Patterico's Pontifications

2/18/2021

Texas Senator Cruzes To Cancun During Deadly Storm

Filed under: General — Dana @ 9:11 am



[guest post by Dana]

As Texas is being slammed by a massive winter storm, many residents have been without power for days during a week of sub-freezing temperatures. Reports point out that the state did not heed the warnings of experts to winterize equipment, and many of the state’s power companies opted not to spend the extra money to do so. This morning, power is being slowly restored. The problems continue to compound as many state residents are now facing food shortages as supplies have dwindled, and a shortage of potable water has forced residents to boil their water before use:

Over 2 million Texans have regained power since Wednesday morning after energy providers say they made significant progress in remedying days-long outages overnight, but many of the state’s residents are still struggling without access to power, food and water.

The total number of Texas customers without power reached just above 500,000 Thursday morning—down from over 2.7 million Wednesday—the lowest since widespread outages began early Monday, according to PowerOutage.US.

Austin’s energy utility said 81,000 customers remain without power Thursday morning (down from 220,000 earlier this week), while CenterPoint, which services Houston, said just 2% of its customers (46,000) still don’t have power.

The state is still struggling amid the freezing temperatures and millions of Texans are advised to boil water before drinking as water levels remain dangerously low. Power and water disruptions led to the evacuation of multiple hospitals across Texas on Wednesday evening, including a pediatric hospital in Austin. Local officials are urging residents to conserve power and water. “Top priorities are hospitals and fire hydrants,” Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner said Thursday morning. The storm has also impacted food supply, with multiple local reports on Wednesday detailing empty grocery stores and food pantries struggling to reach residents due to the weather.

While Texas struggles through the weather crisis on top of a pandemic and desperate residents try to cope with the disaster, one would expect that an all-hands-on-deck effort would be made by state leaders. Sadly, it would be foolish to expect that, as Sen. Ted Cruz demonstrated:

Sen. Ted Cruz flew to Cancun, Mexico, with his family this week as Texas dealt with a winter storm that as of Thursday still has left 500,000 without power, Fox News has confirmed.

Photographs of Cruz, R-Texas, at an airport began circulating on social media late Wednesday, with people alleging that the senator had left the state for Cancun amid a major crisis. A Republican source told Fox News that the allegations Cruz was traveling to the Mexican city are true.

“The photos speak for themselves,” the source said.

As reminder, Cruz was one of a number of Republican officials who mocked the state of California when a massive heatwave resulted in widespread power outages:

Untitled

His response to his state’s disastrous power failure during this week’s storm? Eh:

Not only are the optics terrible, but knowing that an elected official flew the coop during a weather disaster of Herculean proportions is an affront to every resident of the state. Will voters remember this in 2022?

Anyway, Cruz must’ve felt the blowback because he is flying back home today.

Patterico’s Pontifications has a number of readers in Texas. Our prayers for Patterico’s family members there, Dustin and his family, Gawain’s Ghost, DRJ and her family, and Beldar. My apologies to anyone whose name I have forgotten to mention.

Here are ways that you can help out our friends in Texas.

–Dana

196 Responses to “Texas Senator Cruzes To Cancun During Deadly Storm”

  1. I didn’t even mention that time when Cruz mocked California’s Gov. Newsom for breaking COVID protocols…

    Dana (fd537d)

  2. Cruz has had a tough last couple of months….he probably does need a vacation to re-assess. He probably can’t restart a power plant or repair weather damaged equipment…but he should understand optics. One can empathize if this was a long-planned family trip….let’s remember he’s got lots of kids and is actually human. He’s already lost him as a supporter…and has a lot of work to get me back….so it’s difficult to lose me more….

    AJ_Liberty (ec7f74)

  3. Cruz has two school-aged daughters. While I’m sure his family would love a family trip to relax and perhaps, reassess, so too would many military families but because of the duties that come with service, they are unable to.

    Dana (fd537d)

  4. What is also obscene is the partisan attack on renewable energy, as if that is the sole cause of the crisis. The fact is that:

    Failures across Texas’ natural gas operations and supply chains due to extreme temperatures are the most significant cause of the power crisis that has left millions of Texans without heat and electricity during the winter storm sweeping the U.S.
    ……
    Officials for the Electric Reliability Council of Texas, which manages most of Texas’ grid, said the primary cause of the outages Tuesday appeared to be the state’s natural gas providers. Many are not designed to withstand such low temperatures on equipment or during production.

    By some estimates, nearly half of the state’s natural gas production has screeched to a halt due to the extremely low temperatures, while freezing components at natural gas-fired power plants have forced some operators to shut down.

    “Texas is a gas state,” said Michael Webber, an energy resources professor at the University of Texas at Austin. While he said all of Texas’ energy sources share blame for the power crisis — at least one nuclear power plant has partially shut down, most notably — the natural gas industry is producing significantly less power than normal.
    ……
    More than half of ERCOT’s winter generating capacity, largely powered by natural gas, was offline due to the storm, an estimated 45 gigawatts, according to Dan Woodfin, a senior director at ERCOT.
    …….
    It’s estimated that about 80% of the grid’s capacity, or 67 gigawatts, could be generated by natural gas, coal and some nuclear power. Only 7% of ERCOT’s forecasted winter capacity, or 6 gigawatts, was expected to come from various wind power sources across the state.
    …….
    Production of natural gas in the state has plunged, making it difficult for power plants to get the fuel necessary to run the plants. Natural gas power plants usually don’t have very much fuel storage on site, experts said. Instead, the plants rely on the constant flow of natural gas from pipelines that run across the state from areas like the Permian Basin in West Texas to major demand centers like Houston and Dallas.
    ……
    The systems that get gas from the earth aren’t properly built for cold weather. Operators in West Texas’ Permian Basin, one of the most productive oil fields in the world, are particularly struggling to bring natural gas to the surface, analysts said, as cold weather and snow close wells or cause power outages that prevent pumping the fossil fuels from the ground.
    ……
    Texas does not have as much storage capacity as other states, experts said, because the resource-laden state can easily pull it from the ground when it’s needed — usually.

    Of the storage that the state does have, the resources are somewhat difficult to get to. Luke Jackson, another natural gas analyst for S&P Global Platts, said that physically withdrawing stored natural gas is slower than the immediate, ready supply of lines from production and is insufficient to make up for the dramatic declines in production.
    ……..

    Source
    Related:

    Perry says Texans willing to suffer blackouts to keep feds out of power market

    Former Texas governor Rick Perry suggests that going days without power is a sacrifice Texans should be willing to make if it means keeping federal regulators out of the state’s power grid.

    In a blog posted on House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy’s website, Perry is quoted responding to the claim that “those watching on the left may see the situation in Texas as an opportunity to expand their top-down, radical proposals.”

    “Texans would be without electricity for longer than three days to keep the federal government out of their business,” Perry is quoted as saying. “Try not to let whatever the crisis of the day is take your eye off of having a resilient grid that keeps America safe personally, economically, and strategically.”

    Texas’s power grid, run by the Electric Reliability Council of Texas, or ERCOT, occupies a unique distinction in the United States in that it does not cross state lines and thus is not under the oversight of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission.

    That has long been a point of pride with Texas politicians who in the 2000s chose to deregulate the state’s power market and allow power companies, not state regulators, determine when and how to build and maintain power plants.

    That system has fallen under scrutiny in recent days as millions of Texans are left without power following an unusual cold snap. Following a near identical episode a decade ago, federal regulators warned Texas it needed to take steps to better insulate its power plants.
    ……..
    While I appreciate the suffering of individual Texans, the arrogance of their politicians during the crisis is astounding. Marie Antoinette would be proud.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  5. Another example of their “let them eat cake” attitude:

    Colorado City mayor resigns, responds to his controversial Facebook post

    (Mayor Tim) Boyd acknowledged the resignation Tuesday afternoon while responding to criticism he received for a controversial Facebook post.

    Tuesday morning, Boyd voiced his frustrations about residents who he said called him to complain about power and water outages.

    “If you don’t have electricity, you step up and come up with a game plan to keep your family warm and safe,” Boyd said. “Get off your ass and take care of your own family!”
    …….
    Tuesday afternoon, Boyd posted another message.

    “I would never want to hurt the elderly or anyone that is in true need of help to be left to fend for themselves,” said Boyd. “I was only making the statement that those folks that are too lazy to get up and fend for themselves but are capable should not be dealt a handout. I apologize for the wording and some of the phrases that were used!”
    …….
    Full text from original post:

    No one owes you or your family anything; nor is it the local governments responsibility to support you during trying times like this! Sink or swim, it’s your choice! The City and County, along with power providers or any other service owes you NOTHING!

    I’m sick and tired of people looking for a d*mn hand out! If you don’t have electricity you step up and come up with a game plan to keep your family warm and safe. If you have no water you deal with out and think outside of the box to survive and supply water to your family. If you were sitting at home in the cold because you have no power and are sitting there waiting for someone to come rescue you because your lazy is direct result of your raising! Only the strong will survive and the week (sic) will perish.

    Folks, God Has given us the tools to support ourselves in times like this. This is sadly a product of a socialist government where they feed people to believe that the FEW work and others will become dependent for handouts. Am I sorry that you have been dealing without electricity and water; yes! But I’ll be damned if I’m going to provide for anyone that is capable of doing it themselves! We have lost sight of those in need and those that take advantage of the system and mesh them into one group!! Bottom line, quit crying and looking for a handout! Get off your ass and take care of your own family!

    Bottom line – DON’T BE A PART OF A PROBLEM, BE A PART OF THE SOLUTION!

    ……..

    Paragraph breaks added for clarity.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  6. Good to see Chavez is returning to Venezuela…

    Hoi Polloi (139bf6)

  7. I’m in TX. My wife is pissed at Cruz but I’m not.

    He’s not a state official and I’m not sure what I want him doing. Lobbying Congress for disaster aid maybe? I have no problem with him doing that from Cancun.

    That said the optics are terrible and I would think a longtime politician would know better.

    Also, side note, our family is very lucky to have only lost power for 1 hour. No water but we have plenty and are not the least bit worried.

    nate (1f1d55)

  8. I’m in TX. My wife is pissed at Cruz but I’m not.

    He’s not a state official and I’m not sure what I want him doing. Lobbying Congress for disaster aid maybe? I have no problem with him doing that from Cancun.

    That said the optics are terrible and I would think a longtime politician would know better.

    Also, side note, our family is very lucky to have only lost power for 1 hour. No water but we have plenty and are not the least bit worried.

    nate (1f1d55) — 2/18/2021 @ 9:58 am

    I’m glad you’re doing OK. In an emergency ‘constituent services’ can be a big deal. community coming together to help people who need it is also a big deal.

