning host did an excellent job in exposing PRK's cynicism. McNeil caught Klein contradicting himself, even though Klein aggressively interrupted Mike throughout the interview.  See for yourself and watch Klein's pointing fingers, logical fallacies, and argumentative tone.

Paraphrasing Robert Duvall, I love the sight of spit flying early in the morning...it looks like idiocy.
Review Record Week - We had ANOTHER record hit week at the Review. Thanks to all you readers. Wow!
Not according to Philip's statement during the Fox 4 KBTV interview. Mike even got a double zinger in by misspelling Klein's URL and a reference to PRK's wild claims about traffic to the SETPoliticalReview.com:
Mike McNeil: SETXPoliticalReview.com, (looking at Philip) uuuhhhh, a million hits a day?

Philip:
(chuckling) no, no, no, no, we're about uh, 20,000 page views a day now.
On Sept. 4, he claimed:
We have just reviewed the numbers for August of 2010. It was THE BIGGEST month in the 17 year history of the Southeast Texas Political Review. To date, we have seen just over 374,000 direct hits into our default page (Front Page) and 1.6 million page views. 
Klein's own numbers concerning page views don't add up.

Here's the math:
  • 1.6 million page views / 4 weeks = 400,000 page views per week
  • 20,000 page views per day X 7 days = 140,000 page views per week
In Mike McNeil's interview with Philip on November 11, 2009, Philip claimed:
Today, in 19, I mean in 2009, uh, we have, uh, direct entry hits of about 395,000. As of today, and 2.3 million uh web page views. So that means some people use us as their browser and when they turn their computer on in the morning, they come right to us. But we've had about 2.3 million hits this year, web views.
From Klein's context here, "web views" and "hits" mean page views (Warning for the simple-minded: advanced arithmetic ahead):

Here's the math:
  • 2.3 million page views / [10 months X 4 weeks] = 57,500 page views per week
  • 57,500 page views per week / 7 days = 8,214 page views per day 
Philip R. Klein just made it up. For a better estimate of real traffic, see the SETPR traffic report from Sept. 4 here.
Bad Week For Cops - One is convicted, one gets thrown under the bus and the other gets his car stolen? Go figure....full moon?
The full moon may also explain why PRK seems especially manic this week. See this story and the Nitwit Tidbit below.
Bad Week For Political People - The Sheriff is under political fire, the BISD school board is either hiding under their desks and Port Arthur City Management is asking questions on how a $50k cop car gets stolen?
The Sheriff is not under "political fire," Trustee Tom Neild with the Beaumont ISD is actively investigating the Guillory incident, and I'm sure there many others asking questions about a stolen patrol car.

For perspective over the past three days, stolen police cruisers are not uncommon. My favorite: In Quinwood, SC, this week, thieves stole two safes from the city hall and made their getaway in a stolen patrol unit. Times are tough all over, not just in Jefferson County.
Fox News - Has the video in New York of the pull over - and may be doing a story. Wow.
Presumably Philip isn't talking about KBTV. He also claimed Fox News had a team in town to investigate 27,000 Hardin County cases that had to be "refilled." 
KBMT Drops The Ball - We haven't said much about this - but KBMT is the only station to have the raw video of the Getz incident. They had it posted. Took it down. On the request of BISD management? We called KBMT news director three times - refused to speak with us! Refused to answer our questions???? Really?
Stupidity: the Channel 4 political analyst (I use the term loosely) wonders why the Channel 12 News Director won't return his calls concerning an internal decision.
Holy Crap - KFDM WOKE UP? We wonder if their news reporters contact is going to be renewed from BISD? You know how it is - you are with us or......
There is no such thing as a "news reporters [sic] contact [being] renewed."
Is That Why - That is the rumor - is that why KBMT pulled the raw video?
Gibberish.
Sorry Rank and File Cops - We are sorry to say it - because we support rank and file cops - but BPD has to let go the officer for the Class A mis. They have to.
More accurately, Philip R. Klein supports cops only when it's personally expedient and coincides with his own selfish agenda.
Liar - The Beaumont Enterprise says we are lying about them becoming a part of the Houston Chronicle. Okay. Let's watch.
Liar - I'm still watching for this (from Death Rattle, Jan. 15, 2009):
Backroom sources say that Hearst will try to sell off the paper within the next year after getting their numbers stabilized and at least hitting bottom on the decrease of subscribers. In the wings are the owners of the "Examiner" we are told.
Let's watch.
Christopher Claussen - Wants Getz to apologize - Getz shoots back - we all get a good giggle. Claussen is off his rocker.
That's Christopher Clausen, not "Claussen," and Philip R. Klein is a demagogue who tried to insert his own inflammatory and personal biases into the debate again. 

See Getz' reply to Clausen's article, and another opinion from The Enterprise blog The Bayou that supported Getz.  Apparently, both Philip and The Bayou missed the significance of Getz' citation, Leventhal v. Vista Unified School District, a California case that challenged California's Brown Act.

In Texas, a governmental body may limit comment since there is no inherent right to comment at open public meetings. See Op. Tex. Att'y Gen. No. JC-0169 (2000). If a governmental body allows members of the public to speak at its public meetings, it may adopt reasonable rules consistent with relevant provisions of law allowing them to do so. Id. (citing Op. Tex. Att'y Gen. No. H-188 (1973); Op. Tex. Att'y Gen. No. LO-96-111 (1996)).

Ultimately, the question isn't whether "Claussen" [sic] is "off his rocker" or even who is owed an apology, but whether portions of the Texas Open Meetings Act are unconstitutional.  And that's why this whole issue will die in the local press, else Getz would pursue this in court.

The bottom line: Getz skillfully manipulated the Beaumont ISD board into a ton of free publicity for the BETTER petition and Klein is an idiot.
Homicide - Another one in PA Town. Drug oriented we are told. TELL US NO!  Not in Jefferson County!
After speaking at the Port Arthur Rotary Club, Philip is again denigrating Port Arthur. So how did his speech go?
Thank You - Rotary club of Port Arthur. Klein speaks - controversy - but all enjoyed. A good group.
Philip R. Klein didn't replace his out-of-date Labor Day editorial with his speech to the Port Arthur Rotary Club as is his standard operating procedure. In the past, Klein even posted speeches he never gave to the Golden Triangle Republican Women and the graduating class of 2008.

According to hearsay and rumor concerning a purported digital video that may or may not exist, most of Klein's speech was about his favorite subject: Philip R. Klein. Since there may be copyright issues, I can't post this video.

However, here are some of the low points:
  • Philip R. Klein claimed that Angel San Juan called just before the meeting to personally thank Philip for exposing the BISD issue concerning Curtis Guillory, since Channel 4 couldn’t report the story because of pressure from their sponsors. Klein has now publicly claimed that Fox 4 KBTV biases its own newscasts, based on its advertising roster.  Any comment, Mr. San Juan?

  • With a straight face, Klein claimed the mission of the Southeast Texas Political Review is to "report the truth." Since the SETPR doesn’t have sponsors, PRK can report the truth.

  • People call Philip regularly with offers to buy the Southeast Texas Political Review for millions of dollars.

  • Typically, Philip claimed that Jefferson County is the most corrupt county in history . 

