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Archive for August, 2012

Scoreboard!   Oops!  Guv Dude and AG Abbott just can’t handle the truth.  They are also very sore losers.  Here is what Dude said yesterday after the Voter I.D. law went down the toilet like all t__ds are supposed to go:

Chalk up another victory for fraud. Today, federal judges subverted the will of the people of Texas and undermined our effort to ensure fair and accurate elections. The Obama Administration’s claim that it’s a burden to present a photo ID to vote simply defies common sense. I will continue to work with Attorney General Abbott to fight for the same right that other states already have to protect their elections.”

Dude, as soon as you get your arse home from Tampa, why don’t you invite Commentary and a few others over and show us the fraud!   Show me the victories that fraud can claim?  Dude won a number of elections and I don’t consider that fraud – just a mistake.  Where is the fraud?  More Latinos being added to the voter rolls doesn’t constitute fraud.  Shifting demographics is not fraud. 

Quit crying!  Oops!  Never mind!  Keep crying so all those folks that you tried to deny the right to vote can be reminded to vote against GOP candidates from September 23 through November 6!

I’m sure Dude, AG Abbott, and others will be huddling soon to figure out another way to keep Latinos and African Americans from voting.   Stay tuned, stay alert, and be on the lookout!

OK, after last night, I have to do the obligatory review of Dirty Harry’s performance.  For a fistful of dollars – heck – for few dollars more he could have hired better writers and had a sudden impact, instead, he looked like the rookie.  Walking on stage a la high plains drifter, wanting to throw down the gauntlet, and stepping into the line of fire, just about every talking head said it was unforgiven that he would attempt to be the enforcer any which way you can.  It was obvious that the Romney folks gave him absolute power to use magnum force to make it look like it is a true crime to vote for The President’s reelection.  The media talking heads kind of suggested that this pale rider might need a little blood work because Romney folks said he would be arriving looking like a million dollar baby in a pink cadillac instead it looked more like a gran torino hauling two mules for Sister Sara on the bridges of Madison County.

Former ‘Stro pitcher Shane Reynolds will throw out the first pitch tonight at The Yard.  Shane played 11 seasons with the ‘Stros – 1992-2002.  What were the most number of wins in a season that Shane had and what numero was on his jersey?

The only thing I’m going to say about Romney’s speech last night is that it was thin on specifics.  He also only devoted a couple of minutes to foreign affairs.  There was no mention of immigration reform or securing the border or DREAMers so I guess he is going to leave chasing after the Latino vote to surrogates like Marco Rubio, New Mexico’s Governor, and P.  I’m thinking that they are just hoping that Latinos won’t show up to vote.

Now it is on to Charlotte where diversity will rule!

Today the Chron E-Board also has a take on AG Abbott and his futile efforts to deny Latinos political participation.  Here is how it ends:

In Texas, of all places, does Abbott really want to defend a redistricting map that dilutes the electoral strength of Hispanics, even as his party scrambles to cultivate them? Or to argue that the few, scattered incidences of voter ID fraud are worth disenfranchising many Hispanics?

It’s time to drop these cases.

Check out the entire E-Board take here.

Shane Reynolds went 19-8 in 1998 of course and wore the numero 38 in 1992 and from 1993-2002 he wore the numero 37.

Only 12,835 showed up last night at The Yard – the lowest turnout at The Yard ever.  We lost again.  Commentary wasn’t there but my tickets were.  Jeff Kent Bobbleheads on Saturday and Milo Bobbleheads on Sunday as the NL Central first place Reds come in for three.

Have a nice Labor Day!

 

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The Chron E-Board still reads Commentary and that has to be a good thing.  Commentary is just going to lay out what the Chron E-Board had to say today on the Latino vote.  It is an interesting take that concerned folks should slowly digest:

Addressing his people in October 1939, British Prime Minister Winston Churchill spoke of Russia as "a riddle, wrapped in a mystery, inside an enigma."

Nearly three-quarters of a century later, the statesman’s World War II-era formulation can be applied to a very different and modern political subject: the Hispanic vote in the 2012 presidential election. With apologies to Churchill, it, too, is a riddle, a mystery and an enigma. It’s also a significant electoral prize; one being ardently pursued by both major parties.

The riddle: Is there really such a thing as a homogenous, straight-party Hispanic vote?

The mystery: Why do Hispanics as a group so dramatically under-perform their vast demographic potential at the polls?

The enigma: Which major party will claim this prize? Or will both?

Chronicle readers received an up-close and personal view of this dilemma/opportunity, via separate Sunday profile stories on two very different Hispanic-Texan politicians – GOP U.S. Senate nominee Ted Cruz and San Antonio Mayor Julian Castro.

Both men are considered rising stars in their parties. Speaking in prime time Tuesday at the Republican National Convention, Cruz shone brightly, sparking comparisons with GOP icon Ronald Reagan. Castro will have his moment to shine when he delivers the keynote speech to the Democratic convention in prime time next week in Charlotte, N.C., filling the speaking slot that launched Barack Obama in 2004.

