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I am thinking if Open Carry goes to the Governor’s desk, why not sign the bill at the Twin Peaks parking lot in Waco.

It is the culture that some folks promote here in Texas.

Here is what State Sen. Joan Huffman said yesterday about the Open Carry bill and the Waco Shootout:

“This bill does nothing to try to legislate against criminal behavior. We have plenty of laws to prevent the kind of incident that occurred at Twin Peaks. This bill does not have anything to do with what went on yesterday.”

How can she say that with a straight face when a contingent of law enforcement officials were at the scene when it happened?

She obviously will never get it. The Chron E-Board gets it. Here is part of what they said today:

Imagine how much worse the Waco mayhem could have been. It took place at a busy shopping plaza, less than 30 feet from a Mexican restaurant at lunch time. True, 19th-century Waco was known as “Six-Shooter Junction,” but 21-century shoppers at a nearby Cabela’s or Best Buy weren’t expecting to be party to a Wild West shoot-out when they left home for the relatively upscale Central Texas Marketplace.

A Wild-West Texas, though, seems to be the ideal for the legislative gunsters we’ve sent to Austin, whose actions will result in more guns in more places with fewer safeguards. They’re besotted with the notion that the Second Amendment confers an absolute immunity against any attempt to protect the general welfare.

They are mistaken. There are sensible limits on every one of our constitutional rights, including the Second.

We’re not saying that the elected officials who have made gun rights their mission condone what happened in Waco. We are saying that the indiscriminate possession of guns is a danger that law-abiding citizens shouldn’t have to tolerate. With all due respect to the Second Amendment, we would expect them to show a little common sense, not to mention a decent respect for the sanctity of human life. Maybe it’s too much to expect those qualities from criminal biker gangs, but most of us expect higher standards from our elected officials.

Here is the entire E-Board take: http://www.chron.com/opinion/editorials/article/Biker-brawl-6271489.php.

Hey, like I said, it is a culture that is promoted.

Name the three players in our starting lineup yesterday who are hitting below the Mendoza Line?

From the Oops Dept.

This was tweeted this past Sunday:

Adrian Garcia retweeted
Mustafa Tameez @MustafaTameez · 23h 23 hours ago
Rev. Bill Lawson – Adrian Garcia will make the best Mayor for Houston #HouNews #ag2015 #Fox26ForLife pic.twitter.com/1bC9a4xKx1

Then this was released yesterday:

Statement from Rev. William A. Lawson

“There has been a lot of discussion over the past 24 hours about where I stand in the mayor’s race. Upon further reflection, I wish to make the following statement.

“Today, I am endorsing Representative Sylvester Turner for mayor of the City of Houston.

“Sylvester has been excellent as a lawmaker representative of citizens at all levels. He has proven to be a man of passion for all people and a man of integrity. I believe that everyone in the City of Houston, including the lowly and the vulnerable, need a mayor who will care about them. That is where I have always stood.”

I am hearing that the back story on this is a doozy. It is about going overboard, jumping the gun, and making up stuff.

And then this was tweeted out yesterday:

AlanBernstein ‏@AlanBernstein 9m9 minutes ago
This picture from Sunday is probably worth much more than today’s 100 or so words. Thnx for the follow @grantmartin1 pic.twitter.com/k1N3jVY4R7

And then this:

Miya Shay @miyashay · 10h 10 hours ago
Yesterday, Rev. Lawson speaks at @AdrianGarciaHTX kickoff. Today, he endorses @SylvesterTurner for Mayor. #HouMayor tug-a-war! #abc13

And then the Parks Department released the following this morning:

We want to clarify what has transpired over the past 48 hours. There was no rally at Moody Park this past Sunday.

Not really!

Springer (.188), Gattis (.183), and Carter (.160) of course were in last night’s starting lineup. Just think how we would be doing if all three were just hitting at their career average – yikes!

WOW!

