Saturday Open Thread

Good Morning, 3 Chics!

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About SouthernGirl2

A Native Texan who adores baby kittens, loves horses, rodeos, pomegranates, & collect Eagles. Enjoys politics, games shows, & dancing to all types of music. Loves discussing and learning about different cultures. A Phi Theta Kappa lifetime member with a passion for Social & Civil Justice.
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21 Responses to Saturday Open Thread

  1. rikyrah says:

    Casino and Cable Entrepreneur Don Barden Dies
    By: Jenée Desmond-Harris

    Posted: May 19, 2011

    Don Barden, the first African American to own a Las Vegas casino and the first to own a major cable TV franchise, has died.

    Barden built homes in Detroit and a business in Namibia. Ebony magazine, the TBS cable network, Black Entertainment Television and Black Enterprise magazine have all honored him as a top national business leader. He most recently won a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Michigan Chronicle newspaper and an Award of Excellence from the Thurgood Marshall Scholarship Fund in 2006.

    He started Barden Cablevision and 1979 and transformed it into one of the nation’s biggest black-owned businesses, selling it in 1994 to Comcast. Then, in 2001, he became the first black person to own a Las Vegas casino.

    “Don Barden was a pioneer of his time, and an inspiration to not only the local business community, but to everyone he touched throughout his business ventures,” Detroit Regional Chamber President and CEO Sandy Baruah said in a statement.

    Barden’s casino empire included the Majestic Star company; two casino boats in Gary, Ind.; and Fitzgerald casinos in Las Vegas, Tunica, Miss., and Black Hawk, Colo. “I want to leave a legacy,” he continued. “I want to have a company that will go on for many years after I’m gone, which has not often been the case among most African-American businesses.”

    Detroit Mayor Dave Bing said in a statement: “Don was a stalwart leader and businessman in this community, as well as a friend. We were aware of his longtime illness and dreaded this day. We send our condolences to his family.”

    Wayne County Executive Robert Ficano described Barden as a successful businessman who maintained a concern for the welfare of Detroit. “He stood as a role model and mentor for those who wanted to be successful in business through hard work and perseverance,” Ficano said. “He has made countless contributions to the quality of life in this area and will be remembered for his generosity.”

    Barden, who was fighting lung cancer, was 67.

  2. rikyrah says:



    Why not? Luther Campbell for mayor
    May 21, 2011 ·

    NOTE: Today is the last day to vote early in Miami-Dade. It’s also rapture day, so, well … you know the drill. It might be now or never. The official election day, assuming we’re all still here, is on Tuesday, May 24.

    I don’t live in Miami-Dade County, so in the end, my opinion really doesn’t matter. But if I did live there, I’d be voting for Luke Campbell for mayor. Wait, wait, let me explain.

    I’m sure most of my friends will say I’m nuts. And for the record, I have withheld judgment until I got the chance to hear all the candidates for myself, which I did by watching one prior debate, and hosting another (the recent one held by the NAACP.) That said, let me start off by explaining what is NOT behind my pick from the 11 candidates vying to lead Florida’s largest county in Tuesday’s special election.

    For starters, it’s not because I’m a fan of, or even condone the messages in, “Uncle Luke’s” music. I frankly never liked bass music. I grew up liking New York hip hop, and West Coast hip hop. The farthest south I can tolerate, rap-wise, is Atlanta (with the occasional exception of Rick Ross.) So I don’t come at this as a Luke “fan.” In fact, I share with a lot of other women, some serious issues about his history of professional misogyny. But at some point, we should allow people to grow up, and grow beyond their history. If past moral strangeness were a bar to public service, we’d have to root out every philandering, foul-mouthed politician in the game, and there’d be virtually nobody left.

    I also don’t know Mr. Campbell personally, though he and I have some mutual friends. I’ve met him exactly once, briefly, when I even did some PR for a celebrity peewee football All Star event in Miami a few years ago. What struck me about Luther back then was that while he’s got “that reputation” – he’s serious about working with kids. Luke’s team, and the one coached by fellow rapper Nelly, were some of the best behaved, most respectful, most obviously cared for kids there that day (Snoop and his team, on the other hand … Jesus, take the wheel…) And Luke seemed clearly to have taken a personal interest in those kids, not as a stunt, or to earn some community give-back cred, but because he has a long time passion for football (including UM football — sometimes with controversial results) and his community. He has continued that interest by coaching not just peewee football, but also by volunteering as a coach/mentor at Miami Central High School (the same school President Obama visited a few weeks ago to tout his education reforms.)

