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Dialogue FROM A FED-UP GRANDMA Thanks for a solid piece of reporting on the DeLay TRMPAC case, and in particular, the role that Chris Feldman and Joe Crews played in getting this case before the courts [“Roadmap to a Scandal,” August 26]. It is encouraging, as we see signs of more and more Americans getting fed up and acting from a place of conscience. Cindy Sheehan certainly comes to mind. We must remember that one individual, acting wisely, can accomplish what the whole group of sitting Democrats has failed to do. My heartfelt thanks to these courageous individualsand to your paper for reporting fairly! Warmest regards from a fed-up Grandma in North Carolina! Becky Cope North Carolina ETHICALLY CHALLENGED I just read Lou Dubose’s article about the DeLay dinner \(“Follow the Leader,” sentatives who received money from DeLay’s PAC for their campaigns. Many of them turned around and donated thousands back to his defense fund. But doesn’t that seem like money laundering? I give you money donated to my PAC for your political campaign and you give part of it back to me for my defense fund. This is particularly true for Melissa Hart who is the lead on the Ethics Committee that SOMEDAY will investigate DeLay’s ethics \(an oxy$15,000 and returned $5,000. Only in an American Congress! Robert N. Horey Amherst; OH KEEP READING fiscal 2006 Commerce-Justice-Science appropriations bill, after spending a week using the legislation as a platform to argue about Congress’ response to Hurricane Katrina [“Katrina and You,” September 9] . The bill would appropriate a total of $48.9 billion, including $48.6 billion in discretionary spending. That is $884 million more than fiscal 2005 and $1.7 billion more than President Bush’s budget request, according to the Senate Appropriations Committee. The totals DO NOT include $4.3 billion added to the bill that was designated “emergency spending” related to Katrina. The federal budget has already become bloated by Pork Barrel Projects within the Highway Funding bill and other appropriations Congress passed before Hurricane Katrina. We must hold Congress accountable for their actions. They cannot continue spending at their current pace, or the next disaster we face will be financial. Steve Harris Waco OCTOBER 7, 2005 TheTexas Observer FEATURES KEEPING THE TRADITION ALIVE 6 The Texas Civil Rights Project turns 15. An interview with TCRP Director James Harrington. by Barbara Belejack MEET THE FUNDIES 8 Here are a few of the Texans who are bringing Christian Fundamentalism into state politics by Steve Satterwhite DEPARTMENTS DIALOGUE 2 EDITORIAL 3 The Public Square POLITICAL INTELLIGENCE 4 MOLLY IVINS 14 Plain Vanilla vs. The Hammer JIM HIGHTOWER 15 Invading your Library Records COMMENTARY 16 Muckraker Katrina by Andrew Wheat LAS AMERICAS 18 `Make Levees, Not War’ by Gabriela Bocagrande BOOKS & CULTURE POETRY 21 by Albert Haley FURTHER TRIBULATIONS OF JOB 24 by Steven G. Kellman YHE DIN OF INEQUITY 26 by Lou Dubose AFTERWORD 29 A Universe of Stories by Abe Louise Young Cover photo by Steve Satterwhite. 2 THE TEXAS OBSERVER OCTOBER 7, 2005