THE STATE OF OUR NATION

The Bull Market that began under President Obama in March 2009 has lasted nine years, five months and 13 days, a record that few would have predicted coming out of the big recession. For all its longevity and gains, the final verdict on the Bull Market won’t be known until it ends What the White House, Trump and allies don’t want you to know is that the federal budget is already in very bad shape. The Federal Government’s red ink this year is already 21% above 2017. The Trump deficits will soon exceed $1 trillion and will only get worse in years ahead. When the vacationing congressmen return in September they are set to consider anther tax cut before the mid-term election. That will reduce revenue by an additional trillion dollars. How big will the annual deficit get in the years ahead? The congressional budget office is already projecting it will exceed $1.5 trillion. Many in congress and the Trump Administration seem to be hell bent on ignoring the deficit and national debt and reducing revenue even further. Predictions by Asset, is that stocks will plunge and a Bear Market will begin. Personally I don’t believe the fall will start before Feb. 2019. A new poll by Reliable Monmouth on Tuesday showed that 35% believe the country is headed in the right direction but a whopping 59% say it’s headed in the wrong direction. The poll also showed that only 30% of the citizens believe Trump is hiring the right people, 60% say he hires the wrong people. A majority believe that because of tariffs and trade wars Trump is putting America on a path to fiscal ruin.*****I have to move on. Please come along, I promise it won’t do you no harm

CRUZ HASN’T EARNED ANOTHER TERM

Over the years, since Lyndon Johnson was elected, Texas has had some great U.S. senators. Presently Texas has two senators from the same party which is different than in the past, example, Ralph Yarbrough, democrat and John Tower, republican. A state is always better off with senators from different parties. Sen. John Coryn is not bad. He isn’t making waves, just waiting his turn to be majority or minority leader when McCormick steps down. In any case, that would be good for Texas. Ted Cruz, our other senator, started running for president shortly after he was elected. He didn’t get the nomination and refused to endorse his parties’ nominee for president. Hard to blame him for that except now he’s asking the party to save him. Ted Cruz’s claim to fame is that he shut down the government, which cost U.S. taxpayers $40 billion, with a “B” but it got him national recognition to launch his presidential campaign. I told you a couple years ago that a friend in Washington told me he was the most disliked in the senate. He has no friends there. They are in the congress like Jim Jordon, Meadows, Nunes and the radical Freedom Caucus. Cruz has accomplished absolutely nothing for Texas. He makes photo-ops, like at Santa Fe, where he said he would introduce legislation to help prevent the killing of students. He kicked that can down the road. Now I see on television that he is running and taking credit for the Harvey Recovery. He had nothing to do with that, the government did only what they were obligated to do, no more. Private donors and organizations helped the recovery. There is no doubt if Ted Cruz is re-elected, he will run for president in 2024. I’m told however, that if Trump is impeached or reprehended, or if his poll numbers fall to the mid-30’s, Ted may not wait. Some Republicans are looking for a candidate to oppose Trump. Ted Cruz should not be re-elected. He hasn’t earned it. He needs to be retired and go into another line of work. Texas deserves better than what he has given us. It will be interesting to see if he invites Trump to come to Texas to campaign for him. Trump called him “Lying Ted,” that’s the pot calling the kettle black. Trump has accused Ted’s dad of being in on the killing of JFK and he’s called Ted’s wife ugly, which she’s not. He ran the most unfavorable picture of her compared to a glamour shot of his wife. On the other hand, Cruz supports Trump’s tariffs, which hurts Texas worse than any other state. He also supports Trump’s border policy that includes taking babies away from their mothers. Ted was born in Canada. His dad was a Cuban nationalist at the time. Ted rejected his Canadian citizenship but he can’t deny the place of his birth. He, more than anyone, should appreciate the plight of the immigrants. I believe there’s a strong, silent vote out there, made up of Independents, Democrats and yes also Republicans, that will reject Ted Cruz.

