him. \(August 24, 1973, issue of your Thanks for your consideration. Ellis Sandoz, Professor and Head, Department of Political Science, East Texas State University, Commerce, Texas. Sorry, sorry, very sorry. We had wrong information. Jones teaches at Lon Morris College in Jacksonville, Texas. Ed. Spendthrift recants In a fit of economy last year, my husband and I decided not to renew any magazines/periodicals/journals. So when the Observer sub expired last February, I let it expire, only to discover that, of all times, I surely couldn’t live without the Observer while the Leg was in session. So I renewed. So what the hell. Sign me up for one and a half years. I am angry with you, though, for your very skimpy coverage of Sen. Lloyd Doggett’s campaign. Did the summer doldrums hit you too? Judy Malkin, 4105 Lullwood Rd., Austin, Tex. 78722. Abolish away Hate to say it, but your anti-usury comments in “Political Intelligence” in the June 29th issue sounded kinda wishy-washy 24 The Texas Observer really do think that the late Catholic social philosopher, Peter Maurin, of the “Catholic Worker” Movement, put it best when he wrote: ” . . . Usurers were not considered to be gentlemen when people used to listen to the Prophets of Israel and the Fathers of the Church. They could npt see anything gentle in trying to live on the sweat of somebody else’s brow by lending money at interest. We made the mistake of running business on credit, and credit has run into debts, and debts are leading us toward bankruptcy. . . . ” John Maynard Keynes, the well-known English economist, says that we ought to ask ourselves if the medieval economist was not sound in condemning money-lending at interest. . . . R. M. Tawney, another English economist, points out that at the base of our acquisitive society we find legalized usury: money-lending at interest. Because the State has legalized money-lending at interest, in spite of the teachings of the Prophets of Israel and the Fathers of the Church, home-owners have mortgaged their homes, farm-owners have mortgaged their farms, institutions have mortgaged their buildings, governments have mortgaged their budgets. In other words, friends, let’s quit “tsk, tsk-ing” over misuse of the power of usury, and think about ELIMINATING the powers of usury. Or is that too simple? John Rohde, 2700 W. Grauwyler, Irving, Tex. Of axles and action Leland may have undertaken a stranger task of education than that forced on Moses, who confronted the Israelites with the tablets. Moses had only to suffer savages learning to read, while Mickey must make that functional somnambulant Li’l Dolph think. The Guv is lucky his limousine didn’t bust an axle in the Fifth Ward. My late Uncle Clement once told me the story of how the streets in the adjacent Third Ward got paved in the first place. That would make it the ’20’s. In my youth \(not in the Houston doing real estate appraisals, we did not dwell too much on exact chronology. It was enough to know the decade. He was interested in people much more than time. So he would tell me the pedigrees of the families who had had mansions on Main Street. The sight of a site now glossed with asphalt, crowned with fluorescence, would remind him of the house that used to stand there, in the days of the Kirbys, and he’d be off committing genealogy on a tender stripling. But Uncle Clement did manage to work in a fact or two, if I may vigorously understate the facts. He told me about the time the Mayor took a drive in the city Packard through a new development out past the edge of town at Elgin Street. He also told me that the hill in Hermann Park was bought as a favor to a contractor friend of City Hall’s who had dug a giant excavation somewhere \(could it have been this dirt anyway. That’s in the Third Ward, all right, but it’s not in this story. Apparently this Mayor of the ’20’s had just been recently delegated to the public trough and thereupon bought the first guaranteed, copperbottomed, humongous mother limousine the City of Houston had ever owned. The Packard was a good roadster, but it was not designed for guerrilla warfare against “chug-holed, unpaved streets” \(Obs., prairie roads he drove over west of Almeda, south of Elgin were not long removed from wagon wheels. And the Mayor broke an axle on that Packard at 20 miles an hour. The Fifth Ward has been inhabited for as long as the Third, but also longer by black people than the Third. To my knowledge at this date the Third Ward which was white until the last 15 years is all paved. I think the project was completed in the ’50’s. That the Fifth still lacks the sanitation, safety and convenience of paving offers a stern test to Rancho Dolpho one which Tie-Diamond Welch has already failed, not to mention my Uncle Clement. For if Briscoe actually decides to do anything for Leland’s constituents, he will find what Lilywhite Louie would have found if he’d bothered to investigate the same area. Namely that streets except as designated by the City are paved in accordance with formula financing assessed on the property owners alongside. Thus when the slumlords won’t pay and the citizens can’t the result is it doesn’t get done. And of all objects of befuddlement none is greater than the tax-to-improvement ratio as divided among state and local governments. So our pauncheous Guv is going to have to get an increased allottment from Costal States Gas in order to keep the Mansion lights on late at night if he wants to pave Mickey’s streets for him. Hizzexcellenz could beg a few free loads of shell off of H. B. Zachary in San Antone and have them dumped on Fifth Ward streets as an interim solution as long as Hizzonner’s friends Stewart Trucking get the haulage contract. But I bet all the concern Mickey begot in the Guv will be as visible as a midge among mosquitoes to Rep. Leland’s constituents. Also far less palpable to their axles than the chug-holes. Dolph’s lucky he didn’t bust an axle he’d hadda do something then. James M. Yeager, Rt. 1, Box 110-A, Middleburg, Va. 22117.
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