    Here are things he can
    -Amplify messages about how to help and to get help.
    -Lobby for aid and donation (generators etc) from other states.
    -Use his network to organize people to reach out to seniors and other’s who are at risk (https://act.betoorourke.com/event/welfare-check-phone-bank/34627) If this think Beto is doing (my daughter and i are going to give it a shot) is useful he could point people to that. Or set up something similar of his own.

    Bottom line, he could have done something and he chose not to.

    Time123 (dba73f)

  9. Probably better to let him stay there. The only thing he’s good for is stoking resentment and modeling hilariously fake-redneck fashion.

    john (cd2753)

  10. What does it matter if a state’s Senator is out of town during a statewide crisis? Optics, perhaps, but it’s not like he’s governor, or even a state legislator. I guess it’s easy for people to take shots at everyone they don’t like over optics, but there are far more important issues at hand and this crap just sucks all the air out of the room.

    Kevin M (ab1c11)

  11. This is on the power companies and/or their regulators. The cost of this kind of failure should hang over utilities like the Sword of Damocles, so that their boards don’t allow cost-cutting in critical areas.

    PG&E in northern CA has a history of this kind of myopia. They’ve been surprised by trees falling on power lines since forever. I live in Silicon Valley for a couple of years and the first week I was there, they lost power for a week and a similar cascade (power, then water, then heat…) happened, all because they saved money on maintaining their rights-of-way.

    Rule: Any month a customer’s power is out for more than 24 hours due to a utility fault, that customer’s electricty is free for that month.

    Kevin M (ab1c11)

  12. @10-
    He could be meeting with Federal officials, lobbying for emergency assistance, etc.

    In politics, optics is everything.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  13. *I liveD (30 years ago) in Silicon Valley…

    Kevin M (ab1c11)

  14. What does it matter if a state’s Senator is out of town during a statewide crisis? Optics, perhaps, but it’s not like he’s governor, or even a state legislator. I guess it’s easy for people to take shots at everyone they don’t like over optics, but there are far more important issues at hand and this crap just sucks all the air out of the room.

    Kevin M (ab1c11) — 2/18/2021 @ 10:19 am

    He’s a leader in the state. He has people’s attention and in some cases trust. He could use that in a lot of useful ways that i listed in 8.

    Here’s more; he could have his staff find opportunities to help and then highlight those. If there’s a BSA troop going around handing out blankets, if there’s a church that has warm food that people could go to. All of those things make a real difference.

    To say nothing of the funding he could drive by going on Fox.

    Time123 (cd2ff4)

  15. He could be meeting with Federal officials, lobbying for emergency assistance, etc.

    Like John McCain rushing back to DC to help with the stock meltdown? What a boob he was doing that.

    What help can a lawyer give to getting the power back up?

    Kevin M (ab1c11)

  16. Seems like I struck a nerve.

    Kevin M (ab1c11)

  17. @10-
    He could be meeting with Federal officials, lobbying for emergency assistance, etc.

    In politics, optics is everything.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8) — 2/18/2021 @ 10:24 am

    NO. This is driving me nuts. There are real things *any* competent adult could do. He could do them with staff support and the weight of his office behind him.

    To say nothing of oversight and red tape issue he could help solve just by having common sense questions come from a senator.

    Time123 (cd2ff4)

  18. It sucks all the oxygen out of the room. Look at us here, instead of talking about why power companies should be required to take care of business, we are talking about political optics of someone who had NOTHING to do with the problems involved.

    Cruz didn’t even vote for laws that redirected power company resources into new directions. If he couled be faulted for anything, it would be for opposing solar tax credits, but even houses with solar are dark due to the way utilities demand they be that way when the rest of the system is unpowered.

    Kevin M (ab1c11)

  19. What help can a lawyer give to getting the power back up?

    As I and others have pointed out, he is a political leader in Texas (who barely won reelection). You think he would demonstrate he cares about his voters, especially after his sordid performance on January 6th.

    The only nerve you struck is your ignorance of retail politics.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  20. Seems like I struck a nerve.

    Kevin M (ab1c11) — 2/18/2021 @ 10:27 am

    You absolutely did. The mindset that if you’re not a government official there’s nothing you can do is silly. Our country was built by people coming together to build down and communities. Absolving elected officials because something isn’t in their job description bugs me. When low % crisis happen we need all hands on deck. This is double true for the people who are supposedly leaders.

    Friend of mine is a college professor in Texas. It’s not in his job description but he reached out to every student in his class to make sure they were OK and that they knew how to get in touch with the resources available to help them if they needed it. He said he was able to do it quickly because he already had ways to contact them and since he was their teacher he knew they’d answer the phone/read the email.

    If you’ve ever been in a crisis situation you know things like this help.

    Time123 (cd2ff4)

  21. Cruz didn’t even vote for laws…..

    Yeah, that’s a great excuse for going to Cancun.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  22. It sucks all the oxygen out of the room. Look at us here, instead of talking about why power companies should be required to take care of business, we are talking about political optics of someone who had NOTHING to do with the problems involved.

    Cruz didn’t even vote for laws that redirected power company resources into new directions. If he couled be faulted for anything, it would be for opposing solar tax credits, but even houses with solar are dark due to the way utilities demand they be that way when the rest of the system is unpowered.

    Kevin M (ab1c11) — 2/18/2021 @ 10:32 am

    I have 50$ to this https://freelunchatx.com/contribute.

    If you’re worried about ‘sucking oxygen out of the room’ and have the resources consider this or something like it. If you have time you can help call on seniors.

    There are things you can do that will help.

    Time123 (cd2ff4)

  23. Face it Rip, if he wore white after Labor Day, you’d be on his ass because, well, you hate him. This kind of tribal warfare is noxious.

    Kevin M (ab1c11)

  24. If Cruz made his travel arrangements after is was known the storm was going to be this bad, then I would join others in voicing displeasure in his plans to make good his own escape. But if his plans were already made as well in advance as most make their plans, then I hold him harmless.

    Sure, it would have been awesome if he had sent his family off and remained behind, but make no mistake; his actions would have been mocked by his detractors as virtue signaling and pure optics. Only his supporters would have given him credit. It is my view that Cruz should have stayed with his family. Partisanship does not disappear, even in the face of suffering, when self is loved above neighbor. Of this, we are all guilty; Cruz, too.

    felipe (630e0b)

  25. Face it Rip, if he wore white after Labor Day, you’d be on his ass because, well, you hate him. This kind of tribal warfare is noxious.

    Kevin M (ab1c11) — 2/18/2021 @ 10:37 am

    You contribution to this is to complain that people are being too mean to the political figure that you like. Not because you think he isn’t getting enough credit for what he’s done, but because you think it’s fine that he’s done nothing and went on vacation.

    Time123 (dba73f)

  26. “This kind of tribal warfare is noxious.”

    Cruz is a banner carrier is this kind of tribal warfare. He’s being called out because he’s a hypocrite, not because of some hypothetical benefit he could have provided.

    Davethulhu (6ba00b)

  27. Face it Rip, if he wore white after Labor Day, you’d be on his ass because, well, you hate him. This kind of tribal warfare is noxious.

    I don’t have any feelings about Cruz’s fashion sense, but it’s his hypocrisy (and arrogance) that I can’t stand. I feel the same way about politicians breaking their own Covid-19 protocols. They all do Marie Antoinette proud.

    How would you react if Newsom went to Hawaii during a devastating forest fire or earthquake? “Oh he didn’t set the fire or cause the earthquake, so let him go.” Right.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  28. “If Cruz made his travel arrangements after is was known the storm was going to be this bad, then I would join others in voicing displeasure in his plans to make good his own escape.”

    Based on a statement released by Cruz, the travel arrangements were made after the storm.

    Davethulhu (6ba00b)

  29. I’ve been thinking about why this bother’s me.

    I like small government. For small government to work, we need a society where people do more when unusual events happen. Not everyone will step up and I think it’s fair to criticize leaders who don’t.

    What bothers me about the defense of Ted Cruz by people who say things like “he’s not an electrical engineer’ or ‘he doesn’t run the power plant’ or ‘he’s not the governor’ is that it implies that only the official representatives of the state have a legitimate role to play. It’s an inherently big government argument that reinforces the message that individuals can’t come together to help and that we should all wait patiently while the bureaucracy does it’s assigned tasks.

    I want leaders who look at a problem and say “It’s on me to do what i can” and then use their influence and power to organize people around ways to help. I want conservatives to hold leaders to that standard and reject the idea that only the government can help. Seeing people look at the issue only through the lens of how it impacts cable news or social media points scoring annoys me.

    Time123 (dba73f)

  30. I’m on team nate/Kevin M/felipe here. I can’t get all riled up about a United States Senator going on vacation while his state is suffering statewide power-outages, any more than I can grouse at my Congressman if I think that it’s taking too long for my city to re-pave the roads.

    Rip Murdock’s question about how I would feel if Newsom went to Hawaii during a forest fire isn’t at all apt: Newsom is a state official and thus has a very prominent role to play in that type of event, and for better or worse a federal agency (FEMA) is assigned to play a role in those events, so federal officers should also stand at the ready. But even in that sense, I wouldn’t get up in arms if Dianne Feinstein decamped for Hawaii in the aftermath of an earthquake, apart from laughing at the poor optics of it all (and Cruz deserves similar mockery). But this is a power outage that while causing serious disruptions in the lives of Texans doesn’t strike me as requiring a United States Senator to be either on the scene hamming it up in front of the TV cameras or glued to his desk pretending to manage the crisis remotely.

    Honestly, the degree to which we expect elected politicians to save us during disasters would probably alarm the Founding Fathers to no end.

    JVW (ee64e4)

  31. I even heard that he had his shoes shined while other people were trudging through slush and snow, and I wouldn’t put it past him to have put new winter tires on his wife’s car, too.

    nk (1d9030)

  32. “I want leaders who look at a problem and say “It’s on me to do what i can” and then use their influence and power to organize people around ways to help. I want conservatives to hold leaders to that standard and reject the idea that only the government can help. Seeing people look at the issue only through the lens of how it impacts cable news or social media points scoring annoys me.”

    We made over 151,000 calls to senior citizens in Texas tonight. One of our vols talked to a man stranded at home w/out power in Killeen, hadn’t eaten in 2 days, got him a ride to a warming center and a hot meal. Help us reach more people, join us tomorrow:

    https://twitter.com/BetoORourke/status/1362280019863564291

    Davethulhu (6ba00b)

  33. Off-topic: Bob Dole has stage four lung cancer.

    https://www.nytimes.com/live/2021/02/18/us/joe-biden-news#bob-dole-lung-cancer

    Kevin M (ab1c11)

  34. Kevin M,

    Why do you think Cruz is returning to Texas today?

