Monday, May 21, 2018

DISTRICT 37 IS NOT RENE'S ATM: VOTE 4 CHANGE, VOTE ALEX.


OLIVEIRA: PROMISE THEM THE WORLD, AND GIVE THEM LNGs

By Juan Montoya

Patrick Anderson, who has made a run for a seat at the Brownsville Navigation District Commission has been promised that he'll get District 37 State Rep. Rene Oliveira's support when he runs again in two years.

You know Anderson. He is the pro-environment teacher from Los Fresnos ISD who has been the poorest vote drawer the two times he has run for the port.

The Anti-LNG crowd– John Young, etc., – have been promised Oliveira will introduce legislation to keep away LNGs from the Port of Brownsville. Oh, sure. He'll introduce a bill and it won't even make it out of committee. But it will pacify them enough to get another two years.

And they are willing to overlook the fact that of the two candidates running for the office – Rene and Cameron County Pct. 2 commissioner Alex Dominguez – only Rene has taken money from Annova LNG's parent corporation, Excelon.



The Sierra Club has vigorously asserted that the terminals cannot be "constructed and operated in a safe and responsible manner..," quite in opposition to Oliveira's claim to the FERC.

He wrote the energy commission that he is "confident that the project will be constructed and operated in a safe, environmentally responsible manner to the benefit of the citizens of South Texas..."

And various coastal and seashore communities and entities have come out against the terminals such as the South Padre Island city council, the Point Isabel Independent School District, the Laguna Madre Water District, the Port Isabel city commission, and the Laguna Vista town council.

Yet, Oliveria told the Valley Morning Star that:

“As a longtime legislator from the Brownsville area, I can assure you that the project has strong support from the local community and its leaders,” wrote Oliveira, chairman for the House committee on business and industry."

In fact, if it hadn't been for Oliveira, the LNGs may not have even come here. He was the state rep who wrote a letter o support to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission saying he was satisfied that they were safe and benign to the environment. And would you believe that the Sierra Club Lone Star Chapter gave him a 100 percent rating?

To make sure they stay, Oliveira introduced a bill allowing navigation districts like the BND to extend the leases from 30 to 50 years in 2015. After that, the money from gas and oil PACs, including Excelon, Annova LNG's owner, started to pour in.

Oh, by the way, he has also "promised" that this will be the last two-year term he wants to serve. Is there an echo in this district? Even we have been told that many bienniums ago. What would he do? Rest assured that he will die in office and they will have to pry the list of campaign contributions from his stiff, cold fingers.

But the list of luminaries – according to a local scurrilous blog – is growing in support of the 34-year barnacle of the Texas Leg.

Among them:
Patrick Anderson
John Young
Save RGV From LNG(?)
Jerry McHale
Bobby Wightman
DPM (Da Pendejita @ Macalitos)
Jim Barton
Et al.,
Image result for rene oliveira
The fact that he got loaded, crashed into the rear of a car driven by a woman who had a child in the back seat, left the scene of the accident, had his live-in mate tell the police there had been no accident, and then couldn't stand up without assistance from a police woman doesn't seem to matter to them.

What if it had been your wife or your daughter driving and your child or grandchild sitting in the back seat of the car he slammed into in his drunken blindness?

We're all human right? Or as that perennial loser and dinosaur City of Brownsville commissioner Ernesto de Leon would say, "Pobrecito. Pero es muy buena gente."

Well, but Rene is from Brownsville and Dominguez grew up in La Feria. So?
Carlos Cascos was from Matamoros and no one brought that up. What about Jerry McHale? He's from Salinas, California and Tony Gray, Rene's Admin Asst. is from Omaha, Nebraska. Even the Brownsville Republic "publisher" lives in McAllen.

By that measure, Dominguez is the kid next door. What a crock.

Zeke Silva is staying in Brownsville tending to his family and business. In fact, he is too worried about his elderly mom's health to contemplate moving anywhere. He wants nothing to do with living in Austin. That's another red herring thrown out by the Oliveira shills. 

In the final analysis, it won't be up to any of us to decide who wins between Oliveira and Dominguez. It'll be up to the voters of District 37 who will decide who they want to represent them for the next two years. If they elect Oliveira again, they'll get more of the same and won't have anyone to blame but themselves.

Sunday, May 20, 2018

VALADEZ, CASCOS' ADMIN ASST: $500 T0 PUT UP SIGNS 4 RENE

By Juan Montoya                                                    

How long has Cris Valadez, the administrative assistant for former GOP Texas Secretary of State and former Cameron County Judge Carlos Cascos, been flying under the radar supporting Democratic State Rep. Rene Oliveira against challenger Cameron County Pct. 2 commissioner Alex Dominguez?


It's hard to tell how long Valadez – who also goes by the name of his alter ego also called Maclovio O'Malley on Jerry McHale's blog – has been on the take, but this time the Oliveira campaign felt obligated to list him on their campaign expenditure report. (Click on graphic to enlarge.)

(That's Valadez joshing with convicted former Cameron County District Attorney Armando Villalobos, one of his most notable guests on his radio show before Mando was sentenced to 7 years in prison for bribery and corruption.)

