If you want an idea of where this FBI investigation is headed (think Inland Port and the time-honored South Dallas shakedown) and how it has put the Morning News in an uncomfortable position, read Schutze. When he misses, he can miss badly. When he connects, though, it’s really something to watch.
While Price does have enemies–white and black–who would not hesitate to smear his name, a careful examination of his record reveals evidence of behavior that runs the gamut from mere bad judgment to outright unethical and even illegal acts, including blatant conflicts of interest, influence peddling, kickback demands, sexual harassment of subordinates, even sexual assault. When the facts are sifted from the rumors, the picture that emerges is that of a gifted, charismatic leader whose desire for wealth and personal power led him to squander his potential and betray those who trusted him.
That’s what someone named Laura Miller wrote in the March 1991 issue of D Magazine about one Dallas County Commissioner John Wiley Price. None of what she reports is necessarily related to his current troubles. But it is astonishing.
You’ll want to read the whole thing.
We’re posting the story to our site today for the first time, because of popular demand (some of you wonderful FrontBurnervians asked for it). The issue in which it appeared was one of a few that was never uploaded to our online archive. The reason? Well, it seems that we just couldn’t find a copy of it anywhere in our office. Thankfully the text was available through another source, as Miller’s article was featured in our 30 Greatest Stories book, published in 2004.
While some wring their hands over Maurine Dickey’s visceral reaction to the current travails of her fellow county commissioner John Wiley Price, few seem bothered about a call by Price’s aide for a boycott of the Dickey family barbecue eateries he’s dubbed “D.E.A.D.”–short for, Don’t Eat at Dickey’s. One exception is blogger Tom McGregor, who’s likened the name to a death threat. While it may not be exactly that, it is a thuggish tack. And maybe that’s why few are surprised and reacting.
Meantime, the D.E.A.D. campaign doesn’t seem to be affecting sales at the Dallas-based family-run chain. Asked if he’s noticed the boycott, company chairman Roland Dickey Sr., who’s married to Maurine, replied, “No. Zero. No impact from it. It’s a free country, though. They can do anything they want,” Dickey said in a call from Savannah, Ga., where he’ll open the company’s 152nd store tomorrow. “I only met John Wiley Price once, and he seemed like a nice guy. Turns out both our mothers started out as maids, or housekeepers. But, him and my wife are from different political parties, and they’re always taking shots at each other.”
Careful readers will recognize the name Mike Mooney. He has written a couple pieces for us over the years, the most recent being this fine profile of Ron Washington. I’m pleased to announce that Mike will join us as a staff writer in the coming weeks, the exact date being somewhat of mystery on account of Mike is moving his life from Florida back to Dallas, where he graduated from UNT’s Mayborn School of Journalism. (Hey, Mike, what’s the latest ETA, holmes? Chop, chop.) To get you all lathered up and super excited for Mike’s arrival, here’s a story he has in the current GQ. It’s about the 16-year-old phenom basketball player in Permian Odessa who turned out not to be 16. Highly recommended. (Reading the piece, not lying about your age so you can dunk on high-schoolers.)
During my hike from the Parking Garage of Doom this morning, I was making a grocery list on my phone and happened to scroll down through some old notes. I found one from April 16 that I didn’t recognize, and it reads: “Coffee prince. You’re beautiful.” I don’t remember writing it, but I did check Twitter and learned that I was definitely at a Starbucks. But that brings me to my next point, which is that I have never once called a person of the male variety beautiful. Anyway, I now feel like I’ve been dropped into some bizarro alternate universe where I have lost my knight in gleaming espresso beans and must embark on an epic quest to find him again.
So that’s what I’ll be doing tonight, among other things. You, on the other hand, have no such restrictions. Especially if you are a film nut/purist. As you may know, shooting and viewing in 35 mm is basically the holy grail. Very few filmmakers even shoot in 35 mm anymore because it’s so darn expensive, and digital equipment can mimic the look for a fraction of the processing costs. But since the Texas Theatre is often feeling contrary (though I’m sure they’ve all read No. 54 in the Evil Overlord Handbook), they’ve gone and gotten themselves a 35 mm projector. Head to Oak Cliff tonight, where the theater crew will be testing out their new toy by screening rare clips and giving you free drinks hosting a “cocktail ballot” for people to vote on what films they’d like to see. Drinks are not free, but they are cheap. Happy hour specials all night.
