On Progressives

Kellyanne Conway was on “Today” this morning and again was a total embarrassment. I certainly don’t feel sorry for her.

About the only CNN GOP talking head Commentary respects is Alice Stewart, aka @alicetweet. They asked her yesterday about the “SNL” take on Ivanka and she came across talking point free if you know what I mean. That’s why I follow her. Nice job.

This headline was on the front page below the fold in Saturday’s Chron:

Progressives fret over Turner’s focus

This was the sub-headline:

Chief of staff’s departure worries allies advocating for social justice

The story was written by Chron City Hall beat reporters Rebecca Elliott and Mike Morris.   Here is how it starts and parts:

The resignation of Mayor Sylvester Turner’s top deputy – a social justice advocate and one of the mayor’s few confidants in a sea of senior staff appointed by the previous mayor – is fueling worry among aides and allies about the administration’s commitment to the progressive policy goals on which he campaigned.

Turner for months has downplayed his unusual decision to entrust much of the implementation and communication of his policies to his predecessor’s staff, urging focus on big-ticket accomplishments, such as bringing a pension reform deal to the state legislature, soothing tempers on City Council and closing last year’s $160 million budget gap.

However, chief of staff Alison Brock’s departure just 15 months into Turner’s term has stoked renewed angst among supporters who think Turner has not championed the progressive platform for which they worked to get him elected.

“We’re a little concerned, because she was that voice at the table, so we were confident our concerns were being heard,” said Tarsha Jackson of the Texas Organizing Project. “Now, we’re just hopeful the mayor gets someone that shares his vision, the vision that he had when he ran for office. We don’t have an ally in the mayor’s office right now.”

Jackson, who met and befriended Brock in 2004 when she was Turner’s legislative aide, said TOP’s attempts to reform city economic development policies have stalled, despite Brock’s support.

Labor leader Linda Morales said the same of her efforts to push an ordinance asking city contractors to provide better wages, community engagement and job training.

“Labor wants to be a partner with the mayor,” she said. “We want him to speak to his staff and get on the program with us because it’s his agenda we’re trying to push.”


…… Frances Valdez, state director of the immigration group United We Dream and a member of Turner’s criminal justice transition committee, questioned the mayor’s reluctance to weigh in on the national immigration debate.

“I had hoped that the mayor would have developed or implemented actual policies, especially to protect the immigrant community, and it seems like all he’s willing to do is make broad statements, which doesn’t actually provide protection,” Valdez said. “Saying Houston is a welcoming city doesn’t actually provide protection.”

Here is the entire article: http://www.houstonchronicle.com/news/politics/houston/article/Progressives-fret-over-Turner-s-focus-10993920.php?cmpid=btfpm.

Commentary doesn’t spend his time defending the Mayor. He pays folks a whole lot of dough to do that. Commentary also respects Elliott and Morris and I think they do a very good job covering City Hall.

Let me say this. TOP, Labor, and DREAMERs are just part of the local progressive coalition or movement. What about Latino Dems, African American Dems, LGBTers, white libs, and so on? They may have different takes on this. The article would have been more convincing if others from the coalition had been included. Just saying.

I will say this. Whatever happened to the City ID cards for folks without papers that the Mayor committed to during the campaign? Commentary always thought that was a lousy idea. I sure would hate to put all those names and addresses in a database and then let Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick or ICE swoop in and snatch the data. Talk about handing them a raid on a silver platter.   I am ok with that commitment not being fulfilled. Are you with me on that yet?

Meanwhile, the Mayor put this statement out after the article came out:

I hear the concerns of those quoted in “Progressives fret over Turner’s focus” in today’s Houston Chronicle. I, too, will miss the advice and counsel of my Chief of Staff Alison Brock – we’ve fought many tough battles together over the last 18 years and I have great respect for her.

Alison’s departure notwithstanding, we need everyone in the boat right now. There are a lot of important issues in play that have the potential to greatly impact all Houstonians, including those of us who identify as progressives.  Make no mistake, these issues are all interconnected.

Take pension reform – we’re making history by moving controversial legislation through the Texas Legislature. For the first time ever, everyone is united and moving forward together.  Yet, if we fail, Houston will face drastic layoffs and severe service cuts. I’m working every day to prevent such a disaster – because the people who will be hurt the worst are those who rely on government the most: working families, homeless Houstonians, people living at the margins in our society, people who have been left behind as the income gap continues to widen.

