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Archive for August, 2009

H-Town’s Mayoral candidates still do not want to SHOW ME THE TV so I have to give the advantage at this time to Annise Parker. The later the ad wars get going, the better for Annise. Let’s not forget that she has been on a citywide ballot half a dozen times now. She has also served in a high profile position – City Controller – for over five and a half years. She has better name ID on August 18, 2009.

I was discussing the race with one of the best in the business yesterday and he said a lower voter turnout in November benefits Annise. I have to agree because I think she has the most passionate supporters. The way Commentary sees it today I don’t think H-Town voters will be overwhelmed by TV ads this campaign season so that could contribute to one of the lowest turnouts in a while. Stay tuned!

Commentary was checking out Hutch on Chron.com make her announcement speech and smack dab behind her was Dwight Boykins. I can’t believe I helped that fella out a while back when he ran for H-Town City Council.

This past weekend, the Chron’s E-Board came out with a take on City of H-Town term limits. They basically came out for another version of term limits – three four year terms.  Check it out.  If you are going to take on term limits, go all the way and eliminate them altogether.

Commentary will never figure out baseballnomics. The dead last Washington Nationals with the worst record in the MLB signed the #1 draft choice for $15.1 mil. Stephen Strasburg sure better get to the majors quick and earn that money as folks in D.C. are going to be paying $10 for a sixteen ounce Bud Light – yikes!

Cecil Puede said we would get 90 wins this season. That means we have to go 33-11 for the rest of the season as the Fish come in for three starting this evening.

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Hutch kicks off her campaign in Galveston County this morning – good luck! Hutch obviously reads Commentary because she is going to say that Guv Dude has been in office way too long. Meanwhile, the Dem State Senator from Travis County said he wasn’t going to run for Guv even though he said he would have won – huh – yeah, sure. Usually, the way it works, if you can win then run. Of course, he also probably read Commentary because he knows he couldn’t win because he couldn’t figure out how to engage the growing Latino vote. Tom Schieffer is wondering why Lone Star State Dems aren’t embracing his candidacy – huh! Maybe it has something to do with that big hickey on his next given to him by 43 that just won’t go away.

CEWDEM sent out some stuff this past weekend on 10 reasons why folks shouldn’t vote for the H-Town Mayor or John Sharp in the U.S. Senate race. I think some of the shots at The Mayor were off the mark. The fella that took the shot obviously doesn’t know jack about environmental law in the Lone Star State. They are kind of skewed in favor of industry. The H-Town Mayor has had to be very creative in taking on industry. I want the fella to go ask industry lobbyists what they think of the H-Town Mayor.

It looks like DeLay will be “Dancing with the Stars.” I wonder if they are going to have him wear tight pants. I wonder if he is going to wear a silk shirt that is open all the way to his belly button – yikes!

Commentary’s weekend for the most part was pretty miserable. The AC here went out Friday afternoon and the AC repair guys couldn’t get here until this morning. Heck, it was hotter inside than outside.

Then Tiger got run yesterday – ouch!

Then The President’s folks signaled that they were going to punt on health care reform. It looks like they are fixing to take the reform out of the debate. What is the whole point in having Dems control Congress and The White House? I sure hate to see scoreboard go to the insurance giants.

The misery continued as Wandy got lit up Friday night and we lost two out of three in Milwaukee. Cecil Puede said we would get 90 wins this season. That means we have to go 33-11 for the rest of the season – ouch.

About the only good thing that happened this weekend was taking in “The Time Traveler’s Wife.” It is definitely a different take on time travel flicks but you need to check it out.

 

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Yesterday, Commentary’s shop sent out an email announcing the supporters for Rick Rodriguez, candidate for H-Town City Council, At Large, Position 1. We will be helping him out this election season. Rodriguez is being taken very seriously. One opposing campaign asked him to consider running in At-Large, Position 4 race – no thanks. Another major interest group asked Rodriguez to run in At-Large, Position 5 – no thanks again. It is pretty obvious to Commentary that local political players know that Rodriguez has a strong base and is a force to deal with. Stay tuned!

