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Archive for June, 2011

GOP State Senator Jeff Wentworth bought an ad in the SA Express News accusing Dem State Senator Leticia Van De Putte of “race baiting” because Sen. Van De Putte agrees with Commentary that the GOP are pulling an “El Degüello” on Lone Star State Latinos during the Regular and Special Legislative Sessions. Let’s see now:  Voter I.D., sanctuary cities, redistricting – ya’ll asked for it!  Check out the Chron story on Wentworth crying.

Speaking of, Smokey the Oso briefed U.S. Senator John McCain yesterday and said that paperless folks were starting the wildfires out in Arizona.  Light my fuego, light my fuego, light my fuego…….oh, brother!

Of course, I’m betting that if the GOP controlled legislature sent to Guv Dude a bill that said no texting in Espanol while driving, Dude would sign it in a second.

The red light camera folks have decided to play hardball with The Mayor and the City of H-Town.   Check out the story.   Hey, that’s their right.  This is going to be an interesting one.  Here is what my pal CM Anne Clutterbuck had to say:  "It would be a violation of the will of the people to turn them back on.  Even though I was a supporter of red light cameras and believe that they save lives, the people have spoken. But there’s no doubt we’ll be owing a lot of money for breach of contract."

What MLB pitcher tossed the most wild pitches ever?

I kind of thought Guv Dude was reading Commentary but I guess he’s not and is going to get into the race after all.  How else do you explain adding the “pat down” stuff to the special session list? 

How much has changed over the past 12 years?  12 years ago around this time, W was receiving a steady stream of the national GOP elite including former cabinet officials, members of Congress, and major donors. Today, best I can tell, nobody is coming to see Guv Dude.  Instead he’s spending his time throwing red meat at the Tea Baggers and right wing social conservatives.

12 years ago today W was operating in a bi-partisan legislative atmosphere with a GOP Lite Guv, a Dem House Speaker, a one seat GOP edge in the Senate, and a 78-72 Dem edge in the House.  We all know what the picture up in Austin looks like today.

12 years ago today the national talking heads were talking up W because he liked to hug Latinos.  Today, Dude is heading up the “El Degüello” effort against Lone Star State Latinos.  Stay tuned!

Hall of Fame great Nolan Ryan of course tossed 277 wild pitches.

All I can say about last night’s game in Arlington is that we looked (JA) Happless.  It didn’t help that ‘Stros third baseman Chris Johnson flubbed a grounder that allowed the first Ranger batter to get on base and that’s all she wrote!

 

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For Latinos of the Lone Star State, you may as well call the Regular and Special Called Session “El Degüello.”  No quarter!  No prisoners were taken.

A federal judge ruled on Friday that last November’s vote on the City of H-Town’s red light program didn’t count.  So it is back to the drawing board for the H-Town Mayor and City Council.

According to the City Attorney, the City has three options.  One:  we can cancel the contract with the red light camera folks but that will cost us a few mil that we don’t have right now.  Two:  we can turn the red light cameras on but that will just p__s off over half the voters that don’t want them.  It would be an F-you move that I don’t think they should risk.  The Mayor and incumbent members of Council with just token opposition this November might see that token opposition turn into serious opposition.  Three:  we can call for an election where the voters get to pick one of the first two options.

Commentary is thinking that option three might be the best course to take.    However, this election would be a lot different from a turnout perspective.   In 2010, close to 41% of the city voters turned out in a gubernatorial election to vote down Prop 3.  In the November, 2009 mayoral race with four serious candidates, we didn’t even have a 20% turnout.  If the Mayor doesn’t get a serious opponent this time, we’re talking about a turnout in the mid-teens.   Only the hard core voter will turnout.

As I recall, Kuffer said after last November’s election that red lights won in GOP and Anglo Dem neighborhoods.  Red lights lost in Latino and African American neighborhoods.

It would appear that the red light folks get their money under either option so they could just sit out the election and wait for their checks to start rolling in. Well, since we’re in this predicament because the red light folks bungled the way they ran the campaign last November, they are going to have to come up with the bucks for another campaign this time.

They also need to come up with a completely new campaign team.  Remember they were the ones that said their polling was showing them (Prop 3) winning and Prop 1 (Rebuild Houston) losing.  Ideally, you’d like to see The Mayor have her campaign team running this election since her administration has to deal with the budget mess implications from last November’s election.  Her team may be tied up though at least until they find out if they will have a semi serious opponent.

