What do vets say about Trump or McCain? There is more than one opinion.

Anyone who has ever read the newspaper or watched television should know Donald Trump — despite his ability to make millions — is generally a buffoon who loves hearing himself speak.

The attack on Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., in which Trump questions the long-time senator’s heroism, seems to do nothing insofar as advancing the race for the Republican nomination for president. With the exception of raising the geographically-inspired debate on immigration, one must wonder what in the hell does McCain have to do with this presidential race?

This is not to say genuine questions might be raised in the discussion of McCain and his past. During the period of time, as well as after, in which McCain was imprisoned in Vietnam he broke the military’s Code of Conduct. That Code, introduced by President Eisenhower in 1955, acts as a guide of obligations and responsibilities of U.S. service members who are in “harm’s way:”

U.S. Military Code of Conduct

I

I am an American, fighting in the forces which guard my country and our way of life. I am prepared to give my life in their defense.

II
I will never surrender of my own free will. If in command, I will never surrender the members of my command while they still have the means to resist.

III
If I am captured I will continue to resist by all means available. I will make every effort to escape and aid others to escape. I will accept neither parole nor special favors from the enemy.

IV
If I become a prisoner of war, I will keep faith with my fellow prisoners. I will give no information or take part in any action which might be harmful to my comrades. If I am senior, I will take command. If not, I will obey the lawful orders of those appointed over me and will back them up in every way.

V
When questioned, should I become a prisoner of war, I am required to give name, rank, service number and date of birth. I will evade answering further questions to the utmost of my ability. I will make no oral or written statements disloyal to my country and its allies or harmful to their cause.

VI
I will never forget that I am an American, fighting for freedom, responsible for my actions, and dedicated to the principles which made my country free. I will trust in my God and in the United States of America.

Those tenets are not military law but rather a code of ethics that would no doubt cause fellow troops to cast aspersions if an American service member strays too far from these six guidelines.

During the five and a half years McCain was a prisoner of war he would break this code due to reasons including physical torture. Though names were redacted, this paper McCain wrote during study at the National War College in Washington, D.C. in 1974 after repatriation. Some of the reasons for straying from the Code as well as praise for the same are spelled out in his paper.

Some World War II veterans held Vietnam vets in contempt. The reasons run from breaches of the Code of Conduct to one-year tours. Some of those resentments are still harbored by those surviving WWII vets. Likewise Vietnam vets sometime resent the government that sent them to war and seemingly forgot about them afterwards.

Perhaps “some” is not a grammatically-correct or an inaccurate measure of participants. But no doubt, the word serves as a true measure when it comes to veterans, of any era, and what feelings they may harbor.

Last week I wrote a local TV news reporter and complained about a story she did. The local reaction piece was on what veterans felt about arming recruiters and other “soft” military facilities in the wake of the Chattanooga shootings that resulted in four dead Marines and a dead Navy logistics specialist. The two veterans in the news piece were a retired sergeant major and retired captain who just happened to meet each morning for coffee. Being retired from the military and from  Southeast Texas, it was no big surprise to hear they believed the soft targets required hardening — with guns.

My complaint was there were two lifers who have met for years each morning for coffee. Does it seem that some veterans might disagree? Or the same for some civilians?

Perhaps the one redeeming quality of Trump and his McCain bashing is to show the American public that military veterans are not homogeneous. Most should already have that figured out, but not in this old world will the logical become the norm.

Marines killed in some type of attack in Tennessee. WTF?

UPDATE: As is usually the case, the first reports of incidents such at these are wrong. The wrong information I refer to here is that the shooter was an employee of the Chattanooga public works department. That was information I gathered from the Chattanooga Times Free Press which later correctly stated the suspect’s father was the soil scientist for the city. On the Aurora theater shooting, defendant James Holmes was found guilty of 24 counts of first-degree murder — two for each victim slain — as well as 134 counts of first-degree attempted murder, six counts of attempted second-degree murder and one count of explosives possession, according to The Denver Post.

————————————————

Another day, another handful of people dead from gunfire.

This time the locations are relatively “soft” military locations in Chattanooga, Tenn. First was a military recruiting center. Minutes later a Naval and Marine Corps Reserve Center was attacked. Four Marines were killed at the reserve center. The shooter was also killed.

That area’s U.S. Attorney, Bill Killian, called the shooting “domestic terrorism” although he reportedly ran back on the statement saying the investigation would determine the type of attack.