But that is where the similarities end. Cruz and Castro promote political positions that are as unalike as black beans and menudo.

Cruz, 42, is a tea party conservative who sprang from obscurity to defeat the GOP establishment favorite, Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst, in July’s Republican primary runoff. The Houstonian, a former Texas solicitor general and college debate champion, is the son of a Cuban immigrant father and attended Princeton University and Harvard Law School.

Castro, 37, the son of a single mother, has a twin brother, Joaquin, a Texas legislator running for Congress. The Castro brothers both attended Stanford University and Harvard Law School. As mayor of San Antonio Julian Castro has dealt with the nitty-gritty issues confronting a growing bicultural city.

Both Cruz and Castro can lay fair claim to a fully pedigreed Hispanic birthright, as well as a place at the center of the battle to win this electoral prize for their respective parties.

But it is far from clear that there is a definable "Hispanic vote" in the sense that there is, for example, a unified African-American vote that can be counted upon by Democrats in good times and bad.

Rather, there are expanding millions of Latino voters with vastly different geographic, educational, cultural, racial and economic backgrounds. Cuban lawyers and bankers. Mexican-American entrepreneurs. Sixth-generation Latino ranchers and farmers all across Texas. Devout traditional Roman Catholics and growing numbers of evangelical Christians. Non-believers, too.

Hispanic-Americans proudly defy the stereotypes others would place on them. And therein lies the challenge for both parties in pursuit of Hispanic/Latino support. This is not a homogenous group. Far from it.

But first things first. If Hispanics are to gain political power to match their demographic heft, voter turnout must improve. It is notoriously low, and for as long as it remains so, the myth of Hispanic political power will remain just a dream.

Convincing evidence of that is as near at hand as Houston’s U.S. House District 29, created after the 1990 census as a Hispanic district. Since that beginning, the district seat has been held by Rep. Gene Green, an Anglo with strong ties to the Hispanic community, but a gringo, nonetheless. This is the proof that creating a Hispanic district requires more than redrawing political boundaries.

Meanwhile, younger rising Hispanic stars – Republican and Democrat – are continuing to make their presence known in Texas and across the nation. The highest political profile in Texas or anywhere else surely belongs to George P. Bush, grandson of President George H.W. Bush and nephew of President George W. Bush, who is the GOP state party’s finance chairman. But he is only one of many.

The most basic act of leadership these young worthies can perform will be in bringing greater numbers of Latinos to the nation’s ballot boxes. Till that is done, the dreams will remain elusive. The Hispanic vote will continue to be a riddle, wrapped in a mystery, inside an enigma.

How many MLB clubs have never won a World Serious and name them please?

Speaking of riddle me this, the Trib has a piece today on the Lone Star State GOP going after a share of the Latino vote. 

Check it here.

The Trib also has a piece on some GOP delegates wanting Guv Dude and the Lite Guv to retire.

Check it here.

Eight MLB teams have never won the World Serious and they include the Padres – 2 appearances (1984, 1998), Rockies – 1 appearance (2007), the ‘Stros – 1 appearance (2005), Nationals/Expos- 0 appearances,  Rangers/Senators- 2 appearances (2010, 2011), Mariners – 0 appearances, Rays- 1 appearance (2008), and Brewers- 1 appearance (1982).

The Rocket will pitch in Skeeterville on September 7.

Last night I witnessed Hunter Pence blast a three-run dinger and then watched us lose numero 90 for the season.  Again only 13,000 and showed up last night. 

 

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Yesterday afternoon I was watching the GOP roll call vote for president and I noticed that the Convention Secretary wasn’t acknowledging and repeating the votes for Ron Paul – zilch, nada.  At first I thought the podium was experiencing audio problems then CNN’s Wolf Blitzer and Dana Bash called attention to the omission and called it “petty” and a “slap in the face” to Ron Paul delegates by the Mitt Romney campaign.

CNN interviewed a Romney higher-up and he basically admitted it was payback time.  The operative said that the Paul supporters packed conventions this summer after Romney had “won” the nomination and secured more delegates than Romney in some instances. 

If you ask me it was “petty” and kind of bullying by the Romney campaign.  It also looked very silly.

Commentary left The Yard early last night to check out Governor Christie and Ann Romney on the tube.  I wasn’t impressed with Governor Christie.  I was more impressed with Ann Romney. 

In 2004, Roy O. finished the season at 20-10 and that got him a third place finish in the NL Cy Young Award voting.  The Rocket was first.  Name the pitcher that finished second?

Here is from the Chron on Ted Cruz’s speech last night:

Texas state Rep. Aaron Pena Jr., said Cruz embodies “the American dream and the immigrant’s dream.”

“His strength is in the fact that he’s animated the Republican base,”  said Pena, a former Democrat who now chairs the Texas Legislature’s Hispanic Republican Conference. “The fact that he’s Hispanic is a plus.”

