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of teachers for competence. To many people across Texas, the educational reforms such as the “no-pass, no-play” rule were not programs that came from the people, but programs designed by social technocrats and imposed by the government. Mark White didn’t get his ideas on educational reform from the people, but from H. Ross Perot, the richest man in Texas, who, being a successful businessman, was interested in the kind of educational system that would best serve to improve the “business climate.” It’s true that lower income people were served well by the parts of the education reform that equalized state funding to rich and poor school districts. But this is only because community groups, especially in San Antonio and the Rio Grande Valley, have lifted themselves out of political irrelevance and achieved some sense of democratic satisfaction. In this sense, the educational reforms were not a disaster from a populist point of view. But in the sense that the program did not start with the question “How can we democratize the educational system?” it was not populist-inspired. The Democratic party thus came across as interested in making rules but not in helping people take democratic control of their daily lives. ANY POPULIST analysis of Mark White’s governorship would get a lot of mileage out of the role of H. Ross Perot. The leader of the committee that devised the educational programs that became the centerpiece of White’s tenure and one of the most influential lobbying figures in the state Perot also played a similar role in the previous Clements administration. For the Republican governor, Perot led the “War on Drugs” effort and, again, used his highpowered lobbying team to see wiretapping and other measures through the legislature. That both governors would look to the Dallas billionaire to handle their most important initiatives reminds us that White and Clements, in their business-oriented approach, might be more alike than one would think from listening to their commercials. White became the progressive business candidate willing to help bring the state up to modern standards of humane treatment of the lower classes and the indigent, recognizing that welfare reforms do not fundamentally threaten the corporate order or general prosperity. Clements represents that part of the business class that worries that Texas will not always be Texas that liberals will give away the store and that corporate values of “efficiency,” hierarchical management, and competition will no longer dominate the state. By some measures, Clements is no longer in the mainstream of the business world. A study of campaign contributions published by the Dallas Morning News in October showed White with a fundraising edge in 15 of 19 professional and business groups. From July of 1985 through September of this year White collected at least $1,523,507 from real estate developers, to Clements’s $364,993; at least $96,500 from mortgage bankers, to Clements’s $1,500; and $86,750 from insurance executives, to Clements’s $53,000. In the oil and high tech industries Clements had the advantage, but not by great margins. Of course, some of this money came to White because he was the incumbent. But, as well, polls consistently showed he stood a good chance of losing the election. Probably nothing is less endearing in the eyes of ordinary folk than to see the governor hand in hand with bankers especially big bankers. Yet, Gov. White could hardly have been more solicitous when the state’s bankers came into this summer’s special session of the legislature asking for major changes to be made to strengthen their industry. There was no question the bankers were in trouble. Hard times in the oil industry and in agriculture had brought a record number of bank failures. Yet bankers were the only people in the WE SING OF CHULA SIMS Chula Sims has been for nearly five years one of those generous and unsung volunteers whom we have come to depend on at this enterprise. Having many years ago shunned debutante society in Corpus Christi, she came to Austin for the better life and in Austin she eventually came around to the old house on 7th and Nueces that used to be the home of the Observer. About the time Frances Barton, then the business manager, inherited from Frances responsibility for the Social Cause Calendar. She has been compiling every two weeks and usually on time that useful and familiar department of the magazine ever since. Chula had a baby four months after Frances did, and she remembers learning the special skill of doing the Calendar one-handed, the other arm being devoted to young Max. The Calendars kept coming out, and Max grew to learn about steps in the back stairwell of the Observer hOuse. To organizers around the state Chula may be known as the person who helps bring much-needed publicity to important events. To an editor she is just as much appreciated as one of those people who, though computer literate, knows how to prepare copy the oldfashioned way she has perfect command of standard copy-editing marks and proofreading symbols ; and without even having the blot of journalism school on her record. She claims she learned it all from Frances, who probably learned it from Ronnie. This year Chula has become full-time director of the Central America Resource Center. She had previously been working as co-director. Using the strange mathematics familiar to those in social cause work, she says what seemed like a job-and-a-half now seems like three. So she is passing responsibility for the Social Cause Calendar on to our energetic editorial assistant Kathleen Fitzgerald, who has been working with us in various capacities for a year and a half. Our many thanks to Chula Sims for her work, and to Kathleen for agreeing to carry it on. D.D. CONTENTS FEATURES 1 The Defeat of Mark White Dave Denison 5 Observations Ronnie Dugger 8 Beauford Defends the Income Tax Fred Schmidt 9 Texans Vote on the Arms Ra ce Ronnie Dugger 12 Nuclear Waste and Six Million Texans Betty Brink 13 The Education of Delbert Devin Pauline Robertson 16 Election ’86 Dave Denison Books and the Culture: 19 A Primer on the Debt Crisis Richard Ryan Afterword: 22 When Night Falls Ruperto Garcia THE TEXAS OBSERVER 3