    Dana (014e34)

  35. Someone smarter and more driven than me should compare/contrast the media attention to Cruz going to Mexico while Texas freezes to Cuomo sending thousands to their death and then covering it up.

    We all know which will get more time in the press, I would just like to know by how much.

    Hoi Polloi (139bf6)

  36. How would you react if Newsom went to Hawaii during a devastating forest fire or earthquake?

    Newsom is governor. It’s HIS JOB to be running the state’s response. If Dianne Feinstein was sunning herself on Maui during a Senate recess at the same time, I’d have no problem.

    Public officials are people too. They need time off and if the rule is that they can’t take it until there are no crises, even those they have no official responsibility to address, then they will never get it.

    If it’s lobbying, why can’t he do it from Cancun, anyway? Did you know that it’s possible to have a 20-person video conference among people on 4 continents for nearly no cost? It’s not all long-distance calling on a voice phone anymore.

    Kevin M (ab1c11)

  37. Honestly, the degree to which we expect elected politicians to save us during disasters would probably alarm the Founding Fathers to no end.
    JVW (ee64e4) — 2/18/2021 @ 11:00 am

    That is an excellent point, JVW. So many “privileged” and able-bodied people prove themselves wanting in that they expect too much from others and so little of themselves.

    felipe (630e0b)

  38. Why do you think Cruz is returning to Texas today?

    Because he is tired of listening to “Why isn’t Cruz returnging to Texas?” I have no idea what he will do when he gets there except not hearing that particular whine from people who hate him. There will be new whines of course. And, really, if he’s to lobby (and who btw do you lobby to fix broken pipes or deliver propane?), wouldn’t returning to DC be better?

    Kevin M (ab1c11)

  39. Maybe he’ll tour the area by helicopter and then say a few soundbites for the news. Sometimes I think that it’s the newspeople who want all the talking heads on site.

    Kevin M (ab1c11)

  40. ……And, really, if he’s to lobby (and who btw do you lobby to fix broken pipes or deliver propane?), wouldn’t returning to DC be better?

    I have no problem with that.

    FEMA is the agency that coordinates assistance to disasters, and they have been doing so in Texas.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  41. I don’t think it’s a situation of Americans “expecting” politicians to save them. I think that this is an issue where an elected official with an enormous and wide-reaching platform with which to organize and network help, donations of money and food could help out in a way that others might not be able to.

    Dana (014e34)

  42. Time123 (dba73f) — 2/18/2021 @ 10:58 am

    I like small government. For small government to work, we need a society where people do more when unusual events happen. Not everyone will step up and I think it’s fair to criticize leaders who don’t.

    It’s fair to criticize leaders for not doing enough but I’m not as worked up as you. I take JVW’s @30 view. Actually, I’m probably closer to Boyd’s view in @5.

    But, the “we need a society where people do more” looks like it has an implied “for other people” and as much as you say “I like small government” that really isn’t the direction that leads to smaller government, i.e. you might have a little collectivism creeping in there. The direction toward smaller government is “we need a society were people are more self reliant and independent”. Even better, we need a society where it doesn’t matter what a US Senator is doing during a crisis.

    frosty (f27e97)

  43. Frankly, considering how poorly Cruz has behaved the last few years, him getting drunk in Cancun is probably helping more.

    Kevin M (ab1c11)

  44. Dana (014e34) — 2/18/2021 @ 11:29 am

    enormous and wide-reaching platform with which to organize and network help, donations of money and food could help out in a way that others might not be able to.

    He’s not an elected official but he does have an enormous and wide-reaching platform and he’s doing his part.

    frosty (f27e97)

  45. Hoi Polloi (139bf6) — 2/18/2021 @ 11:15 am

    Cuomo lied, people died.

    frosty (f27e97)

  46. Why do you think Cruz is returning to Texas today?

    Because he is tired of listening to “Why isn’t Cruz returnging to Texas?” I have no idea what he will do when he gets there except not hearing that particular whine from people who hate him.

    Kevin M (ab1c11) — 2/18/2021 @ 11:20 am

    That he left Texas during a state-wide disaster already speaks to his disconnect from what residents are going through, and now your suggestion that he is returning because he is tired of hearing the whining about his untimely departure would indicate that his early return is nothing more than a political calculation. Certainly not out of concern for Texans.

    Dana (fd537d)

  47. Why is Biden playing Mario Kart at Camp David while people in TX are freezing? Isn’t he in charge of FEMA?

    frosty (f27e97)

  48. Cruz is in good company.

    Paul Montagu (77c694)

  49. Biden should definitely travel to Texas so he can throw rolls of paper towels to people.

    Davethulhu (6ba00b)

  50. Cruz’s return from Cancun is well received.

    Paul Montagu (77c694)

  51. @30, JVW, What do you think about my comment at 29?

    I agree with this

    Honestly, the degree to which we expect elected politicians to save us during disasters would probably alarm the Founding Fathers to no end.

    and seeing conservatives justify a leader like Cruz being a no show because he’s not a clerk assigned to the issue frustrates me. I’d feel the same way about a church leader or other community leader that left their congregation / area. People can do what they want or what’s best for themselves but a leader who bails isn’t much of a leader.

    Time123 (dba73f)

  52. Paul Montagu on a roll.

    Dana (fd537d)

  53. But, the “we need a society where people do more” looks like it has an implied “for other people” and as much as you say “I like small government” that really isn’t the direction that leads to smaller government, i.e. you might have a little collectivism creeping in there. The direction toward smaller government is “we need a society were people are more self reliant and independent”. Even better, we need a society where it doesn’t matter what a US Senator is doing during a crisis.

    frosty (f27e97) — 2/18/2021 @ 11:39 am

    When an infrequent catastrophy happens you get to pick 1.

    1 People suffer and die needlessly.
    2 People do more to help those around them.
    3 Government is big enough handle everything.

    Your comment in bold is a vote for the 3rd.

    Time123 (dba73f)

  54. Why do you think Cruz is returning to Texas today?

    Because he is tired of listening to “Why isn’t Cruz returnging to Texas?” I have no idea what he will do when he gets there except not hearing that particular whine from people who hate him. There will be new whines of course. And, really, if he’s to lobby (and who btw do you lobby to fix broken pipes or deliver propane?), wouldn’t returning to DC be better?

    Kevin M (ab1c11) — 2/18/2021 @ 11:20 am

    I and others have provided multiple examples of things he could do and things other leaders are doing. You keep pretending there’s nothing he can do as if you didn’t read them.

    Time123 (dba73f)

  55. Certainly not out of concern for Texans.

    Where did you put the goal posts? I can’t find them.

    Kevin M (ab1c11)

  56. Luckily President Harris is on the case:

    Kamala Harris has sent a message to residents of Texas and other states hit by power outages and prolonged winter conditions that help is on the way.

    “I just want to mention all of those folks in Texas and the mid-Atlantic,” the vice-president said in a live interview on Wednesday morning on NBC’s Today show, her first national network interview since taking office.

    “I know they can’t see us right now, because they’re without electricity, but the president and I are thinking of them, and really hope we can do everything that is possible through the signing of the emergency orders to get federal relief to support them.”

    Gone are the days of thoughts and prayers. True leadership is streamlining it to “thinking of them, and really hop[ing]”.

    Biden signed a declaration of emergency for Texas on Sunday, opening the way for state officials to move more quickly to tap a larger share of federal aid.

    Then played some more Mario Kart and took a nap.

    frosty (f27e97)

  57. Someone smarter and more driven than me should compare/contrast the media attention to Cruz going to Mexico while Texas freezes to Cuomo sending thousands to their death and then covering it up.

    We all know which will get more time in the press, I would just like to know by how much.

    Hoi Polloi (139bf6) — 2/18/2021 @ 11:15 am

    You know nothing of the sort, but you need to assume it to justify your persecution complex. Kevin’s comment about Toxic partisanship seems appropriate.

    Time123 (dba73f)

  58. You keep pretending there’s nothing he can do as if you didn’t read them.

    No, I keep “pretending” there is nothing he can do that he needs to be in Texas to do. Considering the heat, power and water situation, he might be better off doing it from somewhere else.

    Kevin M (ab1c11)

  59. But he’s back now. Please keep us all informed of the action Cruz takes to make things right.

    /sarc

    Kevin M (ab1c11)

  60. I don’t think it’s a situation of Americans “expecting” politicians to save them. I think that this is an issue where an elected official with an enormous and wide-reaching platform with which to organize and network help, donations of money and food could help out in a way that others might not be able to.

    Dana (014e34) — 2/18/2021 @ 11:29 am

    He can also work with the administrators of the official relief effort and help deal with the endless complications / lack of common sense that often come up.

    Time123 (dba73f)

  61. Cruz’s statement:

    With school cancelled for the week, our girls asked to take a trip with friends. Wanting to be a good dad, I flew down with them last night and am flying back this afternoon.

    However, it is being reported that he originally planned to return on Saturday:

    Spoke to a source at United Airlines, Senator Ted Cruz rebooked his flight back to Houston from Cancun for this afternoon at around 6 a.m. today (Thursday). He was originally scheduled to return on Saturday.

    I don’t see what difference a day makes unless the report is referring to a week from now. It’s not clear to me.

    Dana (fd537d)

  62. You keep pretending there’s nothing he can do as if you didn’t read them.

    No, I keep “pretending” there is nothing he can do that he needs to be in Texas to do. Considering the heat, power and water situation, he might be better off doing it from somewhere else.

    Kevin M (ab1c11) — 2/18/2021 @ 12:05 pm

    But he’s back now. Please keep us all informed of the action Cruz takes to make things right.

    /sarc

    Kevin M (ab1c11) — 2/18/2021 @ 12:05 pm

    Right, he wanted to work remotely, that’s why he flew to Cancun and not Little Rock or Shreveport. There are things he could do. He just couldn’t be bothered and went on vacation instead. You keep making excuses for his lack of leadership because you like him. Given the fact that he doesn’t seem to care, and his supporters care less about actions then they do about partisan sniping what incentive does he have to actually try to accomplish anything? After all, not his job.

    Time123 (dba73f)

  63. Cruz’s statement:
    With school cancelled for the week, our girls asked to take a trip with friends. Wanting to be a good dad, I flew down with them last night and am flying back this afternoon.
    However, it is being reported that he originally planned to return on Saturday:
    Spoke to a source at United Airlines, Senator Ted Cruz rebooked his flight back to Houston from Cancun for this afternoon at around 6 a.m. today (Thursday). He was originally scheduled to return on Saturday.
    I don’t see what difference a day makes unless the report is referring to a week from now. It’s not clear to me.

    Dana (fd537d) — 2/18/2021 @ 12:08 pm

    If all of this attention shames him into trying hard to help people in Texas that would be a great thing.

