Saturday, May 28, 2016

Donald Trump Locovision Interview About Vice Presidential Running Mate Kim Jong-Un

New G.O.P. Tandem Heads into November Election with Slight Lead in Polls

Always eager for media coverage, Donald Trump sat down this morning with popular Locovision reporter Jorge Estefan-Apolis to explain his recent selection of North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un as his Vice Presidential running mate:

Jorge:  Mr. Trump, what was the thought process in deciding on Kim Jong-Un as your running mate?

Trump:  First of all, I like the guy.  He speaks his mind, doesn't care about political correctness.  He has the leaders of China, Japan and South Korea totally rattled.  If you know anything about business, you realize that having your competitors a bit rattled is a good thing.

Jorge:  Does Kim Jong-Un even qualify to be Vice-President?  Is he even a citizen of the United States?

Trump:  I believe so.  I have people working on this.  I know he has an aunt, Ko Yung Suk, who runs a dry cleaners in this country.  At least he's not a Muslim from Kenya like President Obama.  

Jorge:  With all due respect, how is it possible that Kim Jong-Un could fulfill the Office of Vice-President while running North Korea?

Trump:  And you consider yourself in the media?  Have you never heard of Skype?  The Senate typically convenes at 8:30 AM Eastern Time.  That would be 9:00 PM in Pyongyang, the capital of North Korea.  Kim would be relaxing at the presidential palace, free from his daily duties.  It's perfect.  He could serve as President of the U.S. Senate via Skype.  He could listen to the dialogue and break any ties with an electronic gavel.

Jorge:  Please describe the process in reaching out to Kim Jong-un.

Trump:  As most people know, I'm a huge NBA fan.  My friend, Dennis Rodman, told me about Kim Jong-un, that we shared much of the methodology I've learned in the business world.  Dennis simply said:  "I know you two will hit it off" and gave me the man's residential phone number.  Kim and I talked far into the night about the world scene, what works and what doesn't work in governing and how hateful the media has become. Before the night was over, I just blurted it out: "Would you consider being my VP?  I told him not to answer right now, but call me back in a couple days."

Jorge:  This is beyond interesting.  He obviously called you back, but what did he say?

Trump:  All I can say is that he agreed to run with me on one condition.  He wants an NBA franchise in Pyongyang by 2018.  I said "no problem," but that, normally, at least two franchises would need to be awarded in the far east to justify the travel.  He suggested Ho Chi Minh City in Viet Nam.  We will have to negotiate a deal between Adam Silver of the NBA and the Communists, but as I told Kim:  "The Communists love me."

Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Borderland Beat~El Chapo Threatens to Sue Netflix/Univision to Get Paid for his Life Story

Lucio R. Borderland Beat

One would think Joaquin Guzman Loera, aka “El Chapo”, has bigger fish to fry without worrying what Netflix and Univision are doing, but today his attorney Andres Granados reported to The Associated Press, that if the studios film and air the planned series of Chapo’s life…they will be sued.

It is not that he is opposed to such a project, he just wants his piece of the pie. He has even offered his services, where for the “right price” he would be willing to assist by providing information that could “make the project better.”

Chapo’s attorney says the networks must pay to use his name and nickname, "If they air this, they are immediately going to be sued.” His contention is that permission must be obtained from Chapo, because he is not dead.

However, they are “willing to, and it would be a pleasure to, negotiate with them (Netflix and Univision).”

You may recall that Chapo signed exclusive rights to his life story to Kate del Castillo, Chapo’s attorney says, that Castillo would also negotiate with them.

If he is successful in getting paid, it is ironic it will be the first time he has earned legit money not procured through organized crime activities. Albeit, it would be legit money from a project highlighting his illegal activities.

Neither Netflix or Univision has rendered a comment.

Drama has surrounded the leader of the Sinaloa Cartel, since his recapture last July. It was shortly after the arrest that his family and attorneys began a campaign on his behalf of several grievances. His wife, who until now has rarely been seen, began a PR onslaught which included dozens of interviews, some televised.

