Tuesday, May 31, 2011
Monday, May 30, 2011
Friday, May 27, 2011
If you live in District 1, please vote for Lyda Ness-Garcia. If you don’t but have friends or family members who do, please urge them to vote for Lyda Ness-Garcia.
You know that I’ve agonized over this endorsement and thought it through as a conservationist and as someone who loves my native home town. Here’s how I reached my decision:
As you all know, Ann Lilly signed a letter in order to garner 858 votes from her opponents, Manny Hinojosa and Abe Peinado. That action disgusted me and disgusted everyone else I’ve talked to in her district. When I submitted petitions to City Council to save open space land, Ann pontificated that she was sick of petitions and that all of us should just go along with whatever our representatives (or, in Ann’s case, Woody Hunt and the Citizens for Prosperity PAC) want us to do.
I’m wondering. We have almost 1300 valid petition signatures so far – of which a sizable number are from District 1 – certainly more than 858 votes that Ann sold her soul for. Wonder if Lilly will sign a letter changing her vote to preserve open space now?
Remember how Ms. Lilly ousted her predecessor, Susan Austin? She told people in District 1 that she was the open space candidate. Open space people gave her money and went door to door for her. One of them told me – and I will not sugar coat this – “Ann Lilly screwed us and she needs to be kicked in the ass.”
Trust is important.
Ann’s opponent, Lyda Ness-Garcia wrote to her supporters: “My belief system cannot be compromised. My vote cannot be sold. You and I may not always agree on all the issues but you always know where I stand.”
I have been concerned whether Lyda was really firmly open space. The fact that some property managers and some in the building community support her did concern me. I asked her to her face with one of those business persons sitting at the same table whether she was for preserving land along Transmountain. She didn’t bat an eye and made it clear that her stance on widening Transmountain also meant no Plexxar and no Paseo del Norte. In fact, her stance on this issue and all others has been consistent with the newspapers and in the public forums. Her email makes all of her positions clear including the preservation of our open spaces and Upper Valley.
Being pro-conservation and open space does not mean being anti-business. Frankly, the fact that she wants to recruit businesses aggressively and reduce permits, fees and bonds is more the reason to support her.
Trust is important. So is leadership.
Lilly has flip-flopped while deferring to City practices that are unfriendly to business. Where was the leadership? Lilly refuses to debate, do interviews, appear in public. She does not return phone calls. Where is the leadership? Where is the representative who relates to the people she represents? Where is the transparency and accountability?
Ann goes with the money and Ann goes for votes. She will get elected by supporting open space and then betray her constituents. She will support domestic partner benefits until she needs to win an election. And, even after a Judge rules on the matter, she still can’t comment. Where’s the leader? Where’s the leadership? It certainly didn’t show up in the TxDOT Transmountain debate. Where’s the preservation? Where are the animal corridors? That’s something really to think about in this environment of drought and sprawl that is driving more animals into contact with citizens of El Paso.
One may have disagreements with one’s elected representative. My representative, Susie Byrd, and I sometimes disagree. She doesn’t hesitate to tell me that she thinks I’m wrong or that she disagrees. I respect that. I trust her honesty and integrity and count on her leadership. People in District 1 will be able to count on Lyda Ness-Garcia being straight with them. They can’t count on Ann Morgan Lilly.
Lyda Ness-Garcia is the conservation, environmental, business-friendly, transparent, accountable leader and candidate.
Early voting starts this coming Tuesday, May 31. It will end on June 7 followed by the run-off election on Saturday, June 11.
Please vote and urge others to vote for Lyda Ness-Garcia.
Tuesday, May 17, 2011
If after reading the above you still need some motivation before you will click the link and buy the book watch this short clip on biodiversity: United Nations Video - Biodiversity is Life
Thursday, May 12, 2011
Wednesday, May 11, 2011
"Lions need low elevation areas during time of drought to seek water from springs. Here in El Paso we are losing these areas of habitat at an alarming rate, hurting lions and hundreds of other species of wildlife. Perhaps this mountain lion was looking for a drink or simply hungry. I would say she was an adult lion at least 5 years old. All of her life she had done her best to avoid our species. Today she came to know us first hand and now she is no more."
Wednesday, May 4, 2011
“A foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds, adored by little statesmen and philosophers and divines.” So wrote American Transcendentalist philosopher, poet and, yes, divine, Ralph Waldo Emerson. (In case you didn’t know, “divine” is a fancy word for one in the clergy.)
I made some mistakes with my endorsements. I apologize if anyone voted in , early voting based on those recommendations. At first, I thought that I would just let it ride – but I can’t. To try to be strongly resolute would be an egregious and foolish consistency. Remember, I am making endorsements based on environmental and conservation issues although I admit that one can’t base things on one issue and politics and statesmanship require give and take.
There is just too much “baggage” out there with Ms. Mejia. I am the last person to judge. I’m the tax collector in Jesus’ parable in Luke’s Gospel (18:10ff) not the Pharisee. Governing requires getting along and relationships and friendships. I’ll back off my endorsement for District 5. Perhaps some of you in the conservation community will have some suggestions. (I’m posting this same message online, so comment there.)
The District 1 race is more difficult. Recently in an El Paso Times story but more especially in a post from David Karlsruher’s blog, Refuse the Juice, Lyda Ness-Garcia’s substantial debt problems came up. The El Paso Times addressed the issue and Ms. Ness-Garcia says that she is making every effort to make good on her debts and not take the easier road of bankruptcy. Good for her. She is articulate and has a good handle of the issues. She would be a stronger candidate if she would first take care of her business debts. She would then be running as a candidate who overcame her adversities. I look forward to supporting that candidate in the future.
For a long time, Mr. Rick Schecter, has been the champion of open space and the environment. He does his homework. He has integrity. It isn’t just that he should be the conservation community candidate, he has already been that candidate for a long time. He deserves our support. I endorse him.
Do know that I like Ms. Ware-Asbury and know that some in our conservation community will vote for her. I think that she is not as strong or knowledgeable about the issues as Mr. Schecter is. I also like Ann Lilly as a person and admire her service and appreciate her work in helping to preserve Arroyo 41-A. I think she will always side with developers first and open space and/or SmartCode second. It’s a difference of opinion and nothing more.
So, here are the endorsements:
District 1: Richard Schecter
District 5: None – wait for the run-offs
District 6: Eddie Holguin
District 8: Ernesto Villanueva, Jr.
Monday, May 2, 2011
Are you following the earthquakes occurring just SE of us in Mexico? Two occurred last Thursday and two more occurred today.
Go to http://earthquake.usgs.gov/earthquakes/recenteqsww/Quakes/quakes_all.php and scan the list for Chihuahua. Today’s quakes occurred just 85 miles from us. The epicenters were here.
I’m sure you know about all of the hot springs in Texas near Ft. Hancock/Sierra Blanca including the famous Indian Hot Springs (Map) just down river from Fort Hancock and a hand full of miles from today’s Chihuahuan quake. You can draw a straight line from Sierra Blanca to Indian Hot Springs to today’s epicenter in Chihuahua.
Something is cooking underground!