U.S. Congress

  • Blogs

    September 2, 2014

    Welcome to Country Music Time Machine

    Country music has an interesting relationship with current events. Unlike other forms of pop that deal with one form of fantasy or another -- starlets forever falling in love with that guy who is just out of reach; aspiring rappers' dreams of a ghetto-fabulous lifestyle, for example -- country draw ... More >>

  • Blogs

    July 30, 2014

    Five Texas Politicians Who Should Have Palin-style Internet Shows

    We all thought Sarah Palin would be focused on seizing the White House, but this week she announced that she is seizing the internet. Carpe diem! Or something. Yep, the lovable former Alaska governor and infamous vice presidential candidate is offering herself up to the world via the Internet. You ... More >>

  • Blogs

    June 11, 2014

    Behind Culberson, Federal Funding for METRO Blocked

    A debate on Houston transit was settled Tuesday, mostly by people who don't live here. The U.S. House of Representatives passed a transportation spending bill for fiscal 2015 Tuesday, 229-192, cutting off funding for METRO's proposed University Line in the process. Rep. John Culberson, R-Houston ... More >>

  • Blogs

    February 12, 2014

    Rankings Are Out: How Texas's Members of Congress Fared

    The National Journal's newest rankings are out. What the NJ does is determine who the most conservative/liberal/moderate senators and representatives are (it's a non-partisan D.C. magazine). Let's see where Texas's elected officials rank. We'll start with the two esteemed senators: Cruz and Cornyn ... More >>

  • Blogs

    November 20, 2013

    Five More Musical Texas Politicians

    In this week's Houston Press cover story, you can read about Kinky Friedman's completely serious campaign to become Texas' next Agriculture Commissioner in the November 2014, a position he hopes will allow him to be the state's leading advocate for marijuana legalization. This is not the first time ... More >>

  • Blogs

    November 4, 2013

    Rep. Steve Stockman Somehow Renews His Tim Fleck Feud

    Tim Fleck, a former reporter for the Houston Press and KTRH before moving to the editorial board of the Houston Chronicle, had a somewhat odd relationship with Steve Stockman, an occasionally successful GOP candidate for the U.S. House. At various times events involved sheriff's deputies and a laws ... More >>

  • News

    October 10, 2013

    Loving Obamacare

    Despite glitches, Houstonians flock to sign up to be covered by the new insurance plans.

  • News

    July 11, 2013

    A Fixer-Upper

    West sues fertilizer company while Senate cries phooey on EPA, wants changes.

  • Blogs

    July 4, 2013

    Want To Lose Your Gun? Come To Texas, Study Says

    It's pretty darn well known around here that most Texans love their guns. If you're from Texas, it's a fair bet that you can boast at least one relative who basically owns an arsenal that would be enough firepower to defend a small country, if the need arose. Earlier this year a University of Texas ... More >>

  • Blogs

    June 19, 2013

    Perry Wants to Save Water, Keep the Railroad Commission Unreformed

    After all of the hubbub that surrounded the passing of the state water plan, Gov. Rick Perry signed some water conservation legislation into law last Friday with nary a ripple in the political waters. Water companies will have to audit water lines to check for leaks that could be losing water, and ... More >>

  • Blogs

    June 19, 2013

    NASA's New Astronauts: Half Women, None Alive for the Moon Landing

    There was a generation of kids who grew up idolizing the astronauts. The men of the Mercury missions, the Apollo crews -- the guys who risked everything, put it all on the line to beat the Russians and launch into outer space. John Glenn, Alan Shepard, Neil Armstrong -- these guys were national he ... More >>

  • Blogs

    September 13, 2012

    Six HPD Officers To Be Honored By Governor For Above-And-Beyond Services Rendered

    Governor Rick Perry will honor six Houston police officers tomorrow for the service they gave the public, service that left them wounded from gunshots or other actions. The officers will receive the Star of Texas Award, which "were created to honor and commemorate selected first responders who made ... More >>

  • Blogs

    August 27, 2012

    Rick Perry Has Message For Schools: Tea Party Favorite Michael WIlliams To Head TEA

    Governor Rick Perry didn't go safe and sound when picking a new commissioner of the Texas Education Agency -- instead he's installed bomb-throwing Tea Party favorite Michael Williams. The former Railroad Commission chair has been nosing around a few political options in the past couple of years -- ... More >>

  • Blogs

    June 19, 2012

    Parental Advisory! Another Look at the PMRC's "Dirty 15"

    In 1985, the Parental Music Resource Center was formed as basically a watchdog group over popular music. Essentially, their goal was censorship. However, there was one big problem: The group was made up of the likes of Tipper Gore (wife of then-Senator and future Vice President Al Gore), Susan Bake ... More >>

  • Blogs

    May 16, 2012

    Louisiana Senate Votes to Beg Roger Goodell to Unsuspend Saints Players and Coaches