The initial theme was the great concern for Chapo’s health. That his human rights were being violated at Altiplano Prison, and his treatment, for example, waking him up from sleep every few hours, had led to never before experienced health issues, such as hypertension.

During that press blitz, Chapo’s wife, Emma, said that Chapo had instructed his attorneys to not fight extradition to the United States, because he felt he would be safer there.

Then on May 7th, Chapo was transferred to Cefereso No. 9 prison in Juarez. Juarez is most likely the last place he would choose to be imprisoned. Not only is it filled with violent enemies, who would love to see Chapo dead, but Juarez prisons are the worst in human rights violations, with hundreds killed and multiple deadly riots each year.

Supposedly, he is isolated from other prisoners, but that has not stopped targeted prisoners from getting killed in the past.

His wife said last week that he is tormented and wishes to return to Altiplano.

However, he has, of course, changed his mind about the extradition. Before the latest transfer, he began fighting it once again.

In other news about the extradition, the United States has quietly dropped murder charges against Chapo in attempts to expedite the transfer.

That is, of course, in Chapo’s favor if he cuts a deal. Despite the fact that he has served time in three prisons, there has never been a conviction against him in Mexico.

Again, a big positive if he plea bargains, in terms of points when determining sentencing.  
He will have no priors.

Tuesday, May 24, 2016

OP 10.33, Carlos Marin Finally Win One as Eddie Trevino Prevails for County Judge; Brownsville Loses

Eddie Trevino 
In a slopfest of two unworthy candidates for County Judge, svelte Eddie Trevino overcame behemoth Dan Sanchez in Cameron County's May 24 runoff election.  

The unethical, eleventh hour endorsement of Trevino by Democrat State Chair Gilberto Hinojosa was not enough to defeat Trevino, who had the backing of the mayor, inexperienced city commission and Carlos Marin's new best friend, Dallas car salesman Mike Hernandez III.  The political amateur from Dallas can finally pop the corks on one of the cases of cheap champagne ordered for his planned victory parties.  

As a local political advocate, rediscovering prayer, explained:  "I prayed for Dan Sanchez to win because he's too dumb to steal."

Carlos Marin Plotting Strategy as Fred Rusteberg Departs
Eddie Trevino, the man who hoodwinked the City of Brownsville into paying real money, $900,000 of hard-earned taxpayer dollars for Carlos Marin's Imagine Brownsville Comprehensive Plan, now sitting on dusty shelves like a not-so-funny comic book, will now assume considerable influence over the development of two of Cameron County's most profitable entities, the Port of Brownsville and the FM 550 industrial corridor.

Hopefully, the bloggers will pay attention to the puppet strings moving Eddie's head and shoulders and the young city commissioners will take a quick course in Political Corruption 101.

Carlos Marin, Brownsville's Most "Misunderstood" Man!

Somber Carlos Marin at Recent Meeting

I'm just a soul whose intentions are good
Oh Lord, please don't let me be misunderstood

"Don't Let Me Be Misunderstood"
by Nina Simone

Sunday, May 22, 2016

All Ed Needs Is An Address and He's Part of the OP 10.33 BISD Slate

Ed's Campaign Sign on 14th Street, Purchased by
Car Salesman Mike Hernandez III
All Laguna Vista resident Ed Rivera has to do is find a girlfriend within the boundaries of the Brownsville Independent School District and he's good to go on Mike Hernandez III's 2016 BISD slate to remove poverty from the city by 2033.  As we all know, several thousand BISD students take a bus downtown each day to return to their homes in Matamoros, Mexico, all with BISD addresses in their paperwork.

It's not too big of a stretch to call Ed Rivera, "Brownsville's Biggest Loser," as blogger Bobby Wightman-Cervantes did, just a few days ago.(We had that designation in our notes, but BWC is just a bit quicker on the trigger.)  Consider this, Rivera, a Harvard grad with a splendid resume', relinquished his spot as a Texas Southmost College trustee, to run for one, then another position on the Brownsville Navigation District, but lost that race by a wide margin despite heavy financing from Dallas car salesman Mike Hernandez III.  He also found his brief service on the Brownsville/South Padre Island Airport Advisory Committee a bit too cumbersome, relinquishing that post.  

