Morning News Says Mike Rawlings Should Run Again Because Mary Suhm

The DMN ran an editorial over the weekend that said Mike Rawlings should run for another term. My take: Sure, why not? He can’t build a coalition on the council, but he is onboard with school reform. I’m for the latter more than the former.

The paper’s reasons Mayor Mike should run again? (Other than because he’s “a salesman with a soul,” of course.)

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The Good Guys: A Look Back

Four years ago around this time, you could have tuned into Fox on a Monday night and watched an hour-long action-comedy called The Good Guys, shot in Dallas and set in a semi-accurate but definitely made-for-TV version of Dallas. Prior to its debut in June 2010, I spent some time on the set and wrote several thousand words about the show. Some of those words were dedicated to what The Good Guys could do for our city, both economically and culturally. It could give the city’s rank-and-file members of the TV and film production community steady work and maybe (maybe!) change people’s perception of Dallas, the ideas formed by J.R. Ewing’s various machinations and Chuck Norris doing spinning axe kicks in a cowboy hat.

Well, it didn’t.

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Wired Looks at Ladar Levison’s Secure Email Project

In case you missed it (I did), on Friday Wired published a story about our favorite alliterative email service provider, Ladar Levison. Ladar is currently holed up in a house in North Texas, cranking away on his next project, a super-secure email system called Dark Mail. The Wired story goes into how this new email system will work, but more interesting is Ladar’s collaborator Stephen Watt:

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Dallas Was Trying To Save Children All the Way Back in 1940

Paula Bosse has an interesting piece on her blog, Flashback: Dallas. You’ll notice certain parallels between current events and what was going on 75 years ago. Here’s how Bosse’s story begins:

In the summer of 1940, a group called The Children’s Evacuation Committee of Texas was organized to bring child refugees to Dallas, even if it meant sending a ship across the Atlantic Ocean to get them. Its chairman was local businessman George Edgley, a transplanted Briton who owned a music shop and performed around town as an actor and musician.

The group was formed in response to the heavily publicized plight of English children living under the constant threat of attack during World War II. The situation was of great international concern, and plans were drawn up to evacuate the children to safety.

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Leading Off (7/21/14)

Dallas Bike Czar Originally Moved to Dallas to Work for TxDOT. Ashley Haire calls it the “ultimate irony” in this Dallas Morning News piece. The 36-year-old engineer relocated from Portland to work as a project manager on the reconstruction of I-30 and I-35E. Now, with her new position that she started in May, she’s planning new bike lanes, is pro bike-sharing programs, and supports the City Council’s decision repealing the helmet requirement. More biking news: Dallas may start counting the number of bikers on the streets with the help of the North Central Texas Council of Governments. And Fort Worth Mayor Betsy Price hopped on her bike to lead the Tour de Fort Worth, an event the 64-year-old mayor created three years ago.

What’s Going on With these Civilian Police Officers? Ten are headed to the jail to wait with suspects before they’re booked. This is part of Chief David Brown’s effort to save money by hiring fewer officers in advance of a projected $14 million budget shortfall. But the president of the Dallas Fraternal Order of Police, Richard Todd, is saying this is really just a swap of manpower. Now the clerical work they were doing back at police headquarters, for instance, will have to be done by someone else. Also on the civilian public safety front, Steve Blow offers this take on the new inductees into the reserve police force.

Flower Mound Teen Dies in Go-Kart Accident. 14-year-old Kierstin Eaddy was participating in a racing event outside Texas Motor Speedway Sunday when her kart failed to stop after crossing the finish line. She crashed through a fence, and her helmet came off. Eaddy was airlifted to Texas Health Harris Methodist Hospital, where she was later pronounced dead. An investigation is underway.

Rangers 20 Games Below .500. The Rangers lost 9-6 to the Toronto Blue Jays Sunday, dropping the struggling team to 20 below .500 for the first time since 2003. It’s only the sixth time in the history of the team that they’ve fallen 20 below in the first 100 games. Sunday’s game was No. 98. Next up: Yankees. Choice quote: “Texas has been really, really bad.”