But does anyone really believe that Cris would submit to the pedestrian task of taking poseras out in the South Texas sun and installing Rene's campaign signs as is stated on the campaign report? On the day of the $500 expenditure, the U.S. Weather Service says the temperature reached 88 degrees. Add the humidity and we get a heat index past the mid 90s.

His dermatologist would be the first to object, we're sure.

Of course, the runoff between Oliveira and Dominguez is among both Democrats with no Republican candidate in the general election in November.

So Cascos can honestly say que no tiene vela en este velorio.

But the fact that Valadez is closely associated with the former county judge and current Republican candidate for county judge in November against Eddie Treviño may result in some negative consequences for Cascos from those traditional Democratic voters who crossed over in his past races to support him.

In fact, someone pointed out that it was Valadez who was egging former county judge candidate Robert Sanchez to run against Treviño and to publicly engage Oliveira in Austin. Did Sanchez know Cris would side with Oliveira in the end?

There were 3,295 votes cast for challengers Dominguez and Arturo Alonso against 3,096 for Oliveria in the primary in March. The Cascos formula is to get at least 22 percent of the Democratic vote to win in November. But it is not a given that all the Democrats who vote for Oliveira will cross party lines to vote for Cascos.

The voters who support Dominguez (all Democrats) will probably not be pleased to know Cascos' allowed his assistant to work for Oliveira against their guy.

The address on the campaign report lists Valadez's address as 630 E. Price. That's the address for St. Joseph's Water, the Valadez's family business.

As they say, politics makes strange bedfellows. In this case, no one believed that Valadez was playing under the sheets with Rene. Go figure.

LA BABOSA SAYS WE'RE THE BEST SHOW? HOW ABOUT HIM?

By Juan Montoya
Eight years ago, Chase Bank sent a large mailing to potential customers who might want to apply for a credit card.

Instantly, because one was sent to him and another person who had been target of his lawsuit, disbarred lawyer Robert Wightman's suspicions were roused.
Could it be, he thought, that the Federal Bureau of Investigation, former U.S. Attorney Albert Gonzalez, current U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder, Texas Supreme Court Chief Justice Wallace Jefferson, Texas Gov. Rick Perry, and the FBI Director Robert Mueller, were all trying to entrap him by sending him the application?

But of course, that had to be it.

So Wightman, who has been known to sue people and companies at the drop of a legal pad did what comes naturally to him. He sued them and demanded that the court appoint a special prosecutor to pursue the investigation into who had sent him the credit card application.

In his petition to the court in Wightman vs. Robert Meuller, et al, Civil Action No. 10-00238 (JDB) he requested that the Court order defendants to recuse themselves from a criminal investigation that he sought to open.

Wightman began with accusations that Chief Justice Wallace Jefferson of the Texas Supreme Court "orchestrated an usurping of power" from Texas Governor Rick Perry "with Governor Perry's full consent for the sole purpose of obstructing justice."
Wightman also alleged, among other things, that FBI Director Mueller and former Attorney General Albert Gonzales used the FBI to entrap him on credit card fraud charges in order to silence his criticism of appointments made by former President George W. Bush.

He claimed that the FBI was responsible for a Chase credit card application addressed to him and to a person targeted in a previous lawsuit he filed; he believed that the application is evidence of the FBI's scheme to entrap him on credit card fraud.

Wightman also contended that Mueller could no longer conduct a criminal investigation of Governor Perry and Chief Justice Jefferson because he would implicate himself and his office, and that Attorney General Holder was now involved in the coverup because "President Obama seeks to appoint to federal offices Democrats who have made themselves party to the criminal conduct initiated under the Republicans."

He further argued that the Court's failure to compel the FBI to investigate and indict Governor Perry and every member of the Texas Supreme Court would make other judges "party to the criminal conspiracy started by Governor Perry and the Texas Supreme Court and covered up by FBI Director Mueller."

According to Wightman, the FBI reviewed his claims of public corruption and attempted credit card fraud at his request but declined to investigate further, citing a lack of evidence. He sought declaratory, injunctive, and mandamus relief ordering defendants' recusal from a criminal investigation of Governor Perry and Chief Justice Jefferson and the appointment of an "independent investigator" to pursue the investigation.

The defendants moved to dismiss the complaint pursuant to Rule 12(b)(1) for lack of subject matter jurisdiction. They argued that Wightman-Cervantes's bizarre and implausible factual allegations are not entitled to a presumption of truth, and that his complaint therefore did not raise a federal question and warranted dismissal on jurisdictional grounds.

The court, finding Wightman's claims that a wide-ranging conspiracy involving two administrations and high-ranking state and federal officials that were trying to entrap him baseless, said he did not offer any facts or circumstances to support his claims that defendants "conspired to try and entrap him by having him accept a credit card from Chase," or that they conspired to have him arrested before the hearing for a President Bush appointee. 

In their opinion, they said his factual allegations were conclusory and unsupported, representing the type of "bizarre conspiracy theories" and "wholly insubstantial" claims contemplated by the D.C. Circuit and others that had dismissed similar claims.