Ed Rivera Sharing his Philosophy and Credentials with
Brownsville Observer Publisher Jim Barton
Ed, the frequent flier and world traveler in his business, called in jet-lagged for his final meeting representing the kids of TSC.  Perhaps, "ass-whipped" would have been a more accurate excuse for his absence.

The names EDRIVERA and RAULVILLANUEVA both adorned OP 10.33 advertising signs throughout the county with the space between their first and last names removed, possibly to demonstrate their frugality in apportioning tax dollars at the Brownsville Navigational District. We suspect Mike Hernandez III sells both the HUNDAIELANTRA and the KIASPORTAGE at his Dallas luxury car dealership and knows how to market an economy puddle jumper as a luxurious land yacht.

Friday, May 20, 2016

Should We Vote for Estela Chavez-Vasquez as County Court-At-Law Position 5 Judge?

Former City Commissioner Estela Chavez-Vasquez
There are good judges, eccentric judges, inept judges and corrupt judges.  
Based on what we saw in Estela Chavez-Vasquez's brief tenure as City Commissioner, what we have observed about the nature of her law practice, we're inclined to report that she's not qualified to be County Court-At-Law Judge 5 or any other judge position.

Make no mistake, Estela is not a piece of shit, corrupt politico like Gilberto Hinojosa.  She is, in our estimation a good, young mother.  We observed her perform on the BCIC board, while monitoring her well-behaved children.  We're also impressed with her personable, supportive husband, an optometrist.

But, in her tenure on the City Commission, Mrs. Vasquez was overwhelmed.  Even when she finally started to ask questions, she did not always understand the answers well enough to press the issue.  

Her law career is essentially limited to serving as an ad litem in family court cases, typically representing a child in the foster care system.  Her law office, a remodeled older house, sits directly across the parking lot from family court in Brownsville.  Someone had a brilliant income-producing plan.  

Just below this article is a brief video resume' for Jesus "Chuy" Garcia, Estela's opponent in the County Court-At-Law Position 5 Judge race.

Jesus "Chuy" Garcia for County Court 5 Video(1 minute, 17 seconds)

Thursday, May 19, 2016

Boards Doling Out Taxpayer Dollars to Come Under More Scrutiny

The three musketeers temporarily monitoring the Greater Brownsville Incentives Corporation definitely want out.  

City Commissioner Cesar de Leon unhesitatingly says:  "I will definitely quit this board as soon as it's functioning correctly."

Commissioners Tetreau and Portillo echo that sentiment.  All three commissioners realize that it's actually inappropriate for this board of 5 to be dominated by 3 city commissioners.  The whole concept of separating so-called 4A and 4B funds from the general fund was to remove politics from those projects.  Yet, there is this distinct impression in Brownsville that these two boards, the GBIC and the BCIC, steer, guide and gift taxpayer monies into the hands of individuals, companies and even charities controlled by certain major players in the city.

City Commissioner Cesar de Leon
Agenda item #7 at Thursday evening's GBIC board meeting was aimed precisely exercising greater control over the dispersal of these taxpayers monies, which in recent years have totaled nearly $10,000,000 per annum: Discussion and possible action to appoint a performance committee for the purposes set forth in Paragraph III of the GBIC service contract with BEDC.

De Leon hinted as the board exited for an executive session that if Nena and I could stay around he wanted to show us the finer points of the GBIC contract with BEDC he'd discovered.  

After executive session, the meeting resumed with board president Jessica Tetreau calling for City Auditor Arvin Tucker, Elizabeth Rodriquez and "someone in accounting from UT-RGV" to be named to the performance committee.  

City Commissioner Deborah Portillo
Such a committee will be charged with determining if "nepotism, conflict of interest or lack of ethics" have been involved in dispersing GBIC funds.  

Later, as De Leon shared points from the service contract with us after the meeting, Commissioner Portillo added from over his shoulder:  "Tell them the BCIC will be included in this audit."  

