Thursday, April 30, 2015

Mayday Warning From Monty Bennett About The TRWD Board Election

A few minutes ago that which you see here arrived in my email.

This is the message from Monty Bennett which appeared in yesterday's Fort Worth Star-Telegram, on the same day TRWD Board Incumbent, Jim Lane, launched his now infamous attack ad on the man who has become popularly known as the Dallas Billionaire Businessman Bogeyman.

In his message to those few who are allowed to vote in the May 9 TRWD board election, Monty Bennett has a message for you.

It is a coherent message, free of propaganda, free of vitriol, free of lies.

In other words Monty Bennett's message bears no resemblance to the propaganda nonsense which the Jim Lane/Martha Leonard campaign spews.

I worked my typing fingers to the bone, and was eventually able to copy the entire Monty Bennett message for your reading enlightenment...

Why May 9th Really is Mayday
By Monty J. Bennett

Mayday is the term used to request immediate help when facing danger. Mayday! Your help is needed! Fort Worth voters must vote responsibly in the critical election on May 9th. Early voting has already started. Citizens of Tarrant County will decide whether a vitally important but largely invisible governmental entity should be transparent and accountable.

Decisions of the Tarrant Regional Water District (TRWD) will affect residents of Fort Worth now and for many years to come. We cannot exist without water: clean, reasonably-priced, dependable water. The TRWD’s initial core mission was to provide what’s called “raw” water and flood control. (TRWD sells water to municipalities, and they sell it to you.) This is a vital responsibility. However, the TRWD is a poster child for “mission creep.” The powerful agency holds taxing, spending and eminent domain powers. It argued that flood control required it to fund levies but then changed to funding “economic development.” Today, the TRWD’s discretionary fund spends 250 percent more on private development than on providing safe water for public use and they have increased your water rates 64 percent over the last decade. A more accurate name for the TRWD is the “Tarrant Regional Private Development Piggy Bank.”

Demands for greater transparency are growing and your vote is the best way to be heard. Director Mary Kelleher was elected in 2013 and pledged to pull back the curtain on the TRWD’s dealings. Although she is a sitting director, she has been denied access to official records and was censured for having opinions different from her colleagues. Two commissioners, Marty Leonard and Jim Lane, should have stood for election last year. Article XVI, Section 30 of the Texas Constitution plainly and unambiguously provides that no TRWD Director may serve a term in excess of four years. The directors arbitrarily extended their own terms in office (under cover of a bill in the legislature ostensibly saying that elections should be “moved” to be in odd numbered years). How would you feel if your own city council member arbitrarily decided he or she didn’t want to face the voters and just moved his or her election to the next year?

The TRWD has attacked me, claiming I am only upset because they propose to use their powers of eminent domain to put a pipeline through property belonging to my mother. It’s true, that got my attention – and has largely been resolved in my favor, but as I’ve scrutinized their operations, I have become appalled. They have labeled me as a “Dallas businessman” and conveniently fail to acknowledge the fact that my company owns the downtown Hilton Hotel and the Ashton Hotel, so I have been paying taxes in Fort Worth for 20 years. They claim I want to ‘control your water.’ What on earth would I do with a bunch of water? All that’s just silly. The TRWD has run over citizens for decades; I just happen to be blessed with the resources to be able to fight back.

Moreover, I am committed to Fort Worth. I love Fort Worth, and I put my money where my mouth is. Interestingly, they never mention the five, yes FIVE, Dallas billionaires who are financing their campaigns. To my knowledge, I’m the only Dallas resident supporting the challengers.

I am calling “Mayday!” to encourage voters to learn what the issues and stakes are, and to compare the two incumbent directors with the independent, civic-minded challengers, Craig Bickley and Michele Von Luckner. These candidates have publicly promised to bring more transparency to the TRWD’s proceedings and to actually listen to the citizens of Fort Worth. I ask the citizens of the TRWD’s service area to call their friends who are eligible to vote and ask them to support the reform candidates. Shout “Mayday!” spread the word and be heard by exercising your constitutional right to vote for change and reform.
Monty Bennett

Escaping The TRWD Board Election Scandals By Walking With Ghostly Victims Of Eminent Domain Abuse

Today I decided to take a break from my temporary obsession with the ongoing TRWD Board Election Scandals and go to one of my favorite polluted creeks in the TRWD watershed, that being Village Creek.

Village Creek flows through the Village Creek Natural Historical Area. I go to this location to visit the Indian Ghosts who haunt the area where long ago many natives were murdered, or evicted from their land in a very primitive form of the Texas version of eminent domain abuse.

Nowadays Texas eminent domain abuse is usually accomplished without resorting to murder. Maybe some gravedigging, but seldom murder.

As far as I know.

Well, now that you are making me think about it, I suppose character assassination is a form of murder. A lot of that takes place during eminent domain abuse at this location on the planet.

I also visited the skittish Village Creek turtles today, which you can see above, where a few were sunbathing on their home log.

Village Creek appeared to be more brown than usual today. How does this water get so dirty in the short distance it has flowed from Lake Arlington?

Eternal optimist that I be I'm sure that brown water problem will soon be fixed.....

Shocked To Learn Marty Is Not TRWD Incumbent Leonard's Real Name

No, that is not a photo from 60 years ago of former Fort Worth Beauty Queen, Marty Leonard, you are looking at here.

That is a young Norma Jean Baker, before she changed her name to Marilyn Monroe.

Yesterday, in a shocking expose laden TRWD board incumbent poster of propaganda voters were shocked to learn that TRWD board opponent, Michele Von Luckner used her pre-married name of Michele Hojnacki on her Drivers License and Voters Registration.

How outrageously corrupt to use ones maiden name after one gets married to someone with a different last name.

Later in the day, yesterday, hours after I was shocked to learn that Michele Von Luckner had a different last name before she got married, I was further shocked to learn that the aforementioned TRWD board member currently running for re-election, Marty Leonard, has a different name on her birth certificate.

Martha Leonard.

How are we to trust anything this Leonard person tells us if she is so deceptive that she would change her first name from Martha to Marty. What is Ms. Leonard trying to hide with this name change?

As I thought about the shocking expose of Michele Von Luckner's and Marty Leonard's dual identities I thought of some other nefarious political figures who changed their names for questionable reasons.

Ulysses S. Grant was born Hiram Ulysses Grant, but changed his name when he joined the army. Why? To sound real patriotic, anticipating a run for the presidency a few decades in the future? Or just an honest mistake? With his new initials of U.S. Grant, some of his army buddies even took to calling Grant "Uncle Sam".  This scandalous name change really should have disqualified Grant from being a Union General, let alone president.

A few years after President Grant we had President Woodrow Wilson. Only that was not his real name. He was born Thomas Woodrow Wilson. What was Wilson trying to hide with this name change?

Then during the Roaring 20's Calvin Coolidge became president upon the death of Warren G. Harding. Calvin Coolidge's real name was John Calvin Coolidge. How do all these wanton name changers manage to get  into high office?

After Calvin Coolidge America went half a century without having a president who changed his name. And then, due to the bad behavior of Richard Nixon, Leslie Lynch King became president, without getting elected. Never heard of President King? Well, that is because you knew him as President Gerald Rudolph Ford.

A few years after President King we had our most recent presidential name changer, Bill Clinton, who was born William Jefferson Blythe III.

So, now that we have had time to think about it, Michele Von Luckner and Marty Leonard are in some pretty good company in the name changing department.

What I am wondering about now is what geniuses in the TRWD incumbent's campaign came up with this type "expose" nonsense?

Whoever it is, I think the highly ethical, morally upright Jim Lane and Marty Leonard should fire them, that is, if they actually are highly ethically and morally upright.....

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Time To Pull The Curtain Back On Some More TRWD Propaganda Before Monty Bennett Comes To Fort Worth Tonight

I tell you this TRWD Chinatown Board Election is exhausting. This morning it was a despicable full page Jim Lane attack ad in the Star-Telegram. This afternoon it was another poster size Jim Lane/Marty Leonard attack ad in my mailbox.

The attack ad in my mailbox shared some of the same propaganda as this morning's newspaper attack ad, that being the accusation that Monty Bennett was digging up and re-burying veterans, and others, in his fake, pipeline blocking cemetery.

However, the TRWD incumbent's attack ad in my mailbox outdoes the despicability of this morning's Star-Telegram ad.

Before I get to saying anything more about this afternoon's despicable attack ad, just as I was getting ready to take a photo of it, due to it being too big to fit on my scanner, my phone rang with an un-recognized 817 number. I answered to find myself being told that the evil Dallas businessman, that nefarious bogeyman puppeteer, Monty Bennett, will be in Fort Worth in a couple hours, attending the Fort Worth Business Press TRWD Board Election Forum  at 5:30 pm at the Central Library  in downtown Fort Worth, 500 W. Third St. (corner of Third and Lamar, two blocks from the Tarrant County Courthouse).

