A collection of newsworthy information as reported from newspapers, magazines, and blogs.

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Romney Doesn't Have The Interest, Dedication, or Compassion To Fix Middle Class Problems



Blacks between the ages of 16 and 19 are more likely to be unemployed than any other group in the nation.  Their jobless rate has consistently been more than twice that of white teens - and more than four times the national rate overall.  The economist attributes these unemployment inequities to a growing shift of jobs - from the inner cities to the suburbs.  A weaker job networks for blacks, a low minimum wage, a deficiency in soft skills, and a bias among some employers are also factors.  Yet, Newt Gingrich says "go to work as a janitor." 

 I find it ironic that Republicans have such disdain for the lazy, and yet their solution to every problem is do nothing. Their answer to wealth inequality, do nothing. Health care? Do nothing. Climate change? Nothing. Racism? Doesn't exist. For a group of people so head over heels in love with self-reliance, they sure do recommend a lot of sitting on their ass.”  Bill Maher
Who failed are the Americans that can’t see the beginning of a miracle of national rebirth right under their jaded noses.  Who failed are the smart ass ideologues of the left and right who began rooting for this President to fail so that they could be proved right in their dire and morbid predictions.  Who failed are the movers and shakers behind our obscenely dumb news cycles that have turned “news” into just more stupid entertainment for an entertainment-besotted infantile country.  And who failed are the obvious racist who have crawled out of their holes into the daylight for all to see and condemn.
It’s time for some sense and sensibility. Conservative principles and values are sending the middle class Americans to the poor house.  Republicans are pandering to the lowest common denominator to get votes.  Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan has the same Medicare plan - "Die Quickly."  Republicans need to consider what the country needs. Jobs! Jobs! Jobs!   
President Obama is succeeding without the help of his lefty “supporters” or hate-filled Republican detractors!  The future looks good.  He’s rising in the polls and people are beginning to open their eyes to the truth.
 


Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Women Can Never Vote Republican!

The GOP Attacks
AWoman's Right To
Choose An Abortion

2011 GOP Comprenhensive and Radical Assault

1.  Redefining Rape
2.  Abortion Audits
3.  Let Women Die
4.  Personhood
5.  Race/Sex Abortions
6.  Forced Ultrasounds
7.  Fetal Pain
8.  Heartbeat Bill
9.  Government Shutdown
10. Attack On Planned Parenthood

Monday, December 26, 2011

President Obama Fights For "Fairness"

A 1975 labor rule defined home care aides as “companions,” a class of workers that does not qualify for federal minimum wage and overtime protections. Ms. Coke’s lawyer, Craig Becker, argued before the Supreme Court in 2007 that the rule was supposed to apply only to occasional domestic workers, like baby sitters, not home care aides.  The justices ruled 9 to 0 that only Congress or the Labor Department could change the rule, not the court.
The Obama administration proposed regulations to give the nation’s nearly two million home care workers minimum wage and overtime protections.  The administration’s move calls for home care aides to be protected under the Fair Labor Standards Act, the nation’s main wage and hour law.   The White House said 92 percent of these workers were women, nearly 30 percent were African-American and 12 percent Hispanic. Nearly 40 percent rely on public benefits like Medicaid and food stamps.  While industry experts say an overwhelming majority are paid at least the minimum wage, many do not receive a time-and-a-half premium when they work more than 40 hours a week. Twenty-two states do not include home health care workers under their wage and hour laws.
Republican lawmakers and business groups criticized the proposed rules.
President Obama nominated Mr. Craig Becker to the National Labor Relations Board in 2010.  Senate Republicans blocked his confirmation vote, so President Obama installed him on the board through a recess appointment.
McConnell charged Obama of engaging in “unhelpful political opportunism.”  Imagine that.  The fact still remains that McConnell’s filibuster tactic and desire to make President Obama a one term president is the primary reason our nation’s economy has not turned around.
Compromise is the only way forward.  Constituents all over America are angry and don’t understand why Congress cannot sit down, hammer out our differences and have a solution that we all can support. Good honest people deserve a Congress that will put partisan politics aside in favor of the greater good.  More often than not, an ‘all or nothing’ attitude produces nothing.  An ‘all or nothing’ attitude is not what we need right now.  I don’t care who wrote the plan or the compromise.  The American people need a Congress that is willing to put all options on the table.