TURNING BACK THE HANDS OF TIME

10 Years Ago-2008

Ferne Savoy, 91, passed away Aug. 23. Services were held Monday. For many years Ferne was a democratic poll judge and very active in the political process. She and her late husband Henry “Cush” Savoy raised a great family.*****Country star Tim McGraw and some pals will perform at Faith Hill’s “Neighbor’s Keeper Foundation Swampstock 2008” in Rayville, La., Sept. 13. Proceeds will benefit local projects. “Swampstock” will feature McGaw, Hill, Catherine Raney, Halfway to Hazard, Dierks Bently and Jason Aldean. Rayville is Tim’s hometown located 21 miles east of Monroe on Interstate 20.*****Bedbugs move into dorm rooms. They’re everywhere. The size of an apple seed, the nocturnal six-leggers hitchhike on luggage, old furniture, clothing and can live up to a year without a blood meal. Texas A&M has spent $37,000 to fly in bedbug sniffing dogs. They plan to call in a Minnesota outfit called “Temp-Air” whose eradication process heats the room overnight to 130 degrees, killing the bugs without harming students belongings.

40 Years Ago-1978

Major Inman Jr. defeats Davis Cooper in hotly contested Orange mayoral race. He will replace Paul Hale. *****B.J. Spence hosted some friends with a delicious Mexican dinner that proves even school madams can be domestic. *****Over the weekend Phyllis Guidry Hass School of Dance attended a three-day workshop in Houston. The event was presented by some of the finest professional dancers in the country. Attending were Cynthia Navarro, Belinda Muckelrath, Stephanie Hass, Nikki Gardner, Liz and Ann Lieby, Brenda Whittington and Cayla Campbell. (Editor’s note: Do you remember all those pretty girls? Most are parents and some might even be grandparents.)*****Joe C. Majors III has been accepted into the University of Texas Dental Branch at Houston. He’s a Lamar grad and son of Dr. Joe and Mary Majors. (Editor’s note: A Bridge City grad, Chuck practiced in B.C. for several years before moving to the Kerrville area. For the last 20 years he has been on the hill, on top of Caldwell, located about 23 miles from Bryan-College Station.)*****In June 1949, Arthur Colburn and his father Will built a 12 by 20 building adjacent to their home and opened the “Gingham Shoppe.” It was later enlarged to 24 by 20. This week, 29 years later, they sold the Shoppe to Jonell and Kenneth Chance. *****Ronnie Lee, a 1978 Bridge City grad and shop manager of Triple L. Honda, earned a position on the starting lineup of team Rio Bravo. He will travel to Florida for motor cross competition. *****Granger’s Seafood and Steakhouse all you can eat noon buffet is only $1.95. *****Roy and friend Conley Windell continue trek through southwest. “Leaving old Tucson we took Hwy. 82, a back road scenic route, which connected with Hwy. 80, just out of Tombstone, Ariz. Conley, an expert on the way of the cowboy, knew all about Tombstone. In the 1880s, it was a booming mining town that brought a rush of those looking to strike it rich. Gold and silver were the lure that became a magnet to thieves, card sharks, murders, rustlers and bad guys. The place came alive with hundreds of saloons, gambling halls and of course, bawdy houses. Gunfights and hangings soon made Boot Hill Cemetery famous. Tombstone is perhaps most famous for it’s gunfight at the O.K. Corral when the Earp brothers, Wyatt, Virgil and Morgan, along with friend, Doc Holliday, shot it out with the Clanton and McLaury gang. When the bullets stopped flying Billy Clanton, Tom and Frank McLaury lay dead, Ike Clanton got away but was later murdered. Morgan and Virgil needed weeks to recover, Doc was barely grazed by a bullet and Wyatt was unscathed. The famous fight took place Oct. 26, 1881. The Birdcage Theater was a saloon, theater, gambling hall and brothel. The New York Times in 1882 reported, “The Bird Cage is the wildest, wickedest night spot between Basin Street and the Barbary Coast.” One-hundred-forty bullet holes can still be found in the walls and ceiling. Conley and I walked both sides of the street and talked about what roles we would have played had we lived in those times. The Crystal Palace Saloon is a symbol of the true “Old West.” With it’s original copper ceiling, adobe walls and massive bar it is the only authentic saloon still operating. We learned on this trip how Tombstone got its name. It seems a weathered prospector named Ed Schieffelin, would venture out into the hills prospecting for the riches of silver or gold. He braved the elements and Apaches where some never returned. His friends told him many times that if he kept fooling around out there among the Apaches the only rock he would come home with would be his tombstone. In 1877, he discovered silver ore and named the mining district ‘Tombstone’ which would also become the name of the “town too tough to die.” Everyone, once in his or her lifetime should visit Tombstone. Keeping with our habit of staying off the interstate and main highways, we turned just out of Tombstone and took narrow Hwy. 80. Not knowing where this road would take us we traveled southeast. A few hours out we came up on a jewel, a big, big hole known as Bisbee, Ariz. I had never heard of it but a relative of mine might have discovered it. (To be continued next week.)