I sure hope Mayor Cisneros is right on this. Talk about Latino voter turnout in 2016. Here is a bit from yesterday’s SA Express News:

Henry Cisneros told a Spanish-language television network that Julian Castro is Hillary Clinton’s first and only option to run as her vice presidential running mate.

Cisneros told Univision’s Félix De Bedout that people within the Clinton campaign have told him that Castro, the Secretary of Housing and Urban Development and former San Antonio mayor, is “the first person on their list.”

Here is the entire article: http://www.mysanantonio.com/news/local/article/Cisneros-Hillary-Clinton-s-only-option-for-VP-6268491.php.

All I have to say about how much money the Clintons received for giving speeches, nobody put a gun to the heads of those that paid to hear them talk.

Commentary makes it a policy not to talk about folks and some of the personal stuff that should be kept private. Yesterday, the Chron told us way too much about a couple of local elected officials – wowsers!

Nice job, Waco!

The 25-13 ‘Stros have the second best record in MLB but this morning Bleacherreport.com has them at number 5 on their MLB Power Rankings. Name the four teams ahead of the ‘Stros?

In local Mayoral politics, the campaign kickoffs are over so now it is about winning over voters.

The new light rail lines will open this Saturday. This past weekend I ran across them making some test runs. I hope the folks that regularly drive Downtown show a little patience. Be careful out there.

All I can say is when there are only four team left in the NBA Playoffs, the Rockets games start at a normal 8 pm.

Detroit, San Luis, Dodgers, and KC all rank ahead of the ‘Stros of course in this morning’s Bleacherreport.com MLB Power Rankings.

Check these tweets from yesterday:

Alyson Footer ‏@alysonfooter 13m13 minutes ago
It’s May 17 and officially not early anymore. Astros aren’t going away.

Alyson Footer @alysonfooter • 4h 4 hours ago
“Not going away” doesn’t mean “win the division.” “Not going away” means the Astros will be, and are, contenders this year.

The crowds are getting bigger. This evening Lance McCullers, Jr. will make his MLB debut with the ‘Stros. We have a 5 ½ game lead. What else can you ask for?

Getting Ready

#GoRockets will be trending all weekend here in H-Town.

Come on! This fella’s dad was the president. His brother was the president. He was governor of one of the largest states in the country. He’s been around public policy discussions all of his life. Iraq has been one of the biggest issues over the last 25 years or so. And it takes him four days to figure out what he should be saying? I’m sorry! He’s not ready for the big show!

Channel 13 did a story yesterday on the new Sheriff and we learned that he’s changing the senior staff. He didn’t take any shots at his predecessor.

CEWDEM’s take of a couple of days ago got some feedback – mostly in support of CEWDEM’s take. That does not surprise me. He definitely got his point across.

Commentary is really looking forward to the first time all the mayoral candidates are on the same stage at a forum or debate and get down to discussing the issues and policies. I am really looking forward to hearing from the non-spinners afterwards. We will find out who belongs on the stage. Stay tuned!

Name the ‘Stro with the most RBIs this season?

Let’s see. I guess maybe the state’s image dodged a big one last night up in Austin – maybe. I know, I know – what image?

Somebody needs to tell me which Dems are having a good session.

I have said it before. Texas school finance is the mother of all public policy issues here in the Lone Star State. Some things never change.

I am thinking this is the big news in H-Town today:

Brian McTaggart ⚾️ retweeted
KPRC 2 Houston ‏@KPRC2 1h1 hour ago
.@McConaughey will be in #Houston to deliver the commencement address for @UHouston. http://bit.ly/1bUfdMJ #KPRC2

Hey, more power to the Coogs!

Jose Altuve leads the team with 21 RBIs of course – really!

Only 15,000 plus showed up at The Yard last night to see a pretty good win. I know. We were up against the Rockets.

We have a 4½ game lead and they are giving away 10,000 Keuchel gnomes tomorrow and Keuchel pitches tonight.