An interesting exchange had occurred earlier, following the reading of the GBIC financial report, not by City Finance Director Lupe Granado, but by an underling sent in his place.  At last months GBIC meeting, Commissioner Tetreau questioned an undefined $417,000 expense.  Before Granado could explain, BEDC President Jason Hilts interupted:  "Oh, that's for trade shows and marketing."

The commissioners were not happy with that explanation and asked for a more detailed accounting.  With Granado a no-show and his assistant unfamiliar with the expenditure, Tetreau again raised the question.  The staffer promised more information would be forthcoming.

"Next month or in a few days?"  asked board member David Betancourt.  The staffer promised he would get the information "in a few days."

"The times, they are a-changing."

Please note: Last month we reported Deborah Portillo was selected GBIC Vice-President. That is incorrect.  Jessica Tetreau was named President, Cesar de Leon, Vice-President and John Cowen, Secretary. 

Ruben Herrera Installed as TSC Trustee

Irv Downing Receives United Brownsville Baton from Outgoing Fred Rusteberg, Vows to "Refocus, Reset" Group

New United Brownsville President Irv Downing
"How many of you have ever run a medley race?" asked newly installed United Brownsville President Irv Downing at a meeting of the United Brownsville Coordinating Board, held at noon Wednesday at IBC Bank's plush meeting room?  When no hands from among coordinating board members shot up, Downing continued his analogy, explaining that each runner ran a different leg in a medley.  "Fred Rusteberg(newly retired IBC Bank President) has just run the longest leg, just as I did for my high school track team."

During Downing's pep talk, outgoing leader Rusteberg handed him a brass-colored baton, admonishing him "not to drop it."  Ceremoniously, the baton was passed to the other two newly installed tri-chairs, Debbie Portillo and Jorge de la Garza.  Neither officer dropped the baton.

Downing continued: "Some on this board are not certain of our mission.  United Brownsville has never paved a single street.  Our role as facilitators is to bring segments of the community together. We seek collaborative strategy, collective success."

Skillfully bringing board member Minerva Pena into the discussion, Downing asked:  "How long had it been since we collaborated with BISD, 6 years?"

"12 years," responded Mrs. Pena, who articulates a couple pay grades below Downing.

"You see?" Downing continued.  "Too long!"

Outgoing UB President Fred Rusteberg
Downing referred to a study done by Stanford University on the "collective impact of backbone organizations. "Traci has provided us each with some handouts on this study."  United Way Director of South Cameron County Traci Wickett was named the new secretary of United Brownsville and City of Brownsville's Finance Director Lupe Granado was named treasurer.

As Downing reiterated the accomplishments of United Brownsville since it's startup in 2010, incredibly including "the emergence of Texas Southmost College as a free-standing, fully accredited community college. Back in 2010 we had a partnership."  

None on the coordinating board seemed to wince at that revisionist history. Actually, one of the original UB tri-chairs, former UTB President Juliet Garcia, fought vehemently against TSC "separation" from the system agreement into its historical role as a "free-standing" entity. 

Downing did not explain that, in reality, United Brownsville is an imaginary board, with its board members not appointed by the city commission, but chosen by the board itself and certainly not elected by the taxpayers.  Still, the board draws taxpayer and ratepayer funds from 8 local entities to provide its $200,000 annual operating funds.  In other words, "taxation without representation."

Carlos "Viva Las Vegas!" Marin
Another one of the original tri-chairs, Ambiotec's Carlos Marin, arrived late, and did not take his normal spot at the horseshoe-arranged tables, sitting instead in one of the visitor chairs.  Marin, noticeably jet-lagged, was reported by El Rrun Rrun's Juan Montoya as spending some time recently on a gambling hiatus in Las Vegas. 

Downing, who mentioned that he works for a "regional educational institution," admonished the coordinating board to not be afraid of "thinking regionally."  He gave the board "at the very most" 90 days to identify at least three "major initiatives," several times cautioning against "working in silos." has this to say about "silo mentality:"   A mind-set present in some companies when certain departments or sectors do not wish to share information with others in the same company. This type of mentality will reduce the efficiency of the overall operation, reduce morale, and may contribute to the demise of a productive company culture.