I have also been told that Jim Lane has chickened out of attending this forum. Student that I am of psychology, it surprises me not that Lane would not want to face those against whom he has launched today's despicable attacks. It is a symptom of Little Man Syndrome to be all brave bluster when one is a safe distance from the tall object of ones faux brave bluster.

Now back to the piece of despicability I found in my mailbox. One quarter of the huge mailing is taken up with BIG white text in front of a red curtain saying "It's time to pull the curtain back on Dallas businessman Monty Bennett and his puppet slate of Water Board candidates".

When we pull back the curtain, or open the poster, we see the depiction of Monty Bennett you see above, being the evil Dallas puppeteer.

And what is that 'truth' behind the curtain?

Well, it is truly shocking stuff, way more shocking than Jim Lane funneling millions of TRWD money to his bankrupt friend.

I shall translate the shocking revelations to be closer to the truth than the TRWD propagandist's muckraking.

For instance Michele Von Luckner was recently ordered to pay an overdue, disputed bill. Von Luckner has someone working on her campaign who once changed his name and was once arrested for something like jaywalking in San Angelo. This highly suspect person is the treasurer of a PAC. Von Luckner has never voted in a Tarrant County election and has been known to use her maiden name (shouldn't she be doing hard time for this?). Von Luckner's political consultant is Monty Bennett's business partner. (Now that really is shocking, I know I'm shocked. Aren't you?)

And then there is the nefarious Craig Bickley. You can tell just by looking at his menacing face that he is probably up to no good.

Well, get ready to be shocked. Bickley can not vote for himself. And he also is involved with someone who changed his name to hide his criminal past in San Angelo. (methinks San Angelo must be a hotbed of crime) This criminal also is a treasurer in a PAC. (I wonder if this is the same bad man that is on the notorious Von Luckner campaign?) Bickley's political consultant is also Monty Bennett's business partner. (I tell you it is a vast criminal conspiracy)

And the most shocking of the TRWD incumbent's behind the curtain Bickley revelations? Craig Bickley failed to win a previous race in a Republican primary. And not only that, for this current TRWD election Bickley baldfacedly declared that his residence was outside of the extremely gerrymandered TRWD voting district.

Craig Bickley failed to win a previous race? Only one? How many times has Jim Lane lost a race? I think the only time he's ever won is election to the TRWD board. If I am remembering right Jim Lane has lost mayor, city council, congressional, senate and dog catcher races.

So, yes, Craig Bickley is way behind Jim Lane in number of races lost.

Will Fort Worth's SWAT team be on site to deal with the evil Dallas businessman coming to town? What with it being so widely known that Monty Bennett is behind a vast conspiracy to take over Fort Worth's water supply I suspect a massive police presence will be in play.....

How Despicable Is The TRWD's Cowboy Napoleon Jim Lane?

A few minutes ago someone from the TRWD incumbent's side, who is disgusted with the TRWD incumbent's low blow campaign, emailed photos of TRWD incumbent, Jim Lane's, advertisement which appeared in today's Fort Worth Star-Telegram.

The top of the ad is that which you see here, the ad also included an equally large letter from Jim Lane, full of phony umbrage and propaganda twisting of the truth.

Shortly ago I hiked up to Albertsons hoping to acquire this week's Fort Worth Weekly and see the sleazy Jim Lane ad myself.

Well, no FW Weekly yet, and apparently the Cowboy Napoleon ad is not in Star-Telegram editions sent to the east side of town. That or I missed it, which seems as if it would be hard to do, what with it appearing to be a full page ad.

At the bottom of the top part of the ad I can make out it says "An open letter from U.S. Army Veteran and Tarrant Regional Water District Board Member, Jim Lane". Below is the letter....

In the letter the Cowboy Napoleon is full of outrage over the alleged "ruthless" relocation of a World War II veteran and an elderly woman.

Of Monty Bennett, Lane despicably spews "How despicable of you to hunt for dead bodies to bury in the path of the pipeline!"

I have been told that Monty Bennett provided a burial location for a WWII veteran with whom Mr. Bennett was acquainted and who Mr. Bennett knew had no funds for a proper burial.

And regarding the burial of the WWII veteran the despicable Jim Lane says, "And how dishonest of you to do this AFTER receiving formal notice of the water pipeline crossing an uninhabited portion of your weekend ranch. You used those dead bodies only as "props" in your failed injunction to stop the water pipeline."

Lane huffs and puffs that Monty Bennett has committed some sort of cowardly act for which he needs to apologize, saying...

"So, Mr. Bennett, I am asking you and your well-financed slate of candidates (Mr. Bickley and Ms. Von Luckner) to publicly apologize, and to pledge to the voters in the Tarrant Regional Water District to never disrespect our veterans again."

Lane ends his letter by saying of his apology demand that "It is the right thing to do."

Jim Lane
Vietnam Veteran

Okay, Mr. Lane, I think what actually is the right thing to do is for you to apologize to Monty Bennett, Mr.Bickley and Ms. Von Luckner for your slanderous despicable desperate attack ad. I think Craig Bickley should bring this up at first opportunity at tonight's Fort Worth Business Press TRWD Election Forum in the downtown Fort Worth Central Library.

And does anyone know in what capacity Jim Lane served in Vietnam? I have seen Jim Lane in person a couple times. It is not easy to picture him in uniform. I guess army uniforms must come in all sizes....

The TRWD Secret Swimmin' Hole Needs A Thorough Voter's Purge

This morning in my email I found the above editorial cartoon by Michael H. Price, published in the Fort Worth Business Press at some point during the 2006 TRWD board election which saw Jim Lane elected to the money dispensing position he has now held for 9 years.

Near as I can tell this particular editorial cartoon depicts TRWD water board candidates lamenting that they were no longer able to operate in secret, with their crystal clear Trinity River swimming hole now known to the great masses of unwashed Fort Worth voters yearning to swim clean.

I was thinking about that crystal clear Trinity River this morning, well, more accurately, I was thinking about the nasty un-clear Trinity River this morning.

Last week after I blogged Watching Fort Worth's Cowboy Napoleon Get Waterlooed By Craig Bickley & Michele Von Luckner a comment caused me to ask Is It Time To Pull The Mismanaged Plug On America's Biggest Boondoggle?

In that Plug the Plug on the Boondoggle blogging I made mention of what Craig Bickley had said that set off the Cowboy Napoleon's embarrassing tirade, with part of what Craig Bickley said being....

"They are trying to get people to get into a nasty river. Why don't you clean up the river first?"

Good question. Why is there not a concentrated effort to clean up the Trinity River? When rain falls in copious amounts, as it has lately, why does so much litter end up floating in the Trinity River? All the creeks I have contact with which flow into the Trinity River are littered messes when water runs high.

Village Creek, Fosdick Creek, Tandy Creek, all with astonishing amounts of litter getting flushed into the Trinity. There must be dozens upon dozens of other creeks flowing with the same littered mess.


From whence I came, Western Washington, there are several rivers which flow out of the Cascades into Puget Sound, the Nooksack, Skagit, Snoqualmie, Puyallup, Nisqually, Snohomish, Green, others I am not remembering. In flood mode I do not ever remember seeing masses of litter getting flushed into Puget Sound. I do remember seeing a lot of logs in the rivers, and one year, a house floating down the swollen Snohomish.

Does all that Trinity River litter end up in the Gulf? Creating a litter plume, ending up on Gulf beaches?

As for the other type of Trinity River pollution, of the e.coli don't eat the fish sort, where does that pollution enter the river? Are Lakes Benbrook, Worth and Eagle Mountain polluted with elevated e.coli and other bacterias? Or does that bad stuff enter the water after it leaves those reservoirs?

Back in the 1960s Puget Sound and other Washington bodies of water, such as Lake Washington, were badly polluted. One could not swim in Lake Washington or eat the salmon one caught there. Then the voters in the Puget Sound counties voted to clean up the water with new treatment plants, with the result being a clean Puget Sound and edible salmon and swimmers frolicking in Lake Washington.

Has there been any similar type effort to clean up the Trinity River before polluted, littered water reaches the Gulf of Mexico?

If not, why not?

If not, is it not the Tarrant Regional Water District which is responsible for the sorry quality level of the water in the Trinity River as it passes through Fort Worth?

Which brings us back to that question Craig Bickley asked "Why don't you clean up the river first?"

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

When It Comes To TRWD Law Breaking Are Marty Leonard & Jim Lane Part Of The Problem?

This morning, for the first time this TRWD board election season I found a mailing from the Craig Bickley/Michele Von Luckner campaign in my mailbox.