Stay tuned on this one for sure!

How many relief pitchers are in the Baseball Hall of Fame and can you name them?

Saturday afternoon CEWDEM did another drive-by on the Bolivar Fraga for City Council At-Large Campaign   on voting in the 2010 GOP Primary.   Fraga had said he wanted to vote for a family friend that was running as a GOPer – huh!  Of course, they don’t ask me.  A good pal of mine  that is in the journalism profession once told me that he occasionally votes in the GOP primary so he can get on their direct mail list and keep up with what both parties are sending out in heated elections.   GOP candidates that run in GOP primaries in the Lone Star State these days pretty much have to sign off on an “El Degüello” platform against folks of the Latino persuasion.  (Hunker Down and a few others are the exception.)  In addition, as I recall there were a number of statewide 2010 Dem Primary races, including the chance to vote against The Kinkhole, a Latina running for Lite Guv against a respected former DA, and a number of local judicial races with Latino and Latina candidates. I would have gone with the “I want to see their mail” response.

This whole deal has kind of got messy for the Fraga campaign.  It is not how they envisioned their campaign should have rolled out.  Some of their folks said he voted in the GOP Primary to vote against Guv Dude.  He said he and his Dad wanted to help out a GOP bud.  Now CEWDEM is pointing out that Fraga’s Mom voted in the Dem Primary.  I’m sure the David Robinson, Kristi Thibaut, and Jennifer Pool campaigns are sitting back and just loving this.  What a mess!

Oh, did I mention last Friday that CEWDEM was going to put a bull’s eye on the Fraga Campaign.

Congrats go to first baseman Matt Luna who just graduated from HISD’s Lamar High School for making the Chron’s All-Greater Houston High School Baseball Second Team.  The Chron got it wrong.  Matt should have been First Team.  He had an outstanding season.   I’m sure My Best Friend Al and Julie Luna are proud of Matt’s latest accomplishment.

Five relief pitchers of course are in the Baseball Hall of Fame and they are Hoyt Wilhelm, Rollie Fingers, Dennis Eckersley, Bruce Sutter, and Goose Gossage of course.

Numero 45 is celebrating his 35th BD today.  Happy Birthday El Caballo!

Commentary finally got around to checking out the movie “Inception.”  That’s a very cool flick so check it out.

We took two out of three in LA this past weekend and have a better record on the road (14-21) than at The Yard (13-25) as we begin a 12 day stretch of interleague play this evening. 

 

 

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The Chron has a story today about HISD Trustee Larry Marshall taking a trip at the expense of the Costa Rican government to study how they dispense health insurance.  Check out the story here.  The trip was arranged by State Rep. Borris Miles who handles flood insurance for HISD.   That is kind of odd.  The Chron article doesn’t say why the government of Costa Rica put out the invite and picked up the tab.  What would they get out of the deal?  When asked why he (Marshall) didn’t disclose the trip, he said he treated it like getting invited to a ‘Stros game – huh!  I don’t know about that.  A couple of beers, some nachos, and peanuts are not the same as taking a trip to Central America.   In reading the piece it looks like no laws were broken.  It just make the readers think that some HISD board members like taking free trips arranged by vendors – not good at a time when they are having to lay-off folks over at HISD.

CEWDEM sent out a stinging take on the H-Town CM Jolanda Jones complaint.   CM Sullivan picked Balls of Holly to represent him.  CM Jones picked CM Bradford.  CEWDEM implies that Balls of Holly won’t be impartial of course I don’t know if impartiality is a requirement.   Balls of Holly, Bradford, and The Mayor will get together Monday on this matter.  The get together is not open to the public – drats!

CEWDEM also took the opportunity to take a swipe at Balls of Holly’s choice to replace her on City Council, Bolivar Fraga.  I’m thinking that Fraga will be a CEWDEM target from here on out – ouch!  Stay tuned!

The ‘Stros are in LA for three.  The Dodgers have retired 10 jersey numeros.  On June 4, 1972, the first three numeros were retired.  Who did they belong to?

The H-Town Mayor got around to implementing again Rebuild Houston.  Of course nothing will satisfy the opponents.  I have to give credit to the Mayor for saying she owed it to the voters to get it right.  A whole lot of other elected officials would have ducked or blamed others.  Way to go Mayor!