Mayor Tony Martinez, addressing the group from a visitor's chair, told the board to keep their spirit's up, claiming that some in McAllen were astonished by "all that Brownsville is doing."

Wednesday, May 18, 2016

Texas Southmost College Board Meeting Photo Montage

Is Mark Sossi On the Way Out At the Greater Brownsville Incentives Corporation?

Mark Sossi Caricature
Mark Sossi may soon have more time to work on the ethics code he was commissioned to compose five years ago. Here is our report from 2012:

Back on April 19, 2011 at the UTB/TSC Mayor Candidates Forum, Tony Martinez clearly identified the drafting of a new ethics code as the "top priority" of a Martinez administration. Since Tony said so little of substance during the campaign, I jotted that down. Assuming a strong work ethic, coupled with a desire to get our city functioning efficiently and ethically, some of us fully expected Tony to be a man of his word. Literally dozens of model city ethics codes exist on the internet and from other sources that could be tweaked to fit our city. Certainly other Texas cities have codes that could be tailored for Brownsville. We reported in August: 'City Attorney Mark Sossi was handpicked by Mayor Martinez to initiate the process. Sossi reported to the commission 7/19/11 concerning the research, thought process and focus so far which amounted essentially to having read the San Antonio and Dallas codes, a 20 minute effort at best. Later in that meeting Mayor Martinez expressed his desire to be included in the committee to draft the code. My recollection is that City Manager Charlie Cabler would be included in that committee along with a commissioner or two.'"

Finally, Sossi may find the time to finish his ethics code assignment.  A knowledgeable source has indicated that the city attorney may lose his job as the Greater Brownsville Incentives Corporation's legal advisor, a part-time position that currently pays Sossi $5,000 per month.  The thought process explained to us is that Sossi is not able to perform all his duties for the City of Brownsville and needs to relinquish this additional part-time gig.

Meanwhile, a settlement in the Sossi vs Montoya defamation case has been reported.  Likely, confidentiality agreements prevent the release of the settlement's details, but, the next time I see Montoya, I'm hitting him up for a Bud Light.

Tobias Harris, Ed Rivera: Two Very Different Approaches to Commitment

Tobias Harris, 23, was traded Tuesday from the Orlando Magic to the Detroit Pistons.  That happens in the NBA. Noteworthy, though, was the fact that, despite being traded to another team, young Tobias honored a commitment to speak to a youth group in Orlando. Dressed in street clothes, as he could no longer represent the Magic, Tobias fulfilled his promise to the kids.

In a bit of contrast, Ed Rivera, was widely accepted on the local scene as someone committed to community service.  A native of Brownsville with a fabulous education and work resume',  Ed committed himself to service on the Airport Advisory Board as well as serving as a TSC trustee.  

Ed Rivera with Brownsville Observer Publisher
In short order, Ed begged off of the Airport Advisory, and eventually chose not to run again as TSC trustee. Like a college student, constantly changing his major, Ed decided to run instead for the Brownsville Navigational District, first for one position, then another, finally hitching a ride on the proverbial Titanic of OP 10.33, a slate of candidates supported monetarily by an out-of-town car salesman.  Ed lost badly as did all of the slate of candidates supported by Mike Hernandez III.(Trey Mendez also received money from the car dealer, after Hernandez was informed his original candidate, Beatriz Hockaday had no chance against Mendez.)

Unlike young NBA player Tobias Harris, Ed has not even honored his commitment to the students of TSC.  He was a no show for this evening's TSC board meeting and the swearing in of Trey Mendez and new trustee Ruben Herrera.

We expected more from Ed.

Carlos Cascos Introduces Trey Mendez, Administers Oath of Office

Tuesday, May 17, 2016

Tad Hasse Back in Town After Chartering Bus to Dallas for Texas State Republican Convention

World's Largest Cruise Ship, Harmony of the Seas
For many of us, an idyllic sojourn on the world's largest cruise ship, Harmony of the Seas, would be the ultimate vacation.  We're talking 6,000 passengers, 2,800 crew, 40 restaurants and robotic mixologists.  Of course, there's always Yellowstone or Yosemite National Parks or the historic Eureka Springs in northwest Arkansas.

