Sunday, November 30, 2014

"Cafe Cubano" & recipes with Sonia Martinez & Marta Verdes Darby, authors



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Saturday, November 29, 2014

Schumer is showing the way for Democrats


Politicians have learned that Obama Care is extremely unpopular.  It may be the most unpopular piece of legislation in recent memory   Go to a political cemetery and count the tombstones of Democrats who voted for Obama Care and are out of office.   The losses are historic!

So what do Democrats do about Obama Care?   How do they remove this burden from their backs?


"Speaking at the National Press Club, the influential Senate leader identified the decline of middle-class incomes as the defining challenge of the age. Democrats can only win elections, Mr. Schumer said, as “the pro-government party”—and ObamaCare is undermining that larger political project.  
The Senator called the law a distraction from the “middle-class-oriented programs” his party should have pursued after 2008: “Unfortunately, Democrats blew the opportunity the American people gave them. We took their mandate and put all of our focus on the wrong problem: health-care reform.”  
Mr. Schumer said he still supported the entitlement’s goals, but “it wasn’t the change we were hired to make. Americans were crying out for the end to the recession, for better wages and more jobs.” 

Senator Schumer is opening a door so that Democrats can jump ship and vote, at least, for amendments or even a repeal.   He is letting Democrats know that allegiance to Obama Care is no longer a must to call yourself a Democrat.

Yes, do not be shocked if there are enough votes in the US Senate and Congress to override a presidential veto and repeal Obama Care.

This is what happens when:

1) you lose as badly as the Democrats did in 2014;
2) your leading candidate for president is looking for a way to detach herself from the Obama administration; and,
3) every Obama Care promise was broken by reality. 

Who would have believed this a year ago?   or when Justice Roberts made Obama Care a reality in June 2012?

P. S. You can hear CANTO TALK here & follow me on Twitter @ scantojr.


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Friday, November 28, 2014

Not surprised that Pres Obama ran into a little anger about immigration


On Tuesday, President Obama went to Chicago to take a victory lap on his recent immigration executive order.    
 
Yes, some were cheering but many were not, as reported by The New York Times:

"It was supposed to be a triumphant homecoming for President Obama, and a chance to cast his executive action on immigration as the latest chapter in America’s history of welcoming foreigners.    
But the president was forced Tuesday to pare down a speech aimed at selling his immigration plan by protesters who repeatedly interrupted him to demand even more relief.    
“I understand why you might have yelled at me a month ago,” Mr. Obama told three women in the audience who stood up to shout slogans of “Not one more!” “Stop deportations!” and “There is no justice!”    
“It doesn’t make much sense to yell at me right now,” he said.""
I don't know if it makes sense to yell at President Obama now.   To be fair, he reached pretty far to issue very controversial order that are very unpopular with the public.
 
However, a lot of these undocumented immigrants wanted more and sooner rather than later.
 
President Obama's problem is that he raised expectations in 2008 too much.  He will not please them unless he signs some type of comprehensive "immigration" that legalizes  11 million people, including the "dreamers".  
 
In 2009-10, President Obama had the majorities but did not deliver.    He faces the backlash now.
 
This is a good lesson for the next candidate who tells a lot of people what they want to hear in the campaign.   The lesson is that people will remember your promises and file claims to collect the promised benefit after they work to elect you.
 
P. S. You can hear CANTO TALK here & follow me on Twitter @ scantojr.


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Thursday, November 27, 2014

My Thanksgiving video



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Wednesday, November 26, 2014

The day before Thanksgiving and a few other thoughts



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A sad night compounded by criminal behavior


The much-awaited Ferguson decision finally came, and Officer Wilson was not indicted, as all of you know.

It was a sad night, because this story has no happy ending.  In other words, a young man is dead, and a good police officer will probably never wear the uniform again. 

