Letters to the Observer



The world needs more Tom Palaimas and Willie Nelsons (“Alive and Singing the Truth,” January 11). Thank you for having the courage to write and publish this during our lifetimes.

Susan Morrison via e-mail


Finished my cover-to-cover perusal of the “Primaries ’08” issue. I was particularly pleased with Andrew Wheat’s fine piece of research journalism, “Saving Speaker Craddick” (January 25). It was a classic Texas Observer examination of the shadowy world of big bucks influence upon, and corruption of, the world of Texas (and national) politics.

For the half century-plus of my devoted attention, the Observer has consistently exposed secrecy and sleaze and corruption and championed the cause of responsible, representative democracy. So, why, I wonder, is the Observer not singing the praise and the promise of the candidacy of Ray McMurrey in the Democratic primary race for U.S. Senate?

I think him to be fully capable of becoming a great senator, in the tradition of Ralph Yarborough, or an equally great congressman in the tradition of Henry B. Gonzales. He exhibits incredible integrity and commitment to honest, open, responsive, and responsible government.

If the Observer is to remain true to its historical devotion to promoting democratic ideals and good government in Texas and America, I cannot understand why it has not grasped the potential of a candidate like Ray McMurrey and, at a bare minimum, offered up a serious examination of the man and his views.

Tom Camfield San Angelo


I was overwhelmed by this review (“A Good Place to Shed Your Culture,” January 25). Rarely have I seen a review in these pages that finds a book so clearly bigger than its subject. Your reviewer Josh Rosenblatt obviously found a soul mate in this author and could read his mind, and perhaps even complete a few of the author’s unfinished thoughts. Rosenblatt is eloquent, perceptive, and at times understated when we know he is withholding very high praise. It is such a fine essay to read and relish. Thank you. Now on to the book itself …

Catherine Tensing via e-mail


Great article; thorough research (“Full Stream Ahead,” February 8). County land use control is the only real answer to this dilemma. And if the Legislature would be willing for once to grant that, and tweak some legislative stewardship laws for the LCRA, then the bulk of the over-building and expansion in the beautiful Hill Country could be curtailed in a reasonable manner for the benefit of Austin’s future.

D.B. Goodson via e-mail


Thank you for mentioning the credit card debt problems in your article (“Borrowed Trouble,” January 25). The whole mortgage fiasco is an evolution of what the credit card companies learned several years ago. “60 Minutes” did two shows about spiraling interest rates and fees, but it seems that nobody noticed. I appreciate Michigan Sen. Carl Levin, who is constantly trying to legislate regulations to put a halt to this loan-sharking. Is there no one in the whole state of Texas who understands consumer protection anymore?

Wallis Parnelle via e-mail