Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Here Is Where I'll Stay

Holloway's Bakery, a longtime provider of baked goods in Laredo, won't move, no matter what progress (Guadalupe overpass) is taking place behind it.

New Music Tues.

Million dollar hair

The most famous head of hair in the NFL is now the most expensive! Troy Polamalu of the Pittsburgh Steelers had a $1,000,000 insurance policy taken out on his long locks by Head & Shoulders, one of his endorsers.

They used the well-known Lloyd's of London who has insured many unusual items including Tina Turner's legs, Keith Richards' fingers, and wrestler Ric Flair's body!

I guess this was possibly done to prevent more tackles by using Troy's hair as seen in this video. Ouch!

Money

Where does our tax money go?  USA Today gives us an idea.
As caseloads for all the programs have soared, so have costs. The federal price tag for Medicaid has jumped 36% in two years, to $273 billion. Jobless benefits have soared from $43 billion to $160 billion. The food stamps program has risen 80%, to $70 billion. Welfare is up 24%, to $22 billion. Taken together, they cost more than Medicare
Did you get that?:  273B for Medicaid; 160B for unemployment benefits; 70B for food stamps; and 22B for welfare.

Those sound like astronomical amounts, and they are; but how much of our pay actually goes in to those programs?  I looked at my current pay stub and calculated that the federal withholding amounts to 5% of my earnings.  For every $100 I make, $5 goes to Washington.  That 5% has to be distributed to other expenditures at the federal level, like defense, which makes up approximately 23% of government spending.

Now keep in mind that I'm not including my FICA and Medicare deduction (my employer separates FICA and Medicare into separate columns).  I'm focusing on the 5% that goes to fund the above mentioned programs because of the rise in participants and the derision usually pointed in their direction.

When I break it down and take into account that part of my 5% goes into defense, education, transportation, and not just social programs, it doesn't seem like so much.  I don't want to seem dismissive, but when I put things into perspective, I find out that the sting isn't that potent.  Naturally those who make more than I do will contribute a bit more.  The only reason I chose to talk about this is because we seem to waste a lot of time and energy worrying about the supposed distribution of wealth.  We worry about those who might not be pulling their own weight, and all that negative energy just shortens our lives.

When Medicaid, food stamps, unemployment, and welfare fight for a portion of my five percent, suddenly I don't have a need to bust a vein.
 

Monday, August 30, 2010

Run And Tell That!

The better half and I have been digging on the story of Antoine Dodson ever since she heard it from one of her nieces.  Dodson became an internet sensation after he was seen in a newscast venting about the break-in at his place of residence.  Take a look.



Of course the situation was pretty serious as his sister was almost assaulted.  Luckily Antoine jumped into action and saved the day.  After seeing the story on t.v., the Gregory brothers went to work and created a song to commemorate the occasion, so to speak.  Enjoy. 

"La Barbie"

Via the LMT:
Update 8:40 p.m. 08/30/10 MEXICO CITY — Federal police on Monday captured a Laredo-born alleged drug kingpin who faces trafficking charges in the U.S. and has been blamed for a vicious turf war that has included bodies hung from bridges and shootouts in central Mexico.

Thanks to reader input.

Education

Henry Cuellar writes for the Huffington Post.
I tell my daughters, 'Finish your homework. People in India and China are starving for your job.'"
Funny.  Some years back he was endorsed by the Club for Growth and now he's featured on the Huff. Post.

The Broncos Last Stand


Nearing the end

Broncos enter playoffs knowing the final out lies ahead


By CÉSAR G. RODRIGUEZ
Laredo Morning Times
Published: Monday, August 30, 2010 1:35 AM CDT


The 2,344 Laredo Broncos fans on hand Sunday night at Veterans Field seemed to be enjoying the game against Costal Bend, as the Broncs hung on to a 14-13 lead in the top of the seventh at press time.

Photo courtesy of the Laredo Times.

The playoffs start tomorrow at Veterans Field at 7:30 p.m. with an opponent to be determined.  Visit the Broncos website for updated information.

Construction Work Downtown

Access to an area of downtown Laredo has been hindered due to work being done on drainage pipes.  Retailers are now complaining that the work has taken longer than was promised.  In addition, the use of heavy equipment to dig up Flores Ave. has caused damage to some stores in the area and city officials are looking into the possibility of assisting the store owners with the cost of repairs.


The work was contracted to a company out of Houston, MDA.  Mid November was the deadline for the repairs to be finished but El Manana reports that the new target has been set for October.  One delay that was noted was said to be caused by the recent flooding of the Rio Grande.

Store owners have been hurting because of the detours placed around the work site.  Sales have dropped dramatically forcing retailers to let go of personnel and even closing up their shops altogether.  One person was disappointed at not selling anything during the recent tax-free weekend. 

2010 has not been a good year for a lot of people.  It may be good for one construction company in East Texas but not for local retailers already feeling the pinch of a bad economy, among other things. 
One thing's for sure, Kirk Douglas couldn't film a scene in downtown Laredo the way things are right now.

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Hidalgo Mayor Killed

It'll never be the same and it's not going to get any better.

Primetime Emmy Awards



It's another red carpet night as NBC broadcasts the 62nd Emmy Awards with host Jimmy Fallon at 7pm tonight.