A U.S. official says the gunman in the shootings in Tennessee has been identified as 24-year-old Muhammad Youssef Abdulazeez, according to The Chattanooga Times Free Press earlier reporter the alleged gunman was a soil engineer with the city’s public works department.

Well, that is how it goes with such a situation. It might be domestic terrorism, it could be a “lone wolf” or it could be ISIL or other such terror attacks.

I was set to get down on the general proliferation of guns and how it turns up multiple bodies each day, one after another. Then something like this happens. We don’t know the motive. At this stage we don’t know about the victims. Such terror might make a good statement for the ease of gun use. Then the news comes also today that a verdict has been reached in the trial of alleged Aurora, Colo., theater shootings in which 12 people were killed and 70 wounded. James E. Holmes is awaiting the verdict as we speak.

Perhaps the NRA wants everyone armed. Perhaps they can use their billions to make it a law everyone is armed. It seems that is what the NRA wants. But it can turn on them, the NRA. It may take a 9/11 with guns. Or a Mumbai-type attack by the wannabes or couldabees or even the killer bees. I don’t want that to happen but … WTF is wrong with life?

Small news source keeps feds feet to the fire

The arrest of a terror suspect on Monday was not a large surprise to me, thanks to reporting of a small northwestern Massachusetts news site.

My longtime friend, Sally, e-mailed me a story from iberkshires.com last week that had reported on the search of a house in Adams, Mass. The town is near the state line with Vermont. The original reporting told of FBI agents along with other officers retrieving various items from a  house on July 4. The news site kept getting stonewalled by federal authorities until today when they announced charges against an ISIS, or ISIL, sympathizer.

Alexander Ciccolo, aka Ali Al Amriki, 23, was arrested on charges of a felon in possession of firearms. Ciccolo, whose father is a 27-year veteran of the Boston Police Department, was caught taking delivery of two Glock handguns, a Colt AR-15 and a SG-550. Both the Colt and SG, the latter manufactured by Swiss Arms, are .223-caliber rifles. Both are characterized as assault weapons although some gun-rights supporters often dispute such a description of similar weapons. Literature from a sister company, Sig Sauer, uses the assault rifle moniker for the SG-550. Found at Ciccolo’s residence as well was material that included a pressure cooker, which was of the sort used in the Boston terror bombings. The suspect was convicted of a DUI charge in February.

Ciccolo had been on the feds’ radar since last fall after what the FBI called an “anonymous” acquaintance indicated the suspect was “obsessed” with Islam. That source is reportedly Ciccolo’s father, the Boston police captain, according to the Associated Press.

A hat tip to iberkshires.com for their dogged reporting on this story. I kept waiting to hear about an arrest and, lo and behold!

The Reb flag is down. We’re back to Step 1 with a mass murder.

The Confederate Battle Flag was taken from its pole today on the grounds of the South Carolina capitol in Columbia, S.C. It should have left a long time ago. It is likely it should have not been there at all. I think that flag has no real use except in museums, history books and movies about the Civil War. To me the battle flag is akin to the Jolly Roger flag that once indicated piracy on ships in the 18th century.

Those symbols might have been fun for us redneck kids of the mid 20th century in East Texas — a place that has always been more Old South than cowboy country. But the CSA battle flag symbolizes an open-ended hostility toward the United States and the black folks whose lives were captured in Africa and sold to American folks who believed they needed slaves to make them rich or richer.

As someone who has given more than 10 years to the United States military and government, I have become appalled with those who have shallow dreams of another Texas secession. I speak of people like our former Gov. Good Hair. Yes, I know Rick Perry was an Air Force pilot who flew C-130s. Good for him. While I appreciate his service, it doesn’t necessarily mean he is a patriot or particularly blessed with useful gray matter. For heaven’s sake, he thought Texas had the right to secede. It doesn’t.

My feelings on the battle flag has evolved over the years. It wasn’t the flag of the confederacy.

Although I think removing the flag in South Carolina is a positive development it should make us think more about our other symbols. I see today that just after the battle flag was removed in South Carolina, the FBI director admitted that a screw up in the background checks for weapons allowed the alleged killer of nine in S.C. to buy a gun. This shooting that killed so many in the Carolina church led to the outrage over the Confederate flag.

And so, here we are back at the beginning. Where nine people died needlessly. I mean, are we just ignoring the fact that nine people were murdered in a church, hoping the problem will go away?