I have found at least three mailings in my mailbox from the TRWD incumbents, Marty Leonard and Jim Lane, and their co-conspirators in propaganda spewing, Betsy Price and Mike Moncrief.

It is interesting to make note of the differences between the TRWD incumbent's campaign mailer and the TRWD opponent's mailer.

The incumbent's propaganda productions have been poster sized, too big to fit on my large scanner bed.

The opponent's mailer easily fit on my large scanner bed. So, I scanned both sides and morphed the result into one image, which you see above.

The TRWD incumbent's campaign mailer features big headlines warning about the imaginary evil Dallas businessman's plot to take over Fort Worth's water. Other than the Bogeyman warnings the incumbent's large mailing is rather sparse with information, and what information is there is blatant puffed up propaganda.

Meanwhile the TRWD opponent's campaign mailer, whilst significantly smaller, manages to include a lot of information, in the form what are known as facts.

Like a headline which states the fact that "IT PAYS TO KNOW JIM LAND AND MARTY LEONARD..." next to a paragraph which details one of the TRWD's more blatant acts of corruption, that being rescuing Jim Lane's friend, Carl Bell, from his financial woes by paying $16,000,000 for land appraised at $9,010,000, on which the world's first drive-in movie theater of the 21st century was built.

Clyde Picht also makes note of the TRWD Bellgate Scandal in a letter to the editor in yesterday's Fort Worth Star-Telegram, which you can read in a Star-Telegraph post titled Clyde says...

The TRWD opponent's campaign mailer also has a couple good quotes from Fort Worth Weekly. Such as this...

"It's well known that top water district officials put relatives on the agency's lucrative payroll. But ask the agency for a list of relatives who work there. Ask how many of Oliver's relatives work there. You won't get straight answers. You'll get a non-answer from a lawyer."
Fort Worth Weekly - July 2, 2014

And this....

Fort Worth Weekly - November 21, 2014

The TRWD opponent's mailer includes a list of priorities, including focusing the TRWD's budget on increasing water levels, while reducing spending on private development. Getting rid of the deer lease, the ice skating rink and the TRWD's restaurant. Plus increase TRWD transparency by responding to open record requests in the legally mandated manner.

In addition to getting rid of the deer lease, ice rink and restaurant, I think a few other dubious TRWD developments should be undeveloped. Such as some of the poorly designed eyesores, like Cowtown Wakepark and Panther Island Pavilion, where there is no island  or pavilion.

And a stop should be put to rockin' the river in inner tubes until the Trinity River is flowing with clean, clear water suitable for fish and humans....

Monday, April 27, 2015

Building The World's Longest Floating Bridge In Four Years While In Fort Worth America's Biggest Boondoggle....

Today we continue with our popular series of bloggings about feats of engineering, mostly of the bridge sort, with project construction timelines of four years, give or take a year or  two.

Looking at these various feats of engineering has been prompted by our befuddlement regarding the construction of three simple little bridges being built over dry land in Fort Worth, Texas, with those three simple little bridges having a four year project timeline.

The bridge you see here, under construction, in a photo screen capped from the WSDOT SR 520 Floating Bridge and Landings Project website, will be the longest floating bridge in the world upon completion.

The SR 520 bridge floats from Seattle on the west end, to near Bill Gates' home, in Medina, on the east side of Lake Washington.

As you can see, the SR 520 bridge is being constructed over water, not dry land.

The Goobers responsible for foisting on Fort Worth the building of these three simple little bridges have actually claimed they are building them over dry land so as to simplify engineering and cut costs. When the actual reason is there are insufficient funds to build the three simple little bridges in a timely fashion.

Fort Worth's three simple little bridges are part of what local congresswoman, Kay Granger, thinks is the biggest urban water construction project currently underway in North America. That urban water construction project is known as the Trinity River Uptown Central City Panther Island Vision Boondoggle, also known as The Boondoggle, also known as America's Biggest Boondoggle.

The current price tag for The Boondoggle's underfunded project is around a billion dollars. The Boondoggle started off costing a couple hundred millions dollars. And then Kay Granger's son, J.D., was hired by his drinking buddy, Jim Oliver, to run the project, which soon had The Boondoggle sponsoring inner tube beer drinking parties in the polluted Trinity River, a wakeboard park, a drive-in movie theater, a restaurant, an ice rink, a beer hall and other wonders in addition to those bridges being built in slow motion.

The Seattle zone's SR 520 Floating Bridge Project is currently slated to cost $4.65 billion.

So, how is this expensive bridge building project funded? Well, let's look at the WSDOT website and get that information.....

Financial Information
This project is funded by a variety of state and federal sources, including SR 520 tolling that began in December 2011.

Imagine that, the money is coming from state and federal sources, which I suppose makes sense since it is a state highway connecting to a federal highway. And a toll has been charged to those crossing the existing bridge since December of 2011.

Fort Worth voters approved building a multi-purpose arena by voting yes to a one dollar toll to those renting a livestock stall in the new arena. How is that project coming along? Is there a project timeline for the arena project?

I wonder if a Seattle area congressperson's kid was hired to direct the SR 520 bridge project so as to secure those federal funds? I suspect not. What with the project appearing to be well underway, that and I think doing such a thing is illegal in progressive, democratic, non-oligarch parts of America.

Now, on to how long til the SR 520 Floating Bridge is ready for drivers to float across it. Back to the WSDOT website  for project time line information...

What is the project timeline?
Late 2011 - Began pontoon construction in Tacoma.
Early 2012 - Began anchor construction in Kenmore.
Spring 2012 - Began bridge construction on eastern shore of Lake Washington.
Spring 2016 - Anticipated date to open new floating bridge to drivers.
Late 2016 - Anticipated date for removal of the existing floating bridge.

Okay, Spring of 2012 bridge construction began from Bill Gates' side of the lake, with the bridge anticipated to be open to drivers in the Spring of 2016.

Four years to build the longest floating bridge in the world.

Over water.

Can anyone point me to a link to a TRWD webpage, or a TRUCCPIVB (Trinity River Uptown Central City Panther Island Vision Boondoggle) webpage where we can glean any financial or project timeline information?

Like, what is the total number of dollars, both in salary and perks, paid so far to Kay Granger's son for mismanaging America's Biggest Boondoggle?

Four years to build the world's longest floating bridge in a progressive, democratic part of America. Four years to build three simple little bridges, over dry land, connecting the mainland to an imaginary island in what is not a progressive, democratic part of America.

One would think the locals would catch on that something ain't quite right with doing things the Fort Worth Way of having a big town run by an oligarchy. One would think the locals would get fed up and insist some changes be made, like starting with the firing of the local congresswoman's son from a job it is now quite clear he was not qualified for, that is, unless, maybe, the locals are perfectly okay with living in the town where America's Biggest Boondoggle is located....

Sunday, April 26, 2015

This Morning My Mailbox Contained A Tale Of Corruption Along With Some TRWD Corruption

An early Sunday morning, pre-swim, opening of my mailbox rendered what I think I would characterize as serendipitous irony.

A letter from Mary Kelleher, with the envelope boldly in red letting me know that what was inside the envelope was "A Tale of Corruption Told From an Insider's Perspective..."

Also in the mailbox was yet one more poster-sized propaganda mailing from the TRWD incumbents and their mouthpieces, Betsy Price and Mike Moncrief.

In Mary Kelleher's Tale of Corruption she cautions...

Now please be forewarned. You can expect to hear some outlandish attacks from people in authority like Mayor Betsy Price, Mike Moncrief, and Kay Granger. I implore you to hold to the facts. You will be told Dallas businessman Monty Bennett of Dallas is trying to steal Fort Worth’s water. NOT TRUE! Monty Bennett is a wealthy businessman who lives in Dallas but he also owns property in Fort Worth and east Texas. Monty is one of many victims of TRWD’s abuse of eminent domain; he just happens to have the financial resources to fight against this abuse.

So, in my mail today I get a warning from Mary Kelleher warning me about the TRWD propaganda which was also in my mailbox.

This latest TRWD propaganda confirms the shamelessness of these ethically challenged miscreants who somehow, in Fort Worth, are seen as legit authority figures.

These Fort Worth authority figures, Betsy and Mike, who Mary warned you about, in this latest propaganda, after their boilerplate attack against the evil Dallas businessman, are quoted saying "Don't be misled by false attacks...."

Oh, the irony.

You really should heed that false attacks warning from Betsy and Mike, but take it as some sort of Freudian slip, where their tortured consciences are warning you not to be misled by their false attacks.

Basically the TRWD incumbents can not run on their record, because that record includes way too many instances of corruption, so they are running against a Dallas Bogeyman, believing, apparently, that Fort Worth voters are stupid and are irrationally paranoid about anything coming from Dallas.