The court said that even though it recognized that pro-se litigants are "generally entitled to the benefit of less stringent review than those applied to attorneys, in fact, Wightman was a disbarred attorney who "is presumed to have a knowledge of the legal system and needed less protections from the court."

The court found that Wightman had failed to show that he had a right to the appointment of a special prosecutor or that the FBI, defendants, or any other government official or agency owe him a duty to investigate the alleged criminal conduct. 

The Court concluded that Wightman had failed to satisfy his burden and demonstrate that he was entitled to mandamus relief, and his request for a writ of mandamus was also denied.

And two Cameron County JPs allowed this guy to represent someone in their courts? (That's Wightman in diapers with Bugs Bunny.)

 This county is going to hell in hand basket and this case is one of the looniest tunes we've encountered.

 

A HERMAPHRODITE'S TALE ON THE SEXUAL AND SOCIAL FRINGE

By Juan Montoya
When she was born, Cynthia's (not her real name) parents in a poor colonia near Tampico, Tamaulipas, were amazed and distraught.

They found out that she was both a girl and a boy. Unlike the rest of her brothers and sisters, she had both male and female genitalia. Her parents and relatives, unable to cope with this unusual biological (but natural, if rare) manifestation, thought they had been punished for some sin. Intersex births were not common, and the priest at the local church who baptized her didn't help.

"Algún pecado cometieron," they were told, heaping the guilt on thick.

Cynthia exhibited characteristics of a girl and she was raised as one, even though as children, her sisters and brother noticed the difference. She soon took to dressing conservatively and covering her shame to hide it from others.

Her mother as – as was her duty with her other daughters – showed her the ways of the Mexican coastal cuisine. Cindy not only learned how to cook the in the tampiquera style, but took to it with a relish. She learned the art of preparing the succulent coastal dishes and sauces that give the coastal Tamaulipas cuisine its fame. You knew when Cindy was cooking because the smells emanating from her kitchen wafted through the colonia.

"Esta cocinando su Cindy," the people would say to her mother knowingly.

But over time, she took to wearing her hair cut high and tight, like a boy. And men did not interest her. After a while, her family moved to the city where her different outlook did not set her apart as it had done at the rural community where she was ostracized by her peers.

She took to it like a duck to water. Before long, she had struck up relationships with other men and women in the LGBT community there. But regardless of the freedom she found, the crush of the northern Mexico economy also forced her to look north, to the United States, and she left.

As usual, the only opportunities afforded a young girl (as Cindy was considered) in Brownsville were limited to being a domestic worker, or working in a bar. Cindy had been a good student, and, as is usually the case, had been taught mathematics in Mexico's primarias and secundarias to the point where she could solve problems in her head without the aid of calculators or having to write the problem down on paper.

Bar owners rapidly recognized her bookkeeping talents and her ability to do daily inventory and soon she was running the bars for them. Over time, she could just about choose where she wanted to work. This not only gave her a certain independence, but also proved to be a bonus. As the woman in charge of the bar, she could hire and fire other female workers. That power over the purse gave her an edge on women that she was attracted to.

For the most part, the women who sought work in the cantinas were single mothers who had no male provider at home. They were undocumented with U.S.-born children in need of income for rent and other necessities. They desperately needed a job and she could provide that to them, and more, if they wanted.

Some did and before long Cindy truck up amorous relationships with a number of women. She showered them with money for rent, utilities, la parranda, as well as expensive jewelry which she boasted none of their former mates ever gave them.

"When did your old man (tu pinche pelado) every have you decked out in gold," she would confront them when she drank a little too much at the bars. "Never, and you now it."

A ready way to raise cash was to sell dimes of coke and soon she established herself as la jefa del jale on the strip. After a time, she was making more selling pase than she did with her salary. She took to wearing a medallion of La Santisima Muerte and even had an altar to her in her house.

But being a woman, her instincts sometimes betrayed her and she readily grew close to their children and considered them her own. Some women used her sentiments against her to milk her for money, clothes, cars, and just about every whim they had. Some gave her money to their exes behind her back.

But Cindy took all this in stride and floated from flower to flower. She had also developed a sense of perverse humor and bravado that others didn't have. With her copped hair and baggy denim shorts, she was a frequent sight on the beer joints strip.

As the violence in northern Mexico spilled over to the norther side f the Rio Grande, it wasn't long before hangers-on (lambe huevos)of the cartels and Zetas groups started frequenting the obscure beer joints (congales) where Cindy plied her trade. Often they would saunter in and loudly announce their allegiance to this group or the other like the Cartel del Golfo or the Zetas. Cindy knew that if they were really members of those groups, the last thing they wanted was for anyone to know.

So she took their boasting in stride and let it go, except for one time when one of the fake Zeta braggarts was making a move on one of her girls, loudly boasting of his alleged tie to the armed groups in Matamoros.

"Nosotros somos de los Zetas," shouted the drunk. "Por aqui se van todos los putos que no les guste. Ay traigo con que pal que quiera," he told the rest of the bar clients who were enduring his outbursts with growing impatience. (We're with the Zetas no matter who doesn't like it. I got a little friend for whoever wants some.)

