Archive for April, 2016

It’s Over?

Sen. Ted Cruz goes with Carly Fiorina in Indiana and Donald Trump counters with Bob Knight. Do I need to say anything more?

You also have to figure that John Boehner getting even didn’t help Cruz.

More and more major GOPers are saying it is a done deal. It is kind of like the Stop Trump movement has fizzled big time. I mean, at this point, who in the GOP will work with Cruz and Gov. John Kasich in Cleveland to stop Trump?

It is the new reality. Acceptance. You asked for it, GOP.

From the Washington Post:

Throughout the Republican Party, from New Hampshire to Florida to California, many leaders, operatives, donors and activists arrived this week at the conclusion they had been hoping to thwart or at least delay: Donald Trump will be their presidential nominee.

An aura of inevitability is now forming around the controversial mogul. Trump smothered his opponents in six straight primaries in the Northeast and vacuumed up more delegates than even the most generous predictions foresaw. He is gaining high-profile ­endorsements by the day — a legendary Indiana basketball coach Wednesday, two House committee chairmen Thursday. And his ­rivals, Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas and Ohio Gov. John Kasich, are making the kind of rushed tactical moves that signal desperation.


“People are realizing that he’s the likely nominee,” said Tim Pawlenty, a former Minnesota governor and onetime endorser of Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida. “The hysteria has died down, and the range of emotion is from resignation to enthusiasm.”


Two prominent GOP establishment congressmen — Bill Shuster of Pennsylvania, who chairs the House Transportation Committee, and Jeff Miller of Florida, who chairs the House Veterans’ Affairs Committee — endorsed Trump on Thursday.

“It’s time for our party to unite behind Donald Trump and focus our time and energy on defeating Hillary Clinton,” Shuster said in a statement.


We are finishing up April, so which pitcher leads MLB in strikeouts this morning?

Here we go again. Same old story. Trying to make H-Town a tourist attraction and once again I will ask – what makes H-Town an attraction for tourists?  That’s not who or what we are. Here is from a Chron story today:

Houston still lags far behind other cities when it comes to attracting tourists, but the head of the local convention bureau said he wants to turn it around by doing a better job selling the city and developing more attractions and events.

“We’ve been asleep at the wheel for the past 10 years on the tourist side,” Mike Waterman, president of the Greater Houston Convention and Visitors Bureau, told a group of about 100 hospitality professionals at a luncheon sponsored by the Hotel and Lodging Association of Greater Houston.

Houston had 14.9 million visitors in 2015, and Waterman wants to ramp that up to 20 million by 2018.

But even that figure pales to tourism in other major cities, he said. New York attracted 54 million visitors last year, Chicago 42 million and San Antonio 31 million.

Most of Houston’s visitors come from around the Houston area. Tourism is the 10th-largest industry in Houston.


We have not been asleep at the wheel. There is just nothing to stay awake for. Please! Stick to going after events and conventions.

David Price of course of the Red Sox leads MLB with 46 Ks.

The ‘Stros have a ticket special where you can go to every Monday thru Thursday game in May for $49.  That’s ten games.  Take the deal.  One of my tickets for one game goes for $50.  Take the deal.

Let’s see how we do in Oakland.

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In the Flesh?

Desperation, desperation, desperation was the word most used yesterday by talking heads on both sides of the aisle to describe the Sen. Ted Cruz VP move.

This is from a story on NBC News’ website:

John Boehner is not a big fan of Ted Cruz.

So much so, in fact, that the former Republican House Speaker told an audience at Stanford University Wednesday that the Texas senator is “Lucifer in the flesh” and a “miserable son of a b***h.”

This is certainly not a surprise.

And here is this from ABC News’ website:

At a town hall at Georgetown University, (U.S. House Speaker Paul) Ryan was questioned by one young Republican who said he’s been “very dismayed by this year’s election so far.” 

“Why is that?” Ryan asked. 

The Georgetown student said young Republicans “find it very difficult” to support either of the top two candidates for his party’s nomination, New York businessman Donald Trump and Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas. 

“Unfortunately, this is not the first time I’ve had this question,” Ryan remarked.

I am kind of thinking that Carly Fiorina is probably the only person that would accept to be Cruz’s running mate.   A whole lot of GOP leaders don’t like the guy.

This is what Sen. John Cornyn said about Cruz: “Clearly, he didn’t come here to remain in the Senate. He came here to run for president. And I think that perhaps explains the difference in tactics.”

So if Cruz loses in Indiana next week, will he come back to Texas and start being a senator? He hasn’t yet! I have felt since 2013 that we have only had one U.S. Senator. Haven’t you?