There are many good shows, actors, and actresses nominated. My personal faves include Top Chef, Glee, Breaking Bad, Friday Night Lights, and LOST!

With LOST just recently ending their six-season run, I hope they get some well deserved Emmys (Matthew Fox and Terry O'Quinn - pictured right).

Most long overdue nominations, in my humble opinion, are those for Friday Night Lights' lead actor and actress Kyle Chandler and Connie Britton (pictured left). They are one of the most naturally realistic married couples on TV. They won't win, but they will be there!

Most unnecessary nomination has to be the best actor nod in a comedy for Tony Shalhoub of Monk. Wasn't that show cancelled like 5 years ago? (A close second to Tony is any recognition of Two and a Half Men...puh-leez!)

And what will they be wearing? Can't wait!

(Sidebar: Scheduling conflict! The NFL decided to nationally televise a Steelers game at the same time as the Emmys. Ugh! Getting that DVR ready.)

Piper Updates: Jon Hamm looks gorgeous.
                              Love that dress on Julia Louie-Dreyfuss.
                              Top Chef wins Reality category!


Service Pledge

Twenty five minutes is pretty good if you consider making contact with the triage nurse, then going to register, going back to the lobby and having someone call you to the back to see an M.D.

From there it could be hours for you to wait for lab work, x-rays, EKGs, etc.  My best advice is for you to get there early.  Usually things run much faster in the morning hours; that is if you don't get diverted to your own doctor's office.

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Look At Me!

When you make the trip up to Austin to lobby for money, you've got to have your game face on.

Priorities

While Glen Beck does everything in his power to restore America's honor, I'll be busy looking for a new washing machine.

Friday, August 27, 2010

Violence: Nuevo Laredo

Something went down today.
Nuevo Laredo officials confirmed via Twitter “the existence of a risky situation” in Colonia Infonavit-Fundadores, shortly before 11:30 a.m.

Relationship Between SCAN And TAMIU Alumni Worsens

Que Fregados brings us the exclusive scoop of the TAMIU Alumni Association's suit against the Webb County Community Coalition, an extension of SCAN.  Coalition staff tries to raise awareness within the community about the dangers of underage drinking and drug use.  But in trying to prohibit the sale of alcohol at events held on university grounds, they appear to have overstepped their reach.

Community Coaliton Director, Mario Flores, explains to El Manana how alcohol use is seen in kids as young as seven years old.  According to him, children gain access to alcohol at home or at family gatherings without the caregivers' knowledge.  This is nothing new; we've all heard stories of minors getting in to their parents' liquor cabinet, or parents hosting parties where alcohol is knowingly served to adolescents.  But access to alcoholic beverages at public events is something different altogether.  I commend Mr. Flores and his colleagues for their work, but targeting events like the AutMus Fest, where the audience is supervised by event promoters and security staff, is overkill. 

Laredoans do like to throw back a glass or ten.  Practically every social gathering, be it private or public, involves alcohol.  If alcohol is not available, you'll surely get a comment from some displeased attendee; So I can see where the WCCC is coming from by trying to curb underage drinking.  Trouble is, now they've been slapped with a lawsuit claiming defamation and tortious interference.

I really hope both groups (SCAN and the alumni organization) can come to some sort of agreement and work together to better our community.  Both organizations are committed to helping Laredoans.  La Sanbe hopes things don't get worse between them, because if they do, we'll hear more language that we don't quite understand like tortious interference.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Most Overcooked Site Address Ever

Elections

Local candidates now know what placement they've clinched on the November ballot.  In the mayoral category, incumbent Raul Salinas will have the top spot.   Via NPR:
the vast majority of time coming first on the ballot increases a candidate's vote total by an average of two percent.
That bodes well for Salinas.  Being first on the ballot and name recognition definitely help.  In other states, a candidate's name will be alternated on the list to make things fair, but I'm not going to hold my breath that that will happen here.

The mayor does have weaknesses, but in trying to expose them, his opponents might feel the backlash thus sending more votes to Salinas.  At this point, the candidates running against him might count on coming in second and having a runoff take place.  With five candidates confirmed, it's likely that a runoff will occur.  But that's assuming that he comes out with the most votes. 

Again, the people could take his shortcomings  (lack of leadership) into account.  But what are the chances that he loses what with Laredo not having a one-term mayor in recent history.  Could he break the streak?  We'll have to wait and see.




 

Those Rugs Really Tied The Room Together

Bronx resident Omar Rivera did a nasty thing:  he interrupted members of the Iman Mosque by emptying his bladder.
"He fumbled over to our rugs where people were praying" and then committed the despicable desecration, Sadouki said,

Rivera was detained and charged with trespassing.  Officials don't think he specifically targeted Muslims with his unruly behavior because he was obviously intoxicated.  Reports now state that he didn't even know he was in a mosque.

This could be an open and shut case.  Drunken men walk into strange places and do their thing all the time.  Afterwards, they're arrested, paraded in front of the media, fined and don't get to work at the t.v. station as a sportscaster ever again.  But given the current anti-Muslim atmosphere, this might blow up and turn into an international incident.  I pray that it doesn't because it might give people the impression that persons with a name like Rivera like to get plastered.  That wouldn't be good.

We'll wait and see what comes of this.  It might get nasty as incidents with rugs have proved in the past.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Enjoy

Borracho Ogado



Editor's note: Spelling in title could be Ahogado.. or not. Depends if source is trained in the use of proper Spanish grammar and spelling.