Will it end in Houston or Dallas or any other Texas city when the state of Texas allows licensed handgun owners to openly carry their pistols next year? Are will this be the Old West once more, with people putting notches on their belts? Jeez, it is time for our people in the US of A to WTFU (Wake The F*** Up!)

 

Siri, I think I love you! No, but here is a Web page on love

Writer’s steal. That is the sad truth, but it is the truth. If that was not the case you wouldn’t hear all those bad leads — ledes to the newspaper geeks.

The Houston Chronicle had a story yesterday that waxed eloquently on how Apple’s Virtual librarian can get a bit snarky. Ask a stupid, get a stupid answer.

Yesterday, I asked her, it, — damn it, it’s not a “she” it’s a person, it’s  a recording, it’s two, smack, two, smack — something or the other. I know that talking, rather, carrying on conversations with your virtual assistant sort of shows how bad my personal life has become. What the hay. Getting on with my story, as I am in years, I told Siri “Never mind.” She retorted: “Yes it does.”

Apple’s Siri is quite the phenomenon. Stories abound here and there about ridiculous or funny things to say to Siri. So here are a few I have decided to ask Siri while I am waiting for dinner.

1. On Cosby: “It’s nice of you to ask but it really doesn’t matter what I think.”

2. On singing like the Bangles: “You wouldn’t like it.”

3. Does she eat meat? “I wouldn’t speak that way to you.”

4. Does she like short questions: “I really have no opinion.”

5. How far it is from where we are sitting to Pluto. “Here is information on Pluto.”

“Siri not available.” A sign on my computer screen informs me.

WTF? Did she have to take a break. Were my questions of those of others giving her a breakdown. Does Siri pee? Does she have sex? Ewww. Even for someone almost 60 that kind of question weirds me out.

One wonders what it would take to truly give Siri a mental break? Well, I’m not going to try. Siri is like a woman who is from a foreign country working in the U.S. as a reference librarian. She has some hits and misses. She stumbles on language on occasion. But she’s mine. All mine!

And the millions of others. That Siri is quite a dame!

Zydeco and alligator attacks: July 4 in Cajun Texas

To paraphrase Bob Seger’s ode to youth and aging, “Night Moves,” “I woke this morning to the sound of thunder, my summer sheet I climbed back under, started humming a song from nineteen eighty-two, ain’t it funny how the time moves, when you don’t have a clock with Snooze, ain’t it funny how the time moves. With waking closing in.

Yet here it is the Fourth of July in Southeast Texas. Thunderstorms blowing in from late morning to early evening. All is hot and sticky in between.

I probably could have gone online to find which restaurants were open and which weren’t, same goes with grocery stories. But many’s the time you can count on Jason’s Deli. I am talking the original one built in the Gateway shopping center. The center’s parking lot, facing Eleventh Street was the scene of a Beaumont teen “hanging out” place in the 70s, of the kind that brings up Seger’s Night Move album. At least, that was the time period I remember hanging out there. Time really doesn’t matter because I was from up in the Pineywoods where they had to pipe light in.

Gateway went the way of many small city shopping centers when the local mall was opened in 1974. Now the mall is a beginning point for what is called a “shopping district.” Big boxes and Best Buys up the wazoo.-

The area around Gateway, kind of mid-city Beaumont, is once again picking up. A large minority population sprung up to the center’s south. A decent amount of medical developed has made a horseshoe of sorts around it. Baptist Hospital of Southeast Texas was across the street from Gateway, where years back a traffic circle sat confusing people coming to and from the big cross-highway College Street. It is technically still U.S. 90, but more so on the western edge of Beaumont where it provides a less traffic-infested route to northeast Houston than Interstate 10, which takes drivers into the original Central Business District in Big-H-Town. One does endure quite a few stoplights and speed limits on Highway 90. It isn’t a bad ride though.

Back in Beaumont, about a quarter-mile to the east of Gateway stands Memorial Hermann Baptist Hospital, the second largest in the city and the predecessor of the old Baptist Hospital.

Amidst the area between downtown and the West End of Beaumont, a few places sprouted up. A new Chick-Fil-A. Probably most welcome and something that likely will enliven the mid-City more is the new H-E-B grocery. The new store, which opened a few weeks ago, replaced a small H-E-B a few blocks down on South Eleventh and another small store in northern Beaumont. It is by no means the biggest type of H-E-B, as is in the West End Shopping District, but is about half that largest size. Still, it has practically all the area’s other largest stores have. Today, which is Independence Day, it had even more.

