Water & Politics

A few water-related tidbits bubbling up from the springs...... March 4. Environmental Defense hosts its 5th annual statewide water conference at the Ladybird Johnson Wildlflower Center in Austin. Creating “New” Water: Exploring the Options is this year’s theme. Be there, if like me, you've got water on the brain. Details are at www.texaswatermatters.org

Keep your eyes on the Caddo Lake coalition's lawsuit against the City of Marshall, presently being heard by the Texas Supreme Ct. If the case goes in Caddo Lake’s favor, bet on the Lege acting swiftly to suppress similar legal actions by limiting public comment and challenges to future water plays. Public input is already restricted on issues that come before the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality, as if that mattered--everyone knows the agency functions as an industry helper rather than a consumer defender. Truth is, all politics may be local, but in Texas, the state has all the power and legislators are not about to make laws to give cities or counties more power. Industry contributes more money to offlicials than governments do. Which makes the Governor’s race in 2006 all the more interesting. Not that we know anything about politics

Joe Nick’s handicapping of the 2006 Texas Governor’s race on a 100 point scale: Kay Bailey Hutchison, 45, until she’s more effectively smeared as a “librul”; Gobanador “Reeck” Perry, 30, until his compassionate, Big Umbrella side emerges or homebuilder/Swift Boat Veterans financier Bob Perry pours a few more million into the campaign in exchange for homebuilder protection against homeowner lawsuits); and in a statistical tie, Carol Keeton/McClellen/Rylander/Strayhorn, 12.5, and Richard “Kinky” Friedman, 12.5, a statistical dead heat until Carol divorces and marries again and/or gains another 100 pounds, or Kinky’s pricey cigar-buying and slot machine-gambling habits and his support of the Iraq War are exposed in the mainstream media

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