Source: 



Sunday, December 25, 2011

"Fired Up Ready To Go"

The next year holds a lot for us, in terms of the direction of this country. We must re-elect the President, return the House to Democratic hands, and expanding the Democratic majority in the Senate. This year will be our time to turn back the Tea Party tide and move our country to a more progressive direction with President Obama at the helm.

Please post, share, and tweet this video:

Extremely Dangerous - The Right is extremely powerful, extremely well-funded and just plain extreme. 


Friday, September 9, 2011

Congress - Pass The American Job Act Now!

  To create jobs, the President unveiled the American Jobs Act – nearly all of which is made up of ideas that have been supported by both Democrats and Republicans, and that Congress should pass right away to get the economy moving now.  The purpose of the American Jobs Act is simple: put more people back to work and put more money in the pockets of working Americans – without adding a dime to the deficit.  The President called on Congress to put aside partisanship in order to pass a plan he believes will jump-start job creation. The national unemployment rate is slightly above 9% and more than 14 million people are out of work.  President Obama challenged Congress to act quickly. He said, "The question is whether, in the face of an ongoing national crisis, we can stop the political circus and actually do something to help the economy."  House Speaker John Boehner said some of the President's proposals have "merit," but he hopes the President takes a look at some Republican ideas, which consist of tax cuts and cutting regulations at the Environmental Protection Agency and the National Labor Relations Board.

The time for action is NOW!

The American people will call - http://www.congress.org/register

The American people will write - http://www.congressmerge.com/onlinedb/

The American will will tell Congress if they support or oppose pending legislation: 
I heard that Congress wants to get rid of EPA. I did a search in POPVOX for EPA and found these 4 pending legislation - H.R. 2250, S. 231, S. 272, S.1392.  President Obama wants Action on all stalled Senate Bills.  You can now tell Congress that you support or oppose their legislation – https://www.popvox.com/
I did a search for jobs on POPVOX and found these 20 pending legislation – H.R. 72, H.R.132, H.R. 133, H.R. 199, H.R. 240, H.R. 244, H.R. 516, H.R. 563, H.R. 2021, H.R. 2315, H.R. 2772, H.Res. 72, S. 98, S. 155, S. 220, S. 228, S. 268, S. 1247, S. 1461, S. Res. 25.   President Obama wants Action on all stalled Senate Bills - https://www.popvox.com/
I did a search for small business tax relief on POPVOX and found these 2 pending legislation H.R. 417 and H.R. 1661.   President Obama wants Action on all stalled Senate Bills - https://www.popvox.com/
I did a search for infrastructure on POPVOX and found these 20 pending legislation H.R. 174, H.R. 402, H.R. 668, H.R. 1132, H.R. 1327, H.R. 1574, H.R. 1802, H.R. 1861, H.R. 2030, H.Res. 114, S. 240, S. 615, S. 652, S. 705, S. 826, S. 876, S. 936, S. 939, S. 942, S. 1436.  President Obama wants Action on all stalled Senate Bills -   https://www.popvox.com/
Another site to support or oppose legislation - http://votetocracy.com/


The American people wi



Thursday, August 25, 2011

Maxine, what the hell is wrong with you? Sometimes, it’s better to keep your trap shut.

And to all those African-Americans who have now taken to the streets to decry what they allege is Obama's lacking in the Black community, I still say we are the most unrelenting and unfair when it comes to our own. Bill Clinton (who cut welfare and food stamps) was proudly dubbed by many African-Americans (including 2 of Obama's biggest critics, Tavis Smiley and Cornel West) as the nation's "first Black President" but Obama (who is our REAL first Black President) is not Black enough! Really?

People want to shout about him not doing anything for Black America, but I guess increasing funding for HBCU's , expanding SBA programs for minority-owned businesses and increasing Pell Grants for low-income families means nothing. 
U.S. Rep. Frederica Wilson, D-Florida said federal stimulus spending had a clear effect on employment in her state. “I know that when the first stimulus package was passed, I was a member of the Florida Senate,” she said. “Thousands of teachers who were African Americans, police officers – their jobs were saved because the stimulus money came through to help. HBCUs were saved because the stimulus money came through. The Pell Grants were saved; all of these are issues of the African-American community,”

Now, I have already informed myself on what this President has done to help the American population in general, and African-Americans in particular.
Considering 2.7 years as the current timetable of his accomplishments, I would note that President Obama has reformed the health care system, which will provide subsidies for lower-income individuals who may not currently be covered (many who are AA), and also provides funding for badly needed community clinics, while doing away with pre-existing condition restrictions such as diabetes, high blood pressure, and coronary heart disease, all ailments suffered in alarming rates by members of the black community.