H-Town Mayoral Takes

CEWDEM, UH’s Dr. Richard Murray, and the Chron’s Rebecca Elliott all have something to say about the H-Town Mayoral contest. CEWDEM, like other Dem activists, is not too happy that the former Sheriff handed off the Sheriff’s Office to the GOP. And CEWDEM has got a pretty big list of folks that he can talk to. Here is what CEWDEM put out last night:

You would be amazed at the number of folks who have contacted me in agreement with all of this, just don’t want to speak out for fear of retribution. I personally will not stand by and not call someone out for party disloyalty. I have worked too long and too hard for people and policies that bring about a better life for All and I will not just sit by and allow someone to give up what we all worked for – and give it to the enemy – without running my chops – whether anyone likes it or not – and as aside, I personally think Adrian Garcia is a nice guy and have always considered him a friend, I am just so sorry he used such poor judgment on this matter and was talked into something by folks who do not have his best interest – and certainly not the Democratic Party’s best interest at stake.

Let’s be clear – Adrian Garcia was elected Sheriff because he was running against a crook and benefitted from the massive turnout of Barack Obama supporters in 2008. He was reelected in 2012 without much of an opponent plus over $200,000 in contributions from the Harris County Democratic Party along with a turnout brought about by President Obama. This is a bad move, it makes it harder for a D to recapture, but Loyalists will turn out and they will vote for a qualified D nominee.

So the point of all this is to say that Adrian Garcia benefitted from several things, not the least of which was being a Democrat, but he did not carry others on the ticket into office – either time. And this is his repayment for the time, effort and money of Loyal Democrats. Think about that. Self above all.

I wonder how many Dem activists disagree with CEWDEM.

Dr. Murray was on Houston Matters a few days ago and had this to say about Bill King:

“he’s viewed as well-informed, attractive candidate personally…”

And:

“Bill is an articulate person. He has studied city issues.”

Dr. Murray’s take is fresh and unbiased. It is not spin. He’s not supporting anyone.

Take the time to listen to his take here: http://www.houstonmatters.org/show/2015/05/12/houston-mayors-race-tuesdays-show-may-12-2015.

The Jays are in town for four. A player for the Jays won the AL MVP Award in 1987 – the only time the Jays have ever won it. Name the player?

Hey, you roll out the first TV ad and plunk down the dough, you get a bit of coverage. Here is Rebecca Elliott on Bill King’s TV ad and buy:

In this year’s race to become Houston’s next mayor, the television wars have started early.

Businessman and former Kemah mayor Bill King brought his campaign to television in earnest on Monday, when his 30-second introductory spot hit cable networks.

Ads like King’s, which Comcast records show will run for three weeks and cost about $84,000, typically do not run until mid-summer in Houston, when the field of credible contenders has winnowed and November’s election is on the horizon. Voters’ memories are short, the logic goes, and an early launch onto the airwaves could deplete a candidate’s campaign coffers.

In a crowded field of some half dozen candidates seeking to replace term-limited Mayor Annise Parker, a candidate like King, who has never held elected office in Houston, stands to benefit from the boost in name recognition a television debut may provide, political analysts said.

It is not that the television time necessarily will translate into votes, said Rice University political analyst Mark Jones, but it could help King establish himself as a viable contender and gain favor among Houston’s center and center-right political elites. That bloc is seen as crucial for King and City Councilman Stephen Costello, the two center-right candidates in the race, as they vie for fundraising dollars and a spot in the runoff. The top two vote-getters in November’s nonpartisan election will move on to this face-off, with state Rep. Sylvester Turner and former Harris County Sheriff Adrian Garcia considered the early frontrunners.

“If both of them remain strong, viable candidates, they may doom each other to a third or fourth place finish,” Jones said of Costello and King.

According to Comcast, King’s ad will air in Clear Lake, Kingwood, Westchase, Memorial and North Houston, most of which are reliably Republican. These zones are set by the cable company and do not necessarily follow the city boundaries.

Although unusual, King’s move to television is not unprecedented. In 2003, Bill White – then a relatively unknown lawyer and businessman – used early TV ads to build his name recognition and ultimately catapulted himself into the mayor’s office with record-setting fundraising.