Last year, we closed a $160 million shortfall without cutting services or laying off employees. This year, because of ballooning pension payments and the revenue cap that’s slowly strangling our ability to operate, we’re staring down another huge budget gap. Repealing the revenue cap should be a priority that unites every Houstonian, progressive or otherwise.

The fear that is gripping our immigrant communities is real. We’ve taken a stand that Houston is a welcoming city and taken steps to ensure our police officers do their jobs instead of the jobs of federal immigration agents. Is that enough? Of course not, and we will continue to move forward to protect vulnerable Houstonians.

We’re working to provide more flood relief, more affordable housing, thousands of summer jobs for our youth,  new skills and new jobs for the chronically unemployed, and a new holistic approach to homelessness – despite the threat of massive cuts in federal funding being debated right now in Washington.

These fights are about the soul of our city. They are much more important than who is, or is not, on my staff in city government. Winning them will take all of us working together.

Only 6 players have 10 or more career World Serious dingers. 5 are no longer with us. 5 were Yankee greats. 1 wore the Dodger blue. They are all in the Hall of Fame.   Name them, please?

Donald Trump is a known liar, no ifs, ands, or buts.

During the transition, he met with the NY Southern District U.S. Attorney who was appointed by President Obama.

After the meeting, the U.S. Attorney announced before the cameras that Trump and Jeff Sessions wanted him to stick around.

On Friday, U.S. attorneys across the country were told by the Justice Department to resign immediately and clear out their desks by midnight.

On Saturday, the NY SD U.S. Attorney said he was not leaving unless Trump fired him.

Trump fired him.

From the very beginning the U.S. Attorney should have just said at the transition meeting that he was moving on. But noooooo, he actually thought Trump the liar was being honest with him.

I don’t know what his weekend exercise proved. Once he was told to resign, he should have plain and simple. What was the point? Pitiful.

I guess it is time to start paying attention to college basketball.

Mickey Mantle had 18 career World Serious dingers, Babe Ruth 15, Yogi Berra 12, Duke Snider 11, and Lou Gehrig and Reggie Jackson 10 apiece of course.

In case you are wondering, Chase Utley leads all active MLBers with 7 career World Serious dingers. He got them as a Phillie.

Opening Day is three weeks from tonight!

End of an Error

“End of an error” is the banner headline in today’s hard copy Chron sports section and I love it. Excellent! That’s why I subscribe.

While I am on the subject, Commentary has said before that just because you run a professional major sports franchise, that doesn’t make you smarter than the rest of us.

See this tweet:

ABC13 Houston‏Verified account @abc13houston 14h14 hours ago

Osweiler was a Texan for 364 days. That breaks down to $57,692 per day. Or $1.4 million per touchdown. #Texans http://abc13.co/2nkCCNM

Don’t argue, please. They are not smarter than the rest of us.

Name the two teams scheduled to play the first MLB Opening Day game on Sunday, April 2 on ESPN?

Eight weeks from tomorrow, HISD voters will go to the polls to decide on recapture or detachment. Here is from today’s Chron:

Houston ISD voters will face a choice of either paying the state’s $77.5 million recapture fee, or risk losing $98.4 million in tax revenue over the next fiscal year, according to new dollar figures given to trustees.

Those were the options presented to HISD trustees Thursday when for the first time school district officials gave firm numbers on both scenarios since voters last November told district officials to not pay the state’s recapture fee. Recapture involves the state’s mandate that the district pay millions to help subsidize poor districts.

Houston ISD faces recapture because, according to the state’s funding formula, the district is deemed property wealthy even though most of its student population is economically disadvantaged.


If HISD keeps all its commercial properties and benefits from increased property values, Reed estimated the district could see its budget continue to grow over the next five years by $66.8 million after the recapture payment is made. If the commercial properties are detached, he said the district could see a loss of $98.4 million in 2017-2018 and would lose any future property value growth.

“A vote for detachment will see us lose some of our biggest revenue streams in the district,” said Trustee Anna Eastman. “If we don’t go back and vote yes it will begin to force us to dip into our budget or raise taxes to break even. If the law stays the same as it is now, payments will increase but our local budget will increase as well.”

Here is the entire read: http://www.houstonchronicle.com/news/article/For-first-time-HISD-trustees-given-firm-numbers-10991263.php.

