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You May Be Done with the Drought, But It’s Not Done with You

The drought that began in late 2010 (or did it begin in 2009, or 2005, or 2003 with some wet periods in between?) is intensifying again.

Uh-oh, Dan Patrick’s Got Another Idea to Improve Women’s Health

It almost seems as if state Sen. Dan Patrick, the talk-radio Republican from Houston, spends his free time thinking up ways to antagonize people who are already in a politically disadvantaged position.

Selling the Ultimate Man Cave

Breastaurants have become a big business in Texas by marketing and selling a male-focused illusory experience. Turns out the ultimate male dream is pretty shallow.

Payday Loans: A Pound of Flesh—Fees May Apply

Let’s be plain about what makes these businesses so profitable: usury. Structuring a loan to charge $130 in fees per $100 borrowed (that’s the average for a payday loan paid back in installments) is usury, regardless of the political contortions that keep such businesses legal.

Texas Women’s Health Advocates to Bypass State in Bid for Federal Funds

Texas lawmakers have spent the past two years attacking family planning services in the state, cutting funds for programs that provide women with birth control and wellness exams. Now family planning advocates are fighting back.

Exit Polling: Not Just Numbers

Exit polls are important not just to need-for-speed news jockeys in a rush to announce winners and losers on the evening news or the online front page. If conducted with cultural sensitivity, they can open a window into the soul of Texas’ rapidly changing minority demographic.

Mariposa’s Song: Peter LaSalle Explores Lives of Los Indocumentados

Peter LaSalle’s new novel Mariposa’s Song (The Americas Series, Texas Tech University Press) tells of a 20-year-old Honduran young woman, Mariposa, who in 2005 is in the U.S. without documentation and working as a B-girl in a scruffy East Austin nightclub called El Pajáro Verde.

Texas Democrats, Make Your Move

Forget about the great GOP awakening. Now is the perfect time for Texas Democrats to figure out what the hell they’re doing. The default explanation for their dismal showing was that Texas is not just red but bloody red, a stronghold of the Republican Party and ruled with an iron fist by Pharaoh, forcing the Chosen Ones to wander aimlessly in the desert looking for manna from heaven. But now the shifting demographics coupled with a rather clueless opposition party should be working in their favor.

Rick Perry’s ‘Compassionate’ Sales Pitch for Drug-Testing Welfare Recipients

At Thigpen Energy in Cut and Shoot, Tex., Wednesday, Rick Perry explained why proposed legislation requiring Texans to pass a drug test before receiving welfare is “compassionate.”

Portrait of Wally Recounts Sordid History of Egon Schiele’s Painting of his Muse

Schiele painted “Portrait of Wally” in 1912. In it, the artist’s mistress and muse, Valerie “Wally” Neuzil, is clothed nearly to her chin in a garment resembling a long-sleeve puritan gown, complete with a white Bertha collar.