Volume I. Issue XXVIII.
 


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Obama wants to overhaul education system from 'cradle to career'
CNN

President Obama says the decline of education is "unacceptable for our children."WASHINGTON (CNN) -- President Obama began to flesh out the details of one of his signature campaign promises Tuesday, outlining his plan for a major overhaul of the country's education system "from the cradle up through a career."
President Obama says the decline of education is "unacceptable for our children."

President Obama says the decline of education is "unacceptable for our children."

"We have let our grades slip, our schools crumble, our teacher quality fall short and other nations outpace us," Obama said in an address to the U.S. Hispanic Chamber of Commerce. "The time for finger-pointing is over. The time for holding ourselves accountable is here."

"The relative decline of American education is untenable for our economy, unsustainable for our democracy and unacceptable for our children, and we cannot afford to let it continue," he said.

The president outlined a five-tier reform plan, starting with increased investments in ...
Read More Click Here
 
Obama lifts Bush restrictions on stem cell research
David Alexander
Reuters US Online Report Politics News

President Barack Obama lifted restrictions on federal funding of human embryonic stem cell research on Monday, angering abortion opponents but cheering those who believe the study could produce treatments for many diseases.

"We will lift the ban on federal funding for promising embryonic stem cell research," Obama said to vigorous applause at a White House gathering.

"We will also vigorously support scientists who pursue this research. And we will aim for America to lead the world in the discoveries it one day may yield." ...
Read More Click Here
 
Black Caucus Presses Obama on Priorities
By BEN EVANS
The Associated Press

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Barack Obama reassured members of the Congressional Black Caucus that he's on their side and will do what he can to support the group's left-leaning agenda, lawmakers said Thursday after an hour-long session at the White House.

Nearly all the group's 42 members attended. Noticeably absent was Illinois Sen. Roland Burris, Obama's replacement who is fending off calls to resign.

The lawmakers — all Democrats — said the reception was a welcome change from the tenure of former President George W. Bush, who held several cordial meetings with black lawmakers but rarely agreed with them on substance.

"There is no comparison," said Rep. Elijah Cummings of Maryland. "(Obama) basically assured us that having been a member of the Congressional Black Caucus ... that he gets the issues and will do everything he can to work with us."

Lawmakers said they presented Obama with a wish-list covering... Read More Click Here

 

Who's Your Daddy? Steele was smacked back into place by Limbaugh

“Michael Steele, you are head of the RNC; you are not head of the Republican Party”—Rush Limbaugh, talk host

It has been about a month after the first Republican Party’s first African-American chairman Michael Steele took his first initial victory lap around America’s major media outlets, proclaiming the rebirth of the party of Lincoln.

He tried to put a bolder, hipper image on the tired old bastion of white conservatism, saying it was going to be more inclusive, more accepting in its recruiting of minorities and women. He was going to breathe new life into the demoralized GOP.

Following his narrow victory into the top post of the RNC, Steele should have known that his “house Negro” stance was not going to be swallowed by the die-hard Christian right or the staunch bigots who never liked anything dark unless it was the chocolate lawn jockey at the edge of their driveways or their narrow-butted corn-silk haired wives with their bronzed Florida tans.

Actor George Hamilton’s orange skin hue was too close to the real thing for them. And now Steele was attempting to shanghai the leadership of one of the last citadels of white political supremacy. No damn way!... Read More Click Here

   
More TV Ads Project Images of Racial Harmony
By TODD LEWAN
AP National Writer

Ever see an inner-city schoolyard filled with white, Asian and black teens shooting hoops? Or middle-aged white and Latino men swigging beer and watching the Super Bowl on their black neighbor's couch? Or Asians and Latinos dancing the night away in a hip-hop club?

All it takes is a television.

Yes, that mesmerizing mass purveyor of aspiration, desire and self-awareness regularly airs commercials these days that show Americans of different races and ethnicities interacting in integrated schools, country clubs, workplaces and homes, bonded by their love of the products they consume.

Think about one of Pepsi's newest spots, "Refresh Anthem," which debuted during the Super Bowl. The ad, which features Bob Dylan and hip-hop producer will.i.am, is a ... Read More Click Here

 
Pop Star Stevie Wonder Celebrated at White House
By PHILIP ELLIOTT
Associated Press Writer

President Barack Obama presents Stevie Wonder with the Library of Congress Gershwin Award.

