San Marcos Mercury | Local News from San Marcos and Hays County, Texas



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SHOP TALK by BRAD ROLLINS

If you happen to pick up today’s edition of the San Marcos Daily Record, you can read a hard-hitting piece about the newspaper’s own publisher receiving an award from San Marcos CISD for printing PR fluff about local schools. You can read a few press releases on the front page from the city of San Marcos about community development block grants and an upcoming budget workshop. There’s also a handful of obituaries and Dear Abby and a crossword puzzle, if that’s your thing.

But you won’t read a word — not a single word — about the San Marcos police corporal accused of brutally assaulting a 22-year-old woman in the course of arresting her on trumped up charges. Or about a new rehab hospital being built in Kyle. Or about a historic Latino cemetery being designated a state historical landmark.

Since I founded the Mercury in 2008, we have consistently covered more of the stories that matter to San Marcos and covered them better than our competitors — despite being out-staffed and out-spent by an absurdly lopsided margin. The Mercury is a labor of love — a calling as much as it is a company — and both the cause and effect of great personal sacrifice not just for me but for Bill Peterson, Hap Mansfield and the other good people who have worked over the years to make the Mercury what it is.

In addition to our staff-produced content, the Mercury has become an important hub of community discussion where people can speak their mind and be heard to a degree not possible before the digital age. That commitment to uncensored discourse, in and of itself, has changed San Marcos for the better.

Our formula — imaginative, incisive original content accompanied by a chorus of community voices — has made the San Marcos Mercury hands-down the dominant source of news and opinion for San Marcos and surrounding areas. We plan to stay on top. Today, I’m asking for your help to make sure that happens.

The Internet media landscape has matured significantly in the last five years and we’re maturing with it. In 2008, the idea of paying for online news was virtually unheard of; the few media outlets that had attempted it had failed miserably at doing so. In the last few years, however, newspapers and magazines large and small have gone to paid subscriptions. We’re following suit — to a certain extent.

Under a new model we are launching today, many of the stories that matter most to San Marcos will continue to be made available free to our community. But other elements of our coverage will be rolled into a new premium service we’re calling MercuryPro.

Subscriptions will cost $50 a year or $10 a month. Some stories will be published first on MercuryPro and then made available free on the legacy Mercury website, the idea being that paying customers get the benefit of getting the news first. Sometimes, breaking news will be published first on the Mercury and more comprehensive followups will be available only to MercuryPro subscribers. Other content will be made available exclusively to MercuryPro subscribers, especially our growing collection of databanks that we’re forging into a valuable resource for atprofessionals and the professionally curious — auto sales, real estate trends, building permits, etc.

That’s the basic shape of it. We’ll figure out the details as we go along just as everyone else in digital media is doing. All of this is uncharted territory not just for San Marcos but for the world at-large.

You’d be hard-pressed to find a locally oriented Internet newspaper anywhere — anywhere — that has thrived like the Mercury has; I am proud of the place we have carved out as digital pioneers — hardy and headstrong, if sometimes hungry. MercuryPro will allow us to take the San Marcos Mercury to the next level by giving us the resources we need to beef up staff and expand our coverage.

None of these changes are going to happen overnight. We’ll implement our new model in phases over the next 30 days — and rely on feedback from our readers along the way to make sure we strike the right balance.

In the meantime, if you believe in the Mercury and believe the Mercury is important to San Marcos, why don’t you go ahead and sign up? I look forward to seeing you on the other side of this transition as we continue the exciting work of telling San Marcos’ incredible story.

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44 thoughts on “Brad Rollins’ Blog: Introducing MercuryPro

  1. Best of luck to you and your SM Daily Record/Austin Statesman business model. Hope it works for you.

  2. Thanks, Lila. I’m getting good response. I think it differs somewhat from the SM Daily Record model in that virtually everything they print is behind a paywall. And once you subscribe to SMDR, which I do, you have to navigate an awkward and cumbersome E-edition that simply wasn’t designed for web viewing.