“It’s the same logic,” Jones said.

And just as White invested in his own campaign, King intends to put half a million dollars into his bid, spokesman Jim McGrath said.

According to Federal Communications Commission records, none of the more than half dozen mayoral candidates have purchased air time on Houston’s major broadcast networks this year, though 2013 mayoral runner-up Ben Hall’s campaign said he ran about $1,000 worth of ads on Comcast in March. Most of the other campaigns said they expect to stay off television until later in the cycle.

Political analyst Nancy Sims, who is not affiliated with any of the candidates, said she expects television to be key in the race.

“This, in my opinion, is going to separate the wheat from the chaff,” she said. “You’ll never reach enough of the eligible voters to make a difference without television ads.”

For that, the candidates will need ample financial resources, which they are scrambling to amass ahead of the close of the reporting period on June 30.

Other mayoral candidates include former congressman and city councilmember Chris Bell and businessman Marty McVey.

The Mayor rolled out her proposed budget the other day. I wonder if there is an item in the budget to study H-Town’s productivity the morning after a 9:30 pm start of a Rockets playoff game.

A number of GOPers now think it wasn’t a good idea to invade Iraq. Not Jeb Bush. I am thinking he probably misremembered why we invaded Iraq.

The Chron has a story today on an intersection in Midtown whose crosswalks were painted. It is right next to my gym and you can see it from the sit-up benches. The Midtown Management District footed the bill at $20,000.

The 1987 AL MVP Award winner was George Bell of course from the Jays. That season he hit 47 dingers and had 134 RBIs to go with his .308 batting average.

Ken Rosenthal agrees with Commentary on Carlos Correa.

A SpringerDinger help get us a 4-3 much needed win last night over the Giants. We are 9-9 at home and still have a four game lead.

Well we know how CEWDEM feels about certain stuff. Here is what he email blasted yesterday:

We Got Ourselves a New REPUBLICAN SHERIFF in HARRIS County Thanks to ADRIAN GARCIA!

And:

The NEW High Sheriff of Harris County, Ron Hickman, Republican compliments of Adrian Garcia

According to Hunker Down and the folks that run Harris County, the new Sheriff has “gravitas.” Does that mean that Dems have to put forward a candidate who has “gravitas?”

Does that mean that the Sheriff who just resigned lacked “gravitas?”

I am thinking that the new Sheriff might borrow from Mike Huckabee and use as his campaign slogan “guns, grits, and gravitas.”

According to Channel 13, it looks like the folks that have that $1,000 a day consulting contract over at the Sheriff’s Office are going to lose their gig. That’s politics!

How many times did Yogi Berra make the AL All Star Team?

Well, it didn’t take long for Pulitzer Prize winning columnist Lisa Falkenberg to call out someone on the grand jury reform screw-up up in Austin. House Bill author Harold Dutton got the Falkenberg treatment today. Here are bits:

Instead of taking the baton from (State Sen. John) Whitmire as soon as the Senate bill hit the House, Dutton started fresh with his own bill. He wouldn’t explain to me why, except to say “I like my version better.” I have to wonder if he also liked the look of his own name and bill number.

Dutton’s version included a giant concession to a few judges he said voiced “concerns.” Although the bill would have made random grand jury selection the default in Texas, it would have allowed judges to use pick-a-pal if they could express a good reason. That’s very close to the current system we’re trying to get rid of.

In a phone interview Tuesday, Dutton seemed unaware of the smaller concession Whitmire had made that addressed the same concerns from judges. He also didn’t take kindly to Whitmire’s suggestion of finding other surrogate sponsors in the House.

“He’s free to do whatever the hell he likes,” Dutton said. “This is the House over here. He runs the Senate, maybe, but he doesn’t run the House.”

Whitmire, meanwhile, has vowed to press on and to enlist other veteran Houston House members, such as Reps. Senfronia Thompson and Sylvester Turner, to help.