Elsewhere in Oak Cliff, Oil and Cotton presents the latest installment of Anemic Cinema, an arts-centric film series. It’s BYOB and food, ostensibly for sharing, but I’m pretty selfish about my six packs. They’ll screen visual artist Matthew Barney’s Drawing Restraint 9, a fantastical narrative project that defies any sort of succinct written explanation. Other options for BYO tonight include a visit to the guy with the enormously recognizable nose at Shakespeare Dallas. Lance Lusk of FrontRow deems their production of Cyrano de Bergerac a major Go See It. Listen to the expert.
Remember Bina Palnitkar Patel from last year? One of the finalists in the 10 Most Beautiful Women in Dallas 2010 contest? Remember her love for New Kids on the Block? Her dreams have come true, as she’s met the band. Says Bina, “My friend told them I was voted 10MB and that I mentioned NKOTB in my blurb. He didn’t believe her so she pulled it up.”Â See what the 10 Most Beautiful Women in Dallas competition can do for the beautiful women in your life? Start nominating. Deadline is tomorrow.
Fair Park Fourth (July 4) Â The swan boats lure us in every time. But there are other attractions, like music from the Grammy-nominated Stefani Little Band and a “dancing water” show choreographed to songs like “Stars and Stripes Forever.” And, yes, massive amounts of fireworks going up at 9:30 pm. The organizers recommend staking out a nice place inside the Cotton Bowl for optimal viewing, but families with young children take heed: no strollers allowed.
Kaboom Town (July 3) Â At least 50,000 people are expected to show up for this free fireworks mega-display – and that’s just counting the people who make it into the park. Three different bands and the Cavanaugh Flight Museum Warbird Flyover are the entertainment prior to the 30-minute pyrotechnics. Then hang around for an after-party featuring Emerald City. But should you eschew the great outdoors and set up shop at say, a neighboring pub, the show is so huge that you can basically see it from outer space.
Star Spangled Spectacular (July 4) Â We like this one because it’s all indoors – even the fireworks. Seriously. The Dallas Wind Symphony’s Star Spangled Spectacular show will also feature patriotic tunes, ice cream and hot dogs, and an 11-foot tall Uncle Sam. And if you can’t make it to this afternoon performance, the wind symphony will be doing the “Oh, Say Can You See” honors at both Kaboom Town in Addison and Fair Park Fourth.
Willie Nelson’s Fourth of July Picnic (July 4) We’d be a lot more concerned about any sort of impending apocalypse if Willie Nelson decided not to host his annual to-do. Duh. That’s never gonna happen (we hope). This country mega-concert/Independence Day celebration marks the final date on Nelson’s national Country Throwdown tour, and performers will include the impressively hairy Jamey Johnson, Randy Houser, Jack Ingram, Paula Nelson, Ray Price, David Allan Coe, and, of course, the man himself. There’s a ticket limit thanks to the change in venue (it’s now at Billy Bob’s), but if it’s not sold out, you can grab tickets at the gate for $35.
For more fireworks, parties, and community celebrations, follow the sparkler – er, the jump. Check back for updates.
Would you believe San Antonio is #1? Or that Dallas ranks #12 out of 15? And that neither New York nor California, where the battles over gay marriage have raged the most, has any cities on the list?
Professor Richard Florida compiled it for The Atlantic. Jump for the list.
Price’s Lawyer Denies Amount of Money Found in Safe. You know what’s really awkward? When you do something at work then you realize seconds after you do it that it was a huge mistake. So then you try to cover it up. But you’ve gone on record; you’ve already been quoted on TV and in blogs. It seems impossible to backtrack. But Price’s lawyer is sticking to his guns and saying that he can’t confirm the amount of money that was found. But if there was money found, don’t worry! It can all be accounted for.
Airline Pilot Apologizes, Returns to Work. You remember the Southwest Airlines pilot who went on a rant about the lacking of attractiveness of stewardesses, right? Well, he’s back at work. What do you think that first day back was like? Were his co-pilots like, “Hey, man, that was some funny stuff you said.” Were stewardesses like, “Ha, remember that time you called me a granny? Good times.” Yeah. I bet that was a rough day.
Moms Fight Apartment Development for Homeless. The parents of kids at First Presbyterian Church day care don’t like the idea of a former homeless apartment complex going in next door. Their concerns are about residents’ windows overlooking a park and putting in an establishment that requires background checks next to a school. But the thing I found most interesting was this quote from Mayor Pro Tem Pauline Medrano: “We have a goal of ending chronic homelessness by 2014. This is part of that goal.” Medrano realizes that’s less than three years away, right? Not saying that it can’t be done. But. Isn’t that something that a lot of people have been trying to end for a very long time? Seems a bit ambitious.