Sandy Koufax (32), Roy Campanella (39), and Jackie Robinson (42) of course had their jersey numeros retired by the Dodgers on June 4, 1972.

We had a Brett Wallace throwing error that cost us the game the other night.  Yesterday, Michael Bourn dropped a ball that he should have caught and it cost us the game.  We went 2-8 on the homie and have the worst record in the MLB.  We are definitely not focused! 

 

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Commentary is hoping that the folks that run the Lone Star State Dem Party read today’s AP story on the Latino vote and what is being planned by the Spanish language TV networks.  Everybody knows that the Lone Star State Dem Party has done a p__s poor job of engaging the Latino vote so maybe they will read today’s AP story and bring in some folks of the Latino persuasion that will place the highest priority on dealing with the Latino vote.  Here are bits from the piece:

Spanish-language television news is meeting a surge in Hispanic voting muscle and viewership with greatly expanded domestic coverage this year, just in time for the 2012 election season.

Industry experts say the growth could affect next year’s election by increasing awareness of political issues among U.S. Spanish speakers and by encouraging more to vote in a population whose participation has lagged others. Members of bilingual households who prefer English are also expected to be influenced by the newscasts when they watch with parents and grandparents. The change comes as the latest Census data shows Hispanics propelled more than half of the country’s population growth over the last decade.

And:
The nation’s three top Spanish-language broadcast and cable networks are beefing up their election coverage and increasing get-out-the vote efforts. Of the nation’s more than 20 million Hispanic citizens over 18, nearly half are bilingual and about a quarter are more comfortable in Spanish. Meanwhile, less than a third said they voted in 2010, according to Census data analyzed by the independent Pew Hispanic Center. Comparatively, nearly half of their white counterparts said they voted.

Still, the Pew study showed a record number of Hispanics voted in a non-presidential year, boosting their share of votes and showing their increasing political power. Latino turnout could be key in 2012 swing states like Florida, New Mexico, Nevada and Colorado.   Here is the piece.

Of course, Commentary is betting that the folks that run the Lone Star State Dem Party will stay the course and continue to run the Dem Party into the ditch.   The Spanish language media knows our vote is growing and important but I don’t think our State Dem Party does.

Speaking of, the GOP up at the State Capitol keeps banging away at Latinos with their “sanctuary city” assault. 

Burkablog came out with his Ten Best and Ten Worst Lone Star State legislators and some folks are complaining about the fact that not a single Dem made the Worst List.  I don’t see how one can be “Worst” worthy by getting run over.   You can however get “Best” worthy by making a valiant or memorable effort getting run over – got it!

The Pirates are still in town.  Who was the last Pirate to win the NL dinger title for a season and when?

The Texas Tribune has a piece today on a higher education “Coalition of Excellence that was just formed.  My good friend Port Commissioner Janiece Longoria is part of the coalition.  Here is a bit of the piece:

The list of founding members of the new "Coalition for Excellence" totals more than 200 and — with some exceptions — reads like a veritable who’s who of higher ed boosters in established Texas circles. Among the founding members are former University of Texas System Chancellor Dan Burck, former UT President Peter Flawn, and former UT regents like H. Scott Caven, JANIECE LONGORIA and student regent Kyle Kalkwarf.

Prominent UT professor Adm. Bobby Inman, a former director of the National Security Agency, among other things, is involved. Former Republican Lt. Gov. Bill Ratliff and former Democratic Lt. Gov. Bill Hobby are both on the list.   Check out the article.

Hall of Fame great Willie Stargell of course led the NL with 44 dingers as a Pirate in 1973.  Willie Stargell is no longer with us.

I don’t know what to say about our very shaky bullpen.  We let a three to two lead get away.  The only good thing about last night was getting foul ball numero cinco that I didn’t bring home.  It is a nine inning lunch break with the Pirates this afternoon.

 

 

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Commentary said he wasn’t going to get into the charges and stuff being leveled at H-Town CM Jolanda Jones.  I don’t know much about them.  So I won’t.  However, at yesterday’s H-Town City Council public session, a number of folks showed up to speak in support of CM Jones.  Nobody showed up to speak against her.  I can’t say the same about the letters to the Chron.  CM Jones got hammered today in the letters to the editor section.  Check them out.  There is supposed to be a gathering of all the parties on this matter pretty soon.  I wonder if the meeting is open to the public.  Stay tuned!