The sadness was compounded by the reckless looting of minority-owned businesses:
KMOV-TV reports that the majority of stores that were damaged or completely destroyed during Monday night's violent riots in Ferguson were minority owned. Fire Departments around the St. Louis County Area put out 25 structural fires caused by vandals and looters following the announcement from the grand jury that Ferguson Police Officer Darren Wilson would not be indicted in the death of Mike Brown.
Most of the damaged businesses were on West Florissant Avenue and included: Walgreens, Little Caesers Pizza,  Autozone, Beauty Town, Title Max, Family Dollar Store, and O'Reilly Auto Parts. Small-business owner Natalie Dubose was in tears when she realized her cake store was attacked by vandals.
Dubose, a mother of two, previously told CNN, "If I can't open my doors every morning, I can't feed my kids in the evening. Just don't burn my shop down, don't destroy it."

As I said before, there is no pretty ending to this story.  At the same time, I have some serious questions:Who is going to replace these jobs or hire all of the people who work there?


First, where is the black leadership in the U.S.?  It would have been helpful to have had more messages calling for peace and tranquility.

Second, why wasn't Ferguson flooded with well-armed soldiers protecting property and lives?  Where was the National Guard?  Why didn't President Obama take charge and coordinate a stronger presence with Gov. Nixon of Missouri?

It's easy to second-guess, but it's very hard to see businesses burning and destroyed for no reason at all. 

We all remember that fellow running out with liquor bottles and laughing all the way to wherever he was headed.  What a sad way to remember a young man's tragic death.

P.S. You can hear CANTO TALK here & follow me on Twitter @ scantojr.

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DFW Sports: Cowboys vs Eagles next Thursday PLUS Stars, Mavericks & Rangers



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Tuesday, November 25, 2014

No 'Fun in Acapulco' these days

Years ago, Elvis made a movie called "Fun in Acapulco". It captured the magic of a great coastal town, from a wonderful beach to pretty girls to very friendly people. Believe it or not, that was the Acapulco that most Mexicans and foreigners remember. 

It's not fun anymore down in Acapulco as we check recent events from our southern neighbor.

In fact, it must be very bad in Acapulco.  

We just read this from the US Embassy in Mexico City:
"The U.S. Embassy in Mexico issued a security message Friday warning U.S. citizens to avoid the Pacific resort of Acapulco because of violence and protests.
In yet another blow to a coastal city once favored by U.S. movie stars and jet-setters in the 1950s and ‘60s, the embassy said its personnel “have been instructed to defer non-essential travel to Acapulco, by air or land,” and added that it “cautions U.S. citizens to follow the same guidelines.”
The alert noted that “protests and violent incidents continue in Guerrero state in response to the disappearance of 43 students there.”
Demonstrators have blocked highways to Acapulco, hijacked buses and blockaded the city’s airport to demand the government find the students who disappeared Sept. 26 in the nearby city of Iguala.
Prosecutors say local police working for a drug gang probably turned the students over to gang members, who may have killed them and burned their bodies."
Mexico is in the middle of a serious political storm over the death of 43 students. Unlike previous storms, this one is more like a Category 5 Hurricane.

The tragic disappearance of these 43 students has sparked demonstrations, such as the one with middle class housewives and women calling for peace. The tragedy of the students has also once again reminded Mexicans, of all socioeconomic levels, just how deadly this "drug war" has been. I have never seen so much anger in Mexico before.

The situation was compounded by a scandal over The First Lady's interest in a very expensive home. 

Our friend Alfredo Corchado of the Dallas Morning News is reporting that there is a lot of uncertainty in the country. It is hurting President Pena-Nieto's image.  

There are serious calls for his resignation, although I'm not sure what that will accomplish. The problem is not President Pena-Nieto.   It is years of corruption and a sense that justice is for sale.   

And let us not underestimate the billions of dollars flowing south from our consumption of illegal drugs. All of these dollars are used to purchase police and politicians.

The current crisis is putting a lot of people in the streets. It is also going to cost Mexico a lot of tourist dollars, if other resorts get violent like Acapulco.

P. S. You can hear CANTO TALK here & follow me on Twitter @ scantojr.




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"Cafe Cubano" & recipes with Sonia Martinez & Marta Verdes Darby, authors



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Monday, November 24, 2014

Dear Mr Kristof: The Issue is Illegal, not Legal Immigration

As someone who came to the U.S. legally many years ago, I find Nicholas Kristof's column in The New York Times rather sad.

