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Yes, It’s ‘Artrageous’ This Weekend


Easton Corbin, Little Joe to Headline Pharr HubPhest April 7

VOL. I, NO. 33


McAllen High Named A National Demostration School




Bourbon St. Will be Hosting NHPO-RGV Networking Event






Hidalgo County Commissioners Agree To Shut Down Roadway That Divides Courthouse Square.




Wednesday, March 14, 2018

By Catherine Rampell If this is how we show China who’s boss, China has just learned it has a pretty dumb boss. On Thursday, President Trump signed sweeping new tariffs on steel and aluminum, against the urging of economists, allies and most of the manufacturing, retail and home-building industries. This policy will likely destroy American jobs both in industries that use steel and aluminum and in ones that may soon be hit by retaliatory measures from other countries. But no matter all that. Trump really, really wants to stick it to China! Too bad this won’t stick much. U.S. steel jobs have been mostly lost due to technological change (i.e., robots, not China). U.S. aluminum jobs have been mostly lost to places with cheaper electricity (i.e., Iceland, which is coincidentally also not China). Right now China isn’t even among the top 10 producers of U.S. steel imports. The top country we import from is Canada, which apparently should be grateful it has been given a reprieve from these tariffs “at least at this time.” If hurting Canada is Trump’s best strategy for intimidating China, our next step should be maple-syrup taxes. Misdirected metal tariffs are hardly the only way our dealmaker in chief has revealed himself to be a less-than-slick negotiator with China. The day before signing the tariff proclamation, Trump tweeted: “China has been asked to develop a plan for the year of a One Billion Dollar reduction in their massive Trade Deficit with the United States.” Golly, a whole One Billion Dollars! That sounds like a Staggering Sum.

Trump Has Been Playing Right Into China’s Hands WWW.RGVTIMES.COM

Except that our trade deficit with China last year was $375 billion. That means Trump asked China to amend the balance of trade by about 0.3 percent, or the equivalent of less than one day’s deficit. Because duh, everyone knows you prove yourself a tough negotiator by making a ridiculously teeny opening ask. A subsequent Wall Street Journal article suggested Trump actually meant to demand a $100 billion change in the deficit. For all the internet memes comparing Trump officials to Bond bad guys, the bumbling villains of Austin Powers are the better reference. Astonishingly, Trump’s $99 billion rounding error wasn’t even the only flub in that short trade-policy-via-Twitter missive. Note the president referred to China’s “massive Trade Deficit with the United States.” Not to be persnickety here, but China has a trade surplus with the United States; we’re the ones with the deficit. Trump has repeatedly accused administrations of making “bad deals” on trade due to “incompetence.” Yet in one fell tweet, he revealed his own trade-related ineptitude twice. You can bet Beijing noticed. But forget Twitter for a moment. Had Trump really wanted to get “tough” with China in the name of promoting U.S. interests and values, he has had ample opportunities. Every time, he has played right into Chinese hands. Take, for instance, the Trans-Pacific Partnership. This 12-country pact deliberately excluded China; it was to make sure the United States rather than China got to “write the rules of the road for trade in the 21st century,” as then-President Barack Obama put it. Among Trump’s first orders of business upon taking office, however, was to pull out of the pact. But that doesn’t mean the deal died when we left. Incidentally, also Thursday -- the day Trump signed his metal-tariff proclamation -- the remaining 11 members of the pact signed a new version of the same

trade deal. Their version stripped out some of the conditions won by U.S. negotiators, such as increased intellectual property protections for pharmaceuticals. Trump has declined other chances to get tough with China. After it became clear the Chinese constitution would change to allow President Xi Jinping to hold power indefinitely, Trump didn’t criticize the authoritarian move. Instead, in comments secretly recorded at a fundraiser last weekend, he expressed admiration for Xi as “a great gentleman” who “treated us tremendously well when I went over there.” Xi, Trump cheered, had just made himself “president for life. … I think it’s great.” Trump jokingly added that “maybe we will give that a shot someday,” the

line that got the most attention. But the comments letting Xi off the hook, in fact praising Xi for consolidating power, were far more consequential. They signal to China that not only do we not care about the country’s increasing authoritarianism; we encourage it. It’s not altogether surprising though. Xi has charmed the pants off Trump, who appears envious of the Chinese government’s military parades, press controls, disregard for human rights and other totalitarian perks. China’s most dangerous possible export to the United States isn’t a metal. Increasingly, it’s a style of political leadership. Catherine Rampell’s email address is Follow her on Twitter, @crampell. (c) 2018, Washington Post Writers Group

