August 31, 2008

Blog Safari #10


Sometimes it is difficult to comment or read all of the unique and interesting blog posts out in the afrosphere. That is why we use this 'Blog Safari' concept. I hope you enjoy these blog post referrals:
Let us know if you come across any remarkable posts that should be shared in our next Blog Safari!

August 30, 2008

Rumor: Sarah Palin is Grandmother, not Mother of Young Trig

Drumbeats from Sagacious Rambling tell us about rumors circulating online about whether Governor Sarah Palin is young Trig's mother ... grandmother!

According to comments from classmates and other members of the community Bristol Palin, the governor's 16 year old daughter was out of school during what would have been the last trimester of the governor's pregnany due to a bad case of mono. A case so severe, according to the Palin family, Bristol missed nearly 5 months of school. Her own staff had their doubts back in March.

The story is that Sarah Palin's water broke while she was attending a conference in Texas. She then proceeded to give a 30-minute speech before taking an 11-12 hour flight home to Alaska to give birth.

So, what is really happening here? Villagers are left to wonder if Palin is simply a mother trying to protect the reputation and image of her family or is this a mother who simply wants to protect the image of her family or is Sarah the Barracuda using this pregnancy to bolster her career and win admiration from Rush Limbaugh, PUMAs and other right-wing wackos of the Republican Party by claiming the child as her own and choosing not to terminate the pregnancy knowing the child would have Down's Syndrome?

Initially, I thought that Palin's selection was Vice President was comparable to Dan Quayle. However, on second thought, perhaps Palin is more comparable to Tom Eagleton. You may recall that Tom Eagleton only lasted 17 days as the vice presidential nominee with George McGovern in 1972. I wonder if Palin will last that long?

The video below was taken in February 2008 ... two months before Trig was born. Does Gov. Palin look pregnant?


Obama Photo Gallery

I encourage all Villagers to check out some remarkable photos of Barack Obama from Iowa through the general election. These wonderful shots of Obama's secret service and his supporters were taken by Scout Tufankjian. She is a photographer based in Brooklyn, New York.

August 29, 2008

Sarah Palin is McCain's Running Mate

I have not heard of Gov. Palin until this morning. Have you heard of her before? I suppose that the Republicans hope that this shakes up the political election and gives them some of the 'change' mantra that Obama dominates today.

Props to the folks here and here that had the foresight to create websites promoting Gov. Sarah Palin (R-Alaska) as a vice-presidential candidate. Here is a video with some background on Gov. Palin.




Gov. Palin is a mother of 5 children. Her youngest child was born with Downs Syndrome. One of her oldest sons enlisted in the military last year. She is a pro-life candidate. She played on the Alaska state basketball championship in 1982. She graduated from the University of Idaho. She was a sportscaster on television in Alaska before serving on a city council and becoming mayor of a town with 7,500 citizens. She lost her bid to become lieutenant-governor in Alaska a few years ago.

She rebounded from that defeat with a victory in 2006 in her race to become Alaska governor. Not many Republicans were winning in 2006 ... so it says something that she won the race in her state. She has a 87% favorable rating in her state.

It appears that McCain is making effort to bring out the women's vote ... and perhaps seek support from Hillary Clinton voters that don't support Barack Obama. However, I think that many of those supporters were brought back to their Democratic home during the Democratic Convention in Denver this past week.

It appears that this is a gamble being made by John McCain to change the conversation. Please share your thoughts on this VP selection. What say u about Sarah Palin?

Barack Obama Democratic Convention Speech (video, text)






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Barack Obama did a remarkable job in his speech, 'The American Promise'. He was strong and forceful in making the case for his presidency. He directly challenged John McCain's temperament and fitness to be our nation's leader. I watched his speech with such a sense of pride. I look forward to an Obama presidency ... how about you?!

Here is the text of his speech:

To Chairman Dean and my great friend Dick Durbin; and to all my fellow citizens of this great nation;

With profound gratitude and great humility, I accept your nomination for the presidency of the United States.
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Let me express my thanks to the historic slate of candidates who accompanied me on this journey, and especially the one who traveled the farthest - a champion for working Americans and an inspiration to my daughters and to yours -- Hillary Rodham Clinton. To President Clinton, who last night made the case for change as only he can make it; to Ted Kennedy, who embodies the spirit of service; and to the next Vice President of the United States, Joe Biden, I thank you. I am grateful to finish this journey with one of the finest statesmen of our time, a man at ease with everyone from world leaders to the conductors on the Amtrak train he still takes home every night.

To the love of my life, our next First Lady, Michelle Obama, and to Sasha and Malia - I love you so much, and I'm so proud of all of you.

Four years ago, I stood before you and told you my story - of the brief union between a young man from Kenya and a young woman from Kansas who weren't well-off or well-known, but shared a belief that in America, their son could achieve whatever he put his mind to.

It is that promise that has always set this country apart - that through hard work and sacrifice, each of us can pursue our individual dreams but still come together as one American family, to ensure that the next generation can pursue their dreams as well.

That's why I stand here tonight. Because for two hundred and thirty two years, at each moment when that promise was in jeopardy, ordinary men and women - students and soldiers, farmers and teachers, nurses and janitors -- found the courage to keep it alive.

We meet at one of those defining moments - a moment when our nation is at war, our economy is in turmoil, and the American promise has been threatened once more.

Tonight, more Americans are out of work and more are working harder for less. More of you have lost your homes and even more are watching your home values plummet. More of you have cars you can't afford to drive, credit card bills you can't afford to pay, and tuition that's beyond your reach.

These challenges are not all of government's making. But the failure to respond is a direct result of a broken politics in Washington and the failed policies of George W. Bush.

America, we are better than these last eight years. We are a better country than this.

This country is more decent than one where a woman in Ohio, on the brink of retirement, finds herself one illness away from disaster after a lifetime of hard work.

This country is more generous than one where a man in Indiana has to pack up the equipment he's worked on for twenty years and watch it shipped off to China, and then chokes up as he explains how he felt like a failure when he went home to tell his family the news.

We are more compassionate than a government that lets veterans sleep on our streets and families slide into poverty; that sits on its hands while a major American city drowns before our eyes.

Tonight, I say to the American people, to Democrats and Republicans and Independents across this great land - enough! This moment - this election - is our chance to keep, in the 21st century, the American promise alive. Because next week, in Minnesota, the same party that brought you two terms of George Bush and Dick Cheney will ask this country for a third. And we are here because we love this country too much to let the next four years look like the last eight. On November 4th, we must stand up and say: "Eight is enough."

Now let there be no doubt. The Republican nominee, John McCain, has worn the uniform of our country with bravery and distinction, and for that we owe him our gratitude and respect. And next week, we'll also hear about those occasions when he's broken with his party as evidence that he can deliver the change that we need.

But the record's clear: John McCain has voted with George Bush ninety percent of the time. Senator McCain likes to talk about judgment, but really, what does it say about your judgment when you think George Bush has been right more than ninety percent of the time? I don't know about you, but I'm not ready to take a ten percent chance on change.