After a while Cindy could stand it no longer and went up to the table of the loudmouth and directed her remarks at him.

"Pos aqui no habra Zetas, pero se chingan con nosotros porque si hay Jotas," she said as the bar exploded into laughter and the braggarts face turned red with embarrassment.

DOMINGUEZ SE SACA LA DAGA, APPLIES FOR DIST. 37 JOB


(Ed.'s Note: Since April 28, when the news that his opponent in the runoff election for District 37 State Rep. incumbent Rene Oliveira had caused an accident by slamming into the rear of a car driven by woman with a child in the back seat while obviously drunk made the news, Cameron County Pct. 2 Commissioner Alex Dominguez has not commented on the case.

This has caused Oliveira's supporters and others to chide him for not making it his main campaign issue and hammering him on the head to make political brownie points in the tight runoff election. That changed this Sunday when in the ad above he includes references to the incident in the context of how that DWI charge shows Oliveira's impaired judgment and how it will take time away from him serving the District 37 constituency.

"JUDGMENT: I rarely drink and I don't do drugs," the ad states. "And I know better than to leave the scene of an accident with a woman and her child without giving license and insurance information out of fear of political repercussions.

"RELIABILITY: I think I’ve missed two meetings in four years and one was for my wedding. Next January, I won’t be on DWI probation missing time when reporting to adult probation, coming community service, providing random U/A samples, going to AA meetings, or taking the required DWI classes. I will be in Austin without distractions working on legislation that matters to you."

The turnout in the early vote – 7,889 – was only 1,482 less than than the early vote in the primary in March (9,371) despite the fact that there were only five days in the runoff early voting period compared to 11 in the primary. This shows that in a tight race, the Election Day vote this coming Tuesday might decide the outcome not only in this race, but also of the others on the ballot.

Dominguez concludes: “You have seen both of our resumes and the exaggerations, too. My opponent hasn’t even said that he would change his ways. Give me a chance...I am ready for this job, boss.”

Saturday, May 19, 2018

IN HIS OWN WORDS: WHEN JERRY SEES RENE, HE SEES $$$$$

Special to El Rrun-Rrun
Image result for rene oliveira, texas southmost college
We won't put words in Dr. G.F. Mchale-Scully's mouth since the successful author of several books is far more articulate and erudite than we are.

(Jerry wrote this and admitted saying he believed it would be something Dr. Tony Zavaleta would probably say if he – and not Jerry – had written it. So it wasn't really Tony's. It was Jerry's.)

Plus, it was close to five o'clock in the morning when he wrote it and he was probably nodding out. But we know the manner in which our longtime friend and fellow member of a secret organization perceives reality from our many conversations with him over the last 40 years.

When he sees his pal District 37 State Rep. Rene Oliveria, he makes believe he sees intelligence...but it's really the $2,000 and free pedas.


When he sees Dominguez, the $2,000 blind him and he makes himself believe he sees ignorance.

Image result for rene oliveira and jerry mchale, TSCWhen he sees Oliveira staffer Tony Gray, he sees a selfless individual who has served the district's constituents well and who wines and dines him on the rep's campaign funds when he's in Brownsville and when Jerry visits Austin.

He also tends to forget that it was Juan Montoya (the for hire blogger as Jerry and his friends describe him) who trained Gray in the way of newspapers and who recommended Oliveira hire him as his administrative assistant. He did.

When he sees Dominguez's staffer Zeke Silva, the $2,000 make Jerry sees a selfish individual who has served himself well. He doesn't see anything past the campaign funds funneled to him through the Oliveria campaign. He doesn't see the work Silva has done to help the residents of colonias built by the Cardenas, Rene's compadres, in the flood zones (Laguna Seca), or the work he has done to complete the transformation of Cameron Park to a livable community.

When he sees the Oliveira team, he recognizes they can compete at drinking you under the table with anyone on the field.

When he sees the Dominguez team, he dreads the though of them winning because the drinks and gravy train will shrivel and dry up as will the free good times at Cobbleheads in Brownsville and Eddie V's in  Austin.

When he sees Oliveira, he sees a man who claims 34 years of experience, expertise and achievements have made Brownsville a better place during his time as a state representative. Could this "seniority" be the reason why his district – compared with the other five senior members of the 150th representatives – has the worst family income levels and poverty rates? See for yourself below.


1. Tom Craddick, Amarillo                        $32,938                   10.9 percent in poverty

2. Sephonia Thompson , Houston             $15,742                    27.8 percent in poverty

3. Harold Dutton, Houston,                       $19,867                    24.5 percent in poverty

4. John Smithee, Amarillo,                        $27,603                    12.4 percent in poverty

5. Oliveira, Brownsville (SPI),           $13,416                          39.1 percent in poverty


When he sees Dominguez, the Oliveira $2,000 campaign fund money blinds him to hallucinate he is seeing someone with no expertise and no achievements who hasn't made his precinct better during his time as a county commissioner.

