Columns/Opinions

Wed
05
Dec
Edgar's picture

Long Gone

By LEE PITTS

You’ve worked, scrimped and saved to put together a ranch for your children only to learn that your kids want no part of the ranching lifestyle. This has created a shortage of slave labor on ranches that could lead to the decline of western civilization. So I’ve developed a little test to determine early on if your children want to come back home to the ranch or move to New York and become a ballet dancer. Please answer “yes” or “no” to the following questions.

(1) Does your son or daughter refuse to wear a cowboy hat and does he or she have a nose ring, tongue stud and a colorful collection of tattoos?

(2) Would you say your child prefers the music of Kanye, Jay-Z, Notorious Mr. Big, Snoop Dogg, Dr. Dre, Ice Cube, 50 Cent and Busta Rhymes over that of Kenny Chesney, Brad Paisley and Carrie Underwood?

 

Wed
05
Dec
Edgar's picture

A tight-fisted Texas Legislature with expensive ambitions

By ROSS RAMSEY

The Texas Legislature’s strong allergy to tax increases might be abating — just as long as you don’t call them tax increases.

They’re not saying so out loud — no point in riling up a price-sensitive electorate before the holidays, before the upcoming legislative session — or before lawmakers are ready to make their sales pitch.

But the talk of school finance as a top legislative priority guarantees a conversation about taxes. Texas property owners have made it clear to their representatives that they want lower property taxes.

 

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Wed
28
Nov
Edgar's picture

Hiring a virtual assistant for your business

BUSINESS TIPS

I first heard about virtual assistants a few years ago and as a business owner, I imagined some sort of automated voice message that forwarded calls or filtered messages. What I did find out was that virtual assistants are real people that work remotely for your business as independent contractors. They come with specific skills that can apply to a range of industries. My hesitation in using a virtual assistant is trust. As a small business owner, I tend to trust employees that I can train and develop a working relationship with. So trusting someone that I’ve never met is hard for me to do. However, I’ve learned that a virtual assistant that is vetted well can bring value and opportunities to your business.

Most small business owners suffer from having to wear several hats in their business.

Wed
28
Nov
Edgar's picture

Texas unemployment rate hits lowest level since 1976

STATE CAPITAL HIGHLIGHTS

AUSTIN — Texas has its lowest unemployment rate in more than 42 years.

The Texas Workforce Commission on Nov. 16 announced that Texas’ seasonally adjusted unemployment rate fell to 3.7 percent in October, down from 3.8 percent the prior month.

It is the lowest level of unemployment the state has seen since January 1976.

 

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Wed
21
Nov
Edgar's picture

Eminent domain: Are accountability, transparency and fairness too much to ask?

By CATTLEMAN'S COLUMN

 

 

As private property owners, we learned some tough lessons during the last Texas legislative session when we were not able to secure desperately needed reforms to the eminent domain process. Nonetheless, we are preparing to return with even greater resolve and have distilled our reform efforts to three main requests for the 86th Texas Legislature.

Accountability, transparency and fairness.

We hear time and again from property owners that they have been offered an outrageously low price for pipeline or transmission line easements across their land.

The Constitution states that property owners must be adequately compensated when their land is taken through eminent domain. Therefore, we believe the condemning entity must be held accountable for the initial offer they make.

Wed
14
Nov
Edgar's picture

Election results reveal larger than usual turnout

By Ed Sterling | Texas Press Association

 

AUSTIN — More than 8.3 million of Texas’ 15.8 million registered voters cast ballots in the Nov. 6 general election, as shown in results posted by the secretary of stat

e. The turnout of almost 53 percent was recognized widely as the highest in nearly 50 years for a Texas election without presidential candidates on the ballot. U.S. Rep. Robert Francis “Beto” O’Rourke, D-El Paso, garnered national attention in his quest to unseat U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Houston, but Cruz won the race with 4,244,204 votes (50.92 percent) to 4,024,777 (48.29 percent) for O’Rourke. Gov. Greg Abbott, a Republican, was re-elected to a second term. He received 4,638,532 million votes, which amounted to 55.83 percent of total votes cast.

Democratic challenger Lupe Valdez of Dallas received 3,528,705 million votes or 42.47 percent of the total vote.

 

Wed
14
Nov
Edgar's picture

Soup Strainers and Flavor Savers

By LEE PITTS

 

Have you ever noticed the obligatory five or six young men standing behind every Grand Champion steer or heifer at a major livestock show who were responsible for grooming the animal? While every hair is in place on the bovine the talented fellas responsible look like they just spent six months as roustabouts in northern Alaska without access to running water or shaving utensils.

They have so much facial hair one wonders if they go out in public does PETA throw paint on them thinking they’re wearing wool? Beards and mustaches are a generational thing. If you look at pictures of our Presidents you’ll see that only one or two of our Presidents up until Abe Lincoln had facial hair.

Wed
07
Nov
Edgar's picture

Small tactics to defend against cybersecurity attacks

By DAVE ERICKSON

We have all heard the words cybersecurity, but what does that really mean and how does it affect your business. Cybersecurity is the act of securing cyberspace. This includes working to protect internet-connected systems, including software, hardware, and data. As a small business owner, you probably rely heavily on your technology. Every aspect of your business can be affected by cybercrime. According to the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), the theft of digital information has become the most commonly reported fraud, surpassing physical theft.

 

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Wed
07
Nov
Edgar's picture

Riding With The Big Boys

By LEE PITTS

One of the best perks about being a cow writer has been that it served as a gateway to visit many of the biggest and best ranches in America. The highlight came when I got to sleep in the legendary Big House at the King Ranch and dine at a table whose centerpiece was a big silver bowl awarded in 1943 to the seventh Triple Crown winner in history, the King Ranch’s own Assault.

During a time when many cowboys are without cows and anyone with a good sized flower garden calls itself a “ranch”, I got to visit ranches in West Texas that were measured in sections, not acres, and anything less than 40 sections was considered a hobby farm.

 

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Tue
30
Oct
Edgar's picture

Big event coming up? Watch out for ticket scams

By HEATHER MASSEY

Whether you want to take in a baseball game, concert, or festival, be careful of ticket scams when you purchase online.

Unfortunately, some may be rip-offs and it’s not always clear how to tell if a ticket is fake. Last year, Better Business Bureau (BBB) received over 300 reports on BBB Scam Tracker about ticket scams related to sporting events, concerts, theaters, and more.

 

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