Wednesday, March 14, 2018


Hidalgo County residents cross Closner Blvd. to get to the Hidalgo County Courthouse. The street will be eventually be closed as part of the new courthouse design and revert to a location, with traffic flowing around the square.

New Courthouse Takes The Next Step

The Hidalgo County Commissioners Court took another step in their long planned goal of building a new courthouse. At last week’s meeting, the Commissioners Court approved an order supporting the transfer and acceptance of a portion of U.S. Business 281, abutting the Courthouse Square, subject to county lawyers receiving the meets and bounds from the Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT) Pharr office. The order also is pending final approval by the TxDOT Commission in Austin, which will meet later this month. “This means that there will no longer be a portion of 281 going through the Courthouse Square,” said Pct. 3 Commissioner Joe M. Flores. As the current design plans indicate,

Hidalgo County Judge Ramon Garcia explained that, “The new courthouse will be on what is now the present roadway that splits the Courthouse square.” Currently, the square is divided into two sections. One holds the courthouse with some adjacent parking for officials, judges and law enforcement. The other section is occupied completely by parking. Courthouse visitors must park in the second area and cross Closner Blvd. (U.S. 281) to get to the courthouse. That was the original design when the courthouse was first built in the last century. The property transfer will result in one property to include parking. TxDOT will route U.S. 281 around the square but has not released the final plan for that route.

Villalobos Sworn In As McAllen Commissioner By Davis Rankin

With punch and cake, handshakes, backslaps and photos with the family, Javier Villalobos took his seat as the newly elected McAllen city commissioner for District 1 at the commission’s regular meeting Monday. Villalobos, a lawyer, defeated businessman Tim Wilkins in a run-off to claim the seat formerly occupied by Richard Cortez, who resigned to run for Hidalgo County Judge. The run-off election was held Saturday, March 3, and commissioners Monday certified the results as follows: Villalobos received 942 votes to Wilkins’ 752 votes, a 56% to 44% split. Federal Judge Randy Crane swore in Villalobos in city commission chambers, as Villalobos’ family stood with him and friends and well-wishers packed the cham-

bers so that there was standing room only. “I think we have a good team, Villalobos told the crowd after being sworn, “and I know we have a good mayor” and said he will work for the betterment of the city. In an interview before the meeting, Villalobos remarked that he is interested in the financial transparency of McAllen and that he wants to make “sure our money is being spent correctly. Villalobos will fill out the remainder of Cortez’ term ending in 2021. Cortez defeated him in the special election to fill Scott Crane’s term after Crane died. With Villalobos seated, Cortez was officially off the commission, with Mayor Jim Darling quipping that Cortez is “on to bigger and better things.” Now the Democratic nominee for County Judge, Cortez faces Republican nominee Jane Cross in the fall.



Wednesday, March 14, 2018


Easton Corbin, Little Joe To Headline Pharr HubPhest April 7

Pharr Mayor Ambrosio Hernandez, M.D., announced that this year’s HubPhest will bring country music star Easton Corbin as this year’s headliner. The lineup will also feature musical performances by Drew & the Dancehall Dreamers, Arroyo Band, Bo Garza, Texas Dezire, and Little Joe y La Familia for the April 7 event. Mayor Ambrosio Hernandez, M.D., together with local radio personality JoJo from KTEX, announced the lineup for this year’s Pharr HubPhest, Pharr’s annual flagship festival. HubPhest will take place in downtown Pharr on Saturday, April 7, 2018, and is FREE for all attendees before 5 pm, and only $5 admission after 5 pm. HubPhest is a family-friendly festival of fun and entertainment. Features this year include an IBCA-sanctioned Barbecue Cookoff, food booths, a carnival, petting zoo, birds of prey, kid fish, dock dogs, and much more. “We are excited to announce that this year’s HubPhest will once again be a celebration of our unique cross-cultural heritage that spans borders, cultures, and languages,” Mayor Hernandez said. “This year’s festival will

