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Archive for October, 2017

Not Shocking

“Shocking” is the word that kept coming up yesterday after the Las Vegas massacre. Come on! It is not. It is just a different venue. A college campus. An elementary school. A cafeteria. A post office. A movie theater. A country western music concert. It is just a different venue.

And then one of many dumbarse quotes yesterday from the NRA types:

Fox News‏Verified account @FoxNews 13m13 minutes ago

@RichLowry: “The problem with the gun control advocates… they offer ideas that would have nothing to do with preventing the tragedy.”

This fella is one dumbarse for sure.

That’s about the only thing we haven’t tried – limiting access to guns.  Stricter guns laws. Gun control of some type on a federal level.  The status quo isn’t working.

In my mind, the blame is clearly on the NRA and their supporters. Sorry, they have had it their way for a while now and look at the results – body counts and carnage.

It is just a matter of time before the next mass shooting. Just a matter of time. Moments of silence and sending our thoughts and prayers isn’t cutting it.

Here is from today’s Chron E-Board:

The most influential supporters of our ridiculous gun laws are Smith & Wesson, Remington, Colt, and all the gun manufacturers who are constantly looking for new profits. And, of course, the National Rifle Association. Their latest gambit is to legalize silencers, gun attachments that have no use in sport shooting, personal protection or game hunting. A silencer’s only purpose is to keep a weapon’s use surreptitious.

Don’t argue with me, please.

That’s all I have to say.

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Blinked

Wake up. Look at your phone gizmo. Another mass shooting in the USA while sleeping. What else is news?

Take a bow, Chron E-Board!

Commentary is talking about this:

ABBOTT TO HOUSTON: DROP DEAD

He came down here as fast as he could Friday and handed the H-Town Mayor a check for $50 mil.

Gov. Abbott blinked. He chickened out. Felt the heat. Felt the pressure. Heard from sensible local GOPers. Changed his mind. Didn’t want to be the poster boy for jerks.

Let me thank everyone out there for calling him out!

And they probably stuck this on his must read list from Friday’s Commentary:

Talk about getting it handed to us on a silver platter. This is just what Harris County Dems can use going into the 2018 countywide elections. All parts of Harris County took a hit from Harvey and look how GOP Gov. Greg Abbott responded.   GOP Harris County Commissioner Steve Radack came out in support of tapping the so-called Rainy Day Fund for local relief. Have not heard from Hunker Down. Sen. Ted Cruz?

We’re going to be feeling the pain from Harvey for a while. Commentary thinks it is a legitimate issue that can used by local Dems heading into the 2018 local elections. What is $50 million out of close to $10 bil.   This was the mother of all storms and Gov. Abbott turned his back on us when we needed it the most. Never forget. Beat the drum.

Heck, he didn’t want to be blamed for next year’s losses here locally.

Still have to give the E-Board a ton of credit. Nice job.

Then this tweet:

Caroline‏@CleanRancor

Sep 29Caroline Retweeted Chronicle Opinion

Thanks @HoustonChron for shaming Abbott into doing the right thing for Houston

Since the 1970s, Commentary has been involved in a number of redistricting and voting rights fights here in the H-Town and Harris County area. I have got a little bit of experience, not really, a ton of experience on these issues. I have dealt with mayors, city councils, county officials, state legislators, school board trustees, you name it. I have seen it all. Until Friday. Here is this from this weekend’s Chron:

Following up on a promise to bring the city together, Pasadena Mayor Jeff Wagner asked City Council on Friday to make a $1 million payment to settle a contentious voting rights lawsuit. The protracted federal court battle elicited national portrayals of the blue collar Houston suburb as fertile ground for suppressing the political clout of its growing Latino population.

The proposed settlement with Latino residents who sued the city in 2014 over a new City Council district election system calls for the city to pay $900,000 for the plaintiffs’ legal fees and $197,341 for court costs. The item is set to be heard Tuesday at the City Council meeting. “While I strongly believe that the city did not violate the Voting Rights Act or adopt a discriminatory election system,” Wagner said in a statement, “I think it’s in the best interest of the city to get this suit behind us.”

The city, under his leadership, has taken other steps toward equity, including the mayor’s appointment of a Latino police chief and a recent plan to resume bus service that’s a lifeline for low-income residents.

Here is the entire read: http://www.houstonchronicle.com/news/houston-texas/houston/article/Pasadena-mayor-pitches-1M-settlement-to-end-12242251.php.

A lot of elected officials Latinos go up against in these types of fights, when they get slammed in a lower court, they want to take it all the way to the max. Their lawyers tell them they can win on appeal so the legal team can continue to invoice huge fees at the public’s expense. Heck, my Dad’s single member district case, they fought it all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court.

They hope to wear you down and exhaust your money because they have taxpayer money to play with. They want to keep up the fight just because they can. You get the picture.

It is a rare in these parts to see what the Mayor of Pasadena did. Former Mayor Johnny Isbell was ready to go to the Supreme Court. Not Mayor Wagner. No mas! What’s the point?

When he asked James Rodriguez to be his Chief of Staff, I knew right then that this guy was going to do things differently. It is definitely not business as usual in Pasadena and you can thank Mayor Wagner for that. I am a fan.

