Static: Wednesday, May 02, 2007
Courting Soccer Moms and Disaster

We all know the Star-Snoozagram ain’t too keen on covering Fort Worth political races these days. The soccer moms in Southlake — the North Texas readers with the most disposable time and income, and also, not incidentally, the apples of the Star-T’s eyes — don’t want to hear about some council race in a part of the county that they’ve been warned not to venture into with their kid-littered SUVs. Since the Metro section wasn’t covering the races, perhaps the daily’s editorial board writers would have picked up the slack and lived up to their campaign-time responsibility to provide endorsements. Keep dreaming. All of the incumbents got the nod, and even in District 5, where there is no incumbent running, they chose former councilman Frank Moss, who, by their own estimation, isn’t “particularly publicly persuasive or inspiring.” The opinion writers also pointed out that “independent oil and gas producer” Mayor Mike Moncrief has “made some missteps” but didn’t mention any specifics, such as the city employee pension crisis that happened under his watch or the creation of a natural gas task force (task farce, as referred to by critics and other people with common sense) that was heavily stacked with industry folks to clear the way for drilling in neighborhoods and to bowl over any dissenters. Even more despicably, the editorial writers never even mentioned his two opponents.

Likewise, they didn’t mention the opponents of council members Carter Burdette and Wendy Davis. When they did mention an opponent, they kissed them off without saying much about them. District 3 candidate Linda Ann Garcia, the editorial writers said, is “an appealing candidate with a solid career,” but they endorsed councilman Chuck Silcox. District 4 candidate Patrick Krick “appears capable of being an effective council member,” but the board went along with incumbent Danny Scarth. The message from the editorial board is clear: Everything in Cowtown is, in the words of Lawrence Welk, “wonderful, wonderful, wonderful.” So wunnerful, in fact, that voters don’t need to know who the mayor and some council members are running against.

Hmm, wonder if the editorial board even knows the two folks who are taking on Mayor Mikey? For the record, they’re Eastside activist, entrepreneur, and independent thinker Louis McBee and artist-designer Charles Hibbler.

Refreshment for a Rapist

William Ted Wilhoit, a habitual burglar, convicted rapist, and general psychopath — he once shot a woman in the face five times — was a scourge in Fort Worth back in the 1970s before he was sent to prison for 27 years. He was freed in 2003, and people wondered how long it would be before he reverted to his vicious ways. He was re-arrested on March 28 in Corpus Christi after being accused of something not nearly as hideous as raping and shooting women — he was busted for drinking a beer. But that’s OK. That dude needs to be slapped in cuffs whenever he breaks the rules of the state’s Super-Intensive Supervision Program, even when it’s for something as understandable as quenching a mighty thirst with the nectar of the gods.

Retired Fort Worth police Detective John Terrell is convinced that Wilhoit drugged, raped, and murdered 16-year-old Fort Worth resident Carla Walker back in 1974, although nobody was ever charged with the crime. These past few years, Terrell and others have kept an eye on Wilhoit, who must wear an ankle monitor and is restricted when traveling. A warrant was issued for his arrest after he was spotted at a store that wasn’t on his approved travel list and buying a beer, which also is forbidden. Now he’s sitting in the Nueces County pokey but not for long. The Texas Board of Pardons and Paroles discussed his beer-drinking episode this week and voted to let him out of jail but keep him under strict supervision. Terrell firmly believes that Wilhoit is a time-bomb. “He’ll do something worse,” Terrell said. “I’m surprised he hasn’t done it already.”

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