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THE TEXAS OBSERVER The Texas Observer Publishing Co. 1974 Ronnie Dugger, Publisher A window to the South A journal of free voices Vol. LXVI, No. 25 Dec. 27, 1974 locorporating the State Observer and the East Texas Democrat, which in turn incorporated the Austin ForumAdvocate. EDITOR Kaye Northcott CO-EDITOR Molly Ivins ASSOCIATE EDITOR John Ferguson EDITOR AT LARGE Ronnie Dugger BUSINESS STAFF Joe Espinosa Jr. C. R. Olofson Keith Stanford Published by Texas Observer Publishing Co., biweekly except for a three week interval between issues twice a year, in July and January; 25 issues per year. Entered as second-class matter April 26, 1937, at the Post Office at Austin, Texas, under the Act of March 3, 1879. Second class postage paid at Austin, Texas. Single Copy, soq. One year, $8.00; two years, $14.00; three years, $19.00; plus, for Texas addresses, 5% sales tax. Foreign, except APO/FPO. 50 additional per year. Airmail, bulk orders, and group rates on request. Microfilmed by Microfilming Corporation of America, 21 Harristown Road, Glen Rock, N.J. 07452. Change of Address: Please give old and new address, including zip codes, and allow two weeks. Postmaster: Send form 3579 to Texas Observer, 600 W. 7th St., Austin, Texas 78701. Editorial and Business Offices: The Texas Observer, 600 W. 7th St., Austin, Texas 78701. Telephone 477-0746. 7.4EVP’7iF We will serve no group or party but will hew hard to the truth as we find it and the right as we see it. We are dedicated to the whole truth, to human values above all interests, to the rights of humankind as the foundation of democracy; we will take orders from none but our own conscience, and never will we overlook or misrepresent the truth to serve the interests of the powerful or cater to the ignoble in the human spirit. The editor has exclusive control over the editorial policies and contents of the Observer. None of the other people who are associated with the enterprise shares this responsibility with her. Writers are responsible for their own work, but not for anything they have not themselves written, and in publishing them the editor does not necessarily imply that she agrees with them, because this is a journal of free voices. CONTENTS APPRECIATIONS Page 3 Getting to be 20 and a respectable, middle-aged institution after all those years of being called “that pinko rag” leaves us feeling uncharacteristically mellow. Turns out what when we think about the last 20 years, there are just a whole lot of people we’d like to thank or remember or just have you all share in the delight of knowing them a little. IN A LIGHTER VEIN Page 12 While the Observer has generally addressed itself to mighty weighty topics, it has not infrequently found some veins of hilarity in those self-same topics. We sometimes think there are only three possible Faute de mieux, we’ve laughed a lot. GREAT SCANDALS Page 38 We have always maintained that the chief reason we are a muckraking publication is because there’s such an abundance of muck to be raked in Texas. While other Texas newspapers have professed an “objectivity” that bears some resemblance to the results of a frontal lobotomy, the Observer has taken a wholesome glee in nailing thee hides of a wildly variegated collection of Bad Guys to its editorial door. We reprise here some of the more memorable scandals of the past 20 years. The Observer has also given much attention to Texas’ greatest, single, continuing scandal the condition of black people and brown people in this state. A sampler of our reportage on racism over the years is also offered in this section. SUMMING UP Page 57 Now what’s an issue of the Observer without some first class pondering done therein? We present with pleasure an all-star pride of ponderers who address themselves to the past, the present, and the future.