    In addition, Luke actually has some real ideas that transcend the stereotype he created for himself back in the day. He’s running as a regular guy — a husband and father and fellow “fed up” taxpayer who wants to see government corruption rooted out, jobs brought home, Jackson hospital fixed, community policing enacted and revenues balanced out (yeah, he wants to decriminalize marijuana and enact a stripper tax. Read Luke’s platform here.) And if running as an “everyman” is fine for the tea party, why not Luke?

    Having had a successful rap career, Campbell could be doing anything. But he chooses to put his name on a column (in the Miami New Times) in which he dares to name names, and put forward a quite informed opinion about local politics. I can relate to the idea that putting yourself out there in that way creates a certain vulnerability. It’s not just the hate mail — some of which can be pretty ugly. You also have to see the politicians you criticize in the community in real time, and it takes a certain amount of gumption to put them out there in print, and sign it, putting aside the fact that it could crush your “access.” Luke gets respect for that.

    Now, of course, there are a lot of people who despite his insistence that he’s serious, are dismissing Campbell as a “celebrity candidate.”

    Personally, I don’t celebrity candidacies are either always bad or always good. Like anything else, you find smart, capable people in all professions. Sure, voters tend to gravitate toward names they know, so you get a Governor Schwarzenegger (and his side dishes), a Congressman who used to play Gopher on the Love Boat, an NFL athlete (or “Real World” contestant) turned politician or a President Reagan. But you also get a Senator Al Franken. Whether you agree(d) with them or not, these guys actually had well formed political ideas before they ran, but used their celebrity to propel themselves into contention. We are a society that takes the political views of our celebrities seriously, to the point where it becomes news when Matt Damon is disappointed with President Obama.

    Running on celebrity name ID is, to my mind, no worse than bankrolling your campaign with your megabucks and foisting your evil, bald self on the state of Florida mostly so you can rip it up at the roots and probably enrich yourself. (Ahem) … and some nutters think the guy who did that could be president. Eighteen months of Luke cannot be worse than the four years of Rick Scott that Florida voters inflicted on themselves in 2010.

    But can a non-Cuban win?

    Whatever happens on Tuesday, sometime soon, Miami-Dade needs to find a way to break out of what has become an ethnic one-note that doesn’t serve the entire community. It has become axiomatic that only a Cuban-American can become county mayor, and that idea is offensive, not just to the anglos, blacks and non-Cuban Hispanics who actually, together, now make up about more than 50 percent of the population — it’s also offensive to Cuban-Americans; suggesting that they lack the basic good will to vote beyond their tribe.

    Has the recent history of Miami-Dade suggested that only a Cuban can win? Sure. But what major candidates — with significant name ID — from outside that community have stepped forward recently? The late (and controversial) Art Teele came close in 1996, making it into a run-off with Alex Penelas. But that was 1996 — 15 years ago. Meanwhile, up in Jacksonville, which has roughly the same percentage of white voters as Miami-Dade does Cuban-Americans, and where the percentage of black voters is just 9 percent higher than in Miami-Dade, an African-American Democrat, Alvin Brown, just got elected mayor, defying the double stereotype that no Democrat, and no black person, could win that seat.

    Campbell and Robaina have been the only two candidates making a serious, sustained effort to reach out beyond their ethnic base, with Robaina hiring an African-American campaign team and refusing to participate in debates that exclude non Spanish-speaking candidates, and Campbell touting his relationship with Hispanics in the hip-hop and business communities. If these two got into the run-off, they would represent the broadest collective outreach to the Miami-Dade residents of any other candidate combination.

    Miami-Dade is a Democratic county. Shouldn’t it have a Democratic mayor?

    Meanwhile, as a Democrat, I frankly couldn’t bring myself to pull the lever for one of the umpteen Republicans running, without at least considering an alternative. Yes, Julio Robaina has the mayoral experience to hit the ground running. But his past is at least as flawed as Luke’s is outrageous. And he’s a Republican, endorsed in the mayor’s race by Jeb Bush and supported by the far right Christian Family Coalition.

    Carlos Gimenez comes across as a great manager — if a dry and uninspiring politician who seems to be being dragged kicking and screaming into actual communication with humans. If I had a multi-bazillion dollar company, I’d hire him to be my CEO. And he was right about the Marlin’s stadium. But he’s a Republican, too. And also boring.