    Let me preface what I am about to say by noting that I love the State of Louisiana. I don't think I've ever had a bad trip to the state. It's one of my favorite places to visit, complete with otherworldly cuisine, ultra-accessible alcohol and gambling, and unintentional comedy galore. In short, I a ... More >>

  • Blogs

    May 15, 2012

    The Delicious Madness Of Ted Cruz's GOP Senate Campaign Ads

    All of Texas is feeling the excitement of the GOP primary for the U.S. Senate. It's really all that Texans are talking about, apart from everything and anything else. Lt. Governor David Dewhurst, a bland and boring pol, is facing Ted Cruz, a Tea Partier who has been endorsed by Sarah Palin. (The Te ... More >>

  • Blogs

    February 20, 2012

    7 Little-Known (And Completely Unverified) Facts About U.S. Presidents

    Today, the nation celebrates Presidents' Day, the most important holiday of all time. No other national holiday has such a clear purpose or overall popularity. Therefore, why not recognize this momentous occasion with a look back at some of our greatest presidents, and learn some facets of their bio ... More >>

  • Culture

    February 16, 2012
  • Blogs

    January 20, 2012

    Craig James for Senate: To Know Him Is to Not Like Him, Polls Say

    A new poll for Texas's open U.S. Senate seat has bad news for Houston's Craig James, former SMU star and ESPN analyst. Most people don't know the guy. Those that do, don't like him. James had the biggest gap between "favorable" and "unfavorable" ratings, a whopping 15 percent. Two-thirds of those ... More >>

  • Blogs

    December 20, 2011

    Why We Love to Hate the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Control Commission

    Image via Westerville Public Libary (Westerville, Ohio).To understand our state's peculiar relationship with alcohol, we need to look back to the early post-Prohibition era when the TABC was founded (1935).​In the wake of a recent post on the absurdity of wine shipping regulation in Texas, a c ... More >>

  • Blogs

    December 13, 2011

    ESPN's Craig James to Run for U.S. Senate In Texas

    The next senator from Texas?​Great news if you're a fan of inept political campaigns, or if you just want less awful announcing on your TV. Craig James, ESPN college football analyst who was personally involved in two ugly college football scndals of varying degrees, is running to replace Kay ... More >>

  • Blogs

    July 12, 2011

    You Won't Have Ron Paul to Kick Around Anymore (Unless He Wins the White House)

    Ron, we hardly knew ye.​Will the U.S. be able to survive without Ron Paul in the House of Representatives? We're about to find out. Paul's district newspaper, the Brazosport Facts, reports today that Paul will not seek re-election after almost a quarter-century in Congress. Instead, the 75-y ... More >>

  • News

    June 9, 2011
  • Blogs

    June 3, 2011

    Life After Rock Stardom: 7 Artists' Post-Musical Careers

    naylandhouse.comFuture ordained minister MC Hammer wasn't kidding on his 1990 hit single "Pray."​Let's face it. Not everyone is cut out for - or interested in - being a sixtysomething rock star. But what type of careers awaits a retired musician? Many rock stars stay in the music industry real ... More >>

  • Blogs

    April 28, 2011

    Legislative Victory for Texas Beer

    kMatherlyCheers indeed. Local breweries celebrate a win in the House of Representatives.Just as we were bemoaning the huge, wet bite the IRS took out of our savings account, along comes an example of tax dollars being put to good use. On April 21 the office of State Representative Jessica Farrar (D, ... More >>

  • Culture

    March 10, 2011
  • Blogs

    January 10, 2011

    Tom DeLay Gets Jail Time

    The Hammer gets the slammer​Tom DeLay's sentence has been handed out, and it's not a slap on the wrist: He's going to prison for three years with no probation on the conspiracy charges. DeLay was also sentenced by judge Pat Priest to 10 years' probation on a money-laundering charge, according ... More >>

  • Blogs

    December 31, 2010

    Top Ten Celebrities This Decade Who Crashed and Burned with Video Evidence

    And a partridge in a pear tree...​Last week, we gave you our list of celebrities who manage to save their careers after difficult times. This week, we go a different direction. If we have learned anything from TMZ, it's that people love celebrity scandals and the more salacious it is, the more ... More >>

  • Blogs

    December 21, 2010

    Just What America Needs: Four More Texas Votes In The U.S. House Of Representatives

    Texas is a big winner​Republicans in the Texas Legislature have already been salivating over the opportunity to redraw Congressional districts with little to no interference from those annoying Democrats. The U.S. Census just handed them another gift: Four more seats to mess with. A 20 perce ... More >>

  • Blogs

    November 11, 2010

    DJ Premier: A Pillar Of Hip-Hop History

    ​Maybe it's leaving behind our twenties and embracing our thirties, but we've been so concerned with the past lately... history, that is. We've been talking to our grandmother in the last few months about her life as a young child growing up on the Texas border. You truly don't know someone b ... More >>

  • Blogs

    October 22, 2010

    Voodoo Lady: Christine O'Donnell's Halloween Playlist

    ​Christine O'Donnell's "I Am Not a Witch" ad gave us truckloads of comedy during a rather boring election season. Thanks to that unintentionally hilarious ad and the upcoming election, Christine has been on our minds lately. To better understand what drives the Teabag candidate, we stole her ... More >>

  • Blogs

    September 17, 2010

    Sheila Jackson Lee Fares Badly, As Usual, On "Best & Worst Of Congress" List

    Sheila Jackson Lee: You call the woman who honored MIchael Jackson a "Show Horse"?​Wanna know the inside skinny on your U.S. Congress members?Every election year, Washingtonian magazine gets Capitol Hill staffers to dish on their bosses and rank them from best to worst. And as you might expect, r ... More >>

  • News

    September 16, 2010

    Beauty School Dropouts

    HISD might close cosmetology program.