The truth is, on issue after issue that would make a difference in your lives - on health care and education and the economy - Senator McCain has been anything but independent. He said that our economy has made "great progress" under this President. He said that the fundamentals of the economy are strong. And when one of his chief advisors - the man who wrote his economic plan - was talking about the anxiety Americans are feeling, he said that we were just suffering from a "mental recession," and that we've become, and I quote, "a nation of whiners."

A nation of whiners? Tell that to the proud auto workers at a Michigan plant who, after they found out it was closing, kept showing up every day and working as hard as ever, because they knew there were people who counted on the brakes that they made. Tell that to the military families who shoulder their burdens silently as they watch their loved ones leave for their third or fourth or fifth tour of duty. These are not whiners. They work hard and give back and keep going without complaint. These are the Americans that I know.

Now, I don't believe that Senator McCain doesn't care what's going on in the lives of Americans. I just think he doesn't know. Why else would he define middle-class as someone making under five million dollars a year? How else could he propose hundreds of billions in tax breaks for big corporations and oil companies but not one penny of tax relief to more than one hundred million Americans? How else could he offer a health care plan that would actually tax people's benefits, or an education plan that would do nothing to help families pay for college, or a plan that would privatize Social Security and gamble your retirement?

It's not because John McCain doesn't care. It's because John McCain doesn't get it.

For over two decades, he's subscribed to that old, discredited Republican philosophy - give more and more to those with the most and hope that prosperity trickles down to everyone else. In Washington, they call this the Ownership Society, but what it really means is - you're on your own. Out of work? Tough luck. No health care? The market will fix it. Born into poverty? Pull yourself up by your own bootstraps - even if you don't have boots. You're on your own.

Well it's time for them to own their failure. It's time for us to change America.

You see, we Democrats have a very different measure of what constitutes progress in this country.

We measure progress by how many people can find a job that pays the mortgage; whether you can put a little extra money away at the end of each month so you can someday watch your child receive her college diploma. We measure progress in the 23 million new jobs that were created when Bill Clinton was President - when the average American family saw its income go up $7,500 instead of down $2,000 like it has under George Bush.

We measure the strength of our economy not by the number of billionaires we have or the profits of the Fortune 500, but by whether someone with a good idea can take a risk and start a new business, or whether the waitress who lives on tips can take a day off to look after a sick kid without losing her job - an economy that honors the dignity of work.

The fundamentals we use to measure economic strength are whether we are living up to that fundamental promise that has made this country great - a promise that is the only reason I am standing here tonight.

Because in the faces of those young veterans who come back from Iraq and Afghanistan, I see my grandfather, who signed up after Pearl Harbor, marched in Patton's Army, and was rewarded by a grateful nation with the chance to go to college on the GI Bill.

In the face of that young student who sleeps just three hours before working the night shift, I think about my mom, who raised my sister and me on her own while she worked and earned her degree; who once turned to food stamps but was still able to send us to the best schools in the country with the help of student loans and scholarships.

When I listen to another worker tell me that his factory has shut down, I remember all those men and women on the South Side of Chicago who I stood by and fought for two decades ago after the local steel plant closed.

And when I hear a woman talk about the difficulties of starting her own business, I think about my grandmother, who worked her way up from the secretarial pool to middle-management, despite years of being passed over for promotions because she was a woman. She's the one who taught me about hard work. She's the one who put off buying a new car or a new dress for herself so that I could have a better life. She poured everything she had into me. And although she can no longer travel, I know that she's watching tonight, and that tonight is her night as well.

I don't know what kind of lives John McCain thinks that celebrities lead, but this has been mine. These are my heroes. Theirs are the stories that shaped me. And it is on their behalf that I intend to win this election and keep our promise alive as President of the United States.

What is that promise?

It's a promise that says each of us has the freedom to make of our own lives what we will, but that we also have the obligation to treat each other with dignity and respect.

It's a promise that says the market should reward drive and innovation and generate growth, but that businesses should live up to their responsibilities to create American jobs, look out for American workers, and play by the rules of the road.

Ours is a promise that says government cannot solve all our problems, but what it should do is that which we cannot do for ourselves - protect us from harm and provide every child a decent education; keep our water clean and our toys safe; invest in new schools and new roads and new science and technology.

Our government should work for us, not against us. It should help us, not hurt us. It should ensure opportunity not just for those with the most money and influence, but for every American who's willing to work.

That's the promise of America - the idea that we are responsible for ourselves, but that we also rise or fall as one nation; the fundamental belief that I am my brother's keeper; I am my sister's keeper.

That's the promise we need to keep. That's the change we need right now. So let me spell out exactly what that change would mean if I am President.
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Change means a tax code that doesn't reward the lobbyists who wrote it, but the American workers and small businesses who deserve it.

Unlike John McCain, I will stop giving tax breaks to corporations that ship jobs overseas, and I will start giving them to companies that create good jobs right here in America.

I will eliminate capital gains taxes for the small businesses and the start-ups that will create the high-wage, high-tech jobs of tomorrow.

I will cut taxes - cut taxes - for 95% of all working families. Because in an economy like this, the last thing we should do is raise taxes on the middle-class.

And for the sake of our economy, our security, and the future of our planet, I will set a clear goal as President: in ten years, we will finally end our dependence on oil from the Middle East.

Washington's been talking about our oil addiction for the last thirty years, and John McCain has been there for twenty-six of them. In that time, he's said no to higher fuel-efficiency standards for cars, no to investments in renewable energy, no to renewable fuels. And today, we import triple the amount of oil as the day that Senator McCain took office.

Now is the time to end this addiction, and to understand that drilling is a stop-gap measure, not a long-term solution. Not even close.

As President, I will tap our natural gas reserves, invest in clean coal technology, and find ways to safely harness nuclear power. I'll help our auto companies re-tool, so that the fuel-efficient cars of the future are built right here in America. I'll make it easier for the American people to afford these new cars. And I'll invest 150 billion dollars over the next decade in affordable, renewable sources of energy - wind power and solar power and the next generation of biofuels; an investment that will lead to new industries and five million new jobs that pay well and can't ever be outsourced.

America, now is not the time for small plans.

Now is the time to finally meet our moral obligation to provide every child a world-class education, because it will take nothing less to compete in the global economy. Michelle and I are only here tonight because we were given a chance at an education. And I will not settle for an America where some kids don't have that chance. I'll invest in early childhood education. I'll recruit an army of new teachers, and pay them higher salaries and give them more support. And in exchange, I'll ask for higher standards and more accountability. And we will keep our promise to every young American - if you commit to serving your community or your country, we will make sure you can afford a college education.

Now is the time to finally keep the promise of affordable, accessible health care for every single American. If you have health care, my plan will lower your premiums. If you don't, you'll be able to get the same kind of coverage that members of Congress give themselves. And as someone who watched my mother argue with insurance companies while she lay in bed dying of cancer, I will make certain those companies stop discriminating against those who are sick and need care the most.

Now is the time to help families with paid sick days and better family leave, because nobody in America should have to choose between keeping their jobs and caring for a sick child or ailing parent.