In addition, women will soon get birth control free of charge if insured, which means that women who were previously going to Planned Parenthood – because, even with insurance, they couldn’t afford the price of contraceptives – won’t need to anymore. This leaves women who are uninsured more resources to get birth control via Planned Parenthood. Plus, the stimulus saved the biggest health care provider to the black community, the various state Medicaid programs. As well, the President closed the Medicare donut hole in prescription drugs, reduced seniors’ prescription prices by 50% through the use of generic drugs, and sent $250 payments to seniors to make up to the lack of a COLA increase for two years now.

Further, the President literally, by his lonesome, saved the auto industry (while being criticized for it all the while), and in so doing saved many jobs held by African-Americans in the Midwest. No less, the Cash for Clunkers program provided needed cash to those with clunkers permanently parked or about to stop running.

Benefiting young people who are attempting to afford rising college tuition, President Obama increased Pell grants, supported funding community colleges at unprecedented levels, and reformed the private student loan programs to eliminate the middleman, thereby reducing loan interest rates. He also revamped the actual repayment of loan programs, reducing them to not more than 10% of income, while providing incentives to those who would choose community service careers. His credit card reform bill stopped the predatory practice of credit card companies gifting young people with the ability to ruin their credit at an early age (something that hits our community harder than most). He is also cracking down on for-profit educational enterprises, some of which charge outrageous fees for inferior post-secondary education. These same young people are now able to stay insured under their parents’ health insurance until the age of 26, whether they are enrolled in school part-time, full-time or not at all.

For the younger children, President Obama is responsible for signing a bill insuring healthier meals are served in our nation’s public schools, thereby addressing the issue of childhood obesity, a subject that affects more children in the African-American community than in others. Michelle Obama’s “Let’s Move” campaign is also addressing this serious issue. And we shouldn’t forget that early in his term, President Obama provided healthcare to 11 million additional children via the CHIP program previously vetoed by President Bush.

As states cut funding for public education, President Obama recently allowed waivers to states to do away with strict requirements set by No Child Left Behind, requirements which would have marked many of the public schools in low-income neighborhoods for closure. He has also invested in the development and replication of successful charter school programs, again focusing on low-income communities, while rewarding teachers who plan to teach in such areas.

President Obama has assisted all Americans, which includes African-American workers, by providing a payroll tax reduction (beneficial to workers who may or may not pay income tax), extended unemployment benefits, kept income tax low for the working class, and signed financial reform into law (which benefits our community largely because minorities were especially hard hit by the subprime mortgage crisis). There is also the up and coming Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, which promises to be on the side of consumers, and we as black people are certainly that!

I cannot forget that the first black president increased military pay and improved veterans’ health care, is drawing down troops in Iraq, and has set a timeline for our departure from Afghanistan.

Lastly, President Obama instituted reform of crack cocaine sentencing, and the deadly killer, the tobacco industry. And – lo and behold – black farmers were recently finally awarded their long awaited settlement!"Clearly, we can't sit and wait for Obama to knock on our doors to chat. Our elected
leadership will do what it will for as long as we allow it. Indeed, we can't "make them" fix the economy by asking them to do it. We can only get it to happen by organizing, educating, and mobilizing people from all walks of life to fight for justice in all places where it does not exist, from our nation's capital to our own neighborhoods."  So ask yourself this the next time you find yourself complaining about what your President has not done in the past 2 years, "what have I done in the past 2 years to help my President?" The answer just may surprise you and we just might find out that the real problem may not be all about the President's record it may be about our record as well!

Source:

Dear Rep. Barbara Lee, Chair of the Congressional Black Caucus, Can We Talk? - http://www.democratsforprogress.com/2011/08/18/dear-rep-barbara-lee-chair-of-the-congressional-black-caucus-can-we-talk/#.Tk1rW7qCLC6.facebook

An Obama Supporter Strikes Back: Points in Defense of the President - http://blog.buzzflash.com/node/12966




Wednesday, August 24, 2011

"There Is Something Wrong With Our Politics"

President Obama is the first president to deliver targeted tax relief to the working poor in many of our lifetimes.  If you work for a living, you pay payroll taxes – taxes that go to fund Social Security. The President got a 2-point cut for every American without impacting the Social Security trust fund (as Treasury was required to reimburse the lost revenue to the trust fund from its general fund).  This tax cut is targeted to the working poor and the middle class without resulting in a boondoggle for the ultra-rich.  Why is the targeting so important? Because people who benefit the most from it are also the most likely to spend any additional dollars in their pocket. Not to buy luxuries, but to buy everyday necessities – like shoes for the kids, getting their broken oven fixed or clothes they need for work. That’s the spending that also helps our economy going.