We need to follow Anna’s lead on this one for sure.  Folks should have listened to her last fall.

State Rep. Carol Alvarado put this out yesterday:

As a young girl, I grew up in the shadow of the University of Houston just a few miles from campus.  I, like many Houstonians, know that UH is the beating heart of the academic community in Houston.  I could not be more proud of the tremendous success and achievements we have been able to reach under the leadership of Chancellor Khator. 

However, I still find myself unsatisfied.  In fact, I will never be satisfied until UH gets the respect and support we deserve from the State of Texas in the form of access to the Permanent University Fund or “PUF Fund”.  The University of Texas System and Texas A&M System have benefited for years from this fund that excludes UH and every other university system in Texas.  This inequity is why I filed HJR 110 that will create a second PUF Fund known as, PUF II, which will benefit the University of Houston System.  This additional funding source will be critical to the development and growth of our system as we continue to strive for excellence.

I am calling on all UH Cougars to call, write and tweet at your State Representative and Senator to support HJR 110. Let’s continue the H-Town Takeover in Austin this legislative session!

This is an uphill fight, but it is worthy of debate.

Mike Snyder of the Chron has a piece today on voting rights in Pasadena. Here is how it ends:

The Pasadena lawsuit has attracted the attention of national voting-rights activists in the aftermath of a 2013 Supreme Court decision eliminating a requirement that election changes in certain states be cleared in advance by the Justice Department or a federal court. Experts say it’s generally tougher for minority candidates to win elections in at-large, or citywide, races for city councils, county commissions and school boards.

I wondered if a decision by Pasadena to drop the appeal would necessarily be the ideal outcome for advocates of minority voting rights. Wouldn’t an affirmation of Rosenthal’s opinion by the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals – or even the Supreme Court, should the case advance that far – send a stronger message?

But Nina Perales, an attorney with the Mexican-American Legal Defense and Education Fund representing the plaintiffs, said she would have no problem with a victory by default.

“The job of an attorney is to secure a positive outcome for the client,” Perales said. “That’s what’s important here.”

If Isbell’s replacement chooses to drop the appeal, the case will quietly disappear. Pasadena residents will continue electing all eight council members from districts – a system being used this year because the 5th Circuit denied the city’s request for a stay of Rosenthal’s order. And the city government, some $2 million poorer but perhaps a bit wiser, can move on to other issues.

Here is the entire read:


The only thing I am going to say about the Brock Osweiler deal is that I thought it was silly for HEB to have him in ads before he had even had taken a snap. Very dumb.

The Rays host the Yankees of course at 12 noon on Sunday, April 2 on ESPN.

Here is from the ‘Stros website:

The Astros’ promotional schedule this year includes five bobblehead giveaways and one gnome.

This year’s bobbleheads are creative with a “Handshake Series” to honor Jose Altuve and Carlos Correa’s postgame celebration behind second base. There also will be a George Springer bobblehead featuring one of his trademark diving catches. On the year he’s inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame, Jeff Bagwell’s unique batting stance will be immortalized into a bobblehead, as will the celebration of Bagwell, Craig Biggio and Mike Hampton after the Astros clinched the National League Central title 20 years ago.

Lance McCullers drew the honors of being portrayed on a glow-in-the-dark gnome.

Don’t forget to spring forward this Sunday.

Let’s see. Yesterday, the FBI Director said there is no such thing as privacy. Our rides can get hacked. Same for our elections. Our iphones and flat screens. Now this:

Chief Art Acevedo‏Verified account @ArtAcevedo 12h12 hours ago

If you are on @ATT Network there is a problem if you try to call 911. This may be a Nationwide issue. We are looking into the problem now.


Houston smells good‏Verified account @evan7257 12h12 hours ago

So this is not good

That is not what I wanted to hear from the police chief last night. Let’s hope it is a glitch and not a hack. We are already in trouble. This would certainly make it worse.

For those who care, the World Baseball Classic is underway. Carlos Correa is playing for Puerto Rico but is playing third base. Who is playing shortstop for Puerto Rico?

This is a no brainer. Can we get this passed, like right now? Here is from the Chron:

Armed with two more years of evidence that texting while driving is killing hundreds of Texans each year, State Rep. Tom Craddick is back in Austin advocating a statewide ban on sending and reading messages behind the wheel.