  • The Port Arthur unemployment rate is 20 percent, but Klein later told the club to invite him back in a year when the rate would rise to 14.9 percent.

  • Philip claimed to be the front man for President George H.W. Bush during his re-election campaign. 

  • He told an anecdote about meeting "The Man" while riding on a “cart” with his children. In this case, cart meant an elevator when Klein couldn't remember the correct term for the device that moves people between floors in a multi-story building. “Remember that, Caroline?”

  • Klein claimed to have been on Air Force One several times.

  • Since losing President George H.W. Bush's reelection campaign, Klein claimed that he has assisted in several other campaigns as consultant. He didn't identify the campaigns, probably because if true, his candidates lost those elections, too. Perhaps Bugs Coe and Carl Griffith?

  • He claimed that he continues to talk to President George H.W. Bush regularly, even though there is an unsubstantiated rumor concerning Bush's appearance during the Spindletop Centennial. When asked about Philip R. Klein, the former president purportedly said, "Philip Who?"

  • Philip also claimed that he talks to Karl Rove at least once a week.

  • PRK told the Rotary Club that he has to sit in the back of restaurants, because people engage him wherever he goes. I suspect the real reason is because the host or hostess placed him near the kitchen to keep him out of sight, and it's easier for Klein to see who's throwing the empty bottles. 

  • The fat detective also claimed he was personally trained by both the FBI and CIA.

  • As a business consultant, Klein claimed that he helped an unnamed national business from going bankrupt. This may be true; I suspect he spent a lot of money during the recession on food from Kroger, HEB, and Dairy Queen.
PRK talked so much that the club had to cut him off when they ran out of time. Because Klein rattled on and on, there was no time for Q&A, where members could question Philip. After his speech, however, Philip got a standing ovation from one person. Roughly (my estimate) 10 to 15 other people offered lackluster applause.

More significantly, Klein asked how many people read his site in the club.  When no one raised their hands, Philip told the club they were lying.

How did Klein know this? Because PRK told them he tracks visitors to his site. I recommend using an anonymous server when visiting The Southeast Texas Political Review.

LEGAL NOTICE:
I hereby claim "Nitwit Tidbits" as a trademark used to promote Operation Kleinwatch.

Sep 23, 2010

PRK's Media Conspiracy

10 comments
In yesterday's article on former BISD Transportation Director Clifton Guillory, Philip R. Klein wrote:
It what can be considered as a shock video - the Southeast Texas Political Review has obtained and viewed a copy of the video dash cam recording as investigators at the Jefferson County SO continue their investigation of the event.

The shocking video can be seen post on the Enterprise web site :
http://www.beaumontenterprise.com/local-video/
Following standard editorial policy of the SET Political Review, Klein hysterically distorts the truth:
In brief description that can only be called sickening - the police unit comes upon the Ford F-250 truck and it is weaving and hitting curbs. The driver is obviously impaired. As the unit pulls over the truck - which has no license plate and is a brand new Ford F250 Diesel Truck - the officer gets out and does his routine questioning.
The term "sickening" is subjective; others may be sickened by an obese, self-described political consultant on local TV.

Klein is clearly lying when he states the truck has no license plate. While the glare from the patrol car headlights make reading the numbers difficult, the plate itself is obvious.

Likewise, the truck isn't hitting curbs, but is definitely swerving. The rest of Klein's article follows the same high standards of journalistic integrity.

Not mentioned by Klein: BISD launched an investigation and issued a news release before Klein published his article yesterday. Klein did not reference this:
After reviewing video released today of a Jefferson County Sheriff Department’s recent traffic stop involving Clifton Guillory, director of transportation for Beaumont Independent School District, Superintendent Dr. Carrol Thomas has opened an investigation into the matter.
Depending on the results of the investigation, Guillory’s punishment could range from a reprimand, suspension with pay, suspension without pay or termination."
While Klein was preparing for his speech before the Port Arthur Rotary Club today, Guillory ended the investigation by resigning.
BEAUMONT - BISD's Transportation Director announced his retirement Thursday, one day after the Jefferson County Sheriff's Office released a videotape of a traffic stop in a district truck, in which [Curtis] Guillory admits having been drinking alcohol with friends before he was pulled over. He was also driving with an expired license.
While Klein was boring Rotary Club members, Board Member Tom Neild sent this email to Dr. Carrol Thomas through Janice Teel:
From: Tom Neild
Sent: Thursday, September 23, 2010 1:03 PM
To: Janice Teel
Cc: Jessie Haynes
Subject: Questions from my constituents and media

Dear Dr. Thomas. 

I have been asked the following questions by constituents and media who are demanding answers regarding the Guillory incident.  Please forward me the following information:
  1. Copy of the BISD Police Dept. policy and procedure manual.
  2. Exact date Jefferson County tape was given to BISD.
  3. List of BISD employees that drive BISD vehicles home and are these vehicles marked with permanent BISD signs.
  4. If these employees drive BISD vehicles how personal use monitored and charged ?( taxes, gas, insurance, tires, etc.)
  5. Will Mr. Guillory receive a full benefit package from the BISD?
  6. Please furnish the original BISD Police report from Sept. 4th.
  7. What is the check and balance on verification that BISD drivers have valid Texas drivers licenses.
  8. When is Mr. Guillory’s retirement effective.
  9. I would also like to request an independent investigation conducted regarding this incident. I would like to request this for board action.
Thanks,

Tom Neild
While Klein was napping after his power speech before the Rotary Club, Jessie Haynes released the following statement and documents:
From: Jessie Haynes
Sent: Thursday, September 23, 2010 3:38 PM'
To: Multiple recipients

Several of you have requested this information.
You can see the attachments here, which include statements from BISD Police Chief Clydell Duncan, Officer D. Janise, and Sgt. David Hall.

Readers can draw their own conclusions about what all of this means, but I believe that Philip R. Klein, the Southeast Texas Political Review, and the Port Arthur Rotary Club conspired to divert attention away from these facts with PRK's speech at the Holiday Inn.

As further evidence, none of this is mentioned on the Southeast Texas Political Review as of 6:15 pm this evening. In his last posting at 5:36 pm after waking from his nap, Klein admits publishing hearsay and rumor concerning another issue:
The rumor is out - there may be a settlement coming in the cop beating case now that there is a conviction. According to sources inside the City of Beaumont - discussions will begin this next week.
The fix is in by the Southeast Texas Political Review.

Sep 22, 2010

What's Wrong with this Picture (Part 3)

11 comments
In his appearance today on KBTV Fox 4 Good Day, Philip R. Klein stated that Jefferson County and BISD officials took advantage of the tragic death of  West Orange-Stark football player Reggie Garrett during a football game last Friday:
I think when they saw that all the focus on the media was attention over here, they said 'nnnn, we're just gonna, we're just gonna try and get this in" and I think that's just what they did. Two political hot buttons.
Nice try, but the incident at the BISD board meeting involving attorney Mike Getz happened on Sept. 16, 2010. Garret died on Sept. 17, 2010.

To his credit, Mike McNeil tried to address Klein's blatant demagoguery, but PRK began gesticulating wildly and interrupting the host.

Note to Channel 4: Have you ever considered cutting Klein's mike off or airing lost dog reports instead?