Now is the time to change our bankruptcy laws, so that your pensions are protected ahead of CEO bonuses; and the time to protect Social Security for future generations.

And now is the time to keep the promise of equal pay for an equal day's work, because I want my daughters to have exactly the same opportunities as your sons.

Now, many of these plans will cost money, which is why I've laid out how I'll pay for every dime - by closing corporate loopholes and tax havens that don't help America grow. But I will also go through the federal budget, line by line, eliminating programs that no longer work and making the ones we do need work better and cost less - because we cannot meet twenty-first century challenges with a twentieth century bureaucracy.

And Democrats, we must also admit that fulfilling America's promise will require more than just money. It will require a renewed sense of responsibility from each of us to recover what John F. Kennedy called our "intellectual and moral strength." Yes, government must lead on energy independence, but each of us must do our part to make our homes and businesses more efficient. Yes, we must provide more ladders to success for young men who fall into lives of crime and despair. But we must also admit that programs alone can't replace parents; that government can't turn off the television and make a child do her homework; that fathers must take more responsibility for providing the love and guidance their children need.

Individual responsibility and mutual responsibility - that's the essence of America's promise.

And just as we keep our keep our promise to the next generation here at home, so must we keep America's promise abroad. If John McCain wants to have a debate about who has the temperament, and judgment, to serve as the next Commander-in-Chief, that's a debate I'm ready to have.

For while Senator McCain was turning his sights to Iraq just days after 9/11, I stood up and opposed this war, knowing that it would distract us from the real threats we face. When John McCain said we could just "muddle through" in Afghanistan, I argued for more resources and more troops to finish the fight against the terrorists who actually attacked us on 9/11, and made clear that we must take out Osama bin Laden and his lieutenants if we have them in our sights. John McCain likes to say that he'll follow bin Laden to the Gates of Hell - but he won't even go to the cave where he lives.

And today, as my call for a time frame to remove our troops from Iraq has been echoed by the Iraqi government and even the Bush Administration, even after we learned that Iraq has a $79 billion surplus while we're wallowing in deficits, John McCain stands alone in his stubborn refusal to end a misguided war.

That's not the judgment we need. That won't keep America safe. We need a President who can face the threats of the future, not keep grasping at the ideas of the past.

You don't defeat a terrorist network that operates in eighty countries by occupying Iraq. You don't protect Israel and deter Iran just by talking tough in Washington. You can't truly stand up for Georgia when you've strained our oldest alliances. If John McCain wants to follow George Bush with more tough talk and bad strategy, that is his choice - but it is not the change we need.

We are the party of Roosevelt. We are the party of Kennedy. So don't tell me that Democrats won't defend this country. Don't tell me that Democrats won't keep us safe. The Bush-McCain foreign policy has squandered the legacy that generations of Americans -- Democrats and Republicans - have built, and we are here to restore that legacy.

As Commander-in-Chief, I will never hesitate to defend this nation, but I will only send our troops into harm's way with a clear mission and a sacred commitment to give them the equipment they need in battle and the care and benefits they deserve when they come home.

I will end this war in Iraq responsibly, and finish the fight against al Qaeda and the Taliban in Afghanistan. I will rebuild our military to meet future conflicts. But I will also renew the tough, direct diplomacy that can prevent Iran from obtaining nuclear weapons and curb Russian aggression. I will build new partnerships to defeat the threats of the 21st century: terrorism and nuclear proliferation; poverty and genocide; climate change and disease. And I will restore our moral standing, so that America is once again that last, best hope for all who are called to the cause of freedom, who long for lives of peace, and who yearn for a better future.

These are the policies I will pursue. And in the weeks ahead, I look forward to debating them with John McCain.

But what I will not do is suggest that the Senator takes his positions for political purposes. Because one of the things that we have to change in our politics is the idea that people cannot disagree without challenging each other's character and patriotism.

The times are too serious, the stakes are too high for this same partisan playbook. So let us agree that patriotism has no party. I love this country, and so do you, and so does John McCain. The men and women who serve in our battlefields may be Democrats and Republicans and Independents, but they have fought together and bled together and some died together under the same proud flag. They have not served a Red America or a Blue America - they have served the United States of America.

So I've got news for you, John McCain. We all put our country first.

America, our work will not be easy. The challenges we face require tough choices, and Democrats as well as Republicans will need to cast off the worn-out ideas and politics of the past. For part of what has been lost these past eight years can't just be measured by lost wages or bigger trade deficits. What has also been lost is our sense of common purpose - our sense of higher purpose. And that's what we have to restore.

We may not agree on abortion, but surely we can agree on reducing the number of unwanted pregnancies in this country. The reality of gun ownership may be different for hunters in rural Ohio than for those plagued by gang-violence in Cleveland, but don't tell me we can't uphold the Second Amendment while keeping AK-47s out of the hands of criminals. I know there are differences on same-sex marriage, but surely we can agree that our gay and lesbian brothers and sisters deserve to visit the person they love in the hospital and to live lives free of discrimination. Passions fly on immigration, but I don't know anyone who benefits when a mother is separated from her infant child or an employer undercuts American wages by hiring illegal workers. This too is part of America's promise - the promise of a democracy where we can find the strength and grace to bridge divides and unite in common effort.

I know there are those who dismiss such beliefs as happy talk. They claim that our insistence on something larger, something firmer and more honest in our public life is just a Trojan Horse for higher taxes and the abandonment of traditional values. And that's to be expected. Because if you don't have any fresh ideas, then you use stale tactics to scare the voters. If you don't have a record to run on, then you paint your opponent as someone people should run from.

You make a big election about small things.

And you know what - it's worked before. Because it feeds into the cynicism we all have about government. When Washington doesn't work, all its promises seem empty. If your hopes have been dashed again and again, then it's best to stop hoping, and settle for what you already know.

I get it. I realize that I am not the likeliest candidate for this office. I don't fit the typical pedigree, and I haven't spent my career in the halls of Washington.

But I stand before you tonight because all across America something is stirring. What the nay-sayers don't understand is that this election has never been about me. It's been about you.

For eighteen long months, you have stood up, one by one, and said enough to the politics of the past. You understand that in this election, the greatest risk we can take is to try the same old politics with the same old players and expect a different result. You have shown what history teaches us - that at defining moments like this one, the change we need doesn't come from Washington. Change comes to Washington. Change happens because the American people demand it - because they rise up and insist on new ideas and new leadership, a new politics for a new time.

America, this is one of those moments.

I believe that as hard as it will be, the change we need is coming. Because I've seen it. Because I've lived it. I've seen it in Illinois, when we provided health care to more children and moved more families from welfare to work. I've seen it in Washington, when we worked across party lines to open up government and hold lobbyists more accountable, to give better care for our veterans and keep nuclear weapons out of terrorist hands.

And I've seen it in this campaign. In the young people who voted for the first time, and in those who got involved again after a very long time. In the Republicans who never thought they'd pick up a Democratic ballot, but did. I've seen it in the workers who would rather cut their hours back a day than see their friends lose their jobs, in the soldiers who re-enlist after losing a limb, in the good neighbors who take a stranger in when a hurricane strikes and the floodwaters rise.

