As noted below, Socratic Gadfly has tossed in his tuppence-worth regarding the current state of the Green Party of Texas, with updates following the revelation that GPTX had four (4) candidates filing to run as Greens in 2018.
I still haven't resolved my feelings about the filings or dearth thereof, but I'm leaning toward PDiddie's diagnosis that GPTX is waxing irrelevant. This situation is not irreparable, but fixing it does require putting the right folks in charge in the big metro county parties, with enough time to formulate strategies and coordinate implementations. That's a tall order, since we have a history of electing co-chairs based on whoever is willing to serve a two-year term.
In less than two decades, we have witnessed county parties go dormant for years at a time, only to be revived with fresh blood, and then going back into hibernation. The Occupy movements of 2011-12 were a terrific source of personpower, energy, and inspiration; even after Occupy was effectively crushed, GPTX kept going on the momentum it generated.
As an echo to this item that I posted two weeks ago, I can report with something resembling hope that members of the Harris County Green Party gathered for an unofficial strategy meeting Saturday (which I missed) that focused more on envisioning the Party's future than on its current strife. Another such meeting is scheduled for 6 January 2018; I will provide more details when I have them. I hope that the Epiphany holiday will produce some epiphanies among local Greens, as well as some robust ideas for the 2018 ballot access petition drive.
Meanwhile, I will keep reminding myself that this December malaise that I am yet again suffering results more from anxiety than depression. Holiday shopping is my least favorite activity that does not (by design, at least) involve physical pain, and "Are you ready for the Holidays?" is probably my least favorite question. Kayleen and I did just a little light shopping Saturday afternoon ("light" as opposed to heavy shopping, not shopping for lights) because we're buying only for the children in our lives, and after only a few hours I needed a few fingers of whisky neat. Having read the first three books and watched the first three seasons of the Outlander series, I am now convinced that uisge, like cannabis, is medicine.
With this week's Texas Progressive Alliance blog post and news roundup, it appears that the War on Christmas is on again...and Christmas is losing. Or perhaps it's just evangelical Christians, burned by Roy Moore and Donald Trump, who are the losers. Wait...no, it's Christmas.
In that vein, Zachery Taylor blogs that evangelical belief in the Apocalypse is influencing domestic and foreign policy. We all lose if our leaders want to bring on Armageddon.
In lighter political reading, Off the Kuff looks at the statewide and Harris County Democratic primary filings, and SocraticGadfly takes a look at the candidate filings and the backstory for the Texas Green Party.
Doug Jones' victory over Roy Moore was made possible by the surge of African American voters in Alabama, a trend Democrats in Texas and across the country would be wise to duplicate, blogs PDiddie at Brains and Eggs.
After a shocking Democratic victory in Alabama, Texas Leftist is also left to wonder if something similar could happen for the Lone Star State. What lessons, if any, can be learned by the Jones campaign, and could they apply to Texas? Here's Part 1 of that question, with some surprising observations.
DBC Green Blog also had some thoughts about the Alabama special election.
Dos Centavos noticed that Democrats nationally appeared to be folding like a cheap card table on supporting DREAMers, a critical miscalculation if the party wants Latin@ turnout to surge in 2018.
Rick Hasen's Election Law Blog reports that the private plaintiffs—but not the US DOJ—in the voter ID lawsuit before the 5th Circuit asked those justices to immediately lift their stay of the lower court order blocking the (revised) law's implementation.
Texas Vox covered one of the many conferences talking about the future of the Lone Star State post-Harvey. Planet Texas 2050 (part of UT's Environmental Science Institute's "Hot Science, Cool Talks" series) focused on the environmental stress associated with climate change, a rapidly growing state population, and the effects on our health, economy...and even the supply of barbecue.
It's Big Spring versus Big Oil as the frackers go after the scarcest of resources in West Texas (their water), and Christopher Collins of the Texas Observer is at ringside.
And in his every-day posting of goofy polling news, Ted at jobsanger says that 59% of Americans think Santa Claus is a Democrat. (Not sure what this says about a fictitious old white man with a long white beard, or Americans polled, or even Democrats. Maybe it's all just a joke.)
Elsewhere in Deep In the Hearta...
In his aggregation of criminal justice news, Scott Henson at Grits for Breakfast mentions the lack of oversight of "forensic hypnosis," updates to the appalling report that a TDCJ teacher was raped by an inmate due to chronic understaffing, life sentences without plea bargaining, executing people who didn't actually commit murder (the law of parties doctrine), and more.
Better Texas Blog reminds you that if you were affected by Hurricane Harvey, your deadline to enroll in an Obamacare insurance plan is December 31.
Nonsequiteuse warns of Republican dirty tricks in HD-134, while Houston Justice profiled Richard Bonton, the primary challenger to longtime 5th Ward state representative Harold Dutton. In SD-10 (Fort Worth area), PoliTex hears the war of words flaring up between the Republican incumbent Konni Burton, the Wendy Davis-endorsed Democratic conservative challenger Beverly Powell, and the progressive Democrat, Allison Campolo.
The Austin American Statesman has news of the Texas GOP filing suit to remove disgraced Cong. Blake Farenthold from the March primary ballot.
A seminar at the Day for Night festival in Houston on art and activism pulled no punches, as Texas Monthly's Michael Hardy listened to Chelsea Manning and Pussy Riot's Nadya Tolokonnikova talk Trump, Putin, and the Resistance. More on two of Day for Night's lesser-known musical acts from CultureMap Houston. Meanwhile, the San Antonio Current gives you the heavy metal Christmas playlist you've been waiting for.
Houstonia spotlighted a northeast Houston institution, Current Cuts, celebrating their 30th anniversary over the weekend.
And Harry Hamid wrote about Liminal House.
Blogging Sporadically since 2014
Here you will find political campaign-related entries, as well as some about my literature, Houston underground arts, peace & justice, urban cycling, soccer, alt-religion, and other topics.