WASHINGTON (AP) -- President Barack Obama thanked Stevie Wonder for creating "a style that's uniquely American" as he presented the singer-songwriter the nation's highest award for pop music.

Obama, who called Wonder the soundtrack of his youth, gave the star the Library of Congress' Gershwin Prize for Popular Song during an East Room tribute Wednesday that featured Tony Bennett, Martina McBride and Wonder himself. The president joked that the group was "the most accomplished Stevie Wonder cover band in history."

Wonder was emotional at times, thanking Obama for the award and reflecting on what ... Read More Click Here

 
What President Obama Learned From The Wire
By: Casey Gane-McCalla
Jack & Jill Politics

Its officially been one year that The Wire has been off the air. Erin Evans over at The Root has a good article on Wire withdrawal. Still we have to remember that one of The Wire’s biggest fans, Barack Obama is now running the country and is caught up in his own drama with situations and characters so interesting and complex it could’ve been written by David Simon. Here are some things that Barack Obama could’ve learned from The Wire. If the world was David Simon’s Baltimore, who would Obama be? Who would be Clay Davis and McNulty?

Foreign Policy

If Obama was watching The Wire carefully, he could learn a lot about foreign policy from two of the major characters from the first three seasons, Avon Barksdale and his cohort, Stringer Bell. While Avon was always willing to go to war for territory and fight over pride, Stringer was more pragmatic, realizing that war was bad for business. Like Obama, Stringer was willing to negotiate with his enemies, including Proposition Joe and Marlo Stansfield. Rather than war with other drug dealers over territory, Stringer built an alliance of huslters from both the east and west side to share a common package and economic interest.

Obama could take Stringer’s role and avoid wars unless they are absolutely necessary, negotiate with countries previously hostile to the US and build alliances with other countries. He should not however be shady and conniving, the characteristics which led to Stringer’s death.

Drugs

Addiction and distribution of drugs have played a big role in all 5 seasons of The Wire. If anything is clear from The Wire, it is that... Read More Click Here

 








Before You Buy, Study Rules for New Tax Credits
By Michelle Singletary (Washington Post)

http://intheknowchicago.com/house1.12.jpgI hosted an online discussion recently and one of the participants was particularly perturbed because he had purchased a new car on President's Day, Feb. 16.

Had he waited just one day, he would have qualified for a tax break that allows new car buyers to deduct state, local sales and excise taxes on their federal returns.

The deduction is available only for taxpayers who purchased new vehicles on or after Feb. 17 -- when President Barack Obama signed the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, better known as the economic stimulus plan.

"I feel duped," the person wrote during the chat. "The reason I decided on new versus used was because of the tax credit. I thought I would qualify . . . as the dealer told me. I would have waited a day to save the $2,000."

Duped?

I don't think so. It's not the ... Read More Click Here

 

Helping Laid-Off Workers Pay for Health Insurance
By Michelle Singletary

http://www.loc.gov/bookfest/2008/authors/images/Singletary.jpgThere's one Web site you need to check often if you intend to benefit from the many consumer provisions in the stimulus plan.

That Web site is http://www.irs.gov. It's essential because several key provisions in the stimulus package aimed at individuals and families are going to be interpreted and implemented by the Internal Revenue Service.

For example, the recovery law includes changes to the health-benefit provisions of the Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act, which is commonly referred to as COBRA. The new law includes a temporary COBRA premium reduction.

If you have questions about the COBRA provisions in the new law, go to the IRS site, and in the search field on the home page, type American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009. This will take you to a page with highlights of the tax-related provisions in the new law.

Under COBRA, employers are required by law to offer the option of continuing your health insurance for up to 18 months. Coverage can be extended up to... Read More Click Here

 



Rihanna, The Baffled Beauty
By Doris Allimadi

After they had been battered, I found that Black women, and in particular
women of African extraction, were less likely to seek help and outside support
for fear of stigmatization ....Whereas I do not condone a man putting his hands
on a woman, other than in love, Rihanna made a decision for herself; however
misguided the rest of the world may think this decision is, it is her body, her
choice. Who made her the spokesperson for every battered woman in this
world? Why lay such responsibility on the shoulders of this young baffled
beauty?

Black Star News columnist says no matter how baffling Rihanna's decision seems, it's not uncommon

I wonder why shockwaves are travelling through the world because Rihanna was battered and bruised by her boyfriend Chris Brown.