And Dutton does need help. It was obvious that he hadn’t done his homework on the legislation. He hadn’t worked the floor. He hadn’t educated members on his bill. Even some members who tried to aid him in the debate struggled with basic facts of the bill and missed crucial talking points.

“He had not worked the delegation. He did not recruit people to help. It was horrible,” Whitmire says.

Here is the entire column: http://www.houstonchronicle.com/news/houston-texas/houston/article/Lawmakers-it-s-about-grand-jury-reform-not-you-6259544.php?cmpid=btfpm.

And here is how Rep. Dutton responded: “Whitmire’s got his panties in a wad.”

Somebody needs to ask The Dean: “Boxers, briefs, or panties?”

I think it is safe to assume that Jeb Bush is not ready for prime time. Same goes for Ana Navarro.

One thing about Boston, they stick with their guy and I have to admire that.

Yogi Berra was selected to 15 AL All Star Teams of course.

Yeah, I know. We got smacked by last year’s World Serious Champs last night. We need to be playing better.

The team needs go on ahead and bring up Carlos Correa because we are not getting it done at shortstop. The fans have been patient long enough so do the right thing, please!

Dollar Dogs tonight at The Yard!

Happy Birthday, Yogi!

Hall of Fame great and all-around great guy Yogi Berra is 90 today.

As he once said: “Thank you for making this day necessary.”

How many World Serious rings does Yogi have as a player?

Commentary has a signed photo of Yogi on my wall. Do you?

The Sheriff resignation now has us a front page story about who should run the county jail. If the Sheriff had decided to stay as Sheriff, we wouldn’t be having this discussion. Oh, well!

The Harris County Judge and Commissioners will be naming a replacement for sure soon. One thing is certain. The next Sheriff will be a GOPer. They could make history by naming a Latino GOPer, a female GOPer, an African American GOPer, or an Asian American GOPer. Stay tuned!

The grand jury reform legislation might be in trouble this session. How can that be? Didn’t it pass 31 zip in the senate? Check this tweet:

Vernon Loeb ‏@LoebVernon 4m4 minutes ago
Grand jury reform falters in Austin. This is how bills get killed @chroniclemike @brianmrosenthal http://www.houstonchronicle.com/news/article/Grand-jury-reform-suffers-setback-in-Austin-6256995.php?t=c0e19d30f4b2e7d3f0&cmpid=twitter-premium … via @HoustonChron

The bad news is that we get stuck with a lousy system. The good news is Pulitzer Prize winning columnist Lisa Falkenberg can now set her sights on those who derailed reform and provide us with some juicy columns.

Does she or doesn’t she. How much power is left in her gas tank? He’s talking about the Mayor. Check this from the Chron’s Mike Morris:

City Council has voted down or delayed several items put forward by Mayor Annise Parker in recent weeks, events that some City Hall observers interpret as a sign of the term-limited mayor being afflicted with lame-duck syndrome as the race to succeed her heats up.

Parker and her allies dismiss these suggestions, saying they see no trend in a series of tiffs stemming from unrelated proposals to tweak the makeup of two city-appointed boards, make it easier to work with public easements, or administer longstanding programs. Parker has even declared her intent to remain politically relevant by scheduling a fundraiser for May 17.

Here is the entire Morris piece behind the paywall: http://www.houstonchronicle.com/news/houston-texas/houston/article/Council-pushing-back-against-lame-duck-mayor-6256070.php.

I don’t know. She is still the Mayor and does set the agenda. We will see I guess. It depends on what else she wants to accomplish.

I am not going to say much about Tom Brady other than to say he still gets to keep his latest Super Bowl ring.

Yogi Berra of course has ten World Serious rings as a player.

“Slump? I ain’t in no slump…I just ain’t hitting.”

Our top prospect, Carlos Correa, was promoted to Triple A. He should have been promoted to The Yard.

We fell to sixth in the Bleacherreport.com MLB power rankings. We have to do better at The Yard.