This country of ours has more wealth than any nation, but that's not what makes us rich. We have the most powerful military on Earth, but that's not what makes us strong. Our universities and our culture are the envy of the world, but that's not what keeps the world coming to our shores.

Instead, it is that American spirit - that American promise - that pushes us forward even when the path is uncertain; that binds us together in spite of our differences; that makes us fix our eye not on what is seen, but what is unseen, that better place around the bend.

That promise is our greatest inheritance. It's a promise I make to my daughters when I tuck them in at night, and a promise that you make to yours - a promise that has led immigrants to cross oceans and pioneers to travel west; a promise that led workers to picket lines, and women to reach for the ballot.

And it is that promise that forty five years ago today, brought Americans from every corner of this land to stand together on a Mall in Washington, before Lincoln's Memorial, and hear a young preacher from Georgia speak of his dream.

The men and women who gathered there could've heard many things. They could've heard words of anger and discord. They could've been told to succumb to the fear and frustration of so many dreams deferred.

But what the people heard instead - people of every creed and color, from every walk of life - is that in America, our destiny is inextricably linked. That together, our dreams can be one.

"We cannot walk alone," the preacher cried. "And as we walk, we must make the pledge that we shall always march ahead. We cannot turn back."

America, we cannot turn back. Not with so much work to be done. Not with so many children to educate, and so many veterans to care for. Not with an economy to fix and cities to rebuild and farms to save. Not with so many families to protect and so many lives to mend. America, we cannot turn back. We cannot walk alone. At this moment, in this election, we must pledge once more to march into the future. Let us keep that promise - that American promise - and in the words of Scripture hold firmly, without wavering, to the hope that we confess.

Thank you, God Bless you, and God Bless the United States of America.

Old School Friday: Erykah Badu

This week's theme for Old School Friday is neo-soul. Neo-soul is a musical genre that fuses contemporary R&B and 1970s-style soul with elements of hip-hop. As its name (new-soul) implies, Neo-Soul music is essentially modern-day soul music, with contemporary attitudes and sensibilities. It differs from contemporary R&B in that it's obviously more soulful, and it also tends to have deeper messages and meanings than R&B.

I look forward to traveling cyberspace to see what other artists are featured this week. I honed in on Erykah Badu. I imagine Erykah Badu has an entire wing of the Neo-Soul Hall of Fame!


Call Tyrone




Other Side of the Game



August 28, 2008

I Have A Dream ... 45 Years Later!

It has been a remarkable presidential campaign already. I remember listening to Barack Obama's victory speech after his victory in Iowa with tears of joy. We experienced the ups and downs of the next months of the campaign. We've documented much of it on this blog.

In a few hours we may see something that we will talk about for the rest of our lives. We will see a Black man accepting the nomination to become the most powerful human being on earth! The first 43 men in the job were white.

Now we have a chance to do what Martin Luther King Jr. could only dream about.

I join other villagers in saying a prayer of strength and wisdom for Barack Obama as he talks with us later tonight. I invite all villagers to share their thoughts in the COMMENTS section. What say u?

1,400th Blog Added to Villager's Black Blog Rankings


Our tradition is to highlight every 100th blog added to the Villager's Black Blog Rankings (BBR). In the past we shared links to the 800th, 900th, 1000th, 1100th and 1200th blogs added to the BBR.

Today, we are pleased to announce that Reverend Lutionary is the 1,400th blog added to the BBR. Pastor Wilson provides spriritual guidance at the Friends 4 Life Covenant Church in south suburban Flossmoor Illinois. He calls himself a Pastor, Apologetic, Social Ethicist, Life Coach, Sophisticated Theologian and Thoughtful Homiletician. He seeks to transform lives with the approach of Power vs. Performance.

I encourage all villagers to take a moment to visit the Reverend Lutionary blog (BBR #1400). You can follow him on Twitter as well!

Bill Clinton Speech Democratic National Convention Speech (Video, Text)

Villagers, it is my view that Bill Clinton did the right thing at the Democratic National Convention in Denver. He told America why he feels that Obama would be an excellent Commander-in-Chief for our nation. Here is the text and video of his speech for posterity.


I am honored to be here tonight to support Barack Obama. And to warm up the crowd for Joe Biden, though as you’ll soon see, he doesn’t need any help from me. I love Joe Biden, and America will too.

What a year we Democrats have had. The primary began with an all-star line up and came down to two remarkable Americans locked in a hard fought contest to the very end. The campaign generated so much heat it increased global warming.

In the end, my candidate didn’t win. But I’m very proud of the campaign she ran: she never quit on the people she stood up for, on the changes she pushed for, on the future she wants for all our children. And I’m grateful for the chance Chelsea and I had to tell Americans about the person we know and love.

I’m not so grateful for the chance to speak in the wake of her magnificent address last night. But I’ll do my best.

Hillary told us in no uncertain terms that she’ll do everything she can to elect Barack Obama.

That makes two of us.

Actually that makes 18 million of us – because, like Hillary, I want all of you who supported her to vote for Barack Obama in November.

Here’s why.

Our nation is in trouble on two fronts: The American Dream is under siege at home, and America’s leadership in the world has been weakened.

Middle class and low-income Americans are hurting, with incomes declining; job losses, poverty and inequality rising; mortgage foreclosures and credit card debt increasing; health care coverage disappearing; and a big spike in the cost of food, utilities, and gasoline.

Our position in the world has been weakened by too much unilateralism and too little cooperation; a perilous dependence on imported oil; a refusal to lead on global warming; a growing indebtedness and a dependence on foreign lenders; a severely burdened military; a backsliding on global non-proliferation and arms control agreements; and a failure to consistently use the power of diplomacy, from the Middle East to Africa to Latin America to Central and Eastern Europe.

Clearly, the job of the next President is to rebuild the American Dream and restore America’s standing in the world.

Everything I learned in my eight years as President and in the work I’ve done since, in America and across the globe, has convinced me that Barack Obama is the man for this job.

He has a remarkable ability to inspire people, to raise our hopes and rally us to high purpose. He has the intelligence and curiosity every successful President needs. His policies on the economy, taxes, health care and energy are far superior to the Republican alternatives. He has shown a clear grasp of our foreign policy and national security challenges, and a firm commitment to repair our badly strained military. His family heritage and life experiences have given him a unique capacity to lead our increasingly diverse nation and to restore our leadership in an ever more interdependent world. The long, hard primary tested and strengthened him. And in his first presidential decision, the selection of a running mate, he hit it out of the park.

With Joe Biden’s experience and wisdom, supporting Barack Obama’s proven understanding, insight, and good instincts, America will have the national security leadership we need.

Barack Obama is ready to lead America and restore American leadership in the world. Ready to preserve, protect, and defend the Constitution of the United States. Barack Obama is ready to be President of the United States.