Speaking of doing things differently, the Chron E-Board on Saturday put what type of folks they are looking for to endorse in the HISD Trustee races. Here is how their take starts:

Houston Independent School District has been stuck under a storm cloud of its own making. Last year’s board meetings were marked by dissension, grandstanding and disrespect. In 2017, the district faced a $106 million shortfall in a $2 billion budget. If about a dozen HISD schools don’t improve, the state will close campuses or take over the district’s operations.

Now Hurricane Harvey, a real storm, has blown through and the board of trustees of HISD are tasked with maintaining local control of the district, established almost a century ago, while also rebuilding storm-damaged schools.

This latest crisis comes at a time when six seats are open on the nine-member board. Nineteen candidates are running in November to fill these seats. The future of the district, and ultimately its 215,000 students, rides on our community’s ability to pay close attention to these races and elect qualified people to serve.

If you want to elect a good judge, you look at legal credentials, years of practice, academic preparation and personal disposition.

In contrast, identifying a good board member may require reading between the lines of a candidate’s resume. School board members don’t necessarily need a background in education. Their job is simply to be the bridge between the community and the local school system. This means somebody who knows their community well and can represent its values and priorities in clear terms.

Even though experience in education isn’t a necessity, it can be a plus, Jasmine Jenkins, executive director of Houstonians for Great Public Schools, told the editorial board. The problem is when members fail to understand the difference between governing and managing.

Here is the entire E-Board take: http://www.houstonchronicle.com/opinion/editorials/article/Six-seats-are-open-on-the-nine-member-Houston-ISD-12242302.php.

Very interesting.

From the E-Board’s Saturday’s Thumbs Up/Down takes, here are some:

(Thumbs twiddled) It was nice of Gov. Abbott to fly over to Houston Friday for a meeting and press conference with Mayor Sylvester Turner. There was backslapping and handshaking despite the governor’s patronizing remarks toward the mayor earlier in the week. Instead of saying “I’m sorry,” Abbott did the equivalent of buying your wife diamond earrings. He pulled out a $50 million check (from a state emergency fund) and presented it to Houstonians. That wasn’t so hard, was it? The mayor reciprocated by calling off a planned one-year tax increase that we still believe could go to good use. We need tax dollars, and we need them any way we can get them. Both men deferred to the Feds for the Big Three flood prevention projects that must be appropriated and funded: a third reservoir, bayou infrastructure work and coastal protection. Our disappointment is that Abbott is acting slowly and without vision. He should call a special session of the Legislature to establish a regional flood control authority so everyone is truly working together; he should figure out a way to accelerate the building of safety projects along our watersheds and, among other things, he must lead an effort to bring ordinance-making powers to unincorporated areas. Our thumbs are twitching to write something nice about him.

(Thumbs up) Show us an elected official and we’ll show you a person who pulls punches and plays it politically correct. Not Harris County Commissioner Steve Radack. He visited the editorial board this week about flooding and pointed a finger of blame at many of his fellow conservatives who have sat on their hands when they had an opportunity to help. Congressman John Culberson, Radack says, is more concerned about space aliens than flood control. Gov. Greg Abbott is making a “terrible mistake” by not calling a special session. And his fellow county commissioners should approve a property tax increase for flood projects.

(Thumbs up) Karma happens. The week after Harvey, the Astros were to host a three-game series with the Rangers. Our hurricane-ravaged guys asked Texas to make a trade: Let us play the August games in Arlington and move the September games to Houston. The heartless, we-don’t-have-your-back Rangers said “no” and the first series was relocated to Florida. The second three-game series ended Wednesday with the soon-to-be-World-Champion Astros winning by a combined score of 37-7. We still think the Rangers shouldn’t be allowed to wear a Texas flag on their uniforms.

(Thumbs up) The city of Pasadena blatantly discriminated against Latinos, a federal judge ruled in a January voting rights case. Instead of accepting the verdict, the city decided to drag out the pain with an appeal. That was until Friday when new mayor Jeff Wagner announced he’ll seek a $1 million settlement. All of this would have been unnecessary if Pasadena had not adopted a system designed to shut out Hispanic voices. Let this be a lesson to the state and Harris County which keep getting smacked around with their own unending lawsuits that crack down on the less fortunate.

The team sent this over the weekend:

Cheer on the Astros when they are on the road at the Official Astros Postseason Watch Parties at Minute Maid Park! Each away game will be shown on the videoboard in the stadium and at the Street Festival on Crawford Street. Fans must claim a FREE admissions voucher in order to attend the event.

WHERE: Minute Maid Park – Crawford Street

WHEN: Sunday, October 8th and every other potential Astros Postseason away game

TIME: TBD

WHAT:

  • Live music
  • Food trucks
  • Face painters
  • Caricature artists
  • Appearances from Shooting Stars, Shuttle Crew and Orbit
  • Inflatables
  • Photo booth
  • Bar games
  • Access to team store

*Activities are subject to change

PARKING: Parking will be available in Astros Owned Lots A, B, and C

We play the 3 pm game this Thursday against the Red Sox. I was hoping to get the 7 pm prime time slot. I could get petty and hope the Twins beat the Yankees tomorrow so FS1 can have the Cleveland and Twins in prime time instead of us and the Red Sox but I won’t. I’m thinking that our 101-61 season record will probably get us a few prime time slots during our playoff run.

 

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