The colonia improvements, inclusive playground for the physically impaired, winter coat drives for the poor, successfully fighting for drinking water for San Pedro, all disappear into the haze of the fine wine he and Oliveira share. And he forgets Oliveira never held a local elective office before he was installed as a state rep by his mother Gloria, a local Democratic Party heavyweight. Peace be with her.

When he sees Oliveira, he envisions Brownsville moving into the future. But not as fast as Oliveria's black Caddy slamming into the back of the woman who was parked at a traffic light that Oliveira's inebriate condition did not allow him to perceive. He'll also make believe that Rene did not leave the scene of the crime, could not remember how his car had suffered all the damage, and had to be held up by a female cop to keep himself from falling.

It wasn't the first woman who has helped Rene out. His current live-in lied to the cops at the scene and told them that there had been "no accident." Before that, Roller Derby Rene's girl friend took the fall when he rear-ended van then left the scene to coordinate his cover from Cheddar's next door. Sound like a pattern?

When Jerry sees Dominguez, Oliveira's $2,000 make him think his hazy crystal ball is showing him an imagine of Brownsville regressing into the past.

When Jerry sees Oliveira, he sees a somebody with a hefty campaign fund which he shares generously with his drinking buddies.

Go to sleep Jerr. Your delirium tremens is our nightmare.

OLIVEIRA: TO US "I'M NOT FOR LNGs!", TO FERC: "YES, I AM."





By Juan Montoya

For months – even years – District 37 Texas Representative Rene Oliveira has had it both ways.

On the one hand, he can say tell the Sierra Club he is a champion of the environment, and on the other he can give a nod and a wink to Big Oil and Gas for the construction of the liquified natural gas (LNGs) terminals at the Port of Brownsville.  

At the same time, he had been pocketing money ($10,000 or more) from the LNGs. Transparent Texas tells the sordid story. Excelon, Annova's parent company, has given him $10,000 since 2015 (Click on graphic to enlarge).

If you question the Excelon-Annova relationship, click on the link below: http://www.gasprocessingnews.com/news/exelon-buys-control-of-annova-lng-project-to-export-us-shale-gas.aspx

As a state representative, he is instrumental in guiding their efforts through the state's economic development bureaurcracy to make sure they get all the financial considerations and incentives they can.

And they have been extremely generous in return, bestowing upon him $100,000s of dollars in gratitude. (See graphic, click to enlarge.)

The letter above clearly shows the tightrope that Oliveira has tried to walk between his constituents who worry the terminals will harm the environment and the industry which finances his lifestyle.

The Sierra Club has vigorously asserted that the terminals cannot be "constructed and operated in a safe and responsible manner..," quite in opposition to Oliveira's claim to the FERC.

He wrote the energy commission that he is "confident that the project will be constructed and operated in a safe, environmentally responsible manner to the benefit of the citizens of South Texas..." 

And various coastal and seashore communities and entities have come out against the terminals such as the South Padre Island city council, the Point Isabel Independent School District, the Laguna Madre Water District, the Port Isabel city commission, and the Laguna Vista town council.

Yet, Oliveria told the Valley Morning Star that:

“As a longtime legislator from the Brownsville area, I can assure you that the project has strong support from the local community and its leaders,” wrote Oliveira, chairman for the House committee on business and industry."

EARLY VOTES INDICATES INTENSE INTEREST IN RUNOFFS

By Juan Montoya
Early vote totals in the Democratic Party runoff races which includes the candidates for governor to face incumbent Greg Abbott show that the results in the local races are tightening up and might come down to the election day turnout.

Compared to the primary turnout for the early vote which lasted 11 days, the five-day runoff early vote totals were almost double the rate.

The Cameron County Elections Dept. posted the totals late Friday and showed that 7,889 early votes were case in the 26 polling places in the five days most were open. That averages 1,577 a day.

 In comparison, 3,843 votes were cast in the first five days of the 11-day period in the primary. The average for the first five days of the 11-day primary period in March was just 768.

The average daily vote in the early voting for the primary (9,371 divided by 11) was just 852 a day, almost half the rate of the runoffs.

The early vote in the March Democratic primary (9,376) was 57 percent of the total 16,435 that included 892 mail-in ballots.

If the rate that the early voting turnout is any indication of how interest in the local races, it may come down to election day turnout to decide the outcome. In the March Democratic primary, 6,167 votes of the 16,435 total were cast on election day, about 37.5 percent.

Except for the Cameron County Judge and the Texas State Board of Education races in November, the winners of the local runoffs will not have a Republican challenger.

It's anybody's race. If ever there was a time when your vote was critical, this is it.

RAMADAN OVER B'VILLE: PEACE BE W/OUR MUSLIM BROTHERS

Ramadan Prayers

Ramadan Prayers


1. The Prayer for Breaking the Fast

One of the first prayers I ever learned was the one all Muslims recite when they break their fast. I was barely four (and of course not fasting) when I learned it. And it was my job at iftaar (the fast-breaking meal at sunset) to recite this out loud, after which the fasting members of my family would break their fast with a date. Fasting does not end unless this prayer is recited:

“Allahuma inni laka sumtu wa bika aamantu wa ‘alayka tawakkaltu wa ‘ala rizq-ika aftarthu.”