DJ Responds With Emotions

It might not be usual conversation at the dining room table, but leave it to local assclown Jay St. John to let us know how he feels about subjects that have nothing to do with us. 
It's a slap in every American's face, it's insensitive, it's disrespectful; just because it's legal don't make it right.
No, he's not talking about Mayor Raul Salinas' parking habits.  He's actually referring to the proposed Islamic community center in lower Manhattan.  Take a listen.

       

                       
   
Powered by Podbean.com
   



    
Meanwhile, those with closer ties to 911 voice their support.

No Pesos

Pesos, please, to enter U.S.

By MELVA LAVÍN-CASTILLO AND MIGUEL TIMOSHENKOV
LAREDO MORNING TIMES
Published: Wednesday, August 25, 2010 2:08 AM CDT
Travelers entering the U.S. from Mexico will no longer be able to pay using U.S. dollars at the bridge, federal authorities announced Monday.
The change, made by the federal treasury department, Secretaria de Hacienda y Credito Publico, and published the announcement in the Diario Oficial de la Federacion, will apply to toll roads and bridge crossings into the United States.

I don't cross into Nuevo Laredo often so I don't have spare pesos laying around.  If and when I visit, I'll have to break a dollar bill by buying some Chiclets or something.

UPDATE:
Dollars OK at bridges again

By MIGUEL TIMOSHENKOV
LAREDO MORNING TIMES
Published: Thursday, August 26, 2010 12:53 AM CDT
NUEVO LAREDO — It took only 48 hours for Mexico’s road and bridge department to announce that the government would again accept tolls paid in U.S. currency at the international bridges.

Can It Get Any Nastier?

Raul Salinas has had trouble taking a stance on a number of issues.  Not too long ago, the issue of an investigation into First Transit's insurance provider came up.  Public comment was discouraged due to the pending investigation.  The mayor wanted to hear El Metro employees express their concerns, but Councilman Rendon voiced his displeasure which lead the mayor to change his mind and deny public comment. 

His leadership again came into question recently when city council discussed third party funding.  Only this time, he was badgered by one of his opponents in the upcoming mayoral race, Gene Belmares.  At stake was funding for the Laredo Development Foundation.  The mayor didn't do a good job of standing up for himself, much less showing leadership.  But Belmares does look like a buffoon in blowing his top.  Check it out.

Expensive Trash Cans


Laredo, TX – Aug. 25, 2010) Recently, the City of Laredo Environmental Services Department has placed some new, and very interesting, trashcans throughout downtown Laredo. These sleek, “Big Belly” trashcans (photos attached) are equipped with a solar-paneled trash compactor, designed to compact the trash, and help cut down on fuel costs, greenhouse emissions and landfill space.


Thanks to the $170,000 from the Energy Efficiency and Conservative Block Grant from the Department of Energy, the Environmental Services Department is purchasing approximately 45 solar trash compactors, at a cost of $3,700 each. According to the manufacturer’s website, these trash compactors can reduce fuel costs and greenhouse emissions by up to 80%.

“The purpose of the trash compactors is to reduce the number of trips for emptying downtown’s trash cans, thus reducing fuel costs and greenhouse gas emissions,” said John Porter, assistant director for the Environmental Services Department. “Another purpose of these trash compactors is for public education on energy conservation.”

Info. courtesy of the City of Laredo.

Immigration

Lawyers stunned at the actions of the Dept. of Homeland Security.
Culling the immigration court system dockets of noncriminals started in earnest in Houston about a month ago and has stunned local immigration attorneys, who have reported coming to court anticipating clients' deportations only to learn that the government was dismissing their cases

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Three Dog Night & the LOST Connection

The 6th season of the TV show LOST came out Tuesday on DVD. Also available on DVD or Blu-Ray is the complete set of the six seasons (pictured).

Three Dog Night will be performing as part of the Empty Bowls fundraiser for the South Texas Food Bank
on Wednesday August 25th at the Laredo Energy Arena.

There's a song of theirs named "Shambala" that is forever part of LOST. In episode 10 of season 3, the LOST gang finds an old VW van that was mysteriously abandoned years ago on the island. Hurley wants to get it running again, and he does in a very daring way. "Shambala" can be heard at the start of the episode which takes place in the 70's flashback during Hurley's childhood (with his dad, a wigged-out Cheech Marin). Then we can hear it again as an old 8-track tape kicks in just as the van revs up on the island.

We here at LaSanbe hope you take the opportunity to go hear some good music and contribute to a very good cause Wednesday night at the LEA.

Here's the LOST clip:

New Music Tuesday

Eels - Tomorrow Morning album.  Good.

Candidates For City Seats

City hall will host a lottery tomorrow for those seeking municipal seats this November.  The number picked by each candidate will determine their place on the ballot.  That's tomorrow at council chambers at 5:30 p.m.

District I

Cm. Mike Garza
Rolando Garcia

District III
Cm. Michael Landeck
Jesus Romero
Ricardo Hinojosa
Abraham Rodriguez
UPDATE:  Alejandro Perez Jr.


