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The expressions of Sens. Carl Parker and Ron Glower say all that needs to be said about the 66th Legislature. Thorp Springs Press paperback, $3.00 clothbound, $10.00 available June 1 Order from: Brazos Book Shop 803 Red River Austin, Texas 78701 Alan Pogue reclamation of “prime farmland” after it’s mined. But HB 1424 allows strip miners in many cases to avoid reclamation of topsoil, and it greatly narrows the definition of prime farmland, excluding woodland and rangeland. The bill eventually passed the Senate on a voice vote and was duly signed by the governor, but not before Sen. Ron Clower tried to amend it to restore a strict definition of prime farmland. His amendment was tabled by a 22-to-8 vote, and Observer stars go to the eight who stood up for the land. 13. Wire tapping Close to the top of Gov. Bill Clements’ wish list this year was SB 981, a bill al lowing the Department of Public Safety to engage in wire tapping and bugging, trampling on the civil liberties of Texans. Though the DPS powers would theoretically have been limited to gathering evidence in drug cases, the fruits of the lawmen’s labors could have been used in any court proceeding, criminal or civil. Senators had to vote on the issue at least five times, and the bill got caught up in a lot of gubernatorial horse-trading and arm-twisting. But the key vote, the one on which civil libertarians really needed to hold their forces together, came on May 15 when Sen. Ed Howard moved to suspend the rules to consider SB 981 on second reading. Eleven votes would have killed it, but the bill’s opponents only had ten \(though they had gotten 12 on an identical vote the week besend it to the House, but not until May 24. At that point, a two-thirds vote was needed for House consideration, and SB 981 couldn’t even muster a simple majority. Chalk up one victory for people’s right to privacy, despite the Senate action. Observer stars to the ten who voted “no” on May 15. Coming in the Observer’s June 22 issue: more on the “accomplishments” of the 66th Legislature. -Eds. “Amado Muro may become more legendary in the Southwest than B. Traven himself.” Elroy Bode The Texas Observer “No one has written more powerfully or more sensitively of Southwestern Chicanos than Amado Muro; no one has better captured what it’s like to be down and out in Juarez and Bakersfield.” Gerald Haslam TA WTE “Amado Muro was the funniest, brightest, most moving, accomplished, and prolific `Mexican American’ writer, a veritable Isaac Babel of the Southwest.” John Womack, Jr. The New York Review of Books “These short stories may be the best that have been written in this country about men on the road and in the fields, at the missions, and in the villages of Mexico. Muro wrote of men with “eyes so deep-set that the shadows around them looked like bruises,” whose clothes were “so ragged they tied them on with binder twine,” who “bleached the four-dollar blood bank’s finger marks off with clorox so they wouldn’t have to wait six weeks to put down again.” William Rintoul The Nation 16 JUNE 8, 1979