Ike Lawsuit

2 comments
Philip R. Klein wrote in this posting:
The Southeast Texas Political Review has learned that a lawsuit has been filed against multi-plaintiffs including elected officials of Jefferson County for lying about knowledge of elevations in sections of Jefferson County post hurricane IKE two years ago.
Nooooooooo.....the media is going to cover this story.....?
Actually, this story appeared on KFDM Channel 6 last week:
KFDM News has learned a number of families in the Labelle-Fannett area have filed a lawsuit against the State of Texas, Jefferson County and other defendants, claiming their actions led to devastating consequences after Hurricane Ike.
Even though he's a veteran of at least 40 lawsuits by my count, Klein still doesn't know the difference between a plaintiff and a defendant:
The allegation of the suit is that multi-plaintiffs including Judge Ron Walker, Jeff Brannick and Patrick Swain attempted to cover up the surveyor issues in the County Road Estates claiming conspiracy to violate statutory protections. In their claim - the plaintiffs claim that Walker and Swain attempted to cover up the fact that the county knew the benchmark certifications were wrong and did nothing to correct it before Hurricane IKE.
According to Philip, Plaintiffs Judge Ron Walker, Jeff Brannick, and Patrick Swain claim that Walker and Swain engaged in a cover-up. Presumably, this makes sense to Philip R. Klein.

His "anonymous sources" are even more confused:
Sources close to the case tell the Review from Austin this morning that : "This case will expose how Jefferson County works. It is a corrupt county that is built on nothing but cover ups. The case was filed in Jefferson County because the plaintiffs could not get a fair trial in Jefferson County because of the corruption."
The case was filed in Jefferson County because the plaintiffs couldn't get a fair trial in Jefferson County. The last time Philip claimed a lawsuit will expose corruption in Jefferson County, no lawsuit was ever filed:
The Review has been told that the families will expose the workings of the District Attorney during a civil suit that has been filed in Jefferson County.
I suspect the real reason this case was filed in Travis County has to do with mandatory venue requirements in the Rules of Texas Civil Procedure. To be revisited

Sep 21, 2010

Real Readers Write

8 comments
In a recent article, I commented on some issues concerning Beaumonters Embracing Transition Towards Election Reform (BETTER)
  1. Since the BISD board of trustees originally contained two at-large representatives, I'm not sure if this is reform or an attempt to return to the original structure for administering the district efficiently.

  2. The original number of petition signatures needed to get this referendum on the ballot changed.
 I received the following email yesterday from Mike Neil, one of the organizers of the group.
----- Original message -----
From: "Michael Neil" 
To: "Operation Kleinwatch"
Date: Mon, 20 Sep 2010 19:49:51 -0700 (PDT)
Subject: Explanation for the change in numbers needed by BETTER

I read on your site that BETTER changed it's numbers: "More importantly, the group has changed its numbers."

We did in fact change our numbers. The original list of registered voters given to us by the county included registered voters in voting precincts that had more than one school district in it. We also asked about registered voters who have moved and are still on the list we received. We were told that there is a suspense list for this type of registered voters and those people on that list were not counted when figuring the 15% of voters needed.

Both of these situations decreased the number of registered voters significantly. It lowered the number that we needed to sign the petition (15% of registered voters) by around 3000.

Here is a link to the story in the Enterprise.

You also said: "Since the BISD board of trustees originally contained two at-large representatives, I'm not sure if this is reform or an attempt to return to the original structure for administering the district efficiently."

Our efforts are about better representation. We are hoping that the results of our efforts is reform through a board of trustees that knows it is accountable back to the voters.

Best regards,

Mike Neil
BETTER Co-Chairman
While this issue is a bit beyond the scope of my blog, Mike succinctly addressed the two issues that I raised. His message deserved publication.

As lagniappe, I've included the following excerpt taken from a Texas School Performance Review of the Beaumont ISD and its board of trustees. There are two sections, here and here
Governance and Management

An overwhelming conclusion drawn from the community input and other on-site activities is that the BISD board of trustees has not been effective in leading the district. Texas Education Agency monitors, assigned by the Commissioner of Education, remain in the district after more than 2 years.

Micro-management practices by the board were cited by individuals; board members admitted to overextending their bounds on certain issues. District history reflects that the ethnic make-up of the board has significant impacts on how BISD is governed. Too often, board decisions appear to be based on ethnic and cultural issues rather than doing what's best for BISD children.
Here's the rest of the story: this performance review was conducted in 1995. Many of the problems noted in this report still plague the district 15 years later. The referendum that BETTER seeks to place on the ballot makes a lot of sense to me.

Sep 20, 2010

A PRK Primer for the Port Arthur Rotary Club

6 comments
Philip R. Klein's speech before the Port Arthur Rotary Club is scheduled for Thursday. In the spirit of objectivity, here's a short primer on some of Philip's previous comments about Port Arthur.

I found these purported letters from readers to Philip particularly revealing:
From Port Arthur : "Please stop kicking us here in Port Arthur. Please sir. We are trying to fix it."

Answer : Really? You really said that? We are not kicking anyone. We are just being honest. And if you are trying to fix it....never mind.
From Nederland : "I am interested in your thoughts on how Port Arthur is doing?"

