Texas Monthly's Paul Burka Echoes Chicken Little Over Tea Party Victories

Texas Monthly's Paul Burka Echoes Chicken Little Over Tea Party Victories

AUSTIN, Texas–Left-leaning Texas media wasted no time in attacking State Senator Dan Patrick after his victory in the Texas Republican primary runoff over Lt. Governor David Dewhurst. Perhaps the first shots were fired by Paul Burka on Texas Monthly’s Burka Blog.

In what can only be described as a real life version of “the sky is falling, the sky is falling,” Mr. Burka sounds biblical trumpets to warn all Texans of the coming apocalypse: 

The big winners from the primary runoff were Dan Patrick and the tea party. The big loser was the state of Texas, which sailed into unknown territory. The tea party, collectively, is in total control of the state, and the consequences are going to be staggering. All state services are in peril, in particular, the public schools. It’s the revenge of the know-nothings.

Mr. Burka, seemingly confusing Patrick’s belief in the rule of law in terms of immigration with someone actually hating immigrants, referred to Patrick as “aggressively anti-immigrant.” Of course those of us in-the-know realize that Dan Patrick has been clear about being very pro-immigrant. Patrick simply stands against illegal immigration.

Mr. Burka went as far as indirectly attacking Patrick for his past mental health battles. Burka changed from channeling the spirit of Chicken Little to following a few of Barack Obama’s 2008 campaign tactics against John McCain. Just as Obama would never say McCain was too old directly–simply utilizing the traits attached to the elderly to attack McCain in speeches–Burka wrote, “I have serious doubts about whether the tea party can govern or whether Patrick can get along with his peers without having a meltdown along the way.”

A “meltdown?” Maybe Mr. Burka forgot that millions of Americans struggle with depression and other related mental health issues? Did Mr. Burka forget that we, as Americans, celebrate people who have overcome such personal issues to go on in life and become valuable members of society? Patrick came forward and acknowledged his family and God as having helped him climb from the hell of depression towards where he is today–but maybe Mr. Burka feels that Patrick’s allegiance to our constitution and limited government somehow translates into Patrick’s personal story being less deserving of celebration? Less deserving of the standards we apply to all human beings who have overcome?

Mr. Burka’s tornado siren ended with the hyperbolic assertion that someone being associated with the Tea Party movement means they are against roads, education, clean water and all state services:

The question looming over the 2015 session is, frankly, whether state services can survive the session. The state has a lot of money, but will the tea party allow lawmakers to spend it? Or will the money just linger unspent in the Rainy Day fund? There are going to be some potholes in the road ahead–assuming that the tea party lets us build any roads.

Congratulations to Mr. Burka and Texas Monthly for firing such early shots, but maybe they would do well to consider the people who are actually behind Dan Patrick. Katrina Pierson is known to be a close ally. She brings a years-long passion to help Texans suffering from extreme mental illness and will no doubt have significant time in Patrick’s ear to encourage him to focus on the plight of Texans who are suffering from such devastating illness. There is also JoAnn Fleming, a grassroots leader from Tyler, Texas who is known to move mountains in defense of a just cause. Fleming agreed to help this writer in a quest to actually do something to increase investigations and prosecutions against human traffickers, especially predators against Texas children. She also went above and beyond in organizing those of us who help the victims of human trafficking–and she will no doubt have Patrick’s ear as well.

Maybe a Lt. Governor Dan Patrick, with the Texas grassroots behind him, could mean an era of encouraging private efforts to help Texans in need–showing a better, more effective model for society’s aid efforts–or more scrutiny over education dollars and budgets, road budgets, and all state budgets. Why Mr. Burka and his outlet are so resistant to change and so committed to protecting the old guard is a mystery. Maybe being Chicken Little for a while is normal for people who were forced to realize they will no longer run the show.

Brandon Darby is managing director of Breitbart Texas.

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