Craddick, R-Midland, was joined by numerous supporters Thursday morning in front of the House Transportation Committee. HB 62, a general ban on texting while driving, is again named for Alex Brown,  a 17-year-old West Texas high school senior killed Nov. 10, 2009, when she crashed her truck as she carried on up to four different texting conversations at the time of the crash.

Since, Brown’s parents have become vocal advocates for a texting ban, which has faced a very uphill battle in Texas. Craddick’s bill and similar others have failed to get enough traction to pass both legislative chambers and receive the governor’s signature.

In 2011, the bill came close before then-Gov. Rick Perry vetoed it, citing his concerns with “a government effort to micromanage the behavior of adults.”

Forty-six states ban texting while driving, and 17 ban the use of all handheld devices.

Back in early January, some fella ran a stop sign and I smacked his car pretty good. He got like three citations. A couple or so weeks ago I got three subpoenas to show up for night court last night. After plunking down $5 for parking,  I showed up for a 6 pm docket call. The fella who got the citations was there. So was one of the officers who wrote him up. I figured I was going to be there for at least a couple of hours. Guess what? I was out of there by 6:30. Nice job H-Town municipal courts!

Cleveland’s Francisco Lindor will play shortstop for Puerto Rico of course.

I don’t have anything from The Yard today


The Friendship State?

Commentary would like to remind folks this morning that our official state motto is “friendship.” Sure. We sure don’t sound or act like the “Friendship State” today.

This came out this morning:

Texas Tribune Retweeted

Alexa Ura‏Verified account @alexazura 6h6 hours ago

Houston ISD opposes #SB6, says HISD trustee Anna Eastman — only school district to come out against bill at hearing #txlege

Good for my good friend Anna and HISD!

Pulitzer Prize winning columnist Lisa Falkenberg also has something to say. Here is how she starts out:

Once upon a time, the Texas Senate was regarded as the stately grown-up body of the Legislature and the lower chamber was affectionately referred to as the Animal House.

No more. These days, if you want leadership in Austin, you look down, not up.

Take education policy.

This week, the House’s public education chairman, Houston Republican Rep. Dan Huberty, filed a $1.6 billion proposal that, while imperfect, takes an important first step in addressing some nagging inequities that have dogged the Texas public school finance system for decades.

On Tuesday, his committee heard initial testimony on the bill that would make modest but helpful changes, such as clearing out some of the cobwebs in funding formulas and boosting funding for long-neglected dyslexic students.

What were they doing over in the mature chamber?

The Senate’s Committee on State Affairs was hearing lengthy testimony on a bill regulating potty time for Texans.

And here is how it ends:

Thank the Lord for the House, starting with Speaker Joe Straus, R-San Antonio, who appointed Huberty to chair public education.

Huberty recently made headlines when he said at a Texas Tribune event that vouchers were dead on arrival in the lower chamber. He said the issue had been studied and debated, and there simply wasn’t the support for it in the House.

“Why don’t we talk about the real issues?” the Houston Republican asked. “The discussion needs to be about the 5.3 million children that are in our system today.”

That, my friends, is what a grown-up sounds like – in case some of the kids in the upper chamber forgot.

Here is all of Lisa’s column: http://www.houstonchronicle.com/news/houston-texas/houston/article/Who-are-the-grown-ups-in-Austin-on-education-10984775.php?cmpid=btfpm.

Nice job, Lisa. Tell it like it is!

The hard-core MLB fans know that this player played for 13 different teams (12 franchises) and holds the record for most career pinch hit dingers. He no longer plays but he certainly is still with us. Who am I talking about?

Then this tweet came out last night:

Fox News‏Verified account @FoxNews 13h13 hours ago

.@SenTomCotton: “There is no job in America that Americans will not do.” #oreillyfactor

I beg to differ and let me differ from experience. For the last two years, my part of the city block I live on has been under construction siege. Three house have been completely or near completely rebuilt – rebuilt, not remodeled. The houses on either side of me and one across the street. I am also talking about big and huge houses.   I have seen up close who is doing the heavy lifting so to speak. I hear what they are whistling while they work and they are not whistling American tunes.

Matt Stairs of course has the MLB record with 23 career pinch hit dingers. Stairs played with (in this order) the Expos, Red Sox, A’s, Cubbies, Brewers, Pirates, Royals, Rangers, Tigers, Blue Jays, Phillies, Padres and Nationals. He currently serves as the hitting coach for the Phillies.