    Marcello Llorente hasn’t even made a pretense of giving the first of any damns about any community outside his Cuban-American base (I guess you could give him props for honesty.) And for that matter, neither has Jose “Pepe” Cancio. Worse, Llorente has proven himself to be a rank hypocrite: agnostic on the toxic new voter law signed by Rick Scott yesterday, but suing to prevent that law from applying to the race he’s in. And both of them are Republicans, too. In fact, Llorente is a Jeb Bush Republican.

    Miami-Dade County is a majority Democratic county. Has been for ages. Non-partisan office or not, it should have a mayor whose politics and policy mirror the values of the majority of voters, who happen to be Democrats. Sorry, but I just can’t get excited about having a Jeb Bush-anointed mayor running the place.

    So what about the other black candidates? Well, Eddie Lewis is a complete unknown who can’t win and has no experience. Ditto Wilbur “Short Stop” Bell, who claims to be a “multi-millionaire,” but other than that, I couldn’t tell you anything about him. Roosevelt Bradley did run the Transit agency, but whether or not you believe he was unfairly fired by former mayor Carlos Alvarez, getting along with your mayor is part of the job of a municipal bureaucrat. If he couldn’t figure out a way to do that, and worse, if he did what he was accused of doing, I’m not clear on why he deserves a promotion to the top spot.

    The other candidates I know very little about, other than the fact that Dr. Farid Khavari has written a lot of books. (There’s also someone in the race named Jeffrey Lampert, who I believe is an attorney.)

    Last but not least, there’s Gabrielle Redfern. She’s actually my favorite candidate in many ways. She’s sharp, witty, and right on the issues. But Ms. Redfern has no experience even being in the rhetorical fray of county politics — her background is in Miami Beach, where she heroically pushed for more pedestrian and bike access to the roadways. A complete unknown, she has no real chance of winning, though I’d love to see her run for the commission, or for mayor of Miami Beach.

    Which brings me back to Luke.

    Is he the ideal mayoral candidate? No. None of these candidates are. But Luke is the one guy who’s talking about “one Miami” — about bringing together the various, competing ethnic groups and putting them all on an equal footing. He’s the one guy who has a personal, demonstrated interest in what happens to the kids in the urban core. He’s the one guy focusing on things like community policing, which rarely get a hearing in county-wide races. And he’s the one guy who has a shot of getting into the run-off. A recent Miami Herald poll showed Campbell running third at 10 percent, behind Robaina (20 percent) and Gimenez (25 percent.) That’s a longshot, but it’s not an impossibility in a poll with 25 percent undecided. All that has to happen is for the top vote getter to fall short of 50 percent, and Miami-Dade has got itself a run-off.

    It would be a good thing to have a Democrat in that run-off. It would be a good thing to have a guy with name ID and a following, who could bring a varied ethnic constituency into that run-off. And for those who are worried about Campbell’s rap persona or his articulation or his association with strippers, I have three words for you: Sweet Mickey Martelly. And he’s not even just a mayor. And here are four more: good chief of staff. Those last four words can help any reasonably intelligent, competent person be a good mayor. Luther Campbell is not some young hip-hop head. He’s 50 years old, has run businesses (with ups and downs — not unlike a certain hotel magnate the media recently took seriously for his fake presidential campaign.) And he is running with a seriousness that suggests he’d take the actual job seriously, too.

    More importantly, win or lose, Luke has the best chance of any of the candidates to get younger people — who after all are the future of this community — engaged, both now, and leading up to the presidential election. His candidacy is bringing attention to important issues, and if his candidacy raises turnout even 5 percent, I’ll consider that a win for Miami-Dade.

    Just my take. Disagree if you like. And know that it’s one hell of a longshot. But if I was in Miami-Dade County, my vote would go to Luther Campbell for mayor.

    I’m dead serious.

  3. rikyrah says:

    The Bibi-Barack Chess Game

    Rick Hertzberg offers us a graceful, if pessimistic, guide. Money quote:

    The President wants to make peace and presumably knows that it won’t happen without a huge and politically brutal American effort. Such an effort would probably provoke the Israel lobby (a better name for which would be the Likud lobby) into an all-out fight against his reëlection.