We’re going to find out on November 6 how many Latino votes Cruz brings to the GOP. 

I’m going to go out on a limb and bet that SA Mayor Julian Castro’s keynote speech next week will get more and better media run than Christie’s and Cruz’s speeches combined.

The Lite Guv says he is running for reelection which means that he’s running hard and far right during the next legislative session. 

Mail ballots will be delivered to the post office on September 22.  Are you ready?

Here is what SBOE, District 6 candidate Traci Jensen said about the Michael Williams appointment:

Governor Perry’s announcement of Michael Williams as his choice for Commissioner of Education is very telling for the future of public education. Mr. Williams has had a lengthy career in the energy industry serving as the Railroad Commissioner and on many boards ranging from the coal industry to mining. With this resume I initially was not surprised but was a little perplexed.  Would a career energy man with no background in education be an appropriate choice for one of our most powerful appointed positions in public education in a time of considerable turmoil? Then it became clear.  Mr. Williams has been and continues to be a vocal proponent of the voucher system and by coincidence the voucher issue is again the pet project of the Republican controlled legislature. Governor Perry and State Senator Dan Patrick have made no apologies about seeing vouchers as inevitable and the solution to all of our public education problems. What it will really mean is stripping away of funds from already cash strapped schools and a funneling of tax money to religious institutions or deregulated charters.  As an educator in Texas I have always searched for the silver lining so I truly hope that if confirmed, Mr. Williams will protect the Texas constitution and preserve our public education institutions if for no other reason than for business and economic prosperity. With the systemic denigration of public education by the State Board of Education, the deconstruction of classrooms by the legislature and now a political appointee with no education background that wants vouchers, I am afraid this silver lining is beginning to become too tarnished.

Randy “The Big Unit” Johnson of course was second in voting for the 2004 NL Cy Young Award.

Last night I tried to snag a foul shot last night and it ripped my lid out of my hand.  I didn’t get it.  Only 13,000 and change made it to The Yard last night and we gave it away in the ninth.

 

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Next Friday, September 7, the folks that run the elections can begin accepting mail ballot applications.  After a certain number of days, the mail ballots will be sent out and some folks will start voting.  Are you ready?

Kuffer today takes a real close look at the METRO election.  This is the best take so far of the METRO vote so pay close attention.

Here is Kuffer.

Houston Tomorrow, the Citizens Transportation Coalition and Better Houston are campaigning for a no vote on the METRO initiative.

Here is a part of Kuffer:

Here, it’s just transit advocates that are unhappy. It’s far from clear to me that they can muster up enough support to defeat this version of the referendum, especially if there’s a concerted effort in favor of it. One could argue that instead of working to defeat the referendum, it would be better to work on Metro to spend the extra money it will get, and the extra money it will have from its unrestricted sources as debt service gets addressed, in a way that transit advocates think is best. I’m sure they’ll be doing that anyway after the referendum, regardless of the outcome, but my way would probably be less awkward.

I don’t know how this vote is going to end up.  Are you ready?

You can check out Hunter Pence at The Yard this evening.  Hunter has now played 25 games with the Giants.  Since joining the Giants, how many dingers does Pence have and what is his batting average as a Giant?

Guv Dude and the Lite Guv are trying hard to remain relevant.  Yesterday Dude appointed Michael Williams to serve as Education Commissioner.  I don’t think the fella knows much about public education or public education policy in the Lone Star State.  Dude will use him to serve as a cheerleader for vouchers during the next legislative session, a gesture aimed directly at placating the Tea Baggers.

The Lite Guv, meanwhile, decided to go to Tampa and will watch and cheer Ted Cruz tonight.  He has also printed 2014 letterhead. 

The Houston Press has a take on The Rocket pitching at The Yard.  Here is a bit:

That said I don’t like what I’m hearing about the Astros and Roger Clemens, namely that the Astros are going to sign Clemens to a contract to pitch this season. Sure the season’s meaningless. And it’s not like the over-the-hill Clemens would be taking starts away from a Cy Young winner. It’s just that the move reeks of desperation. It’s something Drayton McLane would do, and if there’s anything this team should be doing, it’s not doing something that Drayton McLane would do.

This fella doesn’t know what he is talking about.  Drayton never did anything like this.  Drayton did sign Randy Johnson, Andy Pettitte, and The Rockets in their prime.  They also helped get us into the playoffs.  Maybe in the last few seasons we signed some free agents that fell flat like Bill Hall, Mike Hampton, Pedro Feliz, and Pudge, but he didn’t disrespect the game.  The Houston Press fella needs to move on and forget about writing about my old friend Drayton.

Here is the entire Press take here.

Hunter Pence has one dinger and is batting .214 in 25 games as a Giant of course.