    Again, I appreciate your supportive comment and look forward to seeing your subscription come through :-) As your former next door neighbor, I’ll even extend a discount if you’re interested.

  3. San Marcos needs better media and especially good journalism!!! (Ironic in the shadow of a major university – shame on SWT/TxSt!!!)

    I believe that an interactive model (allowing comments and dialogue via internet) is more constructive (better) than a static model (i.e. print the paper, deliver the paper, repeat). Social media (FaceBook, et al) might appear to work but these lack the value of “good journalism” (yes, there is such a thing as “good journalism”).

    Your challenge Brad, (may I call you Brad?), is to deliver good journalism. This means real reporting, real investigations, critical analysis, and actually very few press releases.

    The good news is that you have a revenue model that might pay for real journalism, please use it!

  4. Mike, Of course you can call me Brad and we’ll do our best to live up to your challenge. Now plunk down your credit card and take the plunge into MercuryPro.

  5. I understand that there is a business to be run here, but I have a hard time with the concept of paying for internet news…..not when every TV news station on the planet has a free news site and I can get national news (however skewed) from CNN or Fox.

    I know the almost-Daily Record started charging for access to its stories a while back – and I haven’t been to their site since. I’ve always seen newspapers charging for online subscriptions as sort of a desperation move to prop up dwindling print sales and ad revenue.

    I know last time I hired someone I contacted the Record about a help wanted ad and it was going to be $300 to run a help wanted ad for two weeks. I told them “no thanks,” put a free ad on Craigslist, and had 80 resumes and a hire inside of a week. All that is to say that the business model long employed by newspapers is obsolete in today’s media environment.

    Given that this site doesn’t have to prop up a print version, and that there are relatively few sources for local news out there, perhaps the move has a chance of working. It’s just not for me. I’ve enjoyed this site since its inception (Newstreamz, anyone?) and hope to continue to enjoy whatever content is accessible to me….but I don’t see myself signing up for a sub.

    Sorry, Brad :-(

  6. $50 per year — just about a dollar a week. I’ll do that. Much better than the Statesman’s $10 per month, AND where 99% of the stories are now “premium.”

  7. I used to hit the Statesman several times a day but now I click it every couple days. I’ve been tempted to subscribe but the price is too damn high. I seldom went to the SMDR web site and never go now with the paywall. I have subscribed off and on to their print edition over the years and they never seemed to care if I came or went. I mostly considered my subscription a charity toward an enterprise I’d like to see continue but not as a real value for my dollar. One of my main reasons for clicking the Mercury is for the comments and I’m afraid those will dwindle if you put up a paywall.

  8. Can’t we have a BBQ fundraiser for the SMPRO instead, I haven’t looked at the daily record since they started charging, I will never enter a credit card number into the internet. Especially to an outlet with reporters I like to poke fun at.

  9. MercuryPro takes Paypal.

    I signed up. I haven’t always been thrilled with the coverage here, but there was about as much as I could expect from a free site. Probably more. I often wished the decision about what to cover was different, but perhaps with some more revenue, there will be broader coverage and more of the stuff I care about will turn up here.

    I’d say I’ve gotten at least $50 worth of value over the years, so even if this is a bust, I’m ahead. When that subscription runs out, we’ll see how I feel about the value.

  10. Maybe Brad can have an online poll for favorite commenters and offer a free subscription to keep Dano in the mix. It is too bad that the add-driven model has not generated sufficient cash flow, but that is true of a lot of internet projects it seems. If this is what the Mercury has to do to stay viable, then I will likely follow Ted’s cautious support.

  11. Luckily, a fair number people are in the Marchut-Skeptical camp and I thank you all.

    People are still so accustomed to free information online that there’s a natural resistance to paying for it. When I was at the Free Press, I fought tooth-and-nail to keep them from implementing a paywall because I thought it would be disastrous. As recently as a year ago, I said there’s no way that I’d charge for content on the Mercury.