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The Barrett Brown Review of Arts and Letters and Jail: There Was a Bad Mutha Who Lived in an SHU

In the last edition of this column, I noted that the powers that be here at the Seagoville Correctional Institution had seen fit to place me in the SHU, also known as “the hole,” without actually accusing me of any particular infraction punishable by time in the hole. Three weeks later, I’m still sitting in what I like to think of as jail-jail, waiting for the internal prison security agency known as SIS to charge me with something or let me go or beat me with a stick or whatever it is that they do here. Incidentally, I’m unclear as to what “SIS” stands for, but I do feel obligated to point out, just for the record, that it’s just one letter shy of ISIS. I’m just saying, is all.

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Things To Do In Dallas This Weekend: July 18—20

If you aren’t one of the lucky ones to attend the programming portion of the Mayborn, I hear that the hotel bar at the Hilton DFW Executive Conference Center is the most happening place to be this weekend, and not a glorified teacher’s lounge like you might suspect.

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My Detente With the Avian Kingdom Is At An End

If you read this blog, or our magazine, or follow me on Twitter, you are more than aware I have had — as of late — a bit of a problem with birds. Specifically, owls. The owl situation seems to be under control now, though I assure you, my head remains on a swivel whenever I am outside my house after dark. More troubling, however, is that now the problem has spread to pretty much all birds.

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Leading Off (7/18/14)

Dallas ISD Investigator Placed on Leave. Jeremy Liebbe managed the Professional Standards Office, a investigative unit of the school district’s human resources department. He recently led the probe into the sports recruiting scandal that led to the firing of 15 employees and had previously made a name for himself as a DISD police officer by uncovering the “cheese” heroin epidemic. On Thursday he was placed on paid leave and escorted out of his office by district police. The district declined to comment on the reason for the move but did say it’s unrelated to the recruiting scandal.

Ellis County Judge Paid For Work She Didn’t Do. The state of Texas pays county judges — whose primary responsibility is presiding the commissioners court that oversees county government — an extra $15,000 a year if they devote 40 percent of their job to judicial cases. Carol Bush filed a request for that payment for the last couple years even though she didn’t hear any cases. The money, more than $22,000, has been repaid, but Bush is under investigation to determine if she committed any crimes.

Mortuary Gives Woman Wrong Ashes. It’s the same place in Fort Worth where, on Tuesday, eight bodies were found after the mortuary’s operators had been evicted. Michelle Jones-McElhanon told Fox 4 that her mother, who died three months ago, was supposed to have been cremated but was instead among the bodies found. Jones-McElhanon had already been given what was supposed to have been her mother’s ashes.

Enjoy the Cool Weather. Yesterday the temperature only got up to 79. That was a record-low high for the day. Today’s forecast calls for a high of 83. It is July 18. So much for global warming, amiright?

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Dallas Mavs’ Ivan Johnson Has a Potty Mouth

A longtime FrontBurnervian points us to video posted on Deadspin of a summer league contest between the Mavs and Hornets. Ivan Johnson falls down, goes boom, then has a pretty salty question for the ref. At this point, I’m going to need about 2,000 words from Zac about Johnson, his background, his scouting report, and whether I should care about his clumsiness and vulgar language.

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Why Is the Air We Breathe Getting Worse?

The Texas Tribune yesterday published a story that you should read — but only if you live in North Texas and if you breathe air. It only matters to that group of people. Here’s the top-line summary: though we are still way above where the federal government wants us on ozone, for years our levels had been dropping. In 2008, as you can see from the above chart generated from research done at UNT, that trend reversed itself. And the rise in ozone levels has accelerated fastest in parts of North Texas where the most drilling is done. It’s an important story. It’s not that long. Please read it — again, though, only if you live here and breathe air.

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Dallas Weather Forecast: DUCK!

Nothing much happening in downtown Dallas right now, except for a bunch of clouds. But — holy hell — up north in Denton and Cooke counties today’s heavy rains have already arrived and it sounds like chaos, with highways shut down and roads flooded.

WFAA says we’re going to several rounds of rain through tomorrow. So a downpour is coming your way later today, if it hasn’t reached you already.

Be careful out there.

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