Bill King’s Ad

Bill King is on TV. There is really not much else to say other than watch it. Here is a tweet from yesterday:

Katherine Driessen retweeted
Rebecca Elliott @rfelliott • 13h 13 hours ago
.@BillKingForHou moving to TV early with his first mayoral ad to run Monday morning http://www.chron.com/news/politics/houston/article/King-to-air-TV-ad-Monday-6254495.php … #hounews

Here is from a Chron story:

Houston mayoral candidate and former Chronicle columnist Bill King is hitting the TV airwaves early with a 30-second spot expected to show early Monday morning, according to spokesman Jim McGrath.

The advertisement, which McGrath said will air throughout the Houston market, introduces viewers to King and his “Back to Basics” campaign.

“I’ve spent my life building businesses, speaking out on our biggest issues, and working on Houston’s toughest challenges,” King says in the ad. “I’m ready to bring that experience to City Hall.”

McGrath declined to comment on the cost of the ad, which he said will likely run for at least two weeks.

“This is definitely an aggressive, early buy,” said University of Houston political scientist Brandon Rottinghaus, noting that mayoral TV ads usually go up mid-summer.

“There’s one worry that early money spent sometimes can have very little effect if people aren’t paying attention,” Rottinghaus said, though he added that early air time could also help set the agenda for the race.

Go check out the ad here: http://billkingforhouston.com/.

Everybody knows that Hunter Pence made his MLB debut with the ‘Stros back in 2007. Hunter ended up in third place in the 2007 NL Rookie of the Year voting. Name the two players who were one and two in the voting?

I didn’t know that this had not happened yet. Yogi is very deserving and check this tweet:

Alyson Footer ‏@alysonfooter 34m34 minutes ago
Sign to petition @BarackObama to give #Yankees American icon Yogi Berra the Pres Medal of Freedom #YogiMedal: http://bit.ly/yogiBerra

Commentary has been saying for a while now that locally we do a lousy job of educating folks on how to recycle. There was a story in the Chron this past weekend on local recycling and it talks about folks not knowing how to recycle. For the life of me I cannot understand why we have not put out a better effort to get folks to recycle the right way. Here is from the Chron Story:

To help make the enterprise more economically sound, companies are working harder to educate consumers on what they can and can’t recycle – and renegotiating contracts as they expire.

Waste Management has a campaign called “Recycle Often, Recycle Right” targeting consumers. The company is incorporating education programs into more municipal contracts as they renegotiate them, working with cities to go into schools and distribute materials on what can go in the recycling bin.

In Houston, four staff members do community education on waste and recycling.

Something as simple as putting recycling in a garbage bag throws off the process because the bag can’t be recycled. Depending on the volume workers are dealing with on the conveyer belt, they may rip it open, or just throw out the whole bag and its contents.

In March, Houston’s contamination rate was 17.4 percent.

“A fifth or a sixth of the material that’s going in there is really of no value, and not only is it of no value in terms of the end product, it tremendously increases the processing cost,” said Puneet Bhasin, who now runs Waste Management’s recycling business.

Contamination is why most in the industry see one-bin policies, like that Houston is pursuing, as a step in the wrong direction. Once paper gets wet or gets food on it, it has pretty much lost all value for recyclers.

Here is the entire article: http://www.houstonchronicle.com/business/article/Some-enviro-friendly-items-hurt-recyclers-bottom-6251822.php.

If you ask me, they are not being too creative over there.

Yesterday, one of the local news programs devoted the entire show to prominent working moms and how they juggle their jobs with being a mom. I am thinking that on Father’s Day next month, they probably won’t do a program on how prominent dads juggle their work with being a dad.

In 2007, Hunter Pence got the third most votes for NL Rookie of the Year of course behind winner Ryan Braun and runner-up Troy Tulowitzki.

Hunter is now with the Giants and the Giants are at The Yard for two starting tomorrow evening but Hunter is a little dinged up and probably won’t play.
We still have a five game lead. We split the four game roadie in Anaheim. We’re home for nine.

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