The White Sox at 16-6 and Cubbies at 15-5, have the best records in MLB today. Have the two ever met in the World Serious?

At the Donald Trump rally in Indiana yesterday, Bob Knight said this: “They said Harry Truman wasn’t presidential. And damn, he was one of 3 best presidents in history. And Trump will be one of those.”

Three best? Let’s see, Washington, Lincoln, and FDR.   Ok, Truman did preside over the end of WWII, made the decision to use the bomb, and led the effort to help put the planet back together after the war, but three best?

I have been saying this. Check this tweet:

Fox News ‏@FoxNews 6m6 minutes ago

.@edhenry: Democratic insiders “are not so sure [Trump]’ll be as easy to beat as the supporters of the Clinton team believe.” #OReillyFactor

Uber is threatening to leave H-Town. A lot of folks use those guys. I saw a bunch of them drop off folks at The Yard on Opening Day. If they want to leave a good thing in H-Town, then adios baby. Let them go.

In the 1906 World Serious of course, the White Sox beat the Cubbies in six.

News Flash!  We won last night.


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It is Trump

Yesterday, a Sen. Ted Cruz spokesperson was on CNN saying Donald Trump, with the exception of his home state of New York, was not getting a majority of the vote and so he should not be the GOP nominee. Last night Trump racked up 58%, 61%, 54%, 57%, and 64%. Meanwhile, Cruz got 12%, 16%, 19%, 22%, and 10%. Game over.

The last thing I want to do is tell the national GOP how to run their business but here goes. It would probably be a good idea for the major GOP players to tell Cruz and Gov. John Kasich to shut it down.

Trump is kicking serious arse and attempts within the GOP to deny him the nomination at this point reeks of invalidating the first three months of the GOP presidential primary schedule. I hate to say this, but he’s earned the nomination and last night’s sweep confirms this.

Cruz is a smart fella but he is delusional if he thinks he’s the best candidate to go against Secretary Hillary Clinton. Based on what? He’s not winning! He came in last in four out of five contests last night. He’s way behind in delegates.

I will say it again. Trump came in and started winning because his message resonated with voters in a toxic environment that was allowed to fester under the watch of the GOP establishment. So now he is their guy and they need to deal with it and make the best of it.

The ‘Stros only have three triples. Who has them?

Meanwhile, I guess the question for Dems is when is Sen. Bernie Sanders getting out? It is time.

I went to Target yesterday and nobody was freaking out.

Jason Castro has two triples and George Springer has the other of course.

You know it is bad when our backup catcher had to pitch last night. It is looking bad.

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In this case, I am talking about a wall that is keeping the GOP out of the Latino community. This does not surprise me one bit. I have been talking about this for a while. The GOP has certainly worked for this.

Here is part of a Lomi Kriel piece in today’s front page of the Chron:

A majority of Harris County residents lean Democratic for the first time ever, propelled by plummeting support for Republicans among Latinos, according to a survey released Monday by Rice University’s Kinder Institute for Urban Research.

The findings, in the midst of a particularly divisive presidential campaign, could signal an important shift in the county, which narrowly went to President Barack Obama in 2012 by only 970 votes. It might also portend that the long-sleeping giant of Latino voters is, finally, perhaps, being roused from slumber in an election that has featured decidedly anti-Latino and anti-immigrant rhetoric, particularly from billionaire Republican contender Donald Trump.

According to the survey, which was conducted between January and March, 52 percent of Harris County residents said they identified more with the Democratic Party compared to 46 percent in 2012. Only 30 percent of residents leaned Republican this spring, about the same as in 2012, meaning that it is the share of undecided and new potential voters whom have swung largely Democratic.


But among Latinos there has been a sea change.

From about 2000 to 2008, about 40 percent of the county’s Hispanic residents identified as Democratic compared to fewer than 30 percent who felt Republican, Klineberg said. That began to change starting around 2009 when their support for Democrats increased to nearly 50 percent and the share of those leaning Republican dropped to 25 percent.

The gap began to widen around the 2012 presidential election. This spring, Harris County’s Hispanic residents registered the lowest amount of support ever for Republicans — only 18 percent — compared to 68 percent of Latinos who said they lean Democrat.

“It’s a powerful message to the Republican party, reach out to these Latino voters, don’t push them away,” Klineberg said. “And for the Democrats, get out the vote.”

Like I’ve said, this has been building – pardon the pun. When GOPers talk about self-deportations, no to DACA and DAPA, throw in rapists and murderers, and building the wall, you know what happens. Well, all that has been used to build a wall around the Latino community to keep out the GOP because Latinos feel GOP hostility.