    But the tech business is about constant change and this is the direction the industry has taken. I think once people see how this works in practice, the not-now-not-ever people will relax. There will still be relevant and important content available for free on the Mercury. But people who want to dig deeper, businesses who want easy access to a one stop-shop trove of digestible and downloadable data for every city and county in the I-35 corridor, residents who understand that the Mercury has performed an invaluable service for years and that our city would be much worse off without us — those people will pay and I will be thankful to each one of them.

    Some people are going to withhold payment in hopes that we abandon the idea. We will not. My intent is to make the Mercury ever more irresistible such that anyone who wants to be take part in San Marcos public life will pay their $50 and be happy to do it. It’s early still, in other words.

    Dano and SMSince95, I hope you’ll find reason to stick around for our continued free content. I think you’ll come around but, if you don’t, there will be other voices emerge to replace yours.

  12. I’ll pay for it, if you step up your CC & PZ reporting, it’s been lacking as of late ya know ;-)Oh I also want my Vodka St. Coupons back ~ ha!

    Dano’s voice has already been replaced ~ the way they posted back when the Buie tract rezoning was going on is a complete different person than the current Dano…or one who since then has totally changed their values. I bumped into this about a month ago doing research when capstone collegiate got really serious about developing on Phase one…the difference in posting style is unreal ~

    http://smmercury.com/2010/10/20/quote-corner-543/

  13. @ skeptical: I know I’m fairly prolific as a commenter here, but I’m sure that there would be just as many people willing to pay Brad to keep me *away* as there would be to keep me around, if not more. :-) That being said, I’m genuinely flattered at your post and I thank you for the sentiment.

    @ Brad: I understand that you’re working in a fluid business environment and things have to change to keep this as a viable business enterprise for you. I would never expect a business owner to forego the need to generate revenue for his or her business just because of old paradigms of a handful of the users. I also realize that as long as I’m not ponying up, I’m not a “customer”, but a “user” – using up resources of your business but not generating any revenue for it. That’s not the type of person you can plan a successful business model around.

    I’m certainly not saying “not now, not ever”….think of it as a “not right now, maybe later” from me. I may just need some time to wrap my head around how I really feel about it. You hit the nail on the head when you said “people are accustomed to free information online that there’s a natural resistance to paying for it.” That’s where I am right now.

    In the meantime, I’ll certainly be checking in to see what I can still see and offer my mostly-meaningless opinions whenever I see fit.

  14. I never said I wouldn’t join. In fact, I went all the way through, filled in all the blanks, just to realize I don’t recall my PayPal info. I’ll dig it up and opt in for a year. I sincerely want you to be successful Brad.

  15. I appreciate your dedication to every word that comes out of my mouth, Melissa. It was me then, same as it is today. I was against the development of the Buie tract based on the facts and circumstances of that particular development. I’ve been for other developments since then because of *their* facts and circumstances.

    I happen to think that “right across the street from campus” is a great place for student housing and I think the neighborhood acted in anything but good faith in “negotiating” with Casey on his deal.

    I also supported development of Cape’s Camp because I think the I35 frontage is a good place for a development like this, I thought it was a waste for City to put up cash to buy the land when the best part was being offered for free, and I thought it was silly for neighborhoods over a mile away to be complaining about their “quality of life”.

    The Buie deal was altogether different. The surrounding community got sold a bill of goods on that deal, for reasons you already know.

    That’s the difference between being an objective observer and being blindly anti-growth. It doesn’t always have to be “not here, not now, not ever”.

  16. Reports are coming out that we are overbuilt, and apartments are bracing for the lowest occupancy rates they’ve ever seen, with something approaching 4,000 new bedrooms about to come online.

    Maybe we’ll get to argue about something new for awhile. It’s probably about time to offer some tax breaks for a laser tag facility.

  17. Hey, I would be all for just about whatever it takes to get some family friendly entertainment here in San Marcos – it sucks to have to go to San Antonio or Austin for virtually everything for the kids.