Oh Allah! I fasted for You and I believe in You [and I put my trust in You] and I break my fast with your sustenance.”
2. Prayer for Forgiveness

Ramadan is a time when Muslims are told through the Qur’an and in hadiths that God will absolve them of their sins if they engage in sincere worship and repentance. The following prayer is a good one to recite during Ramadan to ask for Allah’s forgiveness:

“Allahumma inni as’aluka birahmatika al-lati wasi’at kulli shay’in an taghfira li.”
Oh Allah, I ask You by Your mercy which envelopes all things, that You forgive me.

This is a prayer that Abdullah ibn Amar, a companion of the Prophet Muhammad, used to recite as he was breaking his fast, as reported by Ibn abi Mulaykah.

3. Prayer for the First 10 Days of Ramadan

Muslims scholars agree that Ramadan is such a holy month that any sort of prayer, whether it is a personal one from your heart or one from the Qur’an or other Islamic sacred texts, will surely be received by Allah and the rewards for those prayers will be numerous. But the Prophet Muhammad did recommend Muslims to recite certain du’as at particular times during Ramadan. For example, during the first 10 days of the months, reciting the following prayer provides extra benefits:

“Rabbigh fir war hum wa anta khair ur rahimeen.”

Oh my Lord and Sustainer please forgive me and be merciful to me. You are the best amongst those who show mercy.
4. Prayer for Second 10 Days of Ramadan

This prayer, which is from the Qur’an, was recommended by the Prophet Muhammad to be recited as much as possible during the second 10 days of Ramadan for maximum rewards and forgiveness of sins. This prayer is special for me, as my father advised me to recite it during the first Ramadan I shared with my husband after our marriage, when I was pregnant with our first child, on bed rest, and unable to attend taraweeh prayers at our mosque in New York City.

“Allahumma innaka afuwun tuhibbul afuwa faafu anna.”
Oh Allah indeed you are the greatest pardoner and you like the act of pardoning. Hence, please forgive us.
5. Prayer for the Third 10 days of Ramadan

This particular prayer was recommended by the Prophet Muhammad to be recited during the last 10 days Ramadan as much as possible. It beseeches God to forgive us, because God is indeed the best at forgiving humans for their mistakes.

“Astaghfirullaha rabbi min kulli zambin wa atabu ilaih.”

I seek forgiveness of all my sins from Allah who is my lord and sustainer and I return back in repentance to him alone.
6. Prayers of Zikr

Zikr, or prayers recited over and over again in the remembrance of God, is often thought to be part of the Sufi Islamic tradition, when in fact it is an integral part of all Muslims’ lives and especially important during Ramadan. A great way to connect with God while doing all the mundane chores of daily life (driving, waiting in line, preparing the evening meal), is to recite over and over these short phrases:

Subhan’allah, an expression used by Muslims to express strong feelings of joy or relief and recalls how everything Muslims have is thanks to Allah.

Alhamdulillah, or "Praise be to God!" (It is a Qur'anic exclamation with a similar meaning as hallelujah.)

Astaghfirullah, which means "I seek forgiveness from God."

Allahu Akbar, or "God is the Greatest."
image: http://www.theholidayspot.com/ramadan/images/holy-quran.jpg
Holy Qur'an


Friday, May 18, 2018

MASSO: "CORRECTION; I'M NOT WITH STUPID 1 OR STUPID 2"

Jerry McHale's Blog

     
                                                                   


(Ed.'s Note: The unauthorized use of local politicians by blogger Jerry McHale to make it appear that everyone is publicly endorsing his drinking buddy disgraced District 37 State Rep. Rene Oliveria has hit a snag.

After Jerry posted what appeared to be a public endorsement by Carlos Masso, a former Brownsville Navigation District commissioner and currently in a runoff for the 197th District Court against Adolfo Cordova, Masso didn't wait long to disabuse his Facebook followers of the allegation.

"I'm running as an independent and not associated with Mr. Oliveria's campaign," Masso posted.

How long before others follow suit?

Will John Wood, Ernesto de Leon, Rick Lepre, Dave Handelman, Maclovio O'Malley, etc., Not long ago, Robert "Captain Bob" Sanchez countered McHale's Fake News assertion that he was endorsing Oliviera, a highly unlikely proposition since Oliveira is now living with the captain's ex-wife down the street from his crib and has published an ad charging Oliveira with seducing her when he was let into the Sanchez residence.

With Oliveira's recent DWI charge that involved him slamming the rear of a car driven by a woman who was waiting for a light to change, took off and had his mate tell police there had been no accident, refusing to take an alcohol breath test or sobriety test, having police acquire a warrant to draw his blood, and then having to be held up by a police woman so he wouldn't fall, it's no surprise other candidates are distancing themselves from the inebriated rep.

Oliveira is facing Cameron County Pct. 2 Commissioner Alex Dominguez in a runoff election. Early voting ended Friday and the elections is Tuesday, May 22. 