Here are a few reasons why you may want to drop by The Yard over the next three nights:  the Giants are in a division race, see how Hunter is doing, Buster Posey is hitting .328, Matt Cain pitches tonight, Altuve is hitting .301, good seats are available, you can probably find good ticket deals on ebay, and St. Arnold can be found throughout The Yard.

 

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Last night Commentary watched the season finale of “The Newsroom” on HBO and I have to give it the thumbs up. I watched every episode of this first season – sometimes more than once.  It was very entertaining.  I don’t know about the accuracies of what goes on in a newsroom but I did like the way they framed each episode with a recent news event – Tea Party, 5/1/11, Tucson shootings, phone hacking, Voter ID, SB 1070, debt ceiling, Koch brothers, debates, Anthony Weiner, Casey Anthony, Egypt, and Deepwater Horizon.

Last night the anchor Will McAvoy (Jeff Daniels) called the Tea Party the American Taliban – ouch!  I’d be very surprised if any Tea Baggers watched “The Newsroom” since it is on HBO, the home of Bill Maher. 

“The Newsroom” first aired in late June making it ineligible for this year’s Emmy Awards.  I wouldn’t be surprised if it snagged nominations for The Golden Globes at the end of the year and next year’s Emmys for Daniels, Emily Mortimer, Sam Waterston, John Gallagher, Jr., Alison Pill, and even Jane Fonda.  Alison Pill as you recall portrayed Anne Kronenberg, Harvey Milk’s campaign manager, in the 2008 “Milk.”

I think the show’s creator and lead writer Aaron Sorkin deserve some props for putting together this show.  Like I said, it is very entertaining and interesting.  “The Newsroom” now takes a break and will return next June.  Stay tuned!

Aaron Sorkin also co-wrote the screenplay for a baseball movie that snagged him an Oscar nomination.  Name the flick?

Isaac wasn’t able to get floor credentials to the GOP National Convention so he just caused a one day delay ruckus. Isaac is now looking at a place to make landfall and will do his best to hog media coverage away from the American Taliban in Tampa – ouch!

Commentary attended the Harris County Democratic Party Convention this past Saturday at the CWA Hall.   A lot of Dems showed up – 700 plus they said.   Nice job to the organizers!

The Rocket was impressive Saturday night according to some media reports.   I get where the ‘Stros are probably privately thinking about letting The Rocket make a start or three to boost interest and attendance with the proceeds going to the Astros in Action Foundation.  While they are at it, why not invite Randy Travis to sing the National Anthem or “God Bless America?”

Aaron Sorkin along with Steven Zaillian co-wrote the screenplay for “Moneyball” of course that earned them an Oscar nomination.

I’m not going to say anything about our 13-53 road record as the NL West first place Giants and Hunter Pence visit The Yard for three beginning tomorrow evening. 

 

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Commentary spent a good part of yesterday trying to figure out what to do if The President gets reelected and Dems hold on to the U.S. Senate.  First of all I intend to be on the winning side of the Lubbock-Started-It Civil War.  I’m sorry neighbor, even if the Lone Star State goes red as expected this November I’m going to be on the side of the USA/UN Coalition of the Winners – they got the bomb.   If we do have a civil war, the newly formed Panhandle Plains Al-Qaida is going to have to fire the first shot to get it started.  That’s how wars usually start.

I’m sure they are already scoping out potential targets up there but I don’t think they will launch their attack on November 7 – the day after the election.  Friday night lights, November 9 is reserved for Lubbock High, Coronado, and Monterey football.  On Saturday, November 10th, the Jayhawks visit the Red Raiders at Jones Stadium.  Sunday folks go to church.  On Monday the 12th, six days after the election, I don’t know if they’ll still have the adrenalin rush needed to go pick a fight with the Coalition.  Oops, I forgot, hunting for mule deer opens on November 17th, so if they are going to pick a fight with the Coalition, they better be confident they can wrap it up in a few days because that’s why folks out there are passionate about the Second Amendment – hunting season.

Since Guv Dude, Ted Cruz, Sen. Cornyn, and AG Abbott have been silent on the threat of a civil war, should we expect them to provide support to the Panhandle Plains Al-Qaida, like hand over the Battleship Texas and will that make us citizens of a Lone Star State Sponsor of Terrorism.  Can’t you get sanctioned for sponsoring terrorists?

It is my understanding that contingency plans are being drawn up by CNN, Reuters, NY Times, and AP to redeploy to their war correspondents from Afghanistan to Lubbock.  Fox News is saying that if hostilities do commence, they’ve already been granted permission to embed with the Plains Al-Qaida.  It will be weird to see Joe Holley, Patricia Kilday Hart, Jay Root, Dave McNeely, Burkablog, Wayne Slater, Ross Ramsey, Doug Miller, Miya Shay, Mary Benton, and Peggy Fikac, in helmets and flak jackets as war correspondents.