    Time123 (dba73f)

  64. Gather round while I sing you of Canadian Cruz,
    A man whose allegiance is ruled by expedience;
    Call him unprincipled for changing his views,
    “Principles, schminzables” coos Canadian Cruz

    Don’t say that he’s hypocritical,
    Say rather that he’s quite political;
    “No power in Texas? By next week it’s old news!
    It’s warm in Cancun,” coos Canadian Cruz

    Some have harsh words for his bait-and-switch ruse,
    But some say their attitude should be one of gratitude;
    Like the wife and the father; their honor abused,
    So easily betrayed by Canadian Cruz

    “You become a conservative hero;
    Stranding Texans at five below zero;
    In Canada ‘oder’ Mexico, I go where I choose,
    And I’ll go there again,” coos Canadian Cruz.

    Apologies to the great Tom Lehrer

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  65. Did Governor Abbott really say, “Look! It’s Halley’s Comet!” 😉

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  66. ….let’s remember he’s got lots of kids and is actually human.

    Two.

    Both old enough to know it’s a helluva lot warmer in Cancun, Mexico than Dallas, Texas or Washington, DC.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  67. 57. Cuomo will get/has gotten much more time in the press, although I don’t know about public criticism by elected Democratic politicians. It didn’t get that much attention at the start. Now the Attorney General of New York State got involved.

    And I don’t think his order to admit Covid patients discharged from hospitals without testing them (let alone refusing to admit them) is actually the cause of the high death rate in nursing homes.

    A lot of it was that they were no good at infectious disease control.

    I think the root cause was excluding family visitors. And pretending everybody else was OK.

    Everything else followed. Including Cuomo’s order. Cuomo’s order wold not have lasted three days had family members been allowed to visit.

    Sammy Finkelman (86c6e0)

  68. Time123 (dba73f) — 2/18/2021 @ 12:01 pm

    When an infrequent catastrophy happens you get to pick 1.

    1 People suffer and die needlessly.
    2 People do more to help those around them.
    3 Government is big enough handle everything.

    Your comment in bold is a vote for the 3rd.

    To paraphrase P-word M-word, who died and put you in charge of picking things? It’s a joke, just joking, it was hard to pass up.

    Anyway;

    I suspect you’re trying to be generous. My comment in bold is actually a vote for #1 and possibly #2. To be more accurate, #1 should be “people suffer and die because they aren’t prepared”. But there is no world in which it doesn’t matter what a senator is doing that is a vote for #3. A vote for #3 would imply that what a senator is going is important and vice versa.

    Embedded in your idea that Cruz should be doing something because he’s a leader is the notion that government is big enough to handle everything. Cruz being a US senator is the source of the additional influence and power that you referred to earlier and it’s why we’re debating what he should be doing as opposed to some random Texan. In a small government world there would be no enormous and wide-reaching platform referred to by Dana that a senator would utilize.

    In a small government world there would be no debate over what a US senator should be doing in his capacity as a US senator. The debate would be about local officials, Texans, and people generally. In that world getting upset at Cruz for going to MX would rate about as high as the general question of anyone leaving for warmer weather.

    frosty (f27e97)

  69. 41.I don’t think it’s a situation of Americans “expecting” politicians to save them. I think that this is an issue where an elected official with an enormous and wide-reaching platform with which to organize and network help, donations of money and food could help out in a way that others might not be able to.

    Precisely.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  70. OT- NASA’s Perseverance spacecraft now in ‘entry interface’ over the surface of Mars heading toward a landing– or crash.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  71. I need a small vacation but it don’t look like rain so I will need a police escort to get me thru the airport when it warms up and I can get back from cancun.

    asset (e2cefe)

  72. Touchdown!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Outstanding, Way to go JPL and NASA!!!! Damn, government is good!

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  73. Perseverance is safely on Mars–with a frigging ‘helicopter’ aboard.

    Photos to come shortly– what a time to be alive.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  74. How come nobody’s talking about what the other Senator from Texas is doing?

    This is about it:

    https://www.cornyn.senate.gov/content/page/texas-winter-storm

    The issue isn’t really what help senator Cruz could give. The issue is that Senator Ted Cruz seemed to be disassociating himself from the problem in a big way – it would be like he wasn’t even living in Texas. How can he represent them etc..

    It is also true that Senator Cruz makes himself a big shot, so maybe some people argue you’d expect more from him.

    Sammy Finkelman (86c6e0)

  75. Perseverance is safely on Mars–with a frigging ‘helicopter’ aboard.

    At this link, the images from NASA’s Mars rover landing are breathtaking.

    Paul Montagu (77c694)

  76. Optics bad. Media attacks. Cruz is a Senator who cannot make Schumer or Pelosi do a darn thing.

    Vacation scheduled in advance. But Cruz was a surrogate for Orange Man Bad.

    NJRob (eb56c3)

  77. One can empathize if this was a long-planned family trip….let’s remember he’s got lots of kids and is actually human.

    I’m sure there are lots of Texas families that would like to fly out of the cold to Cancun but can’t because, you know, they can’t afford it.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  78. Cruz’s statement:

    With school cancelled for the week, our girls asked to take a trip with friends. Wanting to be a good dad, I flew down with them last night and am flying back this afternoon.

    Besides, he needed the time off because trying to overthrow the government is tiring.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  79. Why is FrosTED spending his tourist dollars in a sh*thole country that sends us murderers and rapists, and still owes us a big beautiful wall, when there are incredibly tremendous American resorts unfairly suffering from the fake China virus?!

    Sad!

    Dave (1bb933)

  80. I’m not sure I believe this statement from Cruz.

    Paul Montagu (77c694)

  81. Vacation scheduled in advance.

    Cruz’s statement says the opposite.

    Dave (1bb933)

  82. I suspect you’re trying to be generous. My comment in bold is actually a vote for #1 and possibly #2. To be more accurate, #1 should be “people suffer and die because they aren’t prepared”. But there is no world in which it doesn’t matter what a senator is doing that is a vote for #3. A vote for #3 would imply that what a senator is going is important and vice versa.

    Embedded in your idea that Cruz should be doing something because he’s a leader is the notion that government is big enough to handle everything. Cruz being a US senator is the source of the additional influence and power that you referred to earlier and it’s why we’re debating what he should be doing as opposed to some random Texan. In a small government world there would be no enormous and wide-reaching platform referred to by Dana that a senator would utilize.

    In a small government world there would be no debate over what a US senator should be doing in his capacity as a US senator. The debate would be about local officials, Texans, and people generally. In that world getting upset at Cruz for going to MX would rate about as high as the general question of anyone leaving for warmer weather.

    frosty (f27e97) — 2/18/2021 @ 12:36 pm

    1. Die if you weren’t ready to lose electricity and heat for days during subzero temperatures in Dallas is an interesting take. I’d put this outside of “reasonable” expectation of preparedness but YMMV.
    2. In the world we live in Senators are leaders. If one wanted to showcase how ppl can organize themselves to deal with it that would be great. I mean that. I’d like it.
    3. Even in that world, someone who was leader (Church, Business, what have you) would be open to fair criticism if they went on vacation during an emergency.

    Time123 (cd2ff4)

  83. @30

    I’m on team nate/Kevin M/felipe here. I can’t get all riled up about a United States Senator going on vacation while his state is suffering statewide power-outages, any more than I can grouse at my Congressman if I think that it’s taking too long for my city to re-pave the roads.

    Rip Murdock’s question about how I would feel if Newsom went to Hawaii during a forest fire isn’t at all apt: Newsom is a state official and thus has a very prominent role to play in that type of event, and for better or worse a federal agency (FEMA) is assigned to play a role in those events, so federal officers should also stand at the ready. But even in that sense, I wouldn’t get up in arms if Dianne Feinstein decamped for Hawaii in the aftermath of an earthquake, apart from laughing at the poor optics of it all (and Cruz deserves similar mockery). But this is a power outage that while causing serious disruptions in the lives of Texans doesn’t strike me as requiring a United States Senator to be either on the scene hamming it up in front of the TV cameras or glued to his desk pretending to manage the crisis remotely.

    Honestly, the degree to which we expect elected politicians to save us during disasters would probably alarm the Founding Fathers to no end.

    JVW (ee64e4) — 2/18/2021 @ 11:00 am

    All of this. I’m on this team too.

    Cruz-haters will ding him for anything, so…

    ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

    whembly (7baeb9)

  84. I’m sure there are lots of Texas families that would like to fly out of the cold to Cancun but can’t because, you know, they can’t afford it.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8) — 2/18/2021 @ 1:35 pm

    You certainly have the communist class warfare argument down. Everyone should live in an equal level of misery. The poor will always exist, even if we have to redefine them like we do in America where the poor are now fat with big screen tvs and cell phones.

    NJRob (eb56c3)

  85. Optics bad. Media attacks. Cruz is a Senator who cannot make Schumer or Pelosi do a darn thing.

    Vacation scheduled in advance. But Cruz was a surrogate for Orange Man Bad.

    NJRob (eb56c3) — 2/18/2021 @ 1:34 pm

    What a stupid take that completely ignores everything that’s been said above.

    Time123 (cd2ff4)

  86. https://www.cruz.senate.gov/?p=press_release&id=3855

    and

    https://www.cruz.senate.gov/?p=press_release&id=5619

    Sammy, it appears Cruz has the same type of links as Cornyn.

    NJRob (eb56c3)

  87. Time123,

    thanks. I appreciate that you resort to insults time and time again when you disagree with the position then you eventually decide to apologize. Save the time. Don’t bother.

    NJRob (eb56c3)

  88. @ whembly,

    Cruz-haters will ding him for anything, so…

    I wrote the post because I felt it was news-worthy. However, contrary to you generalization (and insult), I do not hate Cruz. Not even after he became a Trump toadie. I dislike who he has revealed himself to be with his allegiance to Trump. But I don’t “hate” him. It’s not infrequently that Trump supports paint those who don’t support Trump or aren’t loyal to the Republican party as “haters”. Heaven forbid, they just don’t hold in esteem or admiration those that you do.

    Dana (fd537d)

  89. Dana,

    your remarks calling Senator Cruz a “Trump toadie” says it all. Would you have written this post from the same angle if Cruz stayed a virulent anti-Trump speaker instead of working with the former President of the United States? We both can form our own opinions.

    Would you write the same post about Senator Romney?

    NJRob (eb56c3)

  90. And just a reminder, but Cruz was scheduled to be there a whole 2 days, but that’s too much for those who want to harp on every perceived insult.

    NJRob (eb56c3)

  91. Kevin M convinced me. I don’t object to Cruz going down to Cancun.

    I object to him coming back.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  92. LOL.

    White House press secretary Jen Psaki leaned into a question about Cruz’s “whereabouts” earlier in the day.

