The Japanese: No Giant Threat?
In “The Japanese Are Coming!” [June], Brux Austin acknowledges his sources with words like “rumor,” “obscure,” and “unofficial .” With that in mind, I am sure Austin would not mind if we offer the following factual information about “the giant Japanese construction company,” Kajima, which he says has been “cozying up to Dallas developers for years in joint projects.”
Kajima International Inc. is a general contractor mat has been operating in the U.S. for twenty-five years, in Dallas for six years. During the six years in Dallas, KII has been awarded nineteen construction projects. Construction only! Kajima does not have and has not had an equity position in any of these projects.
As for Kajima “watching, listening, learning,” our staff is made up of twenty-six salaried employees and approximately one hundred hourly employees. Of these employees only one is Japanese. The lone Japanese employee’s primary duties are marketing and servicing Japanese clients. These duties do not leave him much time to watch, listen, or learn.
Kajima has competed in the Texas construction market for the last six years and has done so without “tremendous backing” from “Japanese banks and other financial sources.” We have been competitive and profitable through the efforts of talented Texans.
By his own admission, Austin spent six solid weeks researching his story-and obtained virtually no specifics. Perhaps D Magazine should have given him a little more time so that he would not have had to fill his story with rumors and obscure, unofficial information. His words, not mine.
Robert G. Titus
Brux Austin should study more about the U.S. economical situation and the world economy. I think if he pays more attention to it, he will be able to recognize the roles of foreign investment in the economy and how much the U.S. depends on it.
I’m also wondering if the article misled the people of Texas.
Japan External Trade Organization
Sticking Up For Trippet
I’ve never worked for him and only now and then have seen him outside business hours (mostly when he’s paying for the meal!), but since 1971 I have been in investment situations thick and t-hn with Terry Trippet [“The Real J.R.,” June]. Colorful, indeed (the greatest “Texas-old-boy” vocabulary extant), outlandish, sometimes (after all, he’s an Aggie), but honest, open, and reliable through it all-and I’ll stake my 18.6 percent interest in a JV on it; in fact, I’ve been staking it for several years because that’s how long he’s been managing partner.
A Reel Injustice
How disturbing to read your recent article, “Farewell, Third Coast” [July], and find such grandiose, one-sided conclusions made about an industry that has done so much for the North Texas area. To fail to mention that The Studios at Las Colinas have housed production work for such prestigious Hollywood films as Silkwood, Robocop, The Trip to Bountiful, Streamers, and most recently, Oliver Stone’s Talk Radio does a grave injustice to the hard-working people who promote this area on a daily basis to attract filmwork.
In the past year more than $20 million has been pumped into the local economy from the trickle-down effect of film and television productions being shot in the North Texas area, including major projects such as Born On the 4th of July with Tom Cruise and Love Hurts with Jeff Daniels. I find it truly amazing that in many other cities, including Hollywood, terrific things are being written about shooting in Texas and we cannot get a fair shake in our own back yard. A more accurate title for the article would have been “Opinion” versus “Business.”
The Studios at Las Colinas
Better Late Than Never
Now that the Legislature has adjourned, I wanted to take a moment to commend your magazine and Glenna Whitley for conducting such an in-depth and professional examination of the controversy concerning Carter High School [“Who Framed Carter High?” April]. As the article shows, the real issue cuts much deeper than whether or not Carter cheated to get around the state’s no-pass, no-play provision. Rather, the dispute over Carter’s grading policies was merely the catalyst that focused attention on many of the deeper issues with which the article deals. It is unfortunate in this respect that the issue spilled over into the courts and cost thousands of dollars to settle.
Again, thank you for your insightful coverage of a difficult and confusing situation.
Your piece on Carol Peeler [“Whose Case Is It, Anyway?” June] contained the following depiction of U.S. District Judge Joe Fish: “Known as ’the hanging judge,’ Fish has a reputation for being as hard as he can be on white-collar criminals and for showing no mercy to defendants who happen to be worn- en, mothers, or first-time offenders. Last year Fish gave sixty years to a woman convicted of mail fraud, while 66 to 74 percent of the defendants sentenced to jail time in similar cases were given a term of less than five years.”
I have never heard the appellation “the hanging judge” used to describe Judge Fish. His peers find him to be an intelligent, conscientious, and hard-working judge and a decent man.
The woman you described was convicted by a jury of her peers on forty-one counts of conspiracy, wire fraud, and mail fraud. A case where hundreds of victims (most of i whom could ill afford it) were bilked out of more than $5 million. The woman was subject to a maximum penalty of 205 years’ imprisonment and a fine of $10,250,000.
Your writer’s facts were badly skewed. The piece was both inaccurate and unfair.
Robert W. Porter
U.S. District Court
Regrettably, your article regarding Carol Peeler entitled “Whose Case Is It, Any- way?” is gravely irresponsible journalism. Not only was the article unfair to Carol Peeler, but it was inexcusably unfair to her counsel, Darrell Jordan and Doug Mulder.
The article claims to be based on information provided by unidentified “government sources” who apparently lack the courage to reveal themselves. I will happily identify myself as the person who referred Carol Peeler to Darrell Jordan in the first place. I actively participated in the meetings of, defense attorneys from 1984 to the current time. I consistently found Jordan to be] dedicated to his client’s interest, and to show the high abilities that justified my referral.
Based upon personal knowledge, I can state that the article is riddled with inaccuracies such as “The principals….offering to pay $100 million if criminal prosecution were dropped.” That is flatly false, and no such offer or anything resembling that was ever made or considered. Also false is the assertion that “Jordan (is] a civil attorney who has limited knowledge in criminal matters.” Finally, and most importantly, I have very strong reason to believe that no offer of immunity was ever authorized by the Tax Division of the Department of Justice, and, therefore, no such offer could have been made to Darrell Jordan or any attorney for Carol Peeler.
Robert Edwin Davis
The Japanese: No Giant Threat?