Upon entering the parking lot I could hear the sounds of a Zydeco band blasting away. The band was under a canopy with benches. Whole dinners and frozen drinks were for sale out there as well. I caught a few minutes of music before leaving:

YouTube Preview Image

That is Southeast Texas for you, otherwise known as “Cajun Texas.” If one didn’t need more of a reminder of where they are, the news broke last night that the first man to be killed by an alligator in Texas for more than 200 years took place early Friday morning. It happened about 20 miles away  in Adams Bayou in Orange County, to the east of Beaumont and between Beaumont and Louisiana.

The man reportedly was reminded the “family-friendly” place where he had been drinking had a sign outside expressly telling people an alligator was in the bayou and to stay out of the water. A justice of the peace told the media the man said “F*** the alligator,” then jumped in the water. The man’s arm was bitten off and he had deep wounds in the torso that probably killed the man rather quickly. It would kind of remind me of the old Jerry Reed song “Amos Moses,” however it was truly tragic despite how ill-advised the man’s last acts were.

That’s the way things are in Cajun Texas. I can’t say much else except I wish everyone a Happy Independence Day.

Oregon gets high as the 4th of July!

Planning on a trip to Oregon over the Fourth of July weekend? Then, you might just have a high, old time! And that is speaking literally, if not figuratively.

Oregon began the outcome of Measure 91 today, a law allowing recreational marijuana with what casual stoners might even say is relatively generous. It allows use of weed at home, you can grow four plants, possess eight ounces of pot at home and an ounce in public. There are some caveats, of course.

You can’t fire one up in public. You can’t sell it. You can give it away. You can’t drive under the influence. And a bunch of other weird little regulations that were given by lawmakers to special interest groups.

This bud's for you, Oregon. Creative Commons.

This bud’s for you, Oregon. Creative Commons.

Oregon becomes the fourth state to allow recreational pot. The other states are Washington, Colorado, Alaska. The District of Columbia also allows it. Marijuana is allowed with a prescription in some of the other states. Oregon has also had a medicinal marijuana. It is permissible for someone with a medicinal marijuana card to give away buds or seeds.

Oh and how about eating pot?

Oregon state officials are working out the details for shops that will allow edibles next year. But this new law let Oregonians possess a pound of “processed edibles.” These are items such as candies or cookies. A total of 72 ounces of marijuana-spiked drinks. Yeah! This bud is definitely for you.

When the “strength” of marijuana is discussed these days in the media — often this is talked about in the context of edibles —  there is a big emphasis that is mostly emphasized by the pot haters about how potent is weed these days.

The way this potency is laid out by the talking heads — oh wow man, I remember them, ‘you might find yourself living in a shotgun shack’ — is that this “new” marijuana is like the “New Coke.” Now I can’t argue with that because … well just because. But the “experts” I know, like Turkey Neck Jackson, thinks that is all a lot of baloney.

“Yeh main, I took this big chubabaloney an’ put in fire lil bit bobbyq sauz and coooook! Yes sir. Man that ol roll just tuck my ol’ brain ‘way,” Neck, he goes by Neck, said.

Actually, I think he might’ve been a little bit stoned, ya think? He was talking about barbecuing a whole chub, or roll, of bologna. I mean, that’s not odd here in East Texas, but you don’t want to just throw it on an open fire with no grill.

But I just don’t know about those people who are getting higher than they were in the old days. And that’s all I got to say about that.

Something likewise positive coming from this law are rules that will help guide a budding (sorry) industrial hemp industry.

A law passed several years ago allowed growing hemp in Oregon but the hemp industry did not take off because of the existing federal laws against it. An agency no less than the Kentucky Department of Agriculture points out that it is illegal to grow industrial hemp without a DEA license. Oregon’s ag department is taking application for hemp growing. The requirements limit the active ingredient of marijuana, THC, at 0.03 percent. That is an amount that probably wouldn’t give Bambi a buzz.

I can’t say this for sure. But I hear people say deer like to eat pot. Mice do too. Like I say, I’ve never been a deer or a mouse, so this is just speculation.