    “I don’t have any updates on the exact location of Sen. Ted Cruz nor does anyone at the White House,” Psaki said

    Even fascist fellow-traveller Allen West seems unamused:

    “That’s something that he has to answer to his constituents about,” Texas GOP Chair Allen West said when asked whether Cruz’s travel was appropriate while Texans are without power and water.

    “I’m here trying to take care of my family and look after my friends and others that are still without power,” West said. “That’s my focus.”

    Uh huh.

    Dave (1bb933)

  93. NJRob, just looked up the definition to be sure I was using it correctly. Merriam-Webster defines the term as meaning:

    : one who flatters in the hope of gaining favors : sycophant. toady. verb.

    Therefore, the description appears accurate. I can’t help it if you choose to believe that my usage of it reveals that I hate Cruz. Would I write the same thing if he were anti-Trump? Yep. Would I write it about Romney? Heh, I’m pretty darn sure he would never give me cause.

    Dana (014e34)

  94. @88

    @ whembly,
    Cruz-haters will ding him for anything, so…

    I wrote the post because I felt it was news-worthy. However, contrary to you generalization (and insult), I do not hate Cruz. Not even after he became a Trump toadie. I dislike who he has revealed himself to be with his allegiance to Trump. But I don’t “hate” him. It’s not infrequently that Trump supports paint those who don’t support Trump or aren’t loyal to the Republican party as “haters”. Heaven forbid, they just don’t hold in esteem or admiration those that you do.

    Dana (fd537d) — 2/18/2021 @ 1:59 pm

    Dana, I apologize if you thought I was directing that at you, that wasn’t my intention.

    It is newsworthy in that his haters are trying to make this some sort of Bush-Katrina albatross.

    Cruz is a polarizing figuring and has a large share of “haters” including the media. It’s those folks I directed that post.

    whembly (c30c83)

  95. You know nothing of the sort, but you need to assume it to justify your persecution complex. Kevin’s comment about Toxic partisanship seems appropriate.
    Time123 (dba73f) — 2/18/2021 @ 12:05 pm

    You sound a bit defensive. Is it that CNN isn’t uttering a word because Cuomo’s brother works there? But hey, we may hear about it when more Democratic politicians – like Kim – come forward and the DNC decides Cuomo is a lost cause. Until then there are always squirrels to avoid the reckoning of thousands of needless deaths on his watch.

    Hoi Polloi (139bf6)

  96. Speaking for myself, I’ve moved beyond hatred and am now squarely in the “mockery” camp for Cruz.

    He is a pathetic, risible figure.

    Dave (1bb933)

  97. Cruz is a Trump toadie. What self-respecting man would support someone who publicly insulted his wife and then accused his father of participating in the Kennedy assassination?

    Someone with very weak character.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  98. Texas was “seconds and minutes” away from catastrophic monthslong blackouts, officials say
    …….
    As millions of customers throughout the state begin to have power restored after days of massive blackouts, officials with the Electric Reliability Council of Texas, or ERCOT, which operates the power grid that covers most of the state, said Texas was dangerously close to a worst-case scenario: uncontrolled blackouts across the state.

    The quick decision that grid operators made in the early hours of Monday morning to begin what was intended to be rolling blackouts — but lasted days for millions of Texans — occurred because operators were seeing warning signs that massive amounts of energy supply was dropping off the grid.

    As natural gas fired plants, utility scale wind power and coal plants tripped offline due to the extreme cold brought by the winter storm, the amount of power supplied to the grid to be distributed across the state fell rapidly. At the same time, demand was increasing as consumers and businesses turned up the heat and stayed inside to avoid the weather.
    ……
    Grid operators had to act quickly to cut the amount of power distributed, (Bill Magness, president of ERCOT) said, because if they had waited, “then what happens in that next minute might be that three more [power generation] units come offline, and then you’re sunk.”

    Magness said on Wednesday that if operators had not acted in that moment, the state could have suffered blackouts that “could have occurred for months,” and left Texas in an “indeterminately long” crisis.

    The worst case scenario: Demand for power overwhelms the supply of power generation available on the grid, causing equipment to catch fire, substations to blow and power lines to go down.
    ……..
    Grid operators would have needed to slowly and carefully bring generators and customers back online, all the while taking care to not to cause more damage to the grid. It’s a delicate process, Johnson explained, because each part of the puzzle — the generators producing power, the transmission lines that move the power and the customers that use it — must be carefully managed.
    ………

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  99. Cruz reminds me of Theon Greyjoy (aka Reek) from Game of Thrones, except that when Cruz had his chance for redemption, he remained loyal to the man who castrated him.

    Dave (1bb933)

  100. I’m not sure I believe this statement from Cruz.

    Paul Montagu (77c694) — 2/18/2021 @ 1:48 pm

    Don’t be a credulous dupe. That’s obviously fake.

    Here’s the legit statement from Cruz’s spokeswoman.

    lurker (59504c)

  101. Um, lurker, I also don’t give alerts to satire.

    Paul Montagu (77c694)

  102. What I can’t figure out is why Texans use electricty for heating. Here in neighboring New Mexico we have so much natural gas that the cost of the gas is only about a third of the “gas” bill. Pipelines, maintenance (they do that here) corporate costs and government fees make up the other two thirds.

    On my $90 January gas bill, $30 was for natural gas. This is less than my January bill was in Los Angeles, where you can wear flip-flops most of the “winter.”

    I shudder to think what the bill would have been, heating with electricity.

    Kevin M (ab1c11)

  103. Time123,

    thanks. I appreciate that you resort to insults time and time again when you disagree with the position then you eventually decide to apologize. Save the time. Don’t bother.

    NJRob (eb56c3) — 2/18/2021 @ 1:59 pm

    I apologize when I make a mistake.
    Calling your comment stupid wasn’t a mistake. (Note, I didn’t say you were stupid,
    Just that your comment was.)

    Time123 (9f42ee)

  104. Kevin’s, parts of DFW have lost natural gas as well as electricity. It’s not just places with electric heat.

    Time123 (9f42ee)

  105. Also, coal-fired electricity plants? In a state that floats on oil and natural gas? That’s just wrong.

    Kevin M (ab1c11)

  106. Kevin’s, parts of DFW have lost natural gas as well as electricity.

    Why? A cascade? Or diverting it somewhere else?

    Kevin M (ab1c11)

  107. With school cancelled for the week, our girls asked to take a trip with friends. Wanting to be a good dad, I flew down with them last night and am flying back this afternoon.

    This ranks up there we/Jimma Carter consulting daughter Amy on nuclear weapons.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  108. @99, Dave, it’s definitely hard to find examples of him doing anything admirable. He seems smart. Just a weak man.

    Time123 (9f42ee)

  109. Kevin, I’ll see if I can find the link. But basically the natural gas process wasn’t designed for the cold.

    Time123 (9f42ee)

  110. 101. Satire? What is satire?

    lurker (59504c)

  111. @102. What I can’t figure out is why Texans use electricity for heating…

    Reaganomics.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  112. All the power sources for Texas had problems, not just coal and natural gas, but also nuclear.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  113. @106

    Kevin’s, parts of DFW have lost natural gas as well as electricity.

    Why? A cascade? Or diverting it somewhere else?

    Kevin M (ab1c11) — 2/18/2021 @ 3:12 pm

    Because the nat gas pumps froze.

    whembly (c30c83)

  114. Cruz and Graham are special kinds of toadies for being strongly anti-Trump during the 2016 primaries and then flip-flopping to mewling supplicants in order to preserve their political careers, especially Cruz for taking the fascist the route by objecting on 1/6.

    Paul Montagu (77c694)

  115. @81. Vacation scheduled in advance.

    Which is precisely why President Plagiarist should have pulled a Truman and called these lazy-azzed bastards back to work given the national emergencies of a pandemic and desperate need for Covid aid, vaccine distribution and now emergency aid to Texas. He’s useless.

    “Andromeda will spread every where! They’ll never be rid of it!” – Dr. Jeremy Stone [Arthur Hill ] ‘The Andromeda Strain’ 1971

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  116. Which is precisely why President Plagiarist should have pulled a Truman and called these lazy-azzed bastards back to work. . .”

    Seems like that would be the tail wagging the dog. Do you think that Joe Biden, who spent 66 years (or something like that) in the United States Senate, would dare to give a command of that magnitude to the guy who, beyond all belief, has turned out to be the least annoying Democrat politician in New York?

    JVW (ee64e4)

  117. “Vacation scheduled in advance. ”

    Turns out this was a lie.

    “And just a reminder, but Cruz was scheduled to be there a whole 2 days”

    Oh, and this was also a lie.

    Davethulhu (6ba00b)

  118. Cruz admits that it was a mistake to go.

    Dana (fd537d)

  119. Hoo boy:

    Text messages sent from Ms. Cruz to friends and Houston neighbors on Wednesday revealed a hastily planned trip. Their house was “FREEZING,” as Ms. Cruz put it — and she proposed a getaway until Sunday. Ms. Cruz invited others to join them at the Ritz-Carlton in Cancún, where they had stayed “many times,” noting the room price this week ($309 per night) and its good security. The text messages were provided to The New York Times and confirmed by a second person on the thread, who declined to be identified because of the private nature of the texts.

    If Mr. Cruz intended to leave the impression that he meant to stay for only a day, his large suitcase and the group text messages Ms. Cruz had sent planning a longer itinerary suggested he had cut his trip short…

    When Ms. Cruz wrote to the group text chain of neighbors trying to weather the extreme conditions early Wednesday, she said the family had been staying with friends to keep warm, but quickly pivoted to offering an invitation to get away.

    “Anyone can or want to leave for the week?” she wrote. “We may go to Cancún.” She teased a “direct flight” and “hotels w capacity. Seriously.” Ms. Cruz promptly shared details for a Wednesday afternoon departure, a Sunday return trip and a luxurious stay at the oceanfront Ritz-Carlton in the meantime.

    No one appeared to bite, but Ms. Cruz did extend a more practical offer. “We have gas stove so at least we can heat water little that there is happy to help anyone we can too,” she wrote.

    Dana (fd537d)

  120. Turns out this was a lie.
    […]
    Oh, and this was also a lie.

    A pattern seems to be emerging…

    Dave (1bb933)

  121. Karma is a nasty woman.

    Ted Cruz has repeatedly slammed politicians for vacationing during crisis

    Dave (1bb933)

  122. It’s okay, comrades. Come the Revolution, everybody will fly to Cancun.

    nk (1d9030)

  123. Ted Cruz is such a wuss even his friends can’t stand his BS.

    Time123 (653992)

  124. Lyin’ Ted; NYT reports kids had nothing to do w/it; texts obtained by NYT show Heidi told friends house was ‘FREEZING’ [she used all caps] in Houston and suggested a weekend in Cancun at Ritz-Carlton @ $309/night w/good security.

