Archive for April 6th, 2017

Feel Better?

The ‘Stros are 3 zip. We haven’t started out 3 zip since 2001. Who did we beat the first three games of 2001?

Steve Bannon is off of the National Security Council and Rick Perry is now on the National Security Council. Going from DWTS to the National Security Council doesn’t seem right. Do you feel better though?

Just what did this clown expect when he tried to play hide-and-seek with intel. He became a dumbarse on national TV. He gets no sympathy from me. Here is from AP this morning:

WASHINGTON — The chairman of the House intelligence committee says he will temporarily step aside from the panel’s probe into Russian meddling in the election.

In a statement on Thursday, Republican congressman Devin Nunes of California says that several left-wing activist groups have filed accusations against him with the office of congressional ethics.

Nunes says the charges are false and politically motivated. But he says it’s in the best interest of the committee to have GOP Congressman Mike Conaway of Texas temporarily take charge of the committee’s investigation.

He says he will continue fulfilling other duties with the committee and wants to talk to the ethics committee as soon as possible to defend himself.

During a news conference on Thursday, House Speaker Paul Ryan says an ethics complaint filed against Nunes by government watchdog groups would be a “distraction” and that Nunes should no longer lead the probe. However, Ryan says he is confident that Conaway “will oversee a professional investigation into Russia’s actions and follow the facts wherever they lead.”

Nunes has come under intense criticism for meeting secretly with White House officials to view intelligence regarding associates of President Trump.

He deserves this for sure.

The Dean is among the leaders of bail-bond reform here in Harris County. Bail-bondsmen are opposed for obvious reasons. Here is from the Chron E-Board today:

But what’s bad for taxpayers is good for bail-bondsmen, who claim they’ll go out of business if low-risk offenders can go back to their jobs and families without having to put up cash. Any business model that relies on an unjust system deserves to go bust. After all, they’re largely to blame for the slow pace of change in Harris County. Any Republican judge who advocates reform has to worry about a bail-bond-backed primary challenger who will accuse him of being soft on crime.

Here is the entire E-Board take: http://www.houstonchronicle.com/opinion/editorials/article/Simply-indefensible-11053556.php.

Don’t ask me about a shameless take I saw the other day in defense of the current system. Absolutely shameless.

Really, DC Dems?   Have you been dropping the ball? Why aren’t you paying attention? Here is from HuffPo:

Shortly after the presidential election, Casey Bailey, one of the dwindling number of Democrats in Montana, organized a Facebook group for his neighbors to vent about national politics. The driving question on everybody’s mind for those first weeks and months ― What can we do? ― had no obvious answer. By February, one started to emerge: President Donald Trump had nominated Rep. Ryan Zinke of Montana to be secretary of the Interior Department, and as Zinke rode his horse to his first day on the job, his old job became vacant.

To the surprise of Bailey and much of the rest of Montana, a familiar name emerged in the race to fill the job. Rob Quist, the legendary banjo-strumming folk singer with a populist streak and a penchant for public service, was running as a Democrat for Zinke’s seat.

Democrats chose their nominee at a state convention, where, as the first ballot turned to the second and then third, it gradually became apparent that Quist was deadly serious. He had barnstormed the state, urging locals to set up county parties, get active and come vote for him at the state convention. Bailey, whose journey into political activism had begun with a simple Facebook page, found himself a delegate at the gathering. The 37-year-old organic grain farmer cast his vote for Quist, who won on the fourth ballot.

In a state with 56 counties, at least six saw new Democratic central committees pop up in response to Quist’s statewide tour, said Nancy Keenan, the executive director of the Montana Democratic Party.

When Quist arrived last month in Fort Benton, Chouteau County’s biggest town, nearly 70 people gathered to hear him speak.

“We’re a very Republican, red, conservative area,” Bailey told The Huffington Post by phone in a recent interview, describing the first rally they held with Quist in March. “I was like, ‘Holy cow!’”

Now, his rallies regularly draw hundreds. It’s precisely the kind of organizing Democrats say is essential to rebuilding the party and taking back power. But back in Washington, Democrats are conflicted on how or whether to get involved in the race. Some aren’t following it at all.

Rep. Jim Clyburn (D-S.C.) was the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee’s national mobilization chair in 2016. “Montana special election?” Clyburn said, when HuffPost asked if the DCCC planned to get more involved in the race. Somebody nearby told him the race was to replace Zinke. “Oh, I didn’t know about that,” Clyburn said.