Local political advocate and information technologist Tad Hasse marches to a decidedly different drummer.  Tad's idea of a getaway is chartering a bus to the Texas Republican Convention in Big D, picking up a delegation of Willacy County Republicans on the way.  

We've scheduled an appointment with Tad for a blow-by-blow report, but will publish a few just released pics from his recent trip while awaiting the full story.
Tad Steadying the Republican Ark as a Poll Watcher
Brownsville's Maggie Ozuna Posing with Former Republican President Abraham Lincoln
Governor Abbott on Stage
Ted Cruz Holds Delegates Spellbound Awaiting Release

Reader Reports on Tragic Mass Exodus of Barnard Street Area Ducks after City Builds Observation Deck in Former Habitat

Homo Sapiens Congregate on Observation Deck Built Over Former Duck Habitat

From the Editor:  After our recent article on the effect of the Barnard Street Duck Pond observation deck on the ducks who used to reside peacefully in the habitat, we received a comment from a resident living just a block away from the new construction.  We reprint that report below:  

"I live a block away from the resaca (or pond, if you believe the City). 

Ask the people that live in the neighborhood, and they will tell you that the ducks have been displaced. 

They have migrated to the lawns of the homes in the surrounding area. That, itself, is not a problem, except that several of the ducks have been mauled by dogs in the area and/or hit by cars as they cross the streets in the surrounding neighborhood. The duck population is shrinking. 

Perhaps the City should have paid someone to determine what would be best for the ducks. Or perhaps, the City can just change the name of the project to the "Barnard Street (Road?) People Pond" instead of the Duck Pond. At least the name "People Pond" would better represent who the project is meant to benefit.

The only upside here is that the area will soon fall into disrepair and the City will not lift a finger to maintain it. Once the weeds and grass overtake the area, the ducks should return to their home."

Monday, May 16, 2016

Cameron County Republican Chair Morgan Graham Serves as National Delegate for Donald Trump

Morgan Graham Speaking at Brownsville Republican Club
From the editor:  District 34 has three delegates and three alternates that will represent the State of Texas at the Republican National Convention in Cleveland, Ohio:

Elected from Congressional District 34 to serve as National Delegates are as follows with Alternates. We are bound to the candidates unless delegates are released.

Dr. Rey Gonzalez - Cruz (D)
Pastor Brad Burkes - Cruz (D)
Morgan Graham - Trump (D)
Matthew Walbeck - Cruz (A)
Mike Magee - Cruz (A)
Jeneria Lewis - Trump (A)

Rene Torres Deserves Recognition, But It Shouldn't Be Self-Promoted

My old elementary school, Henry Ford Grade School in Renton, Washington was one of many schools, built in the 1920's that were named after the auto tycoon. Henry Ford had already donated money to schools named after him and my birth town tried to get on the bandwagon, but never got a penny from Mr. Ford despite wasting the name of a school on him. Poetic justice.

Former TSC Trustee Rene Torres
I only cite this snippet from my background to illustrate the bogus nature of naming buildings. Admittedly, ulterior motives, political preferences and family ties play a keen role in many naming ceremonies.

Sometimes the building names just make you wince; Juliet V. Garcia Middle School, Aurora de la Garza, Joe Rivera County Annex.

It saddened me somewhat, hearing that my friend, former TSC Trustee Rene Torres, was promoting himself to be the designated name on TSC's R.E.K. building.  Rene has personally chronicled many aspects of Brownsville history, including his stunningly interwoven dissertation on the history of baseball, Brownsville and the Civil War presented five years ago at the Brownsville Historical Museum.

Torres has been the one repeatedly submitting to this blog historical articles, photos and memorabilia, always asking that his personal name not be used.  That sort of humility seems contradicted by pushing, now at least twice, for his name to be placed on a TSC building.