 

A FEW HAPPENINGS

We were sorry to hear of the death of Wanda Scales Sanders, age 84,  passed away Aug. 20. Our condolences to her sister Pam Honeycutt and the entire family. Service is pending as I write this. Please see our obituaries.*****A new Chrysler/Dodge dealership is coming to town. It’s a done deal and should be announced soon.*****Word is that Gov. Abbott will announce the appointment of Judge Steve Parkhurst to fill the unexpired term of Judge Buddie Hahn sometime around Sept. 1. Judge Hahn has been filling in on Tuesday and Thursdays. Steve has cleared his backlog of clients and is ready for his new career.*****On Monday, Aug. 25, a special guy, Coach Dan Ray Hooks will mark his 80th birthday. It just doesn’t seem possible. I remember him as a young assistant coach at Lamar before coming to West Orange-Stark as an assistant. As they say, “The rest is history.” What a great job he and Cornell have done putting the Mustangs at the top of the charts year after year. Happy birthday Coach Hooks, thanks for the memories.*****Another great Mustang, Mari Ellen Jacobs, celebrates her special day Aug. 22. Every year Mari Ellen does a great job for us by reporting on the Mustangs in words and pictures.***** Happy birthday also to a special friend who keeps me supplied in chocolates and also sees that I get venison sausage and sometime fresh bass filets. Marlene is Sheriff Keith Merritt’s wife but also my special friend so I won’t say anything about her reaching the age of that long ago, famous highway route sign.***** Two former Bridge City baseball players, Preston Pittman and Collin Gros, have been playing in the summer Latin League, for the Mexican Tuzos. Sunday the team won the championship against Puerto Rico, 2 to 0, on a two run homerun by Gros, who also had two of the teams three hits batting in the leadoff spot. The team advances to the state playoffs in San Antonio but according to rules non-Latinos are not eligible to play. Collin’s comment to his grandfather,, after the winning home run was, “Well, Papa, all those batting lessons at Sam Moore’s finally paid off. He’s Roy’s grandson.*****The United States has recorded 94 consecutive months of job growth, 76 of those months were under the Obama Administration.***** Ironic that three stars, all at the top of their game, all died on August 16. Babe Ruth, the gold standard in baseball, died at age 53, in 1948. The King of Rock & Roll, Elvis, died in 1977, at age 42 and Aretha Franklin, the Queen of Soul also died Aug. 16, 2018, at age 76. Aug. 16, 2018 is the same forwards and backwards. Aretha’s service will be held Aug. 31.*****Last week at the Wednesday Lunch Bunch, Dr. Nina Leifeste dined with the group. She recently returned from vacation in Germany and Australia. She was impressed with Hilter’s talent for building great homes. Her daughter Samantha got engaged on that trip to a fellow student at Baylor where she’s studying to become a lawyer. She and her finance met while both were attendants for the baseball team. Also last week Robert Simonton and Judge Joy brought daughter Adley to celebrate the start of school. Robert had been in the hospital with a blood clot that put a kink on their vacation plans. Thankfully after four days in hospital Robert’s fine. The Lunch Bunch dines at Robert’s this week and at Van Choate’s Tuffy’s next week. Here’s hoping everyone will come out. Great food, good fellowship.***** There will be an Old Timers Labor Day Picnic at Pinehurst. I’m not sure our buddy Robert, who caters the annual event will be involved. He has been battling cancer and taking radiation treatments daily. He’s a great guy. We pray for his recovery.