Everybody seems to be bewildered as to why after suffering such horrific injuries she would choose to reunite with him within a few weeks of this assault, as has been reported. A woman being battered by an abusive partner is nothing new, and neither is a woman... Read More Click Here

 

Simmons to Pay $40K a Month in Child Support
By The Associated Press

Russell Simmons is seen with his daughters Aoki (center) and Ming at the recent 40th NAACP Image Awards.

LOS ANGELES - Court records show Russell Simmons has agreed to pay $40,000 a month in child support. Los Angeles Superior Court judge Marjorie Steinberg signed off on an agreement Thursday giving Kimora Lee Simmons sole custody of the couple's two daughters, nine-year-old Ming and six-year-old Aoki. The couple's divorce was finalized in January. Kimora Lee Simmons filed for divorce in March 2008, citing irreconcilable differences.

Russell Simmons, the 51-year-old hip-hop mogul, was granted... Read More Click Here

 
JEREMIAH WRIGHT - 'BARACK'S NAME AIN'T JESUS':
Rev. speaks about former mentee during speech in Selma to mark voting rights march.

Rev. Jeremiah WrightPresident Barack Obama's longtime minister, the Rev. Jeremiah Wright, warned the more than 700 people attending his speech in Selma, Alabama that the president is not a savior.

"Barack's name ain't Jesus. Barack ain't gonna improve your child's reading score. There are things we've got to do on our own," he said Thursday, addressing a mass meeting that kicked off the 44th anniversary celebration of the 1965 Selma-to-Montgomery voting rights march.

Speaking in a brief interview with The Associated Press before the speech, Wright smiled at the mention the nation's first black president.

"He's like any other... Read More Click Here

 
Michael Jackson Seeks Comeback in London
By JILL LAWLESS
Associated Press Writer

LONDON (AP) -- Michael Jackson is making his first live appearance in years, but will it still be a thriller?

The King of Pop is due to meet the press at a London concert arena this week to announce the mother of all comebacks - a string of concerts that organizers hope will net the financially troubled star millions.

But after years of erratic behavior, health fears, child-abuse allegations and money woes, is the once-golden Jackson brand tarnished beyond repair?

"Because of what's happened to him and how he's lived his life over the last 20 years, he's made it very difficult for people to out themselves as Michael Jackson fans," British music writer and broadcaster John Aizlewood said Wednesday. "These concerts are a huge opportunity for ... Read More Click Here
 
 




MOMMY, HE HIT ME!: Angela De Joseph details her story of abuse.
Angela de Joseph

Angela de JosephI don't know what happened between Chris Brown and Robyn (Rhianna) Fenty. But, I know what happened to me.

I got a call one day from a family friend. I remember having a crush on him when I was a teenager. I have always been a romantic idealist, so I thought the fact we had met in New York twenty years earlier and we were both now living in Los Angeles and single, meant something.

This is a long story. As a matter of fact, it is the subject of a feature film script I wrote called "What's Done In The Dark." So I won't go into all the details. I'll just give you the highlights…well the lowlights that is…

We began dating. Our families were elated. He was a double Ivy league graduate. He was part of that exclusive club of Black men, like my oldest brother, that had gone to Harvard. There were lavender roses; there was a rather large diamond engagement ring and a wedding to plan.

He called every day. Actually he called me ALL day. He wanted to know where I was and what I was doing ALL the time. He wanted to be with me ALL the time. I thought it was love. I didn't know it was control.

The first time he flipped out on me, I thought it was my fault. The second time it was worse and I thought something was very wrong. He said it was a ... Read More Click Here

 
Who Let Alan Keyes Out Of The Crazy House?
Black Star News Editorial

Keyes: Stop Obama or U.S. will cease to exist Click Image Below to View or Click Here



Where do the Republicans get these kinds of characters?

Rush Limbaugh; Sean Hannity; Bobby Jindal; and, not to be outdone, Alan Keyes.

It’s a painful thing to grow up thinking that you’re brilliant, a genius, because your mother said you were, only to discover later in life that you’re not so bright after all.

It’s even more painful when you encounter someone who is light years smarter than you are, and it drives you off the cliff. Such is the unfortunate experience of a familiar perennial candidate, the so-called "ambassador" Alan Keyes.

In a recent interview, which is now available on YouTube, Keyes revealed the pain that’s been eating up at his insides. It’s a wonder that he was able to emit so much hatred without foaming at the mouth.

"Obama is a radical communist. And I think it's becoming  …
Read More Click Here

 













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