On the reverse side of the propaganda where Betsy and Mike warned us to not be misled by false attacks are their own false attacks (and propaganda) under the Orwellian heading of 6 GOOD REASONS to keep Marty Leonard and Jim Lane PROTECTING OUR LOCAL WATER.

The false attacks (and propaganda) from Betsy and Mike....

Claiming 99% of the money for Marty and Jim's three opponents comes from either the Dallas Businessman Monty Bennett or from outside of Texas.

Not true.

Claiming Bennett has been involved in 7 lawsuits against the TRWD, and to date has lost all of his lawsuits in court.

Where else would one lose a lawsuit? And, not all the cases have been decided. This is what is known as deceptive propaganda. Note that no mention is made of the ongoing Henderson County Grand Jury investigation into TRWD wrongdoing

Claiming Marty and Jim have ensured we have water for Fort Worth and Tarrant County families.

Really? How have these two ensured we have water?

Claiming Marty and Jim have been strong taxpayer watchdogs.

Yes, strong taxpayer watchdogs, if by that one means that these two watched millions of taxpayer dollars get wasted trying to use the courts to take water from Oklahoma. Didn't Marty go along with Jim's taking millions of TRWD taxpayer's dollars to rescue a bankrupt friend by paying way above market value for the bankrupt friend's land on which the world's first drive-in movie theater of the 21st century was built?

Marty and Jim have saved taxpayers millions of dollars through conservation education which has resulted in 104 BILLION gallons of water saved between 2007 and 2013.

The above is so ridiculous I sort of don't know if anything needs to be said to point out the ridiculousness.

Marty and Jim have helped our water board partner with nonprofit groups to expand community use of Gateway Park, Trinity Trails system and Eagle Mountain Park.

How have Marty and Jim helped the water board partner with nonprofit groups in a way which affected Gateway Park? Or the Trinity Trails? I've not been to Eagle Mountain Park. Does that park have modern restroom facilities, with running water? And no outhouses? Marty and Jim's TRWD Boondoggle, currently calling itself Panther Island, for years has had a massive sign installation at Gateway Park touting all the wonders that their cataract clouded vision would bring to Gateway Park, none of which has come to fruition.

But, the signs are nice.

As for that letter from Mary Kelleher which contained the warning about outlandish TRWD incumbent attacks, well turns out I had already read that letter, back on April 15, when it arrived in my email in PDF form.

I blogged about the letter from Mary Kelleher in a blogging titled From The Desk Of Mary Kelleher Why We Need To Elect Bickley & Von Luckner.

Click the link and read the letter, if you want to read a straightforward account about the TRWD from someone who has experienced the corruption up close and very personal.

And don't forget to vote. Early voting begins tomorrow, April 27.......

Saturday, April 25, 2015

A Few Minutes Spent At Prairie Fest With Mary Kelleher & The Chicks

I spent an almost record breaking amount of time at the Prairie Fest today, along with a lot of other people.

I would hazard to guess that today's Prairie Fest broke the record for number of people on the Tandy Hills prairie.

The 10th Anniversary Prairie Fest appeared, by far, to have the most booths, displays and activities I've seen at a Prairie Fest.

However, the belly dancing was a bit subdued this year, at least whilst I was watching. But there was some good hula hooping going on in the hippie van belly dancing tepee area.

Music is a big part of the Prairie Fest, powered by solar generated electricity. As you can see, below, the Prairie Fest is a bit of a Woodstock on the Prairie.

Now that you're making me think about it, I think Woodstock on the Prairie should be the theme of next year's Prairie Fest.

As I walked around the Prairie Fest, taking in all the festivities swirling about me, I came upon one area that was in a frenzy of excitement. What, I wondered, are all these people looking at and doing which seemed to be causing them to have such a mighty fine time?

Turned out to be a wagon full of one week old chicks.

Earlier in the week I had been told that Mary, who has a farm, would be at the Prairie Fest with chicks. At that point in time I was not sure what this meant.

Turns out Mary with the farm is Mary Kelleher, the lone Representative of the People on the TRWD board.

Mary wheeled a wagon full of chicks to the Prairie Fest where she and others, including Layla Caraway, were doing some intense campaigning for Craig Bickley and Michele Von Luckner to join Mary on the TRWD board, replacing Jim Lane and Marty Leonard, who were nowhere to be seen at the Prairie Fest.

I sat with the chicks for awhile. It was interesting, and a bit surprising to me, how many people were tuned into the TRWD board election and totally receptive to the plea to vote out the incumbents. Some of the people sounded more like campaigners than the campaigners.

The young voter above told me he'd named his chick, Peeps. I thought that was cute, but we were all concerned he was holding Peeps way too tightly.

At one point I decided to take a picture of the chick's signage. That caused a bad dog reaction which almost got me bit.

I was asked twice if Craig Bickley and Michele Von Luckner were in attendance. I said that they were not in attendance, but Mary Kelleher was in the room.

With her chicks.

Mary Kelleher in the room seemed to be a satisfactory substitute for the missing candidates.

I did point out that fellow TRWD board candidate, Keith Annis, had a booth, but no one seemed to know who he was. I saw the Keith Annis booth, with Keith Annis manning it all alone. It was sort of pitiful. He could have used some chicks....

10th Anniversary Prairie Fest Opens On The Tandy Hills Under A Clear Blue Sky

The 10th Anniversary Prairie Fest has begun, with People to the Prairie starting to arrive a few minutes ago at the 11am opening, closing when the sun leaves today at sunset.

The Tandy Hills are likely a bit damp today, muddy in places, due to yesterday's heavy rain. But, a little mud won't stop a lot of people from having themselves a mighty fine time communing with the natural world today.

I expect to be among the nature communers sometime in the mid-afternoon time frame.

Twisted Star-Telegram Editorial Endorses Lane & Leonard For Not Doing Things The Right Way

What you are looking at here is a screen cap of the "Keep Lane, Leonard for water district" headline in a bizarre endorsement editorial in Fort Worth's Pravda, also known as the Star-Telegram.

The entire editorial is senseless, but even before you get to that senselessness, the headline and sub-headline are equally senseless.

Endorse Lane and Leonard for re-election, while at the same time saying change is needed because the TRWD does not always do things the right way?

Not the right way? Like when Jim Lane finagled a TRWD rescue for his bankrupt friend by getting the TRWD to pay far above market value for the bankrupt friend's land on which the world's first drive-in movie theater of the 21st century was built?

Of course the Star-Telegram follows the 7th Street Gang's party line by bringing up the Dallas businessman bogeyman, while doing so very hypocritically. In the editorial we read the following paragraph....

Countering the big-dollar financial support for their challengers, Leonard and Lane are backed by a political action committee that had raised almost $500,000 as of early April from well-known Dallas and Fort Worth business leaders including Ed Bass, Ross Perot Jr. and Alice Walton.

Followed a few paragraphs later by this....

More than 97 percent of their financing, a total of almost $100,000 in the first report April 9, is from Dallas hotel executive Monty Bennett, who is also suing TRWD to redirect the pipeline while campaigning against what he calls a “heavy-handed” agency.

So, in the Star-Telegram's corrupt way of looking at the local world it is okay for the TRWD incumbents to get over a half million dollars from Dallas businessmen who have vested interests in keeping the TRWD's crony capitalism un-disturbed. While it is somehow an outrage that a Fort Worth hotel owner, who also does business in Dallas, and who does not want the TRWD to take some of his land, has donated less than 100,000 dollars to the TRWD opponent's campaign.

And let me add that that 97 percent figure the Star-Telegram cites is deceptive. Why not cite the most recent financial report, instead of the first one? Because the percentage would no longer be 97, due to the flood of donations from the fed up public to the Bickley/Von Luckner campaign.

And then there is this editorial gem...

Lane and Leonard also want to continue work on Panther Island, a different $900-million-plus downtown project repairing worn-out levees while adding retail shops, restaurants and apartments on the river’s north bank.

It amuses me how the locals who follow the party line, like sheep, jumped right on board with the ridiculous Panther Island new name for The Boondoggle. One would have thought they learned their lesson after their Sundance Square embarrassment, where for decades Fort Worth's few out of town tourists were confused as to where the square was that the Sundance Square signs pointed to. Usually a helpful local would point to the big parking lots, where, ironically, an actually square was finally built, goofily named Sundance Square Plaza.

And now we have Panther Island, where there is no island, where that which is referred to as an island will only be somewhat surrounded by water only if a ditch is dug to divert some Trinity River water under three little bridges currently being built in slow motion over dry land.

The Star-Telegram thinks Lane and Leonard want to continue working on the imaginary island? Does the Star-Telegram not hold the TRWD board at all responsible for the fact that the Trinity River Uptown Central City Panther Island Vision has become America's Biggest Boondoggle? With very little to show for well over a decade of boondoggling?