JUST CHARGE IT TO RENE, HE GOTS LOTS OF PAC(s)A DOUGH

By Juan Montoya

The night District 37 State Rep. Rene Oliveira got plastered and ended up rear-ending a woman waiting for a traffic light (April 27), he had charged $183.27 to his credit card for "food for supporters at meeting discussing campaign issues."

(It must have been intoxicating conversation because after he left hes lammed into the back of a car driven by the woman who was waiting at a traffic light. You can buy a lot of "food" for $183.27.)
Image result for rene oliveira
That's what he reported to the Texas Ethics Commission on his campaign contribution and expenditure report for the period from Feb. 25 to May 12.

He also reported he had collected $126,230 from supporters (for one or two exceptions, all  lobbyists and industry Political Action Committees, PACS) and had spent $110,376 to get reelected.


Think about it. In the space of 77 days, a lucky
toss, PACs and lobbyists forked out $126,000 to help keep their boy in Austin. That is almost 10 times the average family income in District 37 ($13,416).


All that for a job that pays $600 per month, or $7,200 per year, plus a per diem of $190 for every day the Legislature is in session (also including any special sessions).

That adds up to $33,800 a year for a regular session (140 days), with the total pay for a two-year term being $41,000.

So it's not the government pay that keep Rene in his bon vivant's lifestyle. It's the private interests who know that he is their kind of politicians. Once bought, he stays bought.

Ask Excelon, the parent company of Annova LNG. Since 2015 they have contributed $10,000 to Rene's office kitty, getting him to go as far as to write a letter of recommendation for the LNGs at the Port of Brownsville where says he has been assured that their operations are "safe and environmentally sound".


Yet, he dutifully lists in his ads that the Sierra Club-Lone Star Chapter – which has a diametrically opposite view of the LNGs – rated him 100 percent him their legislator rating in 2018. Go figure.

(The list of PACs and lobbyists on the campaign report are too numerous to list. But if you want to go through the list, click on link: http://204.65.203.5/public/100709366.pdf

This will show you who his real masters are and who he jumps for when they pull out their checkbooks. 

WHILE BUS RIDERS SEEK SHELTER FROM THE BAKING SUN...
























Image result for HIKE AND BIKE TRAILS, BROWNSVILLE TEXAS
(Ed.'s Note: Not a day goes by that we don't witness scenes like the one above.

In fact, this family group is lucky there's a stand of oleanders near the bus stop to take some shelter from the baking sun.

Meanwhile, bikers who take a leisurely cruise around town can do so and enjoy the ride. If they get tired, attractive rest shelters have been installed by the city to take a break.

If it's after dark, the city has implemented a glow stone trail project with a budget of $90,000 from department funds so they can't lose their way.

On the other hand, many times BUS riders have to wait under the baking sun or in rain or cold. And we have posted here before that the bus shelters procured by the BUS contractors lie unassembled in their bus barns.

Aside from not providing riders with shelter from sun and rain, there are few benches for the people to use. Whenever the question of shelters arise, it is predictable that the managers of BUS will announce publicly that they have just spent gazillions to buy chingos of them. But where are they?

Image result for rose gowen, rrunrrunIn contrast, the city commission – with commissioner Rose Gowen pedaling at the point – make no bones that they are dead set on making Brownsville bike friendly and will spend the people's money to place this city on the map of "active" tourism.

Toward that end, they passed something called the Complete Streets Resolution #2012-056 adopted on October 2, 2012. One of the provisions adopted by the commission was that 10 percent of any transportation-related Certificates of Obligation go to bike and hike trails.

When the city paid to be named an All-American City, did anyone ask about priorities?)




Thursday, May 17, 2018

CARLOS RIOS, EX-TSC CANDIDATE, ARRESTED FOR DWI

Special to El Rrun-Rrun

His photo is not in the Brownsville Police Department inmate list, but we have received confirmation from multiple reliable sources that Carlos Rios, the losing candidate in the Texas Southmost College trustee race for Place 6 was arrested early this morning for Driving While Intoxicated.

According to our sources, the incident took place at about 3:18 a.m. Thursday at the Whataburger Restaurant at the corner of U.S. 77 Frontage Road and FM 802 (Ruben Torres). They say that Rios walked inside the restaurant and became verbally abusive with the manager who asked him to leave.

They say he thrice became abusive and then went outside and got into his Tahoe, which bore one of his campaign signs stuck to the rear window. Rios then drove to the carry-out lane and fell asleep at the window until police were called to remove him because he was obstructing passage of other cars.

Police arrived and arrested him and had the Tahoe towed away.

Rios came in a close third during the TSC race for the seat held by incumbent Dr. Rey Garcia. He received 1,871 votes, or 30.13 percent. In the photo above he is seen with his mentor  District 37 State Rep. Rene Oliveria, who was himself arrested for DWI April 27.

Garcia will face J.J. De Leon Jr. in a runoff election June 23.



JERRY! JERRY! JERRY! JERRY! JERRY! JERRY! JERRY!