If Gene Locke becomes the next H-Town Mayor, he is going to build us a Latino Museum. That’s pretty cool. I wonder if he’ll let me display my foul ball collection. We can call it the “Most Foul Balls Caught by an H-Town Latino Exhibit.” Heck, the stuff I got in my office and in storage could probably fill a wing of the museum. Heck, I wonder if he’ll go for a deal where I give him daily positive run in Commentary from now until November 3 in return for him naming a wing of the museum “The Commentary Wing.” Sounds like a good deal to me.

Commentary gets the feeling that Cong. Sheila Jackson Lee actually believes that any kind of run – good or bad – is good run. She probably thinks the run she is getting on You Tube regarding the cell phone call at her town hall meeting on health care reform is good run. She also probably thinks that her performance on CNN yesterday afternoon with Rick Sanchez was A-OK. We will see!

Commentary will be watching Tiger go for another Major this weekend.

Cecil Puede said we would get 90 wins this season. That means we have to go 34-13 for the rest of the season – ouch. Commentary will be surprised if Mike Hampton is a ‘Stro next year. After last night, reliever Chris Sampson was sent to Round Rock and he was not too happy. Well, I was not too happy watching him get shelled last night. The ‘Stros now limp into Milwaukee for three this weekend.

 

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At yesterday’s H-Town City Council meeting, The Mayor kind of announced that he might want to assemble a special committee of H-Town’s leaders to look at H-Town’s Mayor-Controller-City Council term limit policy and maybe come forward with changes. Brad Olson has a piece in today’s Chron.  Check it out. 

Like Commentary said in the piece, I don’t think the will is there to make changes. Back in 1991, the will was there to vote to impose term limits. A lot of folks were disgusted with what they thought was arrogance coming from our electeds at City Hall. We had a mayor that was serving her fifth term, and some council members with a dozen or more years of service. Conservative activists put in their own money into a petition drive and got the required 20,000 plus signatures to put the term limit referendum on the ballot. They then put in more of their own money and then waged an aggressive and passionate campaign and won.

I don’t see or sense passion on the side of the anti term limits folks to change things anytime soon. It doesn’t seem to be a concern or priority for folks that usually fund citywide campaign initiatives. It doesn’t seem to be on the radar of grass roots organizations, labor, or political organizations. In fact, folks have kind of gotten used to the current system.

Unfortunately, in order for an anti term limit movement to emerge here in H-Town, there needs to be some sort of event or clear sign that H-Town city government is broken, failing to deliver basic services, or engulfed in scandals because of term limits. So far, that is not the case. I would like to think that you can go out there and make the case by simply saying the bureaucrats are waiting out the council members and we can’t make needed policy alterations so we need to change things. I don’t think voters would respond to that argument. Nor would you raise their interest by trying to make the case that a council member needs more than six years to complete certain projects.

Until we can present clear evidence that term limits are hindering the city of H-Town’s ability to serve the public good, we’re stuck with them.

Commentary was reading about the problemos Austin folks are having with their new parking meter solar power driven gizmos. We got ours a couple of years ago and it took a few tries before I got a handle on them. Everything will be OK in time.

Cecil Puede said we would get 90 wins this season. That means we have to go 34-14 for the rest of the season. We finally caught a Fish last night as The Big Puma returned and Pence got him two dingers and six RBIs as we continue to hang and try to catch another in our last night in South Florida.

 

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The Chron’s Columnist has a piece today about Cong. Sheila Jackson Lee’s Town Hall Meeting on Health Care Reform. Turns out the GOP’s Jared didn’t have to send out thugs to mess things up.  Check it out.  She got on her cell phone while someone was talking and asking a question. You gotta be freaking cwazy! Come on! That sends the absolute wrong message!  There ought to be a law banning town hall meeting hosts from getting on their cell phones during their own freaking town hall meetings!

The Chron also has a piece about Cong. Jackson Lee’s Town Hall Meeting and how she didn’t promote it.  Check it out. 

That’s pretty good. We’re using the recess to shoot ourselves in the foot on health care reform. Like I said a few days ago, I wish The President could choose his own Democratic Congressional Leadership Team because the folks currently in charge have managed to get rolled pretty good on this.

Heck, they aren’t town hall meetings. They are town hall melees!

The next time I run in to Hillary I’ll make sure not ask how Bill is doing.