    There are backers on this blog suckered who sent this jerk $, too. Ask for a refund.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  125. @119. The ‘ugly’ truth.

    Trump had her pegged.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  126. On my $90 January gas bill, $30 was for natural gas. This is less than my January bill was in Los Angeles, where you can wear flip-flops most of the “winter.”

    I shudder to think what the bill would have been, heating with electricity.

    Imagine how much more your electric bill in Texas would be if you had to pay for things like proactive maintenance and weatherproofing.

    Nah.

    Colonel Klink (Ret) (1367c0)

  127. Dana @119-

    From your link:

    “It was clearly an error in judgment,” said Ray Sullivan, an Austin-based Republican strategist who served as chief of staff to former Gov. Rick Perry. While a senator cannot personally restore the power grid, Mr. Sullivan said, “people expect their elected officials to be fully engaged during a crisis.”

    Mr. Cruz, 50, narrowly won re-election in 2018 against Beto O’Rourke, a Democratic former congressman, carrying less than 51 percent of the vote. In that race, Mr. Cruz had aggressively highlighted his efforts during a past emergency, Hurricane Harvey. He is not up for re-election until 2024.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  128. Karma is a nasty woman.

    Ted Cruz has repeatedly slammed politicians for vacationing during crisis

    Dave (1bb933) — 2/18/2021 @ 4:39 pm

    I hope cruz spends time with his staff coming up with ideas on things he can do to help and floods the zone with activity. It would be fantastic if he were able to respond to future criticism by pointing out all the great things he did to help people after 2/19.

    Time123 (b0628d)

  129. Kevin

    https://www.cnet.com/news/texas-power-outages-why-blackouts-hit-as-temperatures-dropped/

    “The ability for gas generators to produce, particularly at full output, was affected by the freezing impact on the natural gas supply,” Bill Magness, ERCOT president and CEO, said during a livestream Wednesday. “So getting those resources back is the central solution to getting people their power back.”

    Approximately 40% of generators went offline due to the cold weather. The significant drop in power generated led to rolling blackouts across the state as ERCOT tried to keep a balance between the supply and demand in order to prevent a “catastrophic” blackout. This made the outage last much longer than ERCOT anticipated.

    As for prepping power plants for extreme cold to prevent generators from freezing, Dan Woodfin, senior director of system operations for ERCOT, says there are national standards being considered, but they have yet to be mandatory.

    “It’s voluntary guidelines for the individual generation companies to decide to do those things,” Woodfin said. “They have financial incentive to be able to participate in the market to follow those [regulations] and stay online, but there’s no regulation at this point.”

    Time123 (653992)

  130. Wasn’t Ted the great hope that should have been the pick instead of DJT in 2016? For everyone that loved TC then was he always a scumbag and you just were fooled or has he been bodysnatched?

    frosty (f27e97)

  131. As for prepping power plants for extreme cold to prevent generators from freezing, Dan Woodfin, senior director of system operations for ERCOT, says there are national standards being considered, but they have yet to be mandatory.

    Sorta like wearin’ a mask, eh, Danny-Boy?! 😉

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  132. For everyone that loved TC then was he always a scumbag and you just were fooled or has he been bodysnatched?

    He was better than Trump. Still is.

    nk (1d9030)

  133. Time123 (cd2ff4) — 2/18/2021 @ 1:51 pm

    Then what exactly do you mean when you say you like small government? Because nothing you’ve said lines up with any sort of small government I’m familiar with.

    I like small government.

    Did I misunderstood? Was this a “I like small government but …” sort of thing?

    frosty (f27e97)

  134. Kevin M — there was a supply collapse in natural gas that appears to be in part a result of the distribution apparatus freezing. turns out they didn’t weatherize *that*, either.

    aphrael (4c4719)

  135. Frosty: I voted for Cruz in the 2016 primary because he was the candidate I thought most likely to be able to take a delegate from Trump. (I was wrong, and should have voted for Kasich).

    At the time, I thought he was an honest, principled conservative. His behavior during the Trump era demonstrated that to be an illusion. He is a scumbag who used to be good at pretending that he wasn’t.

    aphrael (4c4719)

  136. He was better than Trump. Still is.

    Not after January 6th.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  137. “Anyone can or want to leave for the week?” she wrote. “We may go to Cancún.” She teased a “direct flight” and “hotels w capacity. Seriously.” Ms. Cruz promptly shared details for a Wednesday afternoon departure, a Sunday return trip and a luxurious stay at the oceanfront Ritz-Carlton in the meantime.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4mCQHqig-Uk

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  138. At the time, I thought he was an honest, principled conservative.

    No. Such. Thing.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  139. > “It’s voluntary guidelines for the individual generation companies to decide to do those things,” Woodfin said. “They have financial incentive to be able to participate in the market to follow those [regulations] and stay online, but there’s no regulation at this point.”

    Would that be true if the texas interconnect were subject to federal regulation? There’s a widespread belief on the left that federal regulation would have mandated such weatherization.

    aphrael (4c4719)

  140. 140. There’s a widespread belief on the left that federal regulation would have mandated such weatherization.

    There’s 100% belief in basic common sense. When you go cheap, you get cheap.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  141. If the utilities had spent for weatherization instead of the stupid “green energy”, they wouldn’t be having these problems. But they would not have had the short-term profits from the “green” subsidies and incentives, either.

    Reaganomics!

    nk (1d9030)

  142. Ted Cruz is a goddamned idiot:

    https://wwwnc.cdc.gov/travel/notices/covid-4/coronavirus-mexico

    Level 4: Very High Level of COVID-19 in Mexico

    CDC recommends that you do not travel at this time. Travelers should avoid all travel to Mexico. If you must travel: Before you travel, get tested with a viral test 1–3 days before your trip. Do NOT travel if you were exposed to COVID-19, you are sick, or you test positive for COVID-19.

    Key Information for Travelers to Mexico

    •Travel increases your chances of getting and spreading COVID-19. CDC recommends that you do not travel at this time.

    •Travelers should avoid all travel to Mexico.

    •If you must travel: ◦Before you travel, get tested with a viral test 1–3 days before your trip.

    ◾Do NOT travel if you were exposed to COVID-19, you are sick, or you test positive for COVID-19. Learn when it is safe for you to travel. Don’t travel with someone who is sick.

    ◾Follow all entry requirements for your destination and provide any required or requested health information.

    ◦During travel, wear a mask, avoid crowds, stay at least 6 feet from people who are not traveling with you, wash your hands often or use hand sanitizer, and watch for symptoms.

    ◾Before traveling back to the United States by air, get tested with a viral test no more than 3 days before your flight departs. The test result must be negative. Keep a copy of your test results with you during travel in case you are asked for them. See Frequently Asked Questions for more information about this requirement. Follow all destination and airline recommendations or requirements.

    ◦After you travel, get tested 3–5 days after travel AND stay home to self-quarantine for 7 days after travel. If you don’t get tested, it’s safest to stay home to self-quarantine for 10 days.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  143. Time123 (cd2ff4) — 2/18/2021 @ 1:51 pm

    Then what exactly do you mean when you say you like small government? Because nothing you’ve said lines up with any sort of small government I’m familiar with.

    I like small government.

    Did I misunderstood? Was this a “I like small government but …” sort of thing?

    frosty (f27e97) — 2/18/2021 @ 5:47 pm

    I want a small government, with limited powers that’s focused on issues that are legitimately public. I’d put natural disasters and infrastructure as part of it. Where possible I like local control and non-governmental actors solving problems. What’s happening in Texas, loss of power, heat, water and in some cases sewers, are IMO a natural disaster similar to a flood or a hurricane.

    Can you help me understand what I’m saying that sounds like I’m not in favor of small government?

    1. Die if you weren’t ready to lose electricity and heat for days during subzero temperatures in Dallas is an interesting take. I’d put this outside of “reasonable” expectation of preparedness but YMMV.
    2. In the world we live in Senators are leaders. If one wanted to showcase how ppl can organize themselves to deal with it that would be great. I mean that. I’d like it.
    3. Even in that world, someone who was leader (Church, Business, what have you) would be open to fair criticism if they went on vacation during an emergency.

    Time123 (653992)

  144. 99.Cruz reminds me of Theon Greyjoy (aka Reek) from Game of Thrones, except that when Cruz had his chance for redemption, he remained loyal to the man who castrated him.

    More like the turkey carcasses they toss into jet engines to test turbine blades.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  145. @4. While I appreciate the suffering of individual Texans, the arrogance of their politicians during the crisis is astounding. Marie Antoinette would be proud.

    More like William Travis– ‘remember’ how his command of that situation ended.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  146. So … what’s the story with Kanye West still wearing his wedding ring despite all the talk about divorcing Kim Kardashian?

    nk (1d9030)

  147. ◦After you travel, get tested 3–5 days after travel AND stay home to self-quarantine for 7 days after travel. If you don’t get tested, it’s safest to stay home to self-quarantine for 10 days.
    DCSCA (f4c5e5) — 2/18/2021 @ 6:07 pm

    It’s not just that. Mexico is one of the most violent, dangerous, and corrupt places on the planet. His wife might trust security, but I wouldn’t. Especially in the tourist areas that the cartels pretty much run now. And even if they didn’t, I’m pretty sure most private security would sell out any gringos to kidnappers, if not for the payday then to keep their own family safe.

    Hoi Polloi (139bf6)

  148. Kevin Williamson at NRO does a pretty good job explaining what is going on with energy in Texas. Unsurprisingly, it involves tough trade-offs, the sort that business executives and their customers don’t really like to make:

    In addition to the usual troubles of downed power lines and the like, electricity plants are having a hard time getting fuel or using the fuel they have, including natural gas and coal. So-called renewables such as wind power and solar perform poorly, or do not perform at all, in such conditions, while natural-gas, coal, and nuclear facilities have been shut down or hampered by pipelines, instrumentation, and other equipment that is inadequate to the current conditions. Texas has more than enough natural gas to power itself through a storm such as this one, but it does not have sufficient capacity to get that fuel where it is needed or to use it in the current conditions. If you can’t get the gas where it’s needed, you may as well not have it at all.

    Texas could have an infrastructure that is better prepared for this kind of thing, but the upgrades would be expensive. Nobody wanted to pay for them a week ago. Nobody will want to pay for them a week from now. But today, millions of Texans wish the money had been spent — preferably by someone else, of course.

    Fully weatherized pipelines are a wasteful and irresponsible boondoggle that the energy industry tries to foist upon the ratepayer — right up until the crisis moment when they are desperately needed. Those of us who watch the annual cage-match between Pacific Gas & Electric and Northern California city and county governments (to name but one bout on the card) know how this goes.