    Netanyahu may not be personally and psychologically capable of making the necessary concessions. In any case he couldn’t make them without bringing down his own government, which relies on the extreme revanchist right for its survival, and forming a new coalition with opposition parties like the center-left/center-right Kadima. The rapprochement between Fatah and Hamas, though probably a precondition for an eventual settlement, makes it harder for the Palestinian side to make their own necessary concessions, at least in the short term. Meanwhile, this week’s mass marches along the borders suggest that the Arab Spring has finally come knocking at Israel’s door.

    It has indeed been a remarkable week, and as the blog has shown, one that took me by surprise. I saw nothing that new in the president’s speech on Israel-Palestine – just a minimal request directed to both sides based on a settlement everyone knows is the only equitable one, and that has been the cornerstone of US policy for a very long time. But the rank hysteria that immediately sprang from Jerusalem and quickly enveloped the far-right-wing-media-industrial-complex, revealed far more plainly than before that the gulf between Israel and the rest of the world is simply vast.

    It appears that the maximum Netanyahu would allow in any two state solution are some kind of autonomous bantustans in the West Bank, surrounded by Israeli military and security forces and buffered at the Jordan border with IDF troops. Forget about Jerusalem and the right of return. If this is Israel’s bottom line, there will be no peace, and there should be no peace, because of the rank injustice of this non-solution. More to the point, Netanyahu is no longer on the Israeli fringe. As we’ve tried to document in our series of posts “An Epidemic Of Not Watching”, there is very solid and wide support in Israel for such a maximalist position, and in America, this is what most of the American Jewish Establishment has fatefully backed.

    What strikes me is the visceral and emotional power behind the AIPAC line, displayed in Netanyahu’s contemptuous, disgraceful, desperate public dressing down of the American president in the White House. Just observe the tone of Netanyahu’s voice, and the Cheney-like determination to impose his will on the world, regardless of anyone else, and certainly without the slightest concern for his ally’s wider foreign policy and security needs. It seems clear to me that he believes that an American president, backed by the Quartet, must simply bow toward Israel’s own needs, as he perceives them, rather than the other way round. Has Netanyahu ever asked, one wonders, what he could actually do to help Obama, president of Israel’s oldest, and strongest ally in an era of enormous social and political change? That, it seems, is not how this alliance works. Moroever, an alliance in which one party is acting in direct conflict with the needs and goals of the other is an unstable one. Yes, there are unshakeable, powerful bonds between the two countries, and rightly so. But emotional bonds are not enough if, in the end, core national interests collide – and no compromise is possible.

    The logic of this seems rather dark to me.

    Netanyahu’s current position means that the US is supposed to sacrifice its broader goals of reconciliation with an emergent democratic Arab world, potentially jeopardize its relations with a democratic Egypt, isolate itself from every other ally, and identify the US permanently with a state that, in its current configuration and with its current behavior, deepens and inflames the global conflict with Jihadist Islam. Netanyahu, in other words, wants the US to clasp itself to Israel’s total distrust of every Arab state and population in an era where it is vital for the US to do exactly the opposite.

    And it is absurd not to notice Obama’s even-handedness. It’s clear he won’t legitimize Hamas until Hamas legitimizes itself by acknowledging Israel’s right to exist as a Jewish state and dropping its virulent, violent anti-Semitism. He rebuked Abbas for going the UN route. Like any US president, he is committed to Israel’s security and is, indeed, vital to it. But all he asks is a good faith attempt by the Israelis to acknowledge that their future state has to be based on the 1967 lines with landswaps. Indefensible? Says who? With a regional monopoly of over a hundred nuclear warheads and the best intelligence and military in its neigborhood, and a vibrant economy, Israel is not vulnerable. And in so far as it may be vulnerable – to Iran’s nuclear gambit – its government is alienating the indispensable ally in this deserved quest for security. This is panic and paranoia, not reason and self-interest.

    And no one seems to appreciate Obama’s political courage in all this. Obama seems to understand that an equitable two-state solution is a key crucible for the change he is seeking with respect to the Muslim world, the minimum necessary to advance US interests in the region and against Jihadism abroad. With each month in office, he has pursued this, through humiliation after humiliation from the Israelis, who are openly trying to lobby the press, media, political parties and Congress to isolate this president and destroy his vision for peace and the historic and generational potential his presidency still promises. To achieve this, he has to face down the apocalyptic Christianist right, the entire FNC-RNC media machine, a sizable chunk of his party’s financial base, and the US Congress. And yet on he pushes – civilly, rationally, patiently.

