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Texas miracle

So that’s the Texas miracle: Pass the buck to the federal government, and then attack the federal government for spending too much money!

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) – Texas Gov. Rick Perry has asked the U.S. Department of Homeland Security for nearly $350 million to cover the costs incurred detaining illegal immigrants in state prisons and county jails.

In a letter to Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano, Perry criticized the federal government hasn’t been doing enough to secure the border with Mexico, thereby allowing illegal immigrants to enter the U.S. and use taxpayer-funded resources, including prisons and jails. It’s a claim the Republican governor has made many times before.

The letter was dated Aug. 10, three days before Perry formally announced he is running for president.

Reached after-hours Friday by phone, DHS spokesman Matthew Chandler said he wasn’t in position to comment and said he could not confirm that the DHS had even received the letter.

Perry has been criticized by some fellow conservatives as being too lenient on illegal immigration issues. Unlike fellow GOP presidential hopeful Rep. Michele Bachmann, Perry does not think the U.S. should build a wall spanning the entire Mexican border. Perry also has supported discounted tuition rates for the children of illegal immigrants at Texas universities, and he has said Arizona’s tough-on-immigration law wouldn’t be right for Texas.

In his two-page letter to Napolitano, Perry described the formula he used to determine the costs, including $94.4 million to cover the costs incurred by county jails.

Stormy weather

Echo & the Bunnymen:

God’s waiting room

I wasn’t happy about going to the neighborhood Medicaid mill, but the emergency medical workers said they had to take me to the closest place. So they gave me a spritz of nitroglycerin under my tongue and hooked me up for an EKG. (I found out later it was “irregular.”)

I was settled into my own cubicle sometime around 5:15 am when new patients started pouring into the waiting room, the stretchers lined up against walls and counters. It looked like a war zone.

The ER team dealt with two brothers who’d shared the same bag of strong heroin and were brought in after overdosing. One brother continued to insist he’d only had “one beer.”

“Uh huh. Is that why you keep falling asleep?” the doctor said loudly. “Tell us what you did, or we’ll have to put you on a ventilator. You want to be on a ventilator?”

“No, man,” the junkie mumbled. He admitted he’d injected heroin, and so the nurse gave him a shot of narcotics antagonist that jarred him back to consciousness.

Once the doctor told me he was going to admit me, somewhere around 8 a.m., I just wanted to get out of there and into my own room. I finally got one at 1:30 p.m.

One of the blood tests showed very high levels of enzymes that indicated pancreatitis, which made me nervous because my dad died of pancreatic cancer and the symptoms are the same. But the CAT scan showed nothing and the rest of the blood tests were clear. The GI specialist told me there was no way my levels could be that high and disappear in the rest of the tests, so he thought the high test was probably a lab error. (Grrr. Damn him for making me drink that vile contrast solution for no good reason — and for putting me on a no-eating regimen the whole time I was there.)

Then I had to have a cardiac stress test. Arghh! Nuff said. The guy who took the pictures told me he couldn’t diagnose, but my heart looked good and my effusion rate was pretty damned good. The cardiologist confirmed it, and they finally let me go home.

Home. Sweet home.

Thanks for all the good wishes and donations. Nice to know if I died, people would notice.

Summer

Buffalo Tom:

Everybody wants it.

Kevin Drum, talking about Jon Chait, talking about Everybody. Wants. Obama. To. Stand. Up.

It’s amazing that a plurality wants Obama to confront the GOP more strongly. Want to see something even more amazing? You’re seeing non-trivial numbers of Republicans say that Obama should stand up to the Republicans.

There’s more deeper in, about a Pew survey that shows even republicans don’t like republicans, except for Romney and Perry:

Of the party’s best-known possible candidates, only Mitt Romney and Rick Perry have broad potential appeal: 54% of registered voters who have heard of Romney say there is a good chance (16%) or some chance (38%) they would vote for the former Massachusetts governor. Nearly half (47%) say there is at least some chance they would vote for Perry, though an identical percentage (47%) says there is no chance they will support Perry.

Hi kids

I’m home, but running around doing pre-hurricane stuff. Check in with you shortly!

Saturation point

Somebody loan me a lifeboat, the weather reports aren’t sounding any more optimistic:

… Even if Irene loses some of its punch as works its way up the coast, moderate to major impacts — including flooding, downed trees and significant power outages — are still anticipated in the heart of the urban corridor from Philadelphia to Boston, especially near and east of I-95.

Much of the “urban corridor” is already saturated from unusually high August rainfall levels, so this is going to be interesting and probably unpleasant. Pay attention to those flood warnings.

Soon after the recent earthquake, a talking head joked that the Washington Monument had been damaged, but no one was sure yet if it was leaning left or right. Turns out the sucker really was damaged

It’ll all work out.

Book I’m reading.

I first got into considering copyright law by way of knitting blogs, and discussions of pattern sharing. (Many, many flame wars.) “Common as Air; revoluton, art, and ownership”, by Lewis Hyde, is a discussion of intellectual property and the ways history and geography have created to consider the products of the mind.

Hyde quotes Thomas Jefferson as saying,” The field of knowledge is the common property of mankind.” (And oh, do I want to fling that at some teapartier, some day.) Of course, the idea of “commons,” appearing in places like Creative Commons, is discussed. A mention is made of the World Trade Organization persuading Saudi Arabia to reform their views regarding bootlegging, which is traced back to Islamic law, in which a thief who stole a book was considered to only steal the paper and ink, because the ideas were not tangible property.

I think Susie has mentioned the fierce competition and industrial spying in the fashion world, and how it has invigorated the field. Talking about reworked plot lines, Ursula K. LeGuin said something like, “We all stand on the shoulders of giants,” leading us to consider Jung’s archetypes. Steve Job’s retirement will probably prompt some discussion of who owns what, and why. Like I said, I’ve only started the book, but it looks like a thorough review of a complicated subject. I hope it at least touches on the power of money and how the drive to get money has influenced the consideration of ideas. I’m looking forward to getting deeper into this book.

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