FYI: Remember Jason Lane? He caught the last out of the 2005 NLCS that sent us to the World Serious. He’s now batting .245 as a member of the Las Vegas 51s, Toronto’s AAA affiliate.

Speaking of, recently released Russ Ortiz is now a member of the Scranton Wilkes-Barre Yankees, the AAA affiliate of the NY Yankees.

Cecil Puede said we would get 90 wins this season. That means we have to go 35-14 for the rest of the season and after last night, well, like they said in “Godfather, II” – “difficult, but not impossible.” I actually thought a 7-2 lead would be good enough but what do I know? Hey, we caught a Fish last night but threw it back – yikes!

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Some H-Town Dems kind of slapped around H-Town Mayoral candidate Gene Locke a while back because he had my pal Jacob Monty – a Guv Dude appointee – serving as his campaign treasurer. I wonder what these same H-Town Dems have to say about H-Town Mayoral candidate Annise Parker hiring my pal Sue Walden – who raised dough for DeLay, McCain and Hutch. Maybe it is a case of different strokes for different folks.

H-Town Mayoral candidate Peter Brown’s campaign reads Commentary. They ditched their fundraising event that was being hosted by a city appointed METRO Board Member which is a no-no in H-Town City Council Campaign ordinances. I wonder if the $500 penalty will be imposed for this mess up.

The Chron’s Bradley Olson had a piece in this past Sunday’s Chron about how the 4 mayoral candidates will pay for more police officers to fight crime.       Check it out.   If you read closely they are not really telling us how they will pay for more. Back in 1991, then candidate Bob Lanier (Commentary was working for him) told us he was going to snatch away METRO funds to pay for more law enforcement. Heck, he even said how much. The current crop isn’t really giving us specifics. They are just giving us tough talk without the details. Annise is the Controller so she ought to be able to point specifically to a pot of dough she can use. Gene has all the City Hall insiders helping him out including Mayor Bob so he ought to also be able to ID some buckos. Peter is the creative one so he at least ought to make up or create a stash of loot he can use for more cops on the street. SHOW ME THE MONEY!

SHOW ME THE TV!

Commentary has to hand it to the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) promoters for integrating the UFC into the health care reform town hall meetings across the U.S. of A. Speaking of, the local GOP Chair wants local GOPers to crash Cong. Sheila Jackson Lee’s Health Care Reform Town Hall Meetings. This has got to be one of the most stupid suggestions of the political year. Can’t he be criminally charged with premeditated arson or conspiracy to commit arson? It sounds like “Jared the Dumbarse” wants to send his right wing folks out there to a Town Hall meeting hosted by one of Congress’ most liberal members for the simple reason of creating a You Tube sensation where somebody could literally get hurt. Way to go you dumbarse!

Somebody suggested that maybe I ought to hold a baby name contest to forward to The Lovelier Wendy and James to help them make a selection. Heck, this is their first born not some giraffe that was born over at the Houston Zoo – sorry, no thanks.

Commentary forgot to mention that Tiger scored career victory number 70 on the PGA Tour this past weekend.

FYI: Remember Chris Burke? He’s now a member of the Gwinnett Braves, the Triple A affiliate of the Atlanta Braves. Gwinnett is in Georgia. A little bit of baseball irony in that Burke’s most famous ‘Stros moment was getting the walk-off dinger against the Braves in the bottom of the 18th in the NLDS back in 2005.

Commentary also forgot to mention that Numero 45 got career dinger Numero 300 this past Saturday at The Yard.

Cecil Puede said we would get 90 wins this season. That means we have to go 35-15 for the rest of the season. I don’t know about that. Like Numero 45 says in today’s Chron – “Every night we lose, it’s getting tougher” as we try to catch some Fish over the next three days in South Florida with Roy O returning to the mound tonight – finally!

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Commentary watched George Lopez on HBO this past weekend as 14,000 SA “Mexicans went to see him in a down economy!”

He didn’t waste time blistering the 31 GOPers that voted against Judge Sotomayor including the “cabrona” from the Lone Star State – yikes, his words, not mine.

He went on to say the GOP told Latinos “f___ you people!!

Lopez responded that the GOP “will never get the Latino vote!”