 

 

The Donald “running away” in New Hampshire

Hello friends. I honestly intended to write something today. But I encountered computer foolishness. What’s going on? Let’s see. Donald Trump was fired by NBC. He is second to Jeb Bush in a CNN/WMUR New Hampshire Primary Poll. Trump was just in a sound byte trumpeting the poll results where he is shown with 11 percent of voters’ support with Bush at 16 percent.

The Donald a.k.a. The Trum-pet-teer with his Secretary of State or ambassador to North Korea, the Hon. Dennis Rodman. OpenSports.com photo/Creative Commons

The Donald a.k.a. The Trum-pet-teer with his Secretary of State or ambassador to North Korea, the Hon. Dennis Rodman. OpenSports.com photo/Creative Commons

But hold on. Hold on there Nellie! There are 19 pages in these poll results.

First question: How favorable is Jeb Bush? 50 percent. Unfavorable 33 percent. Trump, 38 percent, unfavorable 48 percent. Ah ha!

Question No. 21: If the Republican Primary was held today (June 25, 2015) who would the voters prefer: This is the question to which the Trump-pet-eer referred. To continue, Rand Paul, 9 percent; Scott Walker, 8 percent; Marco Rubio and Carly Fiorina tied with, 6 percent; Ben Carson and Chris Christie tied at sixth place at 5 percent. Who has the highest ranking? None of them. Don’t know or unsure, says the polled, 21 percent.

So that is how the 14, 15, who knows how many are running for the Republican side? Holy smokels! And this how the GOP candidates fare in one poll for an election 8 months away! I suppose it all has to do with full employment for political types, both Donkeys and Elephants.

Need I say anymore today? I don’t think so. No sir. I don’t. Nope. Not. I don’t think I do. Need to, that is.

 

SCOTUS dreams

The Week That Changed The World.” That was a headline I saw a couple of times today. That might be a bit of exaggeration when you think globally. Although if you are considering change perhaps semi-globally then maybe you are on the right track.

SCOTUS, the acronym used for the U.S. Supreme Court, made the bulk of that news. The Court yesterday upheld key provisions to the Affordable Care Act, a.k.a.,”Obamacare,” though Justice Antonin Scalia writing the minority dissent stated: “We should start calling this law SCOTUScare.” The majority for the 6-3 opinion was written Chief Justice John Roberts, who was appointed by President George W. Bush.

This morning perhaps an equally if not more surprising decision came down from on high which ruled that same-sex marriage is legal in all 50 states.

Meanwhile, President Obama became the nation’s old-time “Holy Rolling preacher in chief.” He even tenuously led mourners for victims in the Charleston, S.C., shootings last week, in the our national spiritual-emeritus “Amazing Grace.” It was a coming together in U.S. civil rights with the specter of perhaps more than 150 years of disunity disappearing with discussions of ridding states of the former Confederate States of America battle flags flying outside statehouses.

And one more story on the news during the past three weeks partially wrapping with escaped New York state prisoner Richard Matt being shot and killed in an intense manhunt. NY state troopers and other police remain “in hot pursuit” of convicted cop-killer-escapee David Sweat.

So here we are a few hours later, the cops say they “are on top of him.” Whatever the f*** that means.

But, hey, it is very seldom the cops don’t get their man (or woman.) Perhaps that is because the police spend so much chasing people. Oh well, let’s hope the coppers get their man.

As for all the action that has been making these interesting news days this week maybe when I awake in the morning:

  • Pot will be legal across the U.S.
  • China will declare peace and non aggression and free Chinese food.
  • Democracy will be the law of Russia. Vladimir Putin has decided to tour with WWE.

I will then wake up and say: “Whoo, what a dream!”

 

A new VA hospital in Orange, Texas? Man, give me some of that smoke!

Well, I’m back. Not that I went anywhere. I see I haven’t posted since last week. When I was last here Tropical Storm Bill was causing havoc with its torrents of rain. But alas, I have returned to the keyboard and summer has returned to Southeast Texas with its muggy days and afternoon bouts of here and there thunderstorms.

Having not written in a few days I do realize that many items of importance have gone unmentioned by the proprietor. To that, I must say, missed it. Missed that. Missed that as well!

Something just caught my attention on the local news though.

The story by KFDM Channel 6 right here in Beaumont, Texas, got me to wondering what some of the folks over in Orange County (Texas) have been  smoking?