Municipal Court Judge
Madeline Lopez Escoto
Juan Caballero
Charles Wise
Rosie Cuellar-Castillo
UPDATE: George Victor Garcia II

District II
Victor Garcia
Esteban Rangel
Barney Garcia

District VI
Fred Santos IV
Orlando Navarro
Javier Mendoza
Dr. Emilio Martinez
Carlos A. San Miguel
UPDATE:  Manuel "Manny" Arechiga Jr.

Mayor
Mayor Raul Salinas
Cm. Gene Belmares
Cm. Jose A. Valdez Jr.
Jose Juan Ramirez
James Joel Newland

Info. courtesy of the City of Laredo.

Best In Universe

Congratulations to Ms. Jimena Navarrete for inheriting good genes winning the title of Miss Universe.  Well done.

But I want to focus on someone else who was front and center at the event.  No, not the lovely Natalie Morales, but the aging rocker who won't let go of his security (blanket) bandana, Bret Michaels.  Come on man, stop hiding your baldness.  Man up and free your scalp. 

The head wrap and denial clash with your imitation Armani suit.  Be done with it.

Photos courtesy of Isaac Brekken AP





The Hoff



Was watching the roast of David HasseltheHoff. Didn't get why one of the roasters showed up in a jacket and bikini briefs. So LaSanbe's massive research team went to work to uncover the original inspiration. Damn. Just damn.

Richard "Heatwave" Berler Brings The Noise

The temperature got up to a scorching 106 degrees yesterday.  With it we got this riveting report.

Monday, August 23, 2010

Jaime Canales And I Talk JJAEP

Webb County Commissioners Court recently approved funding for the construction of the Juvenile Justice Alternative Education Program facility.  JJAEP Principal Jaime Canales spent some time with us to discuss this new development and to give us some insight into the program itself.  Take a listen.

       

                       
   
Powered by Podbean.com
   


    

71 Days Left

Apparently Rick Perry doesn't want to debate Bill White, can't account for his supposed hectic schedule, and doesn't like one-on-one interviews.  Via the Texas Tribune.
Perry appeared at two in-state press conferences, but his schedule shows no individual interviews with Texas media outlets. Paterson sat down for a total of 18 one-on-one interviews, and Schwarzenegger did two sit-downs with California broadcast journalists. Cesinger says Perry takes questions during media availabilities — a few questions from a scrum of gathered reporters — at "just about every event [he] speaks at." She estimates that such availabilities occurred "about half the month," although she offered no official accounting. Perry has also declined to meet with editorial boards in 2010, both during the gubernatorial primary and again during the general election campaign.
The part of "takes questions during media availabilities" reminds me of someone else.  Actually, it reminds me of several homegrown politicians. 

Welcome To My Life

New School Year

Officials: Put cell phones away

By César G. Rodriguez
LAREDO MORNING TIMES
Published: Monday, August 23, 2010 6:08 AM CDT
City, county and school district law enforcement officials, along with administrators and cell phone representatives urged motorists to not “txt n driv.”

Today we're reminded to be a little more careful around school zones.  We're also reminded that school fundraisers will abound.  Clubs will be sending forth their raffle tickets; eventually we'll be hounded by in-laws and co-workers to buy in to their box of candies.  And let's not forget the dreaded science project where the parent ends up doing more than the student.  Oh, it's going to be a hoot.  Suddenly cell phones are the least of my worries.

Tourism


El Manana brings us the news that the Convention and Visitors Bureau is working on their 2011 promotional guide.  It promises to be colorful and first rate.
El Buró de Visitantes y Convenciones de la ciudad de Laredo, está por lanzar su revista anual de promoción 2011, se trata de una edición de 76 páginas de completo e intenso color, en un papel de primera calidad.
76 pages of brilliant border culture.  Translation:  La Posada, the Jalapeno Festival, and grown men and women in wigs will be featured.  The other 73 pages will be dedicated to Mayor Raul Salinas' recipes.  Look for his chicken pepperoni entry; it's sure to delight. 

The publication is headed to locations throughout the U.S., Canada and Mexico.  Wherever a battered suitcase makes an appearance, this guide will be there.  Whenever a man wearing socks with flip flops takes a picture of his sun-beaten family, this guide will be there.  And when a rental car attendant lets out a frustrated sigh because the car that's just been returned is covered with cotton candy and hot sauce, this guide will be there. 

Those interested in placing an ad in this future bird cage liner can call (956)723-4389 or (956)795-2200. 

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Chatting

       

                       
   
Powered by Podbean.com
   


   

More Perros

Hold it right there!!!!

Mallakhamb

A little mallakhamb action for this fine Sunday. Things are getting desperate. Football season. Get. Here. Now.

It's back to school time

Good luck to all recent high school graduates who will be taking their first college course.

Saturday, August 21, 2010

LaSanbe Meets The Outdoors

Councilman Mike Garza was out in his district to present a new feature to a park - canopies over playground equipment.  The park is located several blocks south of the Century City entrance on Bob Bullock Lp.  I talked to him about council's concerted effort towards park space throughout the city and the issue of vandalism at these facilities and his district.

Birthday Card Came With Its Own Monkey Poop

Birthday heroin


Jail officials intercept drug-laced card

By César G. Rodriguez
LAREDO MORNING TIMES
Published: Saturday, August 21, 2010 12:27 AM CDT
Jail officers seized a colorful birthday card, illustrated with cheerful monkeys, after discovering 2.5 grams of black tar heroin concealed carefully in its folds Friday.