BIRTHDAYS

A few folks we know celebrating birthdays this week. Aug. 22: Happy birthday to Kristen Murdock, Johnny Montagne, Betty Diabo, Mike Johnson, Jason Delano and celebrities comedian James Corden, 39 and chef Glada De Laurantis, 47.*****Aug. 23: Skipper’s little boy, Keble Free, celebrates today along with Pat Gunter, John David Walles, Ryan Moreau. Celebrating also are basketball player Kobe Bryant,  39, singer  Rick Springfield,  68,  actors Barbara Eden,  86 and  Shelley Long,  68. *****Aug. 24: Belin Zuniga, Ben Ezell, Carol Cupe and Debbie Adaway celebrate today. Joining them are  WWE entrepreneur Vince McMahon,  72, comedian Dave Chappelle, 44 and football player Arian Foster, 31. This is also the wedding anniversary of Frank and Theresa Beauchamp. We wish you many more happy years.***** Aug. 25: David Montagne, Dot Hudson, Glynis Gothia, Milton Briggs, Jr., Ron Cowling, Bree Fontenot and Shanley Hubbard all celebrate today. They are joined by Country singer Billy Ray Cyrus,  56, chef Rachel Ray, 49 and actor Sean Connery, 87.***** Aug. 26: Celebrating today are Michele Flowers, Donna Scales, Jerry Mercer, Molly Abshire and Sheryl Guillory.  Celebrities joining them are actors Melissa McCarthy, 47 and Macaulay Culkin, 37 and basketball player James Harden, 28.***** Aug. 27: Peggy Larson, David Green, and Nina Birdwell. Joining them are actors Paul Reubens,  65,  Chandra Wilson, 48 and gospel singer Yolanda Adams, 56.***** Aug. 28: Charlie Broussard, Joe “Buppy” Luna, Meagan Carlin, Debbie Stark, Theresa Wilson, Barbi Childress and Bobbie Brown all celebrate today. Also celebrating are actor Jack Black,  48, country singers Shania Twain, 52 and LeAnn Rimes, 35.

CAJUN STORY OF THE WEEK

Stella Boudreaux was having a passionate affair with Henry Arceneaux wat is an inspector for a pest control company. One afternoon Stella and Henry were carrying on in da bedroom together wen her husband, Clovis, came home unexpected him.

“Quick” Stella said to her lover Henry, “Into da closet,” and pushed him into da closet stark naked.

Clovis him became suspicious dat everyting wasn’t jus right. He search da house until he discovered a man in his bedroom closet.

“Who are you?” he axed.

“Me, I’m an inspector from Thibodeaux’s Bugs-B-Gone,” said Henry da exterminator.

“Wat you doing in dere?” Clovis axe.

“I’m investigating a complaint me, about an infestation of moths,” Henry answered.

“Where are your clothes hanh?” Clovis axe.

Henry him looked down at himself and said, “Well, I’ll be darn, those little bastards.”

C’EST TOUT

Eliminating Straight Party Voting in 2020

Some voters are under the impression that straight party voting is no longer allowed. Well, that is not the case. The straight-ticket option will no longer be available beginning in 2020 under a bill signed by Gov. Greg Abbott in 2017.  Checking one box to vote for every candidate in one party is not available in most states. It accounted for nearly 64 percent of total votes cast in Texas’ ten largest counties in 2016 General Election. Opponents say the legislation will disproportionately impact minority voters. A federal judge found as much last year in Michigan, blocking a similar law from going into effect. In Harris County 35.3% of Democrats voted straight party, Republicans 30%. In Dallas County 41.3% to 23.5%, Bexar County 32.6% to 23%, Tarrant County 36.2% to 28.3%, Travis County 35.5% to 15.9%. With the new law Republicans are hoping to disadvantage Democrats. My findings over the last few years the advantage has been for Republicans who started a straight party campaign in Orange County. I believe statewide, the new law will affect the democratic vote. What it will end for both parties is the election of real squirrels down ballot. Voting for an entire straight party won’t elect the best candidates, often some real unfits are riding the coattails of the candidate at the top of the ballot. Personally, I believe if a voter went down the ballot picking the best candidate regardless of party affiliation, government would be better served. I believe the bigger problem is non-voter participation. Orange County has 52,000 registered voters yet four years ago, we elected a county judge with a total of 6,000 votes. This year, 8,000 votes were cast in the county judge’s race. That means over 40,000 didn’t vote. Of that number, the large majority of eligible voters not voting are mostly independents and democrats. I still believe democrats are the majority in Orange, unlike Jefferson County voters are not going to the polls. I believe we may see that start to change. Straight Party voting has prevented Democrats from running for office. It also caused good Democratic officials to change their party affiliation, not because they necessarily believe in national republican policy but rather a way to assure their election because of the straight party vote. I’ll bet that will change when good democratic candidates run and straight party is gone from Orange County. We may even see office holders return to their democratic roots.*****My time is up. Thanks for yours. Please read us cover to cover and don’t forget to check out Capt. Dickie, Capt. Chuck and Kaz. Take care and God bless.