Daily Newspaper and Travel Guide
for Pecos Country
of West Texas
Tuesday, November 11, 2003
By Smokey Briggs
Veterans' Day is Today.
The name tells most of the story. It is the day set aside to honor
those who serve in defense of our nation.
It seems like a simple task - a thank you from grateful countrymen.
But sometimes, our thank you does not seem to ring very loud.
Maybe it's because most of us do not get the day off from work.
Maybe it is because the holiday is always celebrated on November 11
instead of on the Friday or Monday closest to the 11th.
Rarely do folks get a three-day weekend out of the deal like we do
on the 4th of July and Labor Day.
November 11th was set aside as a holiday after World War I. On
November 11, 1918, at 11:00 a.m., (the eleventh hour of the eleventh
day of the eleventh month) the armistice was signed ending that War to
End All Wars.
In 1926, Americans officially began celebrating the 11th of
November. In 1938, November 11th became a national holiday and Congress
declared it, "Armistice Day."
Although primarily set aside to honor the veterans of World War I,
Congress later amended the law in 1954 so that it was set aside to
honor all veterans and Armistice Day became Veterans' Day.
Actually, it seems fitting that we do not create a three-day weekend
out of Veterans' Day. Somehow the reason behind the three-day holidays
seems to get lost amidst the hustle to do something with a three-day
And this one is important.
On thousands of battlefields all over this world, for more than two
hundred years, these men fought the battles that decided our fate as a
They have endured all that there is to endure as a soldier or sailor
or airman or Marine - from terror to boredom - bitter cold to scorching
heat - cramped quarters to biting loneliness - and the thousands of
other pains that go hand-in-hand with military service.
Some were drafted. Some volunteered. But all served. They did their
A simple "thank you" does not seem like enough.
But, I have it on good authority, that "thanks" will do just fine.
So, thank you one and all - those that are with us, and those that
have gone on. Today, the flag flies in your honor because you were
willing to defend her.
EDITOR'S NOTE: Smokey Briggs is the editor and publisher of
the Pecos Enterprise whose column appears on Tuesdays. He can be
e-mailed at: firstname.lastname@example.org
Weinacht - Galindo monitor-deal stinks
$61,000 a year for a hall monitor?
Ooops, we meant prison monitor.
But still, $61,000 annually with a ten-year contract - even for a
When the county is looking at laying off employees in nearly every
Having a prison "Monitor" on the county payroll to keep an eye on
Wackenhut's management of RCDC I and II (and maybe III if, and when
prisoners are found) might be a nice thing to have if you can afford
Reeves County cannot afford a window to throw things out of at the
Yet, at yesterday's county commissioners' meeting it came to light
that the contract with Wackenhut to take over management of RCDC I and
II (and make payments on the empty new wing - RCDC III - for 9 months)
includes a provision for a "Prison Monitor" that Reeves County will
Yesterday, our commissioners and county judge voted to hire local
attorney Bill Weinacht to be the new monitor.
Commissioners Hill and Tarin voted against the measure.
Commissioners Rayos and Arredondo voted for it. County Judge Jimmy
Galindo broke the tie in favor of Weinacht.
Weinacht previously has been employed by the county as special
counsel to RCDC, a position that under normal circumstances the elected
county attorney presumably would have done.
As special counsel he drew $50,000 annually.
Now, you cannot blame a man for taking a job with a $61,800 annual
salary. Especially when the job is part-time as this one is, as
presumably Weinacht will not give up his law practice as he fulfills
his duties as the Monitor.
That is good work if you can get it.
But you can blame the eggheads that hired him.
The court did not offer any convincing arguments supporting the need
for this position.
But, giving the devil his due, maybe there are some.
Even so, surely, in Reeves County, the court could have hired
someone competent to fulfill these duties for less than the cost of the
salaries of two or three of the county employees who are probably going
to loose their jobs in the coming months.
Maybe one of the folks soon to be cut by the county could have
filled the bill.
Maybe, the county judge or the commissioners could have "monitored"
the prison themselves.
Maybe, the court could have held off on hiring a monitor until there
appeared to be a need.
There are a lot of maybes.
One thing, however, is for sure - this deal stinks.
Local ctizens thanked for returned wallet
I would like to thank Efren Rodriguez and his wife, Mary for returning
my lost wallet shortly after I moved here from Great Falls, MT.
It was a wonderful welcome to my new community.
Concerned citizens ought to contact congressmen
In honor of Veteran's Day, being a veteran myself (U.S.A.F.-
1961-1965), I'm submitting this letter in memory of a friend killed in
the Korean war for whom I've installed an inscription in the General
Patton Memorial at Chiriaco Summit, California ( Butch Hallett from
South Gate, California) who left his indelible heritage in the mists of
time with The Carpenter of Nazareth when he died defending our country
because of U.N. restrictions on General Douglas Mac Arthur.
Consequently it is hard to express my outrage having to endure the
macabre spectacle of the War-Money-and Hatred debacle of the Bush
administration bombing innocent people in foreign countries (carrying
out U.N. directives) when the terrorist leaders should be taken out by
a one shot - one kill method by existing capable private contracting
counter-terrorist agents authorized by congress under the Marque and
reprisal provisions of The Constitution(Article-1 , Section-8) thus
insuring that the terrorist leaders are dead and innocents protected.
Bush's bombing of cities and countries to supposedly stop terrorist
leaders can be compared to bombing Chicago to get rid of Al Capone in
the 1920's which of course would have been absurd. Bush's oil and
construction company cronies are being given the contracts, on a no-bid
basis of course, to rebuild the destruction Bush's criminal war has
I cannot imagine a con-game more evil than this. Concerned citizens
should contact their congressmen at 1-877-762-8762 (toll-free) and
demand that congress investigate our intelligence agencies and
executive level of government for complicity in the 9-11 attacks,
invoke Marque & Reprisal instead of war, stop all foreign aid and
intervention, seal our borders(the terrorists are coming in), and Get
US out of the U.N.(call: 1-800-JBS-USA-1 for free U.N. information
packet or (see:www.getusout.org).
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York M. "Smokey" Briggs, Publisher
Division of Buckner News Alliance, Inc.
324 S. Cedar St., Pecos, TX 79772
Phone 432-445-5475, FAX 432-445-4321
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