Thought of the Day: Injustice anywhere, is a threat to justice everywhere – Reverend Martin Luther King Jr. 

I’ve been watching a lot of Empire and this quote came up and it applied to the recently failed anti-discrimination act.

General News and Hot Topics

Houston HERO Denial – Proposition 1 which was a anti-discrimination act that would have protected 15 classes of people was defeated soundly and Houston remains one of the last major cities to not have an anti-discrimination ordinance on the books. Supporters of the HERO act will point to the blatant misrepresentation, slander and smear campaign used to defeat the bill. However, Bob McNair had a different view he thought the bill could have been written differently it was unclear and Houston’s openly Lesbian mayor refused to modify it. Whatever, the reason for  its defeat Houston has become a national shame for denying basic anti-discrimination rights regardless of the flaws in the bill presented. And with blatant discrimination at many of the local business the GasLamp controversy comes to mind link below it is indeed a travesty Houston should try to correct as soon as possible and should be a point of emphasis for the myriad of mayoral candidates.

Popular Midtown Bar Accused of Discrimination (Houston Chron)

Bob McNair explains his donation to anit-HERO campaign

Seth Meyers explains why HERO failed

Houston’s Problem with LGBT (Washington Post)

 

Presidential Candidates and Debates (Particularly Bernie Sanders) – My love affair with Bernie Sanders isn’t limited to me. He is growing in popularity and seems to be the better candidate in terms of trustworthiness. He is an experienced Senator and politician that voted on the right side of big issues (i.e. Iraq, Patriot Act, Obamacare) and he just seems to have a brash charm that suggests he would get things done. I found an article link below that while a little dated has some interesting quoteables on his stances on a few things. Although the quotes are quite old from July to be exact they mirror some of my own stances on the issues (see My Platform) such as the Militarization of Police, Prison Reform, the War on Drugs, Education, and others. Although its not a tit for tat of my ideas of things its pretty close and the idea that America could be and should be better is one that I share.

When I watched the Democratic debate on October 13th I wasn’t quite familiar with his platform or even who he was, but Bernie Sanders’s common sense approach to the issues and passion for things that are very real to me and most of the American people stood out and even without knowing anything about him I could tell he was an intelligent and shrewd man who easily won that debate. As he climbs up in the polls it looks like we might get an honest peoples candidate with a good shot at beating any publicity stunt the Republican’s throw into the race. Also feel the Bern might be one of the best presidential hashtags I’ve ever seen.

Top Bernie Sanders Quotes (Huffington Post)

Obama – I’ve been trying to get an idea of what Obama has done for our country and the type of Legacy he is going to leave. I was looking for the social reform hes done namely Obamacare, the change in the culture towards the LGBT community, repeal of ‘Don’t Ask Don’t Tell’, things along that nature. However I was distracted by how well the United States has done economically under him. Apparently Obama has done better than Reagan in all measurable terms of economic success (unemployment, stock market performance, and job growth). Links below. I also found a couple of websites listing some of his major accomplishments and mind you this is before the Iran Deal or the Trans-Pacific Partnership.

309 Obama Accomplishments

50 Obama Accomplishments (Washington Monthly)

Obama International Legacy (LA Times)

Better Economy Democrat or Republican (Forbes)

Obama Miracle Market (Forbes)

Obama Best Economical President (Forbes)

Obama Outperforms Reagan on Growth (Forbes)

ISIS – The problem with ISIS or ISIL or whatever they choose for their acroynm to be mirrors what I said about Iraq in a previous article where I basically said the United States has got into a lot of trouble and spent a lot of money to see little gains for the average American dealing with the problems in the Middle East. Syria and the hellhole it has become Republicans are taking to be a sign of Obama’s ineptitude at foreign affairs and how his light handed approach caused the degradation of the region. Now we have officially sent in 50 troops

http://foreignpolicy.com/2015/09/11/it-s-not-obama-s-fault-syria-middle-east/

 

Trans-Pacific Partnership – The Trans-Pacific Partnership is being hailed as the next NAFTA on a bigger scale that allows the U.S. to make the rules for Easter Asian trade before China does. However, numerous groups are outright opposed to the deal saying it mostly benefits big corporation and the average American producer or worker will suffer. Obama is selling it as a trade deal that reduces tariffs on United States products allowing us to trade with the new emerging markets, applies regulations to the emerging markets including a minimum wage, and protects intellectual rights across the world. The main complaints people have are the limited protections against currency manipulation against the dollar which can act just like a tariff, the ISDS which is an extra-judicial panel that would allow companies to sue countries for hurting their business with actions such as taxing tobacco for public health, and extending copyright and patent times. The deal seems to favor capital interests and only minimally help labor if at all. Although the debate is still in its infancy with the complete agreement only recently being released it is curious why the people’s champ Obama would try to push forward a trade deal that has negligible affects for the people.

Capital vs. Labor TPP (Investopedia)

TPP (BBC)

TPP (major issues)

TPP (Washington Post)

Price of Oil – Still in the low to mid 40s. However, other Middle Eastern countries in OPEC and out of it are getting rather annoyed at everyone’s reluctance to cut production. They also are tired of the idea that “Oh the price will rise next year” even though demand has slowed and production is actually ramping up as Iran and other countries get involved. When will the low prices hit the bottom, no one knows.

http://www.wsj.com/articles/omans-oil-minister-says-over-production-irresponsible-1447074611

 

Upcoming Houston Festivals and Events – Day for Night is pretty much all I got. Maybe Zoo Lights as well. Renaissance Fest is closing in a few weeks, but I dont know if that really counts.

NFL – The Cowboys have crushed all my dreams. They are a really good team with a really bad record. In fact they are really good. The run game is better than people give it credit for, the offensive line is great still, and the defense although they let us down last game is vastly improved. They just cant finish. They should just crater to get some good picks and try again next year. On a bright note Carolina seems to have found their groove. I like the Panthers quite a bit I’ll be rooting for them this year.

NCAA Football – Another day another Aggie loss. Not a good thing. 2 cupcakes before the inevitable schlacking by LSU. Though if we beat LSU Spivital might be forgiven. The season will turn out to be 9-4 assuming we get another consecutive Bowl win which isn’t awful, but still a disappointment to just about every Aggie fan out there.

Basketball Season – The Spurs are still cruising and Atlanta sits on top of the East. All the story lines from last year still appear applicable. The West is hot the East is not save Atlanta, Cleveland and the Bulls. Still early but it looks like it will be a good one.

Bars and Adventures – Went to a place called Julep and it was fancy for lack of a better. Also the Renaissance Fair was an interesting trip. Quite the experience.

 

 

For Future Reference for those of you who won’t read my platform post. My main platform is split into two groups. What I believe we as a human race should strive to achieve which I will call human aspirations and the major social issues of today.

Human Aspirations

  • A sustainable infrastructure not just to survive but to thrive (affordable access to food, water, shelter, electricity, and access to information [internet]).
  • An education foundation so that everyone alive can learn without a major deficiency in knowledge or future performance.

Social Issues

  • Prison System
  • General Inequality and Prejudice
  • War on Drugs
  • The Militarization of Police

 

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