Contrary to the Republican mantra, however, the unemployed are not lazy. They are unemployed. Unemployment benefits give the unemployed the resources they need to stay afloat while they look for a job in a very tough economy, and every dollar in unemployment benefits adds $1.60 to the economy. This is even more effective than the payroll tax cut, because of the same principle – that people who really have nothing spend the money they get in unemployment benefits. That spending creates economic activity – businesses get to stay open, new employees can be hired (or the old ones kept) and it keeps the bottom from falling out of the economy.

Throughout his trip, the President proposed a series of common sense steps Congress can take immediately upon their return to Washington that will start rebuilding our economy. These include:
Extend the payroll tax cut so that middle class families have more money in their paychecks next year. If you've got more money in your paycheck, you're more likely to spend it, and that means businesses of all sizes will have more customers. They'll be in a better position to hire.
Extend unemployment benefits so that millions of workers who are still pounding the pavement looking for jobs can support their families.
Pass a bipartisan road construction bill. There are over a million construction workers out of work after the housing boom went bust, just as a lot of America needs rebuilding. We can put these workers back to work by rebuilding our roads and bridges and railways.
Pass the patent reform bill to help our innovators and entrepreneurs get their job creating ideas to market faster.
Pass the trade agreements that will help businesses sell more American-made goods and services to Asia and South America, supporting tens of thousands of jobs here at home.
Put our bright, talented and skilled veterans returning from Iraq and Afghanistan to work. The President has proposed several initiatives to make sure our veterans are able to navigate this difficult labor market and succeed in the civilian workforce, including the Returning Heroes and Wounded Warrior Tax Credits, and his challenge to the private sector to train or hire 100,000 unemployed veterans.
Until Republicans became the opposed-to-everything-simply-because-Obama-supports-it party, infrastructure investment used to be a nonpartisan issue. Sen. Kerry has already introduced an infrastructure bank bill along with Texas Republican Sen. Hutchinson and Virginia Democratic Sen. Mark Warner. Yet Republicans are holding it up.

Friday, July 15, 2011

A long-term approach to the budget crisis

It's hard to get a big deal done!
 
Now if we can only get the other 535 people we sent to Washington to follow his example.
 

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

America Doesn't Need Enemies As Long As Republicans Hold Office

America is not broke, it never was. The problem we have is that the rich have staged a bloodless coup and made off with all our money. They have used their powerful connections to put Republican puppets in place that will continue to deregulate, turn a blind eye, and create tax loopholes for them, so that they can keep their money and power and allow it to grow.   

Thursday, May 26, 2011

President Obama Addresses The British Parliament

No American President has stood on these steps to address Parliament.

Introduction:  "It has fallen to you to tackle economic turbulence at home, to protect the health of those without wealth, and to seek that precious balance between security which is too often threatened and human rights which is too often denied.

History is not the burden of any one man or woman alone.  But some are called to meet a special share of its challenges.  It is a duty that you discharge with a dignity, determination, and destinction that are widely admired.  Abraham Lincoln once observed that nearly all men can stand adversity.  But if you want to test a man's character, give him power." 

Monday, May 23, 2011

Freedom Riders - The PBS Movie

Freedom Riders: Watch the Full Film


The story behind a courageous band of civil rights activists called the Freedom Riders who in 1961 creatively challenged segregation in the American South.

A must watch family movie that helps children understand. 

Thursday, May 12, 2011

"Thug?" - You Decide

A White House invitation to Grammy-winning vegetarian Common sparks controversy at Fox News.  "Thug" - Is this a word that has been waiting in the background to be used?



"This guy is a thug," Rove said of the former Gap model. "And why they are inviting him to poetry night at the White House speaks volumes about President Obama and this White House staff. Who is asleep at the vetting desk?"  Sarah Palin and conservative blogs highlighted a poem Common wrote to protest the Iraq war. At issue, it appears, are the lines: "Burn a Bush cos’ for peace he no push no button/ Killing over oil and grease/ no weapons of destruction."  Some have construed it to appear as if Common, who was born Lonnie Rashid Lynn Jr., literally meant he wanted to set the former president on fire. Rove, the former adviser to George W. Bush, is one of those people.

