A year ago, in this very space, we referred to 2020 as “perhaps the craziest, stupidest, Bum Steeriest year in Texas Monthly’s history.” The unspoken assumption—or perhaps it was a desperate wish—was that 2021 would prove to be at least marginally saner than that misbegotten election year. And how
Six years after he became governor, we still don’t know what Greg Abbott wants to accomplish—except, as this year made clear, to hold on to office, no matter how many Texans get hurt.
Let’s face it: this was no one’s favorite year. Here are a few dozen reasons why.
Because it grew so overconfident about its ability to win Texas that it didn’t bother to figure out how to win Texas, the state’s Democratic party is our Bum Steer of the Year!
A little girl responds to unspeakable loss, the governor de-escalates, black trail-riders take Discovery Green, Ted Cruz’s craven response to military force, and a guy with a sword in Deep Ellum.
From Mattress Mack to that Austin guy who pushed a park ranger into the lake, the pandemic is bringing out the best and worst in people.
Plus, feeling grateful for our gimlet-eyed deputy editor, Jeff Salamon.
For breaking new ground in being bad at being bad, Texas Speaker of the House Dennis Bonnen has earned one half of our annual booby prize!
For abandoning the state that had lifted him up from obscurity, Beto O’Rourke is the winner of one half of our annual booby prize!
Beto O'Rourke, Dennis Bonnen, and the Houston Astros make our annual dishonor roll, along with assorted lesser-known idiots and evildoers.
An open letter to a team that made us all proud—and then started whiffing.
2019 Bum Steer Awards: Steve Stockman, Who Proved a Particularly Greedy and Especially Busy Criminal
The disgraced former congressman is our third runner-up for his eagerness to enrich himself—or at least pay his kennel bills—in a transparently illegal manner.
The 2019 Bum Steer Awards: Lupe Valdez, Who Was Woefully Unprepared to Run Against Governor Greg Abbott
The former Dallas County sheriff, our second runner-up, ran the worst gubernatorial campaign in Texas since the last time a Democrat went up against Greg Abbott.
The former congressman’s troublesome professional ethics, alleged caddish behavior, and questionable taste in adult-size onesie pajamas made him our first runner-up.
Our Bum Steer of the Year, the radio host dragged our democracy into the same sewer he crawled out of so many years ago.
Welcome back to our annual roundup of Texas's most ridiculous and idiotic endeavors, featuring political personalities, flashy figures, and plenty of nameless ne'er-do-wells.
Cruz 2.0, West Texas umbrellas, and our Bum Steer of the Year.
Episode one: Behind the scenes of the 2018 Bum Steer Awards.
Selecting the Bum Steers can be a bit of a drag. That's why this year we're supplementing our list with something a bit more upbeat.
The Austin-based office captured third place for the botched investigation of state representative Dawnna Dukes.
The outgoing congressman takes eighth place for his refusal to face the truth about climate change.
The East Texas congressman takes seventh place for his wack-job debut as an infographic creator.
Our lieutenant governor, for his eagerness to squander his power, waste our time, and drag Texas politics into the bathroom, is our Bum Steer of the Year.
The Mistress of the Elements occupies second place—for being really, really mean to Texas.
The eight infamous Steers celebrated elsewhere in this package had a lot of company this year in our hall of shame. Here are another fifty or so Texans deserving of some ignominy.
Landing in fourth place, the state government’s also-ran loyal opposition, for going missing in action, year after year.
In fifth place: the excitable radio host, for saying so many crazy things that his unsuccessful and very public child custody battle wasn’t the most embarrassing thing that happened to him this year.
Help us choose 2017’s Bum Steer. Vote in round two of our poll.
Help us choose 2017's Bum Steer.
It took nine years for him to meat his match.
A twist on the Aggie War Hymn.
A case of mistaken identity in Groesbeck.
The Blackland Prairie becomes an unfortunate dumping ground.
A bit of magic in the U.S. House of Representatives.
A case of carrots and the customs checkpoint in Pharr.
Readers respond to our annual Bum Steer Awards.
A class project in Keller goes bust.
A tweet gone foul.
How College Station became the "most exciting" city in Texas.
A curious case of courthouse nuptials.
Time to double-check the locks on your barns.
We can see how that looks bad.
A headline in the February 19 edition of the Waller County Times Tribune announced, “Hitch up your bitches and jingle those spurs, its trail ride season.”
Congratulations to new ag commission Sid Miller.
Readers respond to the January 2015 issue.
After DWI charges against Justice Nora Longoria, of the Thirteenth Court of Appeals, were dismissed, outraged Hidalgo County Republicans pointed out that Longoria and the district attorney and district court judge who decided to let her off are all Democrats—and a police dash-cam video that showed her bombing her field sobriety test went viral.
Step one: study Wendy Davis’s example.
The pleasure of picking a Bum Steer.
From arrogant announcers to zany zygotes—and everything in between—it was a banner year for the Bum Steers.