Mr Kristof wrote "Immigration enriches you and me":
"What most defines the 11 million undocumented immigrants in America is not illegality but undaunted courage and ambition for a better life.
What separates their families from most of ours is simply the passage of time -- and the lottery of birth."
Yes, immigrants have enriched our country.  I think that my parents , and the other nearly 1 million Cuba who escaped communism, were "a net plus" for the U.S. 

Add immigrants from Eastern Europe, Vietnam, and Latin America, and the U.S. is better off because of them.
 
The issue today is "illegal immigration" or people who came in without papers and put a burden on social services, as we see with these kids flooding current schools
 
Legal and orderly immigration is great. Illegal and chaotic immigration is very bad for the country.
 
It's hard to believe that Mr Kristof does not understand the difference. He tries to say that a legal & illegal immigrant are the same.  They are not and that is not a reflection  on the immigrants or their intentions.
 
I understand why they want to come to the U.S. All I ask is that we bring them in an orderly fashion that is humane and makes sense for millions of Americans who can't find work or have seen their wages take a hit.
 
P. S. You can hear CANTO TALK here & follow me on Twitter @ scantojr.



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THE WEEK IN REVIEW WITH BILL KATZ OF URGENT AGENDA



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Sunday, November 23, 2014

President Obama is tone-deaf again

We've heard that President Obama once told Democrats concerned about ObamaCare's unpopularity that they shouldn't worry because they had him as some kind of a political firewall.  

So much for that firewall!  The Democrats lost the House in 2010, and 28 U.S. senators who voted for ObamaCare are gone.

He is once again misjudging public opinion for two big reasons.

First, it's true that most Americans generally favor immigration reform.  But that's not what President Obama just did, as John Podhoretz wrote:
The White House is banking on the fact that majorities in the polls support more open immigration policies than the Republican party does.
But what’s interesting to me is that those polls suggest the American people believe in setting up a “path to citizenship.” 
This new policy is not that.
Instead, it creates a new kind of status for people who have been here illegally for more than five years.
The two are very far from the same thing, and there’s a very real question whether this new system will seem a fair process to the American people or rather an arbitrary act of line-drawing.
Nor is there any real support for the president’s deep conviction that, in general, the public is with him, the source of his bizarre evident certainty that the two-thirds of the American voting population that did not vote is on his side.
In fact, polling after the election suggests the American people want policy in general to be set by Congress rather than Obama, and it’s not even close; in Gallup, the pro-GOP margin is 17 points
On another point, President Obama is deeply ignorant (or tone-deaf) of U.S. history, as Fred Barnes wrote:
On an issue that affects many millions of Americans, it’s best—even necessary—to have bipartisan support in Congress.
Going forward in a purely partisan fashion is bound to cause national discord, increase polarization, and heighten distrust in Washington.
Worse still, it means the issue will be controversial for years to come. 
What did our tone-deaf president just do?  He went against public opinion and legalized 5 million people without Congress.  You can get away with that in an emergency, but not over this.

The whole thing will blow up in his face.  

First, there is a good chance that a court will reverse it.  

Second, and here is the wild card that few are talking about, there is a good chance of another "people surge" at the U.S.-Mexico border.   

Why is this president so tone-deaf?  He has a high opinion of himself.  And he is surrounded by people who don't challenge him.  The net result is the kind of political tone-deafness that we've seen and continue to see.

P.S. You can hear CANTO TALK here & follow me on Twitter @ scantojr-


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A little politics and JFK 51 years later



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Saturday, November 22, 2014

Not "Fun in Acapulco" anymore!

Years ago, Elvis made a movie called "Fun in Acapulco".     
It's not fun anymore as we check recent events from our southern neighbor. 

It must be very bad in Acapulco.   