Bill O'Reilly Says:  "Another Bad PR Move by the White House"



Part I - Common's The Rapper Controversy



Part II - Common's The Rapper Controversy

Monday, May 9, 2011

President Obama Quotes: "We Do Not Have Time For This Type of Silliness" - "I've Got Better Things To Do



Mr. President you've had to make some tough decisions.      

Thanks, for getting it right! 




Obama on bin Laden: The full "60 Minutes" interview



 
Hardball's Chris Matthews looks at a timeline of events surrounding what President Barack Obama was publically saying and doing while he was privately approving plans to get Osama bin Laden.
 

Monday, May 2, 2011

"Geronimo-E KIA" - The Gutsiest Call of Any President

"In God we trust. In Obama we have competent, honorable, and consistent leadership!"


In his nationally syndicated radio show, Limbaugh who has been one of Obama's fiercest critics, gave the commander-in-chief all the glory in the successful mission that ended the life of Public Enemy No.1. 

"Ladies and gentlemen, we need to open the program today by congratulating President Obama," Limbaugh said. "President Obama has done something extremely effective and when he does, this needs to be pointed out. President Obama has continued the Bush policies of keeping a military presence in the Middle East. He did not scrub the mission to get Bin Laden. In fact, it may be that President Obama single-handedly came up with the technique in order to pull this off.  "Our military wanted to go in there and just scorch the earth," Limbaugh continued, "but President Obama single-handedly understood what was at stake here. He alone understood the need to get DNA to prove the death ... it was President Obama single-handedly and alone who came up with the strategy that brought about the effective assassination of Osama bin Laden," the radio host said, concluding, "Thank God for President Obama."

Limbaugh then laughed at this report.  "Limbaugh Laughs At Media Who Report That He Lavished Praise On Obama Over Bin Laden Killing."


Dick Cheney Says 'Obama Deserves Credit' for Osama Bin Laden's Death.

President Obama on Death of Osama bin Laden - Video




Ed  talks about the death of the FBI's most wanted terrorist, Osama bin Laden, and how President Obama was able to make it happen.


Sunday, May 1, 2011

2011 Correspondent Dinner - Trump Gets Booed

In the days leading up to the dinner, many were unimpressed that the Washington Post even invited Trump as their guest. Salon's Alex Pareene asked, "Why would the Washington Post, as an institution, officially align themselves with a living freak show?" It turns out the anti-Trump sentiment continued all the way to the red carpet. The Wrap reported that Trump was booed on arrival at Hilton. And things got worse from there.


In “Celebrity Apprentice,” Mr. Obama told Mr. Trump, teeth flashing, “the men’s cooking team did not impress the judges from Omaha steaks, but you recognized that this was a lack of leadership, so you fired Gary Busey.”  “These,” Mr. Obama said, “are the kinds of decisions that would keep me up at night. Well-handled, sir. Well-handled.”


Video of Obama's speech.



 
 Video of Seth Meyers' speech.

 



Source:  http://news.yahoo.com/s/atlantic/20110501/en_atlantic/obamameyerroaststrumpwhcadinner37223_1

Saturday, April 30, 2011

“I think what we have in Washington right now working on Medicare are a bunch of clowns”

After 10 days of trying to sell constituents on their plan to overhaul Medicare, House Republicans in multiple districts appear to be increasingly on the defensive, facing worried and angry questions from voters and a barrage of new attacks from Democrats and their allies.


Representative Paul D. Ryan of Wisconsin, the Republican chairman of the House Budget Committee, proposed a 2012 budget that would reduce Medicare spending sharply over the coming decades by switching to a system in which seniors would receive vouchers for buying insurance coverage, rather than having their care paid for directly by the government.  Rather than change Medicare to a voucher program, Mr. Obama proposes broad reforms that he says would save hundreds of billions of dollars over the next 12 years and more than $1 trillion in the following decade. The health care law that Mr. Obama helped push through Congress contains a laundry list of pilot projects and other efforts mean to rein in spending.

Here’s how Medicaid currently works: Washington sets minimum requirements for who can enroll and what services must be covered, and pays half of the bill in the richest states and three-quarters of the bill in the poorest state. If people are poor enough to qualify and a medical service recommended by their doctors is covered, the state and federal governments will pick up the tab, with minimal co-payments by the beneficiaries. That is a big plus for enrollees’ health, and a healthy population is good for everyone. But the costs are undeniably high.