Below are the TSC charter requirements for naming a building: 

2. Naming of Buildings and Other Facilities a. College buildings and facilities should be named with the objective of honoring persons who have made notable contributions in personal effort and/or resources to the College District community. b. No person will be selected to be honored sooner than three (3) years following his/her demise. c. When construction of a building is planned or for naming current buildings and facilities, selection of a person to be honored by the naming may include the following steps: 1) The Chair of the Board will establish a selection committee of the Board which will: a) Investigate nominees to determine compliance with criteria. b) Report the nominee(s), if any, to the Board for their consideration. 2) The Board of Trustees may take action, at a regular Board meeting, by passing a resolution naming the buildings and/or facilities. 3) The Board may also name buildings and facilities under special circumstances. 4) Persons wishing to nominate an individual(s) should do so in writing to the Secretary of the Board. 

Sunday, May 15, 2016

Are the Ducks Unhappy with Habitat Changes at Barnard Street Duck Pond Park?

Ribbon Cutting at Barnard Street Duck Pond Park
The newly contructed gazebo at Barnard Street Duck Pond Park allows humans the opportunity to observe, in relative comfort, the wildlife, including ducks that are known to frequent the area.  Nicely crafted wooden benches provide seating, while wooden railing ensures safety, for those on the observing deck.

Perhaps forgotten in all the construction work done by the City of Brownsville, orchestrated by the Brownsville Beautification Committee, are the ducks and other creatures known to populate the area.

That is the subject of a Letter to the Editor of the Brownsville Herald from Irma Barrientes Sherman.  Mrs. Sherman feels that the "numerous animals making there home there" are now leaving the resaca in search of a more favorable habitat.

Sherman states:  "As I was driving by the area one recent morning, I noticed a few ducks wandering aimlessly along the streets.  It seems as though the ducks were looking for a safe place to sit and rest."

Unhappy Ducks?
Mrs. Sherman continues:  "I do know that the birds have been venturing farther away from the water than before.  In fact, one day my husband had to remove a nest hidden on our home's roof more than a block away from this resaca.  This duck in question must have felt very comfortable about this newfound safe haven because it keeps coming back every day."

We make no claim of understanding duck psyche, but, nevertheless, find that Mrs. Sherman provides a different perspective.  Obviously, Joe Lee Rubio and the beautification committee did a lot of fine work at the resaca.  Hopefully, the ducks will adjust.

Mrs. Sherman ends her letter with a suggestion that the city "prioritize their projects" with more focus on the multitudes of pot holes in the city or, as she states, "get one's ducks in a row."  

Friday, May 13, 2016

Graphic Showing Eddie Trevino Public Utility Board Ratepayer Legal Fees Received Since 2013

Reprint of Our 9/21/15 Article on Sam Marasco's Proposal to the GBIC to Promote North Brownsville Industrial Park

John Villarreal, Sam Marasco,  Jason Hilts
The North Brownsville Industrial Park, $4.2 million spent, 73 acres, 11 sites with full utilities, last saw action at its ribbon-cutting four years ago. It sits idle, unused, unwanted, another GBIC failure reminiscent of Titan Tire. Knowledgeable truckers, either loading or unloading in Brownsville, frequent it as a free overnight stop, before moving on down the road.

Enter Sam Marasco of LandGrant Development, a lawyer with a lapsed law license, but a ton of real estate experience and tangible results in large scale commercial real estate projects on the border with $400,000,000 capitalization, introduced by BEDC Director Jason Hilts during Agenda item #3 at Monday's GBIC Board Meeting.

GBIC Board Meeting, 9/21/2015
Marasco, said to already be working on a downtown mall in Brownsville, is intrigued by the industrial park. He wants assurance from the GBIC, that if he spends time and money attracting vendors, doing a feasibility study, he will be given "exclusivity and confidentiality" until he and the board can agree on a contract to move forward.

Las Americas Outlet Mall, San Ysidro, CA

Ahumada's Letter to "El Rrun Rrun" Editor Details Carlos Marin and Mike Hernandez III Project

From the editor:  The letter below, from former Mayor Pat Ahumada, posted on El Rrun Rrun this morning, provides even more insight into behind-the-scenes efforts by Mike Hernandez III and Matamoros millionaire Carlos Marin.

 Blogger Pat Ahumada said...