We just read this from the US Embassy in Mexico City:
"The U.S. Embassy in Mexico issued a security message Friday warning U.S. citizens to avoid the Pacific resort of Acapulco because of violence and protests.
In yet another blow to a coastal city once favored by U.S. movie stars and jet-setters in the 1950s and ‘60s, the embassy said its personnel “have been instructed to defer non-essential travel to Acapulco, by air or land,” and added that it “cautions U.S. citizens to follow the same guidelines.”
The alert noted that “protests and violent incidents continue in Guerrero state in response to the disappearance of 43 students there.”
Demonstrators have blocked highways to Acapulco, hijacked buses and blockaded the city’s airport to demand the government find the students who disappeared Sept. 26 in the nearby city of Iguala.
Prosecutors say local police working for a drug gang probably turned the students over to gang members, who may have killed them and burned their bodies."
Mexico is in the middle of a serious political storm over the death of 43 students.    The anger was compounded by a scandal over The First Lady's interest in a very expensive home.

Our friend Alfredo Corchado of The Dallas Morning News is reporting that there is a lot of uncertainty in the country.    It is hurting President Pena-Nieto's image.  

It is also putting a lot of people in the streets.    It is also going to cost Mexico a lot of tourist dollars.





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Will President Obama ever explain our new role in Afghanistan?

We just learned that President Obama has decided to extend our troops' role in Afghanistan.    

The NY Times reports that US troops will be involved in more fighting than we were told:
"Mr. Obama’s order allows American forces to carry out missions against theTaliban and other militant groups threatening American troops or the Afghan government, a broader mission than the president described to the public earlier this year, according to several administration, military and congressional officials with knowledge of the decision.
The new authorization also allows American jets, bombers and drones to support Afghan troops on combat missions."
The good news is that President Obama learned something from leaving Iraq without a US presence to make a difference.   

The bad news is that he is still not talking to the voters about his intentions.    

We need to know!


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President Obama has liberated the GOP from passing an immigration bill

The conventional wisdom is that President Obama has put the GOP in a no-win situation over immigration reform.  In other words, pass a bill or you will be labeled anti-immigrant.  

See The New Republic's position:
"There’s the growing risk that conservative anger will force Republicans to do something epically stupid in the near term, like shut down the government."
I disagree with that conclusion.  The GOP will react by challenging President Obama in the courts, and that's the right approach.

The politics of this will eventually play against President Obama, or exactly the reason that Democrats did not want to talk immigration during the campaign.

What if President Obama had given a different speech?

What if he had delayed his decision and called on the new Congress to take a serious look at immigration?  The answer is that he would have put the ball on the GOP's court and put all of the pressure on Capitol Hill.

President Obama would have looked conciliatory and like a man who understood the election results.  Everybody in the media would be asking Speaker Boehner and the GOP about immigration.

By acting, President Obama has made everything about his judgment.  If he had passed the ball to Congress, on the other hand, he would have put the focus on the economic and humanitarian angles of this issue.

P.S. You can hear CANTO TALK here & follow me on Twitter @ scantojr.


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More on President Obamas immigration speech



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Friday, November 21, 2014

Hoax is 'farsa' in Spanish

Let's leave the constitutional issues to people a lot smarter than me.  My guess is that President Obama's action is lawless, but I am not a constitutional lawyer.  

President Obama's speech is a cruel hoax, and that really makes me mad.

First, President Obama is trying to pick a fight with the GOP.  He wants an issue to rally the base.  He is hoping that the GOP will overreact and unleash a bunch of stupid statements against immigrants.

Second, President Obama's speech was cynical and not motivated by any concern for what he called "undocumented immigrants."  Why didn't he do something about this problem back in 2009-10, when he enjoyed huge majorities?  He avoided the issue before, especially during the most recent campaign.

Third, President Obama cited former presidents but forgot to say that no one ever stopped deportations for 5 million people.

Fourth, President Obama's actions will likely be deleted by the next president or a court.

Fifth, it will create chaos in law enforcement, as Pat Buchanan wrote:
The political, psychological and moral effects of Obama’s action will be dramatic.
Sheriffs, border patrol and immigration authorities, who have put their lives on the line to secure our broken borders, have been made to look like fools. Resentment and cynicism over Obama’s action will be deeply corrosive to all law enforcement.   
Businessmen who obeyed the law and refused to hire illegals, hiring Americans and legal immigrants instead, and following U.S. and state law on taxes, wages and withholding, also look like fools today.
Last but not least, what about the people who are waiting in line to come to the U.S.?  
They would have been better flying to the U.S. and overstaying their visas or cross the border.  