Montana voters will go to the polls on May 25 to choose between Quist and a Republican easily panned as a cartoon plutocrat fresh off a statewide election loss. The president’s approval rating is at 35 percent, and a special-election loss in Montana would be a crushing blow.  

Here is the entire read: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/rob-quist-a-montana-special-election-nobody-is-following-could-deal-a-huge-blow-to-trump_us_58e3fcc5e4b03a26a3670c30.

Get it together, please!

I remember when this album came out. I remember bringing it home and listening to it for hours and hours. If anyone claims that this is the best album of all time, they won’t get an argument from me. If anyone also claims that this is the best album cover of all time, they also won’t get an argument from me. Here is this from a fascinating read from the LA Times:

The most ambitious reissue yet of an individual album from the Beatles’ catalog is coming May 26 with an expanded and newly remixed edition of the Fab Four’s 1967 pop masterpiece, “Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band.”

Consistently ranked by critics and fans among the most influential rock albums of all time, “Sgt. Pepper” is being reissued in multiple formats and editions, including new stereo and surround-sound audio mixes along with nearly three dozen previously unreleased recordings from the same sessions.

“It’s crazy to think that 50 years later we are looking back on this project with such fondness and a little bit of amazement at how four guys, a great producer and his engineers could make such a lasting piece of art,” Paul McCartney writes in a new introduction for the anniversary edition of a project that started out as his baby.

In a 1970 interview with Rolling Stone, John Lennon said, “It was a peak. Paul and I were definitely working together.”

Ringo Starr, the quartet’s other surviving member, writes in his introductory remarks to the new edition that “‘Sgt. Pepper’ seemed to capture the mood of that year, and it also allowed a lot of other people to kick off from there and to really go for it.”

Indeed, the Doors’ drummer, John Densmore, told The Times recently, “We were working on our second album, ‘Strange Days’ [in 1967] and while we were working on it, we got an early copy of ‘Sgt. Pepper’ and we just died. That made us experiment more, inspired us to try the Moog synthesizer, made us generally be wild and just say ‘What the hell?’”

Purists still love to debate whether “Rubber Soul,” “Revolver” or “Abbey Road” are more consistently creative works than “Sgt. Pepper,” and McCartney has often said there are days he leans toward any of those four as his favorite of the band’s studio works during its relatively short but astonishingly fertile seven-year career as a recording unit.

But dozens of musicians, producers, record executives, music writers and others polled by Rolling Stone magazine in 2012 place “Sgt. Pepper” at the pinnacle of the publication’s list of the “500 Greatest Albums of All Time,” lauding it as “simply the best of everything the Beatles ever did as musicians, pioneers and pop stars, all in one place.”

Breaking from a long-standing tradition of avoiding fanfare over significant anniversaries since the group disbanded in 1970, McCartney, Starr, Lennon’s widow, Yoko Ono, and George Harrison’s widow, Olivia, this time gave approval for the grand-scale look back at “Sgt. Pepper.”

Giles Martin, the son of the Beatles’ original producer, George Martin, has collaborated again with veteran Abbey Road studios engineer Sam Okell on the new stereo and 5.1 multi-channel mixes of the album.

Perhaps the most tantalizing element for Beatles aficionados is the word that Giles Martin and Okell created the new stereo mix with direct transfers from the original four-track tapes, rather than the two-track master that has been the basis of all previous stereo versions of “Sgt. Pepper” for the last 50 years.

Why so much attention to a new stereo version of an album that has been available in stereo for five decades?

In 1967, George Martin and the Beatles spent the vast majority of their time focused on the monaural mix, which was still the dominant playback format in England at that time. The group members by and large were not even present during mixing of the stereo version of the album.

Hence the new anniversary edition is an attempt to create a mix closer to what the world might have heard if the Beatles and George Martin had cared about stereo at that point.

Among other facets of the new version, it restores the original playback speed of the ballad “She’s Leaving Home” rather than using the slowed-down version most listeners have heard on the existing stereo mix.


I am certainly looking forward to next month when it is released – again!

In 2001, the ‘Stros took the first three from the Brewers of course.

Hey, we’re 3 zip so let’s get to The Yard!

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