    Yeah, we’ve got a river, but between terrain, the nature of rivers, and the crowds, that’s not really a safe place for kids – especially small ones. I’m not asking for a theme park here….but a skating rink, a putt putt course, a Chuck E Cheese – ANYTHING beats what we currently have…..

  18. I could say that you should have known, when you moved to a college town, that we would have college-oriented entertainment, and that it was no secret that we don’t have a lot of family-oriented anything here. Most families know better than to settle down in San Marcos.

    :-)

  19. Yeah, but don’t tell me the college kids wouldn’t be all over a putt putt course or a Dave & Buster’s….heck, do you realize that we don’t even have a pizza place in town that offers a buffet anymore (outside of Gumby’s and theirs is only lunch)?

  20. I don’t know. We had an arcade, with laser tag, and a roller rink. I don’t remember anyone, other than my roommate, who had a job passing out tokens, caring.

    Unfortunately, you blow through your money playing at Dave and Buster’s about twice as fast as you earn it working there. Until we get some decent jobs for the students, I don’t know if they would spend enough to support it.

    I can’t remember any good pizza buffets in our past. Gatti’s, Double Dave’s, CiCi’s – don’t miss any of them.

    Valentino’s had a buffet, once upon a time. Did they kill that?

  21. As long as they have Daddy’s credit card, they’ll spend. How else do you think the square stays packed every weekend? Half of those kids don’t even work….but I do take your point about D&B – an evening there can be expensive.

    Panhandler’s tried the concept of a “nice” pizza buffet here in town. But “nice” pizzas (premium ingredients, etc) don’t hold up under heat lamps – these pizzas are just better fresh. Plus, no one wants to pay $10.99 for a pizza buffet and you can’t sell premium pizzas on a $5.99 buffet.

    I don’t necessarily miss the pizza aspect of places like Gatti’s or CiCi’s, but I miss going somewhere that I could feed the family for $25 and then let them go play a couple video games before we leave….

    The arcade just got drowned out by the bars in the area – once the square wasn’t kid (or teen) friendly, Diversions’ days were numbered. I don’t know what happened to the roller rink – maybe they’re just dinosaurs because there aren’t ANY closer to us than San Antonio, and even in SA (with almost 2 million people), they only have 2, I think.

  22. I’ve heard roller rinks are hard to insure. As to video games, it seems what kids have at home are so much better they don’t want to go to an arcade. ZDT’s is fun but their games are “off-brand” and it’s expensive.

  23. Oh Dano so does love self flattery ;-)

    I for one am so glad you tried to protect my neighborhood by blogging, can’t believe you’ve been FOR every student housing development since then, even the Retreat which is basically the same sensitive land and the same neighborhood ~ what’s up w/ that one? Just curious…or maybe you did argue against it, I as only looking at Buie tract stuff since it was up at CC for review and a reporter asked me for news links.

    I’m waiting to see too Brad…waiting for some coverage of the updates to the LDC per Master Plan, the Charter Review amendments being cussed and discussed, the fact that the City Planners want to move City Hall downtown, and update on who has filed to run for CC as I’m losing track of rumors vs. actually announcements at this point.

    I know not everyone cares THAT much about local politics, but the Record is at least making mention of a lot of this stuff and here ~ nada. I’m not going to pay for both so I’ll have to decide to cancel SMDR and sign on with Mercury or not ~ I’d rather give the $ to you Brad ~ seriously.

  24. Sorry announced…not filed..I think it’s still to early for that.

  25. Melissa, I’ve got a story in the works about charter amendments plus video of your getting read the riot act by council member Porterfield. That alone is worth the price of admission, don’t you think? :-)

  26. I’m still freaking out about all the smiley faces Dano…and per the family talk above, me and my wife moved back to SM purposefully because we thought it was a great place to raise little ones….my daughter just hit double digits last month (!!!!) and have not regretted a single moment of the decision…

  27. It’s just a new trick I learned Keith….once the new wears off I’m sure I’ll quit. I do, after all, have an image to uphold…..