Months back, Mike Hernandez approached me
through Robert Sanchez with the pitch that he wanted to help Brownsville create jobs and provide educational opportunities to the citizens of Brownsville. 

I was asked to set up meetings with key people in my network, which I did and it sound good. I provided a lot of information and material, including my entire file on the weir project to Mike Hernandez and the names of the California group with Sam Marrasco to develop downtown.

Then I realized that I had been used. It became apparent Mike Hdz made an alliance with Carlos Marin and that is when I jumped ship. They tried to hire me as a consultant, but I said no. 

Now they talk about those things I worked on and would like to see brought to fruition, but they do not understand that it was the same people Mike Hdz aligned himself with who was working to undermine the weir project. 

I expect them to mile our city like Marin has done with the Tenaska project, Imagine.United Brownsville, and anything they can get their hooks into. 

The good thing is that finally citizens have opened up their eyes to know that special interest has been steadily working to take control of all our elected and appointed boards. 

I was the first one to stand up to them and the first casualty for saying no. I warned everyone, but got no support and was labeled as being difficult by Atkinson and those who supported Carlos Marin and his Imagine Brownsville. 

Because people stood on the sidelines and watched them pound on me, now Carlos Marin has come back to haunt the same people who stood on the sidelines allowing special interest to get powerful. 

Much irreparable damage has been done with the border wall going up with the help of Troiani and the others on the commission with the intent to undermine weir and the river walk proposed downtown development. 

In spite of ourselves, good things do happen and I hope that somehow this initiative of mine some day becomes a reality. It is feasible, as we were able to get the weir project approved as a bi-national project, when before it was never a bi-national project and millions had already been spent. It was like the bridge to nowhere project wit no bi-national status.

Wednesday, May 11, 2016

Eddie Trevino vs Dan Sanchez for County Judge~The Undercurrents Beneath the Surface

Dan Sanchez at Valley Interfaith Accountability Session
with Eddie Trevino Looking On
Unless Dallas douchebag Mike Hernandez III simply craves rejection, we may not see his philanthropic ass in Brownsville anytime soon. 
In a perverse way, Hernandez gave us a sort of a city-wide ego boost.   How often does a player from Big D show himself to be more amateurish than our own amateurs? Brownsville is in full  party mode, drinking Bud Light and shooting pistols in the air, after kicking OP 10.33 ass in the TSC and BND elections.  Give us another grito, Ralph!

Now, it's down to Dan Sanchez vs Eddie Trevino for County Judge.  Governor Abbott is not inclined to appoint either one Secretary of State, giving us our old guy back.  Actually, the State of Texas is onto us after we tricked them into taking Gilberto Hinojosa off our hands as State Democratic Chair or something.  "Not funny, Brownsville!"

Eddie Trevino Politicizes West Trail Public Meeting
Eugene Novodrosky opposes the West Rail Road, just as he opposed the West Rail Toll Road and the Pony Express Trail West before that, but the two currently in the ring on this issue are Eddie Trevino and Dan Sanchez.  Both men desire to use this issue for political advantage in their run for County Judge. Inexplicably, Eddie was given the microphone at the town hall on the West Rail Trail to give his political stump speech.

Dan Sanchez, easily twice the politician of Eddie Trevino,  has since softened his position on the West Rail Trail, now willing to listen to the people.  LOL!  Please forget what he told the Brownsville Herald two months ago:

“I understand 5,000 residents want a trail, but what about everyone else that needs access in and out of Brownsville? As county judge, you have to think globally about the entire region,” Sanchez said. “If we focus on one little area, then we’ve lost our job and focus as county leader.”

Mayor Tony Martinez supports Eddie Trevino for County Judge which puts him at odds with the other mayors in Cameron County.  Tony claims that Trevino also has the support of Matamoros Mayor Leticia Salazar.(Actually, she's not the mayor, but Presidenta Municipal. Another noticeable inclusion in the list of Cameron County mayors is Ricardo Longoria, Jr., who qualifies by the ad writer for this distinction because of his infrequent service as Mayor Pro-Tem)


Self-Portrait by Josie del Castillo