As part of the giveaways at The Yard this season, on Friday, April 7 against the Royals, they are handing out 10,000 welcome mats.

Spectacle Day

Leave it up to Dan Patrick to create a spectacle up in Austin today at the State Capitol.   This fella just loves to divide Texas.   I like R.G.’s take here:

Lobbyists and government insiders keep referring to the House as the “adults in the room,” because Lieutenant Governor Dan Patrick has kept the Senate focused on social conservative issues. The House seems more determined to resolve problems that affect the everyday lives of Texas. The contrast between the chambers may never be more evident this session than on Tuesday.

The stage was set Monday when Patrick—ahead of the bathroom bill committee hearing on Tuesday—busted down one of the great walls of American government: church and state. He announced at a press conference that he is joining with organizations of Christian ministers in “Operation of One Million Voices” to pressure the Legislature into passing the so-called bathroom bill that limits restroom visitations in publicly owned buildings to the gender on the person’s birth certificate. Many major corporations, the National Football League, the National Basketball Association, and transgender rights activists say the legislation is discriminatory.

While the bathroom bill always has been a measure aimed at social conservatives, Patrick’s embrace of it as a Christian issue was a surprising step over the invisible wall that has separated church issues from state issues throughout American history.

Here is all of R.G.’s take: http://www.texasmonthly.com/burka-blog/tale-two-legislatures/.

Ain’t it the truth, ain’t it the truth!  Can we just stop the hating?

This will be the fifth season of American League ball for the ‘Stros. Name the four AL teams we have played on Opening Day?

Commentary is curious to see where this is going. Check this from the Chron:

Prominent Houston lawyer Tony Buzbee on Monday accused Harris County District Attorney Kim Ogg of “playing politics,” saying prosecutors are trying to revive a DWI case against him that has already been expunged.

Buzbee said Ogg’s office has filed a sealed motion seeking to reopen the criminal case by overturning a decision last month by a civil court judge that expunged the case files.

The district attorney’s office declined to comment on the details of the motion.

“We have filed a document that was sealed by the clerk,” said First Assistant District Attorney Tom Berg by e-mail. “As a result, we are not at liberty to discuss that document.”

Buzbee said Ogg singled him out because outgoing District Attorney Devon Anderson personally dismissed his case in the days before she left office at the end of the year.


The dismissal made headlines after it happened Dec. 9 for several reasons, including that Anderson personally signed the form.

It also happened in a court with the only misdemeanor judge in Harris County who expressly prohibits “pretrial intervention” – a type of informal probation for suspects charged with driving while intoxicated.

Buzbee said he would have won the case at trial.

“The case is over; had it not been dismissed due to multiple irregularities that occurred,” he said, “I would have won it on the merits.”

Here is the entire read: http://www.houstonchronicle.com/news/houston-texas/houston/article/Prominent-attorney-may-land-back-in-court-over-10981644.php.

I am sure there is an explanation for all of this.  I am pretty sure we are going to be hearing a lot more about this deal so stay tuned for sure.

Let’s see, the Muslim back on.

This fella sure works his arse off to make sure everyone knows he’s a clown of the first order.   This is from probably a kazillion tweets this morning:

Republican Jason Chaffetz thinks the reason you couldn’t afford health insurance is because you bought an iPhone.

What a moron!  What a complete moron!

We have played Cleveland, the Rangers, the Royals, and the Yankees of course on Opening Day the past four seasons.

Move over Diamond Level. Move over Insperity Club. Check out the new premium seating or standing or catching BP fly balls at The Yard where Tal’s Hill used to be:

Whether you want to entertain clients, guests, or reward employees, our brand new Field Level Suite has the space to impress! The new renovations allow a premium space in center field for a one of a kind experience. This is another exciting update that showcases the commitment to making Minute Maid Park a great destination for fans of all ages by providing a modern, communal gathering place for fans to enjoy before, during and after games all season long.

  • All-inclusive food and non-alcoholic beverages
  • Access to a premium cash bar
  • Includes 100 tickets or can be split into two groups of 50 tickets
  • Includes the premium experience of being able to view major league batting practice on the field. Bring your gloves!They didn’t put out a price tag on this.
  • All sales are final and no refunds, cancellation or exchanges will be given
  • * Access to a premium cash bar
  • * Batting practice times subject to change or cancellation
  • * All participants must sign a personal injury waiver before entering the field

They didn’t put a price tag on this though.