celebrate our and our Tejano Country roots, and we are proud to announce our musical entertainment lineup and headlining act,” he continued. “We encourage everyone to bring your family, your friends, your lawn chairs, and join us on Saturday, April 7 for HubPhest!” With two No. 1 singles, multiple awards and nominations, plus performances on some of the biggest stages in the world, Mercury Nashville’s Easton Corbin has made a lasting impression on the country music landscape. He is lauded for his traditional country sound, authentic lyrics, and mastery of understatement. His self-titled debut album released in 2010 and spawned back-to-back hits “A Little More Country Than That” and “Roll With It;” making him the first country male artist in 17 years to have his first two consecutive singles reach No. 1. Corbin spent 2016 on one of the biggest tours in country music -Carrie Underwood’s The Storyteller Tour. He is currently working on his fourth album. For more information about HUBPhest and activities, visit

Wednesday, March 14, 2018



McAllen High Named A National Demonstration School

McAllen High School has been selected as a National Demonstration School by AVID (Advancement Via Individual Determination), a nonprofit organization that provides educators with proven, real-world strategies to accelerate the performance of underrepresented students. AVID strategies help these students succeed in college, career and life. The school joins approximately 170 other AVID National Demonstration Schools and was selected through an application process, screening, and review, which included a site visit. AVID Chief Executive Officer Sandy Husk, PhD, noted the significance of attaining Demonstration site recognition. “Schools recognized as National Demonstration Sites have proven their ability to successfully implement the AVID Elective course and take the strategies schoolwide to impact all students,” Dr. Husk said. “McAllen High was selected as an AVID National Demonstration School because it has implemented the AVID System throughout the school and can serve as a model for new AVID sites.” This recognition was established in 1993 with a $250,000 award from the Charles A. Dana Foundation of New

York. As part of the AVID Demonstration Sites Network, sites are expected to develop a model program with schoolwide participation. With AVID’s proven methodologies used throughout subject-area classes, performance levels improve for all students, but especially for those students who are the least likely to attend fouryear colleges. Schools from around the world that are preparing to implement the AVID System will visit Demonstration Schools, such as this one, to observe a highly evolved AVID System. Albert Canales, McAllen High’s principal, is pleased that the school was chosen as an AVID National Demonstration School, noting the impact of the program on staff and students. “It is a tremendous honor to be selected as a Demo, and we are proud of our AVID program and our school as a whole,” Canales said. “The use of AVID strategies schoolwide has positively impacted students and staff and we continue to see a more engaged and college-ready student body.” AVID (Advancement Via Individual Determination) is a nonprofit, proven college-readiness system that closes the

Internationally Renowned Music Artists To Perform In March At UTRGV

Cellist David Finckel and pianist Wu Han, among the most dynamic and influential forces in classical music today, will perform at 7 p.m. Friday, March 23, at the Performing Arts Complex on the UTRGV Edinburg Campus. Hailed for their virtuosity and insightful musicianship, their artistic versatility finds them in demand as recitalists, chamber musicians and orchestral soloists. In another musical interlude at UTRGV, Journey West – an educational music program that chronicles the migration of melody through an interactive multimedia performance – will be offered at 7 p.m. Saturday, March 24, at the Performing Arts Complex on the Edinburg Campus Journey West tracks melodies and changing instrumentation beginning in the Middle East, traveling through Eastern to Western Europe and, ultimately, arriving in the United States. The program illustrates the primary factors in carrying melodies to distant lands: wars, imperialism, nomadic dispersion, mass emigra-