(Ed.s Note: If I ever handed in a first-person story in the newspapers I worked for, I could expect an irate city editor to walk over to my desk with the printout and throw it on my desk. "Our readers don't care what you think. They want you to inform them of what happened. So rewrite this and inform them. We couldn't care less what you think." And so it is with some trepidation that I write the post below about a personal friendship I promise it won't happen again soon.) 

"Oh and it's a hollow feelin' when
It comes down to dealin' friends

It never ends…"


By Juan Montoya
I helped him bury his baby daughter.

And when I was put in storage, he raised money so my kids could have a Christmas.

Image result for rene oliveira, texas southmost collegeWhen I graduated from J school, my first job was at the Brownsville Herald where Jerry McHale and Dave Handleman ran the sports desk. In those days – since it was a relatively small paper – we often found ourselves at some of the same events; fights, soccer games, etc., covering it for the sports section and the news side.                                                                                                                                                                                                       At first we were just co-workers and after a while, became friends. That's why what follows is a bit painful But if there must be a break, then let it be a clean one.
Those who read the cyber pages know that Jerry is an undying fan of District 37 State Rep. Rene Oliveira. I once knew Rene and considered him an acquaintance.                                                                                                             He remained on the fringes of our barrio group, aloof in a sense because of his station and familial status. Nonetheless, we had mutual friends in a small town with a lot of people.                                                                                                                                                                    But one must be dispassionate when it comes to politics. and there's the rub.


I know that Jerry is rewarded – perhaps not as handsomely as others – by Oliveria. And that's not necessarily bad. Everyone like a little beer money once in a while.

But rewards carry the encumbrance of obligation. And that obligation, your political support in your writing, sometimes – to paraphrase JFK – demands too much.
Image result for rene oliveira and jerry mchale, TSC

In perusing past Oliveira campaign financial statements, I would occasionally run across Jerry's name as well as my other colleague from the newsprint days, Tony Gray.

The amount that Rene put in their pockets ran into the $1,000s (Jerry's reported take is documented above.) He has made it worth their while to laud his exploits in Austin and cover up his foibles here. To each his own.

But when you weight the value of friendship against the results of political representation, then the money amounts to the 30 pieces of silver that Judas got in return for his treason. In this case, it's our poor community (nuestros pobres pueblos, as Neruda used to say) that you're selling down the river.

Let's face it. Rene has been there too long. When he starts to talk about his lapse in judgment and about how it was fortunate that no one was hurt when he slammed into the rear of a car being driven by a woman, and talking about putting it all behind as a "personal matter," then you know that the selfish nature of the politician is being put above the people that he is representing, us.

The same thing happened seven years ago when Rene's girlfriend took the fall for him when his uninsured car struck a van from behind and ruined the vehicle. They were not rich. They were barely making it and their old van was their only method of transportation. What did Rene do? Did he "take care of it" as he told the lady he struck April 27?

No. He stiffed them and they took the loss. He walked away from it and got his girlfriend Lupita a Cadillac. Que tal pollo. Now the woman – a friend's sister – had the further misfortune of suffering an aneurysm and memory loss.

We don't voluntarily choose selfish, self-centered (and may I add pampered) individuals to represent us in government. We tend to look for the best among us so we can be proud of our leaders and set them as an example for the young 'uns.

Rene stopped being that a long time ago.

And so it pains me when I read Jerry's posts disparaging vitriol against Rene's opponent in the District 37 state rep runoff, Cameron County Pct. 2 commissioner Alex Dominguez, and calling him everything from a rookie do-nothing to a greaseball. It pains because I know it's not Jerry talking. It's Rene's money.

It may be another tequila sunrise, but I stop at that point when one starts dealing in friends...It never ends.

Wednesday, May 16, 2018

OLIVEIRA: TO US "I'M NOT FOR LNGs!", TO FERC: "YES, I AM."





By Juan Montoya

For months – even years – District 37 Texas Representative Rene Oliveira has had it both ways.

On the one hand, he can say tell the Sierra Club he is a champion of the environment, and on the other he can give a nod and a wink to Big Oil and Gas for the construction of the liquified natural gas (LNGs) terminals at the Port of Brownsville.  

At the same time, he had been pocketing money ($10,000 or more) from the LNGs.

As a state representative, he is instrumental in guiding their efforts through the state's economic development bureaurcracy to make sure they get all the financial considerations and incentives they can.

And they have been extremely generous in return, bestowing upon him $100,000s of dollars in gratitude. (See graphic, click to enlarge.)

The letter above clearly shows the tightrope that Oliveira has tried to walk between his constituents who worry the terminals will harm the environment and the industry which finances his lifestyle.

The Sierra Club has vigorously asserted that the terminals cannot be "constructed and operated in a safe and responsible manner..," quite in opposition to Oliveira's claim to the FERC.

And various coastal and seashore communities and entities have come out against the terminals such as the South Padre Island city council, the Point Isabel Independent School District, the Laguna Madre Water District, the Port Isabel city commission, and the Laguna Vista town council.

Yet, Oliveria told the Valley Morning Star that:

“As a longtime legislator from the Brownsville area, I can assure you that the project has strong support from the local community and its leaders,” wrote Oliveira, chairman for the House committee on business and industry."

rita