And then there is this shoddy cheap shot...

Both Bickley and Von Luckner question project spending and describe TRWD as secretive and crony-riddled. But neither seems familiar with basic state and regional water plans or prepared for the board’s primary task.

Really? Upon what does the Star-Telegram base claiming that Bickley and Von Lucker are unfamiliar with basic state and regional water plans and are not prepared for the board's primary task?

Oh, I forget to mention the stupidest item in that paragraph about Panther Island....

"Panther Island, a different $900-million-plus downtown project repairing worn-out levees."

Worn out levees? This is the first time I have read that those levees which have kept the downtown Fort Worth zone flood-free, for well over half a century, as being worn out.  Exactly in what way does the Star-Telegram think those massive levees are worn out?

And then the Star-Telegram ends its endorsement editorial with....

With their legacy of community leadership, they are best-positioned to help reshape a more responsive board. The Star-Telegram Editorial Board recommends Jim Lane and Martha “Marty” Leonard for the Tarrant Regional Water District board.

Their legacy of community leadership? That legacy is what should get them fired by the voters, and not endorsed by Fort Worth's sad excuse for a local newspaper.

Community leadership? Leading Fort Worth to the distinction of currently hosting America's Biggest Boondoggle?

They are best positioned to help shape a more responsive board? They have been on that un-responsive board the entire time it has been un-responsive. In other words they are responsible for the board being un-responsive.

Legacy? Like the legacy of finagling shady deals using taxpayer funds to rescue a bankrupt friend?

I don't know how the Star-Telegram editorial board can spew this nonsense without being embarrassed by it. 

Friday, April 24, 2015

So Far There Have Been No Murders In The TRWD Board Election

A few minutes ago via an incoming phone call I was told about a TRWD board candidates forum that will be taking place next Wednesday at the Central Library in downtown Fort Worth.

A few minutes later an incoming email had a link to a Fort Worth Business Press article you see partly screen capped here.

Richard Connor, he being the FWBP publisher, pretty much sums up the soap opera drama that TRWD board elections have become in Lights, camera, action! TRWD brings drama to the polls.

The last three paragraphs include the info you need to attend next Wednesday's public forum, along with the news that so far there have been no murders in the TRWD.....

As a newspaper, we are trying to separate fact from fiction, both with our news coverage and by arranging a public forum featuring the water board candidates. The forum will be held at 5:30 p.m. Wednesday, April 29, at the Central Library in downtown Fort Worth, 500 W. Third St. (corner of Third and Lamar, two blocks from the Tarrant County Courthouse).

There have been no murders in the TRWD version of Chinatown – not yet, anyway – and no one’s nose has been slashed, but plenty of noses are already out of joint. With early voting beginning April 27 and political observers predicting that up to $2 million could be spent on the campaign, it’s virtually certain that rhetorical mayhem will run amok by the time May 9 rolls around.

You might want to grab some popcorn. The water board election won’t win any Academy Awards (Chinatown was nominated for 11, won 1) but it should be quite a show.

Is It Time To Pull The Mismanaged Plug On America's Biggest Boondoggle?

Yesterday, while watching the video in the blog post titled Watch Fort Worth's Cowboy Napoleon Get Waterlooed By Craig Bickley & Michele Von Luckner Craig Bickley said something which brought to my mind that which you see here, that being J.D. Granger and his kids cheering for beer and going nuts for runner's butts.

What Craig Bickley said was something about the TRWD needing some adult supervision.

When I heard the adult supervision line I took it to be a reference to J.D. Granger's inept mangling of the Trinity River Uptown Central City Panther Island Vision Boondoggle.

Regarding The Boondoggle, part of that which Craig Bickley said which triggered the Cowboy Napoleon's nonsense filled rant was about The Boondoggle.

Following is my best attempt at transcribing what Craig Bickley said which triggered the Cowboy Napoleon's unfortunate outburst...

"If you look at the Trinity River, whatever the name is now, it is one of the worst managed projects I have ever seen, having gone from a two hundred million something project to now close to a billion dollar project and all they've done is put up an amphitheater, built a restaurant, and started building three bridges over dry land. So, you look at a project like that and you wonder where is our money going? The project is completely backwards. They are trying to get people to get into a nasty river. Why don't you clean up the river first?"

Well. I am assuming by "amphitheater" Mr. Bickley is referring to what The Boondoggle calls Panther Island Pavilion. Where there is no island or pavilion. Mr. Bickley is being very kind in referring to that outhouse serviced eyesore as an amphitheater.

I digress.

So, regarding The Boondoggle being one of the worst managed projects Craig Bickley has ever seen, let's turn our attention back to The Boondoggle's manager, J.D. Granger.

The Trinity River Central City Uptown Panther Island  Vision Boondoggle is a relatively simple project. As we learned in a blogging from a week or two ago titled The Incredible Alternative Universe Of J.D. Granger & America's Biggest Boondoggle J.D. Granger's involvement with The Boondoggle began in 1999.

In 2006 one of J.D.'s drinking buddies, the TRWD's Jim Oliver, hired J.D., apparently with no TRWD board input, to be the Executive Director of what has become America's Biggest Boondoggle.

J.D. Granger is paid well over $100,000 a year to mis-manage The Boondoggle.

If The Boondoggle was a well run public works project of the sort other town's manage to accomplish, the Trinity River Vision would have long ago become something the people of Fort Worth could see, and possibly enjoy and benefit from.

The Boondoggle dawdling along in slow motion greatly amps up the cost. Just consider the fact that J.D. has been paid over $100,000 a year for years longer than he would have been paid if The Boondoggle was engineered and managed like public works projects are managed in towns which do such things the right way.

Fully funded with a project timeline schedule.

And get them done. On time.

Not the corrupt, nepotism tainted, damn the public, Fort Worth Way.

In addition to J.D. Granger being paid for years after the project should have been completed, what about the salaries of all the other people The Boondoggle employs, being employed all those extra years?

By now J.D. Granger should have been deep into messing up whatever new job his mama got him, instead of still drawing money from The Boondoggle, and the taxpayers.

Regarding the reference to nepotism. In looking for the blogging with the photo of J.D. Granger and his kids touting their beer consumption I happened upon a blogging on that subject, titled Today We Learn How TRWD Nepotism Can Lead To Tacky Cheesy Signs. In that blogging there is the following paragraph....

Speaking of Matt Oliver. Does anyone know how many of the Tarrant Regional Water District's General Manager Jim Oliver's relatives are nepotistically employed by the TRWD?

I believe Matt Oliver is the son of the guy who hired J.D. And he was J.D. Granger's accomplice in the Beer Butt Sign Scandal.

Since that blogging from way back last June we have learned that hiring his son is just the tip of the Jim Oliver/TRWD nepotism iceberg. In a blogging from a couple weeks ago, In Fort Worth Weekly Is J.D. Granger Exhibit A For The TRWD Prosecution Or The Defense? mention was made of Fort Worth Weekly's mention of multiple examples of TRWD nepotism, including the controversial hiring of J.D. Granger.

So, here is what I currently think about America's Biggest Boondoggle.

I think it is time to pull the plug on The Boondoggle. Stop with the slow motion building of three little bridges over dry land connecting the mainland to an imaginary island. Fire J.D. Granger and all his minions.

Then re-think the entire concept of re-developing the Trinity River as it flows past downtown Fort Worth. I have long thought some iterations of the ever changing project were a good idea. What I have long thought was not a good idea was how the project was being implemented.

You do not hire the unqualified son of a local congresswoman to run a public works project in the hope it will motivate his mama to secure federal dollars. That is just a wrong thing to do, a wrong thing which would not be tolerated in progressive, democratic, non-oligarch run parts of America.

The merits of the project should have been sold to the public who then should have been allowed to vote on it, yes or no. If a public works projects has merit the public usually can be convinced to go along with it. I witnessed this more times than I can remember when I lived in a more progressive, more democratic part of America.

If the people of Fort Worth can be convinced to help finance a public works project, then design that project with a project timeline.

And get it done in the lifetime of people currently living on the planet....

Battening Down My North Texas Hatches Before Incoming Weather Drama

I acquired the North Texas storm forecast you see screen capped here via Facebook this morning from my favorite North Texas Meteorologist, John Basham.

The forecast for tomorrow's Tandy Hills Prairie Fest is for a cloud free sky with no tornado, strong winds, lightning, downpour or hail threat.

The same can not be said for the hours leading up to tomorrow's Prairie Fest. I suspect today's and tonight's storming may wreak havoc with getting the Prairie Fest assembled.

Below is the John Basham Facebook forecast in its entirety....