He will work for an America with more partners and fewer adversaries. He will rebuild our frayed alliances and revitalize the international institutions which help to share the costs of the world’s problems and to leverage our power and influence. He will put us back in the forefront of the world’s fight to reduce nuclear, chemical, and biological weapons and to stop global warming. He will continue and enhance our nation’s global leadership in an area in which I am deeply involved, the fight against AIDS, TB and malaria, including a renewal of the battle against HIV/AIDS here at home. He will choose diplomacy first and military force as a last resort. But in a world troubled by terror; by trafficking in weapons, drugs and people; by human rights abuses; by other threats to our security, our interests, and our values, when he cannot convert adversaries into partners, he will stand up to them.

Barack Obama also will not allow the world’s problems to obscure its opportunities. Everywhere, in rich and poor countries alike, hardworking people need good jobs; secure, affordable healthcare, food, and energy; quality education for their children; and economically beneficial ways to fight global warming. These challenges cry out for American ideas and American innovation. When Barack Obama unleashes them, America will save lives, win new allies, open new markets, and create new jobs for our people.

Most important, Barack Obama knows that America cannot be strong abroad unless we are strong at home. People the world over have always been more impressed by the power of our example than by the example of our power.

Look at the example the Republicans have set: American workers have given us consistently rising productivity. They’ve worked harder and produced more. What did they get in return? Declining wages, less than ¼ as many new jobs as in the previous eight years, smaller health care and pension benefits, rising poverty and the biggest increase in income inequality since the 1920s. American families by the millions are struggling with soaring health care costs and declining coverage. I will never forget the parents of children with autism and other severe conditions who told me on the campaign trail that they couldn’t afford health care and couldn’t qualify their kids for Medicaid unless they quit work or got a divorce. Are these the family values the Republicans are so proud of? What about the military families pushed to the breaking point by unprecedented multiple deployments? What about the assault on science and the defense of torture? What about the war on unions and the unlimited favors for the well connected? What about Katrina and cronyism?

America can do better than that. And Barack Obama will.

But first we have to elect him.

The choice is clear. The Republicans will nominate a good man who served our country heroically and suffered terribly in Vietnam. He loves our country every bit as much as we all do. As a Senator, he has shown his independence on several issues. But on the two great questions of this election, how to rebuild the American Dream and how to restore America’s leadership in the world, he still embraces the extreme philosophy which has defined his party for more than 25 years, a philosophy we never had a real chance to see in action until 2001, when the Republicans finally gained control of both the White House and Congress. Then we saw what would happen to America if the policies they had talked about for decades were implemented.

They took us from record surpluses to an exploding national debt; from over 22 million new jobs down to 5 million; from an increase in working family incomes of $7,500 to a decline of more than $2,000; from almost 8 million Americans moving out of poverty to more than 5 and a half million falling into poverty – and millions more losing their health insurance.

Now, in spite of all the evidence, their candidate is promising more of the same: More tax cuts for the wealthiest Americans that will swell the deficit, increase inequality, and weaken the economy. More band-aids for health care that will enrich insurance companies, impoverish families and increase the number of uninsured. More going it alone in the world, instead of building the shared responsibilities and shared opportunities necessary to advance our security and restore our influence.

They actually want us to reward them for the last eight years by giving them four more. Let’s send them a message that will echo from the Rockies all across America: Thanks, but no thanks. In this case, the third time is not the charm.

My fellow Democrats, sixteen years ago, you gave me the profound honor to lead our party to victory and to lead our nation to a new era of peace and broadly shared prosperity.

Together, we prevailed in a campaign in which the Republicans said I was too young and too inexperienced to be Commander-in-Chief. Sound familiar? It didn’t work in 1992, because we were on the right side of history. And it won’t work in 2008, because Barack Obama is on the right side of history.

His life is a 21st Century incarnation of the American Dream. His achievements are proof of our continuing progress toward the “more perfect union” of our founders’ dreams. The values of freedom and equal opportunity which have given him his historic chance will drive him as president to give all Americans, regardless of race, religion, gender, sexual orientation or disability, their chance to build a decent life, and to show our humanity, as well as our strength, to the world.

We see that humanity, that strength, and our future in Barack and Michelle Obama and their beautiful children. We see them reinforced by the partnership with Joe Biden, his wife Jill, a dedicated teacher, and their family.

Barack Obama will lead us away from division and fear of the last eight years back to unity and hope. If, like me, you still believe America must always be a place called Hope, then join Hillary, Chelsea and me in making Senator Barack Obama the next President of the United States.






August 27, 2008

Am I Not Human?



Join The Roots of Humanity on the 27th of every month in asking the unified, persistent question that has the answers collectively needed, within it.

We ask on behalf of our human siblings lacking in access to the most basic of communication tools, or barred from communication by their governments: Am I Not Human?

Download this month's ebook: 'Where Do We Go From Here'


Click the image to download.


Crossposted at UltravioletUnderground, Roots of Humanity and Liberator Magazine. I hope that many villagers will download our eBook ... and respond to the questions that have been asked.

What say u?

Premio Brillante Award



Lady Deborah (My Brown Eyed View) presented our blog with the 2008 Premio Brillante Weblog Award. She wrote, "This blog keeps me inspired and focused on the important matters of the day. Villager is actively working within the blogosphere and in real time to bring about change."

My mom would call me "brilliant" when I was a young villager. I guess all parents pump up their children with such praise. Anyhow, the word "brilliant" retains a special place in my heart. As such, I'm very proud to earn this blogger award!


The rules for the 2008 Premio Brillante Award are simple enough:
  • Add the logo of the award to your blog
  • Link to the blogger who awarded it to you
  • Give it to at least 7 other blogs
  • Link to those blogs
  • Leave a comment for your nominees on their blogs
There are a number of remarkable blogs out in the world. Here are seven blogs that are not widely known. They bring it hard and strong on a regular basis. I hope you take a moment to visit each of these award winners.
  1. BlackCynic America - This young brotha is laugh-out-loud funny and insightful in his comments on the presidential election, Beijing Olympics and the entertainment world. Methinks he will be a new member of The AfroSpear in the very near future.

  2. Black On Campus - I love blogs that have a unique niche. One such blog is run by Dr. Ajuan Mance. She is an associate professor of English and Mills College in Oakland, CA and the creator of Twilight and Reason: Higher Education and the African American Experience. For her, literature, history, and higher education are passions bordering, at times, on obsessions. I encourage all villagers to take a moment to enjoy the uplifting and educational posts on this blog.

  3. Black Threads - I was inspired by the story of Michelle Obama and her older brother. As such, I want all villagers to visit this blog owned & operated by my younger sister. She is an internationally-recognized expert on African American quilts and quilters. She is an inspiration for me and others in our family.

  4. Mrs. Grapevine - I have never met this sister. I'm not a big fan of gossip blogs. However, it is clear that Mrs. Grapevine has musical taste and a soul that is very similiar to my own. As such, I find myself enjoying her blog posts and her comments. I encourage all villagers to check out her self-titled blog!

  5. The Black Tech Report - This blog provides a daily dose of technology. The stated mission for this blog is to be a voice where there has not been one. To bring real information to individuals, and businesses where there has not been great information. To encourage, empower, and advise people on past, present, and the future of technology.

