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Tag: Texas

Standing Rock Isn’t The Only Pipeline Fight: West Texas Activists Resist Trans-Pecos Pipeline

Posted in Journalism, and Lee Camp

After the recent, short-term victory in the battle against the Dakota Access Pipeline, a pair of new encampments led by Native Americans opposed to the Trans-Pecos Pipeline in West Texas show that the tactics of the #NoDAPL water protectors have spread nationwide.

The Army Corps of Engineers denied a critical permit to the Dakota Access Pipeline on December 4, delaying completion of construction until Donald Trump takes office, and giving opponents more time to target the pipeline’s financial sponsors. On Saturday, one Native American water protector and one local resident of Alpine, Texas, a community threatened by the Trans-Pecos Pipeline, locked themselves to construction equipment owned by Energy Transfer Partners, the Dallas-based company behind both pipelines. …

A Brief Primer On Texas’ F*CKED Up Politics & Why It Matters To You

Posted in Act Out!, Austin, Creative Commons, Journalism, and Video

Whenever you talk about terrible things happening in Texas, people start to tune out. You’re thinking, of course it’s fucking awful, it’s Texas. Why don’t we let them secede already?

It’s true, Texas politics seem like what happens when you apply dystopian novel “The Handmaid’s Tale” as an instruction manual BUT everything that happens there is a test balloon. The University of Texas at Austin motto is “what starts here changes the world.” And with most states and the U.S. Congress united behind that shit stain Trump, you can bet we’ll all be eating the same shit-filled Texas chili soon enough.

Now, the Texas government is full of low-life scum, but due to the peculiar whims of Texas politics, the Lt. Governor is a scumbag who stands above all the rest. The Lt. Governor is not just president of the state senate, but also sets the agenda for the entire legislative session. The senators and reps have a lot of politics to get through in a short amount of time, because the Texas State legislature only meets for 140 days every other year. Lemme say that again but slower: A hundred and 40 days EVERY OTHER year. The rest of the time, that massive building is just a big pink tourist trap.…

Texas Climate Change Denier Rick Perry’s Legacy Of Fossil Fuels & Wind Power

Posted in Journalism, and MintPress News

On Tuesday, Donald Trump announced Rick Perry, the avowed climate change denier and former governor of Texas, is headed to the White House as the president-elect’s pick to head the Department of Energy.

While Perry actually helped turn Texas into a leader in wind power generation, the name of the department he’s been tapped to head eluded the governor in a now infamous incident at a 2011 Republican presidential debate during the first of his two unsuccessful bids for president.

He was attempting to name three federal departments he would dismantle if elected, including the Departments of Education and Commerce, but stumbled when he seemed to confuse the Department of Energy with the Environmental Protection Agency:…

Austin Anarchist Black Cross: Solidarity With National Prison Strike (Audio Interview)

Posted in Austin, Journalism, and MintPress News

On Friday, I attended a small Austin protest held in solidarity with the national prison strike. This historic event was expected to take place at dozens of facilities around the country and potentially involve hundreds of inmates, and was scheduled to coincide with the 45th anniversary of the Attica Prison riots.

About 15 people protested in South Austin at the showroom of Texas Correctional Industries, a private corporation that sells products made through unpaid prison labor. Although prisoners are not paid for their work, which is mandatory, TCI brought in over $88 million in fiscal year 2014.

I interviewed an anonymous member of the Austin Anarchist Black Cross for my article in The Texas Observer on the protest but, as so often happens in journalism, great quotes get cut because you run out of space. Fortunately, I obtained permission to share the interview on SoundCloud. …

Texas Activists Protest Modern-Day ‘Slavery’ in Prisons

Posted in Austin, Journalism, and The Texas Observer

While prison inmates launched a nationwide strike last Friday — the 45th anniversary of the Attica prison riots — a small but vocal group of activists gathered in Austin to support their cause.

Hundreds of inmates have joined the Incarcerated Workers Organizing Committee(IWOC), a division of the Industrial Workers of the World union and a major motivator of the strike. Inmates at 40 facilities in 24 states were expected to take part, and some Texas prisoners have been engaging in work stoppages since April.

Prisoners say they want their work to count toward time off their sentences, improved living conditions in prisons, better access to attorneys during disputes, and an end to an annual $100 copay on medical services.…

Court Orders Texas To Offer Arsenic-Free Water To Elderly Prisoners Amid Deadly Heat

Posted in Journalism, and MintPress News

As summer sun sends temperatures soaring across much of the country, a federal judge has ordered the Lone Star State to stop giving poisonous drinking water to some of its most vulnerable prisoners.

On June 21, U.S. District Judge Keith Ellison gave prison officials 15 days to replace the arsenic-laden water supply at the Wallace Pack Unit, a minimum security facility northwest of Houston that houses mostly elderly and chronically ill inmates. In his decision, Ellison said the tainted water “violates contemporary standards of decency.”

“The Texas Department of Criminal Justice plans to appeal the ruling, according to a spokesman,” The Houston Chronicle reported.…

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