Past Things

I'll see your rewinder, and raise you a (landline) phone with a chord.

Image Is Everything

Things definitely could be better around here.
To rebrand the city, Ms. Lopez and her team ditched Laredo's former "Gateway to Mexico" motto and replaced it with: "Laredo: Rediscover our Flavor."

Friday, August 20, 2010

Not Government Motors

Things are turning around for G.M.
Last week, G.M. announced a second-quarter profit of $1.3 billion, its strongest quarterly performance in six years. Analysts credit much of its turnaround to the forceful leadership of Mr. Whitacre, who stripped down G.M.’s organizational chart, replaced dozens of executives and tried to instill confidence in employees that they were working for a winner in the marketplace again.
The government may have bailed them out, but it was not going to be permanent.
“It’s been our top objective to pay the taxpayer back and have the government not be involved in any way, shape or form with this company,” he said. “We’ve improved our reputation quite a bit, but we still have a long way to go.”
It very well could be that government is not always the problem some make it out to be.

The Word


If you need to get the word out, just place a couple of megaphones on top of your rig.

Now hear this:  The Latin Lover, Intocable, and Pirata Morgan will be some of the featured wrestlers at Veterans Field tomorrow.  Show starts at 7:30.   

Jose Canseco Talks Clemens

Happy Sales Tax Holiday

If you're like me, you will be avoiding the crowds shuffling through school uniforms and school supplies at most stores.

I'd rather pay the sales tax and avoid the long lines. But there should be many people out there shopping trying to save some dinero.

Here's a list of what's tax-free. Unfortunately, personal flotation devices are on the "taxed" list.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Premier

I saw a sign for Premier High Schools at the corner of Chihuahua and Bartlet Ave.  Their selling point:  4-hour days.  Hell, I'd go there if I only had to be present for four hours. 

Muslim Points Guards

This whole issue with the proposed Islamic community center near Ground Zero has reached ridiculous proportions.  Thankfully Al Franken weighs in.
“I don’t know how many of you have been to New York, but if a building is two blocks away from anything, you can’t see it. It’s a community center. They’re going to have a gym. They’re going to have point guards. Muslim point guards,” Franken said, to laughter and applause.
For all the macho posturing republicans like to adopt (think cod piece, Reagan on a horse, "Big John" Cornyn, California's 'Governator,' Ted Nugent, Bill O'Reilly, etc.) they're really just a bunch of Frank Burnses.  They act tough but fear everything, especially Muslim points guards.

Los Dos Laredos Park

Still in a state of disrepair after flood waters swept through the area early last month.

Barnes and NoMas


Looks like the giant of book retailing is going up in smoke in a fire sale. There were many raised eye brows about Laredo not having a book store and many reasons for that particular case. At the same time, the underlying economics of books and other print media are changing drastically.

Adding fuel to the fire (no pun), B&N was slow in adapting to new competitors like Amazon.com or new technologies like the Kindle book reader. Business can be a brutal game. Be careful out there.. (you fledgling newspaper operations know who you are)

Taxes

LISD approves more raises

By Nick Georgiou
Laredo Morning Times
Published: Thursday, August 19, 2010 2:37 AM CDT
Going against administration’s recommendation, LISD will dip into its fund balance to provide pay raises to employees and increase the district’s contribution to their health insurance premiums, trustees decided late Wednesday.

The LMT story goes on to say that the board approved the budget for the upcoming school year.  But it's this part that I found interesting:
But because of increases in the average market value and taxable value of residences, a property’s yearly tax bill will increase an average of $16.65.
Elected officials can always rely on increased property values to fatten their operating budgets somewhat.  And at the same time they can go to the public and state that they haven't raised taxes.  Meanwhile they collect more money from us.

That's fine and dandy; I don't mind paying taxes.  What I do mind is for a politician to stand there and tell me that he or she is doing me a favor, when in fact, they aren't.

UPDATE:  ACT scores down, but.......

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Out Of Iraq

This is a big deal.
(CBS/AP)  As their convoy reached the barbed wire at the border crossing out of Iraq on Wednesday, the soldiers whooped and cheered. Then they scrambled out of their stifling hot armored vehicles, unfurled an American flag and posed for group photos. 

Who Else?

City: Tax foreign shoppers


By Zach Lindsey
LAREDO MORNING TIMES
Published: Wednesday, August 18, 2010 3:55 AM CDT 
If the City of Laredo gets its way, the Texas Legislature will do away with manifiestos this upcoming session.
City Hall's "Alienation 2010 Tour" keeps chugging along.  So far they've managed to worsen their relationship with:  uninsured motorists, El Metro riders, the Horizon Group (El Portal), The Laredo Broncos, residents of Los Martinez in West Laredo, Webb County Commissioners Court, proponents of at-large districts and people who put out their recyclables in blue bags.  Now they want to tax Mexican shoppers. 
It's possible that they only ones who haven't been offended by city council are the residents of the city cemetery.

Menso, Not Mensa

A person went into a local convenience store and demanded the money at knifepoint.  But the person's dress....
shows the suspect come in wearing a pillow case on his head, Batman socks on his hands, and plastic bags on his shoes.
This could easily be a woman, but since the report assumes it's a man, I'm going with a male (menso) suspect too.  Anyway, an individual holding up a store with a pillowcase on his head is probably not the most unusual thing ever.  Others have probably used worse things as a disguise.  But the whole ensemble leads me to question the origins of this scheme.