I’ve said it before.  Guv Dude spends way too much time in front of the mirror every morning.  Now he’s comparing himself to a prophet.  Here is the quote: "a prophet is generally not loved in his hometown." This was said in response to him being more popular outside of the Lone Star State.  Let’s see.  We’ve had governors, senators, millionaires, U.S. representatives, business leaders, doctors, and movie actors run for prez.  I’ve never heard of a prophet running for prez so that’s one of the reasons why I think Dude doesn’t make the race.

The Pirates are still in town so who was the last Pirate to win the NL Cy Young Award and when?

According to the Chron, it looks like some bond brokers got over on the County big time.  Check out the Chron story.  How does this happen?  Aren’t there check and balances out there to prevent this with all the money that is made off of these deals?  I wonder where the buck will stop on this one.  It has to land on somebody’s doorstep. 

Another Latino entered the race for the H-Town City Council, District J race.  Welcome to the party Rodrigo Cañedo!  Rodrigo is a Sharpstown resident and a small business owner.  We will have more on Rodrigo later.

Al Roker and Jenna Bush and “The Today Show” are in town this morning raising funds and supplies for Case de Esperanza. ‘Stros skipper Brad Mills, pitcher Mark Melancon, and catcher J.R. Towles are also on hand to help out.

Commentary got an email yesterday from folks that are trying to get Linda Whitley to run against HISD Board President Paula Harris out in District IV.  I don’t know Linda Whitley.  I don’t know who sent me the email.  I don’t know who is behind her.  I don’t know who is supporting her.  I wonder if it has anything to do with that Texas Watch piece that came out last week.  Stay tuned on this one!

Doug Drabek of course won the NL Cy Young Award in 1990 as a Pirate.

The ‘Stros got rid of their pitching coach yesterday as the bats went silent last night – drats!

 

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SoCal Latinos on the whole in terms of political sophistication are way out ahead of Lone Star State Latinos. Fifteen or so years ago when California GOP Governor Pete Wilson went after paperless folks, players in SoCal made a huge investment in Latino political empowerment and the political landscape was altered for the better.  Latino political empowerment is a huge factor in the success of California Dems.

SoCal Latino political leaders and organizations have now set their sights on MLB Commissioner Bud Selig and the way he’s treating the owner of the LA Dodgers.  Here is from a press release yesterday:

A growing number of Latino organizations are speaking out in support of embattled Los Angeles Dodgers owner Frank McCourt, arguing that McCourt and the Dodgers have done more for the Latino community and communities of color than the last Dodger owners combined.  Citing the building of one dozen “Dream Fields” in inner-city neighborhoods throughout Los Angeles and the Dodger’s philanthropic efforts to literally thousands of organizations, Latino leaders spoke out in support of McCourt.

“In seven short years, Frank McCourt has improved previously weak relations with the Latino community by being accessible and by investing his money in our community and other communities of color,” said former Congressman Ambassador Esteban Torres.  “He has built a dozen state-of-the-art “Dream Fields”, and has donated to literally thousands of worthwhile organizations.  He didn’t have to do these things, he chose to, and that’s what separates him from a number of folks, including previous Dodgers owners.”

Here are the organizations that are going after Selig:  William C. Velasquez Institute, MALDEF, Mexican American Political Association (MAPA), Community Union (CU), Central American Resource Center (CARECEN), Anahuak Youth Sports Association, National Alliance of Latin American and Caribbean Communities (NALACC), National Day Laborers Organizing Network (NDLON), Council of Mexican Federations (COFEM), and Centaur North.

Here is what they also put out:

Latino leaders were quick to draw a comparison between McCourt’s responsiveness and accessibility to the Latino community with Major League Baseball Commissioner Bud Selig’s record of turning a blind eye to the concerns of the community. Leaders also pointed to the NBA and its willingness to allow the Phoenix Suns to change their jerseys to “Los Suns”, in opposition to Arizona’s SB 1070. When communities across the country called upon Selig to move baseball’s All-Star game from Phoenix (scheduled for July of 2011), Selig refused.

“Selig has turned a cold shoulder to the Latino community,” said Antonio Gonzalez, President of the William C. Velasquez Institute (WCVI). “He was silent on SB 1070. He refused to even consider moving the All-Star game from Phoenix, Arizona. He sat silent while Carlos Santana was booed in Georgia for taking a stand in opposition to Georgia’s version of SB 1070, and his generic response to our May 13, 2011 letter to him was inacceptable. We formally request a meeting with Commissioner Selig.”