METEOROLOGIST NOTES - 300AM FRIDAY APRIL 24, 2015 - If you live in North Texas YOU MUST pay attention to the weather later this afternoon and this evening. Not only is there a potential for extremely large hail, but the potential exists for a few devastating Tornadoes across North Central Texas and the Dalls/Fort Worth Metroplex. Devastating Tornadoes are defined as Tornadoes with an Enhanced Fujita Scale of EF2 or greater. That would mean Tornadoes with winds of 111mph to over 200mph. While we must wait to see what early morning storms leave us in the way of surface boundaries and what kind of afternoon heating is in place before we know for sure our total risk. With all available data we have right now we need to issue an alert as early as possible for preparedness. We'll be issuing forecasts throughout the day today and updates as needed. Official forecasts are available from the National Weather Service or Storm Prediction Center websites. For rapid alerts and warnings a battery operated NOAA Weather Radio is your most reliable source for real-time warning information. THIS IS NOT AN NWS PRODUCT. Meteorologist John Austin Basham Storm Spotter

Thursday, April 23, 2015

Watch Fort Worth's Cowboy Napoleon Get Waterlooed By Craig Bickley & Michele Von Luckner

What you are looking at here is the five candidates running for a position on the Tarrant Regional Water District board, at a recent forum, debate type of public meeting.

The man holding the microphone is Jim Lane, also known as the Cowboy Napoleon. To the left of the Cowboy Napoleon is Marty Leonard.

The Cowboy Napoleon and Marty Leonard are the TRWD board incumbents. That would make candidates Craig Bickley, Michele Von Luckner and an Annis, whose first name I am not remembering right now, on the other side of Jim Lane.

Below you can watch a YouTube video of this forum. The video is filmed in what I think is known as the cinéma vérité style. That or it was recorded using a phone.

The video is about 48 minutes long. There is a sort of Mayberry RFD feel to it. Mayberry RFD was America's #1 sitcom back in the late 1960s. Mayberry RFD was part of what were known as the CBS rural hayseed comedies, all of which were cancelled early in the 70s when CBS decided to become more urban.

I digress.

However, regarding Mayberry RFD, that first came to my mind when I heard the charming southern twang of Marty Leonard, followed by the Cowboy Napoleon's twang. With the other three sounding more urban, with no twang.

The moderator of this forum seemed just a bit inept. The questions also seemed just a bit inept, for the most part.

However, at about 37 minutes into the video Craig Bickley gets a bit pointed about the Trinity River Vision Boondoggle and a couple other points.

Craig Bickley getting pointed was followed by the Cowboy Napoleon sounding just a bit nuts. I don't know if this moment would be the Cowboy Napoleon's Waterloo if it were to be widely seen. I have also been told this was not the first time Jim Lane has come across as a bit wackydoodle at one of these type events.

During his goofy rant, while attacking the bonafides of Craig Bickley, Jim Lane actually said that the TRWD has won every award in the nation.


Every award in the nation? The Oscar for Best Boondoggle? The Emmy for Best Beer Party? The Grammy for Best Music Festival?

The only award I can think of that has gotten national recognition for the TRWD is having the TRWD's Trinity River Vision Panther Island Uptown Central City Project widely known as America's Biggest Boondoggle.

At another point in Jim Lane's rant he opined that if Craig Bickley actually lived in Fort Worth he might be aware of the thousands of people floating in the Trinity River on Thursday nights.

The Cowboy Napoleon thinks thousands of people float in the Trinity River on Thursday nights? Has he actually been to one of J.D. Granger's Rockin' the River Happy Hour Inner Tube Floats?

After Jim Lane finished with his embarrassing rant, which included ranting the boilerplate TRWD incumbent's evil Dallas businessman, Monty Bennett, TRWD takeover plot accusation, Craig Bickley and Michele Von Luckner retorted rather well.

One would have thought they were the lawyers in the room.

If Jim Lane and Marty Leonard and their crony co-horts truly believe the Trinity River is a good thing to immerse people in, why don't they lead by example and join those thousands of imaginary river dunkers when Rockin' the River starts up again in a couple months?

Anyway, for your voting enlightenment, the aforementioned YouTube video....

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

A Happy Tandy Hills Earth Day With Fort Worth's Beatnik Loving Mayor

Fort Worth Mayor, Tom McCann signing
"National Beatnik Week" proclamation, 1960. (from LIFE magazine)
Or as the Tandy Hills Godfather, Don Young, put it today in an email's subject line:

Happy Triple bEarthday to Tandy Hills 2015.

According to Olive the Prairie Dog's parental unit, way back on this current day of April 22, in 1960, Fort Worth's beatnik-loving mayor, Tom McCann, and the Fort Worth City Council made the momentous decision to spend $138,250 for the 160 acre chunk of land now known as the Tandy Hills Natural Area.

As for the other parts of the triple part of today's bEarthday and the Tandy Hills.

Ten years after Fort Worth's beatnik-loving major decided to buy the Tandy Hills the first Earth Day took place on April 22, 1970.

And then, 40 years later, on April 22, 2010, the Friends of the Tandy Hills Natural Area began a partnership deal with the City of Fort Worth where the city joined in the efforts to protect and restore the Tandy Hills.

The most interesting, to me, part of today's Earth Day Tandy Hills information is the fact that, apparently, way back in the 1960s, Fort Worth had itself a progressive mayor who liked the precursors of hippies, that being beatniks.

How did Fort Worth go from having a progressive beatnik-loving mayor to the era of mayor entities like Kay Granger, Mike Moncrief and Betsy Price? Can you picture any of those three signing a "National Beatnik Week" proclamation?

Well, okay, to be totally fair, which I always am, I guess I can see Betsy Price signing such a proclamation. There is something about Mayor Betsy that makes me think she could easily have been an active hippie during the hippie era. It would not shock me to learn that Mayor Betsy was at Woodstock being a Grateful Dead groupie.

Then again, I am not at all sure the Grateful Dead were at Woodstock....

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

A Long Walk To Albertsons Under An Ominous Sky Thinking About Prairie Fest Chicks

Today as I hiked up the hill that leads to my neighborhood Albertsons, as you can see, I was walking under a very ominous looking sky.

In the photo I am looking east towards Dallas, about to turn south onto the Albertsons parking lot.

One of Fort Worth's lonely little public transit buses waits at the Albertsons bus stop, hoping to pick up a passenger.

The Fort Worth bus is that little white thing on the right side of the road in the mid-distance.

The forecast today is for some raining and thunder booming. With louder booming and more rain on the menu for tomorrow and Thursday. By Saturday, that being the day of the 10th annual Tandy Hills Prairie Fest, blue sky is scheduled to return with no thunder booming on the current horizon.

I do not know how I am going to work in both the Prairie Fest and my regularly scheduled Town Talk treasure hunt on Saturday. I'll likely figure it out.

I heard from a fairly reliable source that Mary, who has a little farm, will be at the Prairie Fest towing a wagon full of chicks. I am fairly certain these chicks are of the baby poultry type, not the performs nightly at Baby Dolls type chicks.

But, I won't know for sure til I eye witness the Prairie Fest chicks on Saturday...

A Suggestion To Vote Out The TRWD Crony Capitalist Gang

Well, the mystery is over as to who the TRWD board candidate who got Al Gore-ed in the last TRWD board election, John Basham, is voting for in the upcoming TRWD board election.

I learned via Facebook, this morning, the not too surprising news that John Basham is supporting Craig Bickley and Michele Von Luckner as the ONLY choices deserving a vote.

The Facebook John Basham TRWD voting announcement in its entirety....

TRWD Update: Okay, I've been quiet on this election this year (publicly), but I've been inundated with questions about who I am supporting. I'll make it simple, the ONLY choices for the TRWD board are Craig Bickley and Michele Von Luckner! These two people represent the very finest of citizen servants who will work for YOU rather than the crony capitalist gang who are getting the contracts, kick-backs, and jobs right now. YOU MUST vote for these two to make a difference. AND, YOUR VOTE REALLY DOES MATTER! After the thousands of votes were recounted in my last TRWD election, I missed beating Board President Vic Henderson by 81 votes! 81!.... It really does matter. Craig and MIchele will hit the ground running day one and help Mary Kelleher finish the incredible work she has started in trying bring open, honest, and responsive government to the TRWD. Early voting starts Monday.... Please go vote and make a real change in your government.

Monday, April 20, 2015

An Actual Signature Bridge Built A Short Distance From Fort Worth

No, what you are looking at here is not a hyper-realistic, super saturated Brian Luenseresque type artist's rendering of what one of America's Biggest Boondoggle's bridges might look like if the bridges ever are able to carry traffic from the mainland to the imaginary island.

The water under the bridge probably was a good clue that this was not one of Fort Worth's Boondoggle's "dry" bridges.