I mean, the 70s were my heyday and that was supposed to be a time when folks were smoking a lot of different things. I was there, but I don’t remember much of it … being so long ago. With all these places allowing marijuana, like Colorado, I don’t know much what to say. I figured I would never see marijuana legal. Of course, it is only half-assed legal. It’s illegal, according to federal law. But a bunch of different local laws were passed making pot legal for everything to medicinal reasons to recreational. I think all places should just cover their bases and make it all legal. The federal government too!

But in this story on Channel 6 story by Lauren Huet, one wonders if she must have run into a bunch of folks over in Orange, between Beaumont and Louisiana, who are smoking something mighty potent.

The story this evening tells how locals over in Orange including the young county judge seem to think they can get the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs to build an inpatient hospital there. That very idealistic. Very very idealistic.

I tell you why. Not so many years ago the VA went through the “CARES” years. And those years weren’t anything like the Care Bears. The GOP presidential years in the early “Oughts” (2000) could have been called the “Don’t CARES Bears.” Too bad I didn’t think of that back then.

CARES was an acronym for a VA-equivalent of the military Base Closing and Realignment Commission. CARES (Capital Asset Realignment for Enhanced Services) had an “independent” commission of some distinguished individuals such as its chairman Everett Alvarez. “Ev” as he is known, was a Navy fighter-bomber pilot who was shot down over North Vietnam. The Navy commander spent almost nine years in the notorious prison camp sarcastically-known as the “Hanoi Hilton.”

There were a number of VA hospitals targeted by CARES for closure ranging from New York state’s Canadaigua VA facility to the Waco VA Hospital, now named after Waco-born Messman Doris “Dorie” Miller. Miller a black cook was one if not the first U.S. Navy hero of WWII. He was awarded the Navy Cross for his heroics during the Japanese bombing at Pearl Harbor. There has been a large admiration society over the years for Miller who believe he should have been a Medal of Honor recipient. However, his race is generally recognized as having kept him from that award.

When the news broke that the VA planned to close the Waco VA hospital, a cry to action quickly happened. A local committee made up of Waco leaders was formed. The then-Congressman for the area Chet Edwards, D-Waco, was on the rise in the Democratic party. He had been considered as a running mate for President Obama. Edwards position and his fervor to help veterans gave the CARES bunch and the VA quite a fight. Eventually the hospital was made a center for mentally ill vets.

The report tonight on Channel 6 mentioned that the U.S. House member representing Orange, Rep. Brian Babin-R, Woodville, had mentioned his willingness to help with the move to get a VA Hospital in Orange. The fact that the Baptist Hospital-Orange shut its doors as an inpatient center, the ER is still open, appears to present an opportunity for the VA to serve what was is estimated 6,000 veterans in Orange County and others in Southeast Texas.

An inpatient VA hospital in Orange, Texas, is nice as a pipe dream. The Strategic Plan for the VA through 2020 isn’t big, it isn’t even small, on more inpatient facilities. The department is still out to close long-established facilities.

I can understand an idealistic young war veteran elected as Orange County Judge, Brint Carlton, believing he can move heaven, earth and the U.S. Government. Congressman Babin is relatively new as a U.S. House member. However, he has been in politics for many years as a small-town mayor and running unsuccessfully for Congress.

Babin’s name became known in a negative light during his unsuccessful campaign against then U.S. Rep. Jim Turner, D-Crockett. As the National Journal reported during Babin’s election campaign to Congress, his Democratic opponent brought up:

” … Babin’s role in a notorious Texas campaign finance scandal, noting that he received $37,000 in illegal corporate money from his friend, (Orange) businessman Peter Cloeren, when he made his first House bid in 1996. Cloeren claimed the idea came from GOP Rep. Tom DeLay—the former House majority leader—but DeLay denied any involvement. Cloeren eventually pleaded guilty to campaign violations and paid a fine of $200,000, while the Federal Election Commission dismissed his claim that DeLay was responsible.

As for Babin, the FEC gave him a pass, ordering him to pay $30,000 in civil fines. The official who let him off the hook was Lois Lerner, the embattled former IRS official who recently was accused of giving extra scrutiny to tea-party groups.”

So Rep. Babin should know better, if no one else around Orange doesn’t. The odds on Orange being even considered for an outpatient facility — with a fairly large one 25 miles away in Beaumont and a huge inpatient hospital in Houston– seem pretty long-range.

Smoke up! Orange would have better luck getting pot legalized.