Students and staff from McAllen High School stand with the McAllen School Board and Superintendent J.A. Gonzalez, Ed.D., at a School Board meeting on February 26. McAllen High has been selected as a National Demonstration School by AVID (Advancement Via Individual Determination), a nonprofit organization that provides educators with strategies to accelerate the performance of underrepresented students. The school is one of only 170 nationwide to receive this honor.

achievement gap. Today, AVID is implemented in over 5,600 schools in 44 states, the District of Columbia, and 16 other countries/territories and impacts over one million students in grades K–12 and in 43 postsecondary institutions.

The AVID College Readiness System transforms a school’s academic culture to increase the number of students who enroll in four-year colleges and succeed in higher education. For more information, please visit

Yes, It’s ‘Artrageous’ This Weekend

At top, pianist Wu Han and cellist David Finckel will perform at UTRGV, along with, bottom, Journey West.

tions due to political oppression, and musical crazes around the globe. To purchase tickets, visit http://patron.

The fifth annual gathering of artists from the Rio Grande Valley will present their work at the Artrageous Art Show at the Edinburg Conference Center at Renaissance March 16 and 17. The selected artists will feature a wide variety of paintings, sculptures, glass pieces, photography and mixed media. On Friday, March 16 a preview party will take place at 7 p.m. for those wanting to interact with the artists and have

the first option to purchase the art. The event is $40 per person and will include wine and appetizers. Sponsorship packages include tickets to preview. Set for this Saturday, March 17, the event is free to the public and will take place from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. The Artrageous Art Show is an event by the Edinburg Arts Foundation and proceeds will benefit the non-profit. For sponsorship information and tickets contact Vivian (956) 330-8594.


Wednesday, March 14, 2018


Everything You’ve Ever Wanted To Know About Vaqueros, Cowboys Sunday Speaker Series: From Vaquero to Cowboy, Free-Grazer to Barbed Wire

Bourbon St. Will Be Hosting NHPO-RGV Networking Event

The National Hispanic Professional Organization – RGV Chapter Board of Directors invites all business professionals to attend the March Networking Event from 6 to 9 p.m. on Thursday, March 15, at Bourbon St. located at 4800 N 10th St, McAllen. This event will serve to build and market your business and/or organization. Networking events are free to paying members and $10 for Non-Members. If you are a Non-Member, we urge you to speak to a Membership representative on how to become a member and the benefits of joining NHPO. The featured business and host for the month of March is “Bourbon Street Bar and Grill.” At Bourbon St. they grantee a good time and they always work hard so you can come in and relax and enjoy the great music, delicious food and amazing drinks. Bourbon St has the Coolest bartenders in town! This relaxing atmosphere will keep you enjoying the night, either watching something on the flat screen or chatting it up with another friendly face. The National Hispanic Professional Organization (NHPO) is a networking, nonprofit membership-based organization that provides a myriad of educational seminars as well as recreational and community events to foster and

promote self-improvement, professional advancement and personal achievement. NHPO’s mission is to provide its members with professional and business development, career opportunities and leadership training. These networking events are held the third Thursday of the month in various locations that are conducive to an enjoyable, relaxing and professional networking environment. Non-members may choose to join the organization with an annual individual membership of $40. This is a great opportunity to promote yourself as well as your business, services or organization. Business attire is highly encouraged and make sure to bring plenty of business cards. For more information, please visit or like them on Facebook