On this day in 1836, the Alamo fell. Remember! Now there is your Texas history.

This about sums up the weekend. From a Jake Tapper tweet:

POTUS makes wild accusation w/zero evidence

WH searches for evidence & cant find any

WH tells Congress to find evidence/no further comment

More from Jake:

4/Moreover we cannot pretend we haven’t been here before, w/POTUS putting out wild accusations that are untethered to reality.


5/Obama’s birth certificate/ Vaccines/ Ted Cruz’s father & Lee Harvey Oswald / crowd sizes/ Vince Foster / Murder rate / 3-5 illegal votes


WH officials with whom I spoke said POTUS got the info about wiretap from media – Breitbart, Levin – not from govt sources.

The FBI Director is saying it didn’t happen.

The Russians have Trump by the you know whats.

One thing is for sure. You pretty much give up your dignity when you go work for Donald Trump. The press secretary gave his up on day 2. Yesterday, the press secretary sent out his deputy to do the news shows and her dignity was shredded away. Pitiful.

The ‘Stros have 55 Opening Day games under their belt. Of the 15 NL teams, we have played 13 of them on Opening Day. Name the two that we haven’t played on Opening Day?

Now this one is probably a put down of sorts. Commentary is talking about yesterday’s E-Board take on the #HTownTakeover of the UT Chancellor. This is how the take starts:

There have been times in Texas history when small-minded meddling by elected officials has hampered, hindered or derailed efforts by the state’s colleges and universities to push beyond the regional, to be innovative and far-sighted. To lead.

That’s the role University of Texas System Chancellor William H. McRaven sought to play when he announced last year that the System would begin exploring opportunities to establish more of a presence in the state’s largest city. Perhaps the native San Antonian should have been aware that thinking big, particularly in the realm of higher education, occasionally makes folks nervous in this state.

He could have recalled Gov. “Farmer Jim” Ferguson, who, before being impeached, vetoed almost the entire budget of the University of Texas because he couldn’t oust professors and a president who provoked his ire. He might also have remembered Homer Rainey, the UT president fired by regents appointed by Govs. W. Lee “Pass the Biscuits, Pappy” O’Daniel and Coke Stevenson. Rainey lost his job in part because he refused to fire an English professor who assigned the John Dos Passos novel “USA.”

McRaven’s misbegotten Houston venture is less momentous than the aforementioned incidents, simply because plans for the 300-acre plot of land UT purchased in southeast Houston never got beyond the conceptual stage.

It goes on to say UH backers who opposed the UT move were “provincial” and during this effort, UH “allowed its insecurities to show.”

The end of the take is here:

Granted, McRaven could have kept this community and its elected officials better informed, particularly on the land deal that set the plan in motion. He could have worked harder to assure UH that UT wasn’t encroaching. As far as Houston is concerned, the chancellor’s mistakes are now academic, so to speak.

More pertinent to this community is the message we convey about our openness to big ideas and ambitious plans. Jesse Jones, Dominque de Menil, George Mitchell and Dr. Denton Cooley, among a host of Houston visionaries down through the years, would have said yes, we believe. Unlike Boston, New York and other cities eager to advance the frontiers of knowledge, Houston reverted to the Jim Ferguson, Pappy O’Daniel tradition.

Here is the entire take: http://www.houstonchronicle.com/opinion/editorials/article/Burned-orange-10977202.php.

Missed opportunity? Depends on your point of view. The E-Board take still is a put down of sorts.

From today’s Chron:

Harris County Democrats tapped a consultant and party fundraiser for chair Sunday, with hundreds of precinct chairs voting in a close race.

Lillie Schechter will replace Lane Lewis, who resigned in February after about five years of service.

Schechter said Sunday that the party must immediately begin recruiting and training candidates to run in 2018. Democrats must expand fundraising efforts by attracting new donors online, at events and in the membership of local progressive and millennial groups, she said.

The local party comes off sweeping success in the 2016 election, winning every countywide position on the ballot.

Ok. I wonder if that means recruiting candidates to run against Hunker Down and for Precinct 2 Commissioner. We will soon find out.

The ‘Stros have never played the D-Backs or Mets on Opening Day of course. FYI: We played the Nationals when they were the Expos.

Opening Day is four weeks from today.  You going?

