Valley Mills, TX – A foot chase through this hilly central Texas community on Hwy6, 25 miles northwest of Waco, left dozens of motorists gawking beside the cars they left parked in the road as a DPS helicopter combed the woods looking for a man wanted on armed robbery and other as yet unspecified charges.
Brad Taylor, a black man, is known as “a rabbit,” according to Officer Randy Threlkeld. He has an extensive history of running from officers when they are ready apprehend him on arrest warrants.
Wanted on multiple charges in McLennan and Bosque Counties, he evaded capture on Tuesday evening in a neighborhood of Valley Mills called “The Hill,” as deputies and K-9 units chased him, then lost the trail. That episode attracted nationwide attention on “America’s Most Wanted.” The neighborhood known as “The Hill” is heavily populated with members of professional baseball player Barry Sadler’s family.
At about 10:30 p.m. Friday night, acting on a tip from a confidential informant, Threlkeld learned Taylor was back in the neighborhood of Misty Lane Trailer Park, and the hounds were back in business as a sleek helicopter ran an expanding search pattern with its eye in the sky spotlight ablaze, criss crossing the wooded areas on both sides of the highway.
When he was brought to bay, clad only in gym shorts, the bottoms of his feet, which were covered by white athletic socks, were bloodied from his chase through the wooded area as ambulance attendants placed him on a stretcher to transport him to emergency care.
Perhaps a hundred residents of the trailer park stood by watching as lawmen questioned their quarry about his intentions as he led them on their chase through the woods.
Knowledgeable ethics experts such as Jim Alfini of South Texas College of Law are watching the Texas Commission on Judicial Conduct closely to see what action will be taken toward District Judge Kaycee Jones of the 411th Court in Polk, Trinity and San Jacinto Counties.
Texting suggested questions for a witness under examination by a prosecutor has already cost Judge Elizabeth Coker her judgeship. The State Bar stopped short of a permanent reprimand for Judge Jones. She will be required to place a notice of her part in the violation of the ex parte rule for judges hearing a cause over the next 10 years only. A grievance committee found cause to enter the reprimand on a finding that Jones relayed Coker’s questions to the prosecutor in a child injury case.
Alfini, et. al., are wondering if the commission should not examine Judge Jones’ fitness to be a judge at all.
Martial law is in force in Thailand following a coup in which the Army’s chief of staff replaced the head of government. Gatherings of five or more people are prohibited.
According to news reports, the cabinet refused to resign when called upon to do so.
China and Vietnam are at odds over territorial waters. Chinese head of government has said he is seeking a peaceful solution to the conflict as the United States and Japan have joined Vietnam in making overtures for increased cooperation between the nations.
Mesquite, NV – Cliven Bundy and his family have ranched on public grazing lands for more than 60 years, a hundred thousand acres the family has owned since 1870. Recently, the Bueau of Land Management has ordered them to pay grazing fees or desist from ranching. The Bundys have refused, and government agents are rounding up their cattle at gunpoint, beseiging the family at their ranch.
A Clark County, Nevada, Commissioner advised those who would come to the aid of the Bundys that they “had better have funeral plans.” He didn’t smile, nor did he stutter, when he said it.
It’s all about an endangered species of turtle, the continued propagation of which might not succeed if cattle are allowed to continue to graze in that area.
Is this a new development?
No way. Ranchers using open range throughout the west have come under increasing pressure over the past forty years, beginning with the passage of certain treaties by the United Nations to protect endangered species.
Activists have found working with the UN a much more tractable and efficient means than trying to deal with the ponderous and laborious congressional processes imposed by the U.S. Constitution.
None of these treaties have been ratified by Congress. They have been put in motion by presidential administrations – very quietly – in conjunction with similar movements in nations throughout the world.
The sign of the turtle, new age symbol for the land mass of North America, is ubiquitous in the international movement to nationalize all lands outside “sustainable” communities and reserve the wilderness as a roadless track meant for animals only.
Here is a succinct statement written by an expert observer:
“In most communities, neither the victims, nor the proponents of sustainable development are aware that their plight is a part of a global agenda. Indeed, most would scoff at the idea. Nevertheless, the transformation of America is well underway, without public debate, or Congressional approval. From watershed, to ecosystem, to village, to city, to multi-county regions, to transboundary biospheres – the U.N. agenda is being systematically implemented – with the help of elected officials, paid for with the taxes of American citizens.” – Henry Lamb, “Why the Government is Grabbing Our Land” –http://www.citizenreviewonline.org/june_2003/why.htm
It appears that the enabling legislation most fortunate for this program of population reduction, control, and isolation is the Clean Water Act. Its provisions make it easy for federal bureaucrats to throw the full weight of the U.S. Government behind their policies, policies which will ultimately be enforced by troopers of the United Nations.
A quick approach to getting an understanding of the ideas behind this movement is to seek definition of the operant terms as defined by such agencies as the Environmental Protection Agency, UNESCO, Departments of Energy and Interior.
