Monday, October 29, 2012

This is Wherever Wednesday...Starting Up Again With a Bang! (And Giveaways!)



Do you remember the old "This is Wherever Wednesday" hosted over at A Budget Blond?   It's was a meme where the Budget Blond shared her "This is Grenada" moments, and invited others to share their own "This is..." moments from their city, state, town, or country.   I loved reading all the little quirky things the different places that made them unique.  It was like getting to tour the world every Wednesday.  And it was fun sharing my own "This is Texas!" experiences.

I asked her if she would mind if I started it up again here on Texifornia, and she graciously agreed!   "This is Wherever Wednesday" will be on the first Wednesday of every month, starting November 7th! 

To participate, just create a "This is.." post about where you live, and come link it up November 7th!.  You can grab a button over in my sidebar.

Not sure what to include in your post?  This post will give you the idea, or you can Just browse the old TIWWW here at Texifornia or over at Budget Blond to see some examples.

To celebrate the party starting up again I'll be giving away some fun souvenirs from Texas too!  I'm looking for some other bloggers to offer some souvenirs from their home-town too, and get some promotion for their blog in return.   If you're interested, click here. (This is something extra and NOT something you have to do to join the linky party). 



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Thanks to The Graphics Fairy for the map graphic!

Giveaways for Texifornians

Some giveaways I found of interest to Texifornians, Californians, and Texans.

(She can do any state...single state designs too)




If you have a giveaway with special appeal to Texans, Californians, or Texifornians, let me know and I'll post it here.  

Friday, October 26, 2012

Sky Watch Friday




You may noticed I edited out the basketball hoop in the first one, and I did a little editing to put the second two together, but I did not alter the colors at all. The sky really looked like that. Took my breath away.


Thursday, October 25, 2012

The Day the Texas State Fair Turned Into Burning Man

Big Tex Fire

 I'm a little late commenting on this. Most of you know that Big Tex burned to the ground last week. He died as he lived, with people standing in front of him taking pictures...

 Big Tex Fire 

If I'm a little tongue and cheek it's just because I've only seen the big guy once, and I don't share the connection that a lot of Texans do to Big Tex.  I know a lot of you grew up seeing Big Tex at the fair and I know he'll be missed.

Big Tex Will Be Missed

Thanks to VMR and graychr who shared these pictures on Flickr and under creative commons for others to use.

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Wildflower Wednesday - Goldenrod






These wild goldenrod are actually looking pretty gangly in my yard, and I'm in the process of cutting them down before they went to seed, but they sure look pretty up close, and attract some interesting insects...like the beauty above.  Never seen a bug colored like this before!  (Sue of A Corner Garden tells me it's a Ailanthus Moth ...and here I was thinking it was a beetle!)


You can check out more beautiful wildflowers, and link up your own wild finds at Wildflower Wednesday.  And you can find more bugs (and animals) at...


Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Texas Bloggers Vote! 2012 Linky Party!

Many people will be voting in the presidential election this year, but it's just as important to vote in state and local elections as in the "major" races. Early voting starts October 22, and Election Day (the last day to vote) is Nov 6. If you don't know who's running this November, candidates are listed here or you could use the form on Project Vote Smart to find them,  and you can find more info about voting in Texas here.

If you have a blog posts related to Texas politics or local elections, please share it in the linky below.  In the "name section" on the linky below please put either "statewide" or the city, county, or district which your post is related to.  After that you may put the post title or topic.  Please link directly to your blog post.


EXAMPLES

Dallas - How This Election Can Change Everything

District 17 - My Views on Flores

STATEWIDE - Why Voting Local Matters

Help spread the word about this event by posting the following button on your blog.  While it's not required, it sure is appreciated!







Why NOT to Vote Party Line



Voting in local and state races is important, because the people who are elected for School Board and Railroad Commissioner actually have a a big impact on our lives. 

Unfortunately, while people are often knowledgeable about the candidates for more prominent political offices like Senators and Govenors, many are less knowledgeable about other elected offices like Land Commissioner, Comptroller, and Judges, and being less knowledgeable voters often choose these candidates based on a single factor:  their party.  I have seen evidence of this in my own city, where year after year the "smaller" state and local positions are won by amazingly similar margins, a pattern not seen in the higher ranking positions.  You would expect that the margins would be drastically different in a race where the republican candidate had been tied to a financial scandal and was running against a highly qualified Democrat, and another where the Republican candidate was highly qualified for the job and the Democratic candidate had little experience related to the position, and a third race where two highly qualified candidates with nearly identical positions on the issues were running.  But in all of these races the Republican won by nearly the exact same margin.  This tells me these races were won due to straight party line voting. 

I've been a registered Republican since I could vote, so why does this concern me?  Here's why...

WHY NOT TO VOTE STRAIGHT PARTY LINE:
  • Candidates sometimes run for "minor" positions in hope that they can work their way up to more powerful political positions.  These candidates may not care very much about the position they're running for, or be very qualified it. But in districts that predominantly sway towards one party they can be elected entirely through party line votes.
  • Party line votes by uninformed voters can allow corrupt or inept incumbents to remain in office.  
  • Sometimes the reasons you support a specific party can be irrelevant to a positions.  For instance, you may usually vote Republican or Democrat because of your views on abortion, but some local positions (like Railroad Commissioner) have no bearing on that issue.  
  • You can't assume that because someone is running under as a Democrat or Republican or any other party that they uphold all the positions of that party.  You might find, if you researched, that another candidate is actually closer to your views on the issues most important to you. 
  • Minor races are one place where third party candidates have a better chance of winning, so if you would like to have more choices on who to vote for, this is the best place to give third party candidates a chance. 

I would love to hear what you think about voting straight party line!  Share your opinions below.  And if you have a blog post in any way related to Texas Politics, you can share it here.