    JVW (ee64e4)

  149. Time123 (653992) — 2/18/2021 @ 6:12 pm

    I suppose small is relative. You’ve said small but it needs to be large enough to deal with large scale natural disasters. That isn’t a small government. Responding to major national disasters on a government level means FEMA. Regulations that might have prevented this also aren’t the result of a small government.

    This is sort of like saying you want a small military that is capable waging a world war on two fronts.

    The small government version is saying people, individuals and families, should have been prepared but you’ve said that is unreasonable. It’s only unreasonable because you think these are issues that can only be dealt with by a large collective response or because it sounds like blaming the victim.

    Again, this sounds more like small government except for this sort of reasoning.

    I don’t disagree with you on TC. He should have stayed and at least tried to help. I think this is more of an executive branch FEMA thing but that doesn’t mean it’s a good idea for him to go on vacation.

    frosty (f27e97)

  150. Feds Warned Texas To Weatherize Power Grid The Last Time This Happened

    https://crooksandliars.com/2021/02/feds-warned-texas-weatherize-power-grid

    Texas Was Warned a Decade Ago Its Grid Was Unprepared for Cold

    https://www.bloombergquint.com/technology/texas

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  151. What possible good could United States Senator Ted Cruz do?

    Wow.

    We officially raised $1 million for Texas relief at 9:17pm.

    Thank you all so much. I’m at a loss for words. Always in awe of movement work.

    100% of this relief is going straight to Texan food assistance, homelessness relief, elder care, and more.

    https://twitter.com/AOC/status/1362595095489429505

    Davethulhu (6ba00b)

  152. “It’s not just that. Mexico is one of the most violent, dangerous, and corrupt places on the planet.”

    Cancun is very safe…at least the last I checked. The cartels don’t control Cancun

    AJ_Liberty (a4ff25)

  153. We officially raised $1 million for Texas relief at 9:17pm.

    Never let a crisis go to waste.

    100% of this relief is going straight to Texan food assistance, homelessness relief, elder care, and more.

    When, where, with whom, and how?

    nk (1d9030)

  154. “When, where, with whom, and how?”

    There’s a link in the tweet.

    Davethulhu (6ba00b)

  155. The right defends lying ted and over at du the democrats defend cuomo. nuff said.

    asset (13bc5f)

  156. He was better than Trump.

    The clap is better than cancer.

    (h/t Ken White)

    lurker (59504c)

  157. Of course Ken was comparing Trump to Biden, not to Cruz. As an analog for Ted, the clap is too kind.

    How about testicular cancer is better than brain cancer?

    lurker (59504c)

  158. Thank you Dana.

    Sorry it took me a while to see this post.

    It’s been a better week than you’d think. No power for a while, it did get chilly but a couch full of family with a blanket is not that cold and we had some good laughs. We had a lot of branches fall, some on the roof. Nothing serious but it will need fixing. Don’t try to burn fresh trees inside guys. You’d um have to be an idiot to do that. 😶

    Helped the neighbor with a burst pipe, barely knew him before. Friends brought me more water. I stocked up some but it takes more than I had to keep cleaning the baby bottles. Roads have been very dangerous and the drivers very bad. The homeless around here haven’t all found shelter. The city has attracted so many, given them these nice tents that they don’t want to leave (because other homeless will take their stuff) and it’s just been way too cold, so there were some unhappy endings. It went from 75 to 7 in about a week.

    I guess I’m supposed to be mad that Ted Cruz is a pathetic politician, but the part that annoys me most about him is that he crawled back here from Mexico. So OK, he is pretty pathetic. But I do not need another politician handing water bottles to old ladies for Facebook or tweeting that they personally are to thank for some donation they didn’t make. This scandal is all about rituals that don’t matter to me in these emergencies.

    Dustin (4237e0)

  159. So … what’s the story with Kanye West still wearing his wedding ring despite all the talk about divorcing Kim Kardashian?

    Dude, who gives a proverbial #$@% about that, when Britney Spears is still languishing in white slavery to her father?

    Dave (1bb933)

  160. Wasn’t Ted the great hope that should have been the pick instead of DJT in 2016? For everyone that loved TC then was he always a scumbag and you just were fooled or has he been bodysnatched?

    frosty (f27e97) — 2/18/2021 @ 5:37 pm

    We were fooled.

    Of course, we figured it out. You’re still carrying water for Trump.

    Dustin (4237e0)

  161. Time123 (653992) — 2/18/2021 @ 6:12 pm

    I suppose small is relative. You’ve said small but it needs to be large enough to deal with large scale natural disasters. That isn’t a small government. Responding to major national disasters on a government level means FEMA. Regulations that might have prevented this also aren’t the result of a small government.

    This is sort of like saying you want a small military that is capable waging a world war on two fronts.

    The small government version is saying people, individuals and families, should have been prepared but you’ve said that is unreasonable. It’s only unreasonable because you think these are issues that can only be dealt with by a large collective response or because it sounds like blaming the victim.

    Again, this sounds more like small government except for this sort of reasoning.

    I don’t disagree with you on TC. He should have stayed and at least tried to help. I think this is more of an executive branch FEMA thing but that doesn’t mean it’s a good idea for him to go on vacation.

    frosty (f27e97) — 2/18/2021 @ 7:23 pm

    That part in bold sounds nice to me. But it doesn’t seem reasonable to adopt that as the expectation in the middle of a major issue that affects the entire state. There are a lot of places people live that they probably wouldn’t if they knew that the needed to be able to provide their own heat, water and waste disposal. Many of those places are in Texas.

    WRT to how small I’d like the government to be; smaller. A lot smaller. I don’t see much need for a larger department of education for example. If we have to have one I want it to run honestly and efficiently and accomplish whatever mandate my fellow citizens set for it through the political process. But I don’t think we need one.

    Time123 (d1bf33)

  162. Dustin, I’m glad that you and your family are doing ok. Wish I were in a position to provide more then that.

    Time123 (d1bf33)

  163. Dude, who gives a proverbial #$@% about that, when Britney Spears is still languishing in white slavery to her father?

    Hmmm, maybe Cruz can get out of this political mess if he got some poor schmuck put a tearful “Leave Ted Alone!” video on Twitter.

    Paul Montagu (77c694)

  164. Good to hear from you, Dustin.

    nk (1d9030)

  165. Time123 (d1bf33) — 2/19/2021 @ 4:33 am

    But it doesn’t seem reasonable to adopt that as the expectation in the middle of a major issue that affects the entire state.

    In my experience it’s one of the best times to have the discussion. When everyone is well fed, warm, and happy no one wants to talk about preparing for emergencies.

    frosty (f27e97)

  166. Dustin (4237e0) — 2/19/2021 @ 12:04 am

    Hopefully you’re safe and warm.

    frosty (f27e97)

  167. The CDC has a webpage on how to prepare for a zombie invasion with all kinds of suggestions and checklists to prepare for any emergency.

    Echo (35dc65)

  168. What strikes me is the sheer chutzpah of thinking he could get away with it.

    Echo (35dc65)

  169. Stolen from twitter: “Slinking back from Cancun in shame is a very Texan thing to to.”

    Time123 (ae9d89)

  170. If Ted were the governor or mayor it would be different.

    BillPasadena (5b0401)

  171. BillPasadena (5b0401) — 2/19/2021 @ 7:55 am

    If Ted were the governor or mayor it would be different.

    If we didn’t have Cruz to talk about people might wonder why Joe is taking a nap.

    President Biden took a snow day Thursday as DC received a half-inch dusting — but Vice President Kamala Harris carried on with scheduled in-person events.

    It was Biden’s second snow day this month.

    Biden, 78, spent Thursday morning receiving his daily intelligence briefing and a closed-door briefing on COVID-19. He had no scheduled events or briefings on his public schedule in the afternoon.

    frosty (f27e97)

  172. It, the Cancun trip I mean, is a “fun fact” for people who actively dislike Cruz. I’ve seen tweets that he “threw his daughters under the bus” and a newspaper story that he left the dog home alone.

    I guess I do not actively dislike him, merely just not like him, because I think it, the whole kerfuffle I mean, is picayunish, trivial and inconsequential, not to mention piddling and trifling.

    nk (1d9030)

  173. Ted’s not-so-excellent Mexican adventure

    In the middle of an unprecedented natural disaster in his state, the Texas Republican jetted off to Cancun with his family. (Rule #1 of public life: Always show your face during a crisis.)

    Then, he implied he was only planning to accompany his wife and daughters to the Mexican resort city and then return to Texas the next day.

    All available evidence, independent reporting, and sheer common sense contradicted that explanation — which is why Cruz took it all back when he landed in Houston last night and embarked on an apology media tour. There are some lessons to be learned here for any politician; let’s take a closer look.

    It sends a terrible message to your constituents when you’re fleeing the state (the country!) while they’re suffering from widespread power outages, sub-freezing temperatures with no ability to heat their homes, and a shortage of food — and it doesn’t matter the reason. At best, it’s political malpractice; at worst, all-out negligence. But it’s not just about the optics here.

    Some defenders of Cruz have insisted that senators don’t play a big role anyway when their state is ravaged by mother nature. But that couldn’t be further from the truth. Senators wield tremendous power during these events, often coordinating with the federal government on recovery and response efforts to supplement state-level work. In this case, Texas needs all the federal help it can get, as it deals with severe damage to its infrastructure and the power grid. It’s also one of the few times when lawmakers put their political differences aside and work together on behalf of their shared constituents — often in life-or-death circumstances.
    ………
    Sometimes the headlines just write themselves.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  174. It, the Cancun trip I mean, is a “fun fact” for people who actively dislike Cruz. I’ve seen tweets that he “threw his daughters under the bus” and a newspaper story that he left the dog home alone.

    I guess I do not actively dislike him, merely just not like him, because I think it, the whole kerfuffle I mean, is picayunish, trivial and inconsequential, not to mention piddling and trifling.

    nk (1d9030) — 2/19/2021 @ 8:37 am

    It goes to character in a slightly different way than we typically talk about it. Some people would have felt that as a leader they needed to take what actions they could to help during the emergency. Ted went on vacation. Ted went with his wife and kids on vacation. It’s not a dereliction of duty, but is selfish and weak leadership on his part.

    Time123 (d1bf33)

  175. Oh, his repeated lies about it are another indication of weak character.

    First it was a long planned trip.
    Then it he was just helping his daughters fly down.
    Then it turned out his wife organized it.

    Would probably have been better politically to just own it and avoid the steady stream of new info.

    Time123 (d1bf33)

  176. Dustin, I’m glad that you and your family are doing ok. Wish I were in a position to provide more then that.

    Time123 (d1bf33) — 2/19/2021 @ 4:34 am

    Life is very good, my friend!

    We have it made. The snow is melting and it’s a dramatic sight watching all these huge icicles fall.

    I hope DRJ is OK. Winter in west texas can be awful because of the wind.