What you are looking at is a Panoramio photo by Salaticco of an actual signature bridge built this century in a town near Fort Worth called Dallas.

That would make this the Margaret Hunt Hill Bridge. This bridge, built over a body of water known as the Trinity River, began to be built in the spring of 2007. The bridge was completed and open for traffic in March of 2012.

One year longer than four after construction began.

Fort Worth's infamous Boondoggle is scheduled to take four years to build three non-signature, simple, small bridges over dry land.

Both town's bridges are part of their "river visions". Both town's "river visions" have funding woes. The Dallas "river vision", just like Fort Worth's, sees three bridges, but Dallas has fallen short of the funds needed to build the other two signature bridges.

While Fort Worth, with worse funding problems, dropped the idea of building actual interesting, signature bridges, and opted instead to build three very ordinary bridges, in slow motion.

I suspect Dallas will see a completion of its "river vision" long before Fort Worth nears such a milestone.

No unqualified local congresswoman's son was hired to oversee the Dallas "river vision"......

Sunday, April 19, 2015

The 7th Street Gang Is Not Happy With The Fort Worth Business Press For Telling The Truth About Monty Bennett

Way back in late March I blogged The Raw Galling Hypopcritical Hubris Of TRWD Propaganda Is Appalling in which I verbalized the disgust I felt at the TRWD propaganda demonizing Monty Bennett as an evil Dallas businessman trying to take over Fort Worth's water.

What prompted that blogging on that particular day was the fact that I was a bit surprised that the Fort Worth Business Press had printed a fair and unbiased article about Monty Bennett and his issues with the TRWD titled Monty Bennett: Businessman, water district activist.

I was surprised at this article because previously the Fort Worth Business Press had seemed to be onboard with the 7th Street Gang's Good Ol' Boys and Girls and their propaganda campaign to spew falsehoods about Monty Bennett.

Well, apparently the Fort Worth Business Press took some flack from the 7th Street Gang for not following the party line.

This led Fort Worth Business Press publisher, Richard Connor, to write an editorial titled Love him or hate him, Monty Bennett is a newsmaker in which Connor let's us know that the 7th Street Gang did not like that he had gone off the reservation and printed facts, rather than their patented propaganda.

You can read the entire editorial, but I will just share the paragraph which contains the bit about the Good Ol' Boy and Girls being upset that Connor and the FW Business Press were not following the Fort Worth Way script....

What has surprised us at the Fort Worth Business Press is the consternation expressed by local businessmen that we would profile the water district’s leading critic and nemesis, Monty Bennett, a Dallas hotelier. Bennett has been fighting the water board for several years, trying to prevent it from running a water pipeline through his 1,300 acre ranch in Henderson County. While he cloaks his disdain – dare we say hatred? – for the water board in criticism of its lack of transparency, alleged violations of open meetings laws and nepotism, his real source of anger is parochial.

By the end of that paragraph Mr. Connor seems to be back towing the 7th Street Gang party line.

One of my favorite Fort Worth seasoned citizens, Clyde Picht, commented on the FWBP editorial with a comment filled with the sort of facts that make Fort Worth's Good Ol' Boy and Girl Network so uncomfortable.

Below is Clyde Picht's comment in its entirety....

Monty Bennett obviously has an ax to grind over the threat of eminent domain being used to take part of his property for a pipeline that according to the TRWD's own study will bring water to Fort Worth only in an emergency and if Dallas doesn't need the water.

But if TRWD is so quick to use eminent domain to get land, why didn't they use it to get Carl Bell's 37.679 acres near La Grave field? A 50 acre parcel, rife with environmental pollution, was appraised at $12,000,000. It's probably worth less than that but in a moment of charity the TRWD paid Bell $16,000,000 for the 37+ acres.

Bell had shut down the CATS ball team and was reportedly near or in bankruptcy. One might wonder why TRWD is so generous with their money. The reason is that it's not their money (which is really taxpayers' money) that's being spent. The $4,000,000 largesse comes right out of the pockets of Fort Worth taxpayers.

In comments published in the Fort Worth Star-Telegram, June 12, 2005, Jim Oliver, the TRWD Director stated that "backers (of Trinity Uptown) might seek more local money" and planner James Toal stated "The taxpayers will not be left holding the bag." That was when Trinity River Vision was projected to cost $435M. (Also see a S-T editorial, "Tax money flows to the river" July 19, 2009)

And then there is the comment from the man who probably had enough votes to join Mary Kelleher on the TRWD Board, but, you know, stuff happens, like trouble counting votes. Below is the comment from John Basham in its entirety....

Richard, Simply put; You are experiencing "The Fort Worth Way", as the former Mayor would say. You must understand that the 7th Street Downtown Croney Crew are used to the 'News' printed by the Startled Gram. Or as I like to call it; "PRAVDA Fort Worth". How DARE the FWBP print an article containing NOTHING but truth. It doesn't matter that the story was both fair to both sides as well as truthful. You MUST Carry the Water (I couldn't resist either) for the 7SB Cronies or else they shoot the messenger. Chin up, there was a time when 'JOURNALISTS' gauged the accuracy and fairness of their stories by how much it inflamed each side. But alas Ft Worth does NOT have a daily Newspaper any longer, instead they have a public relations arm for 'The Fort Worth Way'.... Hold the line. Kudos to Marice Richter and yourself for a job well done.


I wish Monty Bennett really was trying to take over Fort Worth. Think of the damage he could do if he bought the Fort Worth Star-Telegram. I know Mr. Bennett is a successful businessman, so it is unlikely he'd want to buy a money losing sinking operation like the Star-Telegram.

Then again, maybe Monty Bennett would like the challenge of turning the Star-Telegram into a real newspaper. He could maybe become a Texas version of Citizen Kane....

Saturday, April 18, 2015

A Last Minute BBQ Invite Has Me Heading To Washington This Afternoon If I Can Book A Flight

Early on this next to last Saturday afternoon of April I was in the midst of the preparations needed in order for me to make the trek northwest from my current location to Lake Eagle Mountain, to the boat formerly known as Laurderdale's on the Lake, now known as Boondocks, when I got a text message from Spencer Jack's dad with an invitation that has me making a change of plans and heading further northwest than Lake Eagle Mountain.

Apparently this afternoon my favorite nephews, Joey and Jason, are throwing an impromptu BBQ potluck celebrating their parental units 40th wedding anniversary, extending the invite all the members of the original wedding party.

If I catch a plane by two I should be in Mount Vernon in plenty of time, what with moving back in time a couple hours by heading to the Pacific time zone.

I don't know what I can do about that bringing a favorite dish part of the invite.

I remember that original wedding quite clearly. My brother was annoyed at me because I made it at the last minute, not making it home the day before for the rehearsal. I got in my wedding tuxedo about an hour before the event. Only a couple of us in the wedding party successfully fit into our tuxedos.

I wonder if Jason and Joey know that the best man at their parental unit's wedding totally split open his pants right before the wedding started. That's right boys, Steve Mueller's tux tail covered his pants, which were split wide open.

I do not know if my brother and his first wife will be at this 40th wedding anniversary BBQ. I guess time will tell....

Another Comment From A TRWD Propaganda Shill With A Pathological Liar Feel To It

Earlier this month I blogged about A Comment From A TRWD Progaganda Shill Has Me Feeling Chesapeake Energy Deja Vu.

The referenced comment was made on  a blogging from way back in February.

Something seemed fake about that comment, like it was the work of the propaganda team trying to re-elect the TRWD hacks who call themselves Jim Lane and Marty Leonard.

Well, now another comment has arrived to the same February blog post, and this comment also seems fake and the work of the TRWD propagandists. First the comment and then we will see what I have to say about it...

Anonymous has left a new comment on your post "Tarrant Regional Water District Corruption: The Website":

I hope the other candidates are better than Mrs Michele Von Luckner and Mr Craig Bickley. Just to give you a little background...I have tried to cut back on the flood of telemarketing calls I have been getting, I have signed up on every "do not call" list there is (Local, State and National). But guess what happened today? Yep, Mr Bickley and Mrs Von Luckner are using telemarketers to bother people at home. Apparently, they feel their need to get people to vote for them is more important than my wish for a quiet night at home. When I contacted Mrs Von Luckner she seemed to think it was my fault and that she had no idea who in her campaign could be hiring the telemarketers or how they got my number. I asked for the person in her campaign who was in charge of the telemarketing and either she didn't know who that person was, or choose to lie and say she didn't know. I don't know who the incumbents or other candidates are in this election, but considering the tactics these two wish to employ against the voters of this area, my vote will be for anyone but them.

This comment maker is Anonymous, yet leaves a supposed email address?