We have a pillowcase, Batman socks, and plastic bags.  I'm thinking it was part of some urban survival challenge where a man was given these three objects and dropped off in unknown territory, letting only instinct drive him forward.  The survivalist saw what he had to work with and it dawned on him:  of course, rob a convenience store!  That has to be the only logical explanation.

Police found the pillowcase and other articles of clothing nearby.  Sloppy work on the part of the thief.  He probably ended up being mauled by a bear in the Zacate Creek.  That's a pity, because pillowcases really come in handy when battling bears.
 

What Could It Be?

A woman assaulted and held another woman against her will.  My question is:  what on earth is she wearing?

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Life Just Gets Better

By the way, the other day I saw an episode of Miami Vice from 1988.

Signs All Around

Do you need a back-hoe?

Tuesday Lunch Thread

Be back later to talk some music.

UPDATE:  Iron Maiden, The Toadies, and John Mellencamp have albums out today.  Today, however, I would have to go with Ray Lamontagne's new release.  Check it out.

The Holy Trinity Speaks

On his wildly popular radio show this morning, Jay St. John, and his cohorts, mocked all I've said about him.  Marissa laughed, Tom said I don't have a clue, and his excellency went so far as to call me a chickenshit. 

And here I thought it was going to be another dull day.

UPDATE:  See link.

Monday, August 16, 2010

Jose Canseco In Laredo

Jose Canseco has landed in Laredo and he'll be making his debut with the Broncos tonight at Veterans Field.

Picture courtesy of KGNS.









UPDATE:  Video courtesy of QueFregados, featured on ESPN.

Cutting Food Stamps

Will it happen again?
Democrats who reluctantly slashed a food stamp program to fund a state aid bill may have to do so again to pay for a top priority of first lady Michelle Obama.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

You're Something Else, Jilly Buck

Guillermina Montes Not Running Again

The LISD trustee wrote a letter to the editor.

I  want to take this opportunity to announce that I will not be seeking re-election at the upcoming LISD District 6 Trustee Election.  I want to thank my constituents in District 6 for your support throughout my seven years as a trustee.

In addition, I want to thank the LISD employees for their continuous support to move our district in the right direction and always looking forward to improve our education standards to prepare our students for the real world.

The citizens have the right to know the truth, and from who else but the news media sources who supported so many of our issues during my tenure as a trustee for seven years by bringing them to light, and thus keeping the wheels of democracy sound and alive.  To all the media sources, I want to express my gratitude for your support.

Choices In The Barrio


El Chacon is getting a touch of color with all the campaign signs going up.  City Councilman Michael Landeck is looking to keep his seat to represent central and southern Laredo.  But his choice of sign design is not really setting him apart from that of his opponent's.  His is red and his opponent's is blue;  I don't know if I should go with the red or the blue at this point.






A third candidate looks like he's going bigger with his run.  Could it be that he wants it more?  I'm thinking of having a sit-down with all three candidates but don't know if it's logistically possible.  If I do meet with all three at the same time, you'll be the first to know.

Political Shenanigans Creep Up

El Manana reports that Laredo political campaigns have officially started playing dirty.

One supporter for a municipal court judge candidate is alleging that an opposing candidate's camp deliberately placed their sign over his candidate's sign. 

Hector Sanchez says that he will look for other instances where this occurred in order to provide further proof and file a complaint with the Webb County Elections Administrator. 

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Gas Station Blogger Strikes Again

I think I have an idea of what this person is referring to:  the three-headed monster (delaRosa, C. Moreno, and Hector Garcia) that's getting support from from former community leaders.  Or it could be something totally unrelated.

It could be a federal level posse who's investigating the district "for alleged wage and hour violations within the child nutrition department."  (Via the LMT - N. Georgiou)

Whatever it is, it's never a dull moment at LISD.

Happy Birthday, Social Security

Henry Cuellar:

“Our nation made a promise to Americans 75 years ago, a promise to compensate a lifetime of hard work and dedication. Together, our nation stood up and said we would protect our elderly and other Americans who deserve financial support,” said Congressman Cuellar. “Since 1935, that promise has been strengthened to protect Americans who have long worked hard. We must not compromise these financial benefits for the more than 3 million seniors and other beneficiaries in Texas. That's why I'll continue to protect this important program and its fiscal solvency for the long-term. By preserving this program and keeping it strong, we ensure future generations can also benefit from Social Security."

Bestest Headline Of The Week

Por Andar De 'Cuete' Debe Pagar 4 Mil Pesos

Translation:  Man drunk, Fine due.
El Manana reports on the 33-year-old that drove drunk and smashed his vehicle into a pole.

Friday, August 13, 2010

They Work Together

But that doesn't mean they see eye to eye.  At a recent council meeting, members discussed budgets.  And when the issue of providing funding for the Laredo Development Foundation came up, things got interesting.  Via the LMT (Zach Lindsey)
Councilman Hector "Tito" Garcia made a motion to cut their funding by 25 percent.
Garcia wanted to see budgets scaled back due to economic hardships felt by all governmental entities.
"We're cutting back, and we're looking at ways to cut back," Garcia said.  "It's going to be a hard year."
Gene Belmares countered.
During tough economic times, the most important focus should be economic development, Belmares said.
Oh, snap!  It was a virtual smackdown at city hall.  I hear it got so heated that Belmares' hair looked ruffled and Garcia's top shirt button came undone.  Oh, wait, that's how they always look. 