His text message stuff was classic from OMG to ADM to MMLV – ditto yikes!

He also laid it on Lou Dobbs, former Governor Palin, and the weather folks for blaming us for the bad weather a la “El Nino.”

He pretty much summed it up by saying “what can Brown do for you?”

I would highly recommend the show on HBO to all wise Latinas and Latinos.

Dems would be wiser to bring in George Lopez in 2010 for sure.

The Austin American Statesman has a piece about the Dems chances next year. Check it out.   One of the consultants in the piece makes reference to the role South Texas leaders will play. That is all fine and dandy but once again it is proof that folks still don’t get that Latinos in the H-Town area will have to be engaged to even have a shot at winning. The article talks about the current crop of folks running or thinking about running. They are probably all nice fellas but none of them have what it takes to fully engage the Latino voter – no se puede!

Commentary got a fundraiser invitation from H-Town Mayoral candidate Peter Brown yesterday hosted by a METRO Board Member – a city appointee. I don’t know about that since it is a violation of city campaign ordinance for a METRO board member appointed by the city to solicit campaign funds for city candidates. That is a penalty for sure and a fumble and stumble by Brown. No se puede!

Commentary was at The Yard this past weekend and saw a new product by Sam Adams called “Twisted Tea.” It is some sort of tea flavored malt beer. They called it a “hard iced tea.” I also don’t know about that but it was selling.

Cecil Puede said we would get 90 wins this season. That means we have to go 35-16 for the rest of the season. Well, to do that we had better start playing a lot better as we go Fishing for the next four in South Florida.

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Yesterday at 2:14 pm CDT Commentary was in the office and watched Senator Al Franken announce the confirmation of Judge Sonia Sotomayor – finally. Scoreboard Wise Latina! Commentary has to take his hat off to those GOPers that voted to confirm: Lamar Alexander (TN), Kit Bond (MO), Susan Collins (ME), Lindsey Graham (SC), Judd Gregg (NH), Richard Lugar (IN), Mel Martinez (FL), Olympia Snowe (ME) and George Voinovich (OH). They didn’t buy into the GOP BS like the two Lone Star State Senators who brought shame to our state and totally disrespected the growing Latino community. In my book, they are the lowest of the low….tsk, tsk, tsk! We are a state rich in Latino heritage and culture and even have tons of Spanish language names of counties, cities, streets, parks, and rivers and they said no se puede! They represent state leadership that doesn’t think much about folks like Commentary.

Commentary also takes his hat off to The President. He definitely gets it in regards to the growing Latino community. I just wish Lone Star State Dem leadership did too.

Commentary was watching CNN last night and they had folks grade everyone and everyone got bad marks including The President, the Dem leadership in Congress, the GOP leadership in Congress, and the media. Commentary didn’t send in a grade in but I would have given The President an A (I would have given him an A+ if he had served up St. Arnold last week), the Dem leadership a D+ (they are in control but don’t seem to close the right deals and then go on and buy luxury jets for themselves after they chewed out auto execs for not flying coach – heck, I wish The President could pick who he wanted to lead the Dems in Congress), the GOP leadership an F (all they are trying to do is make The President look bad), and the media I don’t give grades to.

Commentary forgot to mention that the ‘Stros went 15-13 in July and the Chron said we would go 14-12 (we had a couple of make-up games added to the mix). The Chron said we would be 55-48 heading into August when we were actually 51-52. We got the Brewers coming in for three this weekend and need to gain some ground for sure.

 

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I probably won’t make many friends but legislative bodies including the H-Town City Council need folks like CM Jolanda Jones. Yesterday the H-Town City Council took up the issue of hiring a couple of law firms to check out the charges of racism and sexism over at the Fire Department. Jolanda wasn’t cool to this approach and raised some questions about processes during the council meeting. I don’t always agree with Jolanda on tactics, but I’d rather have questions asked on sensitive matters, rather than silence and only to find out later that questions should have been asked. Check out the story in the Chron. 

Here some parts of the Chron piece: “Several council members said they were concerned that law firms Thompson and Horton, L.L.P. and Lemond and Lemond, L.L.C had ties that were too close to the city for the kind of independent review that was needed amid multiple allegations of racial and sexual harassment in the department in recent months.

