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JULY 16, 2004 Texas Observer FEATURES LA LOTERIA MAS GRANDE The battle for presidential succesion in Mexico is never easy. But it’s getting weirder and weirder. by Barbara Belejack TEXAS HOLD’EM In hard-luck Montague County, slot machine operators hit the jackpot by Felix Gillette DEPARTMENTS DIALOGUE EDITORIAL Counterpunching POLITICAL INTELLIGENCE MOLLY IVINS A Plan for the Clueless JIM HIGHTOWER Giving the Gipper His Due BOOKS 6 THE CULTURE HOME-GROWN POLITICS by Jim Cullen POETRY by Patricia Clark PIONEERING A COLOR-BLIND SOCIETY by Robert Bonazzi INSIDE AN ALIENATED WORLD by Melissa Sattley A MORE MATURE MOORE by John DeFore AFTERWORD The Heart of It All by John Ross DIALOGUE ALL ABOUT AL You have absolutely captured the essence of what I’ve been passionately telling my friends for so long: “don’t be indoctrinated by talking heads in the media. Analyze the facts and history yourself?’ been my consistent message not only to my friends, but to those who claim to be “anti-Gore They are quick to point out his flaws. Why? Because it’s easy for talking heads to talk about his flaws. We aren’t looking for a comedian or the world’s greatest orator to become President. We are looking for a man who could inspire, and govern. Gore could do both. Your article was excellent, and the last line was just so tasteful. His enemies sure should “deconstruct that:’ I want the citizens of the United StatesDemocrats, but especially Republicansto read this. This man has had a bad rap for years. It’s an extension really, of the Clinton-hating philosophy. I met Gore once, and told him how he inspired me to get into politics. He is a wonderful man who deserved the office that he won. Regardless of how people talk about him, a majority of Americans were good enough to give him their vote. The 2000 election was a complete sham. And I am not a big Leftie, as the right-wingers say when describing their opposition. I’m willing to bet that Democrats will gain seats in the House and Senate, raise millions of dollars more, and win the Presidency. A Democratic era is coming, and it’s thanks to the Republicans. Nicholas E. Smith Inglewood, CA Thank you for this article. It seems harder and harder to find information, press or articles about this remarkable man these days. The harsh criticism of Al by the others is a sign that he is doing something right. There are many of us who wish each and every day that this elected president was in office. We feel hauntingly silenced as people go about their days and seemingly have moved on from the horrors of our “democracy death” in 2000. From the Supreme Court decision, to the role of Congress, to the silence of the Democratic party, to the horrors of this current administration. In the words of Michael Moore in Fahrenheit 9/11, “Was this all just a dream?” I have a quote that I would like to post with this message to you: “Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about the things that matter?’ \(Martin Sonja Boumenot Via e-mail I am the Chairperson of the PAC Patriots For Gore. We are a small group of Americans dedicated to restoring Al Gore to the Presidency and advocating for social issues, and I am writing to you today to thank you for your article on Al Gore’s speech in Tacoma, Washington. We have always seen the soul and caring of Al Gore, and have also been appalled at the biased and sometimes hateful media coverage his words receive. His speeches of late have spoken to the very essence of what we are as a nation, and what the Bush administration has totally destroyed at the expense of our dignity and our future. continued on page 16 4 6 2 3 12 14 15 Cover by Matt Lynaugh 2 THE TEXAS OBSERVER 7/16 /04 CONGRATULATIONS Congratulations to the following Observer contributors who received awards at the Assocation of Alternative Newsweekly Convention last month: Brenda Bell: “A Love Story,” March 28, 2003, Arts Feature, third place Alan Pogue: “Faces of Iraq,” February 28, 2003, Photography, second place. 20 21 22 24 26 30