    This really is a titanic struggle between fear and hope. What has changed since Gaza is the context. The Arab Spring has, in my view, made fear more dangerous and hope more necessary. The democratic spring – from Tehran to Tunis – is the opposite force to the logic of the dead-end Gaza war, as to the mindset of Assad and Qaddafi.

    If Israelis refuse to rise to this occasion, however fraught with risk, then they will cede moral authority, even more than they already have, to those they are still seeking to control. And if they persist in this, they risk bringing about the very existential conflict they say they fear so much. It is the task of a true ally to tell this truth. And to persevere.

  4. rikyrah says:

    GOP FEC Commissioner To Campaign Reformers: You’ve Wasted Your Life

    Bloomberg has a great report out today on the influx of cash from secret donors into U.S. elections and the lack of action from the Federal Election Commission.

    The report revealed at least $4.05 million in campaign spending by five Republican-leaning groups in the lead up to the November 2010 election — none of which was recorded by the FEC, in an apparent violation of federal law. One of the groups, the “Commission on Hope,” spent at least $2.10 million on ads against 11 Democrats in seven states in the 60 days prior to the election, according to estimates by Campaign Media. Ten of those Democrats lost.

    But what really stood out was a comment from Republican FEC Commissioner Donald McGahn, who basically said that campaign reform advocates had wasted their lives.

    “I feel bad for” the reform groups that call the agency dysfunctional, he said. “Much of their life’s work has been rendered irrelevant by a series of stinging court cases.”

    Responding to McGahn’s comments, Fred Wertheimer of the group Democracy 21 said that campaign finance supporters “work to protect the health and integrity of our democracy and to protect against the corruption of government decisions and the officeholders who make them.”

    “If Mr. McGahn, a former Washington political operative and an opponent of campaign finance laws, wants to see that as a waste of time, that’s his problem not mine,” Wertheimer told TPM in a statement.

    Bloomberg’s report also found another group called “Water for All” ran ads on Spanish stations showing Sen. Barbara Boxer (D-CA) with a red circle and a line running through her, but didn’t report its campaign expenditures because their lawyer said the ads weren’t political in nature.

  5. rikyrah says:

    GOP Response To Town Hall Backlash: Ban Recording Devices And Censor Citizen Journalists

    The premier political story of the past few months has been the Republican plan to dismantle Medicare and the resulting voter backlash. In town halls across the country, voters are expressing their anger at the GOP priorities of ending Medicare, extending tax breaks for the wealthy, and protecting subsidies for oil companies.

    ThinkProgress has reported extensively from town halls in Florida, Wisconsin, Arizona, and elsewhere. In addition, citizen journalists have attended town halls and reported about them online, allowing others who couldn’t attend in person to see the event.

    However, some congressmen are concerned about what could happen if citizen journalists repost their town halls on the Internet. At least two members of Congress have taken extraordinary measures to shut down the spread of information.

    ThinkProgress readers passed along the following photos, taken outside town halls held by Rep. Lou Barletta (R-PA) and Rep. Joe Heck (R-NV). Barletta specifically barred citizen journalists and other non-credentialed media from recording the event, while Heck took a more encompassing approach of “no recording devices” at all:

    When Republicans won back the House in 2010, one of their central promises was “to make Congress more transparent.” However, when it comes to their own congressional events, the same standard apparently does not apply.

    Indeed, with members like Lou Barletta and Joe Heck barring citizens from recording the events and preventing those who couldn’t attend from seeing what the congressmen had to say, one has to ask: what are they trying to hide?

  6. rikyrah says:

    Monday: The President and the First Lady will arrive in Dublin, Ireland. They will meet with President McAleese and Dr. McAleese of Ireland and later with Taoiseach Enda Kenny and Mrs. Kenny. Later, they will travel to Moneygall …in the afternoon, they will return to Dublin and the President will deliver remarks at a public event about the ties between the United States and Ireland. The President and the First Lady will spend the night in Dublin.

    Tuesday: The President and the First Lady will travel to London. Following the arrival ceremony at Buckingham Palace, they will have lunch with the Queen. In the afternoon, the President will visit Westminster Abbey. In the evening, the President and the First Lady will attend a dinner at Buckingham Palace hosted by the Queen. The President and the First Lady will spend the night in London.

    Wednesday: The President will hold a bilateral meeting with PM Cameron … the President and the PM will attend an event hosted by Mrs. Cameron and the First Lady to honor military families … the President and PM will hold a joint press conference …. the President will deliver a speech to the U.K. Parliament …. In the evening, the President and the First Lady will hold a dinner in the Queen’s honor at the residence of the American ambassador in London. The President and the First Lady will spend the night in London.