So, we are to believe this person has been bombarded by telemarketing calls. And claims not to know who the incumbents are. Or who the candidates are.


Somehow this person knows how to spell the names of Craig Bickley and Michele Von Luckner?

Including knowing that Ms. Von Luckner spells her first name with only one 'l'?

Grumpy Anonymous somehow found Michele Von Luckner's phone number and called her? Only to be treated rudely by Ms. Von Luckner? Who claimed not to know who was in charge of her telemarketing? And then suggests Ms. Von Luckner is a liar?

Well, someone in this scenario is a liar and it ain't Michele Von Luckner.

Years ago I knew a humongous pathological liar whose lies usually contained at least one fatal mistake that made it obvious she was once again making something up.

This comment from Grumpy Anonymous has that same feel to it.

I think it is a bit obvious that this comment came from somewhere in the TRWD incumbent's campaign operation.

I think it is also a bit obvious that it is more than a little stupid to be making this type comment on my blog. And then to make a follow up comment to the same old blog post is even stupider........

The 2014 TRWD Annual Propaganda Report Does Not Mention America's Biggest Boondoggle

I have been asked more than once if I have received the eagerly anticipated TRWD Tarrant Regional Water District Annual Report, usually timed to arrive a few weeks before an election.

Well, I have yet to receive the eagerly anticipated report, in hard copy form, nor has anyone else I know who lives on the east side of the Berlin Wall, also known as I-35, that being the freeway which divides Fort Worth into West Fort Worth and East Fort Worth.

Methinks the Good Ol' Boy and Girl Network, also known as The 7th Street Gang, which continues to try and run Fort Worth in what is known as the Fort Worth Way, realizes they have lost East Fort Worth and thus are not wasting any of their half million dollar plus war chest on sending any of their propaganda to the opposition side of town.

Or maybe the mail is just late and the eagerly anticipated TRWD Annual Report will soon arrive.

Even though a hard copy has not shown up in my mailbox, I did receive a digital copy, sent from a mole inside the opposition's camp in West Fort Worth.

Reading the digital copy I think I can tell why this propaganda has not yet arrived in the opposition side of town, due to this latest TRWD Annual Report being a bit embarrassing in both its lapses and its claims.

I think the oddest thing I read in the TRWD Annual Report is the claim that due to the TRWD's conservation efforts they have managed to save 31 billion gallons of water.


And how do they manage to measure this water they claim to have saved?

For about a month a massive leak has been spouting from the TRWD's water tank on Bridge Street in the aforementioned East Fort Worth. Does that leaking water get deducted from the amount claimed to have been conserved?

In the ten pages of TRWD Annual Report propaganda there is absolutely no mention made of America's Biggest Boondoggle, a boondoggle for which the TRWD is totally responsible.

There is no mention made of The Boondoggle's three little bridges now, supposedly, under construction, with an absurd four year project construction timeline for three simple little bridges being built over dry land, connecting the mainland to an imaginary island.

There is no mention made of The Boondoggle's latest name for itself.

Panther Island.

I can't imagine why the TRWD Annual Report would not want to make mention of an imaginary island or the bridges being built in slow motion to connect to that imaginary island.

There is no mention made in the TRWD's Annual Report of the huge success of the Rockin' the River Happy Hour Inner Tube Floats in the polluted Trinity River.

Or the multiple beer festivals, with music, taking place at the TRWD's tacky Panther Island Pavilion venue, where there is no island or pavilion, but there are world class outhouses the likes of which likely exist in no other big city in America.

There is no mention made, in the TRWD's Annual Report, of the success of the Coyote Drive-In. That being the world's first drive-in movie theater of the 21st century, brought about by TRWD board incumbent Jim Lane's good-natured finagling which used TRWD funds to rescue a bankrupt friend by paying twice the market value, with TRWD public funds, for the land on which the Coyote Drive-In was built.

There is no mention made in the TRWD Annual Report of their foray into the restaurant business in partnership with Fort Worth celebrity chef, Tim Love.

In the section of the TRWD Annual Report about all the recreational wonders the TRWD has delivered to the people, there is no mention made of the TRWD's Cowtown Wakepark, that being the world's premiere urban wakeboard park, according to delusional propaganda spewed by The Boondoggle's #1 spewer, J.D. Granger.

Also in the TRWD Annual Report's recreational wonders section there is no mention made of Panther Ice, the being the ice rink that shows up for a few weeks in winter in the Coyote Drive-In complex.

There is no mention in the TRWD Annual Report of the lawsuit the TRWD lost, and spent millions losing, in a goofy attempt to take water from Oklahoma.

What you will read in the TRWD Annual Report is a lot of puffed up propaganda and self-serving spin.

And where in the TRWD Annual Report were the details of the board's proudest moment of 2014, that being the censuring of Mary Kelleher?

One would have thought there would have been at least one photo of the army of protesters who attended that censure meeting, in support of Mary Kelleher, both inside the meeting room, and outside, because that one meeting pretty much defined what is wrong with the current majority of the TRWD board....

Friday, April 17, 2015

Someone Needs To Put An End To J.D. Granger's Visionary Trinity River Beer Parties

Yesterday I blogged The Incredible Alternative Universe Of J.D. Granger & America's Biggest Boondoggle in which we learned how long America's Biggest Boondoggle has been boodoggling along and how it came to be that Congresswoman Kay Granger's son, J.D., got the job of directing The Boondoggle, almost 10 years ago, earning around a million bucks during the course of his tenure of turning a public works project the public has never voted for into America's Biggest Boondoggle.

Today I was flipping through the latest issue of Fort Worth Weekly, when, somewhere past the bizarre cover article asking the important question "How is burlesque sexy and empowering?" which seems to be one more indicator that FW Weekly has lost its way since it lost Gayle Reaves, when I came upon the advertisement you see here, advertising a Big Music & Beer Event at The Boondoggle's tacky "music venue" Panther Island Pavilion, where there is no island or pavilion, but where the restroom facilities are outhouses surrounded by concrete.

Way back in 2006 when the TRWD's Chief Henchman, Jim Oliver, thought it was a good idea to hire a low level district attorney with no project management experience to oversee what was then called Trinity Uptown, before it became the Trinity River Vision, after J.D. Granger saw what needed to be seen, eventually turning that "vision" into an imaginary island, did Jim Oliver realize this was the direction Trinity Uptown was going to go down?

A Frat Boy's Dreamworld.

In 2006, when he hired J.D. Granger did Jim Oliver know then that within a few short years this poorly conceived, ill-executed project would evolve into sponsoring Rockin' the River Happy Hour Inner Tube Floats, at a pathetic "music venue" touted by J.D. Granger as being a world class event location and the only one of its kind in any town in Texas?

In 2006 did Jim Oliver foresee that nine years later, in 2015, all he would see of the 2006 Trinity Uptown "vision" would be J.D. Granger's beer parties in various forms, a restaurant, a drive-in movie theater, a brewery, a wakeboard pond and three little bridges being constructed in slow motion over dry land to connect to an imaginary island?

Why would anyone vote for anyone who has had anything to do with foisting America's Biggest Boondoggle on the mighty fine city of Fort Worth, Texas?

My Favorite Nephews Are Looking Forward To A Sunny Weekend With Their Replacement Aunts

Incoming email from one of my favorite nephews this morning.

No subject in email subject line.

Text in body of email----

One of our replacement aunts took this pic of Mount Rainier today inbound from Arizona to the Great PNW. Looking forward to this sunny weekend.

The sunny weekend to which the favorite nephew refers is this weekend's Pacific Northwest weather forecast of clear skies, with temperatures in the low 70s.

Temperatures in the low 70s are pretty much considered to be a major heat wave in the PNW. I did not think that odd til I moved to Texas and got myself acclimated to temperatures above 100, with temperatures in the 70s feeling cold.

Below is a screen cap of the temperature weather bragging said nephew shared on Facebook.

After I saw said nephew shared the the above temperature information I commented with the current temperature/weather info for my location...

Reading said nephew's temperature info on Facebook prompted his mother to tell us that she can't take this heat anymore, so she is having air conditioning installed.

I did not share with my PNW relatives the fact that at our current temperatures in the 70s we open our windows in Texas and enjoy the natural air conditioning. At those temperatures the PNW is experiencing, in the 60s, many of us at my current location fire up our heating systems.

As for that view from Aunt Chris' window seat, that sure is nothing like what one sees when one flies into D/FW International Airport. I remember one time flying out of Sea-Tac on my way back to Texas with the pilot telling us if we looked out the right side of the plane we would see Mount St. Helens doing some steamy hiccuping.

It always causes me to have a strange feeling of contented happiness when I fly north and reach the part of the journey where I look out and see the Cascade Mountains and their sea of peaks far into the distance, with a volcano popping up here and there.