  6. The 'D' Spot - The “D” Spot is all about Detroit as seen through the ever-watchful eyes of two Detroiters - husband and wife - who have experienced their city in very different ways. I have been following Keith's insights on a city that I called home for 8 years. Detroit is going through challenging times. I invite all villagers to look at it from an insider's perspective. It helps that Keith's writing style is outstanding!

  7. The Happy Go Lucky Bachelor - I don't have one of those widgets that tracks the villagers who leave the most comments. If I did than Mike would be at the top of the list. Mike has been very supportive of my blog. In return, I share this blog award with him for the creative nature of his eclectic blog. His blog requires you to use critical thinking skills and to have a very big sense of humor!

What do you think about our seven choices for this Premio Brillante Award?

Wordless Wednesday: Hillary Clinton Unites Democratic Party






August 26, 2008

Hillary Clinton Democratic Convention Speech


I am much more pleased with Hillary Clinton as a result of her speech tonight. Hillary laid it out in a simple and succint manner by telling her folks that this election isn't about her any more.

The former first lady ceded the nomination that was almost hers to Barack Obama in a powerful speech at the Democratic National Convention in Denver. This puts an end to the drama of the 2008 primary. In my view Hillary should be the Senate Majority Leader or Supreme Court Justice or whatever the heck she wants in her political future. She firmly stood up on her own ... outside of the shadow of her prior status as a supportive wife.

She was warmly embraced by delegates split between her and Barack Obama in the primary. Any who were still angry over her loss were drowned out in applause when she opened her speech by declaring herself "a proud supporter of Barack Obama."

She exhorted her backers to remember who was most important in this campaign.

"I want you to ask yourselves: Were you in this campaign just for me?" she said. She urged them instead to remember Marines who have served their country, single mothers, families barely getting by on minimum wage and other struggling Americans.

Only two more things need to happen. Bill Clinton needs to heed the message, tone and tenor of his wife's remarks tomorrow night when he speaks ... and Barack Obama needs to give the best speech of his life on Thursday night.



"I am honored to be here tonight. A proud mother. A proud Democrat. A proud American. And a proud supporter of Barack Obama.

My friends, it is time to take back the country we love.

Whether you voted for me, or voted for Barack, the time is now to unite as a single party with a single purpose. We are on the same team, and none of us can sit on the sidelines.

This is a fight for the future. And it's a fight we must win.

I haven't spent the past 35 years in the trenches advocating for children, campaigning for universal health care, helping parents balance work and family, and fighting for women's rights at home and around the world . . . to see another Republican in the White House squander the promise of our country and the hopes of our people.

And you haven't worked so hard over the last 18 months, or endured the last eight years, to suffer through more failed leadership.

No way. No how. No McCain.

Barack Obama is my candidate. And he must be our President.

Tonight we need to remember what a Presidential election is really about. When the polls have closed, and the ads are finally off the air, it comes down to you -- the American people, your lives, and your children's futures.

For me, it's been a privilege to meet you in your homes, your workplaces, and your communities. Your stories reminded me everyday that America's greatness is bound up in the lives of the American people -- your hard work, your devotion to duty, your love for your children, and your determination to keep going, often in the face of enormous obstacles."

What did you think about Hillary's speech tonight?



August 25, 2008

Michelle Obama Democratic National Convention Speech (Video, Text)




As you might imagine, for Barack, running for President is nothing compared to that first game of basketball with my brother Craig.

I can’t tell you how much it means to have Craig and my mom here tonight. Like Craig, I can feel my dad looking down on us, just as I’ve felt his presence in every grace-filled moment of my life.

At six-foot-six, I’ve often felt like Craig was looking down on me too…literally. But the truth is, both when we were kids and today, he wasn’t looking down on me – he was watching over me.

And he’s been there for me every step of the way since that clear February day 19 months ago, when – with little more than our faith in each other and a hunger for change – we joined my husband, Barack Obama, on the improbable journey that’s brought us to this moment.

But each of us also comes here tonight by way of our own improbable journey.

I come here tonight as a sister, blessed with a brother who is my mentor, my protector and my lifelong friend.

I come here as a wife who loves my husband and believes he will be an extraordinary president.

I come here as a Mom whose girls are the heart of my heart and the center of my world – they’re the first thing I think about when I wake up in the morning, and the last thing I think about when I go to bed at night. Their future – and all our children’s future – is my stake in this election.

And I come here as a daughter – raised on the South Side of Chicago by a father who was a blue collar city worker, and a mother who stayed at home with my brother and20me. My mother’s love has always been a sustaining force for our family, and one of my greatest joys is seeing her integrity, her compassion, and her intelligence reflected in my own daughters.

My Dad was our rock. Although he was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis in his early thirties, he was our provider, our champion, our hero. As he got sicker, it got harder for him to walk, it took him longer to get dressed in the morning. But if he was in pain, he never let on. He never stopped smiling and laughing – even while struggling to button his shirt, even while using two canes to get himself across the room to give my Mom a kiss. He just woke up a little earlier, and worked a little harder.

He and my mom poured everything they had into me and Craig. It was the greatest gift a child can receive: never doubting for a single minute that you’re loved, and cherished, and have a place in this world. And thanks to their faith and hard work, we both were able to go on to college. So I know firsthand from their lives – and mine – that the American Dream endures.

And you know, what struck me when I first met Barack was that even though he had this funny name, even though he’d grown up all the way across the continent in Hawaii, his family was so much like mine. He was raised by grandparents who were working class folks just like my parents, and by a single mother who struggled to pay the bills just like we did. Like my family, they scrimped and saved so that he could have opportunities they never had themselves. And Barack and I were raised with so many of the same values: that you work hard for what you want in life; that your word is your bond and you do what you say you’re going to do; that you treat people with dignity and respect, even if you don’t know them, and even if you don’t agree with them.

And Barack and I set out to build lives guided by these values, and pass them on to the next generation. Because we want our children – and all children in this nation – to know that the only limit to the height of your achievements is the reach of your dreams and your willingness to work for them.

And as our friendship grew, and I learned more about Barack, he introduced me to the work he’d done when he first moved to Chicago after college. Instead of heading to Wall Street, Barack had gone to work in neighborhoods devastated when steel plants shut down, and jobs dried up. And he’d been invited back to speak to people from those neighborhoods about how to rebuild their community.

The people gathered together that day were ordinary folks doing the best they could to build a good life. They were parents living paycheck to paycheck; grandparents trying to get by on a fixed income; men frustrated that they couldn’t support their familie s after their jobs disappeared. Those folks weren’t asking for a handout or a shortcut. They were ready to work – they wanted to contribute. They believed – like you and I believe – that America should be a place where you can make it if you try.

Barack stood up that day, and spoke words that have stayed with me ever since. He talked about “The world as it is” and “The world as it should be.” And he said that all too often, we accept the distance between the two, and settle for the world as it is – even when it doesn’t reflect our values and aspirations. But he reminded us that we know what our world should look like. We know what fairness and justice and opportunity look like. And he urged us to believe in ourselves – to find the strength within ourselves to strive for the world as it should be. And isn’t that the great American story?