    Dustin (4237e0)

  177. Dustin,

    So glad you and the family are well. I asked P if he had spoken with you and if you were all doing fine. I was worried about the babies.

    As someone going through the storm and seeing its impact first-hand, what do you wish to see the state of Texas do with regard to changing systems and/or practices that could help mitigate the impact (and subsequent aftermath) in the future?

    Dana (fd537d)

  178. What can a member of Congress do to help during an emergency, anyway?
    ……
    “The crisis here in Texas — you need to be here on the ground,” Cruz said, pushing back on host Sean Hannity’s assertion that he could have teleworked from Mexico. “As much as you can do by phone and Zoom, it’s not the same as being here.”

    Part of the job of an elected official is to set an example. They’re often seen handing out supplies, or volunteering at places of refuge. Cruz’s 2018 election opponent, former congressman Beto O’Rourke (D-Tex.), who doesn’t even hold elected office any more, said on Twitter Friday that his efforts to use his platform as a well-known politician to organize phone banks to check in with Texas senior citizens resulted in 784,000 welfare check calls being made to the state’s elderly population, connecting citizens with food, water and warming centers.

    And while being “on the ground” while your state faces a weather disaster might seem like Politics PR: 101, it isn’t just about appearances……

    “There are official things that you need to be doing in terms of coordination of federal resources, but there’s also a lot of outreach you can be doing that isn’t just performative,” (Matt Dennis, a communications consultant with CRD Associates and former Congressional press aide) said. “It’s meaningful when an elected official feels people’s pain and sees what they are going through.”
    …….
    “It’s always more effective when the senator is making those calls than when their staff is,” he said. “A senator can get through to the head of FEMA, or to the White House, when their staff might not be able to.”
    ……..
    “I’ve been in public service for 20yrs, 12 elected,” wrote Texas state Rep. Armando Walle on Twitter. “You have to be present, be aggressive and work your ass off for your people. You stay on the phones w/ Mayors, County Judges, Governor so that when resources are distributed your community is not left out.”
    >>>>>>>>>
    Given how close Cruz was to losing his last Senate race, you would think that he would have been the first one out organizing, instead of his last opponent.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  179. 169.What strikes me is the sheer chutzpah of thinking he could get away with it.

    Why; Canadians have been letting Americans pay the freight to ‘defend’ them for decades.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  180. Dana, the babies lacked for nothing. Their mom stressed tons making sure of it, but the kids are OK. I really appreciate the kind thoughts, not just from folks here, but friends from school. If the country could just snap out of the degree of partisanship that keeps it divided it’s actually a really great place.

    As someone going through the storm and seeing its impact first-hand, what do you wish to see the state of Texas do with regard to changing systems and/or practices that could help mitigate the impact (and subsequent aftermath) in the future?

    A few things: Texans need to think much more about prep for anything. The population is growing and the infrastructure hasn’t kept up. It would be nice if we could improve it, but there will be too many fights and legit challenges and I am sure the next disaster will be ‘unexpected’ and ‘unprecedented’ except it’s kinda becoming the norm. People need to be ready. Not for the next winter disaster, but for whatever. We each need to be able to take care of the necessities if nothing outside our scope of control works. No heat, energy, roads, communication, grocery store, water supply, and skills/tools. I had a lot of food and water, but not a generator or a way to clean a lot of water. Sad to say but my lesson here is to rely even less on anything.

    My local suburb government doesn’t pay its leaders, and they are mostly funded by developers. There’s been a long running problem with the water supply here. If the power goes out to the plant, we boil our water. The town has quadrupled in size too, so the system just can’t keep up.

    Austin had no way to isolate the actual critical infrastructure, so I know lots who had no outages and I know lots who had no power for over two days. I know a lot of buildings had physical breakers so I imagine people could have manually isolated, but it would have been very difficult to keep rolling blackouts that way. Without the flexibility they kinda did the best they could and the outcome wasn’t great. I know one hospital lost power, for example.

    If they can consider a wider range of temps for power generators that’s great, but it got very very cold. Things broke that I didn’t expect to, partly just from all the moisture pushed out of the air when it goes from 75 to 7 degrees. I’m skeptical they can actually make it so everything works in a complicated nuclear power plant or gas power plant in the hottest and coldest extreme. Some kind of hardening would be great but I don’t really know what is appropriate and what’s just fantasy.

    However, if Texas could be connected to the larger grid, so if our power failed, that would be helpful. I know this is Texas sacriledge and perhaps this isn’t worth it, but it sure would have been handy.

    A lot of cops slept at the station, and a lot of stations did not have running water. A lot of homeless live in tents they refuse to leave (because another homeless person will steal their things). I think some of the homeless need to be institutionalized, others just need some help, but a ton of them are actual bums. People who just choose to not work. They wind up deteriorating. Homelessness means more injuries and stress, until they can’t recover from bad choices. Some of these people need to be pushed to get it together, instead of handed a tent and a space heater and a hamburger. Homeless camps should be banned, except in some central designated location that has the basics, but also pushes people to get it together, get clean and get working. Right now Austin keeps buying hotels to fill with 60 homeless, spread out as far as possible. This is much more difficult to send cops, EMS, etc to on short notice. It’s a neat anti-nimby thing that is totally impractical and extremely expensive. And in the awful weather these little stresses add up.

    Also everyone in Texas should have their driver’s license revoked. I think I’m joking.

    Dustin (4237e0)

  181. @Dustin@181 I’m glad you and your family are doing OK. Texas probably needs to look at what works in Nebraska, Kansas, Colorado and Missouri, which all have very wide temperature differences from the far below zeros into the upper 90s (which I know isn’t as hot as Texas, but still). A lot of it is things like burying pipes and powerlines, IIRC, which is more expensive but not high tech or fancy or anything.

    Nic (896fdf)

  182. Oh yeah, nic. Those spigots you can drain, having water cutoffs to the unheated pipes in the house, I don’t have any of that, and I’ll definitely be installing them.

    The frost line at my property is five inches so it’s not entirely possible to build here like they do there, but hopefully some civil engineer has some ideas.

    Dustin (4237e0)

  183. As Texas deep freeze subsides, some households now face electricity bills as high as $10,000

    As the Texas power grid collapsed under a historic winter storm, Jose Del Rio of Haltom City, in the Dallas-Fort Worth area, saw the electricity bill on a vacant two-bedroom home he is trying to sell slowly creep up over the past two weeks. Typically, the bill is around $125 to $150 a month, he said. But his account has already been charged about $630 this month — and he still owes another $2,600.
    ……
    When he contacted Griddy, his electric company, they advised him to switch providers, Del Rio said.

    Griddy’s prices are controlled by the market, and are therefore vulnerable to sudden swings in demand. With the extreme weather, energy usage has soared, pushing up wholesale power prices to more than $9,000 per megawatt hour — compared to the seasonal average of $50 per megawatt hour.
    …….
    Customers outside the ERCOT service area have also been hit with sticker shock. Veronica Garcia, a Reliant Energy customer in Mansfield, Texas, told NBC News her bill is projected to be twice as much as she typically pays a month for electricity. She last paid $63 on Feb. 11 to power her one-bedroom apartment, but her bill is projected to be between $114 and $133 in March, according to documents reviewed by NBC News.
    …….
    Texas laws protect consumers from companies exploiting natural disasters for profit, but it is unclear if those laws can be extended to protect electric customers slapped with large bills, said Keegan Warren-Clem, a managing attorney at the nonprofit Texas Legal Services Center.

    Federal programs such as the low-income housing energy assistance program might protect energy customers who qualify from the high charges, she said. If they don’t qualify for the federal program, a customer can look into bill assistance programs through charities or churches, she said.

    “There are limited options available in the absence of action at the state level to provide consistent relief,” Warren-Clem said.
    ……
    Royce Pierce and his wife, Danielle, who live in Willow Park, west of Dallas, have been watching their electricity bill tick up by nearly $10,000 in the last few days for their three-bedroom home. While the family told NBC News they consider themselves lucky because they’ve had power, the financial burden has come with additional challenges.

    Since the family is on a variable rate plan with Griddy, the company automatically debits the bill as they use electricity. Danielle said she closed the debit card connected to their electricity bill because Griddy wiped it out. The family has been using separate accounts and credit cards to pay for necessities as the storm goes on.
    …….

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  184. Why winterize your electric grid if the consequence of not doing it is you get to price gouge people trying to stay warm?

    Dustin (4237e0)

  185. @182- They were told in 2011.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  186. @184 10,000?!!!!!!!!!

    (also, I love how they say the Texas people have thousands and thousands in overcharging and then, but it isn’t just ERCOT customers, this other person’s bill is going up by $60)

    Nic (896fdf)

  187. Cruz says he has ‘no defense’ for mocking California’s past power outages as Texas’ grid falters amid historic freeze

    Confronted with his mocking last year of California over that state’s power outages during a heat wave, Texas Sen. Ted Cruz late on Tuesday said he had “no defense” for his past criticism as Texas’ power grid falters amid a historic winter storm.

    “I got no defense,” the Republican wrote on Twitter, quoting a news story about others highlighting his jabs at California. “A blizzard strikes Texas & our state shuts down. Not good.”
    ……..
    That scrutiny has come, in part, over some Republicans’ past responses to disasters in other states.

    Cruz, among others, received criticism for his opposition to certain federal aid to states hit by Hurricane Sandy in 2012. The senator also earned blowback for the taunts he aimed at California last year, when that state endured power outages during a severe heat wave.
    ……..

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  188. Ted Cruz just named the top Republican on the Senate Aviation Subcommittee

    https://twitter.com/elwasson/status/1362881426769772544

    Memo to writers: This is too on the nose, nobody will believe it.

    Davethulhu (6ba00b)

  189. The other thing you gotta look out for is the company you find yourself in:

    People Want Justice For Snowflake, Ted Cruz’s Dog Who Did Not Go To Cancun
    Snowflake was left in the care of a dogsitter, a spokesperson said, but a photo of the dog looking sad drew a lot of attention on Twitter.

    nk (1d9030)

  190. Kim Kardashian West files for divorce from Kanye West

    i hope youre happy now mr nk

    Dave (1bb933)

  191. Beard Bros clearly not in sync message wise.

    urbanleftbehind (21c21b)

  192. urbanleftbehind (21c21b) — 2/19/2021 @ 6:52 pm

    So it was a Democrat’s fault after all…

    I knew it all along!

    Dave (1bb933)

  193. He (DJT) Jr best watch it on those cracks…he may be soon be culked by an “immigrant” wife just like Abbott and McConnell.

    urbanleftbehind (8c58b4)

  194. Mommy Issues Jr. claims he was talking about Cuomo, in which case it doubly serves him right for pulling the squirrel.

    nk (1d9030)

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