Answer : Doing with what? You have to be more specific. If you want an over all grade? An "F".
The following list is not intended to be comprehensive, since Philip disparages the city almost every week. From the SET Political Review [Warning: Klein's crude and vulgar language has not been edited]:
PORT ARTHUR TEXAS SHOULD BE FLUSHED DOWN THE TOILET.
 Port Arthur is the turd in the toilet bowl we call Southeast Texas.
Who cares about Port Arthur. The place is dump. Crime and unemployment is out of control. And there are more checks cut in welfare and food stamp assistance per square foot. It is a welfare city. So - who cares about Port Arthur?
Sources in Austin tell the Review that [State Senator Robert Nichols] has opened warfare on the City of Port Arthur. He has staff looking over issues that "cover Port Arthur."
This election was never about what was right. Because there is nothing "right" about Port Arthur. In fact - it is fair to say that Port Arthur Texas may be one of the most corrupt cities in Texas.
The talk is this weekend it will be family fun time in Port Arthur with a bunch of visitors to the biggest hunk of pork you have ever seen - called Port Arthur Texas.
Pct. 3 in Jefferson County is made up of dysfunctional people in a dysfunctional place called Port Arthur, Texas.
The citizens of Port Arthur put on a gun battle show over the weekend. Three shootings in two days according to media reports.
Come invest YOUR BUSINESS in Port Arthur. Where everything is wonderful if you are wearing a bullet proof vest.
Pleasure Island - Let it sink into the ocean. Some more good fishing. No more tax dollars. It is dead like Port Arthur is dead. That simple.
Well - there is a joke that runs around the political community when the name Port Arthur comes up. That is : "WHAT NOW?"
What is really scary is watching Port Arthur. Over 50% of the public in Port Arthur is on government assistance?
Over 60% of the citizens are taking government dollars in Port Arthur.
Port Arthur, Texas. Where over 67% is on government assistance.
Dysfunction junction that is their function in the sleepy little town of Port Arthur!
Dead is Dead. We know Dead. And Port Arthur is dead.
Port Arthur is a dying town. With corruption everywhere.
But remember - it is Port Arthur. And frankly they simply don't get reality.
These shoppers are nothing but animals. They need to go back to their cages in Port Arthur.
Enough? It is never enough in Port Arthur! Not until someone closes the doors, turns the key and is the last out the door.
We see it as another nail in the coffin in a town called Port Arthur, Texas - in a dying county called Jefferson.
Finally A New Feature - We are taking this from the web - we hope to have it for you each week. The Real Housewives Of Port Arthur :  On the season premier of "The Real Housewives of Port Arthur" the girls visit Aunt Senphronia; little Jamaal sees a submarine; word of the new free clinic spreads; RoShonda shops for shoes; Kinesha hooks up at the laudro-mat on Bluebonnet; D'juanita enrolls at LUPA for cosmetology.
Tax money is like Rock Candy as they say in the West End of Port Arthur.
Port Arthur is a pig pen.
Let's stick with the program.
  • Port Arthur Texas - Nothing Like A Live Shooting Range?
  • Port Arthur Texas - Where Guns And Bad Guys Live!
  • Port Arthur Texas - Where The Streets Are As White As Cocaine?
Maybe this one : "Port Arthur Texas - The Hub of Corruption In Texas" - no that would be Jefferson County. Hey - wait? Maybe the commissioners could......
We love Port Arthur! We really do. It is so much fun to watch the self destruction.
Why would anybody want to go to Port Arthur?
It seems that a certain web site has done a collection on Cities in Texas that are considered "sanctuary cites."  Do you want to guess who showed up? You just knew before we said it......yes....Port Arthur, Texas.
It would be fun to bring a delegation of Chinese to Port Arthur to see what socialism has done for a once thriving city.
The mind set of the citizens of Port Arthur feel that they are owed.
Ho Ho Homeland - Attacks at Christmas time in malls? Only in Port Arthur is the joke.
Beaumont and Port Arthur are flunk mills for the "children's".
Just When You Thought They Hit Bottom - Get this...you just thought murders were bad in Port Arthur. Now they are running in and holding up hair salons. Gezzz.
The people of Port Arthur are losers.
What makes [Thurman Bartie] the frontrunner? And the answer is pretty simple. He is the front runner because he represents Port Arthur.
Ambassadors from the Hood arrived in Port Arthur to find an adoring crowd to watch the making of a video from the Hood.
And the bad news - if you want to smoke a joint, get drunk, piss on the roadside and get laid - go to Pleasure Island?  Another sign of Port Arthur...the city by the sea.......
A little common sense please? Oh....sorry.....we are talking about Port Arthur, Texas? Aren't we?
However, thinking about it........it is Port Arthur and the normal is abnormal?
Come to Port Arthur Texas. A safe haven to illegal aliens!
Robbery and Kidnapping In Port Arthur - So they strip the guy, take his money, take him for a ride naked in the trunk, and go eat at IHOP? Only in Port Arthur Texas!!!!
Frankly, Butler fit Port Arthur Texas. Crime, bad business deals and drug abuse.
And with that we will give you our ideas for the branding of Port Arthur!
  • The City with more Government dollars spent Per Square Foot
  • The Most UNSAFE City in Texas
  • Rob 'em, Shoot 'em, Stick 'em - Port Arthur, Texas
Port Arthur, Texas is a prime example of government at it's darkest. The city has failed. The school district has failed.
You know - something that the citizens of Port Arthur will understand?
I'm looking forward to the YouTube video of Philip's speech on Thursday.

Sep 19, 2010

The Week in Review (Pun Intended)

6 comments
The irony in Philip R. Klein's statement from today's posting is obvious:
The public never forgets.
And liars need good memories. Here's a recap of last week.

Racist

Read these articles on the Beaumont Enterprise and The Examiner for the real story concerning Mike Getz and the BISD board meeting.

Klein accused Dr. Carrol Thomas of racism:
Dr. Carroll Thomas gave an interview to FOX 4 and suggested that Attorney Mike Getz and the people that are pushing the district rezoning for elections to the board are using Gestapo tactics in getting signatures.

Oh...Mike Getz...is Jewish?
This claim...seems...hypocritical [sic] when considering Philip R. Klein's overt racism (no explanations needed):
You white people are fixing to get a true education on the black man and what he can do with money and lawyers. Lie, cheat and knock buildings down. What a great example for our "childrens" of the district.
These men had attitudes from the beginning - they were black.
The city council has two blacks - now they need a Mexican.
Speaking frankly, that all puts the black community and their want and dreams of running the district against the white community that wants to keep some little sense of pride of the past [sic]
The Port Arthur EDC is going to discuss how to train the "childrens" for their success in the work place.
And you folks in the black community - shut up.
How About Some Music ? : "Barack the 'Magic Negro'"
Ward 4 clean up set for Sat. How about sending in the SWAT team for a real good cleaning?
In the article, Klein wrote:
The story starts last night when KBMT TV got on tape, which they have now pulled the unedited version (raw video), an incident where Beaumont Lawyer Mike Getz was addressing the board and reading an editorial from this weeks Examiner. While reading the editorial and trying to give his opinion to the board - the Board President called him down, ordered the mics be turned off and that Getz leave the room - which was a clear violation of Getz's first amendment rights to address the board. The board president, quoted some illegal rule that stated that a speaker could not use someone's name?
Fact Check: Ejecting Mike Getz from the meeting was not an infringement of his First Amendment rights, nor is this rule illegal. While Getz was clearly making a statement, I suspect the publicity device would have been more effective had others been waiting in line to speak, picking up where Getz left off.

Klein's wild claims only divert attention from the real issue. From the Beaumont Enterprise:
The dustup in the Beaumont Independent School District board meeting Thursday night is not over - either on the part of the school board or the attorney who was ticketed for disorderly conduct.

Michael Getz, who was reading an editorial from The Examiner which contained names of school district employees, says he will fight the ticket. Board president Woodrow Reece says he might take a look at the policy that allows speakers to address the board, and at the very least will consider whether Getz is to be allowed back in school board meetings.

The board's rule against naming specific people is not unusual, showing up in the codes governing speech at other local meetings. And speaking at all is a privilege, one that boards and councils are free under state law to revoke if they so desire.
Mike is freely exercising his First Amendment rights with media interviews about the incident. For example, see this article from The Examiner and this story from KBMT.

From the perspective of someone who is sympathetic with Getz' goal, I'm discouraged by the inconsistent statements from his group, Beaumonters Embracing Transition Towards Election Reform (BETTER).  Since the BISD board of trustees originally contained two at-large representatives, I'm not sure if this is reform or an attempt to return to the original structure for administering the district efficiently.

More importantly, the group has changed its numbers. According to the most recent article by The Examiner, Mike Getz claimed:
"We have over 10,000 signatures right now," Getz said. We only needed 9,400 to begin with. We want to make sure that we have more than enough so that we can be sure to get this on the ballot."
According to an earlier article from the Examiner
The goal of the group is to obtain about 15,000 signatures in an effort to allow voters the opportunity to decide the fate of the board's make-up in an election. They technically need only about 12,000 signatures to put the referendum on the ballot but they anticipate some of the names might be stricken from the list.
This is verified by an article in the Beaumont Enterprise:
Ninety-eight people have signed a petition with the hope of changing Beaumont ISD's school board.