A bad night for "the rule of law," and a good night for cynicism.

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REACTION TO PRESIDENT OBAMA'S IMMIGRATION SPEECH WITH JORGE PONCE.



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Thursday, November 20, 2014

A video about President Obama's speech tonight.



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President Obama and more pandering of some Hispanics tonight



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Anger and Scandals Down in Mexico

A year ago, President Peña-Nieto of Mexico was looking great.  He had passed significant energy and education reforms.  He was praised for working with opposition parties and getting things done.  He seemed like the right guy for Mexico's complex political and economic system.

What a difference a year can make!

Today, there is anger over the deaths of 43 students, apparently victims of drug gangs.  

The mayor of Iguala, the place of the crime, and his wife were recently arrested for connections to cartels.  

There are media reports that several mayors and politicians have cartel ties, too.  

There are calls for President Peña-Nieto's resignation and serious concerns that he is losing control of the country.

Add to this the other scandal regarding his wife's luxurious home.    She has apparently decided to sell the controversial home, but the damage is done.  
Mexican journalist Jose Carreno-Figueras believes that this is the straw that broke the camel's back for Mexico:
The Mexican government does not appear ready to fall, not even close.
But it seems to be in a defensive situation, maybe waiting for the tempest to wane so that it can regain the political initiative.
It is, in many ways, a crisis of confidence. It is as if all the problems that were not attended to through history were appearing together: the impunity allowed to wrongdoers, the politicization of justice, the corruption, the perceived interaction of different levels of authorities with organized crime, the inefficiency of the police... and on and on.
In other words, the wrongdoers appear to get away with murder. Right or wrong, there is the feeling that the whole system is compromised.  The authorities do not appear to be able to control the violent gangs that have plagued the country for the last 10 or 15 years even if they claim that a big part of the violence has been the result of the breakdown of the major drug cartels.
Mexico's political system will survive this terrible storm.  Nevertheless, my contacts tell me that the money from illegal drug sales is compromising police and government officials.  And so far the cartels are winning, especially in the smaller towns.

P.S. You can hear CANTO TALK here & follow me on Twitter @ scantojr.


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US-LATIN AMERICA STORIES OF THE WEEK WITH FAUSTA RODRIGUEZ WERTZ



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Wednesday, November 19, 2014

My new video about The Gettysburg Address



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President Obama will kill immigration reform if he goes solo

We are not sure who is advising President Obama on this latest immigration reform debate and the threat of an executive order. 

I hope that one of President Obama's advisers is also telling him that a path to legalization is dead if he decides to go solo.

I saw two editorials today that should be read at The White House before the executive order is issued.

"Three years ago, when advocacy groups pressed him to take such a step, Mr. Obama demurred. “Believe me, the idea of doing things on my own is very tempting,” he said. “Not just on immigration reform. But that’s not how — that’s not how our system works. That’s not how our democracy functions. That’s not how our Constitution is written.”    
Mr. Obama may find a constitutional way to rewrite the nation’s immigration laws. But in his frustration with democracy, he is likely to prove his point: Unilateralism will not make the system work."
Second, The Dallas Morning News, a newspaper that endorsed Senator McCain and Governor Romney, does not want President Obama to go solo either:
"If Obama truly wants to get Congress moving, he must stop giving legislators the excuses they need to continue delaying and start giving them something to work with."
By going solo, President Obama shows me a couple of things:

a) He has not learned a thing from the recent election, as David Brooks wrote;

b) He has little faith in his ability to persuade the public.  

Why doesn't President Obama address the nation and make his case for immigration reform?    I mean a speech from the Oval Office to the country, not some after dinner chat at a fundraiser attended by a bunch of Hollywood stars who paid thousands of dollars to hear him speak.

Last but not least, President Obama will kill any chance to pass a Dream Act, a path to legalization, work visas and anything else that falls under immigration reform.

I hope that the Hispanic left understands that.   President Obama may issue an executive order but it will be downhill from that moment forward for immigration reform.  They will win a very small battle and lose the war.

P. S. You can hear CANTO TALK here & follow me on Twitter @ scantojr.

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