New Orleans – At a place called ‘the father of waters,’ people are making a comeback from a place they never left – a city that time forgot, a place filled with ceremonies in dark old men, the sound of marching feet, swooning cries of woodwinds, blasting brass horns, and the ivory tinkle of women’s laughter, playing across the keys of black lacquered pianos, by both day and night.
Carnival time, the fortnight before Shrove Tuesday preceding Ash Wednesday, is alive, well, neat, compleat, and fussed over like never before, as everyone from the cab drivers to the Mayor, the cops on the beat and hoteliers and restaurateurs worry about the weather, the crowds, the clouds, da gumbo, da King Cake, da oystahs, da po-boys – and every other little thing in the world. Nothing new about that…
The cat driving me in from the airport: “Oh, it’s all right, a little slow, but, that’s how it go…
The weather? (cold, rainy)
“Naw, baby, we gonna party, come rain or come shine…Nothing will ever change that. Put on a garbage sack and party out in the rain – It’s the little things…”
Little things like what?
“Oh, you know, man, since that thing happened, that, how you call, Katrina, y’know…things just, I dunno. They got all these new people, okay. They got to have more…”
“More everything. More jails, more cops, more fines and fees, rules and regulations for Mardi Gras, no charcoalers, no ladders, no nothin’, and everwhat all that whodat stuff like that there, don’t y’see…”
And how. We’re talking YAT dialect in the key of Ybanex, creole style with a lilt of lament known so well – nursed, rehearsed, coaxed out the horn in baby steps and little growls.
First, he says, it was the child support. “Then I paid off that little three grand I owed, thought it was gonna be a cool breeze, and next thing you know, FEMA hit me for another 14…”
FEMA? Fourteen what?
“Grand, baby. Grand. Large and in charge, Jim…Started off as a grant for 8 thousand, now it’s interest on top of interest, almost a hundred percent…”
“Receipts and goin’ on about that. Who knows?”
Then, there’s the jails. They need more, and FEMA led the charge, great pre-cast modular block houses built of bolt-together epoxy-hardened fly ash concrete boxes, all reinforced with tool steel, prewired and plumbed, lifted into place by crane, stacked like Lego toys – and a Sheriff’s race as red hot and dirty as any on record, complete with arguments over who gets to make money off the candy bars and powdered soups, microwaved popcorn – and all that jazz.
“Looks like they be buildin’ them just to be putting folks in there…”
In the barber shop of the Monteleone, founded early in the 19th century by the Sicilian nobleman, Antonio Mountain Lion, they speak of the same things while Pat O’Connell works me in, and the stereo plays windy arias, sung in Italian, tarantellas, belted out in Sicilian dialect, and the hotel men talk in numbers and bookings. Rain falling from an iron gray sky rolls off the black slate roofs in sheets.
They laugh about former Governor Edwin Edwards’ bid for U.S. House of Representatives, his wife’s remark about having three eggs left and how she will make him a papa again…
It’s the federal government, they all agree. They sued the Sheriff for more humane conditions for the thugs who get busted every year during Mardi Gras, making things unpleasant for decent people. In the old days, they cuffed them to traffic barriers where they waited all night long to catch chain and go to The House of the Rising Sun.
Every morning during carnival, they were made to clean the streets of all the trash, sometimes nearly ankle deep.
“But it’s much better today,” Pat says. “Back when I was a kid – well, Mardi Gras was terrible, just terrible.”
The Sheriff has tents, now, with benches. The streets are as clean as a pin. You can see the difference. Feel it.
The new regulations?
“They needed them,” he snorts. “People were just ridiculous. Just ridiculous! They roped off the neutral ground, spaces as big as the barber shop, here, brought their barbecue pits, lawn chairs. Ridiculous.” The neutral ground.
Another mystic concept, unknown to the uninitiated, the outsiders, the unaware. Carnival pulses with a thousand unwritten rules, some of them as elaborate as the Old World medieval game of hide and seek called Ringolevio, some of them just common sense, the kind of things your mama taught you about courtesy, manners.
On television, there is a young City Councilman who seems to be everywhere – at every ribbon-cutting, open house, handshaking, and grin and grab fest. He led the junta that demanded the new rules – and got them.
He says something very profound on the visitors’ bureau channel that is piped in to the major hotels:
“There are limits. You can be free,” he explains, his eyes shining, glazed with unshed tears. “But in your freedom, you must observe limits, or there is no such thing as freedom…It’s not the same New Orleans; it’s the New Orleans we always knew it could be.”
The smiling interviewer brushes past the moment. Later, the young politician appears on a local network outlet talk show, speaking of the unpleasant fact of an abnormally high murder rate among young men, men who think their lives are of little value, and as a consequence value the lives of others in equally small proportions.
Once branded as a criminal, he explains, they rarely do anything else for the rest of their short lives.
As the Mystic Krewe of Druids rolls down Canal, a silver-haired daddy on a green and yellow Harley sweeps by in formation with the rest of the Shriners; he backhands a string of beads, slinging them into the face of a swish young queen who is wearing hoop earrings and elaborate makeup. His eyes water from the stinging blow.