    Thursday: The President will travel from London to Deauville, France for the G-8 meetings … will hold a bilateral meeting with President Medvedev of Russia …. participates in the G-8 working lunch and working sessions … will also hold a bilateral meeting with Prime Minister Kan of Japan.

    Friday: The President will hold a bilateral meeting with President Sarkozy of France …. will then participate in the G-8 working sessions …. Later, the President will travel from France to Warsaw, Poland. In the evening, the President and President Komorowski of Poland will host a dinner for the heads of state of Central and Eastern Europe.

    Saturday: The President will hold a bilateral meeting with President Komorowski of Poland … the President and Prime Minister Tusk of Poland will hold a working lunch …. the President and Prime Minister Tusk will hold a joint press conference …. the President will depart for Washington, DC.

  7. rikyrah says:

    Dr. Watkins is showing his bitchassness…


    Dr. Boyce Watkins; Tulane Professor Melissa Harris-Perry’s Personal Attacks on Dr. Cornel West Show that She May Be Hiding Something…

    As Professor Cornel West has gone around the nation critiquing the policies of President Obama, he has met with a firestorm like no other: Melissa Harris-Perry at Tulane University has gone after Professor West as if he were the man who who stole her first born child. Others around the nation have joined in,including Tom Joyner, who wrote off every Obama critic as a “hater” who needs to simply remain silent.

    One of the interesting things about all the criticism being thrust at Professor West is that much of it presumes that Cornel is attacking President Obama for personal reasons. There are rumors that he is angry that he was never invited to the inauguration, or that he felt dismissed because the administration won’t return his phone calls. There is no end to the reasons that people are coming up with to explain why Professor West has done what he’s always done, which is to advocate for black, brown, poor and working class people.

    These criticisms of West are peculiar and ironic for a couple of reasons. First, it dismisses the responsibility of those who are critical of the professor to come up with clear evidence to prove that West is wrong. After all, it’s hard to check the website to find much evidence that the Obama Administration has done very much to end racial inequality or fight mass incarceration. Sure, there are other presidential priorities, but if the black vote matters for reelection, then black voters should not have to be enthusiastic about perpetuating the very systems that lead to their own suffering. Additionally, the administration’s decision to allow for large gaps of time between meetings with the Congressional Black Caucus also undermines their ability to prove that West is wrong.

    Secondly, the criticism is interesting because one might be able to readily and easily argue that the accuser is as guilty as the accused for allowing personal biases to taint his/her perceptions of West and his remarks. While Professor Harris-Perry can readily cite the close interactions between Professor West and President Obama, she doesn’t mention that she herself worked down the hall from Professor West at Princeton University. When a person goes out of their way to strategically, systemically and obsessively target a colleague that they worked with every day for a number of years, one has to wonder what sour intentions lie behind the motivations of the attacker.


    yo Boyce, this is for damn sho…..she ain’t hiding no child in Europe…

    • Oh, no he didn’t?!

      When a person goes out of their way to strategically, systemically and obsessively target a colleague that they worked with every day for a number of years, one has to wonder what sour intentions lie behind the motivations of the attacker.

      Boyce Watkins is really showing his black ass! What are your motivations behind attacking our President, Boyce? Jealous much, eh? You’re a crab in a fking barrel. STFU!

    • creolechild says:

      Boyce, these are not “rumors,” they’re allegations that came straight from Cornel West’s mouth. Get YOUR facts straight before attacking Melissa Harris-Perry for telling the truth. Excerpts from the article below:

      “In an interview published by TruthDig Monday, West told Chris Hedges that he felt snubbed by the president after doing 65 events during the 2008 campaign. “I used to call my dear brother [Obama] every two weeks,” he explained. “I said a prayer on the phone for him, especially before a debate. And I never got a call back.”


      “I said, wow, this is kind of strange. He doesn’t have time, even two seconds, to say thank you or I’m glad you’re pulling for me and praying for me, but he’s calling these other people. I said, this is very interesting. And then as it turns out with the inauguration I couldn’t get a ticket with my mother and my brother. I said this is very strange. We drive into the hotel and the guy who picks up my bags from the hotel has a ticket to the inauguration. My mom says, ‘That’s something that this dear brother can get a ticket and you can’t get one, honey, all the work you did for him from Iowa.”