Here us the entire article: http://www.houstonchronicle.com/news/houston-texas/article/Rice-survey-A-majority-of-Harris-County-7330219.php?t=97c138f66f438d9cbb&cmpid=twitter-premium.

Of course, this means absolutely nothing on Election Day unless the Latino Dem leadership and the local Dem Party gets serious about a Latino voter engagement effort and there is no evidence at this point that there will be.

Baseball can at times be perplexing. The ‘Stros are 6-14. Remember Chris Carter? Last season he batted .199 and we got rid of him. You know what he is batting today with the Brewers?

This story in the Houston Press cracked me up. An HISD Trustee called out some middle school students on the school name changing issue and the parents of the kids fought back and now the HISD Trustee is hiding behind an LA PR agency. Here is how the story ends:

We could be wrong, but we believe this is the first time a Houston ISD trustee has been represented by a Los Angeles talent agency to help sort out a controversy involving a Houston middle school. Just when you think there’s nothing new under the sun, life just keeps on surprising.

You need to go check out the story here: http://www.houstonpress.com/news/lanier-parents-want-jolanda-jones-to-apologize-to-middle-school-students-8352681.

Good for the parents. Oh, well!

This past Saturday, Dante and I boarded the light rail North Line at Moody Park to head to The Yard. We knew a lot of folks would be heading to the game for a 3 pm start with the Red Sox and parking would probably be a problem unless you wanted to walk about 8 to 10 blocks or shell out $60 bucks or so. You make a transfer Downtown and you get dropped off two short blocks from The Yard. It ended up costing us $5.

There were a number of folks that took this option. I would recommend it to folks if it made sense. I hope that in the future when a huge crowd is expected at The Yard, Metro, the ‘Stros, and Downtown folks use social media to promote this option. Same thing for those day games during the work week when a lot of the parking spaces are being used.

Chris Carter of course is batting .295, yes .295 and has 5 dingers and 15 RBIs.

How in the heck do we win the first three AL Player of the Week awards and have one of the lousiest record in MLB? I really don’t know if we will pull out of our funk. This is pitiful if you ask me.

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Not Impressed

Pardon me for not being impressed this morning.

Maybe it has something to do with last night’s game at The Yard that lasted past midnight. It went 12 innings and Jose Altuve kind of looked bad in a nationally televised game. He made two errors. One was a bonehead throwing error and the other was mental – he forgot to put his foot on second base on a force out.

The hot shot reliever that we traded for in the off season was roughed up again. We are not a good team right now.

I will say that Colby Rasmus is having a good April. I am not impressed with the team’s effort though. Like I said, we are not a good team today.

Who leads MLB in stolen bases?

Commentary is not impressed with the tag team that was announced last night. I am talking about Sen. Cruz and Gov. Kasich pulling a tag team on Donald Trump. What is that all about? Do the voters actually pay attention to the tactic game? I kind of don’t think so.

Most talking heads are saying this is a desperate move. Not me. It is more like a stupid move.

Commentary said this last week on flooding:

Commentary hates to say this, but the 100-year flood event is now the new norm. Get used to it or move.

This was a headline of a front page story in yesterday’s Chron on local flooding:

Is this the new normal?

Here is the entire story: http://www.houstonchronicle.com/houston/article/After-storms-turn-Space-City-into-Flood-City-7305830.php.

Like someone said over the weekend – move over H-Town, Space City, Clutch City, and the Bayou City, and make room for Flood City.

Big Papi is retiring after the season. On Friday, the ‘Stros presented him with a black cowboy hat. I wasn’t impressed.

A couple of years ago we gave Derek Jeter golf clubs. I wasn’t impressed with that either.

A-Rod is retiring next season. When he visits The Yard next season, how about giving him a gold plated specimen jar?

Jose Alltuve leads MLB with nine stolen bases of course.

If we don’t start winning, finding street parking will be a lot easier.


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I didn’t think we would be 5-11 when the Red Sox came into town but we are. The Red Sox are 7-8. What was our record against the Sox last season?

On Monday, when things were starting to flood in these parts, Bill King tweeted this:

Bill King ‏@BillKingForHou Apr 18

Funny how we keep having these 500-year floods every 5 years! Not to worry though, Rebuild Houston has taken care of our flooding problems.

Bill then tweeted this on Wednesday:

Bill King ‏@BillKingForHou Apr 20

Lisa Gray nails it in her column on flooding. http://www.houstonchronicle.com/ …/Don-t-blame-Mother-Nature

Of course, everybody has had a take on why we are flooding.

Then the Mayor tweeted this yesterday:

Sylvester Turner

✔ ‎@SylvesterTurner

The campaign is over and the total focus should be on meeting the needs of all Houstonians in their moment of crisis.