  28. Oh sheesh Brad, yes I angered Kim and she became unglued…I know why I made her mad, do you? I’m thick skinned I couldn’t care less if she goes home at night and sticks needles in a voodoo doll w/ my name on it ~ that’s her issue, not mine and I will never be anything less than cordial towards her.

    I personally think the most inexcusable rant was towards a large group of her constituents the meeting prior, when she spouted out her hate-filled propaganda and accused those who seek to protect neighborhoods and the environment of HATING students and totally dismissing their input b/c “she just doesn’t believe it”. Half the room was filled w/ faculty and staff at Texas State and WE hate students ~ come ON now.

    I sincerely hope she is Ok. But I sincerely believe she owes a large group of citizens who love San Marcos an apology to put things to right. Her recent actions are not befitting of a public official, it’s the dais not a stage for rage ~

  29. I’d love to see those two videos, considering I’ve heard she moved awhile back, to “get away from the renters.” Meanwhile, I’ve got an inbox full of complaints about The Retreat, again.

    I’m a vocal supporter of the university and students, but these large apartment complexes are not compatible with single family neighborhoods. When one of them is built and rented exclusively to students, you’ll get more complaints about students.

    I’d love to hear how Mrs. Porterfield would fix this. She is copied on most of the emails I see, and unlike Mr. Nuse and Chief Williams (among others), I have never seen her even reply.

  30. Ted, I believe the bigger story lies in the push as of late by some loud voices in our community to re-write history of the struggles of the last few years. I hear over and over again that those who seek to preserve San Marcos are “against students”. How does the saying go ~ If you repeat something enough it becomes truth?

    Students have long stood in unison with those that share their values of preservation and have even spoken at meetings in mass to try to make a difference. They add such enthusiasm, energy and new ideas to the fold and I am proud to call so many of them my friends.

    This is not a locals against students issue, this is a large segment of our community, which includes our students, who don’t wish to see this town or it’s river threatened or damaged anymore than it already has been.

    As for the “riot act” video, most feel that should stay in the city archives out of respect. I have known Kim for many years, she is a mother and has served our community for a very long time. No matter our differences I don’t believe she deserves such treatment from a “news outlet”, which is evidenced by the fact that it has not been reported. Is it worth the “price of admission”, I’m sure it will be Brad ~ appropriate?? Not. Sorry to disagree with you, even though I was the target of frustrations that have been brewing for a long time.

  31. You misunderstand, Melissa Derrick, about my motivations for posting these Porterfield Unchained videos. I applaud Kim for sticking up for Texas State students and other renters against the people in your camp who get up and say all sorts of things nasty things about them.

    Ted’s right. This is about poor land use and planning decisions made over the years. But so many “neighborhood folks” can’t resist the urge to denigrate people who cannot afford to own property. Kim didn’t imagine those comments. They were said at the meeting where she kind of got her dander up about people treating apartment residents as if they are lesser people. I’ll put those comments in the video as well so just so it’s clear what I’m talking about. They were along the lines of “Why don’t you support us, the real citizens of San Marcos, instead of people who care so little about the community that they won’t even buy a home here.” Every time a “real citizen of San Marcos” stands up and says something like that, the hair on the back of my neck stands up. So I was glad to see Kim address it forcefully.

    At the next meeting, I thought Kim’s points about your childish behavior on the Charter Review Commission were awesome. She’s did what the mayor should have done by telling you, “Melissa, you have no standing to get up and talk to us like this when you abdicated your responsibilities as a member of the charter review commission.” I think she’s basically functioning as a shadow mayor since our elected mayor, Daniel, is weak, ineffectual and apparently uninterested in anything that doesn’t involve having his photo taken and put in the paper. That’s good. We need someone to take charge up on the dais. I’ve given up any hope that Daniel will be anything more than a preening and grandstanding prop. Had I been presiding over the meeting, Melissa, I would have ordered you escorted from the chambers until you could cool down.