  • Blogs

    September 9, 2010

    Greenpeace Says Dow's Freeport Chemical Plant Has Lousy Security

    You won't be smiling when the leak comes​Think all those toxic chemicals stockpiled at industrial plants around Houston are safe and secure? Well, think again.According to Greenpeace, the giant holding tanks and railroad cars full full of hazardous materials are ripe for disaster -- be it by terro ... More >>

  • Blogs

    June 2, 2010

    I Wanna Be Your Dog (Or Cat): The Name Of This Blog Is I Wanna Be Your Dog (Or Cat)

    Hair Balls was glad to learn that one of our musical heroes, David Byrne, is taking on The Man; namely, Florida Governor Charlie Crist, for using the Talking Heads song "Road to Nowhere" in his U.S. Senate campaign without permission. (Crist is running as an independent, but historically has belonge ... More >>

  • Film

    May 6, 2010

    Built to Last

    Iron Man 2 will lead to 3 and probably 4, but that doesn't mean it's good.

  • Film

    February 18, 2010

    Out of the Past

    Stuck in the asylum with Martin Scorsese — head-trip Shutter Island is the good kind of insane.

  • News

    February 18, 2010

    Teen Porn 101

    If they're taking their laptops and cell phones to bed with them, it's probably not to do homework.

  • News

    November 26, 2009

    Turkeys of the Year

    In a highly competitive 2009 field, Governor Rick Perry is the biggest gobbler of them all.

  • Blogs

    January 28, 2009

    Artist of the Week: The Sans-Bayonet

    Each Wednesday, Rocks Off arbitrarily appoints one lucky local performer or group "Artist of the Week," bestowing upon them all the fame and grandeur such a lofty title implies. Know a band or artist that isn't awful? Email their particulars to It was recently menti ... More >>

  • Blogs

    January 26, 2009

    The Web Conducts Yet Another Calm, Reasonable Discussion

    The Houston Chronicle reported today that the burgeoning problem of jail overcrowding may be dealt with by releasing low-risk offenders. They are also, as we mentioned today, eventually creating a mental-health court that will aim to treat the ill instead of simply repeatedly sending them to jail.Th ... More >>

  • Blogs

    December 12, 2008

    Campaign Finance Shenanigans -- Maybe Fiction, Maybe Not

    With the recent news of Barack Obama's record-breaking $750 million campaign fundraising efforts, it's an interesting time to release a novel about greed and deception in the field of political moneymaking. Especially if you, the author, were part of the team that helped secure Obama's three-quarter ... More >>

  • Calendar

    December 11, 2008

    The Candidate Conspiracy author John Odam

    This Texas lawyer/novelist uses experience in campaign finance to keep you on the edge of your reading glasse

  • Blogs

    November 3, 2008

    Gloom And Doom For Uninsured Texas Children

    There are two solutions to help the population of uninsured children in Texas, according to a Houston pediatrician: Pray for change or move to Canada. That's overstating it a bit, but Dr. Ana Malinow, a pediatrician and co-founder of the advocacy group Healthcare for All Texas, tells Hair Balls that ... More >>

  • News

    August 14, 2008
  • Blogs

    November 27, 2007

    Miss MASH: Dr. Michael E. DeBakey Awarded Congressional Gold Medal

    Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison sends over missives on a pretty regular basis - Senator Kay did this, Senator Kay did that. They are usually pretty boring. Today’s press release details the fact that Senator Kay presented Dr. Michael E. DeBakey with the signed bill she pushed through Congress awardin ... More >>

  • News

    May 31, 2007

    Border Fence May Destroy Wildlife Habitat

    U.S. Fish and Wildlife services spent $80 million to reclaim wildlife habitat in South Texas. Now Homeland Security is ready to wipe that out.

  • Blogs

    October 31, 2006

    Hell to the Chief!

    Photos by Steven Devadanam for HouStoned Images Ltd., Ulmtd. A multi-tasking protestor denounces prison torture while modeling an excellent Halloween costume. As you know, the Leader of the Free World held court at the Sugar Land Regional Airport yesterday, stumping for one Shelley Sekula-Gibbs ... More >>

  • News

    June 24, 2004
  • News

    February 22, 2001

    Like It's 1999

    A not-exactly-original idea (at 7 a.m., 4, 5 and 10 p.m.)

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