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Monday, November 5, 2007

Texas Leads The Way

I spent the first third of my life in Texas, mostly within cat flinging distance of Dallas. I was not politically sophisticated, but I learned the rules early. The Democratic party has been replaced by The Republicans. Same guys actually, just the labels changed when the Democrats decided segregation was unacceptable. The D's are making a comeback in the cities, but that only goes so far in State politics.

The classic career politico Good Old Boy land commissioner is looking to unload a bit of West Texas Big Bend country that is owned by the Texas State Schools. Like most public lands it is undeveloped, and the US Park Service wants to add it to the bordering Big Bend National Park. The commissioner won't sell it to them because, he says, the park service won't allow loaded handguns in the parks. Coincidentally the Bubba with the high bid ($70 an acre) on the property operates a waste disposal company. West Texas is well within cartage distance of San Antonio, Austin, El Paso and even, using rail, Dallas Fort Worth and Houston. Can I be the only guy that smells a rat, but that's Southern politics.

With the rush to privatize we can expect a lot of this sort of sweetheart deal, not just in the states, but for federal lands.

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