As you were.

Promoting Health And Safety

El Manana is reporting that the Webb County Community Coalition wants to petition the president of TAMIU, Ray Keck, to stop the sale of alcoholic beverages on school grounds.  The organization is encouraging the public to take part in the petition.

Those interested in signing the petition can call coalition staff at (956)724-3177.  

It's Not True

Nothing happened.
Baeza says sheriff's deputies talked to ranchers, neighbors, and property owners. "Basically nobody knew what they were talking about," he said.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Lovely

The N Word via Media Matters:

"Have You Had Your Break Today?"

By "break" in this case, I mean mental break or window break.

Here's the video (no sound) recently released of Melodi Dushane in Toledo, Ohio who just had to have her Chicken McNuggets. She didn't care that it was 6:30 in the morning, and the only food McDonald's serves at that time is their breakfast menu. (By the way this happened on New Years Day.)

She loses it and attacks the employees! My favorite part is after the psycho finally leaves: The next car (who waited through all this) pulls up to the shattered window, and one of the workers still hands them their order...wow! That's devotion.

The lady got 60 days in jail, and she had to pay for the damages. Happy New Year!

Please, Please, Please

Let's not turn this site into a destination where people go after one another in the comments section.  Let's leave that for Jay St. John's audience.  And let's not use the word socialism here.  We really don't have an idea what it is.  I for one am not going to take lessons on the subject from Marissa Martinez, Tom Wade or any Fox News personality.  Quite frankly, when I go buy a taco plate at Taco Palenque, I don't get the feeling like this country is spiraling into socialism.

Anyway, yesterday I posted a video of Ben Quayle in which he called Barack Obama the worst president in history.  That's pretty cavalier of him considering Obama is barely coming up on his two-year anniversary.  My little jab at Quayle elicited the usual responses from those on the right.  Now, I don't mind being called a liberal, but if we're going to be shooting down another's beliefs, don't do it with bumper sticker outbursts.

Also, let's not be so quick to point fingers at those who supposedly caused the worst financial crisis in decades.  It's not going to do anybody any good by simply blaming democrats.  Some politicians undoubtedly had a hand in this but we can't leave a ton of other factors out of the debate.  We can't leave out the effect that the price of oil had on our present-day situation; and the dot-com bubble, September 11, the Afghanistan War, the Iraq invasion, subprime loans, Lehman Brothers going bankrupt, Gramm-Leach-Bliley, the Community Reinvestment Act, etc......     It might be too much information to digest on a Laredo blog, but the info is out there for us to make our case stronger. 

I don't mind you criticizing Obama and the democrats.  They are not perfect by any means.  But let's try to take the conversation up a notch. 

Oh, and by the way, Ben Quayle is a fuckin' asshole.  Ya!  I won't say any more.

Sexy Michael Irvin


Who better than the great Michael Irvin to set a new level of classy in accepting entrance into the Football Hall of Fame.

"I remember when I was inducted into the Hall of Fame and they gave me my Hall of Fame yellow blazer. I wore it for two straight days. Finally my wife was in bed and said she wanted to make love but that I had to take the coat off. I refused and kept the blazer on because I wanted to perform like a Hall of Famer on the field and off." [The Chicago Tribune]




Nice. Thanks to Bleacher Report for the find.

Oh Good Gawd!

Texas GOP Vote dispels the rumor of any ranch takeover in Webb County, but adds a little splash to his writing.
City Hall in Laredo has been struck by bullets fired from across the river.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Look-alike?

Every time I see this commercial, I think of Andy Samberg from Saturday Night Live.

I think the female caller puppet looks so much like him.

Hahahahaha

Barack Obama is not perfect.  I certainly don't like the fact that we're still in Iraq and Afghanistan, but to call him the "worst president in history" is ludricous.  And I don't see how you can tie him to drug cartels in Mexico but Ben Quayle doesn't mind doing it.  Of course, he has to throw in the predictable tax jab in his new commercial as well.  Check it out.



Whatever.  Tell us about "The Dirty.com."  Do you have any pointers for us.

Is there a doctor in the house?


There is a Dr. Richard J. Finder who works out of Hollywood, Florida. He is a urologist who also goes by the name Dick Finder.

His name was on a list of funny names, and I was reminded of a classic Seinfeld clip.

Picture of the Weak


First Transit Employees Still Waiting For Answers

El Metro employees who were still paying for insurance benefits they no longer had are still waiting for answers.  City Manager Carlos Villarreal said yesterday that the issue needs to be resolved by First Transit.  Harumf, harumf!!!

83 Days To Go

Election day is near but that's no reason to rush in to debate your opponent.  Just ask Rick Perry.

I for sure can't wait for the local fireworks to begin.
UPDATE:  Don't forget commercials!

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Tuesday Afternoon Thread

Has anybody bought any new music?

Steady rain coming down.  "Heatwave" didn't predict any rain tonight.  Good.

Money Changes Everything

It was not long ago that Webb County and the City of Laredo were at odds with each other over the proposed site of a new international bridge.  Tensions flared and ultimately nothing was accomplished.  Relations improved after we had a changing of the political guards; Cooperation and civility were restored, but not for long.