I’ll say this.  If it does get to a Lubbock-Started-It Civil War and it gets out of hand and spreads to H-Town, I am going to get my Mom, Dad, Dante, MariGirl, and other folks that are close to me and hide out at The Yard.  We’ll be safe there.  Nobody goes there these days anyway. 

From yesterday’s Lubbock AJ:

Precinct 1 Commissioner Bill McCay, a Republican, said he was surprised by (County Judge) Head’s comments but understood they were a reflection of the judge’s role in emergency management.

“I honestly think the worst-case scenario in West Texas is a tornado,” McCay said. “To bring Washington, D.C., into Lubbock is certainly an exaggeration.”

Here is from the AJ E-Board today:

Our position: Part of being a public leader must be an ability to communicate effectively with the public. Lubbock County Judge Tom Head’s comments about his concerns regarding the re-election of Barack Obama went way beyond ineffective communication. It was foolish, insulting and inflammatory. His lack of judgment has damaged public confidence to the point where he should resign.

Why you should care: Head has a right to his private beliefs and opinions, but he represents all the residents of the county and not just himself when he makes public expressions in his role as a county government leader.

Some are speculating that County Judge Head Case was just trying to call attention to Lubbock in hopes of boosting tourism.   Expect a flood of survivalists and militia groups to flock to Lubbock in the coming weeks and months.  Also expect a heavy dose of one-liners from the late night talk shows.

The ‘Stros are in New York to play the Mets.  Of course, most folks know about the 1986 NLCS Game 6 at the Astrodome between the ‘Stros and Mets that went 16 innings that we lost 7-6 and also lost the NLCS 4 games to 2.  Who made the last out for the ‘Stros in the bottom of the 16th inning?

The Harris County AFL-CIO sent this out yesterday:

The Harris County AFL-CIO Council has endorsed the City of Houston and the Houston Community College (HCC) bond measures that will be on the November General Election ballot along with the METRO General Mobility Program, at its August 22, 2012, meeting of its affiliated Unions.

This must be a typo error – where are the HISD bonds?

The Walmart folks announced yesterday that the soon-to-open Walmart down the street would hire 250 folks.    All the building that is going on around the new Walmart on Yale and Heights, the Kroger going up Studemont, the new construction around the Target on Taylor, and the feeder road work along I-10 is certainly having an impact on my ‘hood.   You sit at the I-10 traffic lights for longer periods of time.  The traffic lines are longer.  There is more congestion.  Oh, I forgot – they are closing the Fiesta right behind my place at the end of the year and the word is a home for older folks will take its place.   I guess you can say adios to the good old days!

The GOP National Convention begins next Monday and H-Town CM Helena Brown is an Alternate Delegate. 

On October 15, 1986 in Game 6 of the NLCS at the Astrodome, with the ‘Stros trailing 7-6 in the bottom of the 16th inning and runners on first and second with two outs, Kevin Bass of course went down swinging to end the game.

Tomorrow night a lot of folks will tune in to ESPN Classic to watch The Rocket.  Tomorrow night a lot of folks will tune in to Channel 11 to watch the Texans.

Since the team doesn’t play like they ever want to win a game, I don’t know why they just don’t call it a year and give us a refund for the 19 remaining home games.   The front office has to take the responsibility for fielding this bunch.   Good thing we play tomorrow at noon instead of tomorrow evening because nobody would be tuned to Fox Southwest.  What am I talking about?  Thanks to the front office nobody is going to be watching anyway. It  ain’t right!

 

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This fella has been to way too many Tea Bagger rallies.  Check out this story:

A Lubbock County, Texas, judge is asking for a tax increase to hire deputies for the inevitable civil war he believes would follow President Obama’s re-election.

The way he puts it, Judge Tom Head wants to prepare for the "worst", which to him means "civil unrest, civil disobedience" and possible "civil war", according to a report from Fox 34 Lubbock

Judge Tom Head and Commissioner Mark Heinrich told the station this week that a 1.7 cent tax increase for the next fiscal year was necessary to prepare for many contingencies, including Obama’s re-election. He also mentioned to the station that the county needs a pay increase is needed for the district attorney’s office and more funds to pay for more sheriff’s office deputies.

"He’s going to try to hand over the sovereignty of the United States to the (United Nations), and what is going to happen when that happens?," Head asked the station during a Monday interview. "I’m thinking the worst. Civil unrest, civil disobedience, civil war maybe. And we’re not just talking a few riots here and demonstrations, we’re talking Lexington, Concord, take up arms and get rid of the guy."

Here is the full story.

Here is from the Lubbock AJ:

During Wednesday morning’s public hearing for the proposed tax hike at the Commissioners’ Court, Head’s remarks were brought up by Sue Barrick, a research proposal editor at Texas Tech, when she asked what portion of the revenue from the tax increase would be used to “fund the eventuality of a civil war.”

Head said the comments he made during the interview were taken out of context and said his role as emergency management director requires him to be prepared for the “worst-case scenario.”