It’s the story of men and women gathered in churches and union halls, in town squares and high school gyms – people who stood up and marched and risked everything they had – refusing to settle, determined to mold our future into the shape of our ideals.

It is because of their will and determination that this week, we celebrate two anniversaries: the 88th anniversary of women winning the right to vote, and the 45th anniversary of that hot summer day when Dr. King lifted our sights and our hearts with his dream for our nation.

I stand here today at the crosscurrents of that history – knowing that my piece of the American Dream is a blessing hard won by those who came before me. All of them driven by the same conviction that drove my dad to get up an hour early each day to painstakingly dress himself for work. The same conviction that drives the men and women I’ve met all across this country:

People who work the day shift, kiss their kids goodnight, and head out for the night shift – without disappointment, without regret – that goodnight kiss a reminder of everything they’re working for.

The military families who say grace each night with an empty seat at the table. The servicemen and women who love this country so much, they leave those they love most to defend it.

The young people across America serving our communities – teaching children, cleaning up neighborhoods, caring for the least among us each and every day.

People like Hillary Clinton, who put those 18 million cracks in the glass ceiling, so that our daughters – and sons – can dream a little bigger and aim a little higher.

People like Joe Biden, who’s never forgotten where he came from, and never stopped fighting for folks who work long hours and face long odds and need someone on their side again.

All of us driven by a simple belief that the world as it is just won’t do – that we have an obligation to fight for the world as it should be.

That is the thread that connects our hearts. That is the thread that runs through my journey and Barack’s journey and so many other improbable journeys that have brought us here tonight, where the current of history meets this new tide of hope.

That is why I love this country.

And in my own life, in my own small way, I’ve tried to give back to this country that has given me so much. That’s why I left a job at a law firm for a career in public service, working to empower young people to volunteer in their communities. Because I believe that each of us – no matter what our age or background or walk of life – each of us has something to contribute to the life of this nation.

It’s a belief Barack shares – a belief at the heart of his life’s work.

It’s what he did all those years ago, on the streets of Chicago, setting up job training to get people back to work and afterschool programs to keep kids safe – working block by block to help people lift up their families.

It’s what he did in the Illinois Senate, moving people from welfare to jobs, passing tax cuts for hard working families, and making sure women get equal pay for equal work.

It’s what he’s done in the United States Senate, fighting to ensure the men and women who serve this country are welcomed home not just with medals and parades, but with good jobs and benefits and health care – including mental health care.

That’s why he’s running – to end the war in Iraq responsibly, to build an economy that lifts every family, to make health care available for every American, and to make sure every child in this nation gets a world class education all the way from preschool to college. That’s what Barack Obama will do as President of the United States of America.

He’ll achieve these goals the same way he always has – by bringing us together and reminding us how much we share and how alike we really are. You see, Barack doesn’t care where you’re from, or what your background is, or what party – if any – you belong to. That’s not how he sees the world. He knows that thread that connects us – our belief in America’s promise, our commitment to our children’s future – is strong enough to hold us together as one nation even when we disagree.
It was strong enough to bring hope to those neighborhoods in Chicago.

It was strong enough to bring hope to the mother he met worried about her child in Iraq; hope to the man who’s unemployed, but can’t afford gas to find a job; hope to the student working nights to pay for her sister’s heal th care, sleeping just a few hours a day.

And it was strong enough to bring hope to people who came out on a cold Iowa night and became the first voices in this chorus for change that’s been echoed by millions of Americans from every corner of this nation.

Millions of Americans who know that Barack understands their dreams; that Barack will fight for people like them; and that Barack will finally bring the change we need.

And in the end, after all that’s happened these past 19 months, the Barack Obama I know today is the same man I fell in love with 19 years ago. He’s the same man who drove me and our new baby daughter home from the hospital ten years ago this summer, inching along at a snail’s pace, peering anxiously at us in the rearview mirror, feeling the whole weight of her future in his hands, determined to give her everything he’d struggled so hard for himself, determined to give her what he never had: the affirming embrace of a father’s love.

And as I tuck that little girl and her little sister into bed at night, I think about how one day, they’ll have families of their own. And one day, they – and your sons and daughters – will tell their own children about what we did together in this election. They’ll tell them how this time, we listened to our hopes, instead of our fears. How this time, we decided to stop doubting and to start dreaming.

How this time, in this great country – where a girl from the South Side of Chicago can go to college and law school, and the son of a single mother from Hawaii can go all the way to the White House – we committed ourselves to building the world as it should be.

So tonight, in honor of my father’s memory and my daughters’ future – out of gratitude to those whose triumphs we mark this week, and those whose everyday sacrifices have brought us to this moment – let us devote ourselves to finishing their work; let us work together to fulfill their hopes; and let us stand together to elect Barack Obama President of the United States of America.

Thank you, God bless you, and God bless America.

Behind-the-Scenes Video of Michelle Obama Before Her Speech

Michelle Obama recorded a behind-the-scenes video on the first day of the convention. It provides villagers with a look at all the exciting preparations that are under way.


August 24, 2008

Eight Million African Americans Still Not Registered to Vote


by Hazel Trice Edney
NNPA Editor-in-Chief


Despite record numbers of voters who turned out during the presidential primaries last spring, eight million African Americans are still not registered to vote.

This according to Rick Wade, African American vote director for the Obama for America presidential campaign.

“Our principle focus has been a 50-state voter registration initiative. I think we all appreciate that if we increase the number of African American registered voters and then increase turnout and get people to the polls on Nov. 4, then Sen. Obama will be the next president of the United States,” Wade says.
Wade explains that the eight million unregistered Black voters accounts for 32 percent of eligible Black voting population nationwide.

Read the rest of this article here.

August 23, 2008

Joe Biden is Obama's Running Mate


Barack Obama tapped Joe Biden as his running mate, bringing to the Democratic ticket a veteran senator with deep expertise in international relations. Personally, I had been hoping that General Wesley Clark would be the nominee. However, Biden is a great choice from a strategic perspective.

"Barack has chosen Senator Joe Biden to be our VP nominee," the text message said. "Watch the first Obama-Biden rally live at 3 p.m. ET on http://www.barackobama.com/. Spread the word!"

The chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, Biden could help offset Obama's relative inexperience in foreign policy. Obama, a 47-year-old first-term senator, has been ridiculed by his Republican rival, John McCain, as too naive to be president.

A Roman Catholic born to a working-class family in Scranton, Pa., Biden might also help Obama draw blue-collar Catholic voters who formed a core constituency for New York Sen. Hillary Clinton in her primary battle with Obama. I hope that we see some visible support from Clinton supporters with this VP selection.

The senator also offers a compelling personal story. His first wife, Neilia Hunter, died in a car accident in 1972 as she was driving their three children shortly after his election as U.S. senator. Their infant daughter was also killed but their two sons -- Beau and Hunter -- survived their injuries.

Biden, then 30, was sworn in as a first-term senator at his sons' bedside.