Another 11,562 names are needed on the list in order for voters to decide if they want to change the school board from seven single member districts to five single member district and two at-large seats.
A reader asked Philip for a link to the Fox 4 KBTV story:
"can you get the video of the Fox 4 news interview of Thomas that your article refers to? I can't seem to find it on their web page & WE want to see it ............................... His father, the late Dr. Milton Getz, and my father, the late Ward Beckcom, served together on the PAISD board  during the time when the original desegregation busing order came down..."
I thought Doneane had better taste. I'll watch the SETPR for the link to the Channel 4 video. You can view the BISD video of Getz posted below.

Hallways

Speaking of overt racism, Philip claimed: 
Well, we got a tip and we followed up on it with some teachers who teach at Central Middle School in Beaumont, Texas. It seems there is a push on the way to name Hallways after famous black leaders. No Mexican American Leaders - No White Leaders. Just black leaders. And it has made the teachers at the school go hmmmm....

"I think it is silly to name hallways. I have never heard of such of thing," said a school district employee at Central. "What are they thinking?" - She went on to say.
Klein's statement is another blatant lie, since the subject in discussion is allowing students to name buildings, not hallways, at the Central Medical Magnet High School in Beaumont. The Central Middle School is in the Nederland ISD. Philip consistently has difficulty identifying primary issues when not repeating arguments taken from old bumper stickers.

Either Philip made this up, or the teachers who purportedly contacted Philip were having some fun at his expense.

Public

Speaking of making things up, Klein claimed the Jefferson County Commissioners were holding a public hearing on the proposed 2010-2011 budget on Wednesday, Sept. 15, 2010: 
The Southeast Texas Political Review has learned that courthouse security will be tightened in anticipation of crowds at the Jefferson County Commissioners Court as a public hearing is held on the budget. The meeting is to be held on Wednesday (tomorrow) and sources at the courthouse have told the Review that the Jefferson County Sheriffs Department has had a request by commissioners for extra security in the room and in the hallway.
Apparently, those sources at the Courthouse were having some fun at Philip's expense, since a meeting was never discussed, scheduled, or held.  This speaks volumes about Philip's sources.

As a result, the anticipated crowds that Klein referenced apparently stayed home, as did the extra security. Philip never mentioned the meeting that never happened again.

Internal Affairs

In this article, Klein stated:
The Southeast Texas Political Review has learned that the Jefferson County Sheriffs Department has launched an Internal Affairs Investigation regarding the incident involving Clifton Guillory. According to high placed sources in Jefferson County the tape of the incident was reviewed and is "questionable" regarding the decisions of the officers involved. According to sources there are two officers that are involved.
Philip posted this after the Beaumont Enterprise published this story:
An internal investigation has been launched by the Jefferson County Sheriff's Department into a traffic stop involving a Beaumont school district employee.

Jim Singletary with the Sheriff's Department said the department reviewed the video footage of the traffic stop from the deputy's camera on his car and determined an internal investigation was necessary.
Klein further claimed:
This morning the Review request [sic] through the Public Information Act a copy of the dashboard camera. According to sources the tape was reviewed and an IAD investigation was launched post the view.
The Review has agreed to wait regarding the tape after a complete and full investigation is completed. The Review has been advised that post investigation the tape will be available.
"The Review" has no choice but to wait, since active investigations are exempt from the Open Record requirements.  He's apparently under the influence of too may crime dramas, since the Jefferson County Sheriff's Office doesn't have an "IAD." There is, however, an Internal Affairs Unit.

As mentioned above, here is the BISD video of Mike Getz, as posted on the Beaumont Enterprise Hall Pass blog, who took the original video from the BISD Web TV Portal:

Sep 16, 2010

An Open Letter to Phillip Klien

9 comments
Hi, Philip;

I noticed you were crowing about a meeting with Jefferson County Commissioners this week:
PUBLIC HEARING WEDNESDAY - CROWD EXPECTED - SECURITY WILL BE TIGHT IN THE COMMISSIONERS COURT!
The Southeast Texas Political Review has learned that courthouse security will be tightened in anticipation of crowds at the Jefferson County Commissioners Court as a public hearing is held on the budget. The meeting is to be held on Wednesday (tomorrow) and sources at the courthouse have told the Review that the Jefferson County Sheriffs Department has had a request by commissioners for extra security in the room and in the hallway.
"To say it least - we are going to show up. We are going to be there. We are going to speak. We may be going down but we are going to make sure that commissioners know what they are doing is hurting the public at large. I am sick over it. And you can be assured that CLEAT and law enforcement from all over Jefferson County will never forget Eddie Arnold and what he has done. We will run a candidate. We will beat Arnold. And we will never forget how he hurt law enforcement. Even his own fellow Republicans have dumped him. And we say good. Give us a republican that we can vote for and we will help change this county," said a source inside the turmoil.
Perhaps you should update your readers on this meeting, since the rest of the media apparently ignored it!  Did your "source inside the turmoil" show up, and if so, were they the only one in the room? 

You should be ashamed of yourself for purposefully misleading your readers like this. Or is this another example of typing while drunk at 2:00 PM in the afternoon?

Sincerely,

Gus Pillsbury

Sep 15, 2010

What's Wrong with this Picture (Part Two)

6 comments
See Part One here. Posted today on the Fox 4 KBTV website:

The link to the page for Phillip Klien's current appearance is broken, but the page can be accessed here:

For two consecutive weeks,  Channel 4 has not posted the actual video.

Multiple choice:

  1. Fox 4 is whitewashing Philip by not posting his spurious statements
  2. KBTV is as inept at editing and website administration as Philip Klein
  3. Channel 4 is playing games with local bloggers 
  4. The station formerly known as KJAC is avoiding liability
  5. Write in your own answer: ______________________
  6. None of the above
  7. All of the above
I don't know the real answer, but leave a comment if you have an opinion.

In an article on the Southeast Texas Political Review yesterday, Philip referenced a puported public hearing by Jefferson County Commissioners tonight (emphasis is mine):
The Southeast Texas Political Review has learned that courthouse security will be tightened in anticipation of crowds at the Jefferson County Commissioners Court as a public hearing is held on the budget. The meeting is to be held on Wednesday (tomorrow) and sources at the courthouse have told the Review that the Jefferson County Sheriffs Department has had a request by commissioners for extra security in the room and in the hallway.
Here is the bottom line - tomorrow will be a great day. You will watch the end of two men that have drove this county into the ground. You will watch one in the beginning of the end of his public service, and you will watch two others seal themselves in their seats for as many years as they want. But really screwing the deputies. And we will watch the continuing backdoor politics of Jefferson County Texas. THE MOST CORRUPT COUNTY IN TEXAS - BAR NONE.

Another local story puts Klein's obsequious charge of corruption in Jefferson County into proper perspective. Wayne Dolcefino at KTRK/Channel 13:

BEAUMONT, TX (KTRK) -- We're following up to a 13 Undercover investigation we first broke last year. A federal grand jury appears to be close to ending its investigation into allegations of corruption by some Liberty County officials.

13 Undercover spent much of last year exposing the possible shenanigans on the hurricane trail, and now a federal grand jury is on the case.