In their letter to Selig, Latino leaders asked that Selig rescind his receivership of the Dodgers, approve the capitalization plan proposed by Dodger owner McCourt, and engage the Dodgers in an open and transparent dialogue that will lead to a fair and equitable long-term resolution between Selig and the Dodgers, its fans, and the Latino community.  To date Selig has not substantively addressed the requests.

“The Dodgers are too important to our community and to the greater Los Angeles community. We aren’t going to go away. We will fight for our Dodgers against this unwelcome and unwarranted attack by such an insensitive interloper as Bud Selig,” concluded Nativo Lopez, President of Mexican American Political Association (MAPA).

If I’m Bud Selig, I don’t know if I want this problem.  SoCal Latinos definitely know how to play hardball.   Stay tuned!

What a difference a couple of time zones make.  SoCal Latinos are taking on the MLB while Lone Star State Latinos are taking on GOP Tea Baggers that think we ARE THE PROBELMO!

The Pirates visit The Yard for three starting this evening.  Who was the last Pirate to win the NL MVP Award and when?

I am sure GOPers from the Clear Lake area weren’t too happy with last night’s GOP Prez debate.  Here is what Newt said about NASA:

“NASA has become an absolute case study in why bureaucracy cannot innovate.  What we have is bureaucracy after bureaucracy, failure after failure.”

When asked for a show of hands on who would continue to spend money on NASA’s human space flight program – none of the GOP wannabees raised their hand.  Uh-oh!

Barry, Barry, Bonds of course won the 1992 NL MVP Award as a Pirate.

Hunter Pence went 3 for 4 last night with a two run dinger and four RBIs.  He is the top ten in five major MLB offensive categories today:  88 hits, 19 doubles, .325 average, 138 total bases, and 50 RBIs. 

Dante and I sat in Pam-In-Charge’ s seats last night and Dante had a couple of balls tossed to him by Pence and Michael Bourn.  We finally got a win over The ATL – whew!

 

 

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Commentary knew this was going to happen.  First of all I prefer to keep the church and state separated but Guv Dude doesn’t.  The Chron checked up on how much Dude gives to the church and it ain’t much.  Check it out.  The more Dude lets this talk about running for prez go forward, the more stories like this we are going to see.  I still think Dude doesn’t make the race.

H-Town CM Mike Sullivan filed a formal complaint against CM Jolanda Jones.  Commentary isn’t going to say much about the deal because I don’t much about the deal.  I think I will let City Council members sort through this. 

Who managed the 1969 Amazing Mets when they won the World Serious?

Commentary is not much of an NBA fan but I do know that LeBron and D-Wade painted a big bull’s eye on their arse last year with The Decision and the preseason premature championship pep rally.  So here is what LeBron had to say last night after having his arse handed to him by the Mavs:

“At the end of the day, all the people that was rooting on me to fail, at the end of the day they have to wake up tomorrow and have the same life that they had before they woke up today.  They have the same personal problems they had today.  I’m going to continue to live the way I want to live and continue to do the things that I want to do with me and my family and be happy with that.  They can get a few days or a few months or whatever the case may be on being happy about not only myself, but the Miami Heat not accomplishing their goal, but they have to get back to the real world at some point.”

Did I say sore loser!  We stinks!

Speaking of, some national sports columnists put out a story this weekend about the possibility of the ‘Stros moving to the AL West.  That’s news to the ‘Stros.  The Chron Sports Columnist that thinks he knows more than all of us combined says the move is a good idea.  Oh brother!

That would mean more games on the West coast that start at 9 pm.

That would mean the dreaded DH that makes the games longer.

That would mean inter league play every day instead of just a few weeks a year.

That would mean ending our stories past with teams like the Cubbies, San Luis, and Dodgers.

That would mean we would have to beat the Yankees or Red Sox just to get to the World Serious.

I prefer to beat the Yankees or Red Sox in the World Serious.

Gil Hodges of course managed the 1969 Amazing Mets when they beat B’More in five games.

Commentary is up to four foul balls this year but I still haven’t brought one home.  I don’t know what to say about the ‘Stros.  I’m out of words!!

 

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