From March 13 through April 29, the “Vaquero: Genesis of the Texas Cowboy” exhibition will be available for viewing at the Museum of South Texas History in Edinburg. To further expand on this topic, the museum will host Caroline Miles, an associate professor at UTRGV, who will present “From Vaquero to Cowboy, Free-Grazer to Barbed Wire: Contested Borders” Sunday, March 18, at 2 p.m. Miles will discuss how the vaquero is part of a largely forgotten history of rich and contested relationships between the U.S. and Mexico. This presentation will also examine the controversy surrounding the UTRGV mascot, the vaquero. “Vaquero: Genesis of the Texas Cowboy” will be available for viewing after the presentation which will feature photographs with “bilingual narrative text that reveal the muscle, sweat, and drama that went into roping a calf in thick brush or breaking a wild horse in the saddle.” Miles is an associate professor of English and the Coordinator of Border Studies at the University of Texas-Rio Grande Valley. She received a bachelor of arts in American Studies from the University of Wales in the U.K., and master and doctorate degrees from the University of Southern Mississippi. She has published numerous articles on global capitalism and the South as well as on dime novels and Latin American feminism. Her current research examines how global borders quarantine and distract from racial, economic and national

Caroline Miles

problems. She is also the recipient of the prestigious UT System Regents’ Teaching Excellence Award. Sunday Speaker Series is included in the fee for regular museum admission. FRIENDS of the Museum are admitted free as a benefit of FRIENDship. This program is made possible with generous support from the Carmen C. Guerra Endowment. Mrs. Guerra was deeply committed to supporting educational opportunities in the Rio Grande Valley. The Museum of South Texas History is located in downtown Edinburg at 200 North Closner Boulevard on the Hidalgo County Courthouse square. Hours of operation are from 1 p.m.–5 p.m. Sunday and 10 a.m.–5 p.m. Tuesday–Saturday. For more information about MOSTHistory, including becoming a FRIEND, visit, like us on Facebook, follow on Twitter, find on Google+ or call (956) 383-6911.

VOL. I, NO. 10


Free drive-thru flu vaccination clinic

Hidalgo County Health and Human Services and The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley’s Office of Emergency Preparedness partnered to offer 500 free flu vaccines to all first responders, UTRGV faculty, staff, their families and the public. The three-station setup were located at the UTRGV CESS Building parking lot, and offered a glimpse into what an emergency immunization procedure would look like. Patients drove through the first station, where they filled out brief paperwork, and moved on to a second station, where nurses waited to administer the vaccine. At the third and final station, nurses briefly observed the patients for any immediate reactions to the shot, and gave out light refreshments. And at no point did patients have to leave their vehicle. “The purpose of this clinic is to take advantage of an opportunity to partner with the university, provide free flu vaccinations to the community, and to demonstrate to the public that we can handle a mass vaccination clinic,” said Eddie Olivarez, chief administrative officer of Hidalgo County Health and Human Services. More than 60 people received vaccines, with the average time to process the patient and administer the vaccine at about five minutes per individual.






Wednesday, March 14, 2018

Proper Posture, Tai Chi Can Be The Difference

If you’re like most people, your posture could use some improvement. But how do you do that? The classic advice is to stand straight, with your head up, shoulders back, and belly in. While these are reasonable adjustments, tai chi takes a different approach that may be more effective. It aims to align the body in ways that afford safe, unstrained, and graceful postures—not the military-like, one-sizefits all, rigid stances many think of as good posture. Instead, in tai chi, good posture centers around the principle of verticality. That means the head is centered over the torso, the torso rests over the hips, and the hips are centered over the legs and feet, your base of support. Here’s how to do it. The spine is literally the backbone of verticality, so let’s start there. Tai chi classics say, “The spine should be like a necklace of pearls hanging from heaven.” Your goal should be to elongate the spine while still allowing for its natural curves. This can reduce wear and tear on the discs between your vertebrae. In this position, your head will also sit squarely on top of your spine instead of jutting forward— a common profile that you will see if you take the time to observe others. Your head weighs about 10 to 12 pounds, but just a slight tilt forward more than doubles the amount of strain on your neck muscles. Get into typical texting position, and your muscles must work five times as hard. No wonder your neck and upper back are tight and achy.