Bad blood has once again surfaced - this time over the issue of fire protection for county residents.  Those living past the city limits have relied on the services of the Laredo Fire Department, whether its EMS transport to the hospital or fire suppression from the bomberos.  But come October, the city is not going to renew the contract with Webb County, leaving county to fend for itself.  Naturally county officials feel slighted.

Everyone had a say in the matter:  fire department union members cited safety issues, both for themselves and for the citizens of Laredo when coverage for the city was interrupted; city officials noted the cost of providing the services to the county; and commissioners said that contract negotiations weren't brought up until this year.  It all came down to money.  Via the Laredo Times ( Zach Lindsey):
From the city's perspective, the county has "been getting a $37 million fire department at a fraction of the cost,"
The county was paying the city $600,000 a year for its services.  But at a time when budgets are tight, that wasn't going to cut it. 
Now getting back to improved relations, communication was something that was sacrificed for some reason or another.  City officials say that discussions started last year, and county says that they just got word of this this year, but nobody seems to offer up any proof of when exactly the official exchange originated.
"I think the county has known about this for a long time.  This is not something recent.  There has been ongoing discussions even since last year."
(emphasis mine)  I can understand where all parties are coming from but to let something as serious as emergency services reach this point borders on douchebaggery.  (I don't know if that's a word)  Commissioners Court is now scrambling to put together a fire department after knowing that this would happen since last year.  But I'm not sure if they're totally at fault when the city manager says "I think" in reference to the county's knowledge of the situation.  And a union fire official asserted that a pending lawsuit could've allowed them to abandon their responsibility of responding to emergencies, even if the contract was renewed. 

Up to now, we don't know who knew what, and when.  It's all being presented to us as a tale of "he said, she said."  Here I thought we had gotten a collection of political adults but all I see is a bunch of jerks.  Heaven help the residents of Webb County.

Marc Anthony TV alert!

Singer Marc Anthony will appear on the TNT show "HawthoRNe" tonight. Jada Pinkett Smith is the main character on the show which airs Tuesdays at 8p.m. CT.

I haven't really watched the show, but I feel sort of up to date from all TV spots I always get to see. I will watch this episode, and then determine if "valio la pena." (Where's the dance floor?)

The Ranch Story Won't Die


At least a couple of media outlets are reporting that the alleged ranch takeovers that occured late last month have now been confirmed.  As proof, they're including documentation that's described as a police report.

I find it difficult to accept this report as legitimate since it starts off by saying, "Laredo Webb Infored."  And even if law enforcement went out to check the area, there's no mention of a standoff.  They are quick to put up a report, that could be bogus, but not be troubled to verify it with the Laredo Police Dept. 

Pirate v. Ninjas



Personally, I thought it took 3 pirates to take out 1 ninja. Apparently I was wrong, it is the other way around.

Monday, August 9, 2010

The Sign Post Up Ahead

I don't remember this pole holding up any power lines or anything but for some reason it's made its place in an area with a lot of traffic.  I'm almost tempted to put up a "LaSanbe" sign, unless someone knows of a better way to get the word out.

City Hall Tonight

3. Authorizing the City Manager to enter into a Pre-Leasing/Development

Agreement with Ventura-Sports Group-Laredo, Inc., for consultation services
for the design, construction, and development of a baseball stadium and
professional baseball team and further authorizing the City Manager to sign
all relevant documents, subject to appropriation of funding.

4. Authorizing the City Manager to enter into a Non-Competition Agreement with
Ventura Sports Group-Laredo, Inc., (including Laredo Baseball Investors,
L.L.C.) limiting the parties from competing with each other on the proposed
professional baseball team and the proposed baseball stadium.

5. Authorizing the City Manager to enter into an Operations/Lease Agreement
with Laredo Baseball Investors, L.L.C. (Ventura Sports Group-Laredo, Inc.,
Manager) for the operations and lease of the proposed baseball stadium, the
establishment of a professional baseball team and further authorizing the City
Manager to sign all relevant documents, subject to appropriation of funding.

It looks like the end of the Laredo Broncos is near, but they're asking for your help.

UPDATE:

August 9, 2010

STATEMENT FROM THE LAREDO BRONCOS

The Laredo Broncos are disappointed with today's budget approval vote given to Ventura Group to operate in the new baseball stadium. 

The Laredo Broncos are proud of the 5 years that we have operated at a stadium which many consider to be outdated, but we were anxious to get baseball back in Laredo after a decade without America's pastime, so we put our heads down and resurrected the life of pro baseball, working hard with the hopes of a new stadium that we were instrumental in pitching for and ultimately the taxpayers voted for in approval. 

It's been hard to operate out of Veterans Field, but we never complained, the Broncos continue to strive to put the best product available with the limited resources Veterans Field can provide a modern day  minor league baseball operation. 

Through the years, our loyal fans is what kept us going, year in and year out. 

We have 11 games left in the 2010 season, 8 games starting August 11th, we urge fans to come out for the last 11 games and pack the place and send a message to the city council that you support the Laredo Broncos.

Like the Broncos teams of the last 5 years, we fight for every inch, until the very last out. 

While we are down and out right now in the political scoreboard, the game is not over and it's now your turn to bat........What are you going to do?

Play Ball !

- The Laredo Broncos Organization