Enter the House Republicans’ budget proposal. Instead of a commitment to insure as many people as meet the criteria, it would substitute a set amount per state. Starting in 2013, the grant would probably equal what the state would have received anyway through federal matching funds, although that is not spelled out. After that, the block grant would rise each year only at the national rate of inflation, with adjustments for population growth.

There are several problems with that, starting with that inflation-pegged rate of growth, which could not possibly keep pace with the rising cost of medical care. The Congressional Budget Office estimates that federal payments would be 35 percent lower in 2022 than currently projected and 49 percent lower in 2030.  To make up the difference, states would probably have to cut payments to doctors, hospitals or nursing homes; curtail eligibility; reduce benefits; or increase their own payments for Medicaid. The problems do not end there. If a bad economy led to a sharp jump in unemployment, a state’s grant would remain the same. Nor would the block grant grow fast enough to accommodate expensive advances in medicine, rising demand for long-term care, or unexpected health care needs in the wake of epidemics or natural disasters. This would put an ever-tightening squeeze on states, forcing them to drop enrollees, cut services or pump up their own contributions.

This is not the way to go. The real problem is not Medicaid. Contrary to most perceptions, it is a relatively efficient program — with low administrative costs, a high reliance on managed care and much lower payments to providers than other public and private insurance.

The real problem is soaring medical costs. The Ryan plan does little to address that. The health care law, which Republicans have vowed to repeal, seeks to reform the entire system to deliver quality care at lower cost.  To encourage that process, President Obama recently proposed a simplified matching rate for Medicaid, which would reward states for efficiencies and automatically increase federal payments if a recession drives up enrollments and state costs. The president’s approach is better for low-income Americans and for state budgets as well.



Source:  http://www.nytimes.com/2011/05/01/opinion/01sun1.html?_r=1&ref=todayspaper
 

White racism was thought to have been slain on November 4, 2008.

In an era of racism without racists, the Tea Party GOP Birther brigands provide one more lesson in the permanence of the social evil known as White privilege.  To point: Imagine if Sarah Palin, a person who wallows in mediocrity and wears failure as a virtue, were any race other than White. Would a black (or Latino or Asian or Hispanic) woman with Palin's credentials have gotten a tenth as far? Let's entertain another counter-factual: If the Tea Party and their supporters were a group of black or brown folk, who showed up with guns at events attended by the President, threatening nullification and secession, and engaging in treasonous talk, how many seconds would pass before they were locked up and taken out by the F.B.I. as threats to the security of the State?

Ten Ways That the Birthers Are an Object Lesson in White Privilege 



1. Just as Pat Buchanan did with Justice Sotomayor, the Birthers have sullied President Obama as being an unqualified, "affirmative action" candidate. His academic and professional accomplishments are irrelevant. The fact that he won an open and honest election are unimportant. We should know at this point that the life successes of people of color (and to a lesser degree some women) are always questionable and suspect when viewed through the gaze of Whiteness (and sexism). White men are never burdened with the question or doubt of being qualified for any job, at any time, or any place. Their greatness and ability is a fact not a question, never is it to be interrogated. This self-delusion exists despite the fact that white men have historically been the greatest beneficiaries of unearned privilege in the history of the United States. Their mediocrity has been rewarded at every turn.

2. Naturally, the President should be White. Of course, the leaders of trade and industry should be White. The natural order of things equates being White and male with having natural authority and ability--a set of traits which exist without question or doubt regardless of competence or ability. Whiteness deems the inverse for people of color. As President Obama has learned, by mere fact of his birth, and coincidence of the color of his skin, his legitimacy will always be in doubt.


3. Whiteness equals authority. Thus, any White person, at any time, can question the accomplishments of a person of color. The most mediocre of White people, the sum total of whose life has amounted to 1/100th of President Obama's successes (or that of other people of color) can feel legitimate in questioning how the latter came to find their "unnatural" position in the social hierarchy. Whiteness is an advantage in the marathon of life. Through this unearned head-start a psychic wage is paid, one that allows any White person, anywhere, to question how a black or brown person came to be ahead in life for such a thing can never happen in a "just" world. Whiteness allows white folks to not feel embarrassed or ashamed in asking such impolitic and rude questions.

4. Whiteness is a get-out-of-jail-free card. Whiteness is also the freedom to be utterly unreflective regarding the foolishness and madness of one's deeds and statements as long as the target of such madness is the Other. The Birthers, Buchanan, Trump, Palin, Bachmann, Limbaugh, Breibart and Beck engage in routine crazy talk. But Whiteness allows them to be taken seriously (at least at first) for White privilege allows the luxury of being utterly unreflective in most things.