Then this tweet came out from Channel 13 yesterday:

Houston News ‏@abc13houston 9m9 minutes ago

Houston Mayor Turner takes on Bill King flood critique in Twitter fight – http://abc13.co/1WHX2Ow  #abc13


Then Channel 13 also said this on their website:

Following a scathing critique of his handling of the historic Houston flooding by a former mayoral opponent, Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner responded today without naming names.

I haven’t talked to Bill. I saw his tweet on Monday and I just thought that Bill was reminding folks that he didn’t think much of Rebuild Houston. Heck, he said it all last year. Bill also put the same thing on his facebook. I hardly think it was “scathing” criticism of the Mayor’s work this past week.

On Bill’s tweet on the Gray Matters column, there have been a few other columns and Op-Eds on flooding this week and to my knowledge, none have been critical of the Mayor work this week.

Now some folks on Bill’s facebook questioned the timing of his post. I guess they have the right to question the timing.  Just like folks have the right to question columns and Op-Eds by others this week.

I don’t have a problem with the timing of Bill’s tweet and post and the columns because we all know what happens.   Today a lot of folks are talking about Prince and have already forgotten the floods. We have short attention spans – got it?

Back to Channel 13. Unless I missed something, I don’t think Bill said anything about how the Mayor his handling his job this week. Again, unless I missed something.

How about this tweet from yesterday:

David Barron ‏@dfbarron 5m5 minutes ago

#Astros‘ ESPN Sunday night game vs. Boston will be their first, other than 2013 AL opener vs. #Rangers, since 9-23-07 vs. #Cardinals.

The ‘Stros of course were 4-2 against the Red Sox last season.

I pretty much expect a great weekend of baseball at The Yard. The roof should be open. We should have great crowds. Big Papi will get some well-deserved cheers. A 3 pm start tomorrow. Sunday night baseball! What more could you ask for?

How about some Ws?


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San Jacinto Day

If you have lived in the H-Town area for a while, I hope you have taken the time to visit the San Jacinto Battleground and just kind of imagine what happened there 180 years ago today. Commentary has said before that I grew up just across the river from the battleground. Back then our school district had the elementary schools named after the Texas Revolution heroes like Davy Crockett, James Bowie, William Barrett Travis, Stephen F. Austin, Sam Houston, Lorenzo DeZavala, and others. So I kind of knew we were growing up by a special place in Texas history.

We are 5-10. What was our record last season at the end of April?

In the last couple of days there have been a few articles and Op-Eds about the cause of flooding here in the H-Town area. There is one today in the Houston Press that blames the flooding in Meyerland on development in Fort Bend County. The Mayor said he would be appointing a flood czar. That sounds good but here is the problem. This isn’t just a Houston issue. It is a regional issue and I don’t think the region’s leadership collectively has the political will to start working on tough measures to minimize flooding. What good does it do to come up with a Houston plan if adjoining communities and unincorporated areas don’t buy in?

What do you think is going to be built next to the Grand Parkway? Commentary hates to say this, but the 100-year flood event is now the new norm. Get used to it or move.

It is way too early to start talking about this. I am talking about a Star Telegram article today about how a Trump GOP ticket could help Dems in Texas.  Check this:

With Donald Trump now the prohibitive Republican frontrunner after winning this week’s New York primary, Democrats in Texas are more hopeful than ever that the billionaire’s emergence will help them in November.

Republicans say it’s just wishful thinking, but Democrats are hoping that Trump’s controversial comments will make some GOP voters stay home in protest and boost the number of Democrats going to the polls to vote against him if he becomes one of the presidential nominees. If that happens, it could help Democrats down the ballot.


“The image of Republican candidates in down-ballot races would be tarnished in the eyes of some regular Republican voters due to their indirect association with Trump as their party’s presidential standard bearer,” said Mark P. Jones, a political science professor at Rice University in Houston.

“Trump’s anti-Latino rhetoric would be utilized by Democrats to ramp up Latino turnout and to drive a wedge between Latinos and the Republican Party,” he said. “Since Latinos in Texas tend to lean Democratic, higher Latino turnout alone will benefit Democrats, let alone if formerly Republican leaning Latinos switch their support to Democratic candidates as a result of Trump’s candidacy.”

Here is the entire article: http://www.star-telegram.com/news/politics-government/election/article72916332.html.

I agree with Mark that there could be a higher Latino voter turnout. I have also said that Trump could also bring out folks that have not been voting before so it could all be a wash.

At end of April of last year, we were 15-7 of course.

What can you say about the 5-10 ‘Stros? How about where is the clutch hitting?

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