    (And that’s saying nothing about Daniel’s new job working for a company that functions as a hired gun for engineering companies and others that do business with the city. You’ll be reading a lot more about this travesty in the Mercury as well but I’m waiting until summer’s over so more people will be reading. My hope is that after I report some of what I’m learning about the mayor’s ethical challenges, he will do the right thing and resign.)

    I’m writing this on the fly as a I enjoy delicious sour cream enchiladas at Rogelios. I’ll be more articulate and comprehensive with a posting later with the video.

  32. Brad, it gets my dander up too, and I have loudly expressed that at many neighborhood meetings.

    That being said, it also gets my dander up when people take “the students aren’t the problem,” and turn that into “there is no problem,” or “the homeowners are the problem.” Council has a long history or taking that position, implicitly and sometimes explicitly.

    We’re no different than the students, the non-student renters, or anyone else, in that we will get defensive if attacked, perhaps more so, because (despite Dano’s assertions) it is not easy for most people to move away from the problem, once they buy a home.

    I don’t feel remotely better than people who can’t (or just don’t) buy property. I was here for a looooong time before I could afford it. I’ve done business with every pawn shop we had in the mid 90s. And even when I could afford it, I barely could. I mean barely. There were plenty of months when I wondered how we were going to cover everything, and I’ve done more payday advances than I care to admit.

    Since then, I have commuted to San Antonio for almost a decade, just so I could hold onto my home in San Marcos (because good jobs are so scarce here). That’s 50-60 hours per week in the office, and another 10-15 on the road – practically two full-time jobs. And don’t forget over $300 per month in gas, and using up cars like it is going out of style.

    I don’t feel better than anyone, but I have far more invested in this home than I can afford to lose, and given our economy, I suspect many of my neighbors would love to have it as easy as I do. I have heard of several neighbors’ houses going into foreclosure (I didn’t confirm, because it is none of my business), and I have seen some of their houses sit on the market (taken off and relisted over and over) for months and even years.

    No, the students are not the problem, but there is a problem, and getting all bent out of shape when people mistakenly blame the students just sounds like someone taking the easy way out – someone who can’t (or won’t) figure out how to fix it.

    The surest way to get people to stop blaming the students, is to fix the problem, so that nobody is looking for anyone to blame.

  33. Ted, as usual, I think you have a lot of insight in the dynamics here. There are many good things happening in the city of San Marcos but I agree with you that we should not just keep kicking this town/gown can down the road. Then again, another side of me wonders if these problems can be fixed because so many people (i.e. the old CONA guard, certain irresponsible elements of the development community, certain pseudo-environmentalists etc.) have so much to gain by keeping the problems simmering.

    I am inherently suspicious of comprehensive master plans in principle because I think they are detached from reality of how markets work and how development decisions are made. I think people really think the real world functions like the computer game Sim City where an all-powerful city government decides what building is put where in accordance with some utopian fever dream. I think comp plans reinforce that fallacy so I’m not a big fan of them in general.

    But now that we have a new comp plan — developed with a reasonable level of buy-in from different sections of the community — my hope is that it gives us some basis for fixing these problems as long as we can agree that it is a plan, not the infallible word of God. The comp plan, however, isn’t going to be worth a damn if we don’t have leadership to interpret and implement it. Which is why I’m just seething with rage against our mayor. San Marcos isn’t exactly burning but he’s sure fiddling. (When I think of Daniel I think of something someone once said about Bill Clinton. He “embodied the potential of a generation. So many talents. So much charm. Such great skill. But, in the end, to what end? So much promise, to no great purpose.”)

    My own fever dream is of a strong mayor who will inspire and intimidate and muscle and cajole — whatever is necessary when it becomes necessary — to move things forward, everything else be damned. When I see anyone trying to step up and lead this town like I saw in Kim at these recent meetings, it gives me hope even if her comments were imperfect and incomplete.

    Susan angered a lot of people during her three terms but I for one miss her every day. At least she gave a damn.

  34. Unfortunately, the message I get is that Kim only gives a damn about some of us, and I use “us” loosely, because I am pretty sure I am in her “them” bucket.