Head told The Avalanche-Journal after the Wednesday meeting the footage broadcast Tuesday night was a “snippet” of the whole interview and taken out of context.

“As emergency management director I have to think of the worst-case scenario, and I used that as an example,” Head said.

In his opinion, the judge explained, the worst-case scenario, politically and financially, is if Obama and the Senate Democrats stay in power.

Here is the rest of the AJ Story.

Lubbock County voted 63% to 30%, Guv Dude over Bill White in 2010.  In 2008, it was McCain over The President, 68% to 31%.   Lubbock County has a 32.6% Latino and 7.8% African American population out of 284,000.  Out of 32,000 plus enrollment, Texas Tech has 5,300 Latinos and 1,700 African Americans.

I blame this on Guv Dude, Ted Cruz, AG Abbott, Tea Baggers, and even the Lite Guv for inciting voters with their hysterical rants while on the stump.

I’d like to see a contingent of Lone Star State Dems head out to Lubbock in the next day or so and hold a press conference to call out those idiots and bring national attention to their sorry arses. 

Something is wrong when they won’t raise taxes to pay for education but they will raise taxes so we can have a civil war.   If the Dem Party won’t go out there to call them out, then let’s at least send a shipment of arms to the folks of color in Lubbock County just in case.

The Phillies are 57-67 and could be headed for a losing season.  When was the last time the Phillies had a losing season?

Commentary got some run in the Houston Press yesterday so check it out here.

I guess we can call this the gooberization of Lloyd Oliver.  The fella didn’t look like he wanted to campaign or serve so I don’t know why he is complaining.

Check out the Chron story here.

Of course, we should not have been in this position in the first place.

Kuffer has a different take of sorts on the Dem move.

Check it out here.

The latest NBC Poll has The President beating Romney among African Americans 94% to 0%.  That doesn’t need ‘splaining if you ask me.  If stuff like what happened in Lubbock continues, on Election Night it will be 110% zip for The President among African Americans.

You can always count on straight talk from the Big Puma.  Here is what he had to say to the Chron about the changes at The Yard:

“I hate the move to the American League and I hate what they’re doing to the outfield,” the former Astro said Wednesday as he was back in St. Louis before going on a rehab assignment in Memphis.

The  Astros’ new ownership has replaced the Citgo sign above the Crawford Boxes with 12 panels for advertising sponsors and is considering moving the signature train from above left-center field and making changes to Tal’s Hill in center.

“I hate it,” Berkman repeated.

The Phillies were 80-81 in 2002 of course – the last time they had a losing season.

The Rocket gets the lead front page sports section story today for playing slow-pitch softball and the ‘Stros falling to 12-50 on the road are on page C-4.  What can I say?

 

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Patricia Kilday Hart has a column today on our Dem nominee for Harris County DA, Lloyd Oliver.  Hart dubs him:  the Kinky Friedman of Harris County politics.  I’ll just call him the Kinkhole who is just mooning us, laughing at us, and referring to our local Dem Chair and former Dem Chair as “two goobers.”

At this point I honestly can’t figure out if trying to replace him on the ballot helps or hurts Dems – like who is paying attention?   Do voters care if we ignore the fact that he won fair and square and we replace him?  I mean he is acting like a joker of sorts.   If he wants the press coverage, then kick him off!

Here is how Hart ends her column:

Rich Parsons a spokesman for the Texas Secretary of State’s Office, said election attorneys do not believe that a qualified candidate can be removed from the ballot for violation of party rules.

So (former Dem Chair Gerry) Birnberg’s complaint may not succeed in knocking Oliver off the ballot, but it may ultimately prove valuable to other local Democrats. By putting sunlight between Oliver and the local party, it may inoculate other courthouse candidates.

It also broadcasts a cautionary message to voters: This isn’t a year for straight ticket voting. If you don’t know the qualifications of candidates in a particular race, skip on down.

There are some other "colorful" candidates out there that will be the subject of future columns.

I predict Oliver will remain on the ballot, and like Kinky, liven up the election season. As he proudly asserted: "I have a tendency to say what I mean."

Here is Hart’s column.

I am looking forward to reading about the future “colorful” candidates out there.  I just hope they are not ours.

Everyone knows that The Rocket was the starting pitcher for the AL All Stars in 1986 when the game was played at the Astrodome and the starting pitcher for the NL All Stars in 2004 when the game was played at The Yard.  Name the leadoff batter that he faced in each game?

Check out Harris County Commissioner Steve Radack saying something nice about the H-Town Mayor.

From the Chron:  “I’m praising her,” Radack replied, then smiled. “That’s today.”

I’m thinking the Mayor is going to frame that quote because it is unlikely she will see one like it again.

The Chron E-Board has a take on the Deferred Action of Childhood Arrivals executive order or The DREAMER Relief.

Check it here.

Nice job E-Board!

It turns out my pal CM Mike Sullivan will be five days short of a pension.

Check out the Chron here.