At the Liberty County courthouse, all eyes are looking to the federal building in Beaumont on Liberty Street.
From the Cleveland Advocate:
Brown was referring to the cloud that has hung over Liberty County since March 2009 when the Cleveland Advocate/Dayton News and news partner KTRK broke a news story that some county officials may have profited from Hurricane Ike debris clean-up contracts.

At the center of the federal investigation are Liberty County Judge Phil Fitzgerald and Pct. 2 Commissioner Lee Groce, who reportedly were notified back in late 2009 that they are the targets of a federal probe.

Brown, Pct. 1 Commissioner Todd Fontenot, Pct. 3 Commissioner Melvin Hunt and Lisa Fregia, secretary of Judge Fitzgerald, are all slated to appear before the grand jury on Wednesday to answer questions about what they might know or witnessed.
Current effective tax rates (per $100):
Klein refuses to discuss the issues rationally, but panders to the fringe by peddling his misinformation to further his own personal agenda.

Sep 14, 2010

Annual Rotary Club Fruitcake Celebration

8 comments
Philip R. Klein is sensitive about the spelling of his name. From the Port Arthur Rotary Club's website:

For ticket information, contact the Port Arthur Rotary Club.

Public Notice

4 comments
From the front page of the Southeast Texas Political Review
Klein Staff Note : Mr. Klein Will Be Speaking At The Port Arthur Rotary Club On The 23rd At Noon - We Cannot Answer Regarding Open To The Public - You May Contact The Rotary Club Members For Those Answer - Thanks For The Phone Calls!
From the front page of the Southeast Texas Political Review:
PUBLIC HEARING WEDNESDAY - CROWD EXPECTED - SECURITY WILL BE TIGHT IN THE COMMISSIONERS COURT

POSTED?
From the comment section of Operation Kleinwatch:
==============================
PRESS RELEASE
==============================

Philip R. Klein has announced the formation of a new political action committee in Jefferson County, National Unity for Teaparty Sympathizers (NUTS).

A rally will be held on the steps of the Jefferson County Courthouse at 12:00 Noon Saturday, where Klein will burn a dictionary in protest of post-secondary education.

"Any education past the eighth grade is just liberal crap," stated Mr. Klein. "Two many of our young people with minds full of mush are being taught to think for themselves. I can barley read or write and it hasn't effected me one dam bit."

Local news celebrity Mike McNeil will serve as MC of the event. The public is cordially invited.
To be revisited.

Sep 13, 2010

The Silence is Deafening

9 comments
A loyal reader emailed this message to me today:
When a Channel 6 staffer left for a better job in a larger market, PRK predicted it was because of 6's impending collapse.

But when the Rappin' Weatherman quit KBTV-4 -- silence.
Philip wrote on March 26, 2010:
KFDM Loses Another One - Ashley Rodrigue is gone gone gone. It seems (according to our sources) Ashley is going to Baton Rouge (LSU Baby!) and will take a reporters job. More money - bigger market for a talented young lady. They are really bailing now.
Philip also wrote on April 16, 2010:
KFDM - Keep your ears open next week. Here come the changes. Watch for a mass exodus.
Philip also wrote on July 20, 2010
Reporter and morning Anchor Jessica Holloway has left KFDM for greener pastures according to two sources over at KFDM. She leaves as the company and the newsroom continues to struggle with cut back budgets and being pounded by the other two stations in the gathering of news.
From The SF Weekly:
'Rapping Weatherman' Nick Kosir Hired By KRON -- But He Won't Be Rapping

KRON general manager Brian Greif confirmed to SF Weekly that he has, indeed, hired Nick Kosir, the "Rapping Weatherman." But Kosir will have to find a new nickname -- and won't likely be telling viewers "It's time to rhyme" -- as he will not be rapping on KRON.

"He's been hired. He isn't going to be rapping," says Greif. "What works in his current market may not work in San Francisco. Weather is very serious to us."
Philip wrote about Kosir's exodus:
                                                                                                                                 
                                                                                                 
Nice catch from a longtime reader. Thanks!

Sep 10, 2010

Ugly Is as Ugly Does

11 comments
For the rest of Philip R. Klein's Nitwit Tidbits today, see the article below. For the playlist on Philip's iPod Nano, see this article on the Sam The Eagle Political Review.

This item deserved a dedicated posting:
Ugly - Politicos have picked the county Treasures race [sic] as being the "Ugly Race of the Year." Here is what is showing up on the web - kind of funny. Watch it come down quick.
With this personal attack on Port of Beaumont Commissioner Georgine Guillory, PRK published a pirated photo without permission from Georgine's personal Facebook page.

No"politico" has ever referenced the county treasurer's race as the "Ugly Race of the Year." Instead, this is another example of Klein's mudslinging and personal slurs.

Philip Klein's hypocrisy is astounding. His mistake in referencing "the county Treasures race" is both mind-boggling and revealing. His lack of common courtesy and empathy is simply crude and vulgar.

From Klein v. Google et al.:
The respondents...are currently using, without permission, copyrighted material and copyrighted intellectual property...
As an example of this copyright infringement, Philip and his attorney argue without context:
The anonymous blogger has maliciously published a photograph that he altered to make it appear that Mr. Klein has engaged with sexual intercourse with an animal...Mr. Klein's friends, family, clients, prospective clients, the community...have been led to believe that Mr. Klein engages in such criminal activities.
This "altered photograph" is actually a satirical magazine cover (see upper right) that parodies the MSNBC "Dog Lover" segment on Philip R. Klein. 

While Philip is a piggish media wannabe who claims he's not a public figure, he apparently believes that Georgine Guillory is fair game for public ridicule.

She is, according to the First Amendment, just like Philip R. Klein.

Here's a candidate for "County Treasure" that Klein could really get behind:

Nitwit Tidbits

0 comments
Let's get started:
Crime Stoppers - We got some calls this morning - it seems there is a great political divide going on with crime stoppers. We have been asked to hold our check until the smoke clears. We are. We will give when the smoke clears.
(Snicker). "I have serious doubts whether Klein actually 'cut a check' and if so, for exactly how much." See my posting yesterday for more on this.
Airport - Traffic down again. Imagine that.
I couldn't find any verification of this, so apparently Philip is indeed imagining that. Perhaps I missed it, so please post corroborating links in the comments seciton. According to unsubstantiated hearsay, Klein has had a feud with Hal Ross, Manager of the SET Regional Airport, since 2005.

Rumor has it that Hal stopped PRK from making multiple trips through the buffet line for emergency workers during the Hurricane Rita aftermath.