    There are good and bad students, good and bad non-students, and good and bad homeowners. I’m tired of suffering her wrath, because it’s convenient to lump us all together (all of us in this part of town, anyway).

    And it’s not just her. I recall a council member saying that The Retreat (I think that was the one) was a bad idea, but then voted for it to make a point to the homeowners who were complaining about students.

    Now, we have a bad development, causing problems for the neighbors, and it is full of students. Makes it tough for me to make the case at CONA, or anywhere else, that the students are not the problem, or that Council cares about us.

    That council member deliberately added to the problem, to make some kind of point. Not just the problem of bad development, but the problem of town/gown, us/them.

  35. The council member to whom you refer (Chris Jones) is no longer a council member. He’s a friend of mine but there’s a reason why he’s living in Baltimore now. So his vote and his motivations aren’t really germane to our future.

  36. Yes, but Kim does not need to be continuing that fight, even a little. Nobody on the dais does.

    History (not that distant history) like that is part of the damage that needs to be undone. Some of the current council were here for that, and all of them should be aware of it, and concerned about it. Trust needs to be won back.

    It is well and good to blame a handful of homeowners, but they have not been elected to lead the city, and LEADING us out of this mess is going to take leaving all of the bad feelings behind, and acknowledging all of the issues that need to be fixed. It’s going to mean patching things up and getting past the idea that some people are the enemy here.

  37. Well Brad once again we have a totally different opinion on things, I was not the only one who didn’t wish to sign the Charter. If you’d care to know the exact reasons you’d have to ask those who didn’t sign, as it would be bad form from a media outlet to report on such with only opinions and/or heresay. However you aren’t known so much for your “real reporting” as you are for slanted and sensationalized opinion pieces that you display as real reporting simply to boost your views and swoon advertisers and supporters. Sorry to disappoint you as there was no reason for anyone to be escorted out of the chambers or they would have been. I find it very telling that you plan to post this story just after you’ve asked everyone to pay for access and comment that it should be “worth the price of admission” ~ now that is childish.

    I was asked by the Chair of the Charter and the Mayor to report on the last meeting which I had chaired, and I did. The fact that the nepotism changes discussed in that meeting are offensive to CC, was shocking to the majority of Charter members who approved it at the first meeting.

    The comments of a few that are deemed as nasty toward students are only a tiny portion of the real concerns expressed by the majority of people who have shared values to preserve our rive/aquifer and to maintain the integrity of established single family neighborhoods. Your sensationalized slant on this upcoming story, in my opinion, is a painfully obvious “power vacuum play” leading up to the elections, in order to discredit any candidates who shares the values of a certain camp. You announced months ago that Jude Prather had told you there was a new power vacuum coming soon and you and he would be a big part of it ~ congratulations it appears that has come to fruition.

    As for the videos, I wasn’t able to look at the first video empathetically until after the 2nd of such outbursts which caused many to be concerned. Have fun with your mud slinging, I’ve never seen anyone enjoy it as much as you, but then most people don’t make profits for doing so.

  38. Ted, I’ve not said that I believe Kim is the Great Hope of San Marcos. Just that I’m heartened that someone on the city council is showing a pulse. I admittedly have low expectations for most of these guys but a council full of Melissa Derricks would be even worse.

    We’ll have to continue this later.

    I’m about to jump in the river with a net in hopes of catching an unsuspecting turtle while he suns on a log. I went to a pet store in New Braunfels the other day and the manager refused to sell me one of the two red eared sliders there because they were less than 4.5 inches in length. Apparently it’s against the law to sell tiny turtles now because kids were putting them in their mouths and getting salmonella poisoning. I assured him I had no intention of putting a live turtle in my mouth but he was unmoved.

  39. Ted you are awesome, I didn’t see your last couple of posts until now. I still maintain that YOU should run for office ~ I know, I know ~ but your diversity of opinion and clear headed thinking and ideas to set this town back to where it should be, unified and proud…well, you don’t see many folks that posses that positive, unified energy these days~!

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