Proper alignment helps prevent that. The next area to focus on comprises the waist and pelvic region, which connect the upper body and lower body. In tai chi classics, this area is called the “commander.” It’s the central, coordinating hub where all movements originate. Muscle imbalances in this area have been associated with pain in the back, knee, and even neck, along with affecting your gait and balance. Maintaining tone and flexibility in the muscles and other soft tissues of the hip and pelvic area facilitates good posture and movement patterns and reduces pain. At the foundation of good posture are your feet, but you rarely hear about them in traditional posture advice. If alignment is off at your feet, though, the imbalance travels up the body, possibly causing painful problems along the way. Western thinking usually attempts to correct these misalignments with products like shoe inserts, but tai chi works to naturally correct imbalances and improve range of motion. While specifics vary with different tai chi movements, in general you should keep your weight centered over the balls of your feet and all of your toes, and point your feet in the direction of your kneecaps. The result is a healthier posture that works for you without forcing your body into uncomfortable positions. So, the next time you want to improve your posture, skip the stiff stance and focus on your spine, pelvic region, and feet.

Wednesday, March 14, 2018


Build a Better Bladder Exercises, lifestyle change, medications, and procedures can alleviate incontinence and give you your life back. A leaky bladder or a sudden urge to go to the bathroom is uncomfortable and embarrassing. But you can take steps to alleviate the problem. “Some people tell me they would have sought treatment sooner if they’d known it was this simple,” says Dr. Anurag Das, director of the Center for Neurology and Continence at Harvard-affiliated Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center. Lifestyle changes One of the first lines of defense is pillfree and costs nothing: lifestyle change. For urge incontinence, you can try timed voiding (urinating on a schedule) and bladder guarding, which teaches you to cope with triggers that set off the urge to go, such as washing dishes or hearing water. “You squeeze your muscles to hold in urine before a trigger, which sends a message to the brain that this is not the time to go,” says Dr. Das. Other lifestyle changes include watching fluid intake; quitting smoking, to reduce coughing and pressure on the bladder; and minimizing bladder irritants such as caffeine, alcohol, and carbonated drinks. Pelvic floor rehab The pelvic floor muscles aid control of your bladder and bowels. Strengthening these muscles can be helpful to people with stress incontinence as well as those with urge incontinence. This is done with Kegel exercises, which involve squeezing and releasing the muscles you use to hold in urine. A physical therapist can help you learn how to do the exercises properly. “The majority of people with urge incontinence will improve with rehab. It may not make it 100% better, but even 75% may be acceptable to many people,” says Dr. Das. Medications When pill-free measures aren’t enough to curb incontinence, medications may

help. The most commonly prescribed drugs for urge incontinence are anticholinergics, such as oxybutynin (Ditropan). Side effects can include dry mouth and eyes, headache, constipation, and confusion. Some drugs relieve stress incontinence, such as tricyclics like imipramine (Tofranil) and alpha-adrenergic agonists like pseudoephedrine (Sudafed), which are often found in cold medicines. However, these, too, are limited by side effects, and their effect declines over time. When an enlarged prostate causes overflow incontinence, alpha blockers such as doxazosin (Cardura) may help by relaxing the smooth muscle of the prostate. It may take trial and error to find the best drugs with the fewest side effects. Procedures Injections of botulinum toxin (Botox), a muscle relaxant, are used to treat urge incontinence. “The downside is a higher incidence of urine retention and risk of bladder infection. Some patients won’t be able to urinate and may need to use a catheter,” says Dr. Das. Injections of calcium hydroxylapatite (Coaptite) are used to treat stress incontinence by tightening the urethra. A procedure called sacral neuromodulation can help people with urge incontinence. A small device called Interstim is implanted in the lower back to stimulate the sacral nerve, improving both bladder and bowel problems. Surgery sometimes is used for stress incontinence. This involves creating a sling that wraps around a person’s urethra. “You don’t have to use artificial mesh materials for the sling; you can use the patient’s own fascia (muscle lining) if preferred,” says Dr. Das. There is no surgery for overflow incontinence if the bladder muscle does not work. However, in cases of blockage from the prostate, prostate surgery may help.

The Valley Times – March 14, 2018  
The Valley Times – March 14, 2018