While searching for information on this, I did find some items that didn't make this week's Nitwit Tidbits, including stories about increases in Beaumont's sale tax payments, how Valero is restarting its $1.4 billion project in Port Arthur, and a tragic incident where a fat man died of a heart attack while standing in a buffet line
Hearings - Okay - your turn. We will work on this next week - but for the next two weeks you get to speak in a public hearing on your taxes and the budget. It is called a PUBLIC HEARING?
Will Philip speak? "We" will work on this next week.
Help - There are rumors running all over the courthouse that war has broken out with King Patrick Swain - department heads are mad because he is holding on to some pork? Tell us no!
I've also heard rumors that Klein was asked to leave the isobutane clean-up in Hamshire last week, after he was caught going through the buffet line for first responders. Hence, no comment from the self-proclaimed "politico" on the great job done by the Hamshire VFD.
Ugly - Politicos have picked the county Treasures race as being the "Ugly Race of the Year." Here is what is showing up on the web - kind of funny. Watch it come down quick.
This item deserves a dedicated posting. More to come.
Media - Why doesn't the media show outrage over the Crime Stoppers Gig? We don't understand.
This is analogous to claiming that a revenue deficit constitutes a "budget crisis." Klein can't comprehend objectivity. See my posting yesterday for more on this. I don't understand why the media isn't outraged about fat men who masquerade as emergency workers to sneak free meals from first responder buffet lines.
Shake Up - We hear a major shake up is coming at a local media shop. TV People. Watch next week.
Have a great weekend. "We" will post late Sunday.

Sep 9, 2010

Not Acceptable

3 comments
In this Southeast Texas Political Review posting, Philip R. Klein writes:
Late this afternoon it was announced that Crime Stoppers of East Texas was shutting down. Rumors began weeks ago and we reported such which got a swift email from Crime Stoppers saying they were not in trouble. Well...they were. And now it is time to get them out of trouble. If there is ONE PROGRAM THAT IS NEEDED - IT IS CRIME STOPPERS.
The program that Klein references is EasTex Crime Stoppers in Nederland, not "Crime Stoppers of East Texas."  While Philip claims that he previously reported that the program was "shutting down,"  the actual mention came in a purported message from a reader on Klein's Reader Mail page, dated June 17, 2010:
From Port Arthur :

"Crime Stoppers - Seemingly they are hurting also. So we are cutting them a check. Do so also. A good cause. The reason for the hurt? When the government takes money away from you in taxes, fees and fines - you have less to spend in support of charitable causes. Duh?


EASTEX Crime Stoppers (not Beaumont) is hurting because they have been decertified by the state for financial mismanagement and therefore lost their funding."


Answer : Wow! We did not know this? Anyone? Can Anyone give us the scoop?
As such, Philip has just publicly admitted that he does indeed write his own Reader Mail. "Seemingly," this can be easily verified by Klein's signature train wrecks in grammar. 

More importantly, no one gave Klein the real scoop, although this has been brewing for months. So much for the "story behind the story in Southeast Texas Politics."
Now here is the question - why? Well it is the same old thing. When government takes your money you have less to give to things like Crime Stoppers. 
As Klein noted in his original posting from June, the EasTex Crimestoppers has suffered from poor management. Identical lines about the "government taking your money" appear in both Philip's article today and the original message. More evidence of Klein's personal agenda.

Apparently, the Executive Director who resigned yesterday appointed himself to that position. He previously attempted to get probation fees paid by Jefferson County to Beaumont Crime Stoppers diverted to EastTex Crime Stoppers.

To do this, he approached the state Crime Stoppers organization to have the Beaumont program decertified.  Unsuccessfully, since the Beaumont program has been considered the most successful in Southeast Texas for over 30 years; they routinely get calls from all jurisdictions around Southeast Texas. That was the real story that Klein missed in June.

From yesterday's Port Arthur News:
Danny Mallet, executive director, and Vice-President Jennifer Parker sent separate e-mail letters of resignation to members of the media Wednesday.

“The board of directors that were present at yesterday’s (Tuesday, Sept. 7) meeting are planning a new direction that I cannot support,” Mallet said. “EasTex was created to make East Texas a large safe zone, with law enforcement working together in a large “multi- jurisdictional” area. Law enforcement working together, not only in East Texas but all over the world. We had the greatest program, I think any county would be proud of. We had media support far beyond any one’s imagination. Criminals could run but they couldn’t hide from us.”
A cursory comparison between the Beaumont Crime Stoppers and the EasTex Crime Stoppers websites will verify who has "the greatest program." The Beaumont site is well-organized and professionally done; the program is doing quite well. The EasTex site looks like the Southeast Texas Political Review.
The Review is cutting a check this afternoon. We will be sending it and we urge all of you to send a check too. Here is the web address : http://www.724tips.com/

So here is what we ask. We are asking that you in business and the legal community throw in a "couple hundred." We did this afternoon and hope you will also. It is that important.
For the record, the program is now inactive, so I'm not sure how much a one-time donation will help. From today's Port Arthur News:
Rod Carroll, a board member with EasTex CrimeStoppers, announced Thursday that the organization is becoming inactive because of a shortage of funding.

Funding for the program comes from private donations and probationary funds. Carroll said the decision to make the program inactive was difficult for the board, but that the current economic climate made fundraising difficult.


The Beaumont CrimeStoppers program is not affected by the decision to make the EasTex program inactive. The Beaumont program can be contacted at 409-833-TIPS (833-8477).


He said efforts at fundraising will continue and the program could be revived if ongoing funding sources were found.
I have serious doubts whether Klein actually "cut a check" and if so, for exactly how much. As Rod Carroll noted, the program needs ongoing sources of funding, like those that the Beaumont program has developed over the years, not a one-time donation from a fat, self-aggrandizing "political consultant" with a personal agenda. 

Sep 8, 2010

History

4 comments
In this posting, Philip R. Klein demonstrates why he flunked out of Texas Tech after only a few semesters. The fundamentals of academic subjects like history, economics, political science, reading, writing, and basic arithmetic elude Klein to this day.
FLASHBACK : Lamar University, run by a local board of regents made up of mostly appointments by Democratic Governors gets a taste of red when school enrollment dies, sports dies and they try and throw their eggs in one basket. Being Basketball. As politics is played by the democrats - the GOP takes over in Austin Texas - and dissolves the board of regents and takes the school under the Texas University System - puts in Dr. Jimmy Simmons and tells him to build it up from the ground floor. Simmons gets rid of the politics - puts his foot down - works on getting young people into the school - works on getting professors out that cannot teach and are political drop in favorites - and starts building. In the 10 year plan - bringing back what brought a community together. Sports - real sports - being football and college life.
Very little of this is true and I've addressed much of this before as examples of Klein's "same old think, over and over and over again." See the articles here, here, and here.

Philip is unaware that the football program at Lamar has been discontinued three times, not once, during the history of the school. Likewise, Klein never provided an update on his 2007 claim of a RICO Investigation at Lamar University by the U.S. Department of Justice.

In spring of 1983, the Texas legislature approved Senate Bill 620 which created the Lamar University System. Lamar State College Orange and Lamar State College Port Arthur became separate entities in 1991 under Senate Bill 843. 

In 1993, Dr. Rex Cottle became President after a state management control audit of the Lamar University System. The controversial and critical audit led to discussions on merging the LU system with the Texas State University System (TSUS).

In February 1995, two Republicans, State Sen. Michael Galloway and State Rep. Mark Stiles, sponsored legislation to make Lamar University a part of the TSUS.  Philip has made derogatory statements about both of these past legislators. To be fair, so have many others in Southeast Texas.

While LU System Chancellor Joseph Champagne and University regents opposed the legislation, the bill passed in the Texas House in April '95 by a vote of 141-3. At the time, Democrats, not Republicans as Klein claims, controlled the Texas House of Representatives.  Clearly, this was not a partisan issue despite PRK's unsubstantiated history..