      “As president of Harvard in 2000, Summers reportedly rebuked West for missing classes to working on personal projects. In 2002, West left Harvard for Princeton.”

  8. Herman Cain For President Campaign Launches (VIDEO)

    Former Godfather’s Pizza CEO Herman Cain announced that he will run for president in 2012 on Saturday.

    The newly-minted Republican presidential candidate alerted his supporters that he would be announcing his plans for the next election cycle earlier this week. He recorded a video message addressing his political ambitions and outlining his vision for the future of the country.

    Cain may not be as well known as some of the other Republicans in the 2012 mix; however, he’s found success in appealing to conservatives on the trail. He proved to be a smash hit at the first GOP presidential primary debate of the election season earlier this month in South Carolina. HuffPost’s Sam Stein reported at the time:

    Conservative messaging guru Frank Luntz polls crowds after big events for their instantaneous reaction. And in the case of the GOP presidential debate, the results were pretty remarkable (even though the whole thing is entirely unscientific).
    The crowd of roughly 30 unanimously said that pizza magnate Herman Cain won the debate. Only one of them went into the evening supporting Cain. A clear majority — citing his “straight talk” on the economy and his capacity to criticize the president — said they would now support his presidential campaign.

    “I have never had this kind of reaction until tonight,” said Luntz. “Something very special happened this evening.”

    The crowd of roughly 30?

    ****Rolling my eyes very hard!****

  9. 3 Chics misses you, Ametia!

    Crying and blowing nose

    Happy travels!

    Buddy Guy & Tracy Chapman – Ain’t no sunshine

  10. Obama Pardons 8 People

    WASHINGTON — President Barack Obama on Friday pardoned eight people convicted of crimes ranging from conspiring to import marijuana to selling alligator hides.

    The action marked the second set of pardons Obama has granted since becoming president. The first pardons, last December, went to nine people whose crimes included possessing drugs, counterfeiting and mutilating coins.

    Like the earlier pardons, the latest did not involve anyone well-known. The cases date back as far as 1975, when Randy Eugene Dyer of Burien, Wash., was sentenced to serve five years in prison in the conspiracy to import marijuana and two related crimes.

    Another pardon recipient was Bobby Gerald Wilson of Summerton, S.C., sentenced in 1985 to 3 1/2 months in prison for aiding and abetting the possession and sale of illegal American alligator hides.

    Others who received pardons:

    _ Allen Edward Peratt Sr. of Sioux Falls, S.D., sentenced in 1990 to 2 1/2 years in prison for conspiring to distribute methamphetamine.

    _Christine Marie Rossiter of Lincoln, Neb., sentenced in 1992 to three years of probation for conspiring to distribute less than 110 pounds of marijuana.

    _ Patricia Ann Weinzatl of Prentice, Wis., sentenced in 2001 to three years of probation for structuring financial transactions to evade bank reporting requirements.

    _ Michael Ray Neal of Palm Coast, Fla., sentenced in 1991 to six months in prison for unauthorized decryption of satellite cable programming.

    Edwin Alan North of Wolcottville, Ind., sentenced to six months of probation for transferring a firearm without payment of tax.

    _ Danny Alonzo Levitz of Angola, Ind., sentenced in 1980 to two years of probation for conspiracy.

    The White House, as is typically the case with every administration, offered no elaboration for the president’s pardons.

  11. Why Breitbart is TOAST (New Court Docs from Shirley Sherrod) took a little time to dissect the latest Sherrod filing in her case against Breitbart for defamation. Specifically her lawyers response to Breitbart’s Pro Bono lawyer’s curious filing for a change of venue that threw everything but the kitchen sink in there, including precedent law from between 21 to 60 years ago, one of which has long since been invalidated by CONGRESS. (You’d think his lawyers might notice that.)

    TWITTER now stars in these court papers (Keith Olbermann broadcasts were used as a reference in Breitbart’s previous Change of Venue filing, in a bizarre “neener neener” fashion. You had to be there.)

    Just so you know, Breitbart’s lawyers hosed themselves by FIRST moving the venue from DC TO DC court, THEN demanding it be moved to California, because Breitbart can’t possibly make it to DC or run his site from an IPhone. Gosh, he hardly EVER goes there, well, except for CPAC, and an alcohol saturated Book Release, and speaking at the Heritage Foundation, and.. well, Sherrod’s lawyers have assembled a nice little fact pattern that may explain why Breitbart seemingly blacks out and wakes up, elsewhere, DC, Las Vegas, sometimes even in California.