5. White privilege is freedom from accountability. Donald Trump, Pat Buchanan, and the rank and file Birther brigands will not face any consequences for their ill deeds in slandering the President of the United States, or for openly fomenting sedition and rebellion against the government of the United States.

6. The Obama birth certificate debacle has exposed how to be truly American a person must be White. This is one of the central unspoken (and widely accepted) truths of race in America. For example, Sarah Palin channels The Blood Countess Erzebet Bathory and bathes in this bigotry with all of her "real America" talk. Although it is a lie in the face of history, because America is a mulatto culture where the majority of black folks (and of course our Native American brothers and sisters) were in the U.S. many decades (if not at least a century) before the great unwashed masses of white ethnics arrived here, Whiteness still imagines African Americans and other people of color as semi-permanent outsiders. In total, to be American is to be Black. The Birthers in their racial heliocentrism--where to be White is to be the center of the world--are repulsed by this fact.

7. White privilege is the ability to be "normal" and "invisible." Whiteness is never interrogated. Consequently, the White nationalism of the Tea Party GOP and its embrace of the Birthers has been long able to deflect the charge that they are racist or tinged by yearnings for a return to "the good old days" when "those people" knew their place. Because Whiteness is invisibility it works like chaff to obscure the obvious fact that much of the opposition to President Obama has always been about his race and not about policy. The signs at the Tea Parties are ignored or explained away, the racist emails laughed at and/or minimized as trite and silly, and bigoted White folks who display their bonafides whenever given the opportunity are labeled as outliers. There is slippage in naming the White racism of the Birthers as such because so many are invested in denying the semi-permanency of White supremacy in America, a sentiment that still lingers decades after the end of Jim and Jane Crow.

8. Whiteness is the default position for viewing the world. It is a cognitive map and means of processing reality. The election of Barack Obama upsets this world view. Many of those drunken on Whiteness and invested in the version of events that are offered by the White Racial Frame really do think they are operating as a "principled" opposition or that they are "colorblind," when in reality race, and fears of the racial Other, are driving their behavior. Here, Whiteness and white privilege work as pathologies that make a person immune to the real motivations driving their anti-Obama derangement syndrome.

9. Whiteness is the ability and power to reframe reality. Despite whatever documents or evidence that President Obama may offer to silence the growly, rabid hostility of the Birthers and the White Conservative Soul, the terrain for debate will be continually shifted. This is a function of ideology plus partisanship mixed together and combined in the Right-wing echo chamber. This reframing of reality is also born of the narcissism that is Whiteness, for the world is what they/he/she says it is.

10. White privilege is also surprising. Many black and brown folks (as well as others) have been saying from day one that the opposition to President Obama, and the silliness suggested by the conspiranoid Birthers in particular, have been motivated by racism. Those voices were often silenced and attacked as being too sensitive and wedded to some outmoded notion of political correctness. The pundit classes have finally seen the obvious: race is the driving force behind Trump and the Tea Party GOP's obsession with Obama's birth certificate. When those not White said as much they were dismissed. Lesson for us all: Despite our protests and the evidence that black and brown folks may bring to the table, racism does not exist until good White folks say that it does.

Source:  Chauncey DeVega -
http://www.alternet.org/story/150791/10_ways_that_the_birthers_are_an_object_lesson_in_white_privilege_?page=1

Thursday, April 28, 2011

When They Tell You "It's Not Racial" Don't Believe Them

"Show me your papers!"

Major Blackard, then just 19 years old, dug into his trousers in search of his wallet. He padded his jacket, but could not find his billfold.  "Sir, I done left my wallet..." Blackard said. Before he could finish his sentence, the young man was posted against the brick wall, cuffed and taken to the St. Louis city jail. Unable to prove his identity, he would spend the next 21 days in a cramped, musty cell. That's where his older brother Matt found him, beaten and bloodied. Matt returned with Major's employer later that day, wallet and identification card in hand, to post bond.  The year was 1899. Major Blackard was my great, great grandfather.

The real crime, as Pulitzer Prize winning author Doug Blackmon points on in his seminal work Slavery by Any Other Name, was that my grandfather was a colored man in America.

This morning, as White House staffers released copies of the president's long form birth certificate, I couldn't shake the feeling that something very ugly was going on. For the first time in recorded history, a sitting president of the United States found it necessary to produce his original birth certificate for public inspection. Not once, in 235 years, have we ever demanded proof that our president was born on American soil.