In March 1998, Dr. Rex Cottle resigned under duress and Dr. Jimmy Simmons became President in 1999. Many, perhaps most, involved people believe that Dr. Cottle was the worst administrator in Lamar's history. 

Klein denigrates other past administrators:
If you ride around Lamar - you will see names of buildings of men of yester year who created the death of the University. Now historians of Lamar will be fast to tell you that without those names - Lamar would have been dead. We are telling you that Lamar is alive because those same politicos are now gone. And history should never forget that.
One of those "politicos" mentioned by Klein in the past is Dr. John Gray, for whom the John Gray Institute and the Mary and John Gray Library are named. As Coach, John Gray led the Lamar football team school to an 8-1 record in 1932 and an 8-1-1 record in 1934. Dr. Gray was also the only administrator who served as President of Lamar during two separate administrations.

I'm comforted by the fact that in a few years when Philip R. Klein is forgotten, Dr. John Gray's legacy will live on.

What's Wrong with this Picture?

3 comments

See the original page here on the KBTV Channel 4 website.

Sep 7, 2010

Worst

2 comments
Philip R. Klein wrote in his latest posting on the Southeast Texas Political Review (emphasis is mine):
It has leaked out quietly this morning - but it will have a huge impact on the employees of Port Arthur, Texas. That is the now released numbers that shows Port Arthur Texas is in worst shape than originally thought.

According to sources inside city hall - Port Arthur Texas is looking at a possible 10% cut back across the board just to make budget.


"Our numbers are not final - but we may be looking at about 10% across the board without some type of tax relief. I don' think that is off the board. I think we are going to have to raise taxes just to keep some of what we have," said a source inside city hall.
According to sources inside the city - the final number is not in but health insurance may increase by 12% this year and a whopping 32% the next with the Obamacare bill hitting in 2011-12.
As we have been telling you for over a year now - it is here. The day the piper has to be paid. And folks - you are going to pay it. They don't know how to cut back - they only know how to spend. And spend they will. At the cost of public safety.
True to his word (said with tongue firmly in cheek), Klein published this prediction almost a year earlier to the day on Sept, 9, 2009:
The Review has learned from a source very close to city council that after review of the city budget for 2009-10 - that the budget will be unable to sustain the outflow of money.

"We are going to have some serious problems with funding the budget come May of next year," said our source inside the Port Arthur City Council.

The problem? Seemingly the water and sewer infrastructure is collapsing and improvements are not keeping up with the problems. A whopping $30 million dollars is needed to bring the city up to where it should be according to our sources.
I also promised to revisit this story:
According to organizers, [State] Senator [Robert] Nichols did a motorcycle ride down to the rally this past week in Port Arthur. He crossed the bridge and came to the gate (s) where the event was held. He was wearing his nice leathers and had a cool jacket on due to the rain he came through. He was stopped by a police officer at the gate - one from reportedly chambers county.
Sources in Austin tell the Review that the senator has opened warfare on the City of Port Arthur. He has staff looking over issues that "cover Port Arthur." Meaning - it is going to be a rough time for those Port Arthur Delegates that will be going to Port Arthur Day in Austin this next year. If you know what we are saying.
Gezzzz.....we will keep you updated on this.
I'm still waiting on that update.

On Due Diligence and Objectivity

1 comments
When Philip R. Klein attacked future Jefferson County Judge Jeff Branick for a letter that he wrote to the Port Arthur News, I published Jeff's letter. See this article.  Precinct 1 Constable Charles Wiggins responded with a rebuttal also published by the Port Arthur News last week.

In the interest of fairness and spirit of non-partisan debate, I'm publishing the letter from Constable Wiggins, too, even though Klein is now exploiting other issues to further his own personal agenda.

Readers deserve to hear both sides of the issue and both officials make strong arguments. From the Port Arthur News:
Constable tells his side of story in layoff debate
Charles L. Wiggins, Jr.
The Port Arthur News

BEAUMONT — There has been much talk on constable issues in the media lately.  I am Precinct 1 Constable in Beaumont and would like the opportunity to state our side of this debate to you.  Do not be deceived by inaccuracies reported concerning duties of the Constable. The Texas Statute is clear. Constables and their Deputies are Peace Officers.  Constables were created to be the arms and legs of the Justice Court System in their respective precincts.

In 1989 Jefferson County Sheriff turned over all civil process to Constables (thousands of papers per year). Many papers are mandated and private process companies cannot serve.  It is a thankless and often dangerous job.  No one wants to be sued, evicted or have children taken from them.  A large percentage of papers are generated from District and County Courts. If our paper counts are low, wouldn't District and County Court numbers be low as well?  I truly believe this is not about paper numbers or there would be major cuts in all County offices.

At Budget Hearings, we were told the County was in dire straits and needed to cut Constables 43 percent.  This financial situation was not caused by Constables but by poor management decisions.  You should know that two weeks before budget hearings commissioners voted to spend almost seven million dollars on courthouse renovations.

The paper numbers Mr. Jeff Branick uses do not accurately reflect the amount of work that goes into serving our papers.  We are not a paper route.  I assure you, we work days, nights, weekends, often under stressful and dangerous conditions to deliver court papers.

Commissioner Arnold offered an “Olive Branch” of 2 to 3 Deputies shared between six Constables.  This cannot even be considered when State regulations require Deputies be commissioned by an agency which has total responsibility for the Deputy's actions while on and off duty.

Please understand we are a public service agency, not a “for-profit business.”  Our service fees are set by Commissioners' Court. The charge for a citation is $60. If taxpayers use private process servers, the charge could be as much or more than $100.  This does not address court-ordered free work (pro-bono) that our office does.  Last year we received over 250 papers to deliver at no charge.

Mr. Branick states Constables made a “DEAL” with the Attorney General's Child Support Office (AG's) to accept lower service fees to use Constables instead of private servers.  This is NOT the truth.  As an attorney, Mr. Branick should know that the Federal Government sets amounts that AG offices pay Government Agencies.  Mr. Branick should also know we do not make “DEALS,” we serve any and all process directed to us under the laws of Texas. The local AG's office told us private process servers were using computer programs allowing them to track service, something we did not have.  In an effort to get AG's business back and better serve the public, we worked diligently for three years to set up a system they could use.  Last year we were given computers and the programs we needed.  The AG's office agreed and started sending process to Constables again.  As of April 2010, we are seeing a dramatic increase in child support papers received.  Getting these papers served forces dead-beat parents to pay child support and gets kids off welfare.  For this program, we received the “2010 Best Practices Award” out of all Texas Counties by our State Association.  You should know that the Commissioners and County Judge did not even consider the numbers from April, May and June of this year in their calculations.

I've worked for Jefferson County 28 years, 17 in this office, and have never been visited by County Judge or Commissioners.  I do not know how to build roads and I can assure you Commissioners do not understand duties and pressures Constables and Deputies face.  I welcome citizens of Jefferson County, County Judge, Commissioners and anyone interested to come to my department and see what we actually do. We want you to have an accurate understanding of how we serve you, the citizens and taxpayers of Jefferson County.

Charles L. Wiggins, Jr.
Precinct 1 Constable
Jefferson County