Biden has long harbored aspirations to be president himself. He ran this year, but dropped out of the Democratic presidential race in January after a lackluster showing in the Iowa caucuses. "I'm not a superstar," he said while stumping in Iowa. "People say they like me, people tell me they think I'd be a good president but that they just don't think I can win."

Along with his Senate Foreign Relations post, which recently took him on a trip to Georgia after the Russian invasion, Biden has been chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, and has had a hand in legislation on crime, terrorism and drug policy.

One issue that could prove problematic is that Biden supported the 2002 resolution in favor of military action in Iraq. Obama has made his opposition to the war a centerpiece of his campaign. But Biden has become a persistent critic of the handling of the war.

One of the main roles of the Democratic vice presidential nominee will be to attack McCain and his running mate. The Arizona senator is expected to name his No. 2 after the Democrats end their national convention in Denver.

Villagers, what is your take on the Biden selection? What say u?

August 22, 2008

Blackonomics Million Dollar Club * Ijoba Shule

Villagers recall our introduction of the Blackonomics Million Dollar Club (BMDC) a few months ago. In fact, there is a BMDC Facebook group. Anyhow, we received the following message from BMDC member Janise Lee:


Greetings Fellow BMDC Members. In 2006 the Ijoba Shule (Philadelphia, PA) was selected as a BMDC donee. Many of you contributed and helped the school continue operations and its' mission to educate students to become responsible handlers of power in service to others.

The school is in the process of establishing a Friends of the Shule mailing list to stay connected with those who believe in and support the school's mission.

I am asking that all of you who donated (and any new members of the BMDC who would like to be added to this list) to please send an email to info@ijobashule.org. We respect everyone's privacy and will not share or otherwise misuse anyone's email address. If you would like to also receive correspondence by postal mail please include your mailing address in the email.

Thank you in advance for being a member of the BMDC and supporting our institutions. Let's continue to make the BMDC as strong and effective as possible.

Peace and Blessings,
Janise Lee, Parent
Member of the Ijoba Shule and BMDC


To Subscribe to BLACKONOMICS MILLION DOLLAR CLUB List, Click this link.

Old School Friday: Luther Vandross

Mrs. Grapevine is co-founder of the Old School Friday meme. She informed us that the theme this week is 'Favorite Male Singers'. I thought about Frankie Beverly, Rick James and Michael Franks. However, as they say ... 'there can only be one' ... and my choice is the late, great Luther Vandross.

I first heard Luther when he was with a group called 'Change' and they put out a song called 'The Glow of Love'. I remember memorizing the words to that song and using them as a poem for my fiancee.






I saw Luther live in concert while in college. It always amazed me how his live concet appearances sounded just like the recorded tracks on his albums. The man was a musical genius.






August 21, 2008

Blog Safari #9


Sometimes it is difficult to comment or read all of the unique and interesting blog posts out in the afrosphere. That is why we use this 'Blog Safari' concept. I hope you enjoy these blog post referrals:
Let us know if you come across any remarkable posts that should be shared in our next Blog Safari!

Special Election Briefing: 5 Things You Should Know

MoveOn.org provides the following briefing on five things for all villagers to consider as we move into the general election campaign season. This video covers:
  1. The Polls
  2. The Smears
  3. The Misconceptions
  4. The Myths
  5. Our Path to Victory



Villagers, what is your take on this briefing? Did it resonate with you on any of the five points?

Villager on NPR Roundtable: Mixed Race, Pretty Face?

I represented villagers as a member of the NPR bloggers' roundtable hosted by Farai Chideya on 8/20/08. We discussed the following three questions during the roundtable:
  1. Do you agree with new study calling mixed-race kids cuter, but worse behaved?

  2. Do you agree with the Justice Department desire to use racial, ethnic and religious profiling when investigating a suspected terrorist?

  3. It's all good that Laurence Fishburne has a new gig with CSI, but doesn't it seem like the Black sitcom is going the way of the dinosaur?

My two roundtable panel colleagues were Aimee Laramore (A Work in Progress) and Kevin Ross (3 Brothers and a Sister).

Do have thoughts on any of these three issues that you care to share? What say u?

August 20, 2008

The New National Emblem

The government today announced that it is changing its emblem from an Eagle to a CONDOM because it more accurately reflects the government's political stance.

A condom allows for inflation, halts production, destroys the next generation, protects a bunch of pricks, and gives you a sense of security while you're actually being screwed!

Dayum, it just doesn't get more accurate than that! What say u?

Million Father March


Villagers, I'm walking my son to school this morning. It is my commitment to support the Million Father March.

A father who actively participates in the educational and social development of a child's life is invaluable and irreplaceable. I'm told that children whose fathers take active roles in their educational lives earn better grades, get better test scores, enjoy school more and are more likely to graduate from high school and attend college.

Methinks that children have fewer behavior problems when fathers speak and listen to their children regularly and are active in their lives.

Even if there is a divorce or out-of-wedlock situations ... a good father should be part of a good parent team to create a strong family structure for the child(ren). After all, strong family structures produce children who are more centered, academically proficient, socially developed and are a valuable asset to their communities.

Basically, it seems that better parents produce better communities, better schools and better students.

For these reasons, I'm walking my son to school tomorrow morning.

August 18, 2008

John McCain is Livin' Large!

McCain and his cronies keep trying to paint Barack Obama as an 'elitist'. Check out the video below and tell me who you think is the 'elitist' in this campaign!

"Most working families today do not have homes that have anywhere near ten rooms. John McCain has ten houses. Many working people in America have to work two and three jobs to provide for their families and pay their car loans. John McCain hops on a private jet. Is it any wonder why McCain champions a George Bush agenda of cutting taxes for corporations and the wealthy, helping oil companies turn record profits, and leaving working families to fend for themselves? McCain's velvet world leaves him utterly unprepared to make the tough choices we need to restore the middle class and ensure that everyone in America has quality, affordable health insurance."

- Andy Stern, President, Service Employees International Union (SEIU)



McCain is living large! I don't think that McCain has a clue about what kind of lives ordinary citizens in America are living. What say u?

Blue Nile: A Smarter Way to Buy Diamonds

I've been divorced for a number of years now. I consider it the biggest mistake of my life. As such, I don't consider myself an expert on women. However, one thing I know...

...women love jewelry.

If you want to make her understand you love her, you can buy her diamond jewelry, gold jewelry, pearl jewelry or whatever she likes. Now is the time to think about the gifts you want to give later this year to place focus on your relationships with your spouse, your lover, your family, your friends or yourself. One remarkable gift would be jewelry.

One place to check out diamonds, engagement rings or fine jewelry is Blue Nile has all of them. Blue Nile is the largest online retailer of certified diamonds, engagement rings and fine jewelry, and they offer outstanding quality, selection, and value. Their business is growing with shipments to Australia, Hong Kong, Japan, New Zealand, Norway, Singapore, Switzerland and Taiwan.

Villagers can also create their own jewelry. You choose the right diamond and they will set it in your favorite earring, pendant, or ring design.

No matter what the occasion, Blue Nile can help you celebrate with classic jewelry. Now is the time to make your plans for the perfect gift this year. What say u?

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