Bromance at the Core

Donald Trump is blaming Dems for all this Russia mess. Let’s not forget. At the core of all of this is Trump’s bromance with Putin. Let’s not forget!

The FBI’s Director’s legacy will be his helping mess with Hillary’s campaign. Pure and simple. He could help himself out by cooperating. Here is this from Politico.

The top Democrat on the House Intelligence Committee on Thursday accused FBI Director James Comey of withholding crucial information about its probe into Russian interference in the election and raised the prospect of subpoenaing the agency.

“I would say at this point we know less than a fraction of what the FBI knows,” Rep. Adam Schiff (D-Calif.) told reporters after a briefing with Comey.

“I appreciate we had a long briefing and testimony from the director today, but in order for us to do our investigation in a thorough and credible way, we’re gonna need the FBI to fully cooperate, to be willing to tell us the length and breadth of any counterintelligence investigations they are conducting,” Schiff said. “At this point, the director was not willing to do that.”

Here is the entire read: http://www.politico.com/story/2017/03/schiff-doj-235615.

It makes you wonder about the FBI’s leadership.

This was announced yesterday:

Former President Barack Obama will receive this year’s John F. Kennedy Profile in Courage Award, the John F. Kennedy Library Foundation announced Thursday.

One fella who will never get near a profile in courage is U.S. Sen. John Cornyn. He put out an Op-Ed a few days ago on saving NAFTA. He represents a state that benefits the most from NAFTA. He hardly came to NAFTA’s defense last year when Trump was bashing it. Not a profile in courage in my book.  What a tool.

Among MLBers on a current roster, who is on top in career grand salamis?

It looks like SXSW is in cahoots with ICE. See this from the Express News:

At least one band has announced its canceled plans to play at the 2017 South by Southwest festival after reviewing contract details for international artists and the possibility for deportation, a move that has caused outrage across the internet.

Felix Walworth, a musician involved with the bands Told Slant, Eskimeaux and Bellows, tweeted a photo of his SXSW contract for the week-long festival that starts next week in downtown Austin.

The contract states that if an artist acts “in ways that adversely affect the viability of their official SXSW showcase,” festival officials will notify immigration authorities, among other actions, according to the photo Walworth posted.

Walworth canceled Told Slant’s performance after reviewing the contract, he said. The musician’s tweet has since amassed more than 1,000 retweets and likes. Within hours the controversy even reached the attention of a Texas congressman. 

“SXSW is a source of incredible pride for Austin and Texas,” U.S. Rep. Joaquin Castro, D-San Antonio tweeted. “I hope the festival will clear this up soon.

“I’m not interested in aligning myself with an institution that interacts with immigration authorities as a means of controlling where art is shared and performed, and who makes money off of it,” Walworth said.

SXSW Director Roland Swenson told the Austin American-Statesman the photo Walworth posted has information that comes from “two different parts of the artist agreement.” He said the two parts were altered to give “a much worse impression than what is real.”

However, a reporter from a National Public Radio affiliate in New Orleans tweeted a photo of a SXSW artist contract he obtained, and the language matches that of Walworth’s screen shot. Walworth also posted a video of the contract showing that it had not been altered.

Money, money, money. SXSW is weak if you ask me. Here is the Express News article: http://www.mysanantonio.com/news/local/article/Joaquin-Castro-on-SXSW-immigration-controversy-10972888.php.

From the we kicked the fella’s arse who planned the raid that took down Bin Laden Dept.:

Dear Friends,

The University of Houston and alumni recently won a major victory as Chancellor McRaven from the University of Texas System reversed course on the 332 acres of land purchased near UH.  In a press release the Chancellor announced his intention to sell the land and to focus on the 14 institutions that the UT System already has. I’m so proud of the way the Cougar family banded together throughout the entire process.  From the leadership of Chancellor Khator, to the Board of Regents, to the members of the legislature, to the alumni base and students, the Cougar family adhered to the highest standard of integrity and class. When Cougars stand together in solidarity, there is no limit to what we can accomplish.    

State Rep. Carol Alvarado

Just kidding!

Check out Nick Anderson’s latest cartoon here: http://www.houstonchronicle.com/opinion/anderson/article/Pension-Reform-10972963.php.

Chuckle, chuckle.

Like I said.  Bill King isn’t going away.

Albert Pujols of course leads with 13 career grand salamis.

They are playing college ball at The Yard this weekend.