    So, here are some nuggets for you to digest, if you want to read the entire filing by Sherrod’s lawyers in answer to Breitbart’s last filing, you can download that HERE. This is Da Kine, brothers and sisters. Primo lawyering. Breitbart’s lawyers are handed their asses on a plate, piled high, with Grey Poupon at the side.

    Let’s get started:

    TWITTER Statements by Breitbart and O’Connor are in use in Sherrod lawsuit. Breitbart’s TWITTER Taunting is apparently now part of the Sherrod case. And oh baby, is he still DUMB. In a Twitter exchange months ago I warned him to shut his big fat mouth, but NO. Instead he called my wife a racist and blocked both of us. He calls nearly everyone a racist before he blocks them. His special way of saying, “Kiss my ring.”

    Sherrod’s lawyers take no prisoners:


    “When Plaintiff first filed her lawsuit in February 2011, Defendants Andrew Breitbart and Larry O’Connor each issued public statements taunting Mrs. Sherrod to “Bring it On,”1 suggesting that Defendants were interested in defending the merits of their defamatory statements. Now, however, several months later, they have thrown up a series of removal, transfer, and dismissal motions, each designed to impose a procedural artifice delaying or preventing an on-the-merits defense of their statements, and each designed to play games with the jurisdiction and venue of the federal courts. Most troubling, however, is the fact that Defendants’ various submissions to this Court demonstrate a consistent pattern of misstating the applicable legal standards and authorities—and also the facts alleged in the Complaint.”

    First, Defendants have filed a Special Motion to Dismiss under the District of Columbia Anti-SLAPP Act of 2010, an act that—by their own admission—did not become effective until March 31, 2011, nearly a month and a half after the Complaint in this case was filed. To compound this obvious problem, Defendants fail entirely to explain how the Act could possibly have any retroactive effect; instead, they merely conclude it is retroactive in a footnote with a cursory citation to a case that was limited and distinguished by the D.C. Court of Appeals just last year. Moreover, Defendants offer no explanation for why their motion is not procedurally defaulted by the plain language of the statute they are attempting to employ—given that they filed more than two weeks after the statutory deadline had passed. With all of these (and other) fatal flaws, Defendants’ “special” motion fails as a matter of law and should be summarily rejected.
    See… (“Oh… in case anyone missed it, because it was kind of late on Saturday night when I said it… let me repeat: ‘Bring it on!’”).

    Here’s another TWITTER statement by Breitbart, begging Holder to hold Sherrod accountable FOR racial Discrimination. (He OWNS it, Now he gets to Pay for it):

    As alleged in the Complaint, Defendants’ publications—including those on,, and—when taken as a whole, clearly accuse Mrs. Sherrod of admitting that she exercised her USDA job in a racially discriminatory manner.
    A fourth statement was posted by Defendant Breitbart on Twitter that same day: “Will Eric Holder’s DOJ hold accountable fed appointee Shirley Sherrod for admitting practicing racial discrimination?” Id.

    Mr O’Connor TWEETS Show that he travels to DC as well. Oops.

    “Mr. O’Connor routinely travels here, too:19
    On April 10, 2011, Mr. O’Connor publicly alerted his “DC pals” that it “[l]ooks like I’ll be there tomorrow,”20 explaining that he’d be spending nearly a week in the District.21
    See…. See, e.g.,… (video of Defendant Breitbart’s keynote speech at the
    2010 CPAC conference in Washington, D.C.). See….
    In addition to these personal appearances, Mr. Breitbart has been a frequent contributor to the Washington Times.
    In light of Defendants’ extensive travel and connections here, it is no wonder they carefully distinguish their contacts with the District (“[n]either Breitbart nor O’Connor have [sic] ever lived or worked in D.C.,” Defs.’ Mem. at 4) from their contacts with Georgia (“neither Breitbart nor O’Connor regularly does or solicits business, engages in any other persistent court [sic] of conduct, or derives substantial revenue from goods used or consumed or services rendered in Georgia,” id.).
    See…. See…. “
    On Breitbart’s Eric Holder TWEET Statement (Defendants describe TWITTER as a “Playful” Medium) Gosh, he was just being FUNNY, like Limbaugh when HE gets caught:


  12. rikyrah says:

    Good Morning, Everyone :)

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