In a stunning display of unchecked ego, Donald Trump quickly hosted a news conference, during which he took credit for forcing President Obama's hand. The sometime real estate developer, socialite, author and television personality went on to caution onlookers to let "experts" examine the document. Lest the president continue perpetrating was Trump has called potentially the "biggest fraud in American history."  For weeks, the thrice married, comb-over construction magnate has enthralled news reporters with his apocalyptic ranting. Trump openly questioned whether President Obama belonged in the White House, a boardroom, or even an Ivy League lecture hall.

And we let him.

We used all manner of excuses to justify giving Trump as much oxygen as he could suck up. Rarely, if ever, did we press him to produce a shard of evidence to substantiate his wild claims. We smiled gingerly as he all but called us stupid sycophants who were in cahoots with an illegitimate president. We allowed him to hold court on issues on which he clearly has no knowledge and no credibility, beyond the limo ride briefings he apparently receives from his merry band of "yes men."

Trump didn't just want the birth record. He wants the president to release his college transcripts. "How did such a bad student get into Harvard?," Trump keeps asking. The implication is the Barack Obama was the beneficiary of affirmative action and took the place of a more qualified white student. Apparently, graduating magna cum laude from the nation's most prestigious law school and being named editor of the Harvard Law Review -- the institution's highest student honor -- is not enough for him.

It never is for people like Trump.

"If he gets off the phone, or gets off his basketball court or whatever he's doing at the time," Trump said. "I mean he should be focused on OPEC and getting those prices down." 

When they tell you this isn't racial, don't believe them. This controversy was constructed solely as a way to de-legitimize the presidency of a black man. Those who question the location of Barack Obama's birth are the very same people who would pack up and move out of the neighborhood if someone like me moved in next door.

When they say they want to take their country back, they mean from us.

According to a recent Public Policy Polling survey, a stunning 51 percent of Republicans believe the president wasn't born in the United States. In Mississippi, nearly half of all Republicans believe interracial marriage should be illegal. If they had their way, not only would Obama not be president, he never would have been born.  That's how far we have not come.

Some 112 years after my grandfather was snatched from a street corner in the central west end section of St. Louis, it seems we still need to prove our right to be here.  I thought we were better than this.


Source:  By Goldie Taylor - http://www.thegrio.com/politics/why-obama-shouldnt-have-had-to-show-his-papers.php?page=2

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Will "Birther Questions" Be Put To Rest?

The White House on Wednesday morning released the president's long form birth certificate (pdf) in an attempt to put "birther" questions to rest.


"The President believed the distraction over his birth certificate wasn't good for the country. It may have been good politics and good T.V., but it was bad for the American people and distracting from the many challenges we face as a country," White House Communications Director Dan Pfeiffer said in a statement.  The president had released his certificate of live birth in 2008, but many "birthers" said the absence of a long form birth certificate prompted questions about Obama's birthplace of Hawaii. In recent weeks potential GOP presidential candidate Donald Trump has brought birther questions into the forefront of the media. 
"At a time of great consequence for this country--when we should be debating how we win the future, reduce our deficit, deal with high gas prices, and bring stability to the Middle East, Washington, DC, was once again distracted by a fake issue," Pfeiffer said. "The President's hope is that with this step, we can move on to debating the bigger issues that matter to the American people and the future of the country."

Obama admitted at a White House press conference following the document's release Wednesday morning that he's been both amused and puzzled by the degree to which his place of birth has become an issue.  The president echoed Pfeiffer's statements saying that Americans and their representatives need to come together to solve issues such as how to "invest in our future" while tackling the federal deficit and federal debt: 
But we're not going to be able to do it if we are distracted. We're not going to be able to do it if we spend time vilifying each other. We're not going to be able to do it if we just make stuff up and pretend that facts are not facts. We're not going to be able to solve our problems if we get distracted by sideshows and carnival barkers.  Though the president didn't mention Trump by name, Obama noted that when he announced his deficit plan this month, his birth certificate, not our country's economic future, dominated the news that week.


Monday, April 25, 2011

Trump Is A Liar

Donald Trump is proving himself to be a scam artist.  I have one question - Can Donald Trump be sued for defamation of character?  Or, can he be sued for anything?  Trump attracts media attention because he's suppose to be a man of character/business man.  As Trump rants about President's Obama citizentry, he's proving himself to be a shrewd manipulative liar.     http://www.cnn.com/2011/POLITICS/04/25/birthers.obama.hawaii/index.html?hpt=C1