“’It just doesn’t smell right,’ said City Councilwoman Jolanda Jones, who made numerous critiques of the contract before voting against it along with City Councilmen Mike Sullivan and James Rodriguez.

“Jones noted that the information the firms find could eventually be kept from the public through invoking attorney-client privilege and asked repeatedly whether they would be required to produce a written report after completing the probe, a possibility City Attorney Arturo Michel has said he has yet to decide on. She also said that the firms’ close ties to the city and the involvement of senior city officials and firefighters in the investigation all would preclude an independent examination of the department’s problems.

“’I don’t see where anything is truly independent,’ she said.”

One of CM James Rodriguez’ concerns was that he wanted to have OIG finish its investigation of the graffiti incident at one of the fire stations that prompted all this mess before getting into hiring law firms and experts.

Also over at H-Town City Hall, the Chron has two pieces today on the City getting into the business of enforcing immigration laws which Commentary and others think it is a very bad idea.

Check out the articles: http://www.chron.com/disp/story.mpl/special/immigration/6562285.html  and http://www.chron.com/disp/story.mpl/metropolitan/falkenberg/6562213.html.

Here are some bits from both pieces:

“’From the beginning, we have said that we are not advocating keeping violent criminals in the country,’ said Cesar Espinosa, an immigrant advocate who has helped organize protests of the city’s participation in 287(g). ‘If people have committed serious crimes, then they should be punished by the law. What we’re afraid of is this leading to the detention of people who have committed minor offenses.’

“But Espinosa said he was concerned about the proposal to only run certain suspects through the database, saying that ‘opens the door for a lot of violations,’ including racial profiling.

And from the other piece:

“Many of them (Latino leaders) still see programs like 287(g) as a way to criminalize immigration violations, which are civil infractions, and feed mistrust in the immigrant community toward law enforcement.

“Michael Olivas, a University of Houston law professor who specializes in higher education and immigration law, said there’s no way to dress up 287(g).

“’It needs to be tweaked in the way that Iraq needs to be tweaked,’ he said. ‘I don’t care how they refine it, it’s a bad idea.’”

Commentary thinks the City of H-Town ought to wash its hands of this mess and walk away.

One Smart Mommy has decided that she won’t run again for the HISD School Board. Check it out in the Chron. 

I’ll say this – she has a very independent streak. Stay tuned on who now gets into the race!

You won’t see it on chron.com but if you are old fashioned like Commentary and still read a hard copy of the Chron you will find a great shot of CM James Rodriguez presenting saddles to the H-Town Mounties – cool.

Someone at The Yard yesterday had one of those hand painted signs that said “Cecil Puede!” Hmm, I guess most ‘Stros fans read Commentary of course yesterday it was no se puede!

My Yard Neighbors asked me about the Go ‘Stros tune they play at The Yard because she might make it her ringtone. I told her I actually still had the 45 rpm that I bought around 30 years ago but I don’t have an rpm player. I fetched it and it is called “Go Go Astros!” I looked at the B Side – guess what – “Vamos Vamos Astros!”  Check it out at and scroll down to the very end of the page.

Meanwhile, the team has a much needed day off. It is starting to get to the point for the dinged up ‘Stros to get on a streak. Of course that’s a tall order considering The Big Puma is still out and Roy O and Wandy are hurting as the Brewers come in for three tomorrow.

 

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We have fantasy baseball and fantasy football. If we had fantasy politics, President Clinton would me my first draft choice for sure.

Commentary wants to know who you call when you need to put out a fire at the fire department.

Am I imagining things or is H-Town Mayoral candidate Peter Brown the only one that is putting out position stuff. SHOW ME THE TV!

Environment Texas put out its 2009 Texas Legislative scorecard and gave One of My Best Friends – Carol Alvarado – a 100% rating – way to go Carol.

HISD is conducting a secret search for a new superintendent. If it is a secret, how come we know about it?

Congrats to Wandy for being Wandyful in July and being named National League Pitcher of the Month for going 4-0 and having an Earned Run Average (ERA) of 0.75.

Meanwhile, the dinged up ‘Stros got run last night pretty bad – it was UGLY. I’m hoping there will be an afternoon delight today!

 

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