No problem!  If he doesn’t win in November just ask one of his council buddies to keep him on the payroll for five more days.  Stay tuned!

My take yesterday on The Rocket’s Baseball Hall of Fame strategy got some other folks to mention the possibility.  From Chron.con:

The 2013 ballot will be top-heavy with high-profile players from baseball’s so-called “steroid era,” led by career home run leader Barry Bonds and Clemens and including Sammy Sosa and Mike Piazza, plus holdovers like former Astros first baseman Jeff Bagwell.

That has led to speculation that Clemens’ comeback efforts could be a way to delay his eligibility, since Hall candidates must be retired five years before becoming eligible in voting by members of the Baseball Writers Association of America.

Clemens, though, said, “I’m not worrying about pushing the clock back. The guys who have a vote this year can vote like they feel.”

Here is the entire Chron take.

The hard copy of today’s Chron Sports Sections devotes over two pages to The Rocket – wow! 

In 1986 at the MLB All Star Game held at the Astrodome, The Rocket faced NL All Star leadoff hitter Tony Gwynn and in 2004 at The Yard he faced AL All Star leadoff hitter Ichiro Suzuki of course.

The Phillies gave away 45,000 Hunter Pence Bobbleheads to their fans last night while Hunter Pence was in LA last night playing for the Giants in a key series with the Dodgers – got it!

We set the precedent three years ago when we handed out 10,000 Pudge Rodriguez Bobbleheads after we had traded him to the Rangers.

We continue to stinks!  The team also is admitting that we stinks because we got informed yesterday that some of the ticket prices for next year will be going down and they are giving away prizes for renewing your tickets early by having a drawing for among other things free teeth whitening, a year’s supply of Chick-fil-Hate, free haircuts for a year, free VIP seating for the new uniform unveiling, and free passes to the H-Town Zoo.  How about just giving us a pennant contender!

 

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Truman, Stevenson (twice), Kennedy, Johnson, Humphrey, McGovern, Carter (twice), Mondale, Dukakis, Clinton (twice), Gore, Kerry, and The President – that’s 16 Democratic nominees for President my Dad’s voted for since he got back from WWII.  That’s a nice haul!  My Dad is celebrating his 89th BD today – triple yikes!  Happy Birthday Tony Campos!

My pal Gary Polland was the first to point out that some Dem leaders were working behind the scenes to remove the Dem nominee for Harris County DA.

Now it looks like the Chron has the story here.

Kuffer also has a different take on the effort to replace the Dem nominee.

Check out Kuffer here.

I wonder if local Dems will take up the issue at the Harris County Democratic Party Convention this Saturday at 9 am at the CWA Hall in Downtown H-Town.  I wonder if the Dem nominee for Harris County DA will ask to address the delegates to the Convention.   I wonder who else will address the delegates.  Commentary has registered and will attend and I’ll wait and see if the event is productive. 

Everybody knows that The Rocket struck out 4,672 hitters in his career.  Did he ever strike out 300 or more hitters in a season?

The H-Town City Council will revamp their Code of Conduct procedures this week on how to go about doling out punishment for bad behavior.  After the stalemate of sorts that they went through a year or so ago, they are attempting to clear things up a bit.

Go check out the Council Agenda Back-Up here for the finer details.

It looks like The Rocket’s got a Baseball Hall of Fame campaign strategy – sorta.  He is going to pitch this weekend at Skeeter Land.  So here’s the deal.  If he does OK in a couple of outings, the ‘Stros will pick him up for three games in September when they can expand the roster.  The ‘Stros will let him start against three non-contending clubs at The Yard – Cubbies, Phillies, and San Luis (soon to be non-contenders)  – and they will let him pitch four or five innings and sell out The Yard.  It is gate money the team wasn’t counting on.  They will pay The Rocket the minimum but since he’ll be an MLBer, he’ll be knocked off the Hall of Fame ballot for the next five years and won’t have to face the humiliation of not getting the votes next January to join the Hall of Fame.   By 2018, some of the old school BBWOA members won’t be around to leave The Rocket off of their ballot and the most recent Rocket memory will be of the 2012 Comeback at The Yard.  That’s not a bad strategy if you ask me.  Plus, at least it would be something to look forward to at The Yard this September.

Next Monday evening I’ll probably get take-out grub and watch the GOPers skewer The President.  Tuesday and Wednesday I’ll have to decide between more skewering or checking out Hunter Pence and the Giants at The Yard.  Thursday, I’ll have to watch Romney accept.  Of course, if Isaac tries to get floor credentials, I’ll stay glued to the tube.

The Rocket never struck out 300 or more hitters in a season of course, but he got close in 1988 (291) with the Red Sox and in 1997 (292) with the Jays.

The team plays in San Luis this evening with the interim Skipper auditioning for the permanent gig.

 

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Commentary will head over to a local eatery after work today to help celebrate Dante’s 13th birthday.   Yep, now I’ll have a teenager to deal with at The Yard on weekends.   Happy Birthday Dante!

The Skipper didn’t deserve the Saturday night pink slip if you ask me.  Let’s see in 2010 he lost Roy O. and the Big Puma.  Last year he lost Michael Bourn and Hunter Pence.  This year he lost Brett Myers, Numero 45, and Wandy.   That’s the way it goes in the MLB.

I will say that the team has a bunch of guys wearing big league uniforms that don’t belong in the big leagues.  They make a lot of mental errors like the other night when the left fielder decided to throw home instead of hitting the cutoff man.  Things unraveled after that and we ended up serving up a nine run fifth inning.  Saturday night’s left fielder also wasn’t hustling best I could tell.

We’re paying big league prices to watch a team that aren’t big leaguers.   Team management is short changing those of us that are still making it out to The Yard – 14,000 plus change yesterday.    Yesterday’s starting lineup included players hitting .246, .135, .238, .213, and .185.  Fans don’t deserve this!   Just because we put nine players on the field doesn’t mean we’re competing.  It just means we’re playing.   We stinks!

Dante shares a BD with this MLBer who ranks 21st all time in doubles (570), has 354 career dingers, 1345 career RBIs, and a .320 career batting average – all with the same team.   Who am I talking about?

Yesterday it was Justice of the Peace Hilary Harmon Green that got the front page Chron story.   It was more bad coverage for the Greens.

Check it out here.

It is definitely not a pretty picture. Late last week Controller Green sent the Chron the following letter:

“I’d like to clarify and amplify upon some statements in the Chronicle article about my association with Dwayne Jordon.

“I employed him as a contractor for my home. Second, I was never truly his attorney; I was asked to look at his case, and in just a few hours I referred Jordon to another attorney. Third, I had no knowledge of Jordon’s land schemes until he sought my legal judgment which, as I said, I deferred to another attorney. Last, I testified in Jordon’s punishment hearing because I was satisfied with the work on my home and I believed if he were on probation, he would be able to begin making restitution to the families involved in these schemes. While the article stated the prosecutor asked for a 25-year sentence, she actually asked for a life sentence, unusual for a financial crime and especially so when there is a probability of restitution. Jordon pleaded guilty and asked for leniency and stated his intention to repay his victims. The judge in this matter has not yet made a decision regarding punishment.

“The loan I received for improvements to my home was readily approved by the bank that held my original loan and with which I have had a 15-year banking relationship. The bank independently vetted and approved Jordon for his contracting work on my home. Regarding my issues with the Internal Revenue Service, we have worked out a solution, and I am making those payments we agreed upon.”

Ted Cruz was on “Meet the Press” yesterday and E.J. Dionne called him “Senator.”

The Working Man Hero took a shot at Commentary last Friday about my comments in Ericka Mellon’s story on HISD and ethics.  Here is what he said:

The Houston Chronicle has called for ethics reform for the Houston ISD as a condition for an endorsement of the Bond Program.  The Houston Community College System Trustees have already passed a strong Ethics policy.  Question:  Can ethics and the Houston ISD Board coexist?  Not mentioned in the story below, but mentioned before, was the $25,000 payment by just one vendor to one HISD Trustee.  Marc Campos, political consultant, introduces the Unions into the ethics reform equation.  "Silly boy"  Unions are not vendors and do not profit from the Houston ISD;  they represent the employees against the likes of some Trustees bent on rewarding vendor friends and directing tax dollars to them.  For the sake of full disclosure, Marc Campos was hired by one Trustee, Anna Eastman, in her campaign with the Unions backing her opponent (I did not pick this fight Marc).  No wonder he suggests that Unions are somehow district vendors making money off of fat district (bond) contracts.   Now its attack the Unions again.  Good try Marc in attempting to divert our eyes from the real prize – limiting vendor influence in Houston ISD Board spending.

I’m not going to get into a back and forth with him because he misses the point completely. 

There are a number of vendors and others that deal with HISD that didn’t do anything wrong but are now going to be affected if this policy is adopted.    That’s the way it goes.

It is not often that you get a governmental body to take up the issue of ethics and campaign contributions.  It is an opportunity for all parties and interest groups to step up and look at this and review and see what makes sense and what passes the public’s smell test rather than make accusations.  Don’t set yourself up to be the next target of Ericka Mellon, the Chron E-Board, and watchdog groups.  That’s not an attack, that’s advice.

The GOP has a legitimate arsehole running for the U.S. Senate in the Show Me State.

Check it out here.

Rockies first baseman Todd Helton of course has been in a Rockies uniform since 1997 and in his career is batting .320 with 354 dingers, 570 doubles, and 1345 RBIs.  He is currently on the DL and is celebrating his 39th BD today.

Commentary got foul ball numero 3 for the season Saturday night.  I wouldn’t dare to say I snagged it.  It kind